Thursday, January 30, 2014

Growth and Challenges

Hey there! It's time again for another Mix-Ability challenge over on Splitcoast, and I'm hosting this week! Here's a close-up detail:

This week we are all about the LAYERS! I love layers, almost as much as I love bacon!

I started with a little paint, and scraps of paper and bits of collage left over from previous projects. Then I added texture paste through stencils to get some texture. I colored the texture paste with Dylusions spray - using a small paintbrush to apply it just to the areas I wanted to accent.

I added bits of washi tape, some gold modeling cream, a little more bits of acrylic paint, some rubbed on with my finger, some put through a stencil. I added a photo of myself, and taped the edges with washi, added more texture paste over the edges to embed the photo into the background, added 2 word stickers. I die cut the letters and the banners (Tim Holtz - Sizzix), glued them down and accented them with my graphite pencil.

Once I was happy with it, I went around the edges with Distress Stains, added more shading with graphite, and some white accents. I used a gel Souffle pen (Sakura) for the white, but you can use a liquid paper corrector pen, too. Once I get it all done, I coat everything with Mod Podge to seal it all up.

This is a project in progress photo for another page I did not long ago.

You can see the raw texture paste through stencil in the corners, bits of paper, paint, stamped images and book text. I follow the same process, generally, just putting things on the page until I'm pleased with the effect.

And this is the final photo of that same project:

Can you pick out the details? The thing that pulls it all together, for me, is the shading. Don't forget to go around the edges of your pages - that really frames the page!

Here's another in-progress picture:

And this is where I'm at with that page. Not done yet! I still have a lot more layering to do, and I need to get some more items to pull the whole thing together. I was working on this at the hospital today, and the social activities director saw it. She wants me to come teach and play with her patients in the rehabilitation unit.

I know these last 2 in particular look odd - I took the in-progress picture with my phone camera, and the final with my Canon SLR, so the color and detail quality aren't the same. I think you can pick out bits and see where the layers have been added and changed as I went. It's very obvious how important shading is between these last 2 photos.

In case you can't read it, it says, "One day this pain will make sense to you." Caring for an elderly parent with ICU psychosis is very painful indeed, and I need to remind myself that while I'm going through a dark place right now, God can see beyond it. I just have to trust Him, and know that the sun will shine again.

I really wanted to give you a video, but my Dad had surgery and there have been complications, so I've been at the hospital all day every day. So, let me be in your debt and 'owe' you a video, ok? I love to share! Is there a product or technique you really would like to see me demonstrate? Leave a comment below!

Thanks so very much for stopping by, and play along! I want to see what you do with my challenge!


Friday, January 10, 2014

Adversity is Good

Hello there friends and neighbors! I'm back with another mixed media piece for you to see. Did you know there's a weekly challenge in mixed media on Splitcoast Stampers? Yep, every Friday we bring you something new to play along with.

I find this statement to be very true. In fact, my Dad struck up a conversation with our waitress today about this subject. I've done a lot of things the hard way, but I know that choosing those harder paths resulted in me being ready for the next thing in life. Dad's quote today that really stuck with me was, "When you get tired of losing, you either get better or quit. You can't get better unless you pick someone more skilled than you to go up against."

Some days, that more skilled person is me. Truth. Some days I just don't bring my 'A' game, and I struggle against myself. Some people say this is me getting in the way of myself. It's hard. It's a challenge to even realize you're in your own way. And then, it's really hard to sit yourself down and lecture. But I'll tell you a secret - it's worth it. It really is. When you reach that point of recognizing the obstacle, and you commit yourself to moving past, you soar. It's like finding your wings but realizing they were there all along.

So struggle. Do you know that baby chicks will die if you open their shell for them? Truth. They need to struggle to get the blood pumping and get their lungs working on the transition from embryo to air-breather. It's hard to watch your kids do it, too. But they have to. You can't do it for them and expect them to be prepared later. Just a little nugget. Something to think on.

Check out the challenge on Splitcoast, and struggle with it a little. Then, if you're up for a bigger challenge, join me and a bunch of 'friends' as we transform our lives using the Daniel Plan. Here's a linkie-loo for more info. Get started!

Ta for now,


Details: Tons of layers, acrylic paint, modeling paste, gesso, old book text, grunge paper, die cuts, Copic markers, miscellaneous colored and graphite pencils, several stencils, Dylusions sprays (love!), Distress Ink, pan pastels (double love!), gold modeling cream, a couple more stencils, a few more layers, and a drop of imagination. Thank you for visiting - please leave a comment if you need further information!