Friday, June 29, 2007

Mermen, Merfolk!

Recently I was in the process of making a little Mermen themed deco for an Nness friend when I came across a want in the Deco PIF (Pay-It-Forward) thread for a Merfolk themed deco ... since I was already doing one, I thought - why not another?
The original idea came about when I was making some new handpainted background papers one day and really liked the aqua-y blue green pages I turned out, they seemed just right for a mystical sea creature project ... didn't wanna make yet another Mermaid themed booklet, so I decided to make a Mermen one instead!

Mermen deco ~ handpainted cover papers with metallic watercolor paints, collaged merman -vintage cartoon image of a king or some royal type figure, with real life fish bodyparts from a magazine, coating of hologram glitter paint for shimmery scales effect- Art Deco style letter stickers for cover text

Merfolk deco ~ this scan is of the interior cover page and front of artists blank pages ... Same metallic watercolor painted background papers for the covers, same method of collage for the "merfolk" as above ... I added divider pages made from discarded map papers (tried to go with ones that had mostly water area showing) in between the blank artists pages, and added a different merfolk figure onto each of the map pages ... The front "Artists Welcome" map page I made by typing text onto a transparency sheet, overlaid on a scrap of the cover paper and attached with small brads, then that whole piece was glued down. In my desire to add an artistic element to the dedication page inside the front cover, I glued down small transparent & iridescent star confetti all around the edge - I used jewel glue and weighted it down to press flat & adhere while it dried, but I noticed after scanning that a couple had popped off anyway. I reattached them and covered the whole page with acrylic sealer (which made the gel pen bleed some, dargghh.) and I don't know if that will be enough to keep them on but lets XfingersX that it does! would really be disappointed to find out it arrived all ... de-starred.

I liked that they were both a bit different take on the typical "mermaid" theme, and I hope the recips like the decos they got from me and they come home filled with really fun, unique bits of art ... I think this is going to be it for me for deco making just now ... I have a few more to work some pages in as soon as they come in, and a BUNCH that need to be sent back off into the world to be worked in by others as soon as I figure out who I should send them to ... but me, myself - I'm really deco'd out these days and think I'm gonna be doing more ATCs and getting into that sewing machine ...

~ gem ~

Monday, June 18, 2007

Art Journal Letter

So, sadly - one of the players in the Artist's Bakers Dozen swap at Nervousness got flaked on - I offered to send a new package on to her and that entailed creating another personal letter in art journal style. Here is the finished product and the original blank BG I made (I posted the background layout on Flick'r prior to adding my text ...)

- be sure to view full size -

Basic watercolor wash on sketchpad paper ... stamped on with some random foam and rubber stamp flower images (this was a fairly old BG paper I dug out of my stash, I wanted a lightweight paper as opposed to my usual textured watercolor paper) then I added some images - magazine clipping and vintage bird drawings printed on the computer, with a little acrylic paint wash added around those - the textlines and accent outlines in white gel pen, and finally my journal text in fineline Sharpie. I took my content cue from the imagery I'd created, and related a quick little (multi)bird story from my own life. I tend to be short and sweet with any of my journalish projects, so even though this was technically supposed to be a full-on "letter" (and I could have rambled on a few more bird things but ran outta writing space on this one) - overall I'm calling it a success.

Oh and I haven't gotten a chance to sit'n sew yet ... soon, I hope!

~ gem ~

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Da NaNa NaNaNa, Ya Say It's Ya Birthdayyyy!

... well it's MY birthday too, yeah!

I'm trying to get this typed and posted before midnight so it get's timestamped while it's still actually my birthday, but my hand is swelling up & hurting so we'll see ... (dogbite - not fun) ... Anyway!

I participated in a couple swaps at Swap-Bot recently and wanted to show the results; one was a Gemini Birthday swap which yessss even though my partners ALL sent my packages early, I did wait until today to open them. I have Extreme Willpower! Here they are, in no particular order:

(note: Apr 2014 - in going thru all the posts trying to update old broken image links - I have been unable to find copies of the pics for these swaps! Bummer ...)

All were excellent, thoughtful, well put-together packages and my swap partners really took care to read my profile and sent things perfectly suited to me - I loved EVERYTHING! So big thanks to them for making today a super special day :) I'll be trying to make the rating rounds tomorrow, at least before the weekend's over ...

Next stop: ATC MEGA SWAP! It's a week past the mailing deadline and I ended up with 18 out of 20 cards ... though at least one person sent 2 cards, so we'll see if those missing ones show up later. But for now ...


And here they are, at last! Really nice looking set of cards altogether, don't you think? I stacked the envelopes largest to smallest, then opened them and layed them out in that order - kinda funny how batches of similar hues/colors ended up together.

Fun swap, I'd totally do that one again sometime. And finally - a completely unexpected surprise from my family - as usual I requested "no gift" and as usual they ignored me ... I hope I didn't ruin their excitement or fun in giving it, beacause I REALLY DO LOVE IT! but I realllly didn't want them $pending the money on me like that. But they did and there ya go. So anyway, here it is:

** again - had to dig thru my pic files to replace the originals and this was the earliest one I could find -
it didn't actually come with the stickers on it, that's just something I did later **

I KNOW, RIGHT!? It's great, I've casually mentioned wishing I had a sewing machine now and then (gee, they really DO listen, whatta ya know?) but I certainly didn't expect one. It's not the biggest fanciest thing ever but it looks pretty darn cool to me! I can't wait to get started using it, but since I'm a total sewing novice it's gonna take some time before I'm posting any of the "Makings from the Machine", I'm sure. I can also pretty much guarantee a cutback in paperart stuff as soon as I learn how to work it, since I tend to get completely 1track for a time when it comes to new arenas / projects / etc ...

Bedtime now - I'm so tired and my hand hurts real bad. But otherwise it was a super duper birthday (even without cake or the song) and hopefully thats a sign for how this "new year" is gonna go ... which is what I'm doing right now! Going!

~ gem ~