Happy New Year 2015!!

It has been a long and busy year.  My goal last year was to try to do art daily and if not that then at least weekly and if not THAT then at least more than I had been making art in the previous year.

Well, I might not have achieved the first goal and I was able to keep the weekly schedule for quite some time.  However, I do believe that I was able to art-related projects a LOT more often than I did in the previous year.  I started getting more comfortable with just enjoying the process instead of stressing over every little thing that I went to apply to my pages.  I made some wall art for my new grandson who was born in March:

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His room had a nautical theme and so I painted his initials in matching colors using an “altered” color chart of the nautical alphabet.  They really look nice in his room!

Later in the spring I hosted a journal/personal creativity day at my home for the girls in the youth group at our church.  Several of the adult ladies came as well and we had a grand time!  We will be doing this again some time in the future.  🙂

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July 4th came and we celebrated at a friend’s house.  I passed some of the lazy afternoon having fun playing with some of my phone’s photo apps.  It almost looks like a really old photo….that is until you spot the Cheez-Its!

2014-07-05 09.33.01Right after the 4th I was enlisted to help our church’s Vacation Bible School program by decorating the main sanctuary and the hallways and classrooms for the children that would be attending.  I cut out, painted and–with the help of my dear husband–lit a rocket that was in the theme of the VBS week.  We hung “planets” and stars all throughout the church.  I made the planets with Chinese lanterns.  But planets don’t have holes in their bottoms so I had to glue a piece of tissue paper in the lanterns before I painted them with the Liquitex acrylic sprays.  It was a LOT of work but it turned out so well and the both the kids and the adults really enjoyed it for two Sundays and VBS week.

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I did do some things for my on-going online classes.  I worked some off and on with the Documented Life Project.  It is going on again this year and it is free like last year. They will be doing some journal work this year in addition to just the planners.  If you haven’t seen it, you should check it out HERE.

I also had signed up for the Serendipity 2 online class with Juliette Crane which opened in September.  I was very intimidated and so I haven’t really done a lot with it.  I did complete a couple of backgrounds as instructed but I was so unsure of myself with adding the figure that I did that as a “practice” on a second sheet.  It is a year-long offering (Sept-Sept) so I will have many more chances to try to catch up.  If I can just get enough confidence to put the two parts together before the class is over I will feel as though I will have accomplished a lot.  We’ll have to see if I can accomplish this in 2015!

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Somewhere along the way I entered Jodi Ohl’s Grunge Ink online class.  I have enjoyed what I learned in this class immensely.  Although I don’t feel that I performed the techniques quite as well as they should have been done, I had fun and I was able to adapt the techniques to suit my own style and purposes.  The class was performed solely on Yupo Paper, which I have never been able to use with any real success.  Now I have a new appreciation for it and its unique properties.  Jodi is a FABULOUS instructor and I would highly recommend any of her classes.  Here are some of the pieces I made with the last one being a New Year’s gift for another artist friend.

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scan.040Another class I dabbled in was Traci Bautista’s PrintMaking Unleashed online class.  It mirrors many (not all) of the techniques offered in her book by the same name.  It is a great technique class and I really had a lot of fun with it.  I will be using some of the “tricks” I learned in that class probably for the rest of my art life.  They are simple, fun and organic–something that I have some difficulty achieving at times.  Here is a set of journal pages at start and finish that I did primarily influenced by techniques learned in Traci’s class.

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2015-01-01 17.55.08-1Last but certainly not least, I joined Mary Beth Shaw’s, the StencilGirl herself, monthly stencil club.  It is a great deal where you get a new set of three stencils of small, medium and large stencils for $25/month–which includes shipping and handling.  Only those registered for the club are able to obtain any of the club-issued stencils.  Her stencils are very thin and sturdy and of excellent quality.  I was feeling a little festive this holiday season and did a very bright set of pages using only two stencils that I obtained through normal StencilGirl company purchases.  The pages are shown below.  StencilGirl stencils have many offerings for purchase that do not require any club membership.  You should check them out if you like stencils.

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Not shown is a card created as consignment project for a friend who was giving sentimental bricks from a demolished building to children she knew that had attended a local high school that had recently been torn down and rebuilt.  She wanted some type of little “placard” card that would memorialize the bricks and sentimentality of the event.  I got a brick stencil from Michael’s and went to work.  It was difficult to make 8+ of them in a short period of time.  I ended up spray painting a sturdy piece of paper with Liquitex Acrylic Spray Paint in the school’s blue color and then overlaying the stencil and over spraying with the yellow.  I was amazed but the technique worked. In any event, my friend put them in a shadow box presentation and they looked fabulous when she finished.  The recipients were extremely pleased and loved their thoughtful and partially hand-made gifts.  🙂

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Seems it’s either feast or famine on this blog of mine, eh?  Sorry about that.  This year I am going to try to do a little better with being more consistent.  We’ll see how THAT works for me!

Oh, and one last thing.  I captured this at the end of 2014.  One of the largest, most vibrant rainbows I have ever had the pleasure of observing. The photo below cannot do it justice. Here is to blessings and rainbows in 2015!

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