Saturday, December 29, 2012

I leaped...

I usually avoid entering into "contests" or such as I NEVER win. And, usually, it requires so many steps, emails, etc., that I don't find it worth the time or effort.

But, someone must have conked me over the head because I got the wild hair to try out for the Spellbinder's Explore Beyond contest.

To make a long story short, I leaped.....

.....but I didn't win.  Didn't even get one of the honorable mentions.

And really, while I will admit to disappointment, I knew as soon as I saw the two finalist's picked for the mixed media category, that they would be the project's chosen to move on to the finals.  Having been lucky to attend CHA (the Craft and Hobby Association showcase of all the latest and greatest crafting goodies in every medium imaginable) the last couple of years, I could see what trends were starting to take place and what "looks" companies were being drawn to in presenting their products.  Those two finalist products were perfect in that area!!

So, why didn't I create the "look" I thought the company was looking for?

Here are my rambling, creative thoughts that I am going to share with you in regards to what I created.

My creative Mojo has been missing for MONTHS.  I have had ideas, but no energy or desire to create them.  I have been feeling overwhelmed with trying to create what I think others want to see.  I have been overwhelmed with the over abundance of  supplies that I have accumulated over the years, yet the pressure of using NEW product to gain looks was stifling. I did not want to purchase new product just to impress. 

 I have been trying to find or rediscover a medium that I can express myself in a creative manner that excites me.   I took the title of the contest to heart.  Explore Beyond. I wanted to be inspired and let the journey complete the project. I did not want to create the  project for the journey.  I decided that if I was going to leap and try for this contest, then I had to create what came from the heart.  I could not allow the creativity to be what I thought the judge's expectations were.  

This first project that I made (yes, I ended up finishing two!) was my way of expressing the above thoughts.  The all white aspect symbolized the "expected".  Though lovely in itself, it is what everything else is. The bright blue butterfly symbolizes what I hope to accomplish. Breaking away from the "expected" and not being afraid to be ME.  

I will admit to one "fatal" mistake in submitting this canvas.  I was beyond rushed with the holiday season and  really, had no business taking the time to make this.  I was having a HORRIBLE time in photographing this piece with the all white and the metallic butterfly.  So I settled on the  photograph that I submitted.  It wasn't any of these photos, which I just re photographed.  It was against a white background, too much natural sunlight and a bit washed out.  Not that it would have made a difference, but the lesson learned was, if you are going to take the time to do something, DO IT RIGHT.  

Even though this canvas didn't connect with the judges, I REALLY like it.  I like what it symbolizes to me.  And once I gain the energy and courage to face the mess my office/creative space has suffered, I will find a spot on the wall for it, to remind me of my ultimate goals in creating.

Later this week, I'll share the second project that I created for this contest.  TOTALLY different look,LOL!!

'Till next time.....remember to ENJOY the creativity!!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Joy

It's raining here in Southern California.  No snowflakes falling for Christmas Eve.  While I'd like just a light dusting of the white stuff just for today and tomorrow, I'm perfectly satisfied without the cold temps and dealing with the white fluff otherwise!!

So, today I'm sharing a very simple wish of Christmas Joy.  However you celebrate this season, I wish you Joy.

Basic details:  Base Gina K's Pure Luxury White.  DP:  BoBunny.  Spellbinder's Create a Flake One.  Metal:  Ten Second Studios.  Sentiment:  stickers from my stash.  

Until next time..............

Monday, December 17, 2012

Peace and Joy

I will admit that I've debated with myself over the last couple of days as to whether or not to post cards/projects right now.  It seems rather trivial in light of the horrible current events.

One side argues that a moment of silence or a profound, heartfelt post is more appropriate.

The other side argues that a moment of "normalcy" is what is needed for broken hearts and souls.

I am still stuck in the middle, unable to step over the line to either side.  So, I am going to just post the card.  And hope that the sentiment will be a moment of hope.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Chocolate Rose

OOOOO!! I'm doing good!  I have managed to get another card done today before the month has past, LOL!!

Seriously, I do consider this an accomplishment, considering my incredibly overbooked calendar!!

I needed to make a dear friend a birthday card.  I had an inspiration piece in my mind and thought I had mapped out exactly how the card was going to look.

Does anyone else experience the artistic curve ball of having your perfectly thought out idea totally fail? I actually experience this creative detour more often than not. And while I usually don't mind this creative detour, I happened to have just a teeny tiny time crunch staring me in the face.

As in I was down to a total of about 45 minutes to come up with Plan B, get into the shower, get somewhat presentable and head out the door.

I stuck with my color inspiration and desire to use metal.  I had to forgo the original focal point idea (had to do with various swirls and such) and went with Plan B to go to my basic card layout of late with a flower focal point.  

Sigh.  Sometimes you just have to stick with the tried and true!

Basic details:  Metal is from TenSecond Studios in Dark Chocolate and Peacock.  I cut a strip of the Peacock and scored with my Scor-Buddy.  Adhered to the card with Scor-tape.  The rose was die cut with Donna Salazar's/Spellbinders Create a Rose.  Embossed with Spellbinder's M-bossabilities Ornamental Iron.  Sanded off the raised portion to expose the aluminium.  The same steps that can be see in this Black Metal Rose post.    The swirls and leaves were die cut from more of the Dark Chocolate Metal using Spellbinder's Doodle Parts and the leaves from the Create a Rose set.  The rose was adhered together with a hot glue gun for time's sake.   The sentiment stamped and I called her "good enough"!

This is the last week of school before the Christmas break.  I have about a million things that need to be completed but am hoping to get at least a half dozen completed, LOL!! 

'Till then................

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Black Metal Rose

Howdy Strangers!! Oh wait!  It's me that has been missing for a while!!

 I was all set to apologize for my absence, but then I realized that I would be apologizing for the fact that I have been busy with family happenings that have trumped creating.

And to be honest, I'm working on NOT feeling guilty or feel that I need to apologize for that.  I sooo admire those who are busy with family, jobs and life happenings, yet are still able to create several times a week.

Nope.  That's not me.

But!  You didn't drop by to hear me ramble about my weird guilt trips!

This week the high school boys are gearing up to ask out dates for the Winter Banquet.  Oldest kiddo is going to ask a classmate who shares his preference for 80's rock and metal music.  When he asked other friends to find out her favorite flower, she replied she likes "black roses.  A single black rose".  

Now, I don't know if she was being silly, but a black rose she will be getting!!

A black metal rose, that is.  

I have made roses out of metal before, using die cuts.  But I wanted a larger rose than what my available dies  were going to allow me to make.  I went online and found this template that I felt would work perfectly.  

I printed off the template onto regular copy paper.  I then traced  the templates with a Teflon refiner (you can use a stylus also) onto the metal by layering a thin mat, the metal and copy paper.

After tracing and cutting out the different pieces, I ran each layer through my Big Shot with Spellbinders M-Bossabilities Ornamental Iron.  

I then used a burnishing block to sand off the raised portions to expose the silver aluminium.

Usually, when making roses, you glue the petals of the larger layers into a cone shape.  Since I was wanting to adhere the rose onto a "stem" (a bamboo skewer wrapped in more of the black metal), I skipped that step. Using a hot glue gun, **Warning** Hot glue on metal gets HOT!  Be careful when handling!! I built up from the center out, wrapping and gluing each layer as I went.  Sorry there are no pictures of this step.  My hands were a tad bit occupied trying to maneuver the metal over the hot glue without leaving too much skin!! 

I wish you could see the texture and layers better!! Trying to photograph shiny metal at night is a bit beyond my photography skills at this time! LOL!!  The layers and texture add an elegance, yet still edgy, look to this "black rose".  

Basic supplies:  Rose Template from  Metal, mat, burnishing block (sanding block) and Teflon refiner:   Ten Second Studios Rock Star Black.  Embossing folders:  Spellbinders M-bossabilities Ornamental Iron and Cuttlebug Swiss dots.  

Well, that's it for me today!  I need to clean up this mess and start thinking about a couple of other projects that I would like to get done by this weekend!  

'Till then.....