Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Artist Trading Cards

I am lucky enough to be part of a group of artists called the Sister's in Art Society (SAS), this month we had our annual Valentine's party and exchanged ATC's and other wonderful handmade items. Here are some samples of my cards, the backgrounds were made using Distress Inks that had been watered down. The blank cards were pressed into one wash, dried with an iron and then pressed into another wash. I added specialty paper, the stamped face, rhinestone embellishment and fibers to finish it off.

Close ups....

I love these Distress Ink's by from Ranger. They were developed by Tim Holtz, he has some great demo's on his website here.

I am still grinding my way through my website design class, there are episodes  of extreme panic followed by "whew, maybe I'm not a dumb as I thought" moments. I foresee extended periods of hair pulling and wine drinking when I actually do sit down and attempt it on my own. Til the next time I leave you with this slightly out of focus studio cat picture, enforcing the motto that one's feet (paws) can never be too clean. Apollo has a slightly obssessive compulsive thing about keeping his toes clean. He likes to sit on my lap while we watch TV and it's a little distracting when you are trying to watch Lost and he is gnawing away at his toe jam.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Now on Facebook!

Well, I finally did it and set up a facebook page, as soon as I get my new cell phone (hopefully soon) I can get on Twitter too. Started my website design course at Whatcom Community College also so my poor brain is pretty full with all this computer stuff. Of course you need to know that when I was in college, those new fangled things called the PC and Mac were just coming into vogue. I remember the college computer being some big giant thing that took up a whole room, and boy that was pretty cool! And since I am on the technology nostalgia road now, what about the first cell phone I ever had? Remember the "brick" phones, yup, I had one and thought I was all that. You could have used that thing as weapon and killed someone with it if you hit them over the head. Of course now my phone is so cute and petite half the time I can't find it in my purse when it falls to the bottom. And you don't even want to know what the Spousal Unit and I paid for our first home PC....gah!

The youngsters today take it all for granted, but for those of us who are little more "vintage" learning to use all the hardware and software and techno toys that have come along in the last 20 or 30 years has not been so easy sometimes! Of course that being said I cannot live without my cell phone, computer, DVR, iPod and Wii and long for one of those Roomba vaccuums.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Mixed Backgrounds

Finally, a new post! I did go off the grid for a while, Studio Cat #1 was pretty sick for about two weeks with a bad sinus infection, so I was nursing her back to health, including having to force feed her three times a day. Good news is she is mostly back to her normal, bitchy princess self. I did manage to spend a little time in the studio and started messing around with some backgrounds, using stencils, foam stamps, crackle paint and distress inks. Here are my favorites.

Spray inks and liquid watercolor work great when sprayed over a stencil, very messy though, wear gloves or say goodbye to your pretty french manicure. The green and lavender patterns on the center and upper left tags are foams stamp inked up with some acrylic paint.

Progress has also been made on the ArtFest trades 40 down and 60 more to go! Charms are always a common trade so this year I took 3/8 metal washers, colored them with Pinata inks, stamped with some Brilliance ink, wrapped them with two colors of craft wire and finished them off with a jump ring. They kind of remind me of that circle thing that Iron Man has in his chest in movie, but with way more flair!

I went to our local harware mecca, Hardware Sales to get my washers, they are the antitheses of the big box stores, family owned, closed on Sundays and the employees actually want to help you and know where stuff is. The store is also huge, all the parts of it cover almost an entire city block so for the mixed media freak like myself you can spend hours in there discovering things in nooks and crannies and thinking about how you can alter it. Dryer vent filter....hmmm....lets cut that up, spray paint it, throw on some glitter and a voila, you have some neat embellishments. Never mind the nut/screw/washer aisles, holy cow, there are hundreds of possibilites there. Of course the nice helpful nut/screw/washer man always asks me if I need assistance after I have been wandering and pondering for an hour, thinking I must really not have a clue because obviously the spousal unit sent me here for something and now I can't find it. I tell them I am collecting things to make mixed media and art pieces out of and they seem a little taken aback because this artsy fartsy chick has invaded this manly bastion of serious hardware stuff and instead of these washers being used for a important purpose, like fixing a leaky toilet, now they will be defiled with paint and rubber stamps? WTH? Hey, that sounds like a great class, making art pieces just using stuff from the hardware store, I think I'll start working on that.

And now on a more serious note I want to send good karma and hugs to all my art friends who have supported me, helped me keep the faith in my work and said they liked my stuff even at the time I knew it was dreck. Last week was a not a great week for me, there were some folks who were not very nice to me and even though I know it is supposed to be water off the proverbial ducks back it still stung. In thinking about it over the weekend I realized that in the big scale of my life, the side with my dear friends is heavy and full, while the side with the nasty people is light and small. So, that is my profound thought for the day and my love to not only my friends but to those people in this world who choose to take the high road and make their interactions with their fellow woman a positive one.