Saturday, April 29, 2006

Late Night/Early Morning Collage

I started this piece last night (I've been mulling it over for weeks) and I was compelled to just get a version of it out in the world. My photo choices were a little limited. I originally pictured this with a baby but I came across the little girl who looked very sweet and I loved the idea of her playing with a wand and creating shooting stars and flowers.

I started the piece with gesso, paint and paper border. All of that dried overnight and this morning I added gel medium and the silver paint. Again, drying time that for once I didn't try and push. I started adding the images and art bits and called it done once I had the floral images on. For some strange reason, I love all my pieces that have something floral. I guess for me, I know it's finished when a cabbage rose has been added!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Friends Collage

Just a reminder that sometimes our best friends have 4 legs and not two. I love my puppies (100lbs each so allowances have to be made with the term puppies!) and they bring some of the best love and comfort, especially when you didn't even know you needed it. I made this collage tonight not quite sure where it was going but I found the vintage picture and kept adding until I was relatively happy with it. I still struggle with knowing whether to keep going or to back off so next time, maybe I'll keep adding until it's 3-d on top of 3-d!

So tonight be sure to tell any furry companions how much you appreciate them... They'd do it for you! :)

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Scrap bracelets

So, as you know, I've been trying to do a project everyday just something creative to help keep me from climbing the cube walls at the office (I'm short so this is more of a probability than for you guys who can easily peer over them) so I had a few bits and pieces left over from jewelry projects and the pin-up girl collage mirror I made for a friend. Somehow, I had the perfect piece of scrap silk cord ... such a pack rat, a bottle cap with diamond glaze well hardened and the exact number of black beads to make a fairly sharp pin-up girl bracelet, which I love and have worn to said cube office.. no one noticed, but I felt a little scandalous so it was a little extra spice to the day.

The other bracelet is more romantic and goes with the 3-strand necklace with the jasper teardrop I made. Again, the fates were with me as I had the right number of diamond crystals and smoky quartz to match the pattern. Now I can be refined and elegant or sassy and spunky ... well, I'll settle for well-accessorized.

I still have a few new soldering projects with more mini-collages and a larger piece I want to make with the theme of "soul sisters". There are a lot of women through the years that have inspired me from the women in WW II who flew bombers from factories to the front lines to Mary Wollstonecraft and the suffragists who marched on Washington. But more than that, it's women who have done the same tasks everyday since before we had fire that I want to think about and somehow bring together in art piece.

In the meantime, I found some great vintage beads from 40's that would look great in a necklace!

Monday, April 24, 2006

Birthday Card

This is a b-day card and ATC I made for my sister-in-law. I really hope she likes Paris and France! I may have gone a little overboard with the collaging but I'm doing it in 10 minutes or less... inspired by Claudine Hellmuth's quick collage to get my card in the mail (her birthday is Thursday and it must travel 2 states. I'm hoping for the best!) pretty quickly I decided on a French theme and away I went. Hopefully she'll like it, it's certainly not Hallmark! I added an ATC for her that she can pull out of the pocket on the card as an extra surprise.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Birthday loot

I met a friend for dinner last week, she's a great friend who's amazingly talented, and she went a little nuts for the b-day gift. Seriously, I've got the pictures to prove it! She gave me a bag filled with really lovely beads and crystals and I've gone a little nuts with it all.

I made a 3 strand necklace that is really pretty, if I do say so myself, but the beads really did all the work. All of the beads and crystals are shades of white, pink, black and gray (if you don't count it as a shade of black). I love how it all works together with different textures and colors. The hubby was very skeptical as I was putting it all together but he came around in the end. I still want to make a few soldered pieces to add as pendants to some beaded pieces but I'm having time management issues again. I love my new job but the commute is still a beating and when I get home I want to veg out or go to the studio for a few hours... hard to do when you have a bed time! :) Oh well, it'll work out. Maybe I'll try to figure out a way to do art riding the train downtown. How many odd looks could I get?

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Mail Fairy

I finally got my swaps from the jewelry swap I did a few weeks ago and I got some amazing things. Two pins and a pair of earrings all made using vintagey type images which I love. The pin made of fabric is especially gorgeous. It's very romantic and remains me of Pride & Prejudice for no good reason but there you go.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Necklace with collage

I used one of my charm frames from Art Chix to make a necklace with some wooden beads I just got. I had hoped to incorporate some golden rice pearls but that didn't work out and after fighting to string the tiny seed beads I decided to stick with the straight forward approach. I was also have trouble getting an up close photo of the image so I decided to quit while I was ahead. 5:00 am is going to be here soon so I'm heading to bed.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Buddha at a fuzzy angle

Here's another collage I made this weekend. I was playing around with color and texture but Buddha isn't translating as well from the scan as I hoped. I may need to try it with the camera. I like the background but I didn't get a good balance with the mail elements. I tend to like things very sparse or way overboard. I'm working on finding the good middle ground...

Again, I used a mix of acrylic glazes on a gessoed canvas. I used one of my favorite text stamps to create the words and then the red dragonfly stamp was used with the colorbox chalk stamps... fyi, the ink really doesn't want to dry. I had to use the heat gun and a little clear embossing powder. I love the colors but really need to work on the composition.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Some days are easier than others

I inadvertently took a little art break by becoming swamped at work and by non-art life. I managed to get a couple of collage pieces done but I'm not sure how happy I am with them. I wanted to make something really fun and spring/summerish with memories of school almost being out and 3 months of freedom to ride bikes, swimming in the creek and eating homemade ice cream while chasing fireflies. I don't think I got there, but it was something different and kind of fun. I used acrylic paint and glaze on a gessoed canvas then wrote all my great summer memories in a word list with a sharpie. I rounded it off with a collaged ice cream cone. I added ribbon and some glitter and pronounced it festive.. not what I have in my mind, but fun with the sharpie was had!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

LA Necklace

I bet this necklace when I was in LA a few years ago and loved it but it was too small and I wasn't sure how to re-cord it so I tricked it up with jump rings and a clasp that I hated. But now, it's great and back in the form I got it in but in my size! I found some leather cord last night and just played around with tying knots and turns out, it was really easy and I'm kicking myself for having let it go so long! Now I know, knots in leather cord easy figuring out I need to try new things... harder. :)

Tuesday, April 11, 2006


Okay, I was a little cranky when I started this but blogger losing my post has just verified that I'm now justified in my crankiness. I took it out on my sweet little ATC that was waiting for more romantic and whimsical touches. Instead, it's a little more cranky as well! There's always room to believe that the sweet little couple in the corner really did find true love...

I have no reason for crankiness except a fairly serious sunburn that's been plaguing me since I played in the herb garden on Sunday. My very sweet husband did drive all over Dallas to find homasote for me so I no longer burn my desk, wood blocks and cutting board while playing with the soldering iron. He's a very sweet man and a good reason to not be cranky!

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Birthday recovery

I had a great birthday weekend. Dinner at Jasper's was lovely and my salmon was cooked perfectly. My gifts added up to a fortune in gift certificates to the bookstore, I have 3 shipments coming in the mail... online is much less expensive, and still a little saved back for upcoming new releases! I worked in the yard today and scorched my upper arms and shoulders so I need to remember to put on the sunscreen!

I did manage to get a few things done in the studio. I re-worked a bracelet I had made previously into a necklace and I love the new version of the materials. I used Chinese porcelain beads in turquoise and red with alternating black jade. I also made a longer necklace with howlite and inexpensive beads from the discount store. You can really stretch materials when you alternate pricier items with less expensive ones and it makes the less pricey items look better. With all my new clothes for the new job, I wanted to have some unique jewelry to dress up the relatively stuffy business attire.

My friend, and new boss, saw my ATC I made for my b-day and declared that she too wanted art so I made the ATC for her. She's an amazing artist who used to work in costuming for films, theater, etc so I had to use my corset stamp. I layered it over an earlier version of the stamp in chestnut to give it the look of actually being on a dress form. I really struggled with what else to include so I left it simple with just text. Also, she's one of the strongest people I know so I wanted to just give her a little push to reminder she doesn't have to do it all herself. I hope she likes it.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Expand Your Horizons

This is the message of a new ATC I made for myself for my b-day... well, it's tomorrow but I want to be able to hang it up in my cube at work. I want something that it's pretty and arty but also a reminder to get out there and take some risks. It's ok to make a fool of yourself and try something new! I think it turned out really well and love that it's all girlie with flowers and poofy ribbon... it's a very cute and cuddly tough love!

The hubby's taking me out to a snazzy restaurant for my birthday, but not too snazzy to have individual macaroni and cheese in cast iron skillets! I'm going to wear my still pretty new cowgirl shirt with sequins (by Vanilla Sugar which is my new favorite brand) with a black silk skirt that swirls if a twirl... not that I would twirl or anything. Anyway, I was inspired to channel my inner cowgirl after reading Deb Trotter's art blog ,which is fabulous, and watching a little too much Paula Deen on the food network!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Madonna Altered Book

Madonna in the Madonna sense not Madonna "I have cones for breasts" kind of way... anyway, this is an altered book I worked on a while ago that is one of my favorites that I'm thinking of submitting to Somerset Studio. I have a couple of concerns.

First, I just don't know if I'm good enough. To a certain extent, that's ok and I just want to get better and be more challenged but on the other hand, no one likes to be rejected. I take it personally and mope for a while before the husband finally calls me on it and slink back to the art room. Obviously, I need practice with rejection and building up the thick skin (do I get any points for admitting it? I've heard that's important... I want credit... see, never ending cycle here!).

Second, if a piece gets accepted why should that make me feel validated. Why isn't it enough that I like what I create, other people I know (some not even related to me!) like what I create. What's up with the need for outside validation?

So, while I pose that question I've uploaded the cover image for your perusal not that you would in any way be enabling the outside validation... Oy, I get a few extra hours of sleep and look what happens!

Monday, April 03, 2006

Daylight savings time

... is kind of a beating! I'm wiped out so nothing great on the art front. On a fun note, I got my first b-day gift certificate and ordered some great new mysteries I've had my eye on for a while so those should be coming in this week in time for my b-day on Friday. Yay!

I'm heading of to bed, hope you guys had a good Monday!

Sunday, April 02, 2006


I've been swamped with work and have gotten a little behind on my blogging. Sorry about that! I need to work on the altered journal that I want to do in the Bohemian theme (whether or not I send it in is entirely different!) but I've been doing a little procrastinating and played with my beads and charms instead. Today I created two new necklaces, one of which is made with three strands joined by a connector, that I'm pretty happy with but still, even for me, this was a procrastination project to avoid the altered book. Hopefully I've done a few pages in it by this evening. In the meantime, here are the necklaces I made.

On a different note, when I showed the 3 strand necklace to my husband when it was in progress he said he would reserve judgment until it was done... not the best comment to hear mid-stringing project. When I finished, I went outside to show it to him. His follow up commentary was that it sparkled. Clearly not his favorite work!