Tuesday, 31 January 2012

my first ATC swap

So I joined in my first ever ATC swap via willowing and swapped with a lovely artist called Tracey Russell who lives in Canada.  The theme for the swap was ladybirds.  The size for ATC is really quite small at 2.5" x 3.5" and so it took me a little while to decide what to do in such a small space.

The first card was more of a cartoony effort with a messy background... cute but not brilliant.

The second card was a more anatomical drawing with some dimensional gel paint and some faux enamel spots.  I love this and the swipe silver paint for the background.

As for the cards I received from Tracey I will be adding them in a future post if I can't find a link to her blog.

Next months theme is stars and I'm already signed up and excited. Wonder where my artwork will end up and what I'll get in return.

Thanks for looking.

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Sunday, 29 January 2012

Finishing touches for the fairies

So amongst other tasks today I have finished off the fairies so the picture is finished with the exception of the final layer of varnish.
Each has different hair and a different personality I think and I'm pleased with how it's turned out.

So now I just have to wait for the mod Podge to arrive and I'm done!
Thank you for looking. Enjoy!

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Making cards again

So today I made a card which I can't post yet, but it made me realise I hadn't posted when I made some cards a week or so ago, so I thought why not catch up with this too whilst I seem to be in a blog writing mood!
This was a PolkaDoodles stamp free with a magazine and I followed one of the design ideas from the magazine to paper piece the image with patterned paper.

The paper itself was also a freebie from an old magazine and I love it. Really fresh and bright and pretty.

The background I again used a magazine article as a starting point although my end one looks a little different.

Really pleased with this although it took an age to do each piece and reminded me that I hate cutting out!
From the same set of stamps I did this and this was again using the ideas in the mag as a starting point. Love the Martha Stewart punch I used for the vellum ribbon and it was lovely to get to use the pro markers again.
Used the same Martha Stewart punch as the one above, but this time stuck to the embellishment as the main feature. Stamping up sentiment stamp for the corner, stamped in rose red stampin up ink.
This time a Gorjuss stamp, coloured with pro markers and on a die cut panel. I then distressed the edge with the spun sugar distress ink before layering up and adding the embellishments.

Can you see the theme of the punch in the background once again! This time a pale pinky lilac vellum ribbon effect!
Now this is very different.

As part of my order with Helen of stampin up goodies she popped in a little kit to make up a couple of cards and this is what I made with mine. I was meant to post this on another blog somewhere as a link but can't find it now so it will have to be here instead!

Obviously not so cutesy like my others above, but a nice simple card with lovely colours and textures. Thanks Helen. P.s. hope u feel better soon! Please everyone visit Helen's personal blog here
I did make some more cards but forgot to take photos and they are all now in the stash box at work, or already sold! But at least you can see some of the stuff I have been up to in between the art I've been producing!

Thank you for looking and happy crafting one and all!

catch up post

A quick catch up post to show you the she art canvases I made before Christmas as presents for three special friends at work.

Firstly I got three backgrounds done... all at the same time and yet all different.

Then I added the three girls and then the finishing touches and their phrases.

They all like their presents... I hope you enjoyed looking!

Happy crafting!

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She fairies ... A work in progress...

So I volunteered my services to make a picture for one of princess m's friends bedrooms... And fairies/butterflies was the request. So I decided to do some "she fairies" on a pink background.

So I started with a mix of pinks acrylics and white acrylic and gesso and used card to scrape it across the canvas so it looks all messy but blended. I also scratched into the paint whilst wet to add some texture of wiggly lines and flowers. Then I sprayed it with the candy pink shimmer spray. Once that was dry I punched some small hearts into some scrap card randomly to use as a stencil. At this point princess m wanted to join in so she helped to sponge the pale pink paint through the stencils. This was then left to dry.

So then I started to build the fairies...

First the heads, bodies and legs, and then the fun part of dressing them up!

I chose some of the patterned paper that came with a magazine some time ago to mix and match their outfits with similar colours and patterns. And then stuck them all together.
Next ... Some wings. I cut these out of white card and decided which wings fit which fairy and then shaped each individually. then M wanted to hello again so she was in charge of spraying them with the lilac and pink shimmer sprays.

I then outlined the wings and doodled and crossed them to make them more in keeping with the she art theme as taught by Christy Tomlinson... I can't recommend her work enough as its so lovely.
Then I similarly outlined the girls and their outfits with the black pen whilst M added some glitter to the wings.

Oh yes just remembered that I added some glitter glue into the background too whilst it was wet so it has additional sparkles.

Once happy with the doodling as a starting point I then added the skin colour to the skin of the fairies which was quite a worry when I started as the book print just soaked up the paint.

Once they were dry I then glued the wings to the fairies and started laying them out to arrange the layout.
Once I was happy with the layout I used the last of my Mod Podge to glue them down... Can't believe I've used it all up and will have to order more ... Can't live without it!

So this is where I am upto ... Looking forward to adding the hair and some more doodling and then done. Don't think I can do butterflies too... It might be a bit too much for the picture as I think with the hair on the fairies I might be pushing it to add more detail without it looking messy.

Will of course post again once finished but wanted to share with you my Saturday job!

Such fun!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Postcard time again... China

So this week has been a little bit stressful with some major work hours...  but I did manage some fun too and some crafting.
Firstly met up with a sister from the circle journal group which was lovely and perfect. Felt like she was a real sister to me. Only problem was I couldn't stay for long but know at least it won't be the last meeting and what's more I have another 8 yet to meet!
Tonight I met another lovely friend, who despite having to share some upsetting news about another friend, was nice to catch up with.
And finally a catch up with the postcard challenge over with darcy at http://art-and-sole.blogspot.com
This week we have gone to China... I was very undecided on how to go with this as had too many ideas. So I went on another trip to the library. 
First to the travel books, then the history books where I found a book about the Empress Wu...
Apparently she schemed, seduced and murdered her way to become and living god and also reinvested a lot of the writing in the language.   
So I chose this symbol... Country/ Nation... Wu kept the symbol of the box and put her name symbol within the centre.
I copied the symbol freehand in pen then added the red wash in Dylusion ink and then Distress inked the edge with the Black Soot ink.
In the end a simple construction but one I love...  enjoy!
Now off to tidy up the art stuff and hope for a good journey to China for my postcard friends.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Postcard time again ... Brazil.... It's time for Carnavale

Yes how quickly the week flew past... I wish full of good stuff but in reality hectic and a little in the way of illness as I've developed an interesting rash over the past 24 hours so my skin feels like its on fire at the moment.

Anyways onto more pleasant stuff... Postcard time again and this time out of Europe we venture to Brazil. I knew fairly quickly I'd be off to Carnavale although at first was going for a collage with feathers etc, but decided against the feathers as couldn't quite get the design right in my sketch... So another painting. This time acrylics and watercolour mixed. More time spent in the library... This time a children's fact book about brazil came to the rescue with some pics of Carnavale to get me inspired.

This time the base card was some paper for acrylics so I could get some acrylics down. Sketched out the samba girl outline and then added the circles for the colour behind and did a layer with the watercolours. Then added some acrylics and gesso to add the texture and enrich the colours a little more. Also added some detail with silver paint and some black pen. Finally added the gems to add the final bits of sparkle.

So here you are... Florence writes to Boston from Brazil... She is still full of questions.
So hope you like it... Looking forward to the visit to brazil as i travel round the blogs... Why don't you join me... here is darcys blog to find all the other participants

In other news I have also started on another she art girl as a present for a friend to give her sister... So once the picture is finished there will be another blog post with that. I am also working on the circle journal for lea... She is currently enjoying blogging so please go and visit her... here

Such fun

See you soon

C x

Saturday, 14 January 2012

The conversation continues... A Postcard from Spain

So the next country we are challenged with is Spain... A good one for me as I really love Spain and knew immediately I wanted to capture something from the Andalusia region as my parents have a house there. Some hunting in guidebooks in the library and I found a picture of the wonderful arches in the Mesquita In Cordoba and knew that was what I wanted to capture.
So I went for it... A couple of sketches in a book and then onto the postcards bravely freehand and in pen ( I must be nuts! ). Finished with watercolour pencils and inked around the edges with black ink to finish off. No in progress as I just flew through actually producing it so didn't stop for the pics.
So there you go...

Now if you like these please go and check out the other participants via darcys blog... link here.... There are so superb offerings from everyone else. Travelling around Austria last week was fab...



Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Circle journal update... Jackie's journal

Now that the journal has been passed along to the next recipient it is time to blog what I did. In all honesty it has been quite some time since I did the work on the journal but we took a break from posting them on over Christmas to avoid the Xmas post and gIve ourselves a break at the busy time. So jackie's journal has been wrapped up safe and sound for about a month waiting to post it.

Then of course i forgot to take pics of the final pages and so have to thank the lovely Tracey for doing the honours and some amazing pics I have to say... Far better than the ones I would have taken.

So here you go... Jackie's work is usually full of texture and she loves using book print etc in her work so I decided to use this as the basis and just started with some random shapes of book print and spraying them with the ink sprays... From this I decided upon a layered flower ... And this meant lots of bits of folded and cut book print, half stuck down to provide little flaps. These were all sprayed in different lilacs, silver and pinks.

Before I stuck them down however I wanted the page itself to also have a texture. So I gessoed the page using a stencil I made from some card with the flower punch. Once dry I washed it with some of the lilac colours, stamped some leafy images and some random statements about friends etc and added the punched flowers too. and some embossed images for more texture.

Then came the job of sticking down the Book print... Boy did that take some drying... And also some courage to keep going with it even though jackies journal is now possibly the most bulky thing ever!

Then I added doodling and some rub offs and some other little bits of stamped bits. And of course the sentiment I chose to write. I couldn't find one that was exactly right so I wrote my own as jackie has become such a good friend in a short space of time it seemed more apt.

Phew ... Think that's it for the pages... Now onto the tag.

So jackie has a thing about writing about when she completes a piece of work... So I did the same in my message to her, but the background was stamped images of flowers and mixed in some heat embossing too. Unfortunately when I mod podged over the top there was some smudging as I forgot to use a waterproof pen, and also caught some paper on it before it was dry, but you can see what I was going for. On the other side however I wanted to use some fabric I had bought from stampin up so created the ruffle with the ribbons/threads trim with the button and per stamped the flowers in the blue underneath and added the good friend tag.

Fingers crossed the lovely jackie liked it... It was terrible not being able to show her her journal when she visited the house but it was only fair for the group that we don't share just because we live round the corner from each other and wait until we hand over the journals in July when we have our grand meeting in Harrogate. More about that later!

So hope you like seeing how this came together... Have a postcard to make this week from Spain and a dream board for willowing... Shame work is getting in the way of me being creative ... But must remember it keeps a roof over our heads and paper in the craft cupboard so needs must!
Have fun until next time and thanks for stopping by... Please feel free to leave comments... Always nice to read.

C xxx

Friday, 6 January 2012

The making of week one postcard challenge:austria

Ok so making of the postcard.

First port of call was to google to look up Austria artists and see if I could get inspired and it took me down a very different journey to Gustav Klimt and settled almost immediately on rendering my own version of the Tree of Life frieze.

I decided not to be completely true to the picture as clearly I am not Klimt and went for slightly different colour schemes and echo the idea rather than any true rendering.

What follows are some pics of the card in progress...
So how... Well after a few practise sketches sketched out the tree onto the watercolour card. I also added the floor part of the picture in the bright orange, pink and yellow. I then blended the background (which i should have done before I did the sketching ... Doh!) and then used the bright orange watercolour to start the tree.

Once the tree was dry I then added a gold pen outlines and some little extra gold pen details. Then I added more gold and bronze acrylic paint.

On separate paper I blended the colours for the robes and cut the shapes out, then set to on decorating them with the basic shape patterns Klimt had used.

I then added more colours, the bird on the tree and more shapes and accents.

Again on separate paper I sorted the human parts out very roughly by cutting out the shapes and using aqua markers for the shading and the gold pen.

Then it was time to layer them up and check that they worked together and add some finishing touches.

I so so so so loved doing this. And need to say a mahooosive thank you to Darcy for coming up with the challenge so please if you have enjoyed reading about this press on the button on the top right and go and visit her blog and everyone else's postcards!

Happy crafting all!

Such fun!

C xxx

Postcard challenge: week one, Austria

I can't believe how quickly the week went and the excitement I had over one small piece of card!

Ok I will post the card here and then will do a separate post to show the making of.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

The conversation starts...

So the adventure is starting and tonight I thought I would blog the start to the story. Tomorrow we are allowed to post the actual cards about which I am very excited so thought I would start the excitement off right now!

So here goes...

Florence stared at the clock hanging above the concourse at Waterloo. Her train was late and she wondered what to do with herself for the half hour she had.

Suddenly she spotted a man wearing a strange patterned jacket to the left of her. Such strange fashion she thought. He must have been to Carnaby Street. She glanced up at the clock again and then when she looked back at him she saw he had moved further down the concourse and was walking at quite a pace towards the exit.

Florence decided to treat herself to a pot of tea at the cafe whilst waiting for the train and picked up her suitcase, turning to her right and promptly bumping into someone. Florence gasped in confusion, it was the man with the jacket. She shook her head. It must be the tiredness confusing her. It must have been a popular jacket not the same man as no one could be in two places at a time.

Quickly apologising she moved off to the cafe where she knew the hot tea would restore her before her trip home to Virginia Water. As she waited to be served she noticed that the catch on her suitcase was open. She quickly checked her case to check nothing had fallen out and it was then she found the strange note.

Sorry to invade your privacy in this way Florence. I feel connected to you in a way you will find difficult to believe. If you want to know more and your thirst for adventure matches your dreams, please contact me via the address overleaf with information on where I can write to you and explain. Yours hopefully, Boston

Intrigued? Well if so tune in for what happens next when I post the first postcard tomorrow.

Such fun!

Monday, 2 January 2012

First page for LifeBook 2012

So yesterday was so exciting with start of the LifeBook 2012 at Willowing.ning (see the button on the left.  I was eager to start straightaway but we had family round for the day so very little was done... but today I made up for it and finished everything I wanted to do for this.  SO pleased with how it's turned out.

The page is all about celebrating our goddess superpowers (positive qualities).  After listing them ... with some help from the hubby as I admit to getting a bit stuck for positive stuff on my own ... I researched goddesses and came up with the idea of Antheia, a greek goddess of flowers and this idea was behind my painting.

I used watercolour paper and a mixture of watercolours and acrylics and ink for the painting.  Hope that others like it as much as I do!

Happy crafting all.