Thursday, July 16, 2015

Computer Nightmare

When I saw the date of my last post I almost fainted.  OMG...6 weeks ago?! Are you kidding???

Ok, it is summer so it is logical I would have been on vacation....or outside basking in the sun and garden....maybe enjoying the gorgeous Chicago summertime.

Unfortunately, that wasn't exactly the case.

Beside the fact Chicagoland seems to be stuck in springtime with nonstop rain and relatively cool temps more resembling northern Wisconsin or Michigan, I've actually spent the past 6 weeks in computer purgatory.  Actually...computer, internet, wifi, power failures and a remodel that took 8 weeks instead of the original 1 week promised.

Unfortunately, I'm still not done with the computer issues.  My PC is failing.  I'm going to go Mac...not just because of all the nonsense I've had to endure with never ending and often incomplete updates or the terrible runaround HP gave me so they wouldn't have to honor the warranty....but because this is finally the logical junction in time where I can make the leap.  All the peripherals need to be updated anyway....I will have to go Adobe CC....and all my other software will soon become obsolete, as well as connectors, plugs, cables and other items that kept me chained to PC when my last PC failed almost 4 years ago.

So....bear with me, as we try to get my PC to remain stable long enough to get data transferred to a new iMac....and I try to learn a new platform and all new programs/versions without my poor head exploding!

Next week is Paper Arts Show in Schaumburg....I'll try to report on what I saw.  Dependent, of course, on my PC.


Monday, June 8, 2015

Creative Chaos......or Creative THINKING?!



Why, oh why have I always moved through any living space like a creative whirlwind?  There never seems to be a clean, uncluttered and neatly arranged surface ANYWHERE I live. And, trust me, if you can find one, it is probably because I am just physically unable to reach it!  Neat and perfectly organized surfaces last about...oh, maybe 2 minutes.  Then something gets tossed into the perfection and it all gets turned right back into chaos.  

The funny thing is this is a frequent topic among my creative friends.  We even share photos of our workspaces to see whose space is the "worst".  By this I mean the way OTHER people perceive it...as if an uncluttered, tidy space has higher perceived value with the rest of the world than a space filled with all sorts of interesting and often unrelated objects.  

I often wonder if those who are tidy are just plain boring....  Maybe those of us with spaces that look like a craft explosion took place do so with actual intent.  It seems that way...as if creativity cannot happen as well in a boring space.

If that theory is true, what is the REAL purpose of  what I refer to as "creative chaos"?  Science and psychologists wish they knew.  Unfortunately, it is probably beyond the logical mind's reach.  However, highly creative people...artists..designers, decorators and the like know the answer. 

Creative chaos is actual thinking in motion.  In the midst of what was perceived by my mathematically precision-driven mother as a total MESS, there are pattern, color and size relationships...the stuff ART is made of.  "Creatives" see color palettes and combinations brilliantly decided by random placement of objects tossed next to or on top of each other. A creatively chaotic room is filled with scale relationships, as well as ones of color value, contrast and texture.  Inspiration is everywhere.  In a single feather...or in a heap of fibers carelessly tossed over a pile of left-over bits and pieces from previous projects.  It is how I see the world... and how most of my creative friends see it, too.  

Yep, we are weird.  We see things differently.  We don't see the mess as chaos.  We see it as possibilities. 

Monday, May 25, 2015

Blog Hopping

And now for some FUN...combining texture and sparkle with awesome products from Stampendous and Linnie Blooms!



Linnie Blooms and Stampendous have paired up for a BLOG HOP this week!

Since I'm part of the Linnie Blooms Design Team, I came up with a pretty cool project that combines products from both companies.  Stampendous is all about stamping...Linnie Blooms is all about canvas.  Add in a few extra coloring products (Pan Pastels from Colorfin, ink from Clearsnap),and embellishment from Toner Plastic (Fun Wire)....glue (Beacon Adhesives) to hold it all together....and here we have it.....



LOVE GRAPES Note Card
By Gail Green


Materials you will need:

Stampendous:      Fran’s Jumbo Handle
                               Fran’s Encrusted Jewel Kit (Purple)
                               Cling Rubber Stamps: Jumbo Grapes
                               Clear Stamps: Life Words

Linnie Blooms:     Canvas Fall Leaves
                               Shabby Trim (Green)

Clearsnap Holdings, Inc:
      Top Boss® Watermark Ink            
      Colorbox® Archival® Inkpad (Black)

Colorfin/Pan Pastel:          
                              Sofft Applicator Handle & Heads Set
                              Sofft Art Sponge
                              Artists Painting Pastels (Magenta Shade, Violet Extra Dark, Titanium White)

Beacon Adhesives:
     Gem-tac® Permanent Glue
                              Zip Dry® Paper Glue
                              Fabri-tac ® Permanent Adhesive

Toner Plastics:    22 Gauge Fun Wire (Icy Silver)

Cardstock:           10” x 6.5” black cardstock folded and scored to form a 5 x 6.5” card
                              4-1/4” x 6” black cardstock
                              Magenta cardstock scrap

Miscellaneous:    Heat Tool, scissors, pencil, small bowl (or other small container), green acrylic paint or tinted gesso (brand and color shade of your choice), non-stick mat



Instructions:

Mix glass glitter and embossing powder from the Encrusted Jewel Kit in small bowl, as desired.
Using Watermark Ink, stamp the grape cluster on the 4.25” x 6” black cardstock.
Sprinkle the embossing powder mixture onto the stamped image, shake off excess and heat.





Using the Sofft sponge and tool to apply and blend, apply Magenta and Violet Pastels onto the grape sections as shown.  Add and blend white for highlights, beginning with a very light application and build intensity as desired. Tip: Do not cover sections completely with Pastel.  Allow the black cardstock color to show through where the darkest shading/shadows should appear.
Add Magenta and Violet around the edges of the cardstock, blending in towards the grape image.



Sponge green acrylic paint or tinted gesso onto both sides of the canvas leaves of your choice.  When almost dry, pinch and shape the leaves. Dry completely on a non-stick mat. 



Using Sofft Tool, add Violet pastel around the leaf edges and in center of leaf to define veins. 
Optional: Carefully add Gemtac along leaf edges. Sprinkle glass glitter from the Frantage Encrusted Jewel Kit onto the wet glue; dry.




Stamp phrase in black on magenta cardstock scrap.  Hand tear around the phrase. 



 Add Violet Pastel around edges with Sofft Tool




Cut a 15” section of Fun Wire. Wind around a pencil; remove.  Gently pull and shape, twisting and curling to look like a realistic tendril.

Attach stamped cardstock onto card with Zip Dry. Position the remaining layers onto card, as shown. When pleased with the arrangement, attach leaves and curled wire with Gem-tac. Attach phrase with Zip Dry.  Dry completely.



Cut 4” strip of Shabby Trim.  Apply Fabri-Tac and roll loosely between fingers, curving and shaping as you roll; dry. Attach over the wire with Gemtac; dry. 



Please leave me a comment and then return to the Linnie Blooms Blog to continue hopping! Or hop through the links below!



What a great way to start off a blog hop -- Memorial Day!

The Design Teams of Stampendous and Linnie Blooms have traded product and are ready to show you their creations!  Here's the link and schedule of postings.  Please show them your love by leaving them a comment!  Commenter's on the Linnie Blooms' Design Team blogs will be entered into a drawing at the end of the week!

Our Designers Links:





Trish Cortez

Dawn Mattson

And here are the links to the Stampendous Blog Hoppers:


At the end of the blog hop, Linnie Blooms will be giving away a FREE All New DIY Home Decor Kit!  So be sure to leave a comment on our Designer's blog to be entered to win!




Friday, May 22, 2015

Let the Celebrating begin....with an ETSY sale!

Gorgeous spring day....Getting ready for the Memorial Day weekend with LOTS to celebrate!  Our remodeling project is showing light at the end of the (very) noisy tunnel....Ollie still has feathers....good medical test results...SO many birthday greetings today...SO much to celebrate!

And what better way to celebrate with all of you than to offer special sale prices in my ETSY shop!
ALL my original art dog, cat and wildlife note cards are 25% off!  WOW....

Take a peek..... www.sweetpetatoes.etsy.com 





Hint:
There's a lot more items in addition to the note cards (scrapbook kits, hand painted silk ties, etc). so scroll all the way through to see them all....

And have a safe and happy holiday weekend!  Blog hopping with Linnie Blooms and Stampendous next week...stay tuned!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

It is SUMMERTIME in Craft Chicagoland! Just in time for Mother's Day.....

Hi all!

Warm weather has finally arrived this week here in Chi-town....which means it is summer outside.  Yay! We kind of bypass spring here and usually go right from winter (which has been waaaaaaay too long again this past season) into the toasty warm summer temps.  With rain mixed in, of course. And everything blooming on hyperdrive and all at once.



Both of these events address the reasons I haven't posted in the past week or two.  Yes, I've opted to spend the time outside instead of inside on my computer blogging. (Can you blame me after the winter WE just escaped from?!).  It's been so amazing not wearing winter gear (heavy coats, hats, gloves, the works) and breathing in air that doesn't burn my lungs.  So yes, I have to say opportunities to walk outside have definitely trumped computer time indoors.

If you don't suffer from seasonal or other environmental allergies, this next reason probably won't really resonate with you.  Basically, it's been tough to see clearly through itchy, watering (and very irritated) eyes.  Whatever I'm mainly allergic to every spring was apparently mega-dosing the past couple weeks. Even with windows closed as much as possible, both humans and dogs brought pollen and other allergens right into the house each time anyone stepped outdoors for even a few minutes. Staring at a computer monitor had to be limited to "deadlined" projects and  necessary tasks.

The misery lasts until it rains and washes much of the mess out of the air and keeps it trapped on the soggy ground.  Which happened yesterday evening so....here I am!  Perhaps relief only for a day, but I'm enjoying the respite, nonetheless.

HOWEVER....allergies and outdoor fun has not stopped me from creating new art or crafting new projects! Or creating a sale in my Etsy shop!  25% off ALL original art dog, cat and wildlife note cards!  Visit www.sweetpetatoes.etsy.com to visit my shop.  Lots of items listed...from scrapbook kits to handcrafted one-of-a-kind silk ties.

If you have not done so yet, please drop by www.mixedmediaart.net and take a peek at my debut article on the blog.  It is under the Product Review Section but you can just search on top under my name Gail Green and the article will pop up.  Or try this direct link......http://www.mixedmediaart.net/?s=gail+green

And, in the spirit of the season, here's one of the projects in the blog article....


I also have another project posted on the Linnie Blooms Design Team Blog....it's pretty cool so take a jog over to that site, as well... www.linnieblooms.blogspot.com

For more info on Linnie Blooms products, visit their website.


Another article will be posting sometime next week...

Have a Happy Mother's Day!




Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Faux WatercolorCanvas Bookmark

Faux Watercolor Canvas Bookmark
By Gail Green

Welcome to the Linnie Blooms Design Team Blog Hop! A link list appears at the end of my project so you can continue hopping and leaving comments to win a prize....$50 worth of Linnie Blooms products!  WOWZA!


And now...here's my project!

My NEW attractive bookmark project is truly a functional work of art! 


This clever design includes a canvas feather to hold your reading spot.  Simply place the bookmark behind the page and slip the feather over page! 




MATERIALS USED:

Linnie Blooms Canvas Bookmark and Canvas Leaf Shape, Bloom Stencil/Mask, Shabby Trim (green)

Kreinik #16 Braid #5520

Sakura Micron PIGMA 08 Waterproof Pigment Ink Pen

Plaid Decorator Glaze (Linen, Aqua, New Leaf, Bluebell, Lemon Yellow, Paprika, Neutral); #12 Flat Paintbrush

Misc: Toothpick, Embroidery Needle, Button

Note: Use Neutral  Glaze to blend or soften colors, as desired.


INSTRUCTIONS:

Stroke a smooth coat of Linen in center of bookmark. Apply Aqua and New Leaf side-by-side on brush. Using a vertical stroke, quickly brush paint onto bookmark, using Neutral to blend and extend drying time. Stroke Bluebell along bottom edge and dab along the top edge; blend into the other colors. Dry.





Place stencil over bookmark, 1/3 from bottom edge.




Brush or sponge Lemon Yellow in center, blending a small amount of Paprika along edges. 





Place straight stencil edge in center of shape, as shown. Using the toothpick, draw a line across to establish a horizon. 



Working quickly, use long loose strokes and blend down to create reflection. Dry several hours






Add Lemon Yellow and Linen to brush and brush up into the sky. If desired, dab additional layers of Linen and Yellow to Sun section above the horizon line. Add swirling lines of Line and Lemon Yellow in the reflection below the horizon. Dry several hours.


Paint the feather Aqua; add Bluebell along the edges. Dry several hours. Write phrase and draw feather lines with pen.  Attach the feather and button to the bookmark with cord. Place Shabby Trim bow as shown and secure with cord. 




















Keep Hopping! Return to the Linnie Blooms blog http://linnieblooms.blogspot.com until I can get all the Design Team links checked and added!

Here's the list of participating designers and their direct links:

Gail Green   (You are here)
Don’t forget to leave a comment on each blog so you can be entered into our giveaway!




Monday, April 20, 2015

Linnie Blooms BLOG hop on WEDNESDAY!

Attn all mixed media artists, crafters, stampers, painters....and creatives!

Watch for WEDNESDAY!

Linnie Blooms Blog Hop begins....

Prizes!  Prizes!  Prizes!

All you have to do is comment on my blog to be entered....so check back on WEDNESDAY!