Tuesday, August 30, 2016

My Newest Collection

Today I am guest posting on the Spellbinders blog and continuing to share the release of my newest collection of dies, stamps and die & stamp sets. These were all designed with flexibility in mind. They are abstract in nature so that you can truly make them your own. Each of the new items works equally well in mixed media projects, art journaling, card making or scrapbooking. And they are all designed to work together and to mix & match with my first release from Spellbinders as well as my stencils from StencilGirl and stamps from Impression Obsession.

Head over to the post to see some of my favorites from the release, artwork that I have made using the stamps and dies, and a series of hints to help you take these commercial products designed by somebody else (in this case, me) and make them uniquely your own.

And please note that some of my new artwork pictured here is available now for purchase in my online shop, with additional items being added soon.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

The Week Links: 115

Join me every Sunday when I share some of my favorite links I discovered in the previous week. Earlier posts in the series can be found here.

And here is Week 115...

1. These black and white photos from Rene Maltese taken in France in the 1950s are a combination of a great eye and perfect timing.

2. Fall 2016 color report via Design Sponge.

3. Food art from Diego Cusano, first seen here on I Need a Guide.

4. Veronica Funk shares 6 ways she finds inspiration.

5. Stuart Haygarth collected and arranged trash from England's shores.

6. Absolutely in love with the objects Shannon Weber makes from natural material (thanks to Robyn Gordon for the link).

7. Flashback Link 2011: Sign Language. Fascinating to see how, where and if artists sign their work, as evidenced by these masterpieces found at Sotheby's auction house.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Documented Life Project 2016

Excited to be a featured artist for the Documented Life Project 2016. 

This year, DLP is focused on the unPlanner and is all about simplicity. The brief was to create a Pocket Art Card measuring 2.5 x 3.5 inches using my favorite number as the theme. You can read more about the project here and see my step-by-step tutorial below.

I started with a playing card...

I added a layer of black gesso to the surface...

Using PaperArtsy Fresco Finish Chalk Acrylics, I covered the surface with a variety of colors...

I adhered pieces of my Spellbinders Drip Drop die cut, and outlined them with a black gel pen to make them pop. I also used the gel pen to add a border to the edge of the card...

Given my love of circles, the number 8 has always been special to me. Using rub-ons, I embellished the card with several 8s...

The back of the card, also painted with black gesso, is now waiting for journaling, listing or plannering.


Click here to see projects from both guest artists and your DLP hosts.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Make it Your Own: 2

One of my favorite parts of teaching is watching how every participant creates artwork that is truly their own. At the end of every workshop, no two pieces are the same.

I also find it exciting when I come across artwork online that incorporates my product lines. Seeing how different people use these items in such creative ways is always inspiring. I love the wide variety of styles and unique choices. Click each link below for more details on each and click here to see other posts in this series.

(StencilGirl Products The Time Stencil)

(Spellbinders Pocket Watch Die Set)

(StencilGirl Products Stencils Discovery, Explore, Transform)

(Spellbinders Drip Drop Die Set)

(Spellbinders Drip Drop Die Set)

Jenny Marples
(Spellbinders Robo Square Die Set; Impression Obsession Stamps Sets Pattern Play, Solar System)

(Spellbinders Splatter Proof Die Set)

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Take the Leap

I wrote the following to a response to a question I received by email. As I was responding, it occurred to me that there are likely to be many people out there in Blogville that may be dealing with the same thing...

A number of years ago I spent more time holding on to rather than using my finds. And I had a lot of finds. One day I realized that the only reason I had even collected all the stuff was that I wanted to make art. It wasn't because I wanted to be a collector. I knew that I wanted to make the best art that I could and it struck me as odd that I wasn't using the best ingredients that were right by my side.

So I decided to just take the leap and use several of my most favorite pieces that I had held on to for years. And as a result of being more comfortable with this, my art improved. Does everything work out and look good? Absolutely not. But without risk there is no reward and giving myself permission to use my good stuff made me a better artist in the long run. This one choice has made me more willing to take creative risks.

So I say, jump in the deep end and just go for it.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Create Random with Abandon

One of my favorite aspects of mixed media is the freedom that this approach to art offers. Anything goes and no supply or technique is off limits. This looseness allows me to create without thinking - a process that has made my art less constricted and more organic. And as an artist who tends toward linearity, this has transformed my work greatly.

Certain projects, such as bookbinding, require sustained concentration and a good deal of focus. Making a mixed media surface, on the other hand, often ends up better when the artist creates without conscious effort. I call this getting into the creative zone. You know, the one where time passes and your forget the rest of the world.

When we overthink as artists, we hand out inner critic a megaphone and end up with negative thoughts: "This isn't coming out the way I want it to. I cannot paint as well as...(insert the name of every other artist ever seen online). If I go any further I will ruin it." It's hard to imagine feeling the creative burn with these types of thoughts running through our heads.

The solution is to create random with abandon.

-Focus less on how the artwork will come out and more on enjoying the process. 

-Recognize that there's no law that says any layer along the way needs to look good.

-Let each layer guide you to your next move, rather than having a preconceived notion as to how the final piece should look.

-In other words, let go and create without thinking.

This process is what my workshop 52 Card Pickup is all about. For those of you who are interested in learning to create random with abandon, this workshop is now available in the Interweave store as an immediate download or a DVD. You can also purchase the DVD directly from my online shop.

For a taste of what you will find, head to this post on the Cloth Paper Scissors blog for a step-by-step tutorial culled from the project. Or take a peek at this segment from the recording.

And whatever you do...don't overthink!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

The Week Links: 114

Join me every Sunday when I share some of my favorite links I discovered in the previous week. Earlier posts in the series can be found here.

And here is Week 114...

1. Dale vN Marshall helps to raise awareness of mental health issues in the young. First seen here on Creative Boom. 

2. Jill Ricci layers decaying paper, graffiti, and text to create visual beauty.

3. Excited to see that the film The Journey is the Destination, about the life of Dan Eldon, is premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival in September.

4. Ventricle - an installation at the Royal Festival Hall in London for the Festival of Love.

5. Street artist Ernest Zacharevic creates site specific installations that interact with urban structures.

6. Would love to see Peter Blake's exhibition Alphabets, Letters & Numbers at De La Warr Pavilion at Bexhill on Sea on the south coast of England.

7. Flashback Link: 2010. Revelations of My Friends. Think Mad Libs from the early 20th Century.