Wednesday, November 14, 2012

And Now For Something Completely Different

I recently took a short break from paper crafting and spent some time at Color Me Mine, a ceramics painting studio near where I live -- and this is my new soup and cereal bowl! A touch of groovy, a bit of goofy, and a whole lot of sunshine (because the yellow is so bright) add up to a cheery dish!

I basically painted the outside bright yellow and the inside purple, then randomly stamped and sponged shapes all over to create a retro pattern. I had no idea how it would turn out, but I'm happy with the result. It definitely has that not-done-by-a-professional look, but that's okay.

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

I am now in the process of cleaning up my work area (well, actually, the whole room) after the ATC frenzy of last month. I hope to get that done no later than this weekend so that I can roll up my sleeves and start working on holiday cards!

Joyce Spear (a.k.a. StamperJoyce)

Friday, November 9, 2012

October's Artist Trading Cards

October was a busy month for me, creatively speaking.  I made over 30 ATCs!  This post is a recap of what I put together.

Naturally, I made some Halloween-themed cards, most of them with silly googly eyes.  I just love that Stampin' Up! offers a self-adhesive version of these things, which makes them so much easier to work with.  I started out making some RAKs (Random Acts of Kindness) for members of the ATC group I belong to:

These RAKs are all centered around tags made from SU!'s Ghoulish Googlies Designer Printed Kit, the Googly Ghouls stamp set, and include paper from the Howlstooth and Scaringbone designer series paper..

I used similar materials for a "Winner Takes All" Halloween-themed card:

My favorite Halloween ATC this year was for the theme "Owl-oween":

Next I worked on some "mystery image" cards.  One of the group members sends out a certain image or images, all the same, to each participating member, and then our mission is to create an ATC around it.  This month's image was a VW Beetle car, and I had lots of fun going 60s retro on my cards:

The backgrounds were created with metallic and shimmer watercolors.  On top of that were loosely collaged items from the 1960s -- tie-dye t-shirts, peace signs, rainbows, groovy flowers, etc.  I found a hippy chick that fit perfectly inside the car and fussy-cutted her.  The car is popped up on Stampin' Dimensionals.  The word "groovy" was done with a label maker.

Next up I made an ATC with a "Fall Foliage" scene, and liked it so much that I created some similar RAKs as well.

The leaves were cut and embossed from scraps of autumn-hued card stock using a Spellbinders die, then layered on a background from Stampin' Up!'s Orchard Harvest designer series paper.  Next I put a thick coat of Mod Podge, and while it was still wet sprinkled in some copper glitter.  The RAKs are on a slightly different background paper, and I left the words off:

The next theme I tackled was Quote of the Month.  Here are the quotes I picked out:

The colorful backgrounds were made using Gelatos, which I applied randomly to embossed card stock and then blended using my fingers, 

These last two were blended with water.  Quite a difference!

My final ATCs for October were one-of-a-kinds.  The theme on this first one was "Coffee, Tea, or Cocoa."  (And no, her feet are not backwards -- those are shadows!)  The red looks blotchier than it really is because I painted over it with Crystal Effects (clear laquer), and my scanner doesn't seem to like it.

The theme for this card is "Woman."  I took it a bit further and named it, "I am Woman, Hear Me Roar."  This coffee cup is also painted with Crystal Effects.

As you might guess, the theme for this last one is "Sunflower."  The scan didn't turn out too well because my scanner doesn't like the antique gold glimmer mist I sprayed on the flowers -- but it's really cool in person.

I don't think I'll be making nearly as many ATCs this month as I did during October, primarily because I want to roll up my sleeves and get busy with my holiday cards.  I rarely buy new winter holiday/Christmas stamps because their window of use is so limited and I already have more than I'll use in the next decade.  Nevertheless, Stampin' Up! had some amazing sets this year that I just HAD to have, so prepare to have your socks knocked off when I start posting my new creations!

Thanks for looking!

Joyce Spear (a.k.a. StamperJoyce)

Friday, October 12, 2012

Pocket Silhouettes

I recently did a batch of cards using Stampin' Up!'s (retired) Pocket Silhouettes stamp set and Eyelet Border punch.  I used several different sentiments, mostly from Teeny Tiny Wishes, to create cards that can be used for a variety of purposes.

I started out using Real Red, then decided to try the card in Melon Mambo and Cherry Cobbler as well.  I think all the colors work great!

I have a lot of ATCs due this month, so I need to switch gears this weekend to see if I can make a dent in my To Do list!

Joyce Spear (a.k.a. Stamper Joyce)

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)