Saturday, April 30, 2011

Camera Playing

 I am in love with my new camera.  I had been shooting with a Canon Rebel and the pictures just weren't turning out right no matter what I did or what I tried.  Two weeks ago I finally ordered a Nikon D3100 with the intention of "just trying it and sending it back"...that ain't gonna happen.  This baby is mine and I'm keeping it.  No present for my birthday, anniversary, Christmas...for the rest of my life?  In order to justify keeping it I told myself I need to figure out how to shoot totally manual and lots of subjects.  So today I tried things that were in bloom in our yard...yum!

Gorgeous deep purple Azalea in the backyard.

I'm not sure what this pretty little white "weed" is that comes up in spring in you know what it is?  Please let me know if you do...yummy isn't it?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Yummy Cool Colors

Sometimes you just need to play don't you?  This page started with a smear of green paints with a credit card...then I smeared emerald green paint through punchinella to create the large dots.  The next day I really needed a play release so I glued down lots of foreign text pages that had been colored with acrylic paints.  I also stamped some commercial stamps and my own swirl stamp in black StazOn ink.  I still think it needs a bit more, but I'm loving the playing.  I doubt this page will have writing on it...too much going on without the writing.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Every Inchie Monday - Joy

The theme this week at Every Inchie Monday was joy.  A bit tricky...I always associate the word joy with Christmas, but it's April...a Christmas inchie would definitely not be appropriate for April.  So I thought of something that brings me joy and one thing is definitely music.  I love listening to music whether it's at work, in the car, while cooking dinner or working in my art journals. So I went with a music theme...

This inchie was created with vintage music paper splattered with lime green and turquoise ink (reinkers with water added).  Two strips of painted vintage text were added to the right and the "joy" is written with black puffy paint.  The fuzzy black edge was created with black acrylic paint applied with a cosmetic sponge.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Quote: Domino with another bout of stasis

I've been a little absent from my blog lately because we've been dealing with another bout of stasis with Domino.  It's a pretty common ailment with rabbits where their digestive systems shuts down, but it can cause death in 24 hours.  We had to administer drugs, food and water by force for days to get him through this but luckily he started eating and thus taking his drugs voluntarily after 3 days.  I kept thinking of this quote every day and knew I had to letter it.  He really scared the sh*t out of us this time.  Usually he snaps out of it pretty quick, but not this time.  Allen and I can handle this and we always seem to nurse him back to health but it's so hard...and this time it seemed particularly tricky.  And you feel so terrible bun-handling him too.

I did this quote with Micron pens and colored it with watercolor.  Domino and the border were masked with masking fluid to create the white.  He's such a bright white, shining star in our lives.  We just love this little guy but I really, really, really hope this is the last time he'll get sick.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Leave a note for your sweetie

Allen is on a pool league on Thursday nights and comes home pretty late...way later than when I go to bed so I like to leave him a little note sometimes.  I have to admit that I run out of ideas though what to write or what the little note should look like.  This week I realized I had a ton of shipping tags and wouldn't it be fun to leave him a really big message made out of these tags.  Sometimes it's amazing how "free" I get when I make things for Allen...these tags took less than a half an hour...he must be a bit of a muse in my brain somehow. :)

These manila tags were painted with inexpensive watercolors, detailed with Micron and Pitt pens and I added an extra bit of color with Prismacolor colored pencils.  My favorite detail is the black lines made with StazOn ink on a piece of corrugated cardboard from a disposable drink cozy.

Should you leave a little note for your sweetie, roommate or best friend this week?  I promise they'll love it!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Every Inchie Monday - Friendship

When I thought of the theme of friendship this week on Every Inchie Monday Allen was the first one that sprang to mind.  He's my best friend in every way imaginable.  A girl couldn't ask for a better that guy!

I was picked at random as the featured inchie this fun!

This inchie was made with Micron pens and colored with Koi Watercolors.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Card: Happy 80th Birthday Dad!

My father-in-law turned 80 this week so of course I had to make him a card.  The background is music paper with black glitter.  The green is a vintage Italian page and the foreground is a mix of two colors of watercolor.  Happy Birthday Dad!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Every Inchie Monday - Peace

This week the theme at Every Inchie Monday was peace...I was sort of stumped.  What to do?  I could have grabbed one of our little peace charms at work, but I'm not a "peace sign" kind of person.  Instead I tried to think of colors that would mean "peace" to me.

After I made the one, I realized a few inchies were what I needed for a recent art journal page that was a bit boring.  My inchie was the same color family as the borders so I made 4 more and added them to my art journal layout.  I think it looks a lot better with the little detailed inchies floating around the edges.  This page is now all ready for my babblings when I'm ready to add them.

The background of my inchies is bubble wrap watercolor with blue strips of foreign language text pages.  I put dark blue pigment ink on the edges and embossed with clear embossing powder.  The inchies are then wrapped with emerald green embroidery floss.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

5 Minute Flowers

Martha Lever had two tutorials up on YouTube called 5 Minute Watercolor Flowers which I stumbled upon the other day.  Regrettably I'm not sure what happened to the videos (they're now gone)...and regrettably I just watched (quickly) the first video, but I'm absolutely addicted to doing these little watercolor flower paintings with my big girl watercolors (Windsor & Newton Cotman watercolors).  I've learned to mix purple from alizarin crimson and ultramarine...yay!  I'm using these little paintings as bookmarks...can you tell I love purple flowers?

Spring is in the air!  Allen and I planted two Columbine plants today in our new sunny bed.  Our whole yard is shade except for this new bed where we took out the wood pile last year. 

These little watercolors were done on scraps of Fabriano Artistico 90 pound hot press paper with Cotman watercolors and doodled with Micron pens.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Postcards to the Children of Japan

I stumbled upon Quinn McDonald’s blog the other day and she's collecting postcards to send to the children of Sakura Japan.  "What a wonderful idea!" I thought immediately.  Why not send some color and a bit of cheer if I could?...I'll make tons!

When I actually sat down to make them though, I was stumped and overwhelmed.  What to say?  What do you say to children in the midst of such a nightmare?  On top of it, I was limited by materials...they needed to be something that I could mail without a mail machine ripping them apart (didn't do collage and I love collage...cut out tons of butterfly's initially) and what if they got wet in the rain (no watercolors).  And yet I wanted them fun and full of color.  Finally I just said to myself to "just make them!!!" and I did.  I hope to make more, but for now, I've got these two that are going out in the mail tomorrow.  I ended up using Prismacolor markers, reinkers and gel markers.

Thank you Quinn for taking on this project!  I truly hope you bring a little bit of color and cheer to the children of Sakura Japan.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Handwriting ATC Swap

One of my ATC swap groups is doing a handwriting swap.  How could I not join in the fun?!  I checked with the swap coordinator to make sure lettering was okay...not just my everyday handwriting and she said of I went to work.  I couldn't find quotes that I liked that were small enough to fit on the cards so I just made up some little inspirational thoughts.

I made these 2.5x3.5" cards by painting wet-on-wet watercolor as a background.  The writing was done with Micron pens.  They looked a bit boring still so I splashed on Pearl Ex powders mixed with glaze and water on top.  Out in the mail they go today...can't wait to see what I get back!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Every Inchie Monday - Sing

In a previous post I had mentioned I had too many tiny scraps floating around my desk, what better way then to make use of them than to create an inchie!  I found this fun blog:  Every Inchie Monday where they have a theme for you to follow each week for your inchie creation.  I am an inchie junkie and haven't made any in a while so I thought it was time.

I put this little 1" square inchie on a journal page and then worked around it.  I think the page ended up looking like a mess, but I like the colors I used.  As long as I'm having fun, what does it matter!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Bunny Power - Domino Style

When I saw Carla Sonheim's post this morning about drawing a fun little bunny picture, how could I not draw Domino in this style?  The only problem...with the 5,000 pens (give or take) I own, they're all waterproof!  I really couldn't believe it, not a single one of the markers or pens I own is water based.  No worries, walnut ink bleeds beautifully.  The only trouble I had was my nibs didn't put a lot of ink down so I had to double some of the lines to get good color in the drawing.

I worked again from my favorite photograph of Domino that you might remember from this post.  I love this picture because this is how he is always looking at us.  His left eye is paralyzed (and thus, probably blind) and he has a head tilt so he's always looking at us with his "good" right side.  Gotta love his little unicorn look too with one ear up and one ear down.  I absolutely love Carla's way of simplifying the details and getting to the essence of my little bun.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Striped Background Toned Down

The other day I was thinking that my backgrounds in my art journal were all starting to look the same...maybe vertical stripes would be fun and a bit different.  I picked a few bright colors and painted away.  When they dried they looked entirely too bright...what to do?

A wash of watered down ink was just what I needed to tone down these bright, garish stripes.  I used a really watered down wash of purple ink and now the colors are still bright, but not obnoxious.  Not sure what I'm going to do next, maybe just writing along the stripes...who knows?
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