Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Saturday Class!

Hey, I'm teaching a class! It's my last class at My Daughter's Wish before it closes, and I have lots of little goodies planned! Call the store at 925-952-4437 if you'd like to sign up! Here's the description:
Mini Painted Masterpieces
It's time to pull out those paints again, play, and even get ready for the holidays at the same time! Casey will show you 9 great paint and mixed media techniques (including one that she used on her piece in the December/January issue of The Stamper's Sampler) on 9 miniature canvases. The canvases can easily be finished with drawings, collage or embellishments for thoughtful holiday gifts or ornaments. All class participants can stay for the Saturday night crop for FREE, and Casey will be there with her little bag of goodies to help you complete your masterpieces.
Saturday, Dec. 13 at 3:00, $32

Friday, December 5, 2008

Day 3 and 4

The challenge of using a pre-made scrapbook is making your picture and page work together. For Day 3 I had this great Daisy D vintage Santa paper, but pictures from my walk by the creek. To tone down the print, I used parchment paint over some of it, then glued down a couple of layers of tissue paper. My paper buckled a little, but overall I liked the effect.

Day 4 - a simple sketch. We are a bit advent crazy this year, and it spread to the Christmas books. They are numbered one through 24, and the kids look forward each night to seeing what the book will be. Pussy Cat's Christmas is not in the box, because that gets read every night, just like last year.

Journal Your Christmas Day 3 - Cards. This was last year's card, but I'm putting out the disclaimer right now - it may not happen this year. The calendar is pretty full, and I just don't know if I'll get to cards. Not that I'm not thinking about you all, but I may not show it through the postal service.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

December Daily - Day One

So, crazy woman that I am, I decided to add TWO dailies to my holiday experience this year. I have season two of the December Daily album (about twice the size of last year's) and also the Journal Your Christmas art journal. Day One of the art journal was your personal manifesto for keeping the book, and day two was simply the weather. I'm still lovin' the masks and stencils right now, so the background for Day One was gesso through sequin waste (and I used my finger to paint it! As my student's know, I like the fast and lazy way of getting things done!) and for Day Two, I used a hand cut paper snowflake as a mask. The Weathered Wood Distress Ink was the same color as the sky today.

Even though the December Daily album is much bigger this year, I have vowed to keep the pages simple. I want to focus on the story, and not take too much time away from the holiday to-do list to complete it. The Day One page is a total scraplift from Ali. I plan on using lots of page maps and scraplifts to get this one done this year.  Day Two has been a day - lots of not so great stuff going on today, and my little camera finally gave out, so it's all journaling. Not much to look at (so I didn't post it). At least it's Day Two and I'm still caught up!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Journal Your Christmas

Journal your Christmas
Okay, I need another project like I need a hole in my head, but here it is. Yes, another online class (you can read about it and sign up here), but I was seduced. I had first heard about the class on a SIS post, then on some of my Yahoo groups, and then again on Ali's blog, and EVERYONE loved it. Seriously, I have heard nothing but praise from past participants. I do have that unfinished Christmas journal from Rhi's class, so I suppose I have a head start. And I love Christmas. I really, really love Christmas, even more now that I have kids. The best thing about this class - once you take it, you can participate every year for FREE. That's right, pay once, (only $30!) play every year. A journal prompt gets emailed daily, so you have plenty of inspiration. Hopefully by putting it up here, it will put a little pressure on me to keep up with the daily prompts and post some of them on the blog. I like working under deadlines. So, anyone want to join me?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Christmas Journal

I took a great little on-line art journal class last week by Rhian.  There were two options - regular prompts and Christmas themed. It had never occurred to me to create a Christmas art journal! Here are the second and third groups of pages (the first page is in the previous post). It is an altered book, and instead of gluing the pages together, she had us sew them. Love it! So fast and easy, and you can leave openings on the side or top to make a pocket.  Yes, Santa looks a little cross eyed (and my husband believes it looks like him!), but it is an art journal, not a finished piece. To my art journal students, I do practice what I preach. It doesn't need to be polished or perfect, it is a place to explore, and even mess up! 

I'm taking another on-line class with Claudine Helmuth this week. I think I'm getting a little addicted to these virtual classrooms. So convenient, so inspiring, and they keep me working at a productive speed. Maybe I'll do one someday. I love the thought of being able to teach in my jammies! 

Last but not least, I have a new project post on the MDW blog. This week's project is a little mini-album about family. Quick to put together, and the focus is on journaling. Click here to check it out!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A couple of small things

I've been knee deep in projects this week - a Thanksgiving book (you can see the pictures and tutorial on the MDW blog, here), a new art journal for an online class, some fiber bookmarks for a trade, an altered jumper, another altered book, and since the sewing machine is out, I finally stitched a little skirt from a vintage tablecloth to protect my beautiful desk chair. (breathing now...)

Since the theme this week for Mixed Media Monday is body parts, I thought I'd share my new journal page from the Christmas journal class:
and a sketch I did for my Alice In Wonderland paper dolls (I sent those in for publication, so no pics of those yet). I didn't end up going with this Alice face, but I still like the sketch:

I suppose that will have to be all for now - the kids have little gift certificates from Build A Bear for their stuffed animal's birthdays (yes, their STUFFED animal's birthday - great marketing!), and the day off from school, so a trip to Build A Bear is in order. I hope my pocketbook survives the trip!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

December Daily - the beginning

Last year I followed along with Ali's blog and made a daily album for December. It was only 6x6, in my favorite Cosmo Be Good papers, and it was so easy to maintain each day. The whole family loved it. This year, Ali is starting another round. I took her advice, and gathered up all of my holiday papers and embellishments. I found some Christmas papers stashed in my patterned paper file, and pulled a bunch of light green stripes and polka dots that someone gave me YEARS ago. It was a large pile. Enough for the whole month. So I decided to make this a "green" album and use only the supplies I had on hand, or ones I could make. I had two book boards  from an old portfolio, so those became the cover. Many of the papers I had were very light, and few were two sided. Crazy as it sounds, I decided to glue them together with a cardstock core (the album will be held together with loose binder rings, so I won't be using page protectors.) It actually went faster then I thought. I simply used a glue stick, some old icky pastel cardstock, and a brayer to make sure the pages were on snug. It is a hodgepodge of designs, so for the numbers, I used various pieces of chipboard and grungeboard for the frames, and painted them all the same red.

The cover is made from layers of white tissue applied with gesso. Before adding the fourth layer, I sprinkled green glitter on the third layer and used matte medium instead of gesso. The background squares are Grungeboard covered in crushed velvet flock from Doodlebug (very cool stuff), and the numbers are also Grungeboard. I inked the 2 and 8, and applied the green glitter to the zeros to make the ornaments. The tops are pieces of Grungeboard cut from the background sheet and inked. 

I liked the idea of binder rings, so I could have a fat album and add pages or memorabilia during the month. I don't have many holiday elements left from last year, so we'll see how this album evolves, and if I can stick to no new purchases! I'll be posting completed pages during the month of December.

So, are you with me? Check out Ali's book (beautiful, of course!) and some of the pictures on the Flicker group. I was never satisfied with my Christmas layouts until I tried this mini-album concept. It is definitely the best way to record the season! If you have started one yourself, share a link so we can see! If you'd like more ideas for Grungeboard, check out my tips on the blog for My Daughter's Wish!

Monday, November 3, 2008

journal pages

I've kept a journal, on and off, since I was a girl. It was just the written word; sketches remained in sketchbooks. In college, I started writing in my sketchbooks, and visa versa. Now I find that the words are secondary to the images. The words let me run off at the mouth, but the images have more meaning, more impact now. Images speak to the subconscious in a way that words never will. It's an evolution. 

The theme for Mixed Media Monday is fall colors. Check out Debbie's beautiful sample.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Sick, with benefits

Both of the kids are sick. At times, it's been crazy, but on the other hand, I've bee able to carve out a few more hours to work. I followed Ali's A Week in the Life album project, and was finally able to finish the album. I had some very old chipboard dividers that were perfect for the album. I kept it SIMPLE - I do have a tendency to make things much more complicated and time consuming then they need to be.

I got a few journal pages done as well. I used two of the prompts from Creative Therapy, What book influenced you and if you could buy something for someone else, what would it be? For the latter, I had a background already done that worked perfectly; it was made from the stubs from bills! For the Wrinkle In Time page, I used a crumpled map, inked it, and then applied one of Tim Holtz's new masks. Speaking of masks, I have a Halloween tutorial using alcohol inks and masks on the MDW blog. There are four different projects up, so take a peek! (Here's one for you!)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I have work to do

I had work to do today, samples for the Designer Extra post on My Daughter's Wish blog. So, I took Madeline to school, and played with Max. We went grocery shopping, put away the groceries, then picked up Madeline. I cleaned the house and took the kids to gymnastics. I sat through a tortured four pages of homework with Madeline. I cooked  dinner, from scratch. I did the dishes, got the kids into showers, and made lunches. I took care of  toothbrushing, flossing and rinsing. I read books, then did laundry. I sat with the kids for awhile, and then, finally, when all was quiet, I got to work. My husband had homework for the classes he's taking, so he came home, ate the dinner I fixed, and did his homework. Why is it that everyone else can do their work when they need to, but a mother has to do everyone else's work first?

If you'd like to see the fruits of my labor, I have a tutorial for alcohol inks and masks here.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Back to reality

Yes, the trip was fabulous! I think we hit a record with four character meals (I didn't know that dinner at Goofy's kitchen was a character event, too!), so the kids were in heaven. Some of Madeline's dreams came true when Minnie Mouse took her hand and walked them to our table. I'll recount more Disney stories later, but I just wanted to make a quick post on two My Daughter's Wish events:

I have a card tutorial on the MDW blog. Check it out here.

Saturday, October 18, from 11:00 - 1:00 is a Halloween Spooktacular at MDW. There may be a few spots left, but you can participate in the Make-n-Takes for a nominal fee, even if you just walk in! I'll be creating this Halloween ATC: 

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Disney on the brain

First off, I'd like to give a big shout out to the fabulous ladies who came to my art journal class on Saturday. I sure had a great time, and I hope you did, too. I'd love to make this into an on-going class, with a focus next time on quick ink backgrounds and composing pages. Tell me what you think. Also, if any questions have come up as you have been working on your pages (please tell me you are working on pages!), feel free to leave a comment or email me from my web page link on the right. This is an on-going process, and we are all in it together! I have been working on four pages, although only one is complete. Those who were in the class may recognize the background; it was one of the unfinished ones in the journal I brought. After a series of layers of ink, gesso and old rub-ons, I found a small photo left over from a previous art project, and taped that on. I wasn't quite sure where to go from there, when I noticed the shadow of my hand on the paper. I grabbed a pencil and voila, done!

But what really has me occupied this week is thoughts of Disneyland. I can't wait. I decided this year to try an 8x8 three ring album. It was a present from Matt several Christmases ago, and it came with black pages. I added patterned paper dividers and some watercolor pages for sketching. I figured I'd take a hole punch with me and just stick ephemera in as we go. I also finished a page about a little incident during our first Disney trip. The plastic bucket did not make for great photography, so I decided to sketch it, instead. I liked it so much, I think I'll do more scrapbook pages with sketches (and look, it's in ink!)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Take a box, a few paper bags and two creative kids, and you have a trip into space. It reminds me of the simple, charming book, Not A Box. Some much imagination. Why do so many adults spend a lifetime trying to get it back?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Art Journal Pages

A few recent journal pages - the first three highlight some of the painting techniques I'll be teaching in my art journal class on the 27th (see info to the right). I'm super excited about this one, because I really love technique classes and I'm hoping to introduce many to the joys of art journaling. I love it so much, I decided to make it my GATE art class this year at school (but all of the kids know I let anyone come. Art should not be the exclusive property of gifted and talented students).

The last two pages are from our trip this weekend to the de Young museum in San Francisco to see the Chihuly glass exhibit. It was good fodder for this week's Mixed Media Monday topic, famous people. I must first give props to the de Young for their teacher membership discount. For just $55 I was able to get a membership for two adults to both the de Young and Legion of Honor. I had one BC (before children) and it's good to have one again. We went without the kids this time (Max and glass are NOT a good combination), but I'm looking forward to going back with them for an art scavenger hunt. My parents always took us to museums and galleries when we were growing up, and it made a lasting impression.

But the show -OH! I have been a big fan for many years, and seeing the works in person was absolutely amazing. He is brilliant, absolute genius! The color, he scale, the organic shapes, the staging... I could go on and on. I think the color may have been one of the most inspiring aspects of the show; that, and the pure imagination. If you are in the bay area, you'd better catch it fast - it leaves on the 28th. The downside - the masses of people. You have to get a timed ticket (much easier if you are a member!), then wait in line at your time to get in, and then contend with all of the crowds once you are inside. The smell of that many people is not my ideal way of viewing art, and I wouldn't do it for most artists. But for Chihuly, it's worth it!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Monday Night Football

I was so excited for the start of football season. Matt's at the Raider game with John, and for once I think I'm glad it's not me. Boy, it looks like another loooooong season. Ugh! So I found this very old drawing (1992!) in a sketchbook and felt it was quite appropriate. Let's hope it gets better as the season goes on...

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

A Nice Surprise

I found this in my mailbox this afternoon:
Now, I don't subscribe to Take Ten, so I knew I must have gotten a card published. But I couldn't recall sending one in, and we were late for gymnastics, so I couldn't take a peek. Finally, at the gym, I was able to find this:

This was one of the first cards I sent in for publication - at least two years ago! What a nice surprise! I looked through the issue and as I closed it, I found this one the back:

There, the ad for the current stamping magazines. And I have cards in both, including the cover. It feels good. Yah, I'm tooting my own horn. But it's my blog. Toot, toot!

(why is the text underlined? dunno. not for the emphasis, really! Blogger is acting up again)

Monday, September 1, 2008

Finally finished!

Whew! (that starts with a "w", right?) I have finally finished my 20 ATCs for this month's exchange. The theme, as I mentioned previously, is "w", which has now morphed from "whatever" to "whatever the hell I want." (You'd feel the same way, too after making 20 different ATCs.)  I can say that I'm very proud of the lot. Mixed Media Monday's theme this week is nature, and I'm sneaking it in here with the sunrise and tiger because I do want to mention again the rusty paper technique I learned on their forum. I really loved illustrating over it - it has such a unique, beautiful tonal range. Thanks, Diane!

Creative Therapy's catalyst this week is fear, and as I've stated before, drawing in ink was a huge fear of mine. HUGE. That may sound silly, but I've spent the years working in looser mediums - pencil, paint, pastels, and the thought of that ink line just scared the shit out of me. Pardon the language, but it's true. So I've been filling my ink journal, drawing ATCs, sketching in pen right in my copy of The Creative License, by Danny Gregory (LOVE it!) and I can now say, I am no longer afraid of ink. In fact, I find I am reaching for a pen more often then a pencil when I sketch. I'm even liking some of the people I've drawn. In ink. No pencil. It still kinda amazes me. I have a long way to go, but lesson learned. Just do it. and do it. and do it...

p.s. - You still have time to post for the Ugly Paper challenge on the MDW blog! I'll be giving away the RAK on Sept. 7. Check it out here!