Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Coloring with Jacki

I've never tried posting a video before, but thought I would at least see if it were possible. It was, wow! This is a clip of some of the coloring technique Jacki showed me while I was at her house. I wish I had thought to get the camera earlier, because I have a hard time remembering stuff like this. Jacki had let me go through some of her stamped images that she hadn't done anything with, and I thought this image would be really neat to see colored.

Pray that Jacki and I still have a friendship after she sees what I've done, lol!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

I'm back...

...and with a deeper understanding of Who God is in my life, His regard for me, and a peace that I have not had in awhile. It was an amazing time.

I spent five days at a Christian retreat center, four days with a woman with an amazing ministry (she was ordained while I was there), and three days with Jacki Jones (The Card Castle). Actually, I missed one day with Jacki as I was not feeling at all well, so that was hard. But we did have a good time otherwise. Jacki gave me some great tutoring with colored pencil technique, which I was desperate for, lol!

I discovered Sunday that the gift shop in which I had been selling cards, journals, etc, went out of business! I knew the owner was really struggling, but was very startled nonetheless. I have to admit my reaction was one of relief, not disappointment. Selling there forced me to learn cardmaking; I really was pathetic in the beginning, and got into stamping to SELL STAMPS, not make cards. When the business for which I had bought tons of stuff to sell along with (they provided stamps and stamp pads only, no papers, few embellishments, etc) went under, selling cards seemed to be the only way to bring in some money. So, it's been good for me. But I have for quite some time now felt like the amount of time I spent creating for the store was now limiting me; there was NO time for just playing around, mastering techniques that did not come easily to me, etc. All cards needed to be within certain parameters in time spent, size, cost, etc, in order to keep them at one price.

Now, I am released! Does it mean I begin to design stamps as I'd been hoping all along? Or maybe go a new direction once I've reduced some of my sale inventory? No idea! But I am going to enjoy a stress-free fall! My schedule is much freer now, though I still need to prepare for the annual craft fair I do at a local college in December. I have tons of stamps to sell, and now, tons of cards and a few journals, so I have plenty to keep me busy!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

I'm heading south...

I'm going to be flying to Atlanta, Georgia this morning, for a time alone with God for a few days, then a visit to a lovely person who has a real gift of hospitality and personal ministry, and then to see Jacki Jones of The Card Castle! It's going to be a wonderful time!

So, unless I get access to a computer at some point, I won't be posting again until Monday, September 29th.

So long!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Dragonfly domino

This is one I should have photographed; the green of the front is a much richer, deeper green, and the fern background lines are much subtler.

In between doing the front and back, I evidently mixed up the felt-covered wood blocks I use for alcohol inks. If it's not obvious from the felt, I write the color family or combo on the wood (so I have a bunch of blocks all prepped). Somehow, I grabbed the brown block, and so when I applied more green and applied it to the domino, I was amazed at what I got! I tried lightening it, but as I tried blending it in, it just went back to being to dark, hence the lighter areas in the middles - I gave up! I have several different types of green, so it took until I tried using my brown block a few days later - and got green - that I solved the mystery! Somehow, I like it anyway, but I'm not sure if the same person who would like the top, would like the bottom. Hmmm...


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Sci Fi dominos

The first dominos I posted, even though I felt there was an elegance to them, also had a bit of an outer space look to them, so I played around with the same inks to deliberately create that effect. I tried for a less solid look, more like suns, maybe on the first domino, then a more solid planet look the second time. I don't normally go such a bizarre direction, but I was having enough fun with it that I unthinkingly made domino earrings to match as well. Now that's really weird! :-)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Dominos with alcohol inks

I've been working off and on with dominos for awhile, to sell at the City News & Daily Grind my friend Cheryl owns. I love alcohol inks, so I am using them quite a bit. These dominoes are black, and without the gold I added to the mix, it would have been difficult to see any color. The colors are Red Pepper, Cranberry, and Rust. I probably photographed this set several dozen times, but no matter what the lighting, I could not get a true representation of the look. They really look amazing! I gold-embossed the holes on the opposite sides of each, as you see below. It's a little challenging to scrape off the gold splatters. I'm still working on technique for this; the domino was "clean" when I went to heat-set the embossing powder, but it bubbled over a bit, hence the splatters and gold around the rims. I can scrape it off, but I still have to be very careful or the ink comes off as well.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Think on these things...

"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." Philippians 4:8

This was the scripture for the SALT challenge, and a challenging one for me to apply just now. It's an important instruction, but sometimes life presents us stuff that makes it difficult to remember what is true, noble, right, pure, etc. People can wound and betray us, job situations can demoralize us, difficult family situations can overwhelm us, sometimes it can even seem as if God has forgotten us. And sometimes it's not about trauma and tragedy, it just seems like the path from A to B is through the sewer, and it's hard to think about anything besides the smell!

But I am reminded that just a few verses later, in the same chapter, we are told that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. He can help us to put our focus where it needs to be. And maybe, even in the sewer, we can catch the scent of a Rose.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Fruit of the spirit journal

Vellum is always tricky to work with: not every ink will adhere to it, and some inks will spread a bit, making for a blurred image. Embossing looks great, but often warps the vellum. I weight it down after embossing for a day or two before trying to attach it if it has warped. I usually don't have a problem, but I once had a couple of cards I had to remove from the store ... I called them "botulism cards" because of the bubbling the vellum caused, warping the cardstock on top of it.

The wallpaper background made the choice of scripture obvious. :-) The fruit on the purple border is gold embossed on gold. It looks much nicer than the photo showed.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

let your spirit dance

Now we're no longer living life in color, but we're dancing! :-) I had fun doing this journal ... I don't know what it is about black and white, but it seemed right.. I originally was going to do a music theme, since that lends itself well to black and white, but decided that was too "predictable"!