Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Grand Finale!

Today marks the end of the June/July Index-Card-a-Day (ICAD) Challenge!  I now have a stack of 61 pieces of index card art:
Drawings, rubber stamps, collage, ephemera, ink pads, colored pencils, watercolor paint, doodles, acrylics, writing, decorative tapes, crayon resist, tags, pens, punches, Dymo labels, lists, library pockets, ribbon, stitching, postage stamps, graph paper, oil pastels, song lyrics, quotations, buttons, napkins--they are all represented here in one place or another!

My latest cards:
ICAD #55:  "I don't want the whole world; I just want your half."
Lyrics from "Anna Ng" by They Might Be Giants, another song on my Shuffle when I jog. 
Is he saying it to her, or is she saying it to him?
ICAD #56:  Trick or Treat
I'm in the midst of creating Halloween tags for a fall craft show,
so I made this index card to reflect what's going on in Studio 791.
ICAD #57:  DIY Decorative Tapes
I used some of the decorative tapes I made recently from artist's tape and first aid tape to create this card.  To prevent smudging, I sprayed a fixative, and you can see what happened--lots of blurring and smudging!  Lesson learned.
ICAD #58:  Flower Doodles
I doodled these flowers with pens and markers based on an advertisement I saw on a back issue of Somerset Studio magazine.
ICAD #59:  Theme--Maze
No matter what I tried, I couldn't escape those quavering lines!  I discovered that mazes are very relaxing and therapeutic to draw, though, like a Zentangle.  I filled in the correct route with marker and wrote encouraging messages along the way:  "This is the way!  I'll show you which way to go!  It's not that hard once you get the hang ot it!  Come on!  We're almost there.  Just a little farther!  I see it now, just around this corner!"
ICAD #60:  Sunflowers
Sunflower picture from the cover of the Chinaberry catalog over ink-rubbed French text.
ICAD #61:  Dutch Wonderland
A scrap of map from yesterday's family outing to Dutch Wonderland in Lancaster, PA.
Making this card made me think of a fun project:  Kind of a "Scrap-a-Day" journal project, where you could attach some piece of ephemera to a card to represent something you did each day.  It wouldn't have to be arty--just a scrap to represent the day. 
It would make a simple, fun, and little-bit-different record of your days.

Mission accomplished!  An artful index card to represent every day of June and July 2012.  Definitely a worthwhile experience.  I don't know if I will be able to keep it up without the "accountability" of a weekly Link Love on Tammy's blog, but I love the idea of the collection I would have by the end of the year if I continued on my own.  We'll have to wait and see....

For the month of August, check out Tammy's Paper Prompts.


I will announce the winner on August 2, 2012.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Date Night at the Auction

At least once a month these days, Friday nights find my husband and I at Briggs Auction.
We usually go after a nice dinner out, which means we arrive around 8 pm.  We have determined that 8 pm is too late for the ephemera that interests me, and too early for the tools that interest him.  We haven't changed our ways, though.
As fun as auctions are, sometimes you wish you could just pick an item off a table and pay for it, instead of waiting for the auctioneer to get around to that side of the room.
I realized that while I've often shared photos of my loot from the auction, I've never taken pictures of the auction itself.
I have to believe that some of you enjoy looking at the "stuff" of auctions as much as I do.  It is what drives us to yard sales, flea markets, antique stores, and thrift shops.  There is something picturesque about piles of other people's junk, even if we have no intention of bringing it home.
We didn't bid on a single item last night, and didn't even stay too long.  But we've been there often enough now, that there's just something comfortable about showing up, looking around, checking out the crowd a bit, and then heading home.
It's been one of our favorite Friday night Date Nights since we were dating back in 2004!
If you haven't entered my giveaway yet, be sure to stop by the giveaway post and leave a comment!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Collage Pages & a Giveaway!

In my Index-Card-a-Day posts, I have been mentioning the collage pages that I recently created and used for my some of my index cards. 
Original collage page
To create the collage pages, I selected the images I wanted to use from various sources, including a book of French text, some children's books with great illustrations, clip art sources, children's card games, and maps. 
Collage printed on graph paper
I affixed the images to a piece of white typing paper after figuring out basically how I wanted them arranged.  For some I used a glue stick, but for others that I thought I might want to use elsewhere, I used the adhesive squares that scrapbookers often use for affixing their photos to their pages.
Collage printed on white card stock
When I put the original page on the photocopy machine, obviously only the 8-1/2x 11 inch main space is copied, so it doesn't matter if some of the original collage pieces hang over the side.
Pages printed from a stamp album
In addition to printing copies onto white cardstock, I printed them out on graph paper, lined paper, and transparency paper.  My printer did NOT like the lined paper, so I stopped that pretty quickly (after it "ate" a few pages in the process).  I am a huge fan of the images on graph paper (it adds just the right amount of additional interest to the background), but the paper is obviously quite thin.
Another collage page original
Collage page printed on cardstock, graph paper, and transparency paper
I didn't have any original purpose in creating these pages, but once I got started, I had a hard time stopping!  Collage is my "first love" in the arts, and I love nothing more than a good dose of "cut-and-paste."  The images have come in handy for my index cards, and I can see myself using them for art journal pages and maybe even ATCs.  If you have any other ideas for how I might use them, I would love for you to share in the comments.
Collage page original
Collage printed on cardstock, graph paper, and transparency paper
Until then, I do have ONE more idea for using the collage pages:  I am having a giveaway!  If you would like to receive a few of my collage pages, leave me a comment telling me how you would use them, and I will enter you into a drawing to receive them.  Feel free to tell me which pages you like the best, too. 

Please include your email address in the comment, or send it to me by separate email to aleakaskey@yahoo.com so I don't have trouble tracking you down if you win!
Collage original
Collage printed on white cardstock and graph paper
This is just a quickie giveaway:  You can enter until August 1, when I will draw the winner and announce soon after.  Good luck!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Index Cards: The Home Stretch!

The Index-Card-a-Day Challenge at Daisy Yellow ends with the last day of July, which means that we are in the home stretch!
ICAD #49
Nurture Your Inner Child
I am continuing to create collage sheets (which I have used on some of my previous index cards), so this card was created when I was in the midst of pairing an illustration from a children's book with a piece of sheet music.  I added the sentiment with my Dymo label maker, and thought this would make a nice series of postcards and/or ATCs.

ICAD #50
I have been collecting pretty buttons for just a little while now.  Though I sometimes find them at clearance prices, I have also found that if I buy just one or two buttons each time I go to the craft store, I don't "feel the pain" of the cost quite as much!  For this index card, I just arranged some of my buttons on the copy machine, then glued down the copy to an index card.

ICAD #51
Mercy Droppeth
This index card also uses the collage pages I have made.  I cut out the image of the child with the umbrella and rick-rack came from one collage page, and glued it down onto a different collage page, then printed out the words from the computer.  The quotation comes from Shakespeare's play The Merchant of Venice:  "Mercy...droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven."

ICAD #52
I used clip art of a passport (from Paper Art Workshop:  Handmade Gifts) for this index card, then added tissue tape at the top and bottom as well as a couple of cancelled international stamps.

ICAD #53
For this index card, I layered a napkin over a page of French text.  I've used this technique on art journal pages before, and I always think it looks so pretty!

ICAD #54
Foreign Lands
This index card contains a very mediocre drawing using a mediocre pen, based on illustrations by Alice and Martin Provensen in Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verse.  I love their whimsical illustrations, especially the various buildings in foreign lands, but I can see now that it takes a great deal of skill to pull off seemingly "simple" or "child-like" drawings!  I tried adding color with marker to one drawing, and felt like it really messed it up, so redrew it and left it black and white.  I think it would look nice with some watercolor, but the pen I used wouldn't allow for that.

Just one more week of cards to go for the official ICAD challenge!  Tammy is encouraging everyone to continue some sort of daily art practice in the coming months, whether we do index cards, postcards, ATCs, inchies, journal pages or some combination.  For the month of August, she will offer a Daily Paper Prompt to keep the ideas flowing. 
Be sure to check it out!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Your Decorative Tape "Fix": DIY!

What?!  Two weeks since my last decorative tape post?  Surely it's time to talk about tape again!

I have written about all the different kinds of decorative tapes I have purchased, as well as how I store them, and the various ways I have discovered to create them myself:
Recently, I read an article by Carolyn Dube in the March/April 2012 Somerset Studio about painting and stamping on artist tape.  Artist tape is basically like low tack masking tape that is white.  I happened to have some in my stash, so I decided to give her technique a try.  I didn't have any acrylic inks, such as she used, so I decided to try my alcohol inks to see what would happen.

This photo shows my workspace all set up:  roll of artist tape, applicator tool, replacement felts, Adirondack alcohol inks, and tapes stretched out on wax paper:
I declared my first attempt at this approach to DIY tape a "non-success":
The ink bubbled and the colors were kind of ugly.

Then I remembered reading somewhere (I don't remember where!) that First Aid tape used for holding gauze in place makes for great DIY tape.  I had bought some a long time ago for that very purpose, but had not yet tried it.  So to the linen closet I went:
This kind of tape took the alcohol inks much more successfully:
While I liked the solid color tapes quite well, I also enjoyed the effect of droplets of alcohol inks left to spread and blend on the tape on their own:
The "wow" factor for me came when I added rubber stamp images with black Staz On ink:
I continued to experiment by coloring the tapes with acrylic paint, but the alcohol inks came out best of all.  The next time I hit JoAnn with a stack of coupons, I'll be purchasing some liquid acrylic inks to try out the method Dube shared in her Somerset Studio article.

You know you want to try this!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

This Week's Index Card Art

ICAD #41:  Firenze
This rubber stamp might be the prettiest one I own!  I stamped it with Staz On black ink and used my waterbrush with watercolor pencils to add some browns and blues to the scene.  The quotation at the bottom ("Thou paradise of exiles, Italy!") comes from Percy Bysshe Shelley.
ICAD #42:  Negative Space
I used my punches here for the first time during the ICAD challenge.  There's not much index card left after I took my circle and star punches to it!  The background was colored with a mix of smeared alcohol inks.
ICAD #43:  Positive Space
I took the punch-outs from yesterday's card, along with some punched swirls to create this card--kind of the opposite of yesterday's.  This background was also colored with a mix of smeared alcohol inks.
ICAD #44:  Blue Doodle
ICAD #45:  Whip It
One of the songs on my Shuffle while I run is "Whip It" by Devo.  (I highly recommend it, by the way; the beat is a perfect pace for jogging!)  I thought up this card, as a matter of fact, while jogging!  The swirl is a foam stamp, stamped with Fired Brick Distress Ink.  The boy is stamped in black pigment ink, and I drew in his little Devo hat with a pen.  I added the song lyrics from "Whip It" in the spiral:

When a problem comes along, you must whip it.
Before the cream sets out too long, you must whip it. 
When something's goin' wrong, you must whip it.
ICAD #46:  Collage Page I
A recent project has been to create some collage pages; I'll blog about it soon so you can see what I did (and why I did it).  For now, I used one of the collage pages I created for this card.
ICAD #47:  Collage Page II
Here is another card created from a collage page, like the one above.
ICAD #48:  Our Family
In the Uncommon Goods catalog, I saw a product called Custom Family Glassware.  Artists Mary and Shelly Klein (a mother/daughter team) create illustrations of your family on drinking glasses.  I used the examples in the catalog to create a picture of my own family!

To see more examples of ICAD art, visit Tammy's link lists at Daisy Yellow.

Enjoy the rest of your week!