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Being Yourself

Belated Happy Easter to you all ūüôā¬† Did you indulge in a huge chocolate-fest, or were you restrained and just¬†had a few little treats?¬† Did you spend time with family and friends, or take part in religious events?¬† Whatever you got up to, I hope you enjoyed yourselves and had a nice break.

I spent a lot of time with family and friends over the weekend, cleaned my house so it was fit for my Mum to visit and stay in for a couple of nights, and did some crafting.¬† I am still loving the Kelly Rae Roberts Unscripted series I have subscribed to.¬† It’s just makes me want to craft and create and DO STUFF.¬† I am nowhere near her standard of creativity and art, but it is very enjoyable just mucking about with paints and paper and having a go.¬† I am still rubbish at faces, but I keep trying and hope that some day I will get them just right!¬† If only people didn’t have eyes!¬† It would make everything so much simpler for me, at least in terms of drawing and painting (maybe not so much in real life though…) and I wouldn’t end up having tantrums, or just drawing a lot of people with closed eyes (which is my default position these days).

I had this little communion plaque (bought on a recent op-shopping trip for 50c) and I thought it would be perfect to paint over and repurpose.¬† It’s quite small – a little bigger than an iPhone – so perfect for me to do some crafting on!¬† Plus it had the little hanger on it so I didn’t need to worry about adding one myself.

I removed the picture that was already on it ( a communion poem and prayer) and sanded the wood back, then slapped on a layer of white Gesso, just to seal and give it a good working surface.  I then added paint in various colours to create a distressed, rubbed back look.  I used a soft green, some burgundy and a little bit of yellow Рjust dabbing and rubbing it on with my fingers.  When I was happy with the effect, I let it dry whilst figuring out what I was going to put on it.

I decided to draw my little lady on a separate piece of paper, paint her main features and then cut her out, to be glued¬†and finished on the plaque itself.¬† I didn’t trust my drawing/painting skills to just add her straight to the wooden surface.¬† I adhered her with gel medium and then added¬†flowers and wings cut from scrapbooking paper and vintage¬†books.¬† The words were cut from old books or stamped (when I couldn’t find the word I wanted!) and I’m not quite satisfied with them, but they’re stuck on there now!¬† I might go over them with a bit of colour, just to make them look less “new” and pale.¬† I outlined here and there with black and white pencils to give some definition.

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I was a bit heavy-handed with the lady’s¬†features – I was using a very¬†fine black marker, but it was still too heavy.¬† I will do better next time!¬†I’m happy with her top though – it came out very rustic looking and picks up the red colour in the background – and I’m glad I added the¬†“me” heart as it needed an extra little something.

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So, all in all, I was pretty happy with my little lady.¬† I am trying to be myself and be ok with who that is.¬† Even if it means I am not the world’s greatest artist ūüôā¬† I am still trying to find my “niche”, artistically speaking, so this is another part of the journey.¬† I will keep practicing faces and different techniques with paint and drawing and, in the meantime have a lot of messy fun doing it ūüôā

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Thanks for stopping by – may you enjoy the freedom of being yourself,
whoever that is, today and always x

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Learn to Fly

Hello everyone!¬† Hope you’re having a lovely day ūüôā¬† I had a very productive and pro-active weekend, tidying up and getting things sorted out.¬† I finally finished cleaning up my outdoor area (I have a sort of closed-in patio) so it is actually fit for human habitation and I moved my outdoor setting over so I could now sit and have a cup of tea and look at my plants and not battle spiders, cobwebs and general disorder.

I took a load of stuff to the op-shop (clothes I never wear and shoes I fall down in) and made plans for further de-cluttering and sorting.¬† It feels good to get some stuff done and not waste my weekend.¬† I have fallen in to a bit of a rut, not just creatively, but in all aspects of life, and things have gotten on top of me.¬† So I need to have a plan of action for each day.¬† That way, I can whittle away at all the big jobs, and they won’t seem so overwhelming.¬† I also need to stop being lazy ūüôā

After tidying up and doing some housework (just a bit – let’s not crazy here!), I got stuck into some craft.¬† I have been so down in the dumps about my lack of creative ability that I really needed something to spur me on and get me fired up again.¬† I recently subscribed to Kelly Rae Roberts Unscripted¬†video series and it’s been just the kick in the pants I needed.¬† She is such an inspiration – not just because her work is beautiful, but because she just goes with the flow and creates from the heart and doesn’t let mistakes and bad days get in her way.¬† If she makes a boo-boo, she either paints over it or makes it part of the design.¬† She creates for no one else but herself, and that’s what I need to do – stop thinking about what everyone else thinks.¬† I’m¬†so glad I subscribed – I really had to think about spending the money, but I can cancel at any time and, if it makes me start creating and making art again, it is totally worth it.

I don’t want to copy Kelly Rae, but at the moment I am just drawing from her art and ideas to get me started again.¬† Sometimes you need to imitate before you instigate I guess!

So, with all of that in mind, I created this piece.¬† I am kinda happy with it.¬† I love the colours and the text and it all came together pretty easily (albeit with a lot of false starts and paint-overs!).¬† I tried not to overthink it, and just CREATE.¬† Afterwards, I sat up late, sketching out rough plans and ideas for more collages and pictures.¬† I feel like I am ready to start making stuff again.¬† My mojo might be returning at last!¬† This piece isn’t perfect by any means, but I’m so glad I got it done (and that it didn’t end up in the bin, which happens sometimes!).¬† I’m learning to fly again ūüôā

Thanks for stopping by x

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Tiny Town (Torn Paper Collage)

Some time ago, our art therapist at work let me borrow a couple of her art books for the weekend. ¬†They were great little books – filled with simple ideas for getting your art on. ¬†One of them had some lovely collage ideas and I particularly liked a¬†torn-paper cityscape. ¬†I cannot remember the name of the book, but I’m pretty sure it was published by Usborne and the artwork work was possibly Fiona Watt. ¬†Apologies to both artist and publisher if I have remembered this incorrectly (if anyone can enlighten me, do let me know).

Anyway, I kept this idea buried in the recesses of my brain (a dark and cobweb-covered place if ever there was one!), thinking it would be a good little project to try if I was ever in need of some creative inspiration.  Well, right now, I am in desperate need, so I decided to give this one a go.  I liked the simplicity of the technique, as well as the small amount of materials (and, therefore, mess) it required.

Simply tearing different sized strips of paper, in different shades, adding details with pen and markers, and gluing them down into a simple cityscape Рwhat could be easier?  It was very therapeutic and I enjoyed adding the details, including the teeny little and flags.

So, here it is! ¬†My Tiny Town. ¬†I didn’t get the perspective quite right – there’s a couple of “floating” buildings – and I didn’t have a fine enough white pen to get the nice detail I would have liked but, all in all, I am pretty happy with it. ¬†I added the dark sky as I felt it needed some extra colour and interest. ¬†The original idea in the book didn’t have text but, as I am a bit word-obsessed, I added a few lines from a poem, which I think finished it off quite nicely. ¬†I made this as a card, but I’m thinking I might make a few as little framed pieces. ¬†What do you think?

So, happy to have just tried something new (without it being COMPLETELY out of my comfort zone – I mean, it’s still paper after all!) and gotten¬†closer to leaving the creative slump I currently find myself in. ¬†I’m definitely going to make a few more of these, just because they were fun and easy and I didn’t have to think too much ūüôā ¬† I try not to copy other people’s work, but sometimes I think you need to just borrow a bit of creativity, in order to get your own up and running again.

Thanks for dropping by – have a lovely day ūüôā

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Creative Copying

Sometimes I am very inspired and know EXACTLY what I want to do, craft-wise.  Other times, I am clueless and spend ages just mucking about, not knowing what I want to do, and feeling rotten about it.  Completely uninspired (and pathetic), you could say. Just lately, I have been unable to make ANYTHING and just feel like I have no creative ability whatsoever.  At all.  Nada.  Zippo.  Zilch.

So, this weekend, I utilised a bit of creative copying in order to get my mojo back.  Having had a birthday recently, my shelves were full of lovely greeting cards.  Granted, I should have taken them down some weeks ago but, it will surprise no one to know, I am lazy and slack, and they were still sitting there, a month and a half after the event.  However, there were a couple that I really liked the design of Рthe shapes of some of their images Рso I had a go at using them for templates to make my own cards and other items.

First up, I had this cute birdie card.  I liked the simple shapes and was pretty sure I could use them to create a design of my own.  Plus, you know me, I love birds, so it was a no-brainer in terms of subject matter.

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Cute birdy birthday card!

I started by tracing the basic shapes of each bird Рbodies, feathers, tails etc.  I then traced those shapes on to cardboard, so I could cut them out and have them as patterns.  Using pretty, coordinated papers, I traced and cut out the shapes to build the various body parts of the bird, and then arranged them together until I was happy with the overall look.

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Placing all the pieces together…

In the end, I decided to put it all together on a notebook for my Mum, to say thank you for her support and always looking after us (even though we’re old enough to look after ourselves.¬† Apparently).¬† I painted a plain little notebook and bound the edges with washi tape, before gluing the birdie to the front cover.
I added a crown and some text cut from an old book.

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Finished Birdie Notebook

It’s not the greatest work of art on the planet, and I can’t say I was thrilled with the final product, but I had made SOMETHING and that is better than nothing.¬† I just needed to get back into things and “play” a little, even if the end result wasn’t spectacular.¬†Otherwise I feel as though I am losing all my creativity and desire to create in the first place.¬† And that’s not a good thing.

So, one little birdie at a time, I am going to get my mojo back. Send cookies and hugs ūüôā

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Ready To Rock (Cat Collage Card)

I don’t know about you, but I am very rarely primed and ready to do anything, let alone¬†rock. ¬†I follow more of a resigned and begrudging style of embracing life, to be honest. ¬†Not so my nieces and nephews. ¬†I have been spending a lot of time with them lately, and one of their favourite things to do is craft. ¬†Whether it be colouring in or drawing, making collages or cards, or a combination of all four, they really love being creative. ¬†Which is a bit of a relief. ¬†What if they were super sporty or into playing computer games? *shudders*

A couple of weekends ago, we had a few happy hours of card-making and magazine-scrap collage-making. ¬†Good fun. ¬†The kids are so good at it because they just CREATE. ¬†They don’t think too much or worry about anything other than putting paper and glue together in a design them pleases them. ¬†Bliss.

Anyway, as all good Aunties must, I had to participate in the activity – just being a casual bystander was not going to be acceptable. ¬†Can’t say I minded – what better way to spend a few hours than with little people I love, doing something I love almost as much.

So, this funny little cat card was one of my completed pieces. ¬†Made from scraps of scrapbooking paper, corrugated card and pieces¬†cut from magazines, it came together pretty quickly. ¬†The hardest part was finding the “rock” text (which, of course, I could have just cut out from individual letters).

I like the cat’s saggy little belly and his general attitude. ¬†Who doesn’t love a tabby in a party hat? ¬†All he is missing is some cheese on a stick and he’s good to go ūüôā

Hope you are primed and ready, to do whatever you need to do today –
thank you for reading x

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That’s That

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just say “Everything is ok and that’s all there is to it…” and then everything would just miraculously be fine and dandy? ¬†If only!

This little birdie is standing defiant and saying “No, I will not let things get to me – everything’s ok and I won’t hear any negativity today!” ¬†She’s even pulled her crown down over her earholes, just in case. ¬†Might as well block out the naysayers and the party-poopers (there are lots of party poopers in the bird world, I’ve heard), and anyone who starts their conversations with “You can’t” or “Yes, but..” will be summarily banished from the nesting box. ¬†It’s that simple.

Hope your world is full of positive people today and that your mind is free from worries.  If not, just pull your crown on tighter and ignore the heck out of anyone or anything that threatens to rain on your parade.

Take care of yourselves x

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Flying Fish

Oh to be a flying fish!
With scales of feathered gold
To swim the air and fly the seas
In sunshine bright and bold…

Yeah, maybe writing poetry about flying fish isn’t exactly my strong point.¬† But how else to start a post that features a half-bird/half-fish creature on a card?

This one came about because I had used the other body parts of both animals in previous cards and had some spare bits laying around.¬† You know me, can’t throw anything out.

So, the flying fishy was born.¬† And bedazzled.¬† And bedecked with a hat. I think he’s rather nice and suited the sky-themed backing papers quite well.¬† I didn’t add any extra text or wording because I wanted it to be suitable for any occasion.¬† And I was being lazy (as per usual).¬† I feel it is more of a masculine card, which is good because I tend to neglect that demographic when making things.¬† “Got any nice cards for blokes?” people ask me, and I shake my head sadly and say “No…sorry…”¬† So maybe this one will suffice.

Hope you are having a good week РI feel it has been a long, tiresome one, with lots going on,  and I am feeling a bit like a fish out of water myself.

Take care and thank you for dropping in to visit ūüôā

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