Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Several ATCs and off to surgery.......

I have a couple of swaps left to complete over at Swap-Bot and finished them up in the past few days. I am having my second surgery on my right eye this afternoon and wanted to have them out of the way.
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I used a lot glitter on both of them, but it doesn't really show. These ATCs are to finish up the History of the Month's Names. The names simply stand for the numbers 9 and 10, which was their position on the early calendars. In the 9th month, November, the Romans celebrated a feast to Jupiter and in the 10 month (Roman numeral X) the Christians used the same date as the festival of the winter solstice, the 25th. It was an easy thing to make the Birthday of the Unconquered Sun, which wakes all nature from its winter sleep, into the Birthday of the Unconquered Son of God, who brought new life and hope to the world. December also had two names among the Angles and Saxons: "Wintermonath", and "Heligmonath", that is, "holy month", from the fact that Christmas falls in this month.

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This last ATC had to be collaged. My theme intertwines school and play, with a tiny clipboard at the top.

And now, I must get ready for eye surgery and will be back to chat later in the week!

UPDATE - Back home now and things went very well. Praises!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Night Visitors!

I recently got a Wildlife infrared camera because I am interested to know what prowls around our house at night. We live on a hill and have woods which come up fairly close behind our house. I've only had it for a few days, and have been learning how to use it and so I have lots of pictures of me triggering the flash, and a few of one of the dogs and the cat. But finally last night there were some real woodland creatures!

I realize the date is a month off, so I will be changing that! But it is fun to see the possum and the red fox lurking around close to our house as we were sleeping!

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Happy Thanksgiving to all of my American readers! It's a grey, chilly day here but that's all right with us. We are going to a very nice restaurant for dinner and I am looking forward to it! We made reservations with the idea that we would cancel if I was having problems with fatigue today but so far, I'm feeling OK, and that's very exciting for me. Our daughter Tabitha will join us and it should be a festive occasion.

One of the recent swaps I was in was for an ATC to be done in 15 minutes. It was fun and I had to be careful I didn't go over the time limit, because I was enjoying the process.

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The materials used include gel medium, Lumiere paint, distress ink, alcohol ink, rubber stamps, Gold Leaf pen, Sakura pens, glimmer mist, charcoal pencil and an old charm with a tiny brad.


Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Tag Tuesday - Christmas Colors: Navy, Turquoise, Red And Thanksgiving Postcard

We're starting the Christmas Season at Kard Krazy! Louise chose the first colors of Christmas to be Navy,Turquoise and Red. It was fun to pull out the Christmas things and start dreaming up ideas.

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I decoupaged navy and turquoise tissue scraps to a tag, stamped with a Christmas tree design, and attached an embossed gold over red scrap on one side. I made the ornament from a round tag with watercolor paint, Golden gel medium, small puffy gold star, gold pen and red fibers. It's topped off with a red and gold bow with a spiral in the center.

Hope all the artists who post at Kard Krazy have a Happy Thanksgiving!

And to acknowledge Thanksgiving here in the USA, I made a postcard for Sunday Postcard Art where the theme is just for that holiday this week.

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I covered a 4 x 6 card with copies of old newsprint, did a gel transfer of an image from a Thanksgiving postcard I have from 1909, added rubber stamping, distress inks, watercolor, tiny brad and Gold Leaf pen around the sides which doesn't show up very well in the scan. Thanks to the folks at Sunday Postcard Art for hosting a challenge for a US holiday!

Monday, November 22, 2010

All Buttoned Up

I took a magazine challenge to use buttons in a mixed media art piece. It's the first time I've ever tried something on the national level, and although it wasn't picked, I'm happy that I tried, and I think I'll try some more!


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I used  5 x 7 canvas, Golden Molding Paste, various buttons, glitter, Lumiere paint, watercolor paint, fibers, and ribbon. Gold leaf pen added for detail.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


No art right now, maybe later today. It's a lovely day here in the mountains of South Carolina and I hope I can spend some time outside. As we approach Thanksgiving, I am struck by the weight of the stresses of the day versus what is really important. It has been a rough year for me health wise, I am preparing for the 2nd surgery on my right eye, and it's the 3rd surgery of the year total. We have had a heart breaking month of events with our adopted son who struggles with severe emotional disabilities and other disorders; he is 18 and can not live at home and walked away from his residential care a month ago. He is now in trouble with the law and we really can't do anything to help him, except pray, which we do. My husband has had health issues, although not serious, they have been draining for him. Both of my sisters have had health issues this year, one of them very serious and it continues for her. All of my brothers have had family issues that have caused a great deal of pain. I continue to struggle with the ME/CFS and progress is slow. There have been many minor issues as well, but I don't want to list them all.

So, in the midst of this, what do I see as important? God's mercy. His grace. His love. The promise of eternity. That today is not forever. When the Bible talks about where your house is built (on the Rock or on the sand) and the storms that come and beat on it, it is an apt picture, for the storms do come and believe me they do beat down on you! But there is an unbelievable peace in the midst of the grief, a peace I cannot explain but am experiencing, that gives strength and sustains me. This life is simply not all that there is. It just isn't. The birds sing, the leaves glow, there is a breeze in the air. And frankly sometimes in the midst of grief, these things can almost seem irreverent, almost seem like a slap in my face and I want to shake my fist at them and say "How can these things be, this beauty, this loveliness, when I am in such pain and the world around me is upside down??"

But these things, this loveliness, is a promise. It's a statement to me, that no matter the darkness of the moment, the moment is not all there is. The moment does not define me. Instead I am defined by my Creator and the promise is that I will someday be in a better place where there is no pain and no grief. I am grown by the grief and pain, I am stretched by it but because of God's love of me, I am not overcome by it. There is much beauty around me and I will see it, and drink it in and be grown by it as well as the grief.

I am thankful for what is really important!

And now, I will take the dogs outside and enjoy this moment.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Tag Tuesday - Background Tag

Yes, I know that it's Thursday, but we are experiencing a severe crisis with a family member and I wasn't able to be in my studio for the first part of the week. I felt a need to be doing something, so yesterday I finished up the rest of the ATCs for the ATCDiva swap and got them in the mail before the deadline-yay! Then I decided I needed to do some more art, so I took the Tag Tuesday challenge from Kard Krazy. Louise has a lot going on in her life right now so she had a guest hostess for us - Pam from Scrappy Pam Designs. Pam's challenge is to design a background tag, where the background speaks for itself, and use a minimum of stamping or embellishment.

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I used Golden Fiber Paste first and dried it, then added distress inks, Red Velvet Glimmer Mist, charcoal pencil, Chinese White pencil, some light stamping with different stamps and inks, Spica pen and a small metal tag with twisted wire. This was a lot of fun to do, and was a different kind of focus for me. For more details, check on the tag on the Kard Krazy site and Pam's detailed list of how she did it on her site.

Friday, November 12, 2010

ATCDivas November ATCs

For November, the challenge was to make ATCs with a Pilgrim or Indian/Native American. And make six to send out. Here is mine:

From the Past

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I found these cute plastic mini figures of Indians on horseback, but they were in primary colors, so I painted them with Ranger Alcohol ink in metallic copper. I made the mini envelope from papers from Tim Holtz Nostalgic line and adhered it to the background. The Indians are held on with a jump ring through an eyelet on the envelope. To finish it, I used fabric leaves and bronze gems. Distress ink and Sakura pens used for detail. Inside the envelope are game discs (also in primary colors, spray paint changed that!) used to depict shields with two feathers attached to each one. 

It seems simple, but it took awhile to paint each of the figures and discs! Turned out pretty well, I think.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Tag Tuesday - Bingo!

The challenge today at Kard Krazy was to use a Bingo card on the tag. I have a stack of old Bingo cards in various colors and fonts, and all kinds of ideas came to mind, but then I remembered something I had saved from several months ago.

I have several 19th century French Bingo cards, and they are different from the American ones. One of them is yellow and the others are green. They are a treasure to me, but I did not put them up out of reach of my dogs. I came upon Abby gleefully tearing apart several of them, and one of them was the yellow one! Arrgh! Only an artist would save the pieces (right?) and I did, just for today. And I still have some left over!

French Bingo
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I attached them to the tag, added a few epoxy Fleur de Lis, a large Baroque tulip, and Sakura pens and Stickles for accents. It's topped off with fiber and ribbon anchored by a button with a pop of color.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Tag Tuesday - Front & Back; and Wax Resist ATC

What a great challenge Louise at Kard Krazy had for us today - a tag on which the design covered the front and back!


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I used a brown tag, distress inks, fabric leaves, shimmery fabric flower, jewels and variegated fibers.


And I also did an Wax Resist ATC for a swap. 

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I used a taper candle to mark on the paper, then brushed on 3 colors of thinned alcohol ink. I added the pearls in the shapes of hearts, and topped it of with two colors of waxed thread tied around the top. Sort of a tie dye or batik look!

Certainly two extremes of color palettes today!