Saturday, March 28, 2009

True Colors swap - again

It has been quite a while since I had one of the books from the True Colors swap that I am in (before Christmas I think)

I just finished working on Nancy's "Neutrals with subtle pinks, blues and greens"

I browsed through my paper stash and found this "postcard" paper in my Photo Stack pack. I thought it fit the 'neutral' theme well and I love using writing as background.

I then began thinking about what would go with all those correspondences. What if someone was having a long-distance relationship?

So, I then began the search through my clip art cds for the perfect woman. I think she portrays a feeling of longing and hope.

The text is from Mahatma Ghandi: Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one's weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.

The butterflies were created in Photoshop Elements. They are from a set of butterfly brushes you can download for free here

I first created them in color then did a final layer in black to define the lines. I printed them onto transparency film and attached them to the pages by just their body using Crystal Lacquer.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Queen For A Day!

The latest Bad Baby swap? A mini book. The theme? Queen For A Day. Oh Boy! Wouldn't I LOVE to be a queen for a day!!!!!!!

First, to make the book, go Here

I used a page from my Far East mat stack. It was a bit thick but with a lot of heavy use of the bone folder, I think it will be ok. I cut the 12x12 page down to 9x12. I wanted a bit more space to art up then a 8 1/2x11 page gave me.

This is my cover. All the women in my book are from StoneHouseStamps. This woman is colored completely with colored pencils.

Pages 1 and 2. The dresses on both of these women were colored with watercolor pencils. On everything else I used regular colored pencils.

Pages 3 and 4. Everything but their skin is watercolored.

Pages 5 and 6, again, everything but her skin is watercolored. The bamboo and dragonfly are both from VivaLasVegaStamps.

I thought this was such a fun project. I was able to complete the entire thing in just a few hours. Now I have to send it off and will received someone else's ideas of what it means to be Queen for the Day.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

April Showers

I am still trying to get caught up on my sleep after 'springing forward' last weekend and can hardly keep my eyes open but I just had the urge to I did!

A few weeks back (a couple days after Tucker died) I bought a stamp of a silhouette of a line of bare trees. It just had a cold, empty feeling to it....kind of like how I was feeling....and I thought it would be great for a winter scene (which I am sure it will). But this evening, I looked at it and it demanded to be a row of Cherry Blossoms. (I'll bet it is going to be great in the fall too!)

I stamped my trees (Inkadinkado) in black in on a scrap of one of my Far East background papers. I then stippled on rose acrylics followed by pink and finally a tiny bit of white. I like how the texture of the paper shows on the trunks, I think it makes them have a softer feel, not so stark.

I used more of that Chinese newspaper, torn into pieces, for my ground. I brushed the edges with various shades of green water color pencil.

I stamped the girl (StoneHouseStamps) onto plain white cardstock (actually I use unruled index cards for these types of things--no visible texture, nice and white and a good weight).

I colored her using regular and water color pencils.

She was attached to the card using foam tape so she would stand out.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Retirement Card

A friend at work is retiring in a couple weeks (lucky girl!) so I made her a card.

This is the digital collage I put on the front of the card.

The "postage" frame is part of the Photoshop Elements 5.0 goodies. :-)

I found the champagne bottle in a Dover clipart book, scanned it, then did a light 'wash' over it to give it a tint.

The banner at the top is part of the Scrapbooking items already in Elements, I just added the text and although it is hard to see here, did a little shading where the ribbon bends to give it depth. Plus I added a drop shadow.

Happy Retirement Marsha!!!!!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Addie the Math Fairy

I took time the last couple nights to just play!

So here is Addie the Math Fairy....sure could have used her when I was in school!!!!!!

The background is a page from a child's math book (from an ephemera cd). To get the "creases" in the paper, I overlaid a layer of a man's handkerchief (from another ephemera cd) that had fold lines in it then decreased the opacity.

The girl and the bird were also from cds. I made separate layers for the girls dress and bow so I could color them.

Her wings are "brushes" that I added to a separate layer and then tinted.

The numbers came from my Scrapbook Factory Deluxe program.

As you can see, I was grabbing stuff from all over!

I had a blast messing around and trying out new things!

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Dark to Light

I kicked my husband out of the house this morning so that I could have peace, quiet and alone time at my art desk.

I had a few ideas floating in my head and a couple new stamps on my desk.

I have been feeling pretty low lately and after talking to my friend Diane, I want to try to really focus on positive things when the negativity starts swirling around in my brain.

This piece came out of that. It works from dark to light across the board.

I stamped the asian beauty (StoneHouseStamps) with permanent ink and colored her with pencils. She is an odd stamp in that her image is just cut off straight on both sides so I had to "hide" that if I wanted to use her in the middle of the piece. I found, in my stash, the gorgeous scrap of Japanese paper - grays, tans, gold, silver.

I had to pull out a tool that I have not used in years and stamp positioner! Do they even make those any more? I had purchased the "Japanese Maple" stamp (Penny Black) last week and was dying to try it out. I wanted the shadows from the branch to fall across the woman's face.

As you can see, I am still pulling out that ancient Chinese newspaper. I swear, I could use pieces of it every day and it would still be around 10 years from now LOL

The red background paper is from the Far East Mat Stack....lots of lovely papers in that assortment!

I added the swirly dragonfly (Magenta) and chop (Asian Woods) to the upper right corner. I lastly stamped the postage stamp from Technique Tuesday and colored with with watercolor pencils. Then I cut it out....all those little dents! and glued it to the lower right corner.

Now, to bring it all together -- I painted the leaves with Twinkling H2Os. (love those things!!!!) leaving the leaf shadows just plain ink. Using Walnut Stain Distress Ink, I darkened the left side of the piece. and finally, using Frost White Pigment Ink, I rubbed the entire right side.

It was so nice to be able to just sit and create. Now to find a place to display it (or anything else!) Someday I will post a photo of my art room. I have a friend that says it makes her claustrophobic as there is not a single inch of open space on the walls (or my desk top LOL)

Monday, March 02, 2009

Ode to Annette

A few weeks ago, while I was sick for a week with the flu, I spent a lot of time watching classic movies on tv.

One of those movies was Million Dollar Mermaid. It is the story of Australian swimmer Annette Kellerman. It is a gorgous Esther Williams movie!

The story of Annette Kellerman was a facinating one. A huge turning point for her career was when she was arrested, during a publicity stunt, for indecent exposure on a beach. She was wearing a one piece swimming suit.

If you get the chance, rent the movie....the scenes in the Hippodrome are fabulous!

This piece is another scrap of paneling from our bathroom remodel. I used porcelain crackle on it. When it was dry I rubbed it with a rough cloth and took off the crackles. I then used antiquing gel to give it a brown stain, darker at the bottom and getting lighter toward the top.

The quote is from a newspaper story of the trial as is the photo of Annette standing on the beach.

The stamp is from Tin Can Mail and looks as if it too could be Miss Kellerman. I colored it with Twinkling H2Os. I love the rich colors and shimmer of mica.