Monday, July 19, 2010

Altered Board Books!!

Having a BLAST lately, altering board books I found at my favorite thrift store! So much so that my granddaughter Isabel wanted to do one on her own!  Well, why not?  So we spent several hours this past week painting the various pages.  Here are the results so far!

Don't they look fun?! Isabel is ahead of me; she's already painted her front and back covers!

I've had "board book altering" plans for some time (Tons of plans and very little time. Sound familiar?), but never took the plunge.  After reading Rice Freeman-Zachery's book, Living the Creative Life, in which she wrote about the artist, Violette, of White Rock, British Columbia, I decided to check out Violette's blog ( . 

WOW!!  That's the best way I can describe Violette's use of vibrant,  living out loud, totally juicy colors!!  Strangely enough, because I'm usually drawn to a much calmer yet still beautiful color palette, I was immediately hooked, enough so that I went on line and ordered Violette's book, Journal Bliss. The rest, as they say, is history!  I read the book in one evening and have been busy coloring my world ever since!

Completing these altered books will take time of course, but I plan to show each page as I finish it. And the best part is that I'm already planning other altered books!  Thanks to Violette!!

Happy Creating!  Jan

My First Artist Trading Card (ATC)

Today I created my first ATC!

It came as a part of my first issue of The Gypsy Wagon Zine, published by Krystin Clark Goodsell (  As it happens, I've been wanting to make ATCs for quite some time, but I just never made it happen.  Needless to say, when I discovered the ATC packet inside the zine, I was nicely surprised!

Now this certainly isn't any great piece of art, but it is my own and I thoroughly enjoyed making it!

Following the two rules made clear in her instructions (i.e., always measuring 2 1/2 by 3 1/2 inches and only traded between artists (never bought or sold), I also wanted to use materials mostly supplied by Krystin.  The only "artful" material I added was green acrylic paint that I finger-painted onto the back of the card. 
I didn't want to "over think" making this ATC; I simply wanted to have fun.  So I jumped in and started cutting, positioning and gluing.  One of the furnished supplies was a strip of film negative. I immediately pictured the letters "A R and T" when I saw it so my first step was to cut that out free hand.  I also loved the oriental red envelope that held the supplies so I incorporated it as well.

I loved the challenge of coming up with something from virtually "nothing" and I especially enjoyed cutting out words that related to art.  My idea was that the art words (and by association, art itself) were being poured out into the world, so the pitcher was perfect!

All in all, I'm very pleased. I had a fun time and I learned several good lessons, such as letting the Mod-Podge dry before taking the next step and, if possible, make photocopies of any wording you may only have one copy of.  Best lesson learned - finger painting is
F. U. N.!!!!!

I'm very excited about making more ATCs and I plan to see if there's an ATC swap in my community.  I'd love to start a collection of them!

Happy Creating!  Jan