PagesPat's Ponderings

Monday, June 30, 2014

Let the Sun In!

Don't you just love summer?  Especially after that freakish winter and bi-polar Spring? Squigglefly has a new challenge this week-Create a card using the shape of the sun: "add any type of embellishment that includes a sun shape on your card, this can be a die cut, a pattern on your cardstock, a button shape, an brad or eyelet, an embellishment, or part of your image."
I decided to go with a sun-shaped card. I played with two of Sandra Caldwell's images released by Squigglefly this month, Americana Beauty and Firecrackers, coloring them both with Copics. In keeping with the roundness of the sun (and my card base, I framed both images with red and blue cardstock, adding a little Stickles for shimmer and shine.
I embossed the words I love America and added a line of pearls and a couple ribbon bows for embellishments. I inked the edges of my card with coordinating ink and I have the perfect birthday card for my daughter, who turns 19 this 4th of July. Happy early bitthday, Wendy!!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Memories of Seattle Aquarium in Water Color

We took a trip to Seattle over Spring Break so that we could check out Seattle University for when she completes her A.A. at the community college. It was fantastic, so much so that I want to go back to college as well!!!
We also took in the sights, including the Aquarium. It was an awesome visit, and I took tons of photos. One of them inspired me to water color this today.
I am a novice to water colors, but the last couple I've completed, I've liked enough to sign my name to them. This is one of them. Although to be honest, I should have started the jelly fish higher on the paper, as its tentacles(?) should be longer.
I'm going to dig up more photos that I can possibly use to practice my water colors. Have you tried sketching or painting from photographs?Any tips you can give me??

Just Flying Through

Another day, another attempt at a landscape! Today I painted wet on wet and made a background of sorts and let it dry.
Then I painted what I hope looks to you like a tree. I think I did a pretty decent job. I even tried to get some dimension by painting thin lines into the trunk and up into the bushy leaves.
My scene looked pretty bare until I tried to let some high-flying birds float past my tree.
I guess I need a little more practice with letting the colors blend together in my sky. Doesn't matter, I'm having fun with my new "passion."
Have you started a new passion?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries

Got some time to play with water colors and ended up with a page full of brightly-colored circles. They reminded hubby of cherries so I added stems and a sentiment to my newest water color journal page.
I dipped my brush in water and then one corner went into a magenta paint and the other in yellow. Then I swirled circles with my brush.
Still learning what paint will do in water, and water will do to paint, but having fun during the learning process!
This week I was challenged to do something adventurous, something I fear. After thinking about it, I discovered that what I fear most is being embarrassed.
So to me, showing you my "experiments" in water colors is facing my fears. I know I'm no artist, but by showing visitors my attempts to improve on my technique, I might just help someone else face their own fears.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Squigglefly CAS Card Challenge

I love to throw on everything but the kitchen sink when I make cards, so a challenge like Squigglefly put forth using "Just one layer" was really difficult.
I decided to pull out the embossing gun and powders, dust them off, and create some dimension and design on my plain blue cardstock.
I used a Squigglefly June release called "Baseball" by James Horvath, coloring this enthusiastic boy with Copics before framing him with black cardstock. I inked the edges with black ink to finish off my card.
Ready to step out of your comfort zone? Try the Squigglefly challenge this week!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

DS4J Progressive Christmas Card Challenge

Today I made a Christmas card for the Digi Stamps 4 Joy Christmas card challenge. I received a lovely image created by Margy called Snow Globe.
I decided to create an easel card. I colored the image with Copics and embellished with homemade SoftSnow (kind of like Flower Soft). I covered my card base with pine needle patterned paper from DCWV.
I added a sprig of Christmas flowers (it even has jingle bells) made by my talented friend Shannon. A metal charm holds the card front in place. You can't read it in the photo, but the round silver brad reads, "Santa Rocks!"
I really like this challenge, as it only requires one card a month. Also, if you participate in the challenge, you receive your next image free. So if you have a hankering to get some Christmas cards finished well in time for the holidays, go check out the DS4J Progressive Christmas card challenge.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Happiness Theme on the Path of Positivity

Come celebrate the theme of HAPPINESS on the Path of Positivity Challenge blog!!

Happiness isn’t a thing; it’s a state of mind. Just like Alice who could …(believe) in as many as six impossible things before breakfast,” I can be happy with little things like a sunny day, a cool glass of iced tea and purple nail polish. I can also be happy with big things like my car, my laptop, my Cricut Expressions and my exercise bike. Then there are those things that I can take for granted until they’re gone if I let them, HUGE things, like my husband of 37 years, my brilliant teen daughter, my son and his new family, my sisters and mom and even my 103 year old grandma, my home, my health…I jump for joy even writing about all the happiness in my life—not because I go searching for it, but because I appreciate all that I have.
And that’s the true secret to happiness: don’t look for specific things you think will make you happy. Look around you and recognize what you already have!
Open your senses to the world around you. See how happy you are on a sunny day, a rainy day, the antics of a squirrel or the success of your favorite sports teams; smell how happy you are breathing in the scent of flowers, campfires and babies’ powdered butts make you feel; listen to how happy you are while hearing birds sing, kids laughing and waves lapping at the shore; taste how happy you are with a mouthful of chocolate chip cookies, ice cream or a juicy grilled steak makes you feel.
Feel happy when you paint, stamp, sculpt or write, hug a friend, or hold a child’s hand in yours; feel happy when you’re out on a walk, riding your bike or running with your dog.
Why? Because you can! 
My project today is a piece of altered art. I bought a framed cork board at the thrift store (all of 49 cents) and Mod Podged the frame with tie-dyed designer napkins to give it a surreal "Wonderland" look. Using a piece of Basic Grey patterned paper from the Serendipity stack, I distressed the edges with Tim Holtz inks (Spiced Marmalade, Barn Door, Faded Jeans & Bundled Sage).
The digi image is called Alice and is from Ike's Art, one of the Path of Positivity's regular sponsors. She has the best variety of images! If I had had the room on my project, I would have added the mad Hatter, the chesire KAT and the Rabbit as well!  All these characters are part of Ike's "Alice" series. I colored Alice with Copics and then fussy cut her out. 
Before adhering her to my scene, I cut out parts of some Basic Grey and CTMH papers, using those parts as embellishments to symbolize the red-painted roses for the Queen and a well-traveled world.  More embellishments play up the rabbit's pocket watch as well the key which symbolizes the key to happiness, which in Alice's case ended up being the way back home. I added some sequins and pearls to lend sparkle and shine to my project and it's ready to hang!
You need to think happy thoughts so you can fly high on the magic of happiness (hmm, sounds like I have more inspiration boiling away in my brain, somewhere around the second star to the right maybe?). 
Don’t search for happiness—let it fill you up in all the daily moments of your life.
Your smile will never leave your face!
Want to play with us? Have a positive spin on life and wish to share it? Show us your take on the theme of HAPPINESS at the Path of Positivity Challenge Blog.  It could be a poem, a layout, a canvas, a card, or a simple story you need to tell. This challenge ends July 6! 

Hot Enough For You?

Summer with its blue skies and orange sunsets is the theme for this week's challenge over at the Squigglefly Challenge Blog. Use a Squigglefly image (freebies here) with blues or oranges on your project this week and you could win free digis!
My card uses a Squigglefly new release called "Earth Keeper" by artist Niina Niskanen. I colored my image with oranges, yellows, greens and blues. The patterned paper is a rich mix of blues and green. I added skittles, a green paper clip and star, and a Tim Holtz metal charm for embellishments. The charm reads: "Encourage your hopes, not your fears."
Don't forget to link your card or project with Squigglefly for your chance to win.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

New Challenge with a Twist at SBP Challenge Blog

Today SBP Challenge Blog offers crafters a Sketch with a Twist challenge.  One random winner will receive their choice of digi images at Creative Bug Digis.
I got to play with Bed Jumping Sock Monkeys along with this sketch:
Before I show you my interpretation of the challenge, the TWIST is to use a tag(s) on your project, something in addition to the elements you see in the sketch! Here's what I came up with:
I diecut the image with a flower die from Spellbinders Nestabilities!! The tag slips behind the sentiment. All papers used were leftovers from my not-so-secret stash, as in the elephant in the room!
I had so much fun making a card with this sketch and using a CBD digi image that I made a second one using an image called "Twigs."
Here, I placed a snowflake in the flower's center, tilted the image the other way, and stamped my sentiment onto a duo of tiny tags. Again, I used leftovers from my infamous file drawer of leftovers.

I hope you've been inspired to try creating with a sketch. I rarely start my projects with a sketch or plan. I usually get an a-ha moment and dash off to my craft room to see if it would work.
Now it's your turn to check out the fabulous images at Creative Bug Digis, and create something that could win you a few free digis over there!! Challenge is open until the end of the month.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Grad Parties Galore!

June is the month of closure for many--saying goodbye to school friends, cleaning out lockers, moving back home...
And then again, it's the month for new beginnings--taking a summer course so that you're not totally clueless navigating the high school halls come the Fall, moving back home, applying and interviewing and hopefully getting that job you've spent four years preparing for...
But mostly it is the month for graduation parties.  I have just two to attend, but both are "doubles" parties. One was for my grandsons, who graduated from high school (Tony) and 8th grade (Jaylen). Their cards are pictured above. I spent almost as much time looking for awesome quotes that fit each boy as I did creating the cards, but I managed to find the following:
For Tony, "It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are"
For Jay, "Always be a first-rate version of yourself,instead of a second-rate version of somebody else"

The next party if for two sisters, Brittany graduating from college, and Samantha from high school. This is for Sam,
and this is for Brittany:
Looks like a lot of schools have red and black for their colors!!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Only 199 Days Before Christmas

Squigglefly has a new artist creating images for them!! It's someone whose images I love to color. Her name is Sandra Caldwell and I made my card today using Americana Beauty.
The challenge this week is to make a Christmas card, and I love to take images from one holiday and use it for a different one. Here, I colored this Americana Beauty with greens and reds and pulled out my Christmas papers. I used white gel pen to draw faux stitches around her to coordinate with the stitches on the patterned paper, which is from the DCWV paper stack. along with the photo corners.
The red ad green bow with bells attached is from a set of Christmas earrings, one of which was lost sometime between Christmas and New Year's. I never throw away the matching earring, as I can always find a use for it in my craft room.
So, why don't you get a headstart on your Christmas cards by joining in this week's Squigglefly challenge? One random winner will receive free digis of their choice! What are you waiting for? Time's running out!!

Friday, June 6, 2014

Watering My Crafting World

I added two more pages to my water color art journal today, and wanted to share them with you.
I created a blue green background and experimented with the paint while it was wet by pressing my finger numerous times onto the page. Since my journal is around 6x9, I cut my dry painting in half.

I used versamark ink and embossing powders and stamped a QKD image of a headphone-wearing fairy in the corner, embellishing with another stamp of musical notes. Some Washi tape, a sticker, and a floral stick complete the embellishments, while alpha stickers complete my sentiment, "Music Lifts my Soul."

For my second page, I decorated my pages completely with stamping and embossing. The stamps are from IndigoBlue, the ink is the VersaMark Dazzle ink, and I used Stampin Up Clear Glitter, white and purple embossing powders. I used green flocking powder on the flora at the bottom of the page.

I usually don't use powders often in my crafting, but I really like the way it looks on the heavyweight watercolor paper. The sentiment reads, "Live every moment, Laugh every day, Love beyond words."

I am really enjoying experimenting in water colors, and just won a certificate for free tuition for a non-credit class at the community college in town. Maybe I'll take an art class!!

Meanwhile, it's ANYTHING GOES at Art by Miran.See you there!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Anything Goes is the Challenge

Got some time to craft over the weekend and colored up this pretty image from Art by MiRan.
I used up some paper pieces from my stash to make a background, then framed my Copic-colored image, called "Catching Hearts."
I embellished simply with a few candy heart brads and a charm I placed in the middle of a paper flower.
I'm entering my card in the Anything Goes challenge at Art by Miran. And as soon as payday comes along, I will be adding to my Art by Miran inventory.  I LOVE these cute images.

Monday, June 2, 2014

50 Things That Make Me Happy

Today starts a new challenge over at the Path of Positivity Challenge Blog. The theme this month is that elusive butterfly called HAPPINESS. Our guest sponsor this month is Fresh Brewed Designs. I got to play with an image called Daffodil Plants.
My project today started out as a watercolor. By the time I was finished, it turned into a mixed media piece of art. I used stencils, pigment ink, FlowerSoft, Stickles, the FBD digi image colored with Copics, and my black and white gel pens (my daughter gifted me with a "clean craft table" for Mother's day-if I had been able to find more media to throw on my painting, I would have).

Happiness means different things to different people.  I may have mentioned a few times that I love to make lists. I compiled a list of the first 50 things that make me HAPPY today. Some are trivial, some are key to my whole life; some are temporary, some I hope to have forever. All make me happy in this moment and I am thankful for them. So I used another Fresh Brewed Designs image called "Groovy" and altered a composition book in which I can write this list as well as others.
Materials used for this spiffy notebook include Gesso, homemade ModPodge, designer napkins, Stickles, pigment ink,and cardstock stickers. I even decorated a pen with washi tape and a feather "stick" from the clearance rack in the floral section to make writing my lists even more fun.

50 Things That Make Me Happy:
Purple Nail Polish                    Iced Tea
Double-Stuffed OREOs           Girls’ Night Out

Time to Craft                           Copic Markers

Grandkids                             a Tech-Savvy Hubby

A Good Book                        a Good Hair Day 

Sushi                                    a Good Nite’s Sleep

My iPod                                   Scented Candles

My Laptop                            Buttered Popcorn

Fuzzy Socks                              Sunshine
BFFs                                    a Full Tank of Gas
My Mom lives Nearby          My Gram's Still Alive
Sisters                                      Musicals
My daughters                        Kittens & puppies
My son                                  a Clean House
Rainbows                              Getting All Bills Paid
Writing Poetry                         Watercolors
Chocolate                                  Hugs
Date Night                               Christmas
Working Out                           Riding My Bike
Clean Bill of Health                A Finished Canvas
Dancing                                 Making Lists
Swedish Massage                Playing Board Games
Lying on the Beach      watching Mama Mia w/Wendy
Pizza                                     Flying First Class
Scrapbooking                          Making Lists
I had to stop here, although I could have gone on and on. What about you? Can you come up with 50 things? Is it difficult to stop at 50? What makes you happy at this moment in time? We at the Path of Positivity want to know. Show us in an art project, card or photo. Tell us in a post. Share a poem with us.
We have some lovely prizes to give away. 
The sponsors and prizes for this challenge are:
  • Ten digital images from Creative Bug Digitals for the person out of the top seven who receives the most votes during voting week.
  • Three digital images from Ike's World for the post or project that the DT deems most inspiring of the bunch.
  • Three digital images from Fresh Brewed Designs, our guest sponsors this month, for a person chosen in a random draw based on all entrants.
  • One digital designer paper from Décosse's Dynamite Doodles for one lucky voter who leaves a comment.
  • One digital sentiment for every single person who enters the challenge from Décosse's Dynamite Doodles as well.

Awesome Dad Deserves an Awesome Card

Squigglefly Challenge Blog offers the perfect challenge for June-Make a Father's Day card using a Squigglefly image.
I used a June new release from Squigglefly called "Cow" by artist James Horvath to make mine.
My sentiment is a two-parter: the front reads "You're an amazing Dad..." and the inside reads "...and that's no BULL." LOL
I colored my image with Copics and framed it with black cardstock, along with the sentiment. I kept the embellishments simple-just two black sequins that finish my card.
And my daughter has already claimed it for her own, so I guess hubby will be getting this one later this month!
Time for you to create a Father's Day card using a Squigglefly image. Who knows? This week could be your lucky challenge.