Friday, January 20, 2017

EXCITING NEWS!

Exciting news!  I am thrilled and honored to be named to the 2017 Creative Impressions Design Team with my dear friend,  Cheryl Grigsby!

Creative Impressions is an amazing ribbon and embellishment company owned by the fabulous Janet Ramsos since 2002.  You won't find better customer service anywhere!

To find out more about Creative Impressions' wonderful products, please visit their website at www.creativeimpressions.com for more information.

Susan

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

JANUARY ART ADVENTURE - "BABY IT'S COLD OUTSIDE!"

Happy Winter everyone!  I know that a lot of you are not happy with this cold snap we have had along with the snow here in the U.S.  How has the weather been in the U.K.?  I was one of those moaning about it recently, however, I decided to turn things around and think of some positive aspects of Winter and especially snow.  One of my very favorite things to do when I was young was to go outside and catch snowflakes.  So, in honor of this winter fun, here is my project:



I decided to create a fat tag using one of my all time favorite B Line Designs stamps,  Dream Catcher.                          The stamp has a background, however, I  decided to cut her away from the background after coloring her with Prisma Color pencils and paint my own sky instead.



I incorporated one of my favorite techniques,  Paint Marbling.  If you don't know how to do this technique, you can find it on Page 43 of Tim Holtz's Compendium of Curiosities Volume III book.

I used four colors of Distress Paint,  Blueprint Sketch, Stormy Sky, Weathered Wood and Picket Fence and added a bit of each color to a craft sheet.  Then I spritzed the whole thing with water and ran my tag through the paint, swirling it as I went.  I dried it with a heat tool and then ran it through the paint again.  Love the way this turned out!


Since I'm from Colorado, I wanted to add some evergreen trees to the background behind my girl.  I used a Thinlits evergreen border die by Tim Holtz Alterations for Sizzix.  I die cut the border twice, once in a dark green and the second one in a lighter green.  Then I adhered the two together, slightly off-setting them to add dimension.



Next I added some gesso to the edges of the trees to look like snow.



Of course I needed a mound of snow for the little girl to stand on.  I took a scrap of white card stock and cut it in a curved fashion, then cut the edges to fit the tag.  I adhered my snow mound to the tag using foam tape.



I stamped just the snow mound from the Dream Catcher stamp, cut it out and adhered it to my larger snow mound cut from scrap card stock.  Foam tape was adhered to the upper part of the girl for dimension. I left the lower part of her legs free and used matte medium to adhere her boots and pantaloons to the snow mound.


At this point she needs some snowflakes to catch.  I die cut some small snowflakes from Cheery Lynn's Snowflake die  using white glitter card stock.  I then adhered the snowflakes randomly onto the tag.  At the same time, I created a loop and bow using one of my favorite ribbons from Creative Impressions, the white glitter ribbon.



I used gesso to add some snow texture around the edges of both of my snow mounds and sprinkled some Clear Rock Candy Distress Glitter over the top while it was still wet.  To finish the piece,  I added a slightly larger snowflake to the snow mound for interest as well as a purple felt Snowflake from Creative Impressions and a die cut snowflake over the top.  Here is a close up of the finished piece.


 And once again here is the entire piece.  Note that I created a black card stock mat for the back of the tag.


I hope you have enjoyed my Winter tag and that it inspires you to go out and catch a few snowflakes of your own!

We are all enjoying your projects for "Baby, It's Cold Outside!" here at Creative Carte Blanche!  Hope to see lots more!

Susan

Friday, December 9, 2016

DECEMBER CREATIVE CARTE BLANCHE - SONG LYRICS

I know, I know, I say this all the time as the months fly by, but I still can't believe the month of December has arrived!  It seems to have snuck up on me this again, but now I am getting into the Christmas spirit!  The lovely Cheryl has challenged us to create an art piece using song lyrics.  I decided to use Christmas song lyrics to create my project.  This journal spread is based one of my favorite Christmas songs "Colorado Snow" by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band.  You can listen to the song here.







This was a bit of a scary project for me as I have never attempted a project such as this one in the past.  I decided to give it a whirl and I am pretty happy with the results.

I began by using two recycled pages from an old desk top calendar  I had from several years ago.  I just knew I wanted to recycle those pretty pictures!  The biggest challenge was how to unify two different pictures!




Sorry about the paper in the background!  That's what I get for working on two projects at a time!

Anyway, I pulled out my DecoArt fluid acrylic paints and got to work.  As  you can see above, I started with unifying the sky.  (Forgot to take a picture of them beforehand).  I used a mix of Primary Cyan, Titanium and Paynes Grey to create a bit of an overcast sky.  The sky is usually bright blue here, even in the Winter!

Once the sky was finished I had to unify the mountains in the background.  I turned to Phthalo Green-Yellow, Paynes Grey  and Primary Cyan for the Mountain.  I mixed them and went to work by using a small paintbrush and lightly dabbing the color over the mountains (the fog too).  Here is the result.



I then added some trees from a third photo to try to unify the bottom portion of the spread.
Now it was starting to come together!

I knew I wanted a Christmas scene at the bottom of the spread, so I turned to one of my all time favorite stamps by Embossing Arts - Cowboy Bringing Home the Christmas Tree.  I stamped the image using Range Archival ink in Library Green on scrap card stock.  Then I stamped some trees by Creative Impressions and Stampa Rosa, also in Library Green.  I colored the cowboy image using watered down Denim Blue and Gathered Twigs Distress Inks and a few markers by Tomboy.  I carefully cut around the tops of all the images and adhered them to the journal spread.









Now for the song lyrics.  I chose to use some of the words from the chorus "The closest thing to Heaven on this planet anywhere, is a quiet Christmas morning in the Colorado snow.".  The whole chorus includes the name of my home too, Boulder.  "All along the Rockies you can feel it in the air...From Telluride to Boulder down below....The closest thing to Heaven on this planet anywhere is a quiet Christmas morning in the Colorado snow."



Now I just needed a few snowflakes to finish of the scene.  I used a snowflake die from Cheery Lynn.



Now I have a journal page I can look at to remind me in the Summer (which I love too) why I can handle the cold here in Winter!  It is beautiful!

I know you all are busy this time of year, but we would love it if you could find some time to share your creation with us.  Remember, it doesn't have to be about Christmas - any song lyrics you love will do!

Happy Holidays
Susan

Friday, November 11, 2016

NOVEMBER ART ADVENTURE - "YOU'VE GOT ME IN STITCHES"

Here it is November already and we have a wonderful adventure brought to us by the lovely Annette Green who has asked us to create a project using fabric and/or stitching in some way.  Here is my project:


I wanted to create a keepsake that reminded me of my lovely maternal grandmother as she and I would sew or craft quite a bit whenever we were together.  She had an old Singer sewing machine I just loved to use.  We spent a lot of wonderful days together sewing stuffed frogs for the church bazaar, crocheting, etc.

I used Tim's doily and dress form dies for the main part of this project.  I cut the dress form out twice from brown card stock and glued the two pieces together for added strength.  I also cut one from Sticky Back Canvas and cut the top and the bottom off, adhering it to the card stock dress form.





The patterned paper I used for my base is an old "pattern" design sheet from Basic Gray.  The strips on the side are from Kaisercraft as well as the Bingo card and the "Cherished Memories " paper ephemera piece at the top.

I now decided to decorate the dress form.  I used a lovely photo of my grandmother that I cut to fit inside one of Tim Holtz's Idea-olgy Cameo Frames and adhered it inside.  I then got into my fabulous stash of ephemera from Creative Impressions and found some measuring tape twill along with a small safety pin, a Country Heart and some mini ball chain in silver.  I began by creating a necklace with the ball chain and connector and adhering this to the back of the dress form so that it wouldn't move around too much.



I then cut a length of measuring tape twill, folded it so that it would fit on the dress form's waist and used matte medium to glue it not only along my folds but also on the waist.  Then I positioned the          
with Grandma's photo over the top, hiding the folds.


The Basic Grey patterned paper and the Kaisercraft paper strips were adhered to a back panel.




I cut Tim's Sizziz Thinlits Doily die from cream card stock and added some Vintage Photo Distress ink to "age" the doily.

For the "sewing" part of this piece, I used a template from Paper Pizazz with different stitches on it to draw in straight stitches along the area where the two different papers were attached.  I then used some Creative Impressions Baker's Twine to stick along the "seams" by hand.  I really like the way this turned out!



I added another burgundy layer of card stock and one last black layer to finish the base.

Next I added the dress form to the piece and finished decorating it with some paper flowers and Creative Impressions safety pin and Country Heart.


Now I'm thinking this may have happened to you at one point as well.  Are you lucky enough to have a friend whose "stash" is as big as yours?"  Well, I made a trip to my friend Michelle's house to see what she had.  Lo and behold she not only had that perfect paper for creating the side strips, but she also had this fabulous wooden disk with a hole in the center, paper to punch to made it look like the side of a thread spool and a bingo paper ephemera piece from Kaisercraft that were perfect!  Yay!

I also added some more paper flowers to the the upper portion of the piece as well along with some lovely lace along the top and bottom.





Now to finish it...I decided to use one of Tim's Idea-ology Display Hangars for displaying the large tag.  Michelle also had this perfect oval paper ephemera piece that expressed the perfect sentiment.  She had the idea to put it in the center of the hangar.  Love it!

I added a beautiful bow made from Creative Impressions Crepe Ribbon and I was done.  It's not hanging in my studio as a wonderful reminder of happy times with Grandma!

Now let's see what you come up with for "You've got me in Stitches"  This is a broad topic, so I know you will easily have a great project to share with us.  Make sure to return to our main site at
www.creativecartebanche.com and use the Inlinkz upload to show us your wonderful work!  Can't wait to see it!

Susan

Friday, October 14, 2016

OCTOBER CREATIVE CARTE BLANCHE ADVENTURE - WITCHY WOMAN

I absolutely can't believe the month of October has arrived along with another Creative Carte Blanche Art Adventure!  This month's theme is "Witchy Woman".  Like Cheryl before me, I took a bit of creative license with my project.  When I thought it was just a Halloween theme, I had an idea in my head about a little 3D scene I wanted to create using a old picture of my father.  However, as the project worked itself out, a little witch flying in the night sky was just the ticket to finish off the piece.


I used one of Tim Holtz's vignette boxes for the scene.  I used some Espresso and Hickory Smoke Distress paint to finish off the edges and dry-brushed a bit of Hickory Smoke over the box.



I started with a photo of my dad sitting on the porch with a dog when he was young.  I copied the photo onto a piece of card stock and cut away the back of the house and around the sides and top of Dad's body as well as the front screen door, saving the back of the house for later.   Then I used a bone folder and ruler to score along the photo to create a ledge for my porch scene.




I added some color to the door using Distress inks and went around the edges with Vintage Photo Distress ink.  I didn't want to add a lot of color to the house as I wanted it to show for what it was - a simple house.  I added a bit of color to Dad's clothes and body,  the dog and some flowers at the base of the house from a second photo, even though they didn't show in the finished piece.

I took the part of the photo that was cut away and adhered it to the back of the box, knowing that the the cut-out part wouldn't show behind the screen door.


I folded the porch photo on the previously scored line and cut it to fit inside the box.  I also attached the partial photo of the side of the house midway between the back of the box and the front porch.  To secure it better, I created a pop-up box to place behind the house siding and adhered it to the back of the box and the photo.  I did the same with the screen door to secure it better.  The porch didn't fill up the area to the back bottom of the box, so I created another  pop-up box to adhere to the bottom of the vignette box back, giving me room to place the pumpkins, straw and leaves.  Then I used some doll house size pumpkins along with some acorns I found on one of my walks, straw and leaves I punched out of pattern paper and adhered them all to the scene.


Even though I have touches of color in my box, I wanted a bit more, so I added a silk leaf along with some more acorns and a pumpkin to the top of the box.



Now for the finishing touches.  I stamped some Trick-or-Treating children onto a piece of scrap card stock, colored two of them and cut them out, adhering them to the front screen door.  I also spelled out the word "D-A-D" with some small wooden blocks and adhered them.  I then punched out a large circle from scrap card stock and added Brilliance Moonlight White pigment ink and some Hickory Smoke Distress ink to create my "moon".  I folded the base of the circle and adhered the bottom section which was folded back to the top of the box.  A punched witch was then added to the moon.



Here are some close-ups:



Finally, I adhered more small wooden blocks in front of the moon and on top of the box to spell out the word "H-A-L-L-O-W-E-E-N".


Hope you like my October art adventure piece.  It was so much fun to create and, as always, I have wonderful memories of my family to look at incoprorated with my art.

I hope you will upload all your creations for this Creative Carte Blanche theme.  Head on over to the main site here and you will find the link to upload your project photos at the bottom of the first post.  Have fun and Happy Halloween.  Let's see those "Witchy Women"!

Susan