Friday, December 28, 2012

More Heart Ornaments

The holidays are a busy time of year and everything gets reorganized for a few weeks so most of my hobbies take a back seat for awhile. But I can still escape to my craft room and sit and sew for a couple minutes. I'm still working on the patchwork heart shape ornament idea and trying to perfect my construction process. Issues like having the curves curvy enough, and the point pointy enough, and just the right amount of stuffing to be rounded enough and completely hiding the stitched up turning opening and deciding if I should put it on the side or in the middle of the back. All those little details make a difference between good enough and really nice, IMHO.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Christmas Ornaments

No matter how busy I am at Christmas, the season inspires me to work on Christmas crafts of some type. Recently I have seen a few examples of embroidered fabric ornaments and decided to work on a few of my own design for Christmas. They aren't finished yet and won't be ready for this year but it gives me some little craft to work on while watching Christmas movies. And I may actually get one or two done before Christmas.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Christmas Card Art

It's that time of year again when I get a little inspired to do some seasonal arts and crafts. Some years are more inspiring than others and I may end up making many homemade decorations and gifts. This year I simply focused on creating art I could possible use for the front of a Christmas card. Because this has been a year of many paint and collage experiments I decided to create a Christmas themed collage and tried variations with fabric and paper.

After making and scanning these pieces I applied some Photoshop enhancements and additions and choose one of the map paper tree collage pictures to print as Christmas cards.

I had a few folded cards printed at Shutterfly and some flat cards printed at the cardstore. Now all I have to do is send them, ... and decorate the house, go Christmas shopping, bake cookies, decorate a tree, ... etc.


Happy Holidays!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Fabric Books and Flowers

I decided I wanted to make a fabric flower for the front of an altered book I am working on and I ended up making more than a dozen, just for practice. I plan to make more flowers because for one, I have a lot of fabric and for another, the more flowers I make the more ideas I get for using them. One of the first fabric flowers I made was a little red one that ended up on the cover of this little journal I completed last week.

The remaining fabric flowers and the additional ones I am destined to make look like this:

Today I just finished adding the innards to a funny looking little fabric book I embellished with random embroidery and homemade polymer clay buttons, but no fabric flowers!

I still have a couple more fabric books to finish and now I am starting on some Christmas themed projects. Expect to see something for Christmas next time. 


Friday, October 12, 2012

One Done, Four More To Go

You know those fabric books I started on in August. Well, I finally finished one this week. I ended up making five different covers and thought I should finish one into a booklet before got any further with the idea. I might not like how they turn out and I needed to figure out how I was going to sew in the signature, how many pages I could fit into one booklet, and how stiff the cover needs to be to look and feel nice in booklet form. 

I am considering other support material, like interfacing, to make the next covers I make stiffer but still flexible. I want the cover to be soft but not too floppy. I also think the fabric cover booklets need some kind of secure closure because the fabric is unstructured and is not as hard as a regular book cover. I am basically still experimenting with this craft idea and shown below is my first completed denim covered booklet.

I added some stitching embellishments on the front and back and a flap to use with the button closure. It makes a nice neat package all buttoned up.

There is one signature of 13 sheets (52 pages) of assorted papers sewn into the denim cover. When open, the cover is very flexible and can be folded back to write, draw or add whatever you want to the pages.

I like how this turned out and it gives me ideas for doing the next one. This one now goes on the pile of things to give to someone someday.


Sunday, September 30, 2012

Too Tired for 'Real' Art

I've been very busy the last couple weeks working on some home projects that leave me very tired at the end of the day. I haven't felt much like working on craft projects or art in my craft room but I still feel like creating something. That is when I sit at my computer or with my iPad and play with images to create a composition. These are a few of my recent digital play results:

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Postcards from Digital Art

I love creating my own stationary. There are so many ways you can design and have cards printed. I often use to make blank cards or cards for holidays. I also like the because they also have nice postcards. Recently I had some of my digital art printed on postcards to send to family and friends. They came out great! Can't wait to send them.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Butterfly Wings

There a finite number of butterfly wing shapes but a seemingly infinite number of Wing patterns. I have been going through my butterfly encyclopedias and sketching some of these patterns. I am working on some collages and I wanted to break down the wing patterns into the basic shapes and layouts. During this process I have come across the exceedingly simple one solid color wing to the outrageously complex mosaic patterns with spots. It's all just camouflage depending on what the butterfly needs to blend in. The ultimate blender is the transparent wing butterfly that is simply a window to whatever environment it is in. This process has helped me understand a little more about butterflies and evolution but mostly given me ideas for creating new butterflies inspired by the patterns of nature.

I started just sketching the basic shapes and markings patterns but also did a few in color.

I wasn't trying that hard but I liked how they turned out so I took the the half butterfly sketches and edited them in Photoshop Elements (PSE8) to create a few digital pictures.

Monday, August 20, 2012

A Little Digital Art

I have been busy with a few different things and I am still working on those denim booklets but I still find time to play on my iPad. There are so many great art apps and I particularly like ArtRage. It creates a great simulated painting textured surface and the blending of paint and colors seems very realistic. I like to just 'finger paint' and create interesting digital abstracts. Once I finish a digital painting I often edit it further in a photo app or use the picture in a collaging app.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Fabric Booklet Covers

Today I'm working on denim fabric covers for booklets made of painted scrap papers. The denim is from old jeans and I'm trying to get a nice frayed look. The pages will be randomly painted papers that are a byproduct of my other painting projects. Here are some pictures of the 'ingredients' that I am using.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Completed Collage

This collage took a little more time than some of my smaller projects. It was completed in multiple layers and a number of finish coats that took time to dry. This collage is on a 20 x 20 canvas panel. It includes a number of different papers, acrylic paint, and paint stained cotton yarn. I enjoyed making this collage and have already moved on to new projects. You'll see those later.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Collage Fun

I've discovered that making collages is an ongoing unexpected experiment. This is a photo synopsis of one I am currently working on:

Monday, July 16, 2012

Art in the Dark

What do you do when you have no power for a week? 
And it's 90 to 100 degrees outside...
Stay in the cool dark basement and play on an iPad or IPhone.

This is the photo I took of the derecho minutes before it took out power and hit our area. 

The photo does not do it justice. It looked like a wall of black clouds mowing down everything in it's path and that is pretty much what it did to our entire state. This was only 7:30 PM but it darkened the sky so much the street lights came on. Hundreds of thousands of people lost power all across the state, many for a week or more, including us.

But since my craft room and most of my artwork is done in the basement I had to find other ways to stay busy for awhile. I always have books to read or art apps to use on my iPad. Things are getting back to normal now and I am working on some new painting projects. I did recently finish a blue painted collage and have some other works in progress.

I also managed to do a little sewing and made these pencil cases.

And this cute little booklet.

Until later....
Stay Busy. I do!

Monday, July 2, 2012


I have been spending more time just painting little canvases (8x10) experimenting with color blends, techniques, and texture. I don't really have a theme or even a mood, just two colors that are inspiring me to play with them. These are some of my play creations: