Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Deco Diatribe

This is my page in a housewarming deco for a Nness'r who moved recently (or - recently when it was started, anyway) It's about 4x4 and super cute - I love the artwork done for the covers! When I signed up I immediately came up with an idea to make a mini piece of art to hang on a wall and include the text "Home is where the Heart Is" with an emphasis on the "ART" part of heart ... So when it arrived here's what I did:

I made a tiny piece of abstract art on watercolor paper -gel pens this time -> hah! NOT Sharpies like ya thought!- and cut out a little frame ... The background image is actually a photo of the recip's own home, I snagged it from her blog ...hope that doesn't come off as really weird once she see's it!... the "string" on the art is from a wallhanging that was already on the wall there in the photo.

Okay, now theres two things I'm ticked about with this one (what?! only two?! harhar.): I wish I'd NOT added the white colored in areas to the lettering - at the time it seemed like ti needed something cause it just wasn't standing out - but afterwards it just looked ... messy. And while originally I thought I was balancing the text better by laying it out that way - NOW I know I should have left the "ART" part standalone on that section of wall above the artwork. Hold your finger over the word 'where' in the pic and you'll see what I mean. I HATE when the better ideas come AFTER the work is done - RAAAR! **And yes, I did consider reprinting a new BG picture and removing the art and redoing it, but it was 2AM and the glue was holding (for once, of course) and I was afraid of ruining the entire thing. So OH Well.

Monday, May 21, 2007

ATC Mega Swap @ Swap-Bot

Okay! Finally have my sends ready for the ATC Mega Swap over at Swap-Bot. My original idea for this project when I signed up was to do one single art piece and then cut it up into the 20 required ATCs, and send those out. Kinda like a "One Part of a Whole" puzzle type thing ... Anyway to keep it more manageable, I ended up doing 2 seperate pieces that were 17.5" by 5" - which got me 10 cards on each piece. I kept it simple by doing my usual Sharpie Abstract background, but did one in my favorite Black, Red & White "fill-in" theme and the other I just randomly colored in with metallic markers in a green, purple and blue palette. And here's how it progressed:

I randomly drew lines in black Sharpie marker, bisecting and looping and dividing until I was satisfied with the overall layout and individual sections. Did the same for second piece.

Step 2
Then I started inking in my spaces, adding little designs - stripes and lines, bubbles, dots, squiggles, hearts and stars - my usual arsenal of random abstractyness. I just go by a mantra of "fill the space" when I do these - it's seriously the quickest and easiest method I know of creating original, fun looking art - and no "talent" required! I usually prefer to leave some whitespace, especially in this particular color scheme. Here are the stages of this process:

I then repeated the process for the second piece, only without the added design elements - I simply filled those spaces in with solid colors to give it a sort of stained glass effect. I also had to re-ink the black border lines on that piece, as the metallic markers dulled the ink whenever I strayed outside the margins. Which was often. Sadly, I didn't continue my photo documentation past the early stages on that one and have no finished piece to show (Roops!)

Last step was cutting them into the 20 individual cards, attaching a backplate to each with the swap name and the number of the piece as it corresponded to the original it came from (1-A1, 2-E2, etc ...) then getting them into their envelopes, addressed & stamped and ready to roll!

I added images of the full size pieces to my Flick'r page: 1 (red&black) 2 (metallic), with an approximate breakdown of which individual card came from what section* (was kinda hard to get those note boxes to just the right size, plus I'd already sealed up the cards by then and couldn't doublecheck the actual card "contents") , so my partners can have a look at where their own card started out ... though the stained glass piece is a bit sad looking since I didn't photo it as a finished piece before I cut them (what can I say?! - kids are set to get outta school this week and I been a busy mama with all the end-of-year activities and running around and stuff. I was lucky just to get the ARTWORK done!)

Anyhow - that's it ... Just thought ya might like to see what went into creating my ATC Mega Swap submissions ... and I hope you like'em, those of you who got one!

Happy swapping!
~ gem ~

eta: Oh yeah, 2 things ... Number 1 - the PINK envelope in the mix there is a "WINNER" that I randomly chose from my partnerlist, they will get a new, personal piece of artwork made by me once they email me with their theme and choice (ATC, 4x6, 4x4 or deco) ... AND secondly ... I have steadily been recieving my ATCs from this swap, but as I said from the start - I'm holding off opening them until I either get all 20 sends, or a week or so after the swap date passes. No kidding!

*FYI- since I am no longer on Flickr, those links are dead

Friday, May 4, 2007

Journal Style Letter

So, I'm in this swap at Nervousness right now and one of the items we're to send our partner is a personal letter in journal style. I don't really like to write so I kinda agonized over this and waited til the last minute to finish it, but here it is:

The paper is handpainted with my standard BG technique (see previous posting) and then collaged just a bit with some magazine and computer printed images, plus some vinyl stickers - lines were added with an acrylic paint wash. The writing was done in Sharpie (after many attempts with PITT pens, Flairs, ZIGs) - the Sharpie just let me work alot faster, and it didn't turn out TOO bad, even with my horrible hodgepodge mess of handwriting (I've always envied those journal'ers who had font-perfect writing!) Accents were added with my new favorite! White Gel Pen - and I colored in some of the letters (which I wasn't crazy about afterwards, but -eh- I can nitpick anything I've made to death so may as well just stop now). Anyway it's done, it's true to what I was feeling when I wrote it, and hopefully will speak to the recipient in some way.

Now I gotta jet - summertime is upon us and the end of the school year is SO busy I can barely keep up ... just gotta tough it out a couple more weeks then sweeet sweeet summer ... ahhhh. Love it!

~ gem ~