Saturday, September 23, 2017

Faithful Paper Crafting: Notecards, Gift Tags, Scrapbook Paper & More to Share the Blesing

This is really a paper crafting kit in a book.  I received a review copy from Fox Chapel Publishing yesterday and I'm already starting to tear into it.  It contains:
  • 16 sheets of double-sided scrapbook paper,
  • 21 pages of art cards and greeting cards,
  • 16 gift tags,
  • 18 double-sided "mini cards",
  • 16 double-sided gift tags,
  • Envelope templates - both large and small
  • 2 full-page art prints, and
  • 15 pages of project ideas.
The scrapbook paper is medium weight and one side is patterned; the other side reminds me of watercolor washes of colors adjacent to each other on the color wheel.  The envelope templates could be used with these or with papers from your own stash to create lovely envelopes to mail or deliver your cards in.

All of the paper and cards are perforated for easy removal from the book.  With a quick visit to the paper trimmer you can remove the perforated edge before folding or mounting.

The art cards and greeting cards are printed with some lines or frames for writing on the reverse side.  Some are perforated, some are designed to be folded, and they include 12 black and white cards for you to color yourself.  There are a great variety of designs and greetings, a few Bible verses, but mostly more general inspirational messages.

One of my favorite things in the Kit are the "mini cards".  These are double-sided and could be laminated or layered on a greeting card.  There are instructions in the book on how to make fridge magnets from them.

The ways that you can use the kit are limited only by your creativity.  Add buttons, bows and doodads!  As long as you use them for personal use only you can use them any way that you like.  Why not scan them, resize them if necessary, and use them on journal pages or trace them into your bible journal? 

Some goodies from the kit

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Monday, September 11, 2017

In Joined Hands There is Hope

ATC, Rubber Stamps, Inktense, Pen

This is a real mixed media extravaganza!  First I stamped various stamps on white cardstock, dripped Inktense Blocks, and collaged dyed napkin for a background.  The focal point is stamped on tissue paper and the script added with a Platinum Carbon Ink Fountain Pen.  I'm using gel medium for collage now and loving it!

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

It All Started With Napkins

I've reentered the world of mixed media.  It all started with napkins, and I think my sister, Dianne, was the original instigator of this expedition.  That sand dollar you see on the journal page above is cut from a napkin.

The last time I dabbled in mixed media I didn't quite understand the whole napkin craze.  Now I'm hooked on them.  I love their translucency.

Before I knew it I'd organized a napkin swap at the local ATC group, bought gel medium and a few more tubes of acrylic paint and I'm slopping it all around with wild abandon.

Stay tuned - I'm working on some Artist Trading Cards...

Friday, August 25, 2017

Star, Branch, Spiral, Fan: Learn to Draw from Nature's Perfect Design Structures

I knew from the first moment that I saw this book that I had to have it.  Yellena James' drawings are magical.  (You can get a quick taste of her art here, on her Instagram account.)

The book did not disappoint.  Yellena obviously put as much time and care into this book as she does to her paintings.  I'd like to thank Quarto for sending it to me.

After a brief chapter about design elements and principles, there is a chapter for each of the four design structures found in nature, and then a final chapter entitled, "Putting it All Together".  Each of the four chapters contains the same great content combined in different ways:
  • Four to six pages of individual drawings showing where the shape is found in nature.  For example, the first page of drawings in the star chapter shows 6 different star creatures found in the ocean, each meticulously drawn in beautiful color.  Another shows snowflakes, and another shows different flowers.
  • Three or more pages of technical line drawings and instructions, combining geometry, math and science.  Here you might get out your old geometry compass or go on a field trip to collect and study branches from plants.  These pages are a fascinating look at nature's structures.
  • Exercises where you practice drawing the specific elements:  spiral shaped shells or abstract fan shapes, for example.  The step-by-step instructions are explained clearly.  
  • Exercises where you practice design elements and principles like color, pattern, or movement, and
  • Exercises where you complete compositions begun by Yellena.
"Putting it all together" helps you to revisit the design elements and principles and to practice putting all of the structures together.  She reminds us to "look to nature - the greatest designer of all" if we ever run out of inspiration.

I often borrow books from my local library, but this is a book that you'll want to own, because it includes lots of pages where you practice drawing next to her beautiful samples, completing compositions, for example.

You can read more about Yellana's book on her website, here.  At this link you will find visual examples of the pages I have described here.  This is one book that you really have to experience visually!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Cute Idea for Book Signature Threads

I found a cute idea for finishing the ends of the threads on a handmade book.  

I found it on Vintage Junk Journals. There are so many good ideas on this site!

All of the signatures in my new junk journal have a calendar page for the innermost page.

Debbie-Anne uses punched hearts for all of her junk journals, but I used punchies and hand cut shapes based on the theme of the page.

I glued matching shapes to the ends of both threads, sandwiching the two threads between the two punchies.

Fun, eh?

Monday, August 14, 2017

New Junk Journal

I finished making a new junk journal.  It contains all kinds of papers from my (OK, extensive) paper stash - ledger paper, painted paper, calendar pages, coloring book pages, gelli-prints, etc., etc., etc.)

I bound six signatures into an old book cover:

Tuesday, August 8, 2017


These are a couple of Artist Trading Cards I created using a handcarved stamp.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

World Changing Wednesdays

I did these for July #Letteringforchange.

These longer quotations chosen by Justine are wonderful, and they're a challenge for me.  Sometimes I just choose a sentence.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

When Life Gives You Lemons...

make artist trading cards!

Here you can see the foam stamp made by one of our Vancouver Artist Trading Card members.  She made these for our swap a few months ago.  Ingenious, eh?

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

And While the Sewing Machine Was Out.....

I made a junk journal out of a file folder.

Rose brought one of these that she made to the last Vancouver Artist Trading Card Swap.

I sewed old book paper, ledger paper and scrapbook paper to it.

Some people make journaling cards to put in the pockets.

Mine is currently holding bookmarks ready for The Bookmark Project.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Follow the Spark: A New Junk Journal

"Follow the spark", Penelope our Vancouver Artist Trading Card organizer, said.  She credited Nick Bantock for this instruction on chasing down passing inspiration.

"This would make a great book", Rose said.  "See how it folds out?"  Rose brings lots of interesting stuff to put on our "free table" at the swap.  Apparently, this was junk mail with potential!

I couldn't resist, and brought it home.  It didn't sit for long - that spark just wouldn't go away.

I sewed paper on it, including this map from a Paris Brochure,

book paper, scrapbook paper

ledger paper

an architect's plan, music

I'm collecting embellishments that I'll store in this envelope I included.

Where is the spark leading you?