Sunday, July 20, 2014

Creative Blog "Blog Hop"

Hi everyone!

So, last week I was challenged by my friend Jen Matott to participate in a creative blog, blog hop thingy. It's a little unique as far as blog hops go. Basically, I'm going to answer a series of questions and then link you up with some other creative types. 

By the way, you can find Jen's post HERE.

Here we go! 

I got into scrapbooking and paper crafting years ago. It's hard to pin point the exact year because I've always loved drawing and artsy things. I remember starting to collect craft items around the year 1999. Then, a friend of mine was attending card making classes at our local scrapbook store so, I joined her. I've been hooked ever since.

1) What am I working on?
I don't have a photo to share but, I am working on visual journaling pages using the August kit at Inside Out. I love creating these pages because it combines my love of creating with my need to record my daily thoughts. I love it! This kit has me using some beautiful colors and patterns. I'm also using some paint and masking and may even venture out with some techniques I don't normally try out. It will be very liberating.  (hint hint on the upcoming kits name!)

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?
I think the biggest difference in my work is WHAT I am recording. You won't find very many layouts that document events. My pages are exactly what I described in the first sentence. I am combining my love to create with my NEED to journal. Every page is recording some type of emotion or journey I'm in the midst of. Many might call this art journaling... I call it visual journaling. Because I'm taking icons, color and techniques to exude and symbolize the thoughts I'm recording on the page. 


3) Why do I create what I do?
I create visual journaling pages because it truly helps me be a better person. Every therapist seems to say the same thing... journal, journal, journal. I know it's good to write out thoughts, feelings and the like. It got to a point though, for me, that I just hated writing words on a page. So, at the recommendation of my therapist, I began to combine my love of scrapbooking with the written word. I love it! I love letting my emotion out through art work and also recording the words. I even put in a photo of myself that may exude that particular emotion or even to save how I looked during that period of my life. I do like to create other things like cards and I love to alter things like notebooks and frames and such. But, it always comes back to the visual journaling. Even in my "free" time, my pages are always emotion based.

4) How does your creating process work?
This may sound far fetched for some but, I begin with an emotion. What ever moves me emotionally and then, I go from there. Sometimes that emotion is sparked by a photo or a piece of paper. Sometimes I'm just feeling an emotion, like anger and I know I need to get it out so, I'll sift through my stash to see what I can find so I can let it out! It's always an emotion first. My journaling, depending on where I'm at, may come first or it may come last. Sometimes I'm not ready to put word to paper until I'm finished. The emotion can be so overwhelming or blurred and I can't think clearly until I'm done with my page. And, every once in awhile, there are no words recorded. I can look at a page I've created and know exactly what it was I was going through and needed to get out. 

And... when I'm not creating emotionally, it's usually a photo or a memory that gets me going. And it could be the materials too. I'll be inspired by a motif or pattern and it will bring up inspiration or a thought for me to record. 

And that's the end of the Q & A!

It was fun to share a little bit more about my process and dig through some of my layouts and projects to share with you.

This when I would tell you of a few creative types that were willing to hop with me and link you to their blogs. However, I couldn't find anyone that was willing and able. Everyone is so busy this time of year... I get it. BUT... that won't stop me from referring you to several friends that I ADORE. Actually, this gives me lots of freedom because I do have several artists in mind that I truly admire and I love to send anyone their way!

First up is my dear friend Stacey Michaud. I just love her clean and simple style. She designs with me at Inside Out and we've designed together on Scrapstreet too. Her layouts are so wonderfully composed and I admire how she tells her story on each page. Journaling is the base of all her pages and I just love that! 

Ronda Palazzari is another amazing artist I love to follow. I always like to say, "when I grow up...." I want to create like her! The way she uses masks and paints and mists and textures and colors.... dude. 

When it comes to card making, Kristina Werner has been a huge inspiration to me. I love her style. I love her techniques and her videos are some of my favorites. She's easy to listen to and I've noticed that many of my favorite cards, have been inspired by her classes and videos. 

And a few other favorites for you to go check out: Ashley Horton, Jennifer Haggerty, Latrice Murphy and Emily Spahn.

I know there are many others that have inspired me, too! And... if you would like to take part in this fun hop, just let me know in the comments below. It's really easy and I'll make sure to send people to your blog! 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

It happens all to often

It happens all to often.

I find a collection I adore! The colors. The motifs. The sentiments. They all speak to me

And then the inevitable happens. 

I run out. 

And I weep. 

And wail.

And whine.

Okay that may all be a little on the dramatic side but, in all seriousness, it does sadden my heart when I run out of that collection. Such was the case when I used my very last scrap of For the Record from Echo Park. The FIRST one.

Click on photo to be taken to the rest of the collection.

Do you remember it??? 

Well, imagine my GLEE when a friend was cleaning out her scrap stash and had not just a full collection kit but even some scraps! Yahooooooooooooo!!! 

Of course I got to creating and I decided to make a couple of cards. Because, naturally, cards use less product and, therefore, I can make it stretch as long as possible! Ha!

I love the use of black in this collection. The papers vary so much with the bold and subtle and then POW... some black. On my first card I wanted to play with that design element. I pulled a few papers that seemed calm in nature. The background pattern for the base layer did have a pop of red but, overall, it's a pretty calm design. The yellow and green help spice it up a bit but that black... vavavooms my card right up! All it needed was some bling and I feel like the combos I pulled from the collection create a really classy card. (And super simple to make!)

I love layering on my layouts so, why not on my cards too? So I just cut up a bunch of strips and trimmed the ends. This is a favorite thing to do with strips, for me, because it adds such a fun design touch. I used stickers for the sentiment and, again, that black just pops the card! By placing the black polka dot strip in the back, it really grounds the design. It also creates a visual triangle with the letter stickers and black button.

LOVE this collection so much!

And I still have a ton leftover!

For now.

Thanks for swinging by today!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Congrats Card

Hi everyone!

For all of you who are counting down the days until the weekend... hey! Happy Wednesday!

Several weeks ago, my Chicago friends held a going away crop for my benefit. It was so much fun! The company was delightful. The food was yummy. And even with a couple of beers in me, I got lots done! Ha!

I decided to make cards at this crop. Usually I'm working on my assignments and layouts but, every once in awhile I just like to take a break and create something fun.

Usually, I browse for sketches to get a jumping off point. As I create, the cards take on their own design and, by the time I'm done, they may or may not look like the sketch anymore. This card, however, definitely reflects the sketch I found - which you can find by clicking HERE.

I found some paper in my stash with star bursts that went well with the other stars on the card. I love the zig zag and that shade of green! I cut the star out with my friends Cricut. (I can't believe I went to the dark side with die cutting! But... you use what ya got!) 

I love this sketch because it is so simple! The wood veneers worked great and I think that the movement of the paper helped add some pizzazz. Also, the red button really pops against the woodgrain star. Such a fun card and it can be given to anyone

Have a great day and thanks, as always, for swinging by!