Monday, April 27, 2015

Movie Inspiration

 Here's looking at you kid!  So can anyone guess what movie recently inspired my latest art journal page??

 Here is the initial drawing on a gelli print deli paper background:

Guessed it yet?

 A glimpse of what was on my art desk:

 I'm usually working on more than one project at a time. On the left is a rough sketch of a portrait I plan on painting in my large journal. My green tea is nice and hot in the mug I got from the college our son went to ( DeSales University). It was important to keep it covered this time:)

 Here's the completed page:

  and the movie that inspired it?

                                                              BIG EYES!

 Have any of you seen it? A really good movie based on the art and life of Margaret Keane! Hubby and I wanted to see it at the movie theater but it only showed in select theaters and for a VERY short time so we missed it. However, I bought it last week hoping it was worth it- and it actually cost the same as it would have cost to see it just once at the movie theater! We both enjoyed it very much! It was directed by Tim Burton and starred Amy Adams as Margaret and Christoph Waltz as her husband Walter Keane. They both did an amazing job in their roles! I don't want to give any of it away but will say I was happy about the ending. Margaret was specifically known for her portraits of children with very big eyes, and I have always been partial to big eyes-people or animals:):) So of course I had to make my own attempt at a big eyed girl:)

 Have you seen any movies lately that have inspired you to make art?

 Joining everyone at T Stands For Tuesday hosted by Elizabeth and Bleubeard, Art Journal Journey hosted by Susi, the Simon Monday Challenge (anything goes),  Art Journal Every Day hosted by Julie Fei Fan Balzer, and Paint Party Friday hosted by EVA and Kristin.

                                           " The eyes are the windows to the soul."

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Purity, Patience, and Perseverance

 ...that's the title of my newest journal page:

 The background began by trying out new to me Gelatos. I scribbled several colors around the page then blended the colors using a light touch of gesso on a brush. Gelli print circles, dictionary page, black and white acrylic paint, Black Fine Line Sharpie Pen, red pen, charcoal pencil.

 My contribution to Art Journal Every Day, Art Journal Journey, and Paint Party Friday!

The new sketch for the Freshly Made Sketches challenge is this:

 And this is my card:

 Products: white, pink card stock; patterned paper; washi tape; Versafine Onyx Black ink; rubber stamp (studio g - Hampton Art); Grand Calibur die cut machine and Wonky Rectangle dies (Spellbinders); markers (Marvy); paper flowers (Recollections); brad (JoAnn Stores); clear glitter pen-Wink Of Stella (Zig); tiny stars -Nail Jewels.

 This card is for the Simon Wednesday Challenge which is "Clean and Simple" this week:

 You can see more of my stamped background papers and read about them in this post.
Products: white card stock; white paper doily; green felt; rubber stamp (Hero Arts-Small Greetings Set); lg. cling stamp (Impression Obsession-Ornate Floral); Prussian Blue Fluid Chalk ink (Clearsnap); Versafine Onyx Black ink (Tsukineko); paper flower (Recollections); Class a Peels Sticker (Stampendous).

  I just read THE best news the other day- Serena Barton has a new book titled "Wabi Sabi Painting With Cold Wax: Adding Body, Texture and Transparency to Your Art"  being released through Amazon on August 19, 2015!!  You can preorder it now:) Many of you know how often I refer to Serena when sharing my wabi sabi and/or Serena inspired techniques in various projects. I also just mentioned that I recently bought cold wax and oil paints to learn about using them-and voila- I will soon have Serena's guidance yet again :):) It's the very next best thing since she teaches at venues out of my reach, and I cannot wait!

 Have a fab weekend all-I will be around to visit, and I so appreciate your comments here. XO

 Leaving you today with the quote I used on my journal page:

    " Purity, patience, and perseverance are the three essentials to success, and above all, love."
                                                                                                       Swami Vivekananda

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Tuesday's Musings

   Here we are once again for another Tuesday to share our beverage of choice and anything else we want over at Altered Book Lover where Elizabeth hosts T Stands for Tuesday. I also want to wish


  We had an absolutely GLORIOUS weekend!! The sun shone brightly and it reached 82 F Saturday. The gas grill was thoroughly scrubbed, the grass got cut for the first time this season, the garden plot got tilled, I sat in the sun for just over an hour browsing thru magazines, and we even sat out until late with music and wine:) I hope you all had wonderful weather where you live too.

 Last week my friend LuAnn and I got together for a day of fun that included a stop at Hobby Lobby (just got some watercolor cardstock and two stencils), lunch at Panera Bread, and then the rest of the afternoon stamping up a storm!

One end of the table with my green tea

another view with LuAnn's lemonade

ready, set, stamp!

some of LuAnn's papers

some of my papers

this card has 4 layers of inks and stamping

I tried to capture the shimmer of the gold Pan Pastel we used on some of the cards.

 I just had to show this pattern-isn't it gorgeous??? This stamp belongs to LuAnn and it was my favorite! It's called Ornate Floral, and the stamped dots (done with gold Pan Pastel) is Scattered Dots. All of our new "Cover a Card " series of stamps are from Impression Obsession. I made two cards and listed more of the patterns here. We saw the demo at the stamp convention the other week and fell in love with the designs and technique! I did bring some of my older stamps but we never used them-the new ones were much more fun:)
 This is the easy technique:
 Stamp your first design onto card stock using a good juicy inkpad (the Fluid Chalk inks by Clearsnap are recommended and since I always buy reinkers with my stamp pads I reinked them all before stamping). Choose another pattern if you wish and stamp over the first one with another ink color. Lastly, stamp the last pattern (this pattern should be small in scale - like dots, or lines, a more open pattern if you will) using a Versamark inkpad (Tsukineko) over top. Sponge gold (or any color you prefer-but the metallic light gold is most versatile) Pan Pastel over the card and watch the magic! That's it. You certainly can use stamps you have on hand but these  large -about 5 3/4" x 5 3/4" stamps allow you to cover a piece of equally sized card stock. Perfect for creating quick custom designs in colors you wish to use on your cards.
 And my last artful offering today is this journal page:
                                                               "Spring in Provence"
 This is how it began:

 I had taken out the decorative napkin (seen in the finished page)) which I was planning on gluing to a blank page. I just happened to set it over my opened book and loved the way it looked over this gelli plate printed deli paper. The markings that showed through really added interest-and it made me think of a Spring rain in Provence. To bring out the imagery a bit more I used a fine point black Sharpie pen and lightly sketched over the shapes on the napkin. Ahh, to really be there in the springtime...
 Linking to the Mixed Media Monthly Challenge #11 for the theme of "April Showers", and to Mix It Monthly for the theme of "city/village" .
 Have a great day, and a happy Earth Day Wednesday!
 " Those who contemplate the beauty of the Earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts."      Rachel Carson


Thursday, April 16, 2015

Where Joy Resides

 As Spring is moving in quickly and the temps are warming I am spending less time inside. Finally, walking days are here again! That brings me joy, along with too many other things to list. What brings YOU joy?? Another thing that brings me joy is art, which is why I decided to blog a few years ago. To share my art-my love of cards, and mixed media. To connect with other artists. So, on with the art...

 Earlier this week my friend LuAnn and I got together for a day of chit chat, a stop at Hobby Lobby, and a few hours of arting together! We made lots of background papers using new stamps and techniques we got from a recent stamping/scrapbook/ paper arts convention we went to. I'll have more pics to share next post. But here are cards I made using two of the stamped papers I made:

 I used this week's sketch design at Freshly Made sketches:

 Products used on my cards: ivory, blue, light green card stock; greetings (Papertrey Ink-Mega Mixed Messages); background stamps (Cover a Card series by Impression Obsession- Lotus, Wavy Lines, Scattered Dots, Flower Burst, Small Quatrefoil); Colorbox Fluid Chalk Inks ( Aquamarine, Lime Pastel, Sea Crystal, Tangerine, Rouge - Clearsnap); Class a Peels stickers (Stampendous); paper flowers (Studio G); sewing machine and thread.
 Linking to Freshly Made Sketches,  and the Simon Wednesday Blog Challenge for the theme this week of " make your own background".
 Another love of mine is Ireland. I've never been there. There are no family connections that I am aware of. Yet, the people and music and land are etched in my soul for some reason. I recently attended yet another Celtic Thunder concert-one of THE BEST ever and just had to create a journal page.
 It began like this:

The finished page:

                                  Ireland...  I kept dreaming it, and one day I really was there...

 A detail pic showing some of the texture:

 This was painted using techniques by Serena Barton from her book Wabi-Sabi Art Workshop-which I have mentioned many times. It truly was an eye opening look into a special place for my art that I hadn't known existed. So, my sincerest gratitude to Serena! Materials used-magazine cut outs, reinker glazes, acrylic paints, molding paste.

 Linking to Art Journal Every Day, Express Your Creativity, and Paint Party Friday.

 Another question to ponder-have you ever felt a connection to a place not knowing why? Have you done any art to reflect it? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

 Of course, I couldn't end this post without this beautiful song of Ireland done by...Celtic Thunder!

  "Find out where joy resides, and give it a voice far beyond singing. For to miss the joy is to miss it all."      Robert Louis Stevenson  


Monday, April 13, 2015

Crazy For Birds!

 Things are exciting around these parts as spring is finally here! It was a gorgeous 75 F today :) Patio furniture is out, more bird feeders are up including a hummingbird feeder. New is a thistle feeder and already I have a bright yellow pair of goldfinches enjoying it. Not only am I enjoying those birds, but looky here at what else I have been thoroughly enjoying:

                                                                    I am totally

                                                                  in LOVE

                                   with this new Bird Crazy stamp set!!!

  This set is designed by Tim Holtz for Stampers Anonymous.There are 6 birds in all, though I've only shown 3 so far. I was so disappointed not to see them at the convention I was at the other week. I couldn't get them out of my head so I caved and ordered them. I got them from Simon Says Stamps-which is a great online source for a gazillion products related to stamping and scrapbooking!They arrived on the weekend and I have been in the middle of such a creative frenzy playing with new stamps and supplies lately! (This is why my online class has not been progressing so quickly).  And  this is perfect for the Simon Monday Challenge blog theme this week which is "in the middle".
  The images were stamped on 90 lb. watercolor paper using Jet Black Staz-On ink. They were colored in with Peerless watercolors. I added some marks with a white pen. Edges are assorted torn washi tapes. Note cards are DCWV.

  In order to keep the mojo going I've had my morning coffee fix, and even made a batch of blueberry pancakes recently:

  And FYI- I only ate two-hubby had the rest:) I also brought out my very favorite spring mug with my favorite flower (the red poppy) painted on it. Joining in with Bleubeard and Elizabeth and the gang at T Stands for Tuesday. Come along and see what everyone is sharing there!

 That's it for today. Planning on a get together with my friend LuAnn this week so we can play with more of our new purchases from the convention:)

" Everyone likes birds. What wild creature is more accessible to our eyes and ears, as close to us and everyone in the world, as universal as a bird."         David Attenborough



Thursday, April 9, 2015

Back to Art

 Due to the Easter holiday festivities, along with other things, I was unable to get any art done so I missed some of my favorite groups and challenges last week. It was hard not have my art time but I'll be making up for it-especially with more new supplies!

  I was thinking of this month's challenge at Mix It Monthly (City/Village), Art Journal Journey's challenge for this month (favorite poems/quotes), and the upcoming Earth Day holiday on April 22 when I came up with this page. The quote is by Graham Hancock. The background is a gelli plate printed paper, the "earth" is a gelli plate print on deli paper. I do not have any of the circles gelli plates but you can read about how I made my circle prints in this post. Other supplies: International Skyline rubber stamp (Hero Arts), wood veneer figures (Studio Calico), Jet Black ink Staz -On(Tsukineko).
 Recently my order from Dick Blick arrived. Many thanks to Paint Party Friday for the generous GC I won! Of course I added a bit more-how could I resist?
 Here's my new stash:
 I have never worked on wood boards and wanted to give it a go. Three bottles of ink, Liquitex slow-dri blending medium, and Gamblin cold wax medium and a set of student grade oil paints. I have been dying to try my hand at oil and cold wax painting using the wabi-sabi style I so love but I want to learn before buying the expensive paints. If any of you have any kind of links or tips I 'd SO love for you to share! I heard that Serena Barton has a new book coming out and will share techniques on this but I don't know if I can wait until late summer:):) I have looked at some You-Tube vids and websites but haven't found the basic answers about collaging papers with it and whether or not you buff it to finish.
 Linking the above art to Paint Party Friday and Art Journal Every Day too.
 I also got one card made for the Simon Wednesday Challenge (April Showers and/or Spring Flowers theme) and the Freshly Made Sketches Challenge which is to use this sketch:
 This is my card:

 Products: card stock (Coredinations); patterned card stock (Basic Grey); die cut tag(Colorbok); clear stamp (Papertrey Ink-Think Big Favorites #3); Versafine Onyx Black ink (Tsukineko); lg. paper flower (The Paper Studio).

 That's it for today. Looking forward to catching up with everyone again!

" Don't underestimate the power of your vision to change the world. Whether that world is your office, your community, an industry or a global movement, you need to have a core belief that what you contribute can fundamentally change the paradigm or way of thinking about problems. "
                                                                                                                    Leroy Hood


Monday, April 6, 2015

A Toast To Spring Temps-Finally!

 It was another busy time the last four days but first I have to tell you that finally-today- it was HEAVENLY!!! The sun was shining, it wasn't windy, and we got to 72 degrees F late this afternoon!

 The real excitement began Friday afternoon though. We had tickets for, yes, another Celtic Thunder show in town! So of course Bill and I went to the Sands and walked around early afternoon to see if we'd spot any of the members before the evening show:):) And look who we found:

 Ryan Kelly!! Don't mind the weird look on my face-I wasn't expecting hubby to take a photo. Ryan even remembered us and that Bill was a runner too and they talked a bit about running through Bethlehem. Just the nicest most humble and kind person-and he is a huge animal lover :) We also met  the music director and the main guitar player. We hung around awhile then went home before returning for the concert. And it did not disappoint!!!! The Very Best of Celtic Thunder Show was that ....and more!!! We had 4th row center seats but even that didn't satisfy me at the end so I moved up to the 2nd row aisle to an empty seat so I could get up and dance to the last song with them (no, I didn't get thrown out ;).

 Saturday Bill and I drove into a neighboring town to find our way . You see, I got a summons in the mail for jury duty. When I read it my BP spiked -not good- and it took quite awhile to bring it back down. This is NOT something I ever wanted to do. Nothing like being told parking is scarce-esp. when you're by the prison AND in a questionable area! We mapped it out and I'll be prepared to go this Tuesday although I won't know if I have to show up until later tonight. Which is why I'm posting now. If I get called in I will get around to everyone later Tues. or Wed. Edited In- I have been excused from jury duty-YAY!

 For my T Stands For Tuesday gang I have this to share:

 Nothing like a good cup of coffee - in the Easter mug my Mom bought me some years ago- along with a treat- a cheesecake cupcake! It's actually supposed to have toasted coconut and 3 mini Cadbury chocolate eggs on it. However, no one would eat the coconut, and I sent the eggs home with my chocoholic son before realizing I didn't take a picture. I'll share the RECIPE AT THE END OF THE POST. It was the first time I made it. Easy. Delicious. It makes 18 cupcakes. They freeze well.

 A small art contribution:

 I recently found a printed page of four arch collages I had left from a swap through the Paper Whimsy art group. The original piece was copied and printed (all imagery and sentiments Paper Whimsy). Edges were sponged with Distress Vintage Photo ink. Bird stickers are Paper House Productions. Flowers-Prima Marketing. Class A Peels stickers-Stampendous. They are approx.
3 1/2" w by 4 5/8" h. I'll be sending them out as happy mail. Linking to the Simon Monday Challenge (theme is- "A is for".) And my A is for arches!

 Wishing you a great rest of the week! See you soon.

" They may have bad weather in Ireland but the sun shines in the hearts of the people and that keeps us warm."       Marianne Williamson

                                                Philadelphia Easter Mini Cheesecakes

 1 c. graham cracker crumbs       3/4 c. plus 2 Tbsp. sugar, divided             3 Tbsp. melted butter

 3 pkg. Philadelphia Cream Cheese (8 oz. each), softened      1 tsp. vanilla          3 eggs

 1 c. plus 2 Tbsp coconut      54 mini chocolate eggs

 Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Mix graham crumbs, 2 Tbsp sugar and butter; press into the bottoms of 18 paper lined muffin cups. Beat cream cheese, vanilla and remaining sugar with mixer until smooth. Add eggs one at a time on low speed until blended.  Spoon over crusts. Bake 25-30 min. or until centers are almost set. Cool completely. Refrigerate 2 hrs. Top each cheesecake with  1 Tbsp. toasted coconut and the 3 mini chocolate eggs.
 Notes- I used 1/3 less fat cream cheese. I think adding mini chocolate chips to the batter would be a great addition! For the summer months add a spoon of blueberry, strawberry or cherry compote on top:)