Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Chit Chat

Can't believe it is already Wednesday. Enjoyed my Monday holiday immensely. Made a visit to my old art buddy in Corsicana and enjoyed it so much. I took all my new art and introduced her to altered books. We had a fun "show and tell" session.

Not sure why I'm sharing this little bit of ground cover in my garden. Other than to remind me that there is work to do out there. Do you see the leaves? Well they are OK with me. There are really not many of those but the nut grass and that other weed which sort of blends in must go.

At this moment in my life, I'm just not motivated to go out there as I have in the past. I want a new gardener. This one has a new "altered book" passion.

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Book of Dreams.......Metal

My Book of Dreams page for week 5 is complete. I really had fun with this; although, this was way outside my comfort zone. Tim helped plan the page and suggested that I use leather which really looks great on the page with all the metal. Various metals that I used: copper, eyelets, brads, copper wire, copper foil and various gold paint and ink.
I almost forgot about the window screen wire that I used for the pocket. My motto is use what you've got on hand. So I happen to have some old window screens down at the barn and that is what I used. It was a little too stiff to make the pocket that I first planned. But this turned out great. So......If you don't have any mesh.....Just dream out the window. Anything can be "altered".
The copper foil doesn't show well in the photo but it is the right and bottom border around the photo that goes off the top of the page and across the spread landing under the bottom tag. Using a little embossing tool, I rolled a design onto the copper foil and then inked it. It doesn't show real well but good enough. Notice the initials, "T.J." along the bottom of the page. This was done with the rubber stamp that Tim carved and is carving in the photo.

Front of Tags

Back of Tags

The middle Tag front says, "Hands of a dreamer". The back says, "It takes one to know one and I know Timothy is a dreamer. His dreams will take him far."
I dream for you
I dream you can dream
I dream you will dream

Copper Rubbings

My friend (who has more toys than I do) gave me a piece of copper foil and a little tool package. I was showing Timothy how to make an image on the copper by rubbing it with something under the copper. He came up with the plan to use coins and this is the result. After getting the impression I brushed black India Ink over the copper and polished it after the ink dried. I did seal with a coat of Mod Podge.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Friday Evening at my House

Went chasing a butterfly again this evening. It was too shy and elusive. I did stop to get a picture of this beautiful rambling rose, Mermaid. Very thorny but beautiful creamy yellow.

And Tim took me over to the pasture on the 4-wheeler to get a pic of a beautiful sunflower that reseeded from last year. That was after we went to the barn to see the baby chicks and get a piece of screen wire for the Book of Dreams "metal" page. Tim is helping me with that design.
We picked parsley and a sweet banana pepper from the garden to go with supper. Sorry, top secret recipe, can't be shared. All I can say is that they all love it and it is quick for Friday night when I want to get to the ART that is screaming in my head....Oh, did I say screaming, I meant dreaming.

Nifty Book to Alter

Look at this kool, nifty, great, little book I found at the thrift store just now. The little box on the cover at the upper right corner is a "window". The inside is so colorful and perfect for altering. Somebody is going to get this jewel (altered by you-know-who) for Christmas. I wonder who.

Thursday, May 25, 2006


This just leaves me speechless....................................

Tim's Rubber Stamp

Here is Tim. I'm working on another stamp and shared a little block of rubber with him. He had his initial designed and ready to carve in about 2 minutes. I don't know how he did it but he figured out how to transfer the design onto the rubber. You know, whatever your design is, it will be backwards when you use the stamp. I couldn't figure out how to transfer my sketch to the rubber, so I just did a freehand drawing onto the rubber while looking at my sketch. Tim knew of my dilemma from the night before and...well I don't know how he did that. I think he did his sketch with a lead pencil and then rubbed it onto the rubber and...wala...just perfectly backwards. He's a doozy and says he is going to be a designer when he grows up. He plans to design toys for one thing.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Notes to Self.....Metal

OK, this week the BOD assignment is to use Metal on a page. I haven't done that so this again will be a new adventure. It is so frustrating to sit here at my desk and think about what I will do and can't just go do it. This is when the stuff is swirling in my mind. So I will make my self some notes:
(1) Retrieve the old keys that I ran across in a jewelry box just last weekend. I put them back in the box even thou I knew they would not unlock anything I they will unlock creativity...maybe.
(2) Hang onto the two little wires that I pulled out of a piece of wired ribbon Monday night. I knew there would be some use for it even thou I have a whole spool of wire that is maybe a little different gauge.
(3) Gather up the little silver gum wrappers off the dining table that Tim saved for me at my request. I didn't know why at the time......stop here and chew a piece of gum that a rep just left.......but they might be classified at "metal".
(4) Check to see if the roll of foil tape that son gave me for one of his projects is what Artsymama is referring to in the tutorial. In any case, I'm sure it will work.
(5) Gather up all the various gold doing stuff with gold paint.
(6) I don't have any liver of sulfur but I do have some sort of chemical that is used to patina copper foil.....stained glass projects.......
(7) Yes copper foil. That will work.
(8) Just happen to have borrowed copy of Claudine Hellmuth's Collage Discovery Workshop...and it is here at the office. I will study that later today. (My friend that I mailed the jar of is her copy and she knew I would need it)
(9) Look through Big Mama's button box for old metal buttons. Memory is telling me there are some there.
(10) Try the petroluem jelly trick with my new rubber stamp.
(11) Continue dreaming for Karen Michel's The Complete Guide to Altered Imagery. That will be my next purchase.
(12) Look in the box of mini picture frames. Might be a metal one. Might work ???
(13) Look again in the top right drawer for anything metal...add it to the stuff.
(14) Get drimmel tool out and try drilling little hole in the little metal words that recently purchased at Wally's world. This is the page for them.

Now, when I go home and drag all of this out, I will be ready to create a dream page. In the meantime, I will just day dream about it here.

Jar in the Mail

My friend is getting this in the mail today. Thank you friend. Have fun with these little tidbits from me to you.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Stamp Finished

I will be doing more of these. I think it turned out well. Now, what will I use it on. Wait and see.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Rubber Stamp

Here's what I'm doing tonight. This is fun. My last trip to the big city I bought a carving block. I'm just now getting around to trying it. Will show the results tomorrow. I wasn't expecting the rubber to be so soft.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Book of Dreams...Windows, Doors & Niches

Here are my pages for this weeks BOD assignment. I decided to do a window after looking at Lilli's BOD pages 21-24 where she made a small window that you looked through from both sides.

One of the coolest things about this whole fun project is the inspiration gained from looking at what everyone else is doing. It's like brainstorming via the worldwide net. My window is nothing like Lilli's but that's where the spark of inspiration that I latched onto came from.

I use all of my own images. The window is a photograph of a window that I did. ( I may share more of that some other day). I altered it so I could print on transparency. I printed mirror images so I could put the printed sides together to protect them.

I played all day today and most of last evening on these pages. And what fun I did have. It took a lot of planning for the pages to work the way I envisioned and as always I started before I really knew what the finished page would look like. I am very pleased with the pages. I spend way too much time creating each page but I enjoy every moment. Sure need to get out and work in my flower gardens but I will just enjoy the images of them used on this page. I wish my photographs were better with better color and no glare. Oh well.

I am really getting into layering now and that is just one of many things that I have learned with this art dream.

Another thing I have learned: I can make time for art.

Beautiful Dream Granddaughter Ready for the Prom

(altered by her grandmother)

I See Myself

Dreaming, Wishing, Loving, Smiling, Believing, and Flying

(click on all pictures to enlarge)

I dream for you

Poofy dresses

Angel wings

A crown for queens

I dream you can dream

I dream you will dream

Friday, May 19, 2006

Book of Dreams......Images

Finally, I finished my Images page. As you can see from earlier post, I had trouble transferring with transparency. So I decided to use the transparency on the page because I like the look so much. I went back to the program I use for images and layered a page with the sheet music, then the edited photos, then layered the text in white so it would be clear. I printed the transparency and attached it to the page with glue dots around the edge. The page has a layer of watercolor crayons and just under the images there is a layer of white acrylic. I'm very happy with the page spread. I would say this spread has Tags, Layers, and Images. That ArtsyMama is so clever to take us down this road to altering books. So fun!

click on pictures to enlarge
Dream for Miracles Tags Front and Back

OK, that's it. I have Windows, Doors, and Niches swirling in my head. I should have time this weekend to play with that. Here's day dreaming you do too.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Transparency Progress

click on picture to enlarge

Just so excited that I have almost conquered the transparency issue. I am not going to transfer the image but instead, use the transparency. Just had an issue with how to attach it to the page. I know I should have considered that little "how to" first but as usual I do things backwards.

If you haven't seen Gudrun's page that she posted May 16th for her book of dreams. You must. She used transparencies and her page spread is just absolutely beautiful. She also helped me with the "how to" problem and I am anxious to get home and finish my page. Thank you Gudrun for answering my query.

I'm sure I will post it tomorrow. In the meantime, here's a couple of tags for the page.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

My Work Area for Art

This is what happens to my play space when I'm working on a page. What a mess. I seem to drag everything out and it starts closing in on me and then I have to stop and put everything up before I can create another page. I have another table to work on but it is full too. If I take time to clean up then there is no time for Art. Must have time for art. It too feeds my soul.

Now I'm going home to play but this is what is waiting for me.

BOD Images Not Ready

Book of Dreams assignment last Wednesday was "Images" and different ways of transferring images to our book of dreams. Coincidentally, I had "images" all planned for my next page spread. I had the images (some of them below) printed and a general plan of how I would use them on the pages. Had to rethink it all after getting the assignment.

I had been wanting to do some image transfers so I just thought I would adapt my plan for the page. I read up on transferring images with all the wonderful links ArtsyMama provided. Also, I just happen to have a borrowed copy of Somerset Workshop. It has a whole section of "Photo Transfers" by Olivia Thomas. I read and studied the section all the way to son's house for Mother's Day.

Here is the problem. I live in a small rural town and if "Wally's World" doesn't have the supplies needed, well, we wait for another trip to the big city. I was missing one thing in my well stocked studio for each of the transfer methods. So I waited.

Finally, made a trip to the big city and bought a box of Transparency Film. That was the method I wanted to try first. So I did. The image above was a trial. I didn't really like it but thought I would do better on real one. .....................Wrong!
It turned out even worse. I'm pretty sure the problem is that I am trying to transfer to a piece of paper that is not glued down yet in my book.

This is just another scan of the transparency laying over the sheet of music. I'm going to figure this challenge out and will post it when I do. In the meantime, I'm going to try some of the other methods. Sometimes, I just have to put it down. Wake up in the middle of the night......after solving it in My Dreams.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Mother's Day

My Beautiful Mother
(a long time ago)
Her Children
(a couple of years ago)

My Beautiful Kids and Theirs
(a couple of years ago too)Ash and Tim

(Easter this year)

Have a busy weekend planned so in honor of Mother's day I'm posting some of my favorite pics. Probably won't have time for art this weekend but hope to squeeze some in somehow.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Book of Dreams Title Page

Here is the title page again in it's unaltered state. I posted it on May 3rd but wanted to include here again for a closer comparison to the........................
click on pictures to enlarge
Altered Page

Lots of fun with this. I was challenged to leave all the original text and illustration showing because it is so cool. And one of ArtsyMama's suggestions was to try a "layer of glaze". Sometimes you never know what will spark inspiration. With this page, just at some exact moment, I looked at the little hexagonal tiles at the bottom of the page and it made me think of a puzzle. Don't ask me why. My brain just bounces that way sometimes. Going with it one step at a time, after tracing around puzzle pieces and adding the glaze, I found myself digging for little black and white pictures that would fit. My little "dream" says:

I dream for you all the puzzles that life brings.

I dream you can dream.

I dream you will dream.

That's just to say that I think solutions in life come from dreaming.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Book of Dreams...Layers

Inside front cover...
click on picture to enlarge
I have done a few layers and another pocket page. For the page on the right and the bookmark tag, I used a photo of one of my own garden spots. The text on the right was a stamp and it reads: "Dream of smile-filled mornings that last all day." Thank you Susan for the loan of this little stamp.

Bookmark Tag
I got this idea of putting a bookmark in the front pocket from Christi Snow over at Altered Ambitions.
Thanks Christi, very clever.
My bookmark reads......
"But I being poor, have only my dreams: I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams." I found this on the net and it was written by W.B. Yeats and Irish poet.
For the record, I love layers and pockets. I will be doing a lot of them.

Dream for Miracles
Here is our miracle baby, Ryan Michael. This was my first page for the "layering" challenge. I love the layers and even though I have done lots of scrapbook pages, layers did not come natural to me. I'm having so much fun and thanks to ArtsyMama, I'm learning so much.
I still plan a little journaling on this page and yes, Dreams Do Come True and Miracles Can Happen. I will feature that on my next page. It's swirling in my head and I'm just waiting for today's tutorial mission form ArtsyMama. Can't wait.

My Book Of Dreams Cover

Here is my altered book cover for ArtsyMama's fun project. As you can see the name of my book is Dream Kids and Kid Dreams. And that's what my book is about....lots of dreams and kids.

click on photo to enlarge

This week's assignment was "layers" and my cover does have lots of layers. I haven't photographed the page I did with layers yet; so, I will show that in another post. I scanned the cover but the page spread won't fit in the scanner.

Following Misty Mawn's wonderful technique that she shared in the current issue of Cloth Paper Scissors, I painted layers and transferred a page of music for the background. Then I layered all the family kids. It was fun searching through the boxes of photos for pics that showed hands in a way that I could cut out and use.

The cover may be a little too busy and I almost covered up all the wonderful background but I had so much fun doing it and am very pleased with it.

The butterfly wing on the little angel in the top left corner was a gift from the little angel's son. He found it Sunday while I was working on the page and knew I would love it for my book. He is the little angel with glasses on the second row right next to his mom who is a grown up angel now. Tim is also working on an altered book that I will share later.

Remember Old Peel and Stick Albums?

Remember these old peel and stick albums? My mission a couple of weekends ago was to remove and rescue all the photos. The album pages are so full of acid that many of the pictures are already damaged. I have about 40 years worth so it was a dreaded chore that has been on the back burner for a long long time. Glad to report that I have finished the removal. Now what?
Well.....being a miser, penny pincher, and hoarder of all good stuff with a promising second life, I thought surely these covers could be recycled in some way. Light bulb moment! I remembered the gutted book that was the inspiration for the Book Of Dreams project. So I gutted one and plan to use it for an art journal cover. Of course I will alter the cover and have one prepped already with gesso.

I also noticed that none of the metal binding spirals were tarnished so I'm thinking they can be recycled too. For something. They are nice soft bendable coil. Well, as usual with me, I get one chore finished and come up with several new projects. But they are fun fun projects. Now time is all I need.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Pocket Close Up

Just wanted to show a close up of the pocket. The hummingbird is done with vellum. I wanted the transparent layer and love it. Now after I do a little blog reading...I must get busy with my day job.

BOD Pocket Page # 1

Here is my first pocket page for week 1 of Book of Dreams. I have another in progress. It's not ready for show and tell yet. My tag says "a pocket full of" and then "Dreams" is on the pocket. The back of the tag say "Dreaming" and was done with gold embossing that doesn't show up very well and the collage layer says, "It will be an adventure". I have not finished altering the adjoining page. That is still swirling in my brain but this will give a "before" of the page and I will post again when altered.