A Logo?

I’ve been entering a bunch of “challenges” and checking out a bunch of different blogs and started thinking I should maybe make a logo to identify myself in the “blog world”. I’ve seen a ton of really cool ones and know I’m going to have to work up to something truly spectacular, but here’s my first crack at it. I was trying to combine the gardening and the crafting, and the mandala seems like a nice nod to my psychology “day job”. Oh, and purple. I love the color purple. (The movie was pretty cool, too.)
Now I just have to figure out how to attach this to posts on other pages. This blogging can really get technically complicated, but it’s so fun!!

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Catching up on ICAD

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Here are another 3 ICADs for your enjoyment.  The one, above, is my favorite.  I used the “stitching” theme and the “sun” prompt and was completely inspired by that morning’s church service so I used a meditation from the bulletin for the quote.  In the background is a picture of my church (a beautiful cathedral next to a big park in our city) that’s usually on the front of the bulletin.  I sewed on the round scrap of t-shirt fabric for the center of my sun with a black bobbin and yellow thread (to get some more dimension in the stitching).  Then, I put some “rays” in with magazine bits.  It was so simple to make but I love the effect.

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This one is my second favorite of this bunch.  The text is from a great book, Switch on the Night, by Ray Bradbury.  In the background, I used security envelope patterns (for the “junk mail” theme) to make a kind of skyline (for the “city” theme).  I painted them with watercolors and then added a dark sky with some silver Sharpie stars and the “ice-cream moon”.

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My last one in this installment was a bit experiment that didn’t end so well.  I had a nice background, using a map, stamps, and pre-paid postage marks on envelopes (“map” and “mail” themes).  I white gessoed over them which kind of left it pretty blah (too much of the gesso, I think).  The big experiment was with a cellophane window from an envelope that I drew lines on with glue (thinking I could rub them off after painting) and then painted over it with a mixture I had made a while ago with acrylic paint and spices (another experiment).  The rubbing off the glue didn’t work so well, so I made some more lines (thinking the “map” theme) with my trusty Sharpie and then just slapped the quote on it.  Ironically, the quote is one of my favorites: the title of a book about mindfulness by Jon Kabot-Zinn.  Oh well.  Sometimes the journey is more interesting than the destination.

This is going to be the best part of today’s blog. I’ve found so many neat ICADs on other blogs that I can’t wait to share:

http://mollylollyloo.blogspot.com/2013/06/just-ride-elevator.html  – This one is one of my favorites.  The “ride the elevator” phrase spoke to me so much and I love the deep colors and textures.

http://iamrushmore.blogspot.com/2013/06/index-card-collages-made-with-swap.html  – I love this blog and her ICADs are so graphic and bold.  She’s done them in previous years so she has quite a collection going, too.

http://www.glimmerbug.com/icad-14-polka-dots-pugs/  – I like her style, as well.  Also bold and unique, with a great sense of humor.  And who doesn’t love a pug???

Mandala Monday

ImageIt was time to harvest some of my herbs and it also happens to be Mandala Monday.  Here’s what I came up with.  I used a newspaper with an announcement of one of my favorite farm stands winning a local “best-of” for the background.  It’s a really loose design, with some long shoots from my thyme around the outside of the circle.  I added in some shoots from a variety of mint plants in the center and then put some cilantro on top with the flowers from the cilantro (going to seed for coriander) in the middle.  I love it and the best part is how my hands smell after picking and playing with the herbs.  Or maybe the real best part is the delicious things my wife will be able to make with them.

Here’s the before (the mandala) and the after (with them drying on my porch):

ImageSpeaking of my amazing wife, it was my birthday yesterday and here’s what she got me (among other things).  It’s a regular cornucopia of craft supplies.  Did I mention that she’s amazing???

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ICAD + Drunken Stampers Challenge

ImageI could not resist the Drunken Stampers’ challenge this week.  As soon as I saw “Monty Python” I was hooked.  The challenge was to use “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” in a card and, for the truly brave of heart, to also include a “rabbit” theme.

http://drunkenstampers.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/drunken-stampers-challenge-132-monty-python-the-holy-grail/

This is my all-time favorite quote from the movie (possibly from any movie):  the knight insists “It’s just a flesh wound” after having his arms hacked off in possibly the funniest movie fight scene in history.  For the “knight”, I found this cute little rabbit from a Richard Scarry book I’ve had sitting on my craft shelf for ages.  I drew the wild bore insignia on his little suit jacket.  A little red glitter-glue blood and I don’t think it could be better.

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Instead of keeping it in my ICAD quote collection, I had to put this one in a little frame and give it away to someone who would appreciate it.

This was so much fun… I have to find more of these challenges.

UPDATE: This is the coolest thing ever- I won the challenge with this one. I’m SO, SO, SO excited!! Here it is on their blog: http://drunkenstampers.wordpress.com/2013/06/25/life-of-the-party-winner-challenge-132-monty-python-the-holy-grail/

Father’s Day pillows

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I’m so excited!!!  I made it to “Make”, one of the all-around coolest craft and DIY blogs with a head-spinning variety of ideas.  They posted my Father’s Day gift project of making pillows out of old t-shirts.

http://blog.makezine.com/craft/fathers-day-pillows-from-upcycled-t-shirts/fathers-day-pillows-1/

The one I started with, above, is for my dad.  How could I not make this t-shirt into a pillow for my pop!?!  I had made him a couple other pillows out of t-shirts for Valentine’s Day, which he loved, so now he has a collection.  I made even made a card using a sewn-on heart from a left over scrap of fabric.

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I got a little more daring on this one and added a ribbon trim.  I got the idea while browsing through some Father’s Day ideas on a great blog for a trim store:

http://blog.mjtrim.com/2013/06/10/fathers-day-diy-fun/

This one’s for my father-in-law who loves Orange Crush.  It won’t go with anything in his house, but I couldn’t resist.  Another scrap-fabric card finished it out.

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The last one is for my friend’s birthday.  “Piebald” is a band from Boston that I’d never heard of (which I rather like after checking them out).  I just liked the phrase (the name of one of their albums):  “The Rock Revolution Will Not Be Televised.”  I put the ribbon trim on this one, too, and made an accompanying card.  I just gave it to him and he said he wants me to make another one with a t-shirt he has that ripped (but that he can’t bare to get rid of).

Here are a couple other Father’s Day crafts I’ve found on blogs.  There are so many cute ones out there, why waste your money on Old Spice and ties (my go-to gifts for my dad when I was growing up)?

http://inspireschelsea.wordpress.com/2013/06/15/fathers-day-diy/  – These are an extra-cute way to use kids’ handprints.

http://calmchaosblog.com/2013/06/14/diy-more-recovered-corkboard-fathers-day-edition/  – This is a great idea for a neat cork board… I may just try it for myself.

What did you make for Father’s Day?

2 More ICADs

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Here are two more additions to my growing ICAD collection.  I LOVE this exercise and am so grateful for finding the project and having the courage to jump in.  Thanks, Tammy!  Here’s the link to her page, in case you want to join in (or be inspired):

http://daisyyellow.squarespace.com/icad/

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I’m enjoying seeing other people’s ICAD contributions almost as much as I’m enjoying making them myself.  Here are some other WordPress bloggers who have some great collections going:

http://trashbubblesandlifeslittlebits.wordpress.com/2013/06/05/i-think-icad-i-think-icad-i-think-icad/  – Lynn is posting hers once a week.  Although she doesn’t promise she’ll be able to keep them up for the whole summer (but who can?), I love what she’s done so far!  The coolest thing is that in another post she’s given a link for turning a print (in her case, an ICAD) into fabric at http://www.spoonflower.com/ .  I really want to try it!

http://missdiane73.wordpress.com/2013/06/08/icad-day-8/  – She’s posting a couple at a time.   This is my favorite of hers, so far.  I love how graphically bold it is and I like that she’s also using quotes on her cards.

http://thebatamonblog.wordpress.com/2013/06/06/two-more-war-comic-icads-a-theme-in-my-artwork/  – Here’s a young artist who’s jumping in on the fun.  He’s using pencil drawings for his cards and has a great eye for shading and dimension.  Keep up the great work!

Catching up on ICAD

ImageHere are my next 4 ICAD projects.  They actually all sprung from the first one, which was built around the proverb:  “Bloom where you are planted”.  I was looking through my magazine word and image collection to do a collage, knowing that I’m not great at drawing and wanted flowers (for obvious reasons).  I couldn’t find the words, so I got out my Geli-stix pens (with this week’s theme being “ink”).  I don’t know why I still have those pens because I’ve never liked them.  They only work intermittently, so I have to go over and over the lines and it wasn’t the look I was going for here.  Oh well.  I tried drawing some flowers on it, but didn’t like those much either.  I can’t throw anything away (hence, the pens) so I decided to experiment.  I screwed open the pen and used an Xacto knife to cut the cylinder that holds the ink.  I tapped, and blew, and flicked the ink all over my little card.  It was so fun.  So I opened up a couple more pens.  Then, I took a couple other cards and blotted up the extra ink, giving me backgrounds for 3 more cards!  And these are my final products:

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Of course, the last one is the the original card.  (Remember, I can’t throw anything away.)  I went over the original lettering with a silver and a black sharpie.  I guess my little card did bloom, after all.

The best part of the story is that I posted another card on Daisy Yellow’s ICAD Facebook page, saying that I really didn’t like those Geli-stix.  Another person in the group suggested that I gift them to her, because she would use them.  As I was going through my aforementioned magazine word collection looking for the first quote (that I ended up doing a lot of word-by-word and letter-by-letter) I found the quote from the Bhagavad Gita… a perfect way to use one of my inky backgrounds.

This whole exercise was certainly an “adventure of the mind”.  I love how things work out sometimes when I open myself up to whatever the Universe might bring me.  THAT’S the source of all creativity, I think.