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Posts Tagged ‘Somerset Studio’

Way back when it was spring, I was planning on submitting a piece for Somerset Studio’s ‘winter’ theme. I started creating this paper that I was going to use as a background for….something.

I wasn’t able complete the background paper, let alone the project itself, in time to submit it. As a matter of fact, I only just finished my background paper within the last couple weeks.

So here it is….

layered paper

layered paper

And a couple close-ups…

layered paper

layered paper

layered paper

layered paper

I wanted to create a spare but layered look using black, white, and ivory as my palette. I started with a piece of watercolor paper, and sprinkled some coffee on it to start (gets rid of that blank white paper staring back at me). Next came pieces of paper I tore from a pamphlet from Opera Philadelphia, which was ivory, black, and grey, with a little red. After that I added layer upon layer upon layer of paint (Liquitex Basics), stamping (using found stamps like corks, pencil erasers, and small plastic lids), pretty tape (Tim Holtz), glitter glue (Tim Holtz), German scrap, and lace. Lots of layers. I think I got a little carried away….

I had always intended for this background paper to be cut into smaller pieces, so I added the German scrap and lace with that in mind.

Here are a couple pictures…these show the paper I tore from the Opera Philadelphia pamphlet:

beginnings of layered paper

beginnings of layered paper

layered paper - beginning

layered paper – beginning

I’ve now decided to make an accordion book, which I have never done before. For years now I’ve wanted to make a project incorporating some of the lines from Tori Amos’ song Winter. I thought that would be fitting with this paper and its original intention.

So that is my current project. At least the one that I am focusing on, since I have at least five other projects started!

Thanks for stopping by!

Dawne

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It’s been a while since I posted…I have no good excuse really, I just have been really busy (I really dislike that word!) or something I guess. I have plenty to post about though, that’s for sure!

So one of my goals for this year is to submit four items to magazines. My Christmas ornaments fell through, I did submit my encouragement cards but I haven’t heard anything so I’ll take that as a no. And last Friday I mailed some new ATCs – I call them the “sunshine happy sparkle” sisters.

three sisters

I made these for the “aqua” theme for an upcoming issue of Somerset Studio. I’m pleased with how they turned out, although it was not easy to get them done in time – they had to be in California today.

When I thought of the color aqua, I thought of children, happiness, bright colors, summer, and fun. Then – and this is how crazy inspiration often is – I was walking down the hall at work thinking about sparkly things (hey, I need a break sometimes from all the numbers I work with!), and then I noticed how sunny and pretty it was outside, so I was thinking about sunshine sparkles. Somehow that turned into sunshine happy sparkle (which sounds like a Japanese interpretation). And suddenly the idea popped into my head to make the ATCs featuring three sisters named Sunshine, Happy, and Sparkle.

I wrote a little story about the sisters and printed it onto tissue paper, which I glued onto the ATCs (I used premade watercolor paper ATCs). I painted over that with aqua, then stamped over that. I printed out the photos and colored them with pencils. And of course I had to add some sparkle with stick-on rhinestones. I put masking tape across the bottom, and I inked over the tape a bit to dull down the black. Et voila!

I think they turned out cute, and definitely captured what I was aiming for.

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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So I did not finish my Christmas ornaments to submit to Somerset Studio. I realized there was simply no way I could get them done in time to get them to California by the 15th. I did not manage my time well, and I worked on other things when I should have been working on my ornaments. oh well. I’m disappointed, but I will finish them and save them for next year instead. I really like how they are coming along…what do you think?

pink&glitter ornaments

deck the halls

pink cheer

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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I’ve been frustrated lately. I feel like I’ve accomplished little so far this year. I did finally finish my March page in my calendar journal at least (two days ago!). And I got my Mom’s necklace done.

Sometimes I just feel like giving up my arts and crafts. But I know I would be miserable. So I will just have to keep going, little by little.

Here is my March page…I think it turned out really pretty.

march calendar page

march calendar page

march calendar page

march calendar page

march calendar page

march calendar page

I have an idea for a digital art project, and I’ve been slowly going through my collection of vintage photographs of women, looking for suitable photos to use. This will definitely be a long-term project; I don’t expect to be done until next year!

I’ve also been gathering supplies to make some Christmas ornaments that I am planning to submit to Somerset Studio. I’ve been wanting to make something for the Christmas issue for a couple years now, and I’ve decided to actually do it this time. Unfortunately our printer is broken, and I can’t do much more until we get a new one. Which hopefully will be reasonably soon.

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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The first few weeks of January are so busy for me at work….I finally now have time to post again. I feel like it’s been forever! For some reason when I don’t post for a while, I always find it difficult to get motivated again…

But here I am!

I mentioned in a previous post an article in Somerset Studio by Kate Crane, featuring her beautiful calendar journals, and how inspired I felt to make my own.

That was in December, when I was too busy with holiday preparation to start anything. I started working on it on New Year’s Eve; it was very slow going and I was afraid it would be February before my January page was done!

But I finally finished it…and here it is.

bonne annee

I’m very happy with how it turned out. I wanted the colors and feel to be wintry, but not just white. I wanted a little color. The photos don’t quite do it justice.

The background is several layers of paint and rubber stamping. The squares are 1.5 by 1.5 inches, and are scrapbook paper, dry-brushed with gesso and edged with gold or silver ink. I used German scrap along the edges and corners; it was originally gold but I painted, stamped, and inked over it.

As I was working on my journal, I made notes as to what I wanted to write in it for each day. After a couple days I started to worry a bit about how much I really had to write about. Let’s see, I woke up, exercised, went to work, came home, made dinner, did some laundry…exciting stuff!

Then one night as I left work I caught a glimpse of the full moon – it was huge and orange and looked so cool. And it occurred to me that I could write that in my calendar journal. The journaling doesn’t necessarily have to record what I did that day; it could be a thought, an observation or impression, song lyrics, or whatever I feel like writing.

I was relieved, because otherwise I might have a lot of blank squares in my journal!

And I’ve started the February page. Hopefully it will be done before February starts!

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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Finally, after many years of putting it off, I have picked up a soldering iron and melted some solder. I’ve been working on some mini collages to sandwich between glass, but I’ve been itchy to just try it out already. So I decided to do some practice pieces with microscope slides. And good thing. Because it’s a lot harder to do than I had anticipated.

My first attempt is a mess (top). Blobs of solder everywhere! My second attempt (bottom) is better, but still needs a lot of work.

poor microscope slides!

I can do the tinning ok, but adding a bead of solder is not going so well. Neither is adding a jump ring. On my first attempt the jump rings kept falling sideways! I’m sure with more practice though I’ll get the hang of it.

making it mine.
Somerset Studio has a new feature called Make It Your Own, by Michelle Ward. I love this idea, and am excited to see what topics Ms Ward covers.

In the inaugural article she discusses some differences between art and craft. I enjoyed her take on it: “We have heard the question asked, “What is the difference between art and craft?” I think one answer might be that when you make it your own, it’s art. When you follow directions, as you would a recipe or copy a project from a magazine, then that is craft. Personalizing, interpreting, and then processing through your own filters is art.” (Somerset Studio, July/August).

I think it makes perfect sense to put your spin on things – as Ms Ward said, it’s perfectly fine to use purchased embellishments or papers in your work. But paint them, stamp them, cut them, add glitter glue, scuff them – make it look like they’ve been through your hands. I can’t wait to start applying this principal more often in my own work.

Thanks for visiting!

xoDawne

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delicious red cake.
A few months back I bought a whoopie pie pan from Wegman’s. This weekend I decided to try it out. I had some buttermilk left from blueberry muffins I made last weekend (they were ok – need to tweak the recipe a bit). So I decided to make red velvet whoopie pies in an effort to not throw away quite so much buttermilk (why does buttermilk only come in quart size? I only need a cup or two!)

I have a Paula Deen red velvet cupcake recipe that I have made several times, and it always comes out delicious – very moist and flavorful. For the filling I cheated and simply used store-bought vanilla frosting.

And here they are….

red velvet whoopie pies

They look kind of brown in this photo, but I can assure you they are quite red.

Yum!

inspiring red flowers.
Somewhat recently I read the January/February 2011 issue of Somerset Studio, and was particularly taken with an article by E’Layne Koenigsberg, From Intuition to Fruition (as a whole I have been feeling so inspired lately by all of the various Stampington magazines I’ve been reading).

poppies

She writes about how, rather than her usual approach to creating art as one of having a finished product in mind, she approached her project intuitively, opening herself to ideas and inspiration and seeing what happened. I too approach my art thinking that I must have a perfect finished item when I am done. Partly this is due to limited time, and partly to my uptight perfectionist tendencies.

I would love to work in a more intuitive manner, instead of worrying about whether my project will turn out or not. As Marc Chagall said, “If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing.” There’s a certain trusting of one’s artistic talent and creativity that must come into play in order to work intuitively. I’d really like to tap into that!

housecleaning.
The past week I’ve been making some changes & updates to my blog. New banner, I added a background (ok, it’s just plain lavender. My digital art skills are not adequate for anything fancy, and while I love the beautiful fancy backgrounds on other blogs, sometimes I feel they are distracting. So for now, it’s plain lavender.) I’ve added some more artists to my blogroll, and some shops to my shoproll.

But with the end of June is the end of the quarter, and that means it’s time for me to come up with my goals for the 3rd quarter. (I work in the financial industry, so dividing the year into quarters is second nature). And one of those goals is absolutely going to be learning how to solder. Wish me luck!

Thanks for stopping by!

xoDawne

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