Friday, October 14, 2016


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"!


Friday, September 16, 2016


Wow, it's September!  I can hardly believe it!  Seems time speeds up the older I get!

Linda is our host this month.  She came up with a fabulous video chock full of tons of inspiration!
If you haven't seen it yet, head on over to our main page here to see the video!  It is amazing!

Towards the end of the video there is a scene with hot air balloons and clouds, a woman singing on a swing, bubbles, etc.  There is a lot going on, just as there is in the rest of the video.  I decided to do my first ever journal spread using clouds, hot air balloons and the music lyric.  Here it is:

Pretty wild, huh?  Well the video is too!  This spread is dedicated to my family who fit the lyrics so well "God Only knows what I'd be without you", my husband of 34 years, my parents who have always been there to support me and my kids who I love with all my heart!

I began by brushing white gesso onto the blank art journal pages.  I then used my trusty All Night Media cloud stencil to stencil in clouds using a baby wipe along with Broken China Distress Paint. When dry, I used the white gesso again to stipple in fluffy "Clouds".  I love the way they turn out using this technique.  You can see the two pages side by side - with and without white gesso added.

I then added a bit of watered down Worn Lipstick Distress Pain to the clouds to add some color.

A friend of mine saw the video and commented to me that she loved the light rays in the clouds, so I decided to create some light rays emanating from the clouds.  I used Tims Sun Ray stencil and traced out some rays using some white glitter paper.  Then I cut them out and tucked them under some extra clouds that I cut out and popped up using foam tape at different parts of the journal spread.

Next I created some hot air balloons using an older Webster's Pages paper I found in my stash.  I cut out the balloons and added some bakers twine and hand cut banners to add some interest.

I also added a photo of my husband and me to one balloon and my parents and children to another.  I found a peach color pencil that I used to add some bits of color to the other balloons to make them

I adhered the balloons to the pages, tucking parts of the balloons underneath some clouds.  I also
just HAD to use the darling photo of my mom from last month's adventure again as she works perfectly sitting on a swing (another image in the video) suspended from a cloud.

There is a ton of sparkle in the video, so I cut different size circles from the white glitter paper and outlined the outside with Wendy Vecchi's Forget-Me-Not archival ink.  This made the "bubbles" more obvious.

I computer generated the words "God Only Knows What I'd Be Without You" on white paper, cut them apart and adhered them to scraps of peach card stock.  I wanted to make them "flow", so I staggered their placement over the two pages.  I finished the whole thing by stamping some swirls and music notes onto tissue paper, cutting them out and applying to the pages with matte medium  Love this technique!

Isn't this fun!  I can't wait to see all of your fabulous creations! There are so many possibilities, we know that you you will have lots of ideas!   Now watch the video (multiple times) and go for it!  Go wild!


Thursday, August 25, 2016

Guest Artist Piece - A Vintage Journey

Hello everyone!  I was so excited to be asked as a Guest Creative Guide by A Vintage Journey to be their Guest Artist for the month of August!  What an honor!  Amanda picked their theme for this month which is "Stencil It".  There are so many wonderful stencils on the market - this is a great theme!

It rarely happens, but I actually had an idea almost immediately.

I have always loved this quote by B  Line Designs and knew that I wanted to create a piece around it. I find it so inspiring!

I pulled out an old Cloud stencil by All Night Media and stenciled the clouds using DecoArt Fluid acrylics in Primary Cyan and Titan Buff mixed together and applied the color with a baby wipe to give it a softer look.  I began stenciling the clouds in, at first heavier towards the top of the piece and faded the color as I moved downwards.  Once the color was dry, I added a bit of Quinacridone Gold lightly over the top.

A small stiff brush was used to stipple in some white gesso to accent the clouds and make them look more puffy. (Forgot to take the photo before I laid out the birds)

The words were stenciled in randomly over the top of the sky using the Crafter's Workshop "Mini Art Is" stencil and Vintage Photo Distress Ink applied with a blending tool.

The final stencil used is Tim Holtz's Wildflower.  I think this is one of my favorites!  I once again used Vintage Photo Distress ink to stencil the wildflowers along the lower right side and bottom of the piece.

I stamped "A Bird is Never Afraid" by B Line Designs onto white tissue paper with Ranger Archival
ink and cut out the sentiment, cutting in into two parts.  Using matte medium, I adhered the sentiment to the middle of the piece, leaving enough room to add a die cut branch and a few flowers.  I laid the branch out and a flower so that I could see if there was enough room.

Using dark brown card stock, I die cut the birds from Tim's Sizzix Sizzlets Birds in Flight die and a branch from Memory Box's Woodland Branch die.  They were all adhered to the piece using matte medium.  I added some small die cut flowers cut from scrap paper and Tim Holtz's                  
Tattered Flower Garland die.  Finally,  it was fun to die cut some of Tim's Holtz's Stampers Anonymous Wildflowers from dark brown card stock and add them over the top of the stenciled wildflowers.  How cool is that they they coordinate so well!

I was going to altered a frame so that I could display this piece on my desk, however, I went to my local craft store and found this perfect Shabby Chic frame that I just love!  I didn't want to distract from the piece either, so I decided to leave the frame "as-is'.

I hope you have enjoyed seeing all the fabulous stencil projects by the wonderful ladies at "A Vintage Journey"  If you haven't done so yet, hop on over to their blog here to see them all!


Tuesday, August 16, 2016


Welcome everyone to August's art adventure - Sun, Moon and Stars!  I was so thrilled when our dear Yvonne came up with this theme!  I actually had an idea brewing in my head for quite awhile and I couldn't wait to put it together!  I have a wonderful photo of my mother when she was young (she is 87 this month) sitting on a bench that I couldn't wait to use.

Isn't she adorable?  As you can see, I turned my mother into a little angel sitting on a crescent moon among the stars.  There are several themes going on here - my love for my mother - and also a tribute to her challenges in life that she took on fearlessly. Well, maybe there was some fear there, however, she never let on....

Anyway, I wanted to create a night sky using one of my all time favorite Tim Holtz techniques from his Compendium of Curiosities III book.  I was fortunate to participate in Linda Ledbetter's CCIII Challenges last year and created several projects using this technique.

I started by dabbing some Blueprint Sketch, Faded Jeans and Picket Fence Distress inks onto my craft sheet.  Then I sprayed some water onto the paints on the sheet and swirled a manila tag through the paints.  I was so lucky as the first time was the charm and I got a wonderful night sky with this technique:

I then die cut Tim Holtz's Crescent Moon and Stars from a piece of card stock.  This was originally going to be just a trial run for a moon cut from cardboard to see if I liked the colors, etc., however, I ended up liking this original cut piece, so I die cut two more moons from  black cardstock to layer to the original piece for strength.  I apologize as I got so caught up in the fun of creating this tag that I forgot to take separate photos.  Hopefully, this close-up will give you an idea of the moon.

I began by using some Brilliance Moonlight White pigment ink to the base of the moon and then went over the top of it with Tim Holtz Squeezed Lemonade Distress ink.  I finished it by adding some areas of  Hickory Smoke to the moon.  I was trying to go for a more subdued "glowing" look to the moon.

As you can see, I offset one of the two layers of black card stock just a little to give the moon's face some definition.  I added a Gumdrop from Idea-ology to the top point of the moon along with an embellishment I found years ago at a retail show (I knew all those wonderful embellishments I purchased years ago but didn't know what to do with yet would come in handy!) to create a "hat" for my moon.  

I copied a photo of my mother onto card stock and cut her body out.  I then used Neo Color II crayons with a tiny bit of water to hand color her dress and socks pink, her hair brown and add just a little flesh color to her body.  I adhered some little wings to her back and an oversized little rose with a touch of blue to match the background to her dress. 

I set this aside to dry and then stamped Tim Holtz's "Love You to the Moon and Back" from his Life Quotes stamp set using black archival ink onto the tag.  It was pretty plain, so I used his Ranger white Picket Fence marker to add a bit of color to the letters to make them pop.

Then Mom was able to take her place on the crescent moon just below the words.  

To finish this piece,  I added three star brads to the tag and used another layer of black card stock to the entire piece.

I cut apart the quote from Tim's Idea-ology Small Talk stickers "with brave wings she flies" and backed each word with black card stock, finally adhering the words to the moon.  I also ran a bead of Stardust Stickles around the edge of the moon.

I always thought of my mother as one of the bravest people I knew.  She married my father, a young Navy dentist,  in 1956, had me in 1958 and then got on a ship to the Philippines with a toddler for the first of many adventures.  We moved around quite a bit and Mom always "bloomed where she was planted" and provided a wonderful life for my brother and me.  She and Dad even had the opportunity to travel quite a bit when we were stationed overseas and went to what I thought were such exotic places as Thailand, Hong Kong, India and Vietnam before the war.

So, here's to you, Mom!  Happy Birthday!  I love you to the moon and back!



Friday, August 5, 2016

Challenge to Myself - Graphic 45 Mon Amour Paper

The other day I was admiring my beautiful Graphic 45 Mon Amour paper and thinking about a wedding card I wanted to create for my niece's upcoming wedding.  Once I had the idea for the card (Theresa - if you are reading this, don't do any further!), I put it together and mulled over all the pieces that were left.  Normally I would just store it away, but this time I decided I would challenge myself to see how many cards I could create with the paper I had in this line.  I think I had about 6 or 7 sheets and I ended up with 15 cards!

I thought I would share these cards with you to show you that you can add stamps, embellishments, etc. and create a large variety.  I needed birthday, sympathy, wedding and general cards.  The first one I made was a pop up card:

Then some wedding cards:

These could be an anniversary cards too!
Sympathy cards

Birthday Cards

I have posted 12 cards here.  I actually made another three as well, but had to send them off before I had the chance to photograph them.  Fifteen cards from 6 or 7 sheets of paper!  I am pleased!

Thanks Graphic 45 for creating such beautiful paper!


Friday, July 15, 2016


Time is sure flying this Summer!  Can't believe we are already in the month of July!  The lovely Hels Sheridan has challenged us to a wonderful adventure - Book Pages and Blooms.  I wanted to incorporate Summer into this challenge, so here is what I came up with:

My piece - a 5 x 7" canvas - also includes one of my favorite authors, Jane Austen.  My favorite book and movie is Pride and Prejudice.  I used a wonderful stamp from B Line Designs entitled "Miranda" to represent Jane Austen.  I had to stamp her on paper first and enlarged her onto card stock so that she would be better proportioned in the scene I created.

I also stamped B Line Designs book and inkwell onto scrap card stock, colored and cut them both out.  I adhered some book text from the book Pride and Prejudice to the book and then glued the ink well over the text.

Now to finish the book.  I added the words "Jane Austen" to the letter below the book.  Then I adhered an embellishment I found in the bead department at my local craft store appropriately called "Pemberly" to the center of the book.

I prepared an art canvas by covering it with white gesso and letting it dry.  Then I used Broken China Distress Paint and a baby wipe to add blue color to the canvas, dabbing the color on.  Once dry, I used a stiff brush and white gesso to dab on "clouds".

I also added some Peeled Paint Distress Paint to the bottom of the canvas and at the base of the fence.
I stamped B Line Designs Manor fence twice onto tissue paper and adhered the image,- overlapping the two gates to create a wider one - using matte medium.

Now to add the pre stamped, cut and colored images to the canvas.

 I die cut a Grand Alder tree from memory Box using cream card stock and coloreds the tree with pencils and marker.  I cut the right edge away from the rest of the tree and added it to the right edge, over the fence.  My Jane Austen was then adhered over this piece.

The book was adhered to the left of my lady's image.  I stamped two swallows (B Line Designs Flying Friends Cube) onto scrap card stock, colored, cut out and adhered them to the left top of the canvas.

To finish, I added a piece of lace to the bottom of the canvas and then adhered a Beaded Strip                     border from B Line along the top of the lace.

I used Tim Holtz's Tiny Tattered Florals die to cut out some roses from a page from the Jane Austen book.  I spritzed some Spiced Marmalade Spray Stain onto a craft sheet along with water to tone down the color a bit.  The same was done with Peeled Paint Distress Spray Stain to color the leaves.  Once dry, I rolled the roses and placed the roses and leaves on either side of the canvas bottom.

Once again the finished canvas:

This was definitely a fun art adventure!  I can't wait to see what all of you create!