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Monday Journal – Believe

I have been experiencing a bit of a lull in creativity lately.  I know that is normal and it brings to mind something Stephanie Lee said in an interview that it is kind of like breathing and is totally natural.  I am struggling to remember that as I am getting a little frustrated when I show up to the paper and nothing happens.  So, for this art journal session I decided to immediately start with a word on my page (which I usually tend to leave until the end) to force myself to BELIEVE that I will soon be able to exhale and have the inspiration come.

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It started slowly at first, added some pastel lines (filling them in), polka dots and dashes, then…

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I got totally into it and forgot to take pictures of the progress, haha.  I believed and this is what happened.  I was inspired by the cover of the book Creative Thursday by Marisa Anne.

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Kind of hard to back track as you can’t see some of the layers in the background but I promise there were some cool looking ink drops (that you can kind of get a glimpse of).  Lots of pastel and some rub-ons but mostly I wanted to point out that you don’t always need to use a stencil in it’s entirety.  Here I used sludge in only three sections of the Crafter’s Workshop stencil Peacock Pattern.

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I then used only one to give my balloon some texture.

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Love the simplicity of their faces and the blue glow I created around them (so they don’t compete with the busy background) with my True Blue Portfolio pastel.  I love how they go on like butter, so creamy.

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 Hopefully this means I am officially out of my rut.  Next week I think I am finally going to get with the times and do a video tutorial.  That way I won’t miss stuff.  Happy creating all XO.

Blossoming Love

Hi there, just wanted to give you a sneak peak and share the story of this commission piece I received last summer and thankfully the couple are friends of ours and there was no deadline.  I am sure they probably regretted saying that to me after all this time however, haha.

They handed me a bag of memorabilia from a trip to Japan they took many years ago and basically said “Here, do your thing”.  No guidelines, no colours, no timeline?  Most artists would love this but as I had a bag of precious momentos I was to create with, I was honoured and terrified all at the same time.

I started with putting the easiest thing down first, newspapers.  I love the look of them and didn’t have to cut them up.

Blossoming Love

I then dry brushed over them with a teal paint and added purple and white circles over top.

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Then my large scale wall panel that I use as a stencil with the Liquitex Spray Paint (which is great because you can use it indoors and it doesn’t smell).

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Next came using their ticket stubs for the tree trunk.  Then, I got stuck… for months and months it sat there.  This huge piece that sat in my dining room staring at me every time I walked by it in this ugly stage that I couldn’t get past.  Quietly urging me to take it out of it’s misery.  To make matters worse, I had a kids birthday party at the house and I had to get it off the floor to protect it and the only place that was big enough for it was above my couch in the living room.  Which put it in my sights even more.

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I finally decided to take control and bring it into the shop to force myself to get past the ugly.  I started working on the smaller branches and finally started to get excited about it again as it was finally starting to resemble the vision I had for it.

But alas, this didn’t last long as I started getting to the more personal stuff which I knew I needed to really cut into.  The hotel bills with their names on it, the e-mails about the trip, the little notes back and forth on things.  I felt a little bit like a voyeur but I realized that this time in their life was when their love blossomed and I am one of the lucky ones that got to witness it unfolding (without actually having been there).  I was already a huge fan of them both but it made me adore them that much more.  It was pretty cool but the guilt of cutting it up started to set in.  Luckily, the two of them happened to pop by the store, genuinely seemed to like the progress so far and insisted I keep going.  After all, that is why they gave it to me.  They wanted it out so they could see and enjoy it as opposed to it sitting in a drawer for years.

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Of course I had to do a cherry blossom tree because it was a trip to Japan and I turned the rest of the ephmera into flowers.  I mixed them up with traditional Japanese papers as well.

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In the middle of the tree trunk I wanted to add S + L in a heart but not all letters in English translate to Japanese.  Most translate into sounds and others don’t exist at all so instead I used the symbol for LOVE.

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Red is very much a colour associated with Asian cultures as it corresponds to fire (one of the earth elements), symbolizes good fortune and joy.  Which is why I chose to outline all the flowers with it but I used a Tattered Angels Glimmer Glam Paint because it is semi-opaque and you can still see all of the writing underneath.  I also got to use the coins they brought back for some of the centers.

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What’s next?  Put a bird on it (or two).  Scott who can talk to just about anyone is the more outgoing of the two so consequently has an open beak while Liz is the quiet strength behind the couple.

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Here is the finished piece I entitled “Blossoming Love”.  It seems far away because it is huge (yes, that’s what she said, haha)

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I hope they enjoy it as much as I enjoyed getting to know them better and making it for them.

Love Mini Album

Love Mini Album

The day of love is tomorrow :)  Just in case you were looking for something meaningful to throw together for a special person in your life, I thought I would share the love mini album I taught in class last night.

I picked my colour palette from an Echo Park paper pack called Sweet Day.  Then added a little craft and black throughout.

Love Mini Album1

The base of the album is all cardboard with a white wash over them.  I wanted to keep things simple as we only had about three hours to finish so the only paints I took out were my Ranger Adirondack Paint Dabbers in the colour palette.  I used them to make polka dots on one side and applied a tree trunk stencil in the same colour on the opposite side.  No brushes, no mess, it was great.

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 I didn’t want it to look too contrived so used different things for the numbers such as stamps, office stickers and Webster’s Pages Storytellers.  I also treated each layout as a separate piece.

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I used felt hearts, vintage buttons, blue graph paper to write on and black throughout to try and keep it a little more cohesive.

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I always have to use vintage papers in everything as well.

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Loving the little paper bags to use as pockets for the things that might not be for public consumption.

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 Hope you all have an amazing Valentine’s Day and are able to celebrate it with the people you love whether you are single or not.  After all, love is what makes your soul crawl out from it’s hiding place.

Crafty Chicks Love

Crafty Chicks

Welcome to the Crafty Chicks February Blog Hop!  We are a group of creative gals who met on the web and decided to come together and share our passion for paper crafting with you.

If you are coming from Heidi’s blog, welcome!

Since Valentine’s Day is just around the corner I thought I would make a Crafty Chicks Love mixed media piece.  I started with a 12″X12″ canvas and covered it with a vintage pattern and added some chevroness with a stencil.

Crafty Chicks Love

 Then I cut up 9 3″x3″ pieces from different patterned papers and added a couple different blues in paint with my “Hearts all Over” Penny Black stamp.

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 This piece certainly isn’t lacking any hearts as I added Donna Downey’s foam heart stamp with black paint then created another one with a vintage zipper I had laying around.  The zipper was a bit fussy on the curves but just make sure you really soak it with medium or Mod Podge to get it down.

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 Then one more heart in the hand of this lovely who I found in a Cosmo Cricket Element Deck.  I finished it off by stamping the word love onto it.

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Here it is in it’s entirety.  It is now available in the store for anyone wants to take her home.

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Our sponsor for this month is 3 Girl Jam!!

3girl

You can win a $25 gift certificate to get yourself some goodies from their shop.  To be eligible to win our fabulous prize you need to tell us the newest products released by 3 Girl JAM, so head on over and check it out.  Then indicate you have done so in the Rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 This is a full circle hop, so if you have started with me you should head to Piali’s Blog next and see her gorgeous project.

Monday Journal – Mixed Media Garden

With the new year here and the holidays over I thought it was time to get back into the routine and my weekly art journal creations to keep my creative soul in check.  This week I thought I would do a mixed media garden.

I always have pages with paint and stencil leftovers from other projects.  This one I had started at the Beyoutiful Souls retreat in Red Deer.  It was Lauren’s stencil and I just had to try it before I left.

Mixed Media Garden

I then added some tree patterned napkins and some dollar store tissue squares for my grass that I discovered thanks to Danielle Daniel.

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Then just stenciled over the tissue paper in a lighter green and added the pink lacey stencil on the left.

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I loved this flowery paper and colours so I just cut my blooms right from it.

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I then topped them with a perching Raven (whose beak should have been much longer, haha).

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This quote by Shakespeare has been especially speaking to me with the arrival of the new year.   “Expectation is the root of all heartache”.   I have realized all these expectations I have had with life and following my dreams haven’t exactly been all they are cracked up to be and have been causing some heartache.

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Which leads me to my word of the year which I have been carefully pondering so it will help guide me through the next year.  Stay tuned…

Monday Journal – Retreat Mixed Media

This past weekend was our first Beyoutiful Souls retreat in Red Deer.  I had such an amazing time and the ladies we had were all wonderful and just dug right in.  I will be doing a post on that later but luckily while I was there I got to have a little creative time in between teaching classes.  I wanted to commemorate the weekend so pulled out my journal and did a retreat mixed media layout.  It was hard not to with all of the art supplies and paper calling my name.

The circular mandala looking paper on the left is a napkin (just remember to remove the two backing pieces before gluing down) and the right teal blue piece is leather that I stitched right into my journal with a sewing machine.

Retreat mixed media

 I added some fabric strips to the far right side and a little bit of lace.  I feel every piece should always have a bit of black in it to ground it so I added black arrows and stenciled some numbers.

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 Love the imprint it left on my hand.

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 Of course I had to use our retreat stamps.  I have a little paper insert in between my two pages so here is the first side.

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 One of the girls at the retreat, Jodi, had the Golden Burnt Umber Glaze which I just had to try and immediately decided I must get some for myself.  It is great for aging and adding a vintage feel.  I just poured it on and rubbed it in.

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 Here is the other side when you flip over the paper insert.  A little piece of leather with a quote on it that was tucked under the butterfly.  I used this side to write the things that resonated with me over the weekend to remind myself and yes there is a bad word in there, haha.  We had a guest speaker on Friday night and it was one of things she said to us.

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Now back to reality, which is pretty great mind you since I get to see my kids and man tonight, but I will miss being submerged in creative goodness and spending time with Lauren, my retreat partner and soul sister.

Antler Mixed Media

Preparations for the store continues and I wanted to add some earthy antlers to the shop but since I am not a fan of taxidermy I thought I would make some antler mixed media pieces.  I got online and looked for a Canadian distributor for Carboard Safari.  They are a company that brings you “environmentally friendly, recycled cardboard creations” which you assemble yourself.  They come in white and brown.  A few even come in black.  The first one I did was called Buck Jr. and I decided to paint him in a teal.

Antler Mixed Media

Then I took my favourite mint spray from Heidi Swap with a flower stencil to give it a bit of dimension.

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So many pieces to these guys, you have to be careful putting them together not to bend the bits.

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For Fred the moose, I left the craft background and applied black Liquitex Spray Paint with the Crafter’s Workshop Stencil Quatrefoil .  I am loving this new spray product as it has all the convenience of a spray paint without the nasty odour.  It also washes up with water if you get it while it is still wet.

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The antlers on this one even curve forward a little.  The details on these are great.

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I bought a third (because always in odd numbers when it comes to design and balance) which is Micro Tex, the longhorn.  I wanted to leave one in the natural kraft colour and since this guy’s pieces were so tiny I figured it was the best choice.  He even has a little ear tag.

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Don’t they look adorable all together???

Monday Journal – With One Stamp

When I was at the Sugar & Spice retreat in June, I purchased a stamp set from Mindy Lacefield.  I have been dying to use it ever since.  I was itching to get creative so figured today was the day and I thought I would show you how to make two different images with one stamp from the set (to show you how to extend the use of your supplies).

I started with two sheets of deli paper painted using a Gelli Plate which I then stuck in my art journal with Mod Podge.  I am in love with this colour combination.

With One Stamp

I then covered them with pastels and paint pens.

With One Stamp1

Next, I took some of the images from the set and stamped them onto watercolour paper.   I love Mindy’s images, they are simple, childlike and can’t help but put a smile on your face.

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Then painted the faces with my Neocolor crayons and cut them out.

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One I made into a shy girl who likes to keep her hands in her pockets and the other…

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I turned into a bear.  Both bodies were also cut from the watercolour paper and I used my Faber Castell Pitt pens to colour them in.

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Here are the Care Free Spirits together.

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Endeavour to think outside the box when it comes to your stamps (use a leaf as a feather or circles as cobblestones on a path).

Hope you took some time to be creative on this fine holiday Monday!!

Bridal Shower – Park Mixed Media

A few weeks ago I had the great fortune of getting to teach at another bridal shower.  There were 15 guests and it was hosted by the maid of honour Laurie.  Laurie gave me a bit of information about the couple and one of the things that came up a few times was a nearby park so I took that idea and ran with it.  I layered down some vintage paper then started with my signature blue background.  This time I used my new Liquitex acrylic spray paint with a stencil.  So much easier then using my spray inks as I didn’t have to cover it with a sealant before continuing with other layers.

Park Mixed Media

 An outline of the park scene for the guests to follow.

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 Here is the lovely Krissie who made this all possible as she recommended me from having been at another shower I taught at.

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 Krissie also seems to be a bit of a baker, check out the adorable cupcake display she put on.  Such a great idea!

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 The maid of honour and bride to be, Amy, working intently.

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 Amy’s masterpiece, she even went and gathered rocks outside.  A girl after my own heart.

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 Some of her guests getting into the groove.

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 Coming together :)

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  Gorgeous paint all squeezed out and ready to be used.

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 Here is the park mixed media piece once the guests were done with it.

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 I then took it home, outlined it all, added a bit of stamping and finishing touches.

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 I always try and add a few inspiring touches into the paintings as well.

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I delivered the piece tonight and I hope the happy couple enjoys it as much as her guests enjoyed making it.

Art on the Road – Painting Rocks

I am never quite sure what to bring for art supplies when travelling so we can do art on the road.  I always feel like I am going to forget the one thing I really need.  For this trip out to the East coast I decided to keep it simple and just bring my Faber Castell Pitt Pens, my paint markers and pastels (and my art journals of course).

All of the girls are a little obsessed with collecting rocks so when I asked them to find me some flat oval rocks for a project, they were happy to oblige.

Art on the Road

Rock collecting on Kouchibouguac Beach.  Such a gorgeous place.  Isn’t Amelia’s bathing suit adorable?

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 The beautiful specimens they found and all are flat and smooth.  Well done girls!

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We used a mixture of different paint pens and they all worked pretty great actually.

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I just told the girls I wanted them to be inspiring (so I can scatter then all over our Beyoutiful Souls retreats) and off they went.  Even Amelia wanted in on the action.

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 This is our first batch of lovelies.  The girls had so much fun with this project they just wanted to keep making more.

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I am so glad it went as well as it did but I am a little concerned about the amount of rocks we are going to end up with by the end of this trip :)

Category: Mixed Media  Tags:  3 Comments