Sunday, November 8, 2015

Sharing Handmade Kindness Challenge

-- Week One --
Sharing Handmade Kindness: Family and Friends

I have joined Jennifer McGuire's "Sharing Handmade Kindness" Challenge
for the month of November. 

I watched a video by Shannon Green called Journaling by 5's that I used to make this ATC and Roladex card, which was made for all my ATC club friends.
I did not necessarily follow Shannon Green's timeline, however, these came together quick as I applied her formula to make the atc (November ATC club theme: Architecture).
a. Color background = I used watercolor paint by Art Quest and a wide water brush.
b. Collaged recycled bits of paper = I tore up bits of security paper envelopes. I love the patterns and added them to the dried rolodex cards with gel medium. After it was dry I sanded the rough texture of the gel medium to make it smooth.
c. Use stamps or stencils = actually  I sponged through a plastic number mask and stamped the flowers and leaves in red and black stazon inks.
d. Then add images and/or words = I stamped the cottage, the extra flower and the sentiment, colored them, cut them out, and glued them down to the cards. I added the address label to the rolodex card and the sentiment strip to the atc.
e. Then use  a pen/pencil and other things to enhance the card. In this case, I used a black colored pencil to trace around the address label and sentiment, added the tabs, washi tape, and the gem.
-- Week Two --
Sharing Handmade Kindness Theme: Community
I broke out the small gelli plate for the very first time
and made a pocket letter for an exchange.
Here's one of the cards =
I also made two thank you cards, one for my pastor and one for a friend who has donated a copy of his published cemetery book to our local genealogical library center.
I made it based on this design, click here.
I did not have the kit mentioned in the video, however, I cased a similar copy with eight accordion folded panels by cutting down 2 sheets of 8.5" x 11" pieces
of cardstock in half lengthwise
and taping three of the halves together to make one long strip of paper.
Next, I scored it about every 2.5" to 3" for every panel until I had 8 panels.
Whatever was left over was cut off.
I then stamped four different background stamps on 2 panels each and glued foam letters
to the center of each design until I spelled out the word T-H-A-N-K-S.
On the back of the end panel, I stamped a "thank you" in the center back
and signed it.
It looks nice standing up!
 I have to tell about our Pastor's elementary children. They made something handmade with their mother and handed small plates of it out this morning to people as they left church.
They were the yummiest chocolate chip cookies!
They were sharing handmade kindness today too with their community!
-- Week Three --
Sharing Handmade Kindness: Kids
This is what I made!
A pocket letter (I have one more to make) and several small hand games for the kids in my church. I gave the small tic-tac-toe games (found the game pieces at our local odd-ball salvage store called Bargain Factory. I think there is a link to it over on the side menu)
 to our church's candy lady for her yummy bag
 and the pocket letters will go as a card shower to two kids who are battling cancer.
I made the pocket letters like my rainy day puzzle,
except I left it in black and white so that the children
will have something to color if they feel up to it.
Having spent two weeks in the hospital myself a couple of summers ago,
even with TV, it's just plain boring, so
I can't even imagine spending a large part of my life there.
And just like an adult pocket letter, I have small things
appropriate for their age group inside each pocket.
If you are a crafter, consider joining us in making a card for the children
and/or their siblings and their parents. Jennifer McGuire has
posted the due date and rules on her blog post here.

And by the way, a niece shared this video with me today.
She's taking college classes and this is what she learned in her psychology class about 
the social pain of rejection from bullies.
It seemed appropriate to share it here.
She said she learned that the children's little saying
"Sticks and stones will break my bones, but names will never hurt me"
was false, because they both register in the same region of the
brain as pain
which is the body's way of saying that something is wrong and needs repair.
It reminded me of several Bible verses such these:
"Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones."
~ Proverbs 16:24
"A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones."
~ Proverbs 17:22
" Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness. . ." ~ Colossians 3:12
-- Week Four --
Sharing Handmade Kindness: With Strangers

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Two-thirds Way Thru 30-Day-Coloring Challenge

See my first ten days of colored projects during this 30-Day Coloring Challenge.
See my 2nd ten days of coloring projects.
Day 21:

 I was over at Stephanie Ackerman's blog last night,
catching up on all her latest news,
when I ran across a post with her directions
on how she watercolors using watercolor pencils and an aqua-brush, 
so knew that was the direction I was going next,
to color in a house,
a gingerbread house,  to be exact, by Stampin' Up.
The colored pencil practice was a good prelude to coloring in with watercolor pencils,
however, when it came time to actually get the Strathmore
watercolor paper wet, I had a hard time getting some of the pencil pigment
to dissolve and smooth out like a marker.
I was using a "light" hand, as per Stephanie's instructions,
 but had to re-color over the dried sections.
The sky finally puddled after the second coat,
but the clouds and the house still wouldn't,
so then I had to look at the pencils.
I keep all my watercolor and colored pencils (various brands of both)
 separated in school boxes, so. . .
when I tried to find them on the Fantasia Pencil company website,
there were no photos of individual pencils to compare them to, so I decided
they must be coloring pencils, not watercolor ones. =0(
So to finish off the scene, I added stickles to the roof and gumdrops
and glossy accents to the little gingerbread man's heart.
Day 22.
Tonight my son was in a car accident with a motorcycle
that totaled his car; he's at the hospital getting checked out as I type this.
When I tried to call my husband to let him know
about the accident, his boss answered my hubby's phone and said he had
fainted and medics and an ambulance was on the way.
So tonight I elected not to color, but take care of my guys.
I hope you understand.
Day 23:
Kathy's Lawn Fawn Christmas Card 
I decided to do another watercolor card, but in a different technique
with the watercolor pencils.
I got inspiration from this Art Impressions tri-fold card video.
I love the look of watercolor and
followed the directions from the video of measuring and marking the card,
however, I didn't have the Art Impression stamps to make it with, so used what I had.
I think if I make this card again, I would move the car down so it is not hiding the house
and move the evergreen tree up and to the left side of where the car is..
I felt a little out of my element as it involved moving the pigment
from a "palette" to the paper
with the waterbrush; I have more control with the above watercolor technique of scribbling
the watercolor pencil pigment directly on the paper and wetting it with the waterbrush to puddle it.
Day 24:
Well, I played with placement today after I visited Michaels.
I was looking for Tim Holtz's Distress Micro Glaze fixative, but they didn't carry it.
You wouldn't believe the amount of coloring books they were carrying. WOW!
Right in time for Christmas shopping!
I thought I had a tree stamp, but all I could find were evergreens, so
I ended up buying a little 8 piece Inkadinkado tree set, but am still not satisfied
with the placement on the left side of the card.
The perspective isn't quite right yet, but I'm tickled with the shadows,
esp. the one of the car.
Day 25:
This crazy bird ATC is dedicated to Judy Cantrell,
who not only sent me stamp-off's of Tim Holtz's Crazy birds,
but also suggested how to color them in with watercolor crayons.
Did you know the term "jayhawking" is said to have been invented
by Patrick Devlin, an Irishman, who had emigrated to the Kansas territories 
during the Border War between Kansas and Missouri?
I couldn't resist adding the green polka-dot tie and bowler hat to the bird
along with the google-eyes.
He even has a little shamrock (confetti) next to him.
I have a plastic paint palette somewhere, but couldn't lay my hand on it,
so grabbed a plastic package bubble to use instead. The crayon scribbled easily and dissolved quite readily into paint and it didn't require the effort to get it transferred to the
image as the watercolor pencil scribbles did from the paper. 
Day 26:
Wise Old Owl
This coloring challenge is a two-fer; I'm getting
 shopping bags of supplies that I moved out to my craft barn
put away before I get down to business coloring, so
yesterday I found two palettes of watercolor paint;
one was a generic kids brand and the other was an Pearlescent
USArtQuest Stargazers palette that I had purchased at a thrift store
for $3.00 which had never been used.
I took that water brush in hand and painted up this wise old owl --
first layer was the generic brown - squirt one drop from water brush into paint,
mixed it a little and lightly painted it on and heat set it with my heat gun,
then went back over it with a darker brush on the shadow areas.
The bow-tie, cap, & pencil were all colored in the Stargazer paint.
It's more opaque than the generic watercolor paint. Then I went back over the bow tie
with lime green gel pen polka-dots and google eyes and he was done!
Day 27 & Day 28:
Me bad.
I totally blew off the coloring challenge yesterday.
Got involved in genealogy and didn't want to leave it, so
tonight I made two atc's.
I wanted to stamp the Celtic Cross in black, but could not find the stamp,
so had to rely on a stamp-off cut out of a "Ka-Ka" card.
You don't have a "Ka-Ka" card stash, do you?
I do. I keep unfinished and ugly cards in a shoebox.
Never know what you can dig out or find a use for from time to time.
I water colored both of these atc's with a paint box and water pen.
Day 29:
I'm tired tonight.
We're almost done with this 30-day Coloring Challenge.
I had a list of things to get completed and
have some things almost accomplished like the cleaning of my craft barn. Woo hoo!
I've  also learned that I like coloring with coloring pencils
and watercoloring with a water pen!
So here's my atc for today!
Day 30:
I made an atc-size envie  from a Asian treat bag I've hung onto like forever as a template 
and had to wait for the seams and the shamrock die cut on it to dry.
I was trying a new glitter glue which I got at a dollar store that I don't think I'll get again.
Had trouble getting it to come out and when it did, it came out in a big glop,
ACK!, so had a mess to clean up.
Here's the envie and the template.
The front of the envelope is 2.5" x 3.5." Score along dotted lines then fold and glue. .
I appreciate my friends and your lurkers out there
for coming back to read my blog every day
and commenting. 
Also, kudos goes to Kathy Racoosin for hosting this 30-Day Coloring Challenge.
Thank you.

Monday, October 12, 2015

30-Day Coloring Challenge Continues

See my first ten days of colored projects during this 30-Day Coloring Challenge.
Day 11:
My friend, Peggy, brought a few of her Mary Engelbreit rubber stamps
 and made some stamp-offs for me after our
ATC club meeting today. I colored a few to meet my
coloring challenge for today.
Day 12:
When I got home last night, I realized I had no idea what colors
to use on these stamp-offs. I recognize Mary Engelbreit's art
for as much as her color combinations as well as what she illustrates.
So I pulled out several of the books she has illustrated from my personal library
(I have approximately 65 of her books)
and found the illustration above, however, for the one below,
I had to wing it.
Day 13:
Kathy's Sparkly Pegusus Birthday Card
I went out to the craft barn and dug in my "Ka-Ka" stash and
found some stamp-offs I forgot I had, so I got to work coloring them tonight.
They almost look like a flower garden. . .

But here is an up close photo so you can see how I colored Mary Engelbreit's flowers in.

The tip of my pointy finger is quite numb tonight! LOL!
 I practiced using light pressure vs. harder pressure on the coloring.
You can see that in the blue and pink flowers and the leaves.
I also blended colors -- leaves and flower centers.
And used a white pencil to smooth out the red pencil pigment.
It really worked like a blender pencil.
Now if only these flowers had dies to go with them, I'd be a super happy camper.


Day 14:
What color(s) make you happy?
Somebody sent me an email today about colors and
it reminded me of an old post I had forgotten about.
I joined this coloring challenge,
not to make cards as some are doing, but to practice coloring.
Later, I can put the elements to good use in projects.
The sun above is part of the leftovers from my August ATC making.
But I did color a card front I found in my stash yesterday.

This is an old Stampin' Up set of rubber stamped images.
I added a few details with my colored pencils like the clouds and the tree bark.
And then I went back to bits of this and that.
The above snowmen are from an old Stampin' Up set, too, I think.
The flowers above were intended as a bit of a background and
I also colored in a cute corner or two.
Wanna watch Mary Engelbreit color in a drawing? Click here.
Day 15:
I think both these images are from a friend's Penny Black rubber stamps. . .
I've been looking very carefully at how ME shades her figures. . .
Part of the challenge for myself this month
 is becoming confident in the use of color.
Day 16:
Learned a fellow 30-Day Coloring Challenge
friend's mother passed away Sunday.
So here's a card in memory of her mother!
Shepherd stamp is by Highlander Celtic Stamps,
 the sentiment is by Inkadinkado,
the sheep is a stamp-off from a friend. 
Day 17:
Colorblock Technique
Make three circles by tracing around something round with a pencil, pen or marker,
anywhere on the page.
Save these three circles for stamping two images and a sentiment &/or for stickers.
Then, using a straight-edge ruler,
draw lines in the rest of the space to make "blocks."
You may stamp in the blocks and color in.
Day 18:
Sorry folks, I was really tired,
been working on a couple of genealogical articles for one of my other blogs,
so I elected to go to bed
instead of staying up and coloring.
Day 19:
Kathy's Guesting on Power Poppy -- It's a Cool Christmas Card!
One of my nieces sent me some black and white doodled coloring pages,
one of which I colored tonight.
The artist is: Deborah Muller.
Did you know that blue, green, and lavender are calming colors?
And pink is an appetite suppressant?
Supposedly, if you want to lose weight, paint your kitchen walls a bright pink!
 Day 20:
I was going to use my watercolor pencils tonight,
but first I have to find my aqua (water) brush.
I'm still trying to organize my craft barn.
So. . . tonight, it's still coloring pencils on one of those coloring sheets
niece shared with me.
After I got done coloring, it seemed like it still needed something and
I remembered that Mary Engelbreit uses black so effectively to pop colors,
so I used a fine-tip sharpie marker to reink the lines
and a light grey pencil to add some shadows.
I believe adding both helped.
I am Thankful & Blessed For God is with me!  
See my last ten days of projects during this 30-Day Coloring Challenge.

Friday, September 25, 2015

My First 30-Day Color Challenge


Kathy Racoosin at The Daily Marker blog is about ready for another 30 Day Coloring Challenge and I think I'm going to join in since I did so well with my paper challenge, however, that means I'm gonna have to get crackin' cause I only have five days to make up a bunch of cards, one for each day of the challenge.
I don't have to do anything fancy, but since I need to practice my coloring skills, this challenge is right up my alley, so to speak!  I could even go out and get one of those new adult coloring books that's so popular right now, but why do that when I have the rubber stamps and ink to make my own coloring cards. Spending 10 minutes or so coloring everyday won't be too hard.
Most of what I saw at Kathy's blog from previous challenges were black and white images that she colored in. Some had backgrounds that looked like she had doodled lines reminiscent of zentangle.

Here's a video on how Kathy prepares for her challenge by organizing her supplies!

Day 1:
For Kathy's "Day One" card of the 30-day-Coloring-Challenge, click here. 
Good day for cleaning the craft barn and coloring!
This doodled digi came from Stephanie Ackerman which I colored and made into a card.
I definitely can tell I need a white gel pen!  
You can't see it, but I used a silver & tangerine gel pen to give it a little shine.
 And while I was at it, I made this color swatch ring for my coloring pencils.
Got the idea from Jennifer McGuire.
It was good to see what each pencil's color really was
 and I plan to use it for dark, medium, & light colors. 
(there is one brand I won't buy again, because it barely has any pigment).
Day 2:
Kathy's cards
I was inspired by Lindsay Weinrich's zentangle picture, however,
this is a combination of Mary Engelbreit and Stampin' Up rubber stamps
and my doodling, which I made into a card to color.
My mother was a ceramic teacher turned watercolor artist
and I remembered today as I was coloring about a painting technique
she taught me in ceramic class called crosshatching.
When you can't get a good covering of color,
go back over it in the opposite direction, which I did on the sky.
Today I worked some more on the colored pencil swatch strips
and discovered I had a white pencil, so that's the "stitches" on the black cardstock around the edge. Today was a good day for crock-pot cooking, so hubby had sloppy Joes for supper.
Day 3:
 [Today: Errand Day & Calling on Besties Day]
Dollar Tree had this cute care bear coloring book that hubby bought for me. . .
After explaining about the coloring challenge to our friends,
I went to work on one of the pages. . .
A reminder of good times!
Day 4:
Cards by Kathy 
Before Sunday School, Hubbin went to emergency room in excruciating pain;
yep, a kidney stone!
Day 5:
Dedicated to the memory of my friend, Linda!
Day 6:
Hubbin was released from the hospital today 
and immediately he made a beeline for his own bed!
As I've been coloring with my dry colored pencils,
I've been watching how I stroke the pencil line.
It's kinda like coloring with wax crayons, but lighter,
so if I want a smooth layer of color, I have to go over it at least three times.
With the bear tonight, first I put on a light blue, then hit the shadows with a darker blue
like I've seen in several copic marker videos that I've been watching on Youtube.
Then I went back over it in the opposite direction (cross-hatch) with the same light blue.
Since the bear is the focal point on this page, I went around it
with a halo of silver grey pencil to pop it from the page
and then used pencil strokes to radiate outwards from him.
Yesterdays bear got a doodled black fine line sharpie pen "scalloped" frame.
If you click on the photos, you can see the strokes better.

The Colored Pencil Artist's Drawing Bible. By Jane Strother. Chartwell, NY, 2012.
I dug this out of my stash of craft books to read.
It has techniques for both dry and wet coloring pencils.
Day 7:
Found this idea on one of my Pinterest boards.
Chrissie Grace called it "Kaleidoscope Painting" as she did it with acrylic paint
 (jar lid circles) & watercolors,
however, it reminded me of the colorblock background technique.
Guess that's why it interested me.
I traced around a juice can lid with a sharpie marker on a clipboard "table",
then colored it in with my colored pencils,
crosshatching about 3 coats of color on each space.
Since the sharpie lines looked faded, after all that,
I went back over the lines with the sharpie freehand.
I think this would make a great pocket letter
as it is on copyweight paper.
Day 8:
Next Sunday, Oct. 11 is
ATC Club meeting. Theme is : "Circus"
and rather than doubling up on projects, I thought I would include it
in the 30-Day Coloring Challenge. I usually make a dozen cards
and wanted to make the scrapbook paper
starburst technique that's all the rage right now,
but that doesn't include coloring, so. . .
And since I don't do dot placement well, I used a piece of sequin waste
as a stencil to draw in the dots, however, I discovered I
needed a really sharp coloring pencil to color round the tiny circles - *smile*
I found a couple of videos on Youtube for coloring with pencils --
one with Shari Carroll (flower)and the other Jackie Jones (pumpkins). 
Day 9:
Car quit. If I had only known that I would be sitting on a highway exit ramp,
Wal-Mart parking lot and at a garage for several hours this afternoon,
I would have taken my craft bag with me.
This Mary Engelbreit jester rubber stamp will be fussy cut
and added to Day 8's background as a circus clown.
Day 10:
Finished ATCs.
It's as circus-y as it's going to get.
See my 2nd ten days of coloring projects during this 30-Day Coloring Challenge.