Monday, February 25, 2008

TipTop journal exchange ~ for Peggy!

(Click on the scan for more detail)
I am really enjoying the Tip Top Journal exchange I am in with Frieda Oxenham , Debby Harriettha, Abby Lazar, Angie Hall Haviland, Caryl Hoobler, Judy Evitts, Paula Dion, Peggy Gato, and Terrie Lightfoot - wow! What a crew of talented artists. Each month Frieda pairs us with another artist and we create a spread of pages for her, sending just the pages. How refreshing!

On February 15th Frieda announced Peggy Gato & I were paired up. : ) We have a month to create our spread and everyone uses the same journal with removable pages to make it easy. Peggy's TipTop Journal theme is "A song to remember". This was a challenge for me until I decided I should use a song that has a lot of meaning for me . . . Sideways by Santana.
This is a special song for Steven & I that we first heard (and played a lot) when we were falling in love.

Steven found the lyrics for me on-line a couple of years ago, when I was curious to what was being said as I couldn't make out some of the words! I copied the words to a word document and changed the font, then printed them mirror image onto a transparency sheet so that the smooth shiny side would face outward instead of the rough side you print on : )

I combined the lyrics I had printed with a huge variety of Alpha Stamps images that were very romantic and appropriate, put together like a patchwork, with care not to obscure the lyrics. Some of the images are transparency images from both the Tallulah's Kisses sheet and Paris Showgirls #1 -- and some are collage sheet images from the Alpha Stamps Pendant Kit, Round Pendants, Valentine Bird Hearts , Tallulah's Nudes #1, and I used one fabric image from Alpha Stamps Lover's sheet, ooh la la! I wonder if Leslie from Alpha Stamps realizes how many romantic images she has now? ~ : ^ ) I used tacky glue to attach some of the images and a roll of xyron adhesive for the transparency images and the transparency with the lyrics. I used my bone folder and burnished a lot.
I finished the piece by adding some color to the pages with my watercolour crayons and a water brush and tried out a new white gel pen my friend and artist Carla Kurt gave me for my birthday when we met with our husbands for dinner on Saturday. I just love how this pen finished my spread of pages, thank you so much, Carla! I added a Moo card (mini card) as a Tag and happily sent this off to Peggy today!

Whenever I read these lyrics, the song plays in my head and I feel cherished and loved. Thank you Peggy, for this opportunity!!! To see all of my TipTop journal pages so far, follow this link.




Santana – Sideways

You know it ain’t easy
For these thoughts here to leave me
No words to describe it
In French or in English
'Cause diamonds they fade
And Flowers they bloom
And I'm tellin' you

These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
They've been knockin' me out lately
Whenever you come around me
These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
I keep thinkin' in a moment that
Time will take them away
These feelings won't go away
These feelings won't go away . . .
It ain’t easy
For these thoughts here to leave me
There are no words to describe it
In French or in English
'Cause diamonds they fade
(diamonds they fade)
And flowers they bloom
(flowers they bloom)
And I'm tellin'you

These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
They've been knockin' me out lately
Whenever you come around me
These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
I keep thinkin' that in a moment that
Time will take them away

These feelings won't go away . . .

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Empty Mailbox Contest!

Click on any scan for more detail.
Ginny Carter Smallenburg, over at Small Studio is having a little contest. It's going on through the end of this month, so if you work fast, you can still get an entry to her in time (Sorry! The contest ended 2/29/08). It seems that Ginny got a P.O. Box so she could receive snail mail orders and checks. Every day when she went to mail her orders for Small Studio she found the P.O. Box EMPTY! Ginny decided to turn that around by having an Empty Mailbox Contest -you can read the details here.

Ginny's mail clerk, Josh had been teasing her about her empty mailbox. Hmmm. From what I've seen it looks like she's received at least 15 or 20 pieces of mail already and there is still a weeks to go! To view ALL of the entries, follow this link to Ginny's blog.

On the 29th of this month Josh and his co-workers at Ginny's post office will decide which piece of mail impressed them the most. Ginny will award a $35.00 Gift Certificate to her web-based business Small Studio. Wow! I really had fun creating my envelope for her. On the front I used a variety of rubber stamps which I stamped with StazOn Inks: Claudia Rose (envelopes, talking mailbox, A message for you, tiny sayings), Stampers Anonymous (LETTERS box), an old DIVA rubber saying (not available) and a few others. The Art postage stamp is one you might recognize if you read my blog regularly. I created it at zazzle.com from a scan of an ATC that I made recently for an International swap. Here's the back of the envelope; I think Josh & his co-workers will enjoy it! After I stamped with StazOn, I used watercolor pencils and my water brush to add a little zip!

Ginny is the former owner of the Creative Block in Westlake OH. She created and organized the Art Continuum, an annual art event which ran for 8 years in Cleveland OH. This is where I have met Ginny before. She is also the originator of the Stampers Anonymous stamp line and continued to be the Creative Director until very recently.

The back of the envelope I stamped has a variety of mostly older stamps that have been in my collection for 15 years. The "ART is just another way of keeping a diary" is a Stampers Anonymous stamp -enjoy!

p.s. Ginny posted my envelope on her blog after she received it . . . scroll down to see what she wrote, what fun!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

February 21st, 1957

* happy birthday to me! *

This is one of my favorite photos, taken of my mother and me, when I was just a babe in 1957. Isn't it amazing? I have used this photo in my art before, and you can see an Altered Book page I did in Clarissa Sharp's book for a AB RR we were involved in together in 2002, HERE on my website.

I did a little research on the year 1957 and found out that the average price of a car was only $2,100. A gallon of milk was just $1.00! The average price of a loaf of bread the year I was born was just .19 cents and the average price of a postage stamp in 1957 was .03 cents, wow!

Below right, my mom & I last summer : ^) she's wearing a shirt I stamped!!


February facts and Trivia :
"According to the Georgian calendar, February is the second month of the year, and also the shortest month." February has 28 days until Julius Caesar gave it 29, and 30 days every four years. According to tradition, Augustus, the Roman emperor, took one day off to add one day to August, the month named after him. We now have February with 28 days

"The second day of February is often referred to as Ground Hog's Day." Legend says a ground hog comes out of it's burrow on February 2, to look for it's shadow. If there is sunshine and he sees his shadow, then he goes back to sleep and there will be more winter time. If he doesn't, then the spring time will begin.

The amethyst is the birthstone for February.

The primrose is the flower for the month of February.

The Anglo Saxons called February Sol-monath (cake-month), because cakes were offered to the gods during tht month.

In Scotland it is thought unlucky to be born on a Leap Year's Day which occurs every four years in February.

1957 * Feb 25, Buddy Holly and the Crickets recorded "That'll Be the Day."

1957 * May 10, Sid Vicious, [John Simon Ritchie], bassist (Sex Pistols), was born in England.

1957 * Jun 24, "I Love Lucy," last aired on CBS-TV.

1957 * Sep 22, The TV series "Maverick" premiered on ABC.

1957 * Oct 4, The television series "Leave It to Beaver" premiered on CBS. It ended in 1963.

1957 * Oct 21, The film "Jailhouse Rock" starring Elvis Presley opened.

1957 * Nov 3, The Soviet Union launched into orbit Sputnik Two, the second manmade satellite; a dog on board named Laika, the first animal in space, was sacrificed in the experiment. Sputnik 2 remained in orbit another 162 days before burning up. Safe reentry process had not yet been developed.

1957 * Nov 29, John Coltrane and the Thelonius Monk quartet performed together for a show at Carnegie Hall. Tapes of the performance, recorded by Voice of America, were mislabeled and lost until 2005

1957 * Alexander Calder (1898-1976) made his black standing piece "Seven-Foot Beastie." 1957 * Martin Luther King wrote his autobiography "Stride Toward Freedom."

1957 * MGM closed its cartoon studio in a panic over diminishing audiences due to television. William Hanna and Joe Barbera (1911-2006) formed their own company and began making cartoons for TV.

1957 * Bobby Helms recorded "Jingle Bell Rock."1957 Commercial jet travel began to grow.

1957 * Boxer Middleweight Sugar Ray Robinson lost, won and lost his title.

~ just some fun stuff for my birthday! Now I am off to celebrate with Steven!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Cyber Fyber Update

To the right, the postcard I created for for cyber fyber . . . .

Update! Susan Lenz, who is orchestrating Cyber Fyber, recently posted an update on her Journal for Cyber Fyber that just tickled me! Now, many of you who know how I work probably won't be surprised, but Susan wrote in her journal on February 7th, "SOME OF THE TRADES ARE ARRIVING HERE! . . . . . Lenna Andrews' was the first to arrive followed by Pam Snow's."

That is so cool, my trade being the first to arrive! A big thanks to Dawn Sellers for letting me know about this exhibit and trade through our Fabric Book RR. If you don't know about the Cyber Fyber Exhibition I will quote from Susan's website:

Cyber Fyber is an exhibition of international fiber art scheduled for January 8th through 20th, 2009 at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street in downtown Columbia, South Carolina, USA. The brainchild of Susan Lenz, this exhibit will focus on the supportive, global community of fiber artists with whom Susan regularly shares new techniques, contemporary approaches to textiles, and finished work by Internet websites and blogs. The exhibition will include three primary areas: Fiber ATCs (Artist Trading Cards); fiber postcards; and the work of several invited artists. The exhibition will also include FIBER DAY and ATC trading day. From the beginning, Susan Lenz is documenting CYBER FYBER on a blog/journal.

The ATC I made and traded with Susan is below. This ATC along with all the other ATCs and postcards that are being traded will be the art that is shown in the exhibition next January, mentioned above. Wow!

It looks like as of this date, Susan still has postcards & ATCs to trade. There will also be an INTERNATIONAL RANDOM ATC TRADE that you can send in ATCs for, so if you have a blog or a website (for the cyber fyber trading) go visit Susan at any of the links above! You could be part of the exhibition too : )



To see what Susan sent ME in trade - go to this post or you can virtually visit my studio, here and see where I am displaying her wonderful fiber artwork!

Enjoy the day, Lenna

Monday, February 18, 2008

HoTpinK + ORaNge ATCs: Colour Groupies

WOW! Here are all my HoTpinK + ORaNge ATCs featuring Alpha Stamps transparency images, for members of the Colour Groupies artist group:
Frieda Oxenham ::: Debby Harriettha ::: Tristan Robin Blakeman ::: Caryl Hoobler and me! Everyone in the group has received my ATCs for this month's exchange, so now I am free to share them with you. The group is designed so the ATCs will be a surprise! No scans can be uploaded until everyone receives. The Colour Groupies group is hosting a colour-combination ATC swap every month in 2008 for it's 5 members. January's colour combo was Black & Gold, February is HoTpinK + OranGe, and next month is Brown + Robin's egg blue . . . . . mmmmm. Some how-to's follow below the scans.

I made this one for Tristan:


















And this one for Debby (to the right):










This one I made for Caryl: (below)


















This one was made for Frieda: (to the right)









And one for ME! (below)












: ) I made these all similarly, but different with similar trims, buttons, ribbon and fabrics. Each ATC uses a Transparency image from Alpha Stamps layered on top of an off-white tissue paper with bits of music notes embedded into it; except for Caryl's as her image is on top of plain white paper. I sewed the transpareny images to the paper and then glued the transparency-paper sandwich to the fabric front. I glued the rick-rack and buttons on with tacky glue, then added warm & natural cotton batting in the middle, backed each ATC with another piece of hot pink & orange fabric & sewed both pieces together with the batting in the middle.

The images come from 2 wonderful Tallulah's sheets at Alpha Stamps, Paris Showgirls and Kisses. I have a new sewing machine that is computerized, a Brother 60-Stitch Computerized Free-Arm Sewing Machine,which is amazing compared to my last machine - but did not break the bank! You can see how I used these HOT pink + Orange ATCs as a way to check out what the machine could do. Thanks again to my fellow group members - what a blast it is to share art with you on a colour-combo theme!

ATC for Alpha Stamps Yahoo Group Lotto


I created this quick & easy ATC as an entry for the Monthly Lot-O-Rama on the Alpha Stamps Yahoo Group. Enter one ATC by uploading a photo of it, and you have a chance to win ALL of the ATCs entered! I started creating this ATC by stamping the image of Anne Warwick onto tracing paper with tinted embossing ink and sprinkling black detail embossing powder over the wet ink. A quick blast with my heat gun and it was all melted, shiny and raised. I put this embossed image aside and looked through my collage bits for something good to layer underneath the tracing paper, which is semi-transparent. I thought the old music paper worked best and attached both with a glue stick. You can just see some music notes on her forehead! Then I thought Anne needed a little something more, even as gracious and chic as she was, so I tried stamping a small image that said "chic" onto tracing paper as well - this time with StazOn ink. This small image is part of a larger set; the Gypsy clear stamp set available through Alpha Stamps. All that was left to do was finish it off with a thin line of silver metallic ink. VoilĂ ! Simple & fun to do, enjoy!
*On March 1st, Teri Calia won a random drawing on the Alpha Stamps Yahoo group and won all of the ATCs (7)! I sent my ATC off to her on March 11th, when I returned home from Florida.

Family: Decklin + Tina visit!

I have been busy with family this weekend as my son Decklin and his girlfriend came down from Cambridge, MA to celebrate my birthday a little early. I will turn 51 on February 21 , and that seems impossible! But then again, the fact that Decklin is now 26 and his younger brother Dallas is now 23, seems amazing too. Dallas would have come too this weekend I am sure, if he still lived on the East Coast, but he is now running his Leisure Class Records from Chicago. We miss you both, Dallas & Liz!


Decklin + Tina visit 1, originally uploaded by creativelenna.

. . . And speaking of family, I have not talked much about this except to a few friends. My dad had to have a pacemaker and a stent for an artery blockage put in last week. He is at his home in Florida now, but is still not doing too well. His heart issues seem under control, but before a very low heart rate and low blood pressure sent him to the hospital last week, he was having very bad back pain. X-rays have shown he has spurs on his spine. My sister and her family are visiting my mom & dad this week and helping out and Steven & I will arrive soon after they leave. My dad will go to a pain management DR. this week for his back, but I still worry about him. If you believe in the power of prayer or positive thinking . . . for my birthday I will ask you to give me the gift of keeping my dad in your thoughts and prayers. Thank you. He is a wonderful man; this is the best I can say, and I hate thinking of him in pain. Having this photo above of Decklin visiting here this weekend, makes me think of another favorite photo of Decklin with his Grandpa Dale in 1982. Decklin has grown up a bit don't you think?? And now he's holding a babe (our kitten star) instead of my dad holding him : )


My mom & dad in 1953:



















And below to the right, is a photo of me taken last October, with my Uncle Stan sitting to my right and my dad on my left, celebrating my dad turning 74 and my sister, 47! Plus I've added a photo of my sister & my dad, and one more very favorite happy photo of my parents at my wedding in 2005. Where does the time go? Thank you for reading this personal post, and now I am off to my studio, thinking of my family. I am very blessed. Love, lenna








Thursday, February 14, 2008

happy valentines day 2008


happy valentines day 2008, originally uploaded by creativelenna.


Now that Steven has seen this . . . I wanted to wish you all a happy Valentines Day!


Enjoy, appreciate all you have, and make sure you make time to *love* : ^ ) xo lenna



Wednesday, February 13, 2008

our latest project . . .


Feb.13-08-Vine+Leaves1, originally uploaded by creativelenna.

When we moved to our new home last fall, we knew we would do some interior painting because we did not like the yellow walls in the living room. We thought a nice off-white or neutral colour would be more soothing. When Steven & I talked about this project, we got an idea to paint the brick on the fireplace hearth too. The previous owners had painted some of the red fireplace bricks black & white (see photo below) and we wanted to change that. What a difference!!

I hand painted the vine and then used Decorator Blocks (thin, flexible foam stamps) to create the leaves. I have about 30 photos of the process up on my flickr account, you can follow this link to see the set of photos - and even view a slide show if you wish. There's info/a tutorial about wall stamping on my website - this starts with a paragraph on permanent inks & rubber stamps, but as you scroll down there is information on foam stamps & decorator blocks.

I am so happy to have finally done this! We talked about it for a while. With just Steven's painting alone, the room was transformed! But adding the hand painting & stamping really makes this home *ours* and adds a great feeling to the room. I practiced on foam board before attempting anything directly on the hearth and remembered that Steven assured me we could paint over anything if I felt it was necessary - it wasn't, as my practice paid off!

Brown Inchies RECEIVED!


Wow! These are all the Inchies I received in a swap hosted by Frieda on ATCards.com. This site is closing (02/08), but a new trading site is being set up:
http://www.atcsforall.com/ ~ Click on the picture to the left for an up close view of these luscious inchies.

My chocolate brown Inchie, you might remember from an earlier post, is in the bottom right corner and looks like a chocolate. You can tell this was my first inchie swap because my inchie is quite substantial -I was a little generous when measuring . . . oh well! Please overlook this if you received one of mine and I will try to measure better in the future.

When I decide what to do with these little chocolate gems, I will share it here. Thanks very much to all the participants in Frieda's swap and many thanks to Frieda for organizing & getting me hooked!!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Gold Inchies

This is how my most recent set of inchies (*gold inchies*) started out. I took some very thick, wrinkly & really *gold* paper (on a roll) and some lovely white mulberry paper with a gold pattern on it from my paper stash. I put these two papers together with gel medium, back to back. I folded some of the mulberry paper over onto the solid gold side & let this sandwich dry. Then, I cut my new paper into 1" strips, and then, 1" squares.


Next, I wrapped my squares with gold thread and finished them off by adding a Gold word charm from ARTchix Studio. These gold inchies look like teeny presents! If you click on the photo above, it will take you to my Flickr photo sharing account where you can see photos of the other Inchie swaps I have participated in. I only started trying out Inchie swaps recently, when I saw my friend Frieda Oxenham hosting them on ATCards.com (This site is closing (02/08), but a new trading site is being set up: http://www.atcsforall.com ). Creating these little worrks of art is more fun than I expected, and quite a nice challenge to figure out what to do on such a small space! I just received my first set of inchies back, from my first swap ~chocolate (brown) inchies! They are really incredible and I am dreaming up ways to display them : ) Thanks for looking! ~please click on any photo for more detail . . .



snow


snow, originally uploaded by creativelenna.

Sunday, Feb.10 - in Connecticut: It was snowing & snowing. This morning the temps are freezing! It read 6.5 degrees Fahrenheit when I went to take the dogs out at 7:30am - yikes!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Valentines for Flickr Swap


Valentines for Flickr Swap, originally uploaded by creativelenna.

This is the front of one of a dozen valentines I made yesterday! Ten of these are for a swap on Flickr (photo sharing website) that Pookieville is hosting called: the Valentine's Day Postcard Swap II. She's doing this through a group she created just for this on flickr. Fun! I will add a photo of the back of one of the postcards below. I used watercolor cards, Alpha Stamp Collage images and lots of rubberstamping with VersaCraft and StazOn inks. If you click on the front of the card, above - it will take you to my flicker account where you can see all the cards if you like : ))


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Nature/Fabric ATCs on ATCards.com

Fabric-Nature ATCs
I found out about this ATC swap because my friend in Scotland, Frieda Oxenham, got me interested in "Inchies" (1"x 1" square collages). I had heard of them before, but was never interested in making them until I saw what Frieda had made on her blog. By reading her blog I found out she was hosting Inchie Swaps on ATCards.com. (This site is closing (02/08), but a new trading site is being set up: http://www.atcsforall.com/ ). I've signed up for 3 Inchie swaps now and completed 2! If you'd like to see the first Inchies I made - go here.

Back to the ATCs -- while navigating around the ATCard site for Frieda's Inchie swaps, I noticed a Fabric/Nature ATC swap: Artist Trading Card = 2.5"x3.5". Mmmmm, fabric! Mmmm, nature! I checked the forum for the swap and saw that Frieda had joined this swap too, wow! And, it was something I could do; 4 to 6 cards created with fabric on a theme of Nature and due March 1st. Carol Schmidt is hosting and I am looking forward to my returns!

Here's what I did to create these ATCs: Last year I created a mixed media collage on canvas piece for a local Art Show I call Enchanted Grotto (thank you, Carla for the title!!). I wrote about the making of it with this post and there is a scan of it below (click for more detail).

This piece uses gel medium photo transfers, lots of collaged paper and even Nature Stamping using real leaves and evergreen branches. I am quite fond of it; it's framed and hanging in our dining room now. The look of this collage was what I wanted for this Nature swap. I thought and thought and then decided I would take the piece off the wall and color copy it onto prepared fabric!! I realize now I could have simply taken one of my scans of the piece to the copier -that would have been easier!! But doing it the way I did made a soft image for my ATCs.


I made extra ATCs - I have sent in 6 to trade. I took the fabric with my photo copied collage and cut it to the appropriate size for ATCs. The fabric had a fusible backing on it so I ironed it to a lightweight cardstock, ATC size. I did not feel like a plain white paper cardstock back this time, so I went looking for some silky scraps I had from practicing coloring & stamping on silk. Some pieces even had leaves stamped on the back!

I cut these scraps to size as well and then used my new sewing machine, a Brother 60-Stitch Computerized Free-Arm Sewing Machine (which I LOVE!) to sew the front and back fabrics with an overcast stitch and the lightweight cardstock in the middle for stability. After they were put together I wanted to add a little rubber stamping with VersaCraft ink, which I heat set. I added a Claudia Rose stamp "It's the little things" in Black (one of my all-time fave stamps) and a Rubber Poet leaf sprig in Forest Green.

The last thing i did was make a little label to identify. Now they are winging their way through the mailstream to Carol. Thanks for the creative challenge!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Valentine Ornament Swap

ALL of the valentine Ornaments for the swap I am hosting through my creative swaps blog are in my hands and uploaded for your viewing pleasure to this companion blog of mine - go see!

To the right is one of Carol Murphy's valentine Ornaments created for the swap with her own Altered by Design images. This is a close-up of the ornament she created especially for me as hostess; you can click on the scan for even more detail.

I do hope you enjoy - I have some very talented & creative participants!

Alpha Stamps ABC Pencil Box






Created as part of my job as a design Team Member for Alpha Stamps (smile). If you click on this photo you will be brought to my flickr photo sharing account where you'll find lots more views! Below, I'll share how I created it with you .
AlphaS.ABC-box03, originally uploaded by creativelenna.


This started as a plain, stained wooden box. The owner of Alpha Stamps, Leslie Elledge recently published a number of new ABC/School related collage sheets and also new clear Pen & Ink stamps that I wanted to use together on a design team project. This was on my mind as I was unpacking yet another box in my studio from our move last fall. The good thing about finally trudging through the unpacking of what my husband Steven lovingly calls "most of what we moved" is that I am finding cool things I have not seen in months or in some cases even a year & a half (we moved twice!). In a large carton with canvas boards and pads of paper and my label maker, was this wooden box -a perfect match for my idea! This box did not need any prep first, to be able to work on it. *If you start with a rough wooden box or container, I would sand it and stain it (if you wish) first.


To start, I looked through the new collage sheets and chose images I wanted to work with that would fit on either the sides, top, or inside lid of my box. I cut out more than I would need and played with their placement by trying them out on different places. I decided to begin with the inside lid that you see above. I chose an image from the chalkboard sheet (Y & Z) and one from ABC Books #3 (A,B, C,D and ABC).




I thought about HOW I wanted to attach these paper images to the wooden box and decided upon Yes Glue. From my experience Yes Glue is one of the best glues to use when you really do not want the paper you are gluing to buckle, and especially if you will be covering the paper later with some type of medium. I trimmed the images to fit the inside lid space and used an old credit card to spread the Yes glue on the back of my images (it's almost like a paste). Once in place on the box I used my bone folder to make sure the paper images adhered to the wooden lid securely and I let the images dry.

I decided they needed some 'framing' -- so I reached for some ribbons from Alpha Stamps:
a 3/8" dark brown velvet ribbon that I ran vertically on either side of ABC and then a 3/16" reversible tan/rust ribbon I found in Christmas Set #1 that I used around all the edges of the lid and images. To attach the ribbon I used a thin line of tacky glue on the back, cut to size, and then pressed the ribbons into place. See the photo above.

Next, I turned my attention to the outside of the box. The large main image on the top of the box is from the new Alpha Stamp collage sheet Animals in School. I really wanted to use this entire image along with the "S" text; I think it is so cool! By doing a little trimming it fit nicely. I went ahead and made decisions about additional images from this sheet, the Chalkboard sheet and the ABC Books #3 sheet. I trimmed the images to fit the available space on all sides of the box and once again used Yes glue and a little burnishing with my bone folder to make sure all of the images were secure. One of my favorite images is from the Animals in School sheet, called "kittens in school" . . . probably because at this time we have 2 kittens at home. I think that's what makes this image is so endearing to me! I will use it to show my next step in creating this box. (see the back of the box below)



I wanted to 'age' the images (and the box) a little bit so I used brown acrylic paint and a rag. By rubbing a bit of paint on the edges of the paper collage images & also some areas of the box and then before it dried, rubbing some of the paint away with a damp rag -this gave the box the 'old' look I wanted. Since I liked it, I went ahead and did this process all over the box!

Next came rubber stamping. To combine both collage and stamping for this project, in line with my theme, I grabbed the new pen & ink set of clear stamps from Alpha Stamps to use. Because these stamps are perfectly clear, when I mount them temporarily on clear acrylic blocks, I can see right through to whatever I am stamping, a blessing when working on a project like this. I used a black StazOn Ink Pad which is a Permanent ink and just right for a wooden box! You will want to practic first at least on paper. Permanent inks are different - tackier (stickier). Practice first and make sure you have a re-inker handy to refresh your ink pad as needed. With unmounted clear stamps such as the pen & ink set I worked with here, you have the option of stamping without the acrylic block and bending the stamp around the corner or re-stamping (clear=easy to line up again) if you did not get the entire image the first time. Check out the corner below by clicking on the photo. Not my best 'around the corner' stamping, but fun!

The final thing I did was use my heat gun all over the box to make sure all the ink was dry. Then I used a self-leveling matte medium by Golden for the nice sheen you see all over.





I hope you enjoyed learning about my process & you try this project out yourself! If you would like to view a slideshow of all the different sides of this box, go to this page and chose 'view as slideshow'. p.s. my husband says he's stealing this box for his art pencils!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Cyber Fyber Trade

I received my ATC and postcard trades today from Susan Lenz for the Cyber Fyber exhibit - how exciting! Hopefully, she has received mine too. If you missed what I created to trade with her, either scroll down a few posts or use this link to go right to the pictures.

Cyber Fyber: "The brainchild of Susan Lenz, this exhibit will focus on the supportive, global community of fiber artists with whom Susan regularly shares new techniques, contemporary approaches to textiles, and finished work by Internet websites and blogs."

The idea is that Susan has created 100's of fiber ATCs and postcards that any artist at least 18 years of age with an active blog or profile can trade with her, for their own creations: fiber ATCs or postcards (limit of 1 each), via the Cyber Fyber blog. The official opening of the trading is on February 2nd, 2008 - so go check it out! All traded fiber pieces will be exhibited in Columbia, South Carolina, USA from January 8th through 20th, 2009.

Thank you Susan, I love your work! Below is a close-up of Susan's postcard. You can read how she created it, here.

Note! Susan wrote to me on Feb. 4th:

"Hi! Thanks so much! Your package arrived on Saturday and is "officially" the *first item received* other than the prearranged trade! I am over the moon about it and my husband Steve is utterly stunned. I am planning to update the CYBER FYBER journal later today with a picture of this great event! Thank you so much...oh, I've already edited postcard 81 with the additional link! Thanks! Susan"

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