Sunday, September 30, 2012

Artist Trading Cards (ATCs)

I got sidetracked from traditional card making this month, choosing instead to focus on something called Artist Trading Cards (or ATCs for short) -- mini art projects that artists and stampers trade among themselves.  I very recently joined a Yahoo! group that focuses on ATCs, and these are the trading cards I signed up to make during this month.

1) Theme:  MAN (to be followed in subsequent months with WOMAN and CHILD cards)

2) Theme:  Birthday RAK, or Random Act of Kindness, to one of the group members

3) Theme:  Artist's Choice - I titled this little beauty "Happiness Felt"

4) Theme: Winged Things

5) Theme:  Mystery Image - This month's Mystery Image was a set of stamped theater tickets.  I decided to make them into a "White Ticket Fence" with flowers behind it.

6) Theme:  Quote of the Month - The idea is to use a famous quote as the focal point for an ATC.  Being the  goofball I am, I decided to use one of my own quotes -- one of the funniest things I've said in a long time!  Well, maybe the quote isn't funny by itself, but the ATC commemorates an event that happened this month which GREATLY amused one of my friends.  See, I was taking some pills, and absently swallowed a little plastic flower along with them.  I couldn't believe it!  I got a good laugh at myself, and so did my friend.

I've signed up to make nine (9!) ATCs next month, and hope to also do some card making as well.  Looks like October will be a busy month for me!

Joyce Spear (a.k.a. StamperJoyce)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Custom Birthday Card and Quick Recovery Card

I was asked to make a personalized card for someone's daughter who is just turning nine this month.  I was instructed to use pinks and purples and come up with something girly with lots of shimmer and shine.  Here's what I settled on:

and inside:

I spritzed the front with several layers of pearl Smooch Spritz, so in real life it truly shimmers.  I created the sentiment and flowers in the oval on the front as well as the inside flower using Stampin' Up!'s My Digital Studio 2 (MDS2).  I love love love that stamped images can be colored, resized, and rotated; and I found so many other features in the newly released version that I can't wait to try!!  

This card will not, of course, fit in a regular envelope.  I have clear acetate boxes that are held closed with gold elastic cord, and I think this will help Riley understand her mother's intention to present her with a keepsake.  I do hope Riley likes it!


On another note, the husband of a dear friend of mine went through heart surgery recently, and I wanted to create a card to let both of them know they're on my mind.  The trick was to come up with something masculine, but not TOO masculine so that my friend would enjoy the card, too.  I decided to try my hand at papier tole, and created the medallion/flower on this card:

For those not familiar with papier tole, it involves layering increasingly smaller pieces using thin foam to create a multi-dimensional object.  I cheated and used a kit for my first attempt, but I did add another layer at the bottom to create contrast between the medallion and the background designer paper.  I sponged everything with Early Espresso ink to give it a somewhat vintage look.  The brads are antiqued, and the button is crisscrossed with linen thread.  The gorgeous ribbon is wonderfully textured and in person adds so much to the card.

The inside:

The ribbon on the main inside sentiment is held on with a small antiqued paperclip.  All the sentiments in this card were sized and printed in MDS2.

I just got a new order of Stampin' Up! goodies and am sorting through it all trying to decide what I want to use first.  Decisions, decisions!!

Joyce Spear (a.k.a. StamperJoyce)

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Wesley the Amorous Owl

I recently had lunch with a dear friend who told me a story about her daughter having had the opportunity to raise a baby owl to adulthood.  I got a chuckle when my friend told me how, when the owl matured -- never having had contact with other owls -- he would follow his natural instincts and affectionately rub himself against her in an attempt to mate.  The owl's name was Wesley, and so I took on the challenge of making a card featuring Wesley the Amorous Owl for my friend to send to her daughter.  I hope it brings a smile to her face!

In case you can't quite read it, the card front reads:  Wesley says...  Whooo-oo-oo loves you, baby?   Inside:  You turn me on!

Stampin' Up! supplies used in this project:  Baja Breeze, Island Indigo, Gumball Green, Raspberry Ripple, Primrose Petals, Chocolate Chip, Daffodil Delight, and Whisper White cardstock; Owl builder punch; Bird builder punch; self-adhesive Googly eyes; Dotted Scallop Ribbon Border punch; Heart to Heart punch; Word Window and Modern Label punches; corner rounder punch, and Stripes textured impressions (embossing) folder.

I got so "into" making this card that I ended up staying awake all night as the hours flew by -- and I paid dearly for it today to the tune of zero productivity.  My hope is to crawl into bed within the hour and wake up refreshed and ready to stamp all day tomorrow!

Joyce (a.k.a. StamperJoyce)

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Last Cards of August

I had a rather productive last week of August, with seven cards to show for my efforts.  Good thing I took pictures right away, too, since the cards have been snatched from my inky fingers with a loud HURRAH!  already -- which couldn't make me happier!  I resolved to cut my time on Facebook games to 30 minutes or less a day effective this weekend, which leaves me with lots more time to create -- and it seems this was a good decision given the demand for my artwork.  Turns out the creative time is also very good for the soul, as I've been happier than ever this last week as I've been gradually cutting down the Facebook hours!

I strayed a bit from the beaten path with this batch of cards by using non-Stampin' Up! designer series paper and tools along with SU! cardstock, inks, stamps, and embellishments.  I have a standing request for sympathy and anniversary cards, so I started out with some of those.  (Remember, you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.)

Card 1:

Card 2:

Cards 3 and 4:  I'm particularly proud of the hearts on these anniversary cards.  I found a flourish in one of my embossing folder's design that fit perfectly into the area of the hearts, and then I used a sponge with some ink to make the embossing more pronounced.

Card 5:  I've been wanting to use this Not So Seriously stamp set from Stampin' Up! for forever, and finally got to it this week.  I think the paper piecing of the dress is fun!  The buttons were done with the Sweet Buttons embosslit from SU!, and isn't the stitched satin ribbon dreamy?

Card 6:  This quick card was created with a specific friend in mind (whom I affectionately call my Piglet), but since the card got snagged so quickly, guess I'll be making another one!

Card 7:  I found the indigo button below on the seat of my car, so I'm guessing it came off a purse or article of clothing belonging to one of my passengers.  I've been shifting it around in my apartment for months, and this week it finally cried out to be used as a center of a Mixed Bunch flower.

Stampin' Up! colors used on the above cards include Chocolate Chip, Island Indigo, Melon Mambo, Daffodil Delight, Gumball Green, and Whisper White.  If you have any questions or comments about these cards, please leave a comment and I'll respond as soon as I see it.

Coming up next:  I have requests for a card featuring an amorous owl named Wesley and a frilly card for a special young lady's birthday.  I hope the muse is kind to me this week, as I also have some more non-SU! product I want to play with before my September Stampin' Up! order comes in.  We'll see how it goes...

Stampin' Smiles,
Joyce Spear (a.k.a. StamperJoyce)