Thursday, August 30, 2018

Auditioning - A New Way to Use That Word

I don't know where I first read it used in this way, but "auditioning" is what I do when I "try out" different combinations of things like my mini scrap collages.  Here you'll see the start of another 14.

Friday, August 24, 2018

A Little Nature, A Little Nurture

It's the time of the year that we begin to have regular visits from hummingbirds in our backyard.  Usually, by the time I see them and run for the camera they are gone.  But the other night, this one was being very thorough to visit all of the zinnia blossoms and then the lantana outside the kitchen window.  

We almost stepped on this praying mantis that was on the stairs outside the condo when we arrived recently.  It was there for a couple of hours.  It looked like it was regrouping, perhaps having had a run-in with a seagull.  Do you remember being told as a child that you would be fined $50 if you killed one of these?  I always wondered who was going to fine you and how were they going to find out.  

The warm weather and humidity has toned down the sunsets lately.  Either there are big clouds blocking the show, or no clouds leaving a pretty pastel sky.  This was a couple of weeks ago - a pair of egrets flying by.

Someone wanted to sit on his papa's lap to have his ice cream.  

They were having a grand old time finding strawberries and blueberries in the ice cream.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Jingle Belles - Sketching a Winter Wonderland

The lovely Jingle Belle Stephanie created this sketch for the challenge this fortnight.  Pretty cool, eh!  There is a little leeway in sketch challenges.  Shapes, sizes, direction of design can all be variable as long as the the basic bone structure of the sketch can be recognized.

I opted for ovals rather than circles and added a strip of gold ribbon behind the trees the length of the panel.  I also stretched this sketch out to make a long, skinny card which should fit in a business-size envelope.

When I was looking through my stash for possibilities of backgrounds and stamps to use, I had a fairly good idea of where I was going with this but was a little stumped with the banner part.  A trip to Michael's this afternoon for something for school gave me a chance to look around for some inspiration.  As it turned out, the item that I went there to buy was excluded from coupons, so I had a 40% coupon to use for myself.  I was looking for some ribbon that might look a little like woodgrain, but found this gold woven ribbon in with the Christmas ribbons they were just putting out and were still regular price so the coupon worked for that.  Then I found the woodgrain paper in the scrapbook paper section which I thought I could use with a word die.  So "Bingo"!  Here you go.  

And since I'm a little, well probably more than a little behind in my Christmas card stash, I cut out and stamped enough ingredients for two more cards like this.  

Thanks Steph, for the sketchy inspiration!  Now, you'll want to head over to the Jingle Belles to see what other interpretations there are.  Just click here.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Playing in my Art Journals

First a PSA - Blogger bloggers, check your spam folder for an e-mail from Blogger asking you if you want to be notified by e-mail of comments to your blog.  Mine was in my SPAM folder which I usually don't check, but for some reason did yesterday and lo and behold, there it was.  Then later I looked at my e-mail and sure enough, there was a notification that Sabrina had left me a comment on my last post along with the contents of the comment.  Yippee!  Although it's not a habit of mine (but probably should be) I like responding by e-mail better than leaving replies to comments in the comment section.  If someone asks a question that might be pertinent to completing a project similar to what I have posted, of course, replying in the comments would be beneficial for everyone.  But sometimes you just want to make it a little more personal.  So, anyway Blogger friends - check that SPAM folder!

I splurged on a set of Arteza Brush Pens and used an illustration from a tutorial on watercoloring leaves and berries by Dawn Nicole.  

Someone on FB had posted a picture of a Rosy Maple Moth that I fell in love with and just had to try creating with some Derwent Inktense colored pencils.  (I would love to see one of these IRL.)

And the last few days I've been having some fun with my Cuttlelola dots pen.  

This one is based on a photo I took and shared a couple of posts back.  I like the way this came out except for the big mistake that I made with the shading.  I have conflicted the light source between the grass fronds and the other elements.  They all should have the darker side on the same side, but I guess I wasn't paying enough attention to that detail and didn't notice it until there were several fronds of grass already done.  Everything is a lesson, isn't it!

I think I need lots more practice with this!

Friday, August 17, 2018

Mini Scrap Collages 169-175/365

So I have to say that I haven't given up on this 365 day project, but I've decided that I'm not going to try to catch up, just go forward from here until I have 365 finished.  That could mean doubling up some in the future but I'm not going to hold myself to that.  July just got a away from me with additional summer activities and projects that had to be on the front burner.  I do have ovals cut and prepped for a few weeks more which will help as this summer and month of August comes to an end.  

Thursday, August 16, 2018

August Birthday

Today was my sister's birthday and this is the card that I made for her.  I was in AC Moore recently and had a coupon for a 30% off all purchase coupon and it's funny how my basket just kept filling up with things like these paper flowers that were only $1 per package.  I thought they'd make a lovely bouquet with some die cut greenery.  This also gave me a chance to use a new Fishnet die. 

Couldn't send this by mail though.  So HWNSNBP dropped it off with her while doing some errands today and I was at work.  He spent some time with her and I spoke with her later this evening.  My sister has some health issues involving an autoimmune disease that came on quite suddenly in the last 3 years, complicated by what was first thought to be COPD but now diagnosed as emphysema.  This has drastically impacted her ability to get around, but, she is on new meds and doing better.  She thought I made the flowers but I fessed up and told her that they were pre-made.  

Thursday, August 9, 2018

What Do You See?

What do you see?  There's a name for this.  Pareidolia.  Seeing faces or images in other things.  Woodgrain is one place to look for such things.  Like the door to the exam room in my cardiologist's office.  What do you see?

I see a face with large eyes and ears.  I also can see dancing aliens holding hands.

Below is the view of the entrance to the school I work in.  Do you see the man hanging out there?

At certain times of the day, when the light is just right I see the man.  Otherwise, I know what I think is his head is a flower pot, his shirt the dark mulch, and his arm is the downspout.

Traveling to visit Rachel a few weeks ago we got stuck in heavy, stop-and-go traffic and I happened to look up. 

What do you see?

I see the head of a pig from the side.  See, I always knew that pigs could fly!

And what might I find under this mushroom/toadstool?

A little gnome and his rabbit!  

Okay.  You know I put that there I'm sure.  

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Feel Better

A couple of people I know needed a little perking up after recent surgeries.  I have a small pile of unfinished card elements on my work table and decided to put some of them to use.  On this first one I had used this beautiful stamp gifted to me by my blogging friend Sabrina.  I apologize as my photo did not seem as dark when I edited it.  But don't you think it came out nice?  I stamped the image in Crumb Cake ink and then used markers to "watercolor" it. 
This giraffe stamp is from Unity and it comes with a different sentiment that I masked out.  I used a SU sentiment on the outside and inside which I thought fit it well.

Summer is really flying by and there's so much more I want to accomplish. 

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Jingle Belles - Banner Inspired

In case you've never visited the Jingle Belles, below you will see the beautiful blog header that is theirs this year.  Our mission this week is to let the banner inspire our cards.  

I happened to look up from my work table to the area where I keep my paper and paper cutter and sticking out of the scraps was this crazy chevron-like paper and a scrap of the reindeer paper.  What did that remind me of?  I was wracking my brain whilst working on something else when it suddenly came to me.  This week's Jingle Belles challenge.  This was as I was getting some things ready to take along for an extended weekend.  So they sat there until we returned yesterday at which time I took some self-imposed vacation time up in the stamp cave to finish this up.  (Currently watching Doctor Foster on Netflix - she's an odd one!) Then, when I came down for some nourishment, I promptly forgot to post it.  But here you have it at last.  

I know you cannot tell from the picture that those deer have some gold sparkle to them, but I did see something just now that I hadn't realized was there before.  The words "Jingle Bells" are faintly on the paper and I didn't put them there.  Serendipity!

That tree is die cut from a sheet of SU balsa wood which I'm not sure they carry anymore, but it does work well with dies even as intricate as the tree.  

Okay, okay, quickly over to post at the Jingle Belles.  And now since I've shown you the header if you hadn't seen it yet, take a look at the rest of what's there by clicking here.  You know Lauren and Steph never disappoint with their wonderful creations.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

ICAD 2018 - Complete

It's the first day of August and I happy to say that I am officially done with ICAD for this year.  I did fall behind a couple of times, this last week being one of them, but I hunkered down and got them all finished.  As with any lengthy project, there were some days when I wasn't particularly inspired, but I did move forward with something to get to a total of 61 finished cards (62 if you count my title card).

Let me show you the last 5 days and then pictures of the cards from each month together.

57/61 - Twister
For no particular reason, I started twisting and saving the wrappers from straws I've gotten with various drinks these last two months.  I used some of them on this card.

Prima watercolors, twisted straw wrappers

58/61 - Favorite Color
Although it's my favoriet color, it's my least favorite card.  We were away for the weekend and although I had art supplies with me, I opted to try something simple by cutting strips of a paint chip and letters from the same chip.  I apologize BLUE.  It doesn't do you justice.  I will have to think about revisiting this one.

59/61 - Staple
My goal was a 1-Staple collage using some of the ephemera that I've accumulated this summer.  It was that coffee sleeve that put a monkey wrench into that - a little too thick for one staple.  I'm being honest here.  There are three staples holding this together.  Paint chip, coffee sleeve, lottery ticket (loser of course), candy wrapper, wristband, die cuts, and a snippet from the tag on some flowers we planted in our barrel at the condo (which unfortunately just recently were eaten by something).

60/61 - Wish
The words are from a song I think those of you from my generation will remember from the Wonderful World of Disney.  

Zig Brush Markers 

61/61 - Telescope
So as I said in my Facebook post on the ICAD page - 
It's time to leave Planet ICAD. The visit here has been eye-opening, encouraging, educational, and socially satisfying. My telescope points me in the direction of more artistic explorations. Until next year.................

Prima watercolors and gel pen

Here is the collection from the month of June.

And the month of July.

I keep my ICAD's in clear, zippered pencil pouches that I found at the $Tree (the polka dots are only on one side).  Every time I come across them in the store I always pick up one or two because they are perfect for holding these cards or supplies for other small projects and being that they're clear, I can see what's in them and they are protected from the elements.  Good to grab and go too.