Tuesday, March 24, 2015

The Many Faces of Ed ~ Part 2 of my RSD altered board book

Hi all. Last week I posted about the first three spreads in my altered child's board book featuring Rick St. Dennis' hilarious cats. Today I am sharing the next three, leaving three more to go. The theme of this book concerns itself with a cat named Ed who loves various activities all containing the word CAT followed by Ed. The first three spreads featuring Intoxi-Cat-Ed, Domesti-Cat-Ed, and Compli-Cat-Ed can be seen here.

The first two page spread I completed for the next set stars the fabulous Sushi image. This guy in his fabulous kimono was coloured with Prismacolor pencils. His fur was coloured in layers of short choppy strokes to resemble fur. He was fussy cut leaving a white border and then matted with black cardstock for strength and contrast with the background.

The background was done by scribbling two tones of purple Neocolor II watercolor crayon over the gessoed background and then activating it with water. The edges were deepened with purple gelato smudged with a finger. Red Geranium Archival ink was sponged through a harlequin stencil in several places. The pattern was then outlined on the left with black paint and on the right with white coloured pencil. Doilies and a tiny sushi menu were layered over the background. Washi tape and a metal fork as well as the black sticker letters spelling Sophisto-cat-Ed were also adhered. A border was painted with black (pens don't like gelatos) and then  a small leaf stamp was used to add gold embossing in three places. The edges were inked with black Big Brush pen like all of the other pages.

The next spread features Bar-B-Que with his funny little skewer of two mice and veggies, This image was completed in the same manner as the first one: Prismacolor pencils, fussy cutting, black matting. he was coloured like my cat Molly who reluctantly posed for me.

The background of this spread was done first with three colours of Neocolor II crayons, and then sponged over the top with 3 similar colours of Fresco Finish paint. Blue gelato deepened the edges and black paint was used to add a faux stitched border. White Embossing paste was scraped through a chevron stencil. Stamping was added using Forget-Me-Not and Jet Black Archival inks.

The background "papers" were actually cut from some large stickers which have been in my stash forever...love the little XO detail. I am making a point of using up things I have had for ages...like the puffy scrolls and circles that I also added to the mix. The stickers spelling Dupli-Cat-Ed (two mice on the skewer) as well as the two 2s were adhered before the edges were inked with black Big Brush pen.

The third spread allows Dave to be the star surrounded by Fred and Eek, two of Rick's mouse images. This Ed was also coloured with Prismacolor pencils, fussy cut , and matted with black.

The background was created with yellow and orange Neocolor II crayons activated with water and then repeated for more intense colour. The edges were sponged with orange and yellow Fresco Finish paint to deepen them without the use of gelatos. White embossing paste was added through a punchinella stencil and stamping of text was done with Orange Blossom Archival ink. Drywall mesh was adhered in a few places as well as a scrap of checked paper to serve as a picnic blanket. Ed was enjoying his sandwich so much that we can hear his eating noises which were stamped with Jet Black ink.

The lettering for Masti-Cat-Ed was added and then emphasized with strips of ink sprayed scraps from another project. Three paint dots were added to each strip. A doodled border, a black arrow, and black Big Brush pen edging finished this spread.

And there you have it, the fourth, fifth, and sixth spreads in The Many Faces of Ed. Thanks so much for popping by. The Eds and I appreciate that.  Stay tuned for  last three double pages as well as the finished cover...can't wait to play with them :)

Life is good; so is art.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Sweet Pea Stamps Facebook Progressive Challenge ~ Zentangle Elephant

Hi there. With the 23rd of each month comes the beginning of the next Progressive Challenge on Sweet Pea Stamps Facebook group. This time it's Part 2 which means that all those who played along with Part 1 will also get to play along with this one. If you played, you received this  adorable Zentangle Elephant image by Courtney McAnsh. If you didn't play, you can still join in this time because the image is available at Sweet Pea Stamps. It's a treat to play with!

I coloured her with Prismacolor pencils using all of the bright colours I could grab. I fussy cut her and then matted her with black cardstock to help her stand out against a colourful busy background. Foam squares were added to her backside and she was set aside to await her new home.

The background began as a 6x8 sheet of mixed media paper which I sprayed with Starburst's Hag's Wart Orange, California Poppy Gold, and Hottie Patottie Hot Pink. I allowed the inks to dry and then strengthened the colours, this time adding drips and splats from the over-spray  Pattern was added over these layers with a TH circles stamp and Magenta Hue Archival ink. The black mat was cut to fit the background and then the background was cut into 4 sections and trimmed to allow some black to show through between them.

Black embossing paste was applied through TCW's Mini Punchinella stencil. A banner was added using black and white baker's twine and canvas pennants. Once it was adhered to the background< the sweet Elephant was placed so she was walking across the top of it. Because Ellie is so unusual and celebrates that, I decided that the message I wanted was Unique or You-nique. TH Ransom Alphaparts letters were adhered and dotted with a white paint pen. A black scalloped border was placed across the top of the three sections without the upper letters to help the word You stand out better.

A black doodled border and charcoal shading were added to the elements but there was something missing. I left it for a while and came back with fresh eyes. What was missing was a few pops of white. I added those with...are you ready for this?...the white paper dots in the bottom of my three hole punch. Seriously! I shaded them with charcoal and outlined them with black pen to finish off the page.

And that's how I chose to showcase this gorgeous image by Courtney McAnsh from Part 2 of the Sweet Pea Stamps FB Progressive challenge. I'm excited to see how you use it. To see how others on the DT responded to this challenge, pop over to the Sweet Pea Stamps FB group. Be sure to visit Sweet Pea Stamps store to check out the other amazing digi and rubber stamps there. It's a wonderful place for inspiration.

Life is good; so is art.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Explore ~ Response to The East Wind Facebook Contest

Hi there.There is a brand new contest beginning today at The East Wind Facebook Community page. The theme this time is Make it Krafty so we want to see colouring on kraft paper using Unky's fabulous images..I love that effect of colouring on kraft. Normally I really enjoy the process, too, but I learned this time that not all kraft paper is created equal...lol. I have never had a problem before but this time the paper was more fibrous or fuzzy and didn't want to accept the pencil as easily as usual. Lesson learned: If it's nice to pet, I will regret :)

I decided to go all Steampunky and use Lucy Loo Magnified Star for my tag focal. I coloured her with Prismacolor pencils and a few Polychromos for face shading. I also used metallic gel pens for silver and gold accents. Her left eye has had a gem added to the center along with Glossy Accents for shine and dimension.I covered the right eye with a black and white puffy sticker toppped by a gem in the shape of a star and again topped it off with Glossy Accents. Lucy Loo was then fussy cut leaving a narrow Kraft border. She was backed with two die cut shapes, one in black and the other kraft cardstock. The kraft one was embossed with a TH folder and inked with Vintage Photo Distress ink. Once glued together, they were popped up on foam squares.

The background began as recycled packaging from a TH stencil. It was cut into a tag shape and pieces were torn from tool pages from an old Sears Roebuck calendar, inked with Vintage Photo, and adhered to the background. Gears were cut from a copper coloured metal sheet using the TH Gadget Gears die and added tothe background with Glossy Accents. Silver stars were punched from Ranger's Foil paper. A mix of thin metal gears were added over the holes in the die cut gears and in a cluster at the bottom. A few metal rings from the garage (no idea what they are) were also added to the mix.

The word Explore, written using chipboard letters, was glued to the bottom edge. A doodled border was added with black pen and the outside edge was inked with Vintage Photo and outlined with Black Big Brush pen. To frame the tag and add visual weight to the outside edges, black cardstock was cut as a mat and adhered to the back. It really needed this pop of black to provide the contrast and finish the piece. The ribbon for the topper has tiny silver "studs" to reference the industrial theme. The two lengths were attached with the Tiny Attacher stapler.

Thanks for joining Lucy Loo and me today. We love that you did that! To see what others on the DT created for this new contest, Make it Krafty, pop over to The East Wind Facebook page. We can't wait to see what you create colouring on kraft.

Life is good; so is art.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Quiet the Mind ~ new release day at The East Wind

Hi everyone. It's Friday and that means that there is another new release at The East Wind and I got to play along. The image is called Lucy Loo Lotus Leaf and I love her. She is peaceful and there are folds galore so she's fun to colour.

I coloured Lucy Loo with Prismacolor pencils using a few Polychromos to shade the skin. The shape for the image was created by tracing a template and then fussy cutting. Before matting it in black cardstock, the background was coloured with two shades of blue Pan Pastel to create a watery effect. Dew Drops were used to create water bubbles and catch the light.

The background started as a 6x8" rectangle of white mixed media paper. Delphinium Blue and Freaky Frankenlime Starburst sprays were spritzed through Colorbox's Rounded stencil to tie in with the water and bubbles themes on the image. Ranger Jet Black Archival ink was sponged through TCW's Layered Circles stencil to create a scattered and random pattern. Joggles Background Noise Circles stamp was inked with Jet Black Archival and stamped here and there for more texture and another touch of black.A border was doodled around the outside edges with the circles coloured in with white paint pen. Blue gelato was applied to the inside of that border and smudged with a finger.

The sentiment was created on the computer, printed on white cardstock, and then matted with black. The open loops of the letter e were coloured in with black pen to add another detail. The image and part of the sentiment were popped up on foam tape and applied to the background. The outside edge of the background was edged with black Big Brush pen, a few more dew drops were added to the stamped circles, and the entire piece was matted with black cardstock to frame it and tie the layers together.

Thanks so much for visiting today. Lucy Loo and I appreciate that. To see other projects created with today's new release, Lucy Loo Lotus Leaf, please visit The East Wind Facebook page where others on the DT will be displaying their fabulous makes. I just love how varied they are....tons of inspiration. We can't wait to see what you create!

Life is good; so is art.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Many Faces of Ed ~ An RSD Altered Board Book

Hi all. Rick St. Dennis' fabulous cat series which can be found in his Zibbet store is so funny and clever that I've been wanting to do an altered child's board book starring most if not all of them. I knew I would have fun with this mixed media project because the cats and the poor mice make me smile, grin, and laugh. I decided that the theme tying the book together would be Cat ~ Ed and all of his favourite activities. He is quite a guy. I prepped the 4.25 x 4.25 inch book by sanding it lightly and applying gesso to all of the pages to give it tooth and cover up the original colours and writing.

The first two page spread features Intoxi ~ Cat ~ Ed, aka Martini, with his cocktail glass and oh so dapper pajamas. I coloured Ed like a gray tabby using Prismacolor pencils, fussy cut him leaving a white border, and matted him with black cardstock.

The background began with blue and green Neocolor II watercolour crayons activated with water. Limelight and Beach Hut Fresco Finish paint was sponged over that to even it out and intensify the colours. Tiny circles and dots were stamped with Ranger Archival inks. Larger circles were created with gesso and bottle lids. Stencilling was done with embossing paste scraped through TCW's Mini Sketch Grid. The letters were black stickers. A little doodled border, blue gelato on the edges, and some washi tape completed the spread.

The second spread features Domesti ~ Cat ~ Ed, aka Mouse Cake. He was coloured like a marmalade cat using Prismacolor pencils and was matted the same as the previous image. He was adhered to a layered background of a corrugated tag, book text, music paper, and washi tape.

The background began with pink, orange, and yellow Neocolor II crayons scribbled onto the gessoed pages and activated with water. This was done a few times to achieve the look I wanted. Hero Arts Starburst stamp was applied with Magenta Hue Archival ink and a grid stamp with Pale Ochre Archival. Embossing paste was scraped through TCW's Tile texture stencil and black gesso lines were added with an old gift card. A border was added with thinned gesso and dots with Black Archival ink. Again, sticker letters were added to indicate which Ed we were seeing. To finish, orange gelato was applied to the edges and smudged with my finger.

The third spread features Compli ~ Cat ~ Ed, aka Clifford. This Ed was coloured like a calico or tri-coloured cat. He was fussy cut with a narrow white border, and again matted with black cardstock. he was backed with a black punched circle off set over a circle punched from mop-up paper.

The background had yellow and tan Neocolor II crayons scribbled in a random way over the gessoed background and then activated with water. Once again, Fresco Finish paint in Haystack and Pumpkin Soup were sponged over the top of the crayon and dried. Vintage Photo Distress ink was applied to the edges and also through TCW's Spinning Tops stencil. Layers of text paper, black cardstock with embossing paste stencilled on it, and a stamped piece of yellow designer paper topped with a die cut mixed media remnant were added to the left side of the spread. White gesso circles were added with bottle tops and more gesso was pounced through punchinella. The same stickers were added for lettering but this time the open letters were filled in with white paint pen. A zigzag doodled border, some grid stamping with Vintage Photo Distress ink, and brown gelato edging and I called it done.

Thanks for visiting today. Stay tuned for the next installation of The Many Faces of Ed next Tuesday when I return with three more of Rick's hilarious cats.

Life is good; so is art.

Monday, March 16, 2015

One Sweet Challenge - Mid month reminder post

Hi everyone. Have you entered the March challenge at One Sweet Challenge yet? The theme is Pastels with Lace, Ribbons, and Pearls. There is a new inspiration and reminder post on the challenge blog to help jump start your creativity. This particular theme causes me to think throughout because I don't use just pastel colours all that often. Could you smell the wood burning as I was thinking? LOL

I chose to play with this absolutely gorgeous Sweet Pea Stamps image by Meredith Dillman called Fanciful Notions. I absolutely love all of the sweet sewing details she has included like the scissor topped wings and the pin cushion hat. So charming! I coloured this with Prismacolor pencils, using a few Polychromos for shading the skin. The background of the oval behind her was coloured with gray Pan Pastel. Small half pearls were added to the scalloped edge and tiny ones to a few of the pin heads. the image was then fussy cut, matted with black cardstock, and trimmed again. It was then popped up on foam squares.

The background began as a piece of heavy weight designer paper which was pale green in colour and quite plain in design.I added stamping of a safety pin which has totally been covered but trust me, it's there and it's cute...lol. The TH Measured stencil was used with new Sprout Memento ink to add the tape measure detail in a few places. Pieces were ripped from a clothing pattern tissue and adhered to the background with gel medium. A doily and a half were also layered behind where the image would go. A zigzag stitching border was stamped with Bamboo Leaves Memento ink to provide a frame. Hey Pesto Fresco Finish paint was mixed with white embossing paste and scraped through TCW's Tiny Circles stencil to create more dimension and texture.

A length of lace topped with a row of pearls were adhered below the row of stencilling. Overlapping that is a mannequin cut with a TH die and popped up on foam tape. It was also edged with Vintage Photo Distress ink to age it and allow it to stand out against the background.The sweet image was layered over that and a resist chipboard heart coloured with Spun Sugar Distress ink was tucked between the image and the mannequin. A green ribbon was tied in a bow and adhered at the base of the mannequin. Two tiny white buttons with the shanks removed were adhered to the bottom left corner and three pearl headed corsage pins were poked into the foam tape behind the image to balance the top left corner and repeat the sewing theme.

One of the final touches was the sentiment which was printed on kraft paper, torn around, and inked with Vintage Photo to age it. White pencil was used for the stitching. The edges of the background were inked with Peeled Paint Distress ink and then the page was matted with black cardstock to frame it and provide contrast. I almost cannot create a project without black in there somewhere :) Besides, it ties in with the other bits of black scattered around the spread.

Thanks for visiting today. When you get a minute, check out the other fabulous projects created with Sweet Pea Stamps and posted on One Sweet Challenge's blog. We would love to have you join us for our Pastels with Lace, Ribbons, and Pearls theme this month.

Life is good; so is art.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Altered Playing Card Threesome

Hi there and Happy Friday 13th! I've been playing with some more altered playing cards which I first got hooked to when I took Mary Jane Chadbourne's The Spoken Soul class at Artful Gathering a few years ago. These are pure play for me...I think I could make them all day every day and not get tired of them. I won't go into much detail because you can read about my process here and here.

Those who know me also know that I have a very off the wall sense of humour and today's cards indulge that. I especially love pairing sweet images of children with zinger lines. The unexpected combination makes me laugh.

Anyway, I hope you get a little smile...or a great big guffaw out of these today. All images are from Mischief Circus artists, all cards from Bicycle (LOL), and the bits and scraps come from my attempt to clean up my desk after projects.

Thanks for joining us today. Have a good one!

Life is good; so is art.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

New Release at The East Wind today

Hi everyone. It's time for another Tuesday New Release at The East Wind and this time I got to play along. Yay! The image is called Twisted Venus Hairnest and she's a nature girl. I love the little eggs in her nest and the sweet birds flittering about. So cute!

I coloured Venus with my Prismacolor pencils using a few Polychromos to shade the skin. The image was cut into a circle shape using a die and then the sky was edged with Tumbled Glass and Broken China Distress inks.

The background began with a number 10 manila tag topped by black cardstock. White gesso was applied to opposite corners with a piece of Cut n Dry foam through TCW's Honeycomb stencil. The image was adhered overlapping the two areas of stencilling. Mixed media was spritzed with Delphinium Turquoise and Bells of Ireland Green Starburst sprays and allowed to dry. Leafy stems were then cut from the spritzed paper using a Memory Box die.

To complete the tag, a quote by Emerson was computer generated and printed on white cardstock. It was torn around and inked with Tumbled Glass Distress ink. Tiny white flowers and butterflies were added around the stems to add contrast and extend the nature theme. The finishing touch was to add two colours of blue ribbon tied with a little twine.

Thanks for joining Twisted Venus and me today. To see how some of the other DT members played with this fun image, pop over to The East Wind Facebook group. We would love to see what you create either with Venus or any other of Unky's characters at The East Wind.

Life is good; so is art.

Monday, March 09, 2015

Rick St. Dennis Euro Girls Artist Trading Block

Hi all. A few weeks ago I posted  my bees and flowers artist trading block which you can see here if you missed it. I had such a blast with it that I decided to create another one using some of Rick St. Dennis' Euro Girls. There is something sweet and innocent about them within their quirkiness that appeals to me. The ATB, which I purchased pre-cut from Joggles, measures 3.25 on all sides and although I did the background on all six sides, I couldn't bear to have an image face-down so I didn't add one to the bottom.

I coloured each of the five Euro Girl Images with my Prismacolor pencils using Polychromos to shade the skin. The images I used are: Euro Girl LinDa, Euro Girl Pauline, Euro girl Springi, Euro Girl Rosa, and Euro Girl Easter Edna. While colouring, I kept the palette the same, trying to incorporate most colours on each image for continuity. I fussy cut each one leaving a narrow white border, matted each on black cardstock, and trimmed them out again. I like how this double matting gives them contrast with the background and allows them to take center stage.

The background was created by spritzing the flat block pieces with Yellow Rose of Texas, freaky Franklin Lime, and Bells of Ireland Green Starburst sprays. I didn't tip them to make the colours run because I wanted the yellow to stay true in some places and with yellow and green side by side on the colour wheel, I knew they would blend easily and make one colour quickly if I wasn't careful. I actually heat dried them and re-spritzed with the yellow to strengthen it. I did pick up some of the green over-spray to make stronger spots here and there.

White embossing paste was scraped through a Memory Box Rings and Puddles stencil with a palette knife, varying the design on each side. I love how it picks up a little of the background colour in places.  A bubble stamp was inked with Mowed Lawn Distress ink and rolled onto the background randomly. The same ink was used to deepen the outside edges of each cube face. Bits of drywall mesh were added to each side once the box was assembled and I knew approximately where each image would be placed.

Now you know it wouldn't be my piece if there weren't touches of black accenting the design. I began with stars punched from black cardstock. next I added bits of black and white harlequin washi tape to each side and then finally added larger black half pearls. I also added tiny black half pearls to the pull toy duck's eye and Pauline's dress. White half pearls were added to the buttons on Rosa's blouse. White paint pen dots were added to the stars. Initially I edged the sides of each face with a green Big Brush pen, thinking that I always use black and I might change it up. I assembled the block and finished it but something was definitely missing. I left it over night and in the morning went back and added the black Big Brush pen to each edge over the green. Much happier :) To me, it needed that frame to look finished.It was worth a try though...lol.

Thanks for joining the Euro Girls and I today. We appreciate your fine company. Hopefully, we have made you smile and sparked an idea or two.

Life is good; so is art.

Monday, March 02, 2015

Just Fly ~ One Sweet Challenge March theme response

Hi there! Since it's a new month, we also have a new theme at One Sweet Challenge. This month the theme is Pastel Colours with Ribbons, Pearls, and Lace. Now the last three didn't cause me any grief but the pastel colours really kept me on my toes throughout this mixed media spread. I do not do pastel colours often...even when I start out that way. Usually some wild and crazy colours and lots of black find their way into my art. I even wrote a little reminder sign that I kept on my desk so I wouldn't forget and pop in some jewel tones...lol.

I chose to play with a Sweet Pea Stamps image by Helena Reis called Cherry Blossom Dreams. I love her whimsical images and the sweetness of her faces. I coloured this little fairy with Prismacolor pencils, adding a few Polychromos to shade the skin. I fussy cut her leaving a narrow white border, and then matted her in brown...not black as usual. She is so gentle and dreamy looking...love her. Foam squares were applied to the back of the image to add dimension once she was adhered to the background.

The background was a piece of designer paper cut to 6 x 8 inches. Stencilling was applied to it with Beach Hut and Mermaid Fresco Finish paints through Colorbox's Swirl Dot and TCW's Mini Harlequin Circles stencils. Some text was stamped on with Cornflower Blue Archival and some bubbles with Vintage Photo Distress ink.

Torn pieces of yellow designer paper were dry embossed and added to the background overlapping old book paper. White crocheted lace was layered over two of those pieces and white half pearls were added to the center medallions. Three lengths of pale yellow dotty ribbon were cut and added to the top right corner. Three large half pearls accented the tops of these. Another length was folded onto itself and a thin strip of cardstock to create the detail where the branch begins and overlap the end of that part of the image so it doesn't float.

A final piece of the same ribbon was folded into a loop and added as a tab on the sentiment element. This was edged in Vintage Photo once it was die cut, and then matted with brown. Faux stitching was added to give it more visual weight. To balance out the upper left corner, a photo corner was punched from left-over sprayed paper and adhered in from the edge. The finishing touches were the doodling and outlining, the pearls in her beautiful flowing hair, and a brown mat to frame the piece and provide contrast with the pastels as well as tying in the colour of the branch.

Thank you for joining Cherry Blossom and me today. To see the other fabulous projects by the rest of our talented DT, please visit One Sweet Challenge. We would love to have you join us this month for our Pastels plus Ribbon, Lace & Pearls challenge. Be sure to stop by Sweet Pea Stamps, as well, to see more of these gorgeous images by Helena Reis and all of the other talented artists featured there.

Life is good; so is art.