Thursday, January 27, 2011


A few weeks ago I told you about my goals for the coming year, and I'm glad to say that I've made some progress.  I'm working on the final project for the Paint and Mix Color Unit in Cindy Wider's Draw and Paint in Your Pyjamas Certificate course.  If all goes well I should be done with it by Monday.  These are the rocks I painted the other day.

On the card-making front, I'm happy to report that I've been chosen for the Class Act Design Team.  My term starts at the end of February, but I'll be adding links to their site and challenge blog before then.  The Class Act image collection strikes just the right balance between cuteness and realism, and they're versatile and very usable; not gimmicky or overly trendy so I'm really looking forward to working with them.

Speaking of things to look forward to, it's almost time for the next edition of the Technique Junkies Newsletter. I've seen all of the beautiful artwork created by Pat the design team so I can tell you that you won't be disappointed!  Pat is also releasing a new CD soon.  We'll be doing a blog hop on February 1st to introduce the CD so be sure to stop by.

I have one more card to share with you from the Dec/Jan newsletter before we move on to February's edition.  I used the Bricks technique with scraps of printed paper in pastel shades and copper patina colored embossing powder.  The butterfly image is from I Brake for Stamps, and it's stamped in Adirondack pesto ink and colored with Prismacolor pencils. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Really? Haven't we had enough?

I'm dressed in polar fleece from head to toe today.  This is why:

Issued at: 3:18 PM EST 1/23/11, expires at: 12:00 AM EST 1/24/11

Wind chill warning in effect from midnight tonight to 9 am est monday,
The NWS in taunton has issued a wind chill warning, which is in effect from midnight tonight to 9 am est monday. The wind chill watch is no longer in effect.
Locations, southwest New Hampshire, central and western Massachusetts and hartford county Connecticut.
Hazards, dangerously cold wind chill values.
Wind chill values, 25 to 35 degrees below zero.
Winds, northwest 5 to 10 mph.
Temperatures, 10 to 25 degrees below zero.
Timing, late tonight through mid morning Monday
Precautionary/preparedness actions,
A wind chill warning is issued when the wind chill index is likely to fall to -25 degrees or colder for at least 3 hours. A wind chill index below -30 can bring about frostbite in as little as 10 minutes. Outdoor exposure should be limited. If you are heading outdoors, dress in layers and keep your hands and head covered to protect against frostbite

Oh, and there's more snow headed this way for Wednesday.  Really?  Is that entirely necessary, Mother Nature?

At least this crappy weather means that I have plenty of time to spend in my studio.  I've been working through the acrylic painting unit of my Draw and Paint in Your Pyjamas course.  I painted this tree the other day, and at the moment, I'm painting some rocks.  It's fun, but boy do I have a lot to learn!

Thanks for stopping by my Studio.  Stay warm out there!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Six Inchies of Snow

We're expecting yet another 6 inches of snow tonight so I thought this would be the perfect time to share my latest batch of inchies, made for a Winter/Snow inchie swap.  The six inchies were fun.  The six inches coming tonight, I don't know...not so much.

I used tons of different stamps, inks, techniques and what-not, but as best I can recall I'll try to give the details.  From left to right, starting with the top row:

1.  This one uses a technique I invented using Fiskars texture plates.  Just rub the plate with a couple colors of Ranger Distress Ink, spritz with a little water and lay a piece of paper on top for a second or two and the remove the paper and let dry.  The snowflake plate that I used here makes some amazing snowy skies.  The sentiment is from smARTworks and I embossed the whole thing with clear embossing powder.

2.  The background is light blue card stock sprayed with some Smooch Spritz.  The snowflake is embossed with white EP and highlighted with some Stickles.

3.  I stamped the little penguin with grey ink, did some simple coloring, cut him out and mounted him to a scrap of printed paper.  The inchie is glazed with Ranger Glossy Accents.  Once everything was dry, I added a small green crystal.

4.  I stamped the image with blue chalk ink onto lavender paper and highlighted the snowflake with a silver glitter pen and a lavender crystal.  This one is also glazed with Glossy Accents.

5.  These penguins are part of a much larger stamp by Serendipity.  I stamped them with black ink onto printed paper, embossed with clear EP and colored with Prismacolor pencils.

6.  For this one, I stamped the fourish, from I Brake for Stamps, onto a scrap of printed paper and embossed with ivory/gold EP. 

Thanks for stopping by my studio!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

And the Winner is...

I shook my iPhone for a random number, and the winner a Technique Junkies Fancy Folds and Motion Paper Crafts CD is Faith in Florida.  Congratulations, Faith! 

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Fabulous Friday on Saturday

This week's Fabulous Friday challenge at Frosted Designs, Use Paint, is sponsored by Technique Junkie and several cards made by TJ designers are featured on their blog today.  For my card, I made a silly little Valentine using a tutorial from the Aug/Sep 2010 newsletter called Acrylic Emboss.  I also sponged a Martha Stewart doily with pink paint to match my card.  My jittery little creature is Zot, a DoodleFactory Creature available at Starving Artistamps.

Look like fun?  You can play along and maybe even with a prize.  Post a link to your project using paint on the Frosted Designs blog by noon, January 20th and you'll be entered to with a copy of the Technique Junkie Fancy Folds and Motion Paper Crafts CD and a 1-year online subscription to the newsletter.  Sweet!

Friday, January 14, 2011

I'm a Design Junkie and Loving It

I was always sure it would be, but with a few months as a design team member under my belt, I can absolutely say that this is one sweet gig.  I get to play with art supplies, Pat and the other team members are awesome, and the Technique Junkies tutorials are just doesn't get any better!

The design team collectively maintains a blog, Design Junkies, featuring techniques from the various newsletters, CDs and the website that Pat publishes.  I contribute on the second and fourth Friday of each month and since this is the second Friday in January, I have a card to share.  The technique I chose to feature is called Pencil Highlights and it was published in the Sept./Oct. 2010 issue of the newsletter.  The stamp I used for the technique (on the background panel) is from Rubber Stampede.   The rose, which I embossed with Ranger Tea Dye Distress Embossing Powder, is from the DoodleFactory Backlit Blooms collection from Starving Artistamps.

When we post cards to the Design Junkies blog we index them by technique name, and we've started to build a nice gallery of samples.   If you're a newsletter subscriber looking for recent examples of older techniques, be sure to grab a cuppa sometime and give the blog a browse.  For those of you who aren't subscribers yet :), there's still plenty of inspiration to be had so grab a cuppa and head on over there too.

Thanks for stopping by my studio, and Happy Friday!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Little Drawings

Last week I told you about my big plans for the year, and those goals will take up a good portion of my time.  But what if I need a little instant gratification along the way?  My rubber stamping hobby fills part of that need.  Cards are quick to make (in theory, anyway), and making them gives me opportunity to experiment with my art supplies. 

But what if I want to do some instant gratification artwork that is entirely my own?  For me, the answer is to work small.  I've fallen in love with the Artist Trading Card (ATC) format and find that the 2.5" x 3.5" size is just perfect for practicing and experimenting.  Small enough so that I can finish a drawing in about and hour, but still large enough to allow for a fair amount of detail. 

These are a few of the ATC's I did for the holidays.  With the exception of the poinsettia with I painted with acrylics, all are colored pencil on Bristol vellum.

Christmas Poinsettia

A miniature version of my 2010 Christmas card.

My little chef nutcracker.

Santa Nutcracker

Soldier Nutcracker

Snowman Ornament
Thanks for stopping by my studio today!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year!

Wow.  I know.  Long time, no blog.  It's not that I didn't have anything to show you and it's not that I didn't have anything to say.  It's just that day after day, I just never seemed to find the time to get here.  All in all, I had a very busy and thoroughly enjoyable holiday season.  I hope yours was wonderful, too!

So now it's January and time to get serious about a few things I've been trying to accomplish.  I don't really believe in making resolutions because I've always found them to be counterproductive.  Too often we resolve to do things that aren't completely in our control, and when we can't accomplish them we feel like we've failed.  I'd rather have goals to work toward and give myself the flexibility to adjust those goals if I need to. 

One goal I have is to finish up a couple of classes I've been taking.  The first one is Cindy Wider's Draw and Paint in Your Pyjamas certificate course that I've been working on for the last year.  I've learned so much, and my confidence has really grown, but now it's time to finish!  I'm going to be pretty busy with that for the next few weeks, and I'll try to keep you up to date on my progress here on my blog.

Although I haven't finished Cindy's course yet, I've begun training to be an instructor for the course on her website,  So my next obvious goal is to finish the instructor training and start teaching.  If any of you out there reading this are like I was and always wished you could draw, I'm here to tell you that you CAN draw.  You just need some guidance, some encouragement, and some practice. need lots of practice most likely, but it is something you can do.  If you're interested in giving it a try let me know, or visit Cindy's site.  She has a free two-week trial available so that you can preview the course if you wish.

Another goal of mine is to revamp this blog and improve my web presence.  I've purchased the rights to the domain and plan to build a website with galleries for my artwork and cards.  I plan to make some of my work available for sale.  As I said, my confidence has really grown, and I feel ready to take that next step.  My plan is to sell original drawings and paintings, commissioned portrait drawings, as well as greeting cards and other craft items that I make.

Speaking of greeting cards, I'll be continuing my on-going rubber stamping obsession, excuse me, hobby, because I just plain love it.  It is an active goal of mine to get onto one more design team in addition to Starving Artistamps and Technique Junkies.  I'd also like to see if I can get some more of my work published, but with everything else I have planned, I'm not sure how much time I'll really devote to that one.

So there you have grand plan, or part of it at least.  I've got other things in the works, but I'll save those for another post.

If you're still reading this post, thanks for hanging in there!  I'd love it if you'd leave me a comment so I know who my most faithful blog readers are.  Come to think of it, you deserve a reward.  I have an extra copy of the Technique Junkie Newsletter Fancy Folds and Motion Paper Crafts CD to give away.  Leave me that comment by January 15th, and I'll enter you in a drawing to win the CD.

Just one last thing before I go...I have a card to share with you.  I made this one for the December 2010 issue of the Technique Junkies Newsletter using the Deconstructed Collage tutorial.  The stamp is from I Brake for Stamps, and the papers are from Basic Grey.

Happy New Year!