October 30, 2014

Treats


The image I used for this tag shows a little girl dressed up in costume and I'm pretty sure it wasn't for Halloween but instead, illustrates the Victorian obsession with fairies.

The following explanation came from a book review on Amazon:

Clap if you believe in fairies! The Victorians did, writes Carole Silver in Strange and Secret Peoples: Fairies and Victorian Consciousness, but she's not exactly talking about Tinkerbell here. Silver prefers the more gruesome and treacherous species of fay: changelings and vampires, brownies and goblins. The Victorians took these creatures very seriously, indeed, and according to Silver, this belief tapped into some of their society's most fundamental anxieties. Fear of physical deformity, of women's sexual power, of racial or class difference: these were the true bogeymen that haunted the Victorian imagination, and they responded with a flood of art, literature, and theater that portrayed these imaginary creatures with equal measures of fascination and horror.

Now days, Halloween has become an extremely popular holiday and rivals Christmas or Easter with its enthusiastic decoration and celebration. Is it because we suffer from similar anxieties?

About my tag: A cutting from Tim's Wallflower paper stash was used for the background. I love the lithographic quality of this paper and brought out some of the details with Gelly Roll pens.

I further embellished with Stickles which I store upside down to keep the thick solution close to the tip and always ready for use.

A light touch with colored pencils helped to tint the little fairy's dress and provide a shadow for her to stand on.

I'm linking this post to the Monday blog challenge at Simon Says Stamp where this week's theme is treats. Happy Halloween, everyone--I hope it's full of sweets!

October 25, 2014

Splatters for Andrea


A recent post by Andrea Ockey Parr has inspired the creation of this tag made by stomping various Distress Ink stains on a piece of glossy paper. I used a black Gelly Roll pen to outline some of the splatters, turning them into shapes resembling flowers and added an image of my great Aunt Ada, some stamped dragonflies and a bit of washi tape to complete it.

I am always inspired by Andrea's creations--her work is full of whimsy and color and she often uses mediums in an unconventional way.

She never fails to make me smile and she leaves the BEST blog comments.

Thank you, Andrea!

October 17, 2014

O Karma, Darma

Click to enlarge
O Karma, Darma, pudding and pie,
gimme a break before I die:
grant me wisdom, will and wit,
purity, probity, pluck and grit.

Trustworthy, loyal, helpful, kind,
gimme great abs and
a steel-trap mind, and forgive,
Ye Gods, some humble advice--
these little blessings would suffice
to beget an earthly paradise:

make the bad people good--
and the good people nice;
and before our world goes over the brink,
teach the believers how to think. 

This poem, by Philip Appleman, is what I inscribed on my journal page (in case you can't read my handwriting).


I started the background by using a variety of paint colors with a stencil by Simon Says Stamp called Gingham/Pure Sunshine. I added the bird cage, tree, bird and people then started filling-in blank areas with a variety of stencils and stamps.

I often use poetry as inspiration for a journal page. Sometimes I start with the poem and sometimes (as in this case) the poem comes at the end.

As I printed the lines on the page, I was thinking about how our schools no longer believe it necessary to teach penmanship and wondered when poetry will meet the same fate.

I'm linking to this week's challenge at SSS where the theme is "the letter O" which is the first word of this poem (from New and Selected Poems, 1956-1996, University of Arkansas Press).

October 15, 2014

White Orchids


daguerreotype was my inspiration for this tag which combines an image transfer and stamping over some Tim Holtz tissue paper and glazing with acrylic paints.

A fair amount of masking was required to accomplish this task and I painted behind the transfer to prevent the background from showing through the photo.

I also filled in the orchid stamp (Stampendous) with paint and couldn't have done it without my favorite paint brush, a number 0 sable. It was a pricey investment but this brush is several years old and has lasted much longer than any other tiny paint brush I have ever owned.

I'm linking to the Monday blog challenge at Simon Says Stamp where this week's theme is the letter "O" and I just have to say--the alphabet challenges are my favorite!

October 08, 2014

Nevermore...


Here's my contribution for the link-up to Tim's October tag. I used the standard techniques: stamping, masking, embossing and inking, and Tim's Lost and Found stamp set, which is kind of "edgy" and suitable for this occasion. The raven is one of my own, hand-carved stamps.

The frame was made with texture paste and a homemade stencil but an error in stamp alignment forced me to do a cut and paste instead of applying the texture directly on the tag. Oh well!

However, I did make a useful discovery that I'd like to share.

I rubbed a dryer sheet over the paper prior to embossing (it's supposed to keep the powder from sticking where it shouldn't).

I ripped a corner off the sheet and discovered that the loose fibers make a rather authentic looking cobweb.

Nothing beats a typewriter for creating text, so I rolled the tag into the platen and was sure I felt Mr. Poe looking over my shoulder as I typed the word nevermore...

October 06, 2014

Cowboy and Indian


If you were born before 1970, you may recognize that the image used in this journal page is the Indian-head test pattern which was shown on black and white TVs right before a broadcasting station signed off for the night.

If you've followed my blog for awhile, you may also recognize the little cowboy as an image used in a previous blog post.

In terms of technique, this two page journal spread was an exercise in trying out three new stencils and a new stamp that I purchased from SSS after winning the $50 prize drawing a few weeks back.

The first stencil used is by Prima called Pavers which I moved around the page to create a color wheel pattern then knocked-back a bit with off-white paint.

I applied a gel medium image transfer of the Indian-head test pattern next.

I followed with a stencil by My Favorite Things called Grid to add a black pattern to the corners and page borders. I added text with a stencil by Crafter's Workshop called Art Is to cover large parts of the page using mostly white and some black paint.

I was skeptical about how well the text stencil would work but I'm quite impressed and very happy with the results. This was a good investment and it is sure to get lots of use.

Click to enlarge
I added tiny text from a stamp by Kaiser called Dictionary Meanings to create a border around the test pattern using black archival ink.

I used distress ink here and there to help unify the composition.

I created a background for the little cowboy with white paint before pasting him to the page and added a hand-written sentiment and a tiny pink heart.

I'm linking to this week's Monday blog challenge at SSS where the theme is "Falling in love with..." (my new stencils and stamp). And what better time to extend a great big thank you to SSS for the generosity of their $50 prize and to each and every design team member for all their hard work.