Monday, December 31, 2007

Top 10

I just posted a new post over at The Little Scrap Shop's blog. Check them out! They have fantastic kits... I just picked the items for January's kit which debuts tomorrow! I'll just say that it's full of fun, colorful hip product!
Here's a sneak peek:

Here is the link:

What's your Top 10??

Friday, December 28, 2007

Reflection on "Why I Scrap"...

As this year comes to a close , I thought that it was appropriate to update my personal statement for "why I scrap"! Maybe reflect on why I started and where I want to go with it. It's been a productive year for me. I have been accepted on several Design Teams (with a few more hopeful applications out there), been published (3 times), taught classes, and made well over 200 pages this year! I am on a roll creatively. It's just amazing that it's the end of December and I'm excited to see where 2008 leads me. So, reflect on what this art means to you and what are you scrap goals for 2008?

What is this crazy artform about? Well, for me, it is not only a venue to express my feelings, thoughts, and memories, but it's also a place to experiment with materials, record observations and just CREATE! I am a 3D artist by training and, up until I had my son, practice. Now, it's not convenient or practical to create in clay, metal, or plaster with a 3 year old around. So, I turned to scrapbooking. It's essentially 2 dimensional, but I can play with 3 dimensional qualities and techniques on a medium that is flexible. I can leave it and come back whenever I have the time, need or energy. I NEED to create. It's something that just feeds me. I feel whole and free when I make something. I must touch the materials, feel the textures, see the colors, and rearrange the elements. It's vital to my existance. It just so happens that this is also a way to capture my life (in it's crazy entirety) and hopefully engage my viewers to want to get to know more... want to try the techniques that I've tried and create their own art. That is my personal fulfillment... to inspire myself and others.

What are my goals for 2008?
1. I would love to become a member of a Manufacturer's Design Team
2. Get a few more layouts in publications
3. Finally tackle grungeboard - got a bunch, now need to figure out how I can manipulate them!
4. Maybe complete an album or two.
5. Finally, I'd like to get organized... mentally, physically, and get those layouts in actual books this year! LOL!

Wish me luck! Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Note to Santa

My friend just sent me this and I thought I would share.....

Dear Santa,

I've been a good mum all year. I've fed, cleaned and cuddled my children
on demand, visited the doctor's office more than my doctor, sold sixty-two
cases of choc.bars to raise money to plant a shade tree on the school
playground. I was hoping you could spread my list out over several
Christmases, since I had to write this letter with my son's red crayon, on
the back of a receipt in the laundry room between cycles, and who knows
when I'll find anymore free time in the next 18 years.

Here are my Christmas wishes:

I'd like a pair of legs that don't ache (in any colour, except purple,
which I already have) and arms that don't hurt or flap in the breeze; but
are strong enough to pull my screaming child out of the lolly aisle in the
grocery store.

I'd also like a waist, since I lost mine somewhere in the seventh month of
my last pregnancy.

If you're hauling big ticket items this year I'd like fingerprint resistant windows and a radio that only plays adult music; a television that doesn't broadcast any programs containing talking animals; and a refrigerator with a secret compartment behind the crisper where I can hide
to talk on the phone.

On the practical side, I could use a talking doll that says, 'Yes, Mummy'
to boost my parental confidence, along with two kids who don't fight and
three pairs of jeans that will zip all the way up without the use of power

I could also use a recording of Tibetan monks chanting 'Don't eat in the
living room' and 'Take your hands off your brother,' because my voice
seems to be just out of my children's hearing range and can only be heard
by the dog.

If it's too late to find any of these products, I'd settle for enough time
to brush my teeth and comb my hair in the same morning, or the luxury of eating food warmer than room temperature without it being served in a
Styrofoam container.

If you don't mind, I could also use a few Christmas miracles to brighten
the holiday season. Would it be too much trouble to declare tomato sauce a vegetable? It will clear my conscience immensely.

It would be helpful if you could coerce my children to help around the house without demanding payment as if they were the bosses of an organized crime family.

Well, Santa, the buzzer on the dryer is ringing and my son saw my feet
under the laundry room door. I think he wants his crayon back. Have a safe trip and remember to leave your wet boots by the door and come in and dry off so you don't catch cold.

Help yourself to cookies on the table but don't eat too many or leave
crumbs on the carpet.

Yours Always, MOM...!

P.S. One more can cancel all my requests if you can keep my children happy, healthy and always believing.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Where has this month gone???

Here we are after Thanksgiving... Black Friday. Did I get up ungodly early and go shopping? YEP! Matt thought I was nuts and even tried to "forbid" me to go. BLAH.. do I listen, NO! So I got up at 5 am and showered, dressed, and headed for the mall. The plan was to stay away from toy stores, electronics, and large retail chains. I went to Macy's first and got Matt a ton of stuff for his b'day next week and Christmas. Good start! Then, after dropping that all off in the car, I went back in for more. I got a Latte and then headed for Old Navy... I got Mark a couple things for his b'day and as I worked my way down the Mall, I thought about how much I love shopping for others at the holidays. It just feels good. I have to admit that I did buy myself a few items. I got a couple pairs of pants, gloves, a new bra, and a new coat. I needed the bra and coat badly... the others were a bonus. Kind of a pat on the back for making it through the last couple months. It's been a crazy few months. Just to recap... I finished a ceramic tile mural at school, managed to NOT kill any kids (that is said in a *Wink Wink ** sort of way), threw a Halloween party, finished DT assignments, had numerous doctors appts.... both for myself and for Mark, had a Colonoscopy ** more about that in a minute**, got a new car (well, a mini van to be exact), attended a conference where I presented 2 workshops, managed to NOT kill the hubby, and am now planning birthday parties and Christmas! Whew!!!!
Okay, about that Colonoscopy... totally was not a big deal. The worst part was the prep. I got there and they had a hard time inserting the IV... Apparently I have no veins. They put me out and I woke up dopey and feeling pretty good. I got photos of the interior of my a** and found out that what was causing my discomfort was a few small interior hemis... Okay, I can deal with that. BIG sigh of relief. No surgery, no pain... very easy. So, I immediately wanted fries and a diet soda! Matt was a sweetie. He didn't even argue with me. It was the best soda and fries I had ever eaten! I was pretty loopy all day.
Now that that is out of the way and I know I'm all clear... literally, we are starting to try to have a second baby. Yep, you heard me. I am ready to make my life crazier than it is now. I can't believe I'm saying that. Mark is potty trained and ready for a big boy room and I'm ready to return to diapers. Well, now that I write that, it doesn't sound so great! LOL! I think this is the perfect time. If we don't have another soon, life will be too comfortable and we will never decide it's a good time. So, we are putting it in the hand's of a greater power and having a good time while we're at it! Our parents are thrilled of course...even with the possiblity of having another baby in the family... mind you, we aren't actually prego... they just swoon at the thought of it being a possibility.
Anyways, I have a million things that I need to finish... creatively speaking. I'm working on 3 mini albums... one is a DT assignment for The Little Scrap Shop and the others are gifts. One I have been "working" on... ie: procrastinating... since last March. I'm also doing Christmas cards, a garland project...I'll share later, gifts, and other DT projects. In all my "spare" time, I need to finish at least 5 more artworks for my group artshow in January.. What was I thinking??? I better get moving on that! I'll post some previews when I get them done... let's just say I'm going to be doing some mixed media and prints to go along with my sculptures.

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

Monday, November 12, 2007


Okay, this post is going to be full of TMI... I am having a Colonoscopy(sp?) this afternoon. I am one mean bi*ch today! I haven't eaten solid food in over 24 hours! I'm not a happy camper. Not to mention the constant potty time I've put in... I never thought I'd be having one of these at my age. I've been having some rectal bleeding ('s not pretty for me either) and was worried. So the doc thinks he should have a look. I'm not really scared, just a lot embarrassed. You'd think I'd be over it after having a child, but that is an area that I don't let anyone look at. I was more worried about excreting while giving birth than I was about the blood thing. It's a private matter. So why am I making it public? Well, it's not that bad. The worst is not being able to eat and the inconvienence of having to stop what I'm doing and go potty. I hate that! My FIL is a pro at this procedure.. he's had over 10 of them. SO, he assured me it was no biggie.. I was skeptical and still am a bit. I just have 4 hours left before the event. All I have to say is... they better knock me out! I don't want to know anything that happened until it's over. I'm not interested in seeing it. I just want to know that whatever's there is not a problem or that they took care of the problem. I can't wait to eat tonight! That's what I'm holding out for!!! So wish me luck and sorry if I grossed you out.

Thursday, November 8, 2007


It's been a week since I've been on here. I've been busy. Life is crazy right now. I'm working on so many projects and trying to keep up with grading my student's work! It's just one thing right after another! I'm going nuts trying to keep up with home, school, art, wife, etc... SO bear with me.

Good News! I just got notice that I'm going to be published in Scrapbook Trends Embellish Ideas Book! So effing excited! See that layout on the right? My Prince? He's going to be published! I'm taking it down this week. IT's already been removed from the online galleries, but I can show it her for a bit longer. I have to mail the original out by Tuesday... that part always has me panicking! I can't stand to part with it! I know I'll get it back, but you never know with the mail or things that happen, so I'll just cross my fingers and hope I get it safe and sound. Thanks for letting me ramble!

Monday, October 29, 2007

The Art in Business

I just got back from our first artshow at our District office... It's not the first time we've hung art there, but usually it gets viewed by the administration and those few souls that come to the D.O. (as we teachers lovingly call it). Our new Fine Arts curriculum coordinator organized this event to coincide with the monthly VITAL (Vision in the Arts at Liverpool) meeting. It was packed with both Elementary and High School students and parents viewing their child's art and enjoying goodies. I presented my "Why Art?" video to the public. I have been working on this video for the last couple months. I used imovie and pretty much did it all by myself. I'm pretty proud of what I did. Everyone raved about it and I think the music people were pretty jealous (if I do say so myself). It was great. My vision was to promote the visual arts in High School targeting administration (who are clueless that art is a HUGE part of today's business world), middle school students, and parents. It's great for all levels. It shows artwork and images of our students working on art in the classrooms mixed in with quotes from business leaders and artists stressing why art is important in today's workforce. I think it got the point across. I wish I could post it here, but the file is WAY too big! I'm going to try to link it to my school's website and I'll post it if it works. If you go back to my first post ever, you will see my opinions on art in the business world. Any computer program, marketing strategy, or formula can be taught to older kids in a short time, but creativity and innovation must come from young minds that have a background and long term exposure to the arts in order to generate new ideas for retail, marketing, and sales fields. It's sad that most of our guidance counselors don't even know that kids have to have a fine arts portfolio in order to get into Architecture or Design schools. They are clueless... So, here's to our own "marketing strategy" and how the arts are important for ALL kids!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Design Team!

I have wanted to be on a design team for awhile now. I am now on 2! They are both great sites. Full of inspiring artwork, tips, challenges, and more! I just had to share. I'm an Island Girl with We B' Scrappin (here locally in Cicero , NY ) and with The Little Scrap Shop (online...based in Georgia). It has been an overwhelming experience in such a good way. First of all, I am honored that they want me to create artwork for them and two, I love working with other designers who share my love of art. It's not merely a "scrapbooking" venture, but a partnership of sorts. I love that this is going beyond a hobby and that it is actually my "Art" right now. Being a Fine Artist, I fought against this infiltration of scrapbooking... so crafty. Okay, I admit, I LIKE being crafty. I feel good making cute, fun things. I'm a Martha Stewart wanna be (well, except the jail time part). That being said, I struggle against the way I should think as an artist... who defined what "real artists" should be or shouldn't be? In college and even with my artist friends (the ones that actually make a living on their art), you would NEVER consider crafts a Fine art.... Anything remotely crafty is evil in their minds. It's a very snobby world in the Fine Arts world. However, craft is definitely becoming a regular art form... ceramics, fibers, felting, quilting, collage, and mixed media is being considered Fine Arts. Well, it's scrapbooking a combination of all of that... I consider it Mixed media. I just think the word "Scrapbooking" conjours up images of cut out triangles, 12 photos on a page, and stickers. Yes, that is where most of us "scrappers" started out. That company (you all know the one), has come along way, but still caters to the simple and quick. It's now about the art, the process, what I can do that's totally unique, that thrills me. I feel bad that I don't attend that company's crops anymore. I love my friend that sells it, but I just feel stiffled there. It's not particularly creative. People who go there are also very snobby... they don't like my devient behavior in using paints, drywall tape, or "Gasp!" mixing patterns. It's a loyal bunch. So, to look down my nose at my professors who boast that Fine Arts must stay traditionally categorized, I say... "get an open mind and look at what is being done around you!". This industry is growing faster than the Fine Arts industry! I will always consider myself an artist whether I sell my work to a magazine or in NYC. I enjoy the creation process and whatever my medium, I am very proud of what I do!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Gorgeous weather... when will the bottom drop?

I really never thought of myself as a pessimist, but seriously, how can we be on such a lovely weather streak? It's Central New York after all. We NEVER get consistent weather. But none the less, it's been consistently beautiful and DRY! I'm loving it, except for the allergy thing, but I have to wonder, are we in for it? Is this just a kind of sick joke by mother nature? Will she dangle this lovely wonderful weather we've had and slam us with another 12 feet-of-snow-in-a- week-kind-of-weather? When will the bottom drop out? I guess I should just enjoy it right now and not worry about it, but I am coming to HATE CNY winters! Really, 33 years is enough to jade anyone with winter blizzards, cold, slush, and short summers. It's depressing to say the least. So, why have I not moved down south? Why stick it out and complain all winter????

Well, here are a list of pros and cons for CNY:
1) inconsistent weather (long, cold, snowy winters & short, warm summers)
2) humidity (BLAH) except for this year!
3) horrible roads (due to snow and road salt)
4) Rude and miserable people in the winter & spring
5) High taxes resulting in high prices overall
6)because of the high taxes, businesses are leaving and cultural opportunities are not diverse or plentiful.

Okay.... PROS:
1) Autumn is spectacular!
2) Housing is reasonable.... low cost to build.
3) Summers are usually mild
4) Salt Potatoes ... our specialty (love those summer babies!) Produce is cheap and yummy in the summer
5) NO hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, forest fires, monsoons, sand storms, or tsunami es Just ALOT of snow... snow melts... Oh yeah... no scorpions, tarantulas or other weird deadly bugs.. that I know of. Just a lot of mosquitoes and flies... nothing major.
6) What doesn't kill us makes us stronger (because we are used to the terrible weather, we don't shut down with an inch of snow! Life goes on!)
7) Wineries and fine dining abound! We have it all!

Okay, so there are probably more Pros or Cons, but those are the ones I can think of. It's definitely not too bad, but I still hate CNY winters!!!! So, I'm getting my coats dry cleaned and my boots waterproofed and preparing for the worst... We'll see...

Here's some beautiful CNY pics to share:

Saturday, September 15, 2007

IS anybody out there???

Seriously, I don't update my blog daily because I thought NOONE was listening... well, some of my girls at We B' were telling me that they do in fact read my blog... WOW! I am pretty happy about having a small audience! Thanks ladies. You make me feel loved.... LOL!

Okay, today's blog is about my first week or so back to school...
It's been fast and furious. The kids are nice so far except really immature. They are either really small OR really tall. Weird combo! I like most of my classes though. I've already made some of them mad as that I had to move a few seats around in order to make the room less chatty while I'm chatting! Oh well... life isn't always fair. I warned them and they either didn't believe me or didn't care UNTIL it came down to me following through with the consequence I threatened. So, I've decided that it's much like having your own children. It's always a work in progress. By the 10 week report, I will have them BELIEVING that I mean business. Anyways, I have a few kids that are particularly excited about the visual journal project and have ALREADY starting creating on their pages!!! WOW! So cool or kewl, as the case may be. Okay, they are rough diamonds right now, but I'll have them sparkling in no time! We did our first "playtime" activity yesterday... Inking backgrounds. I'd read somewhere that mucking up your white pages will make the experience less intimidating! So I decided to show them how to use block printing ink and a brayer to roll a colored background. Fabulous results... I went to a crop last night and then home and decided to try it on my own pages. I've used paints before, but not a brayer... I'm excited to say that it is freeing them to make a mess and creativity is at a high! The kids, and myself, were have a fabulous time playing... We had 2 firedrills, but just so happened to occur AFTER cleanup! YES! Thank you Lord... that would have been interesting to walk out with ink all over our hands and try not to touch anything! Okay, here's my playtime results....

One last thought... PLEASE leave me a comment so I know you are out there! LOL! No seriously, leave me something!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

A Fantastic NEW site/ kit club

I am trying out for a Design team on this fantastic new blog site and kit club. The product is so great and the site has a great feel to it. Angel is the blogger and owner of the site. She is so supportive and fun! It's a small site and the gallery is growing! Stop by and check it out... The blog is called "Stop, Drop & Crop". Look in my "Links I Dig" below for the link to the site! It's a great site for ideas and how to advice in scrapbooking. I'm loving the new challenges and prizes too. It's very motivating. Need a kick to your mojo? Check it out!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

What I Learned about myself...

Okay, I am seriously bummed here. It is the last day before the Memory Makers Masters contest winners are announced and I didn't get a call. I have waited by the phone like a good girl and NOTHING. So, what have I learned from this nerve-wracking experience?

1) Nothing ventured nothing gained... What did I have to lose by submitting? I won't go to pieces, even though I am disappointed. I loved my layouts and now I have 5 pieces that I can submit elsewhere. I am of the mind that if you don't try , you can't win. I didn't win, but I'm proud that I tried and I will try, try again next year.

2) I'm very competitive. I knew that I liked to win, but who knew how competitive I was until I was looking at other's work and picking it apart. I know, childish right? It made me feel better at the time. I really am excited to see the new Masters and what they turned in to win. I need to appreciate other styles and be gracious. Hmmm that's harder than it sounds.

3) I need a LIFE... I am obsessed with the message boards... I have checked them every time I come within 10 feet of my computer. I am going nuts... I am ready to get back to school and wean myself off of this thing! However, I have completed more layouts than I've ever done in a 2 month time! I am on a creative streak and can see my style growing into something that is more me. I can only hope that it continues to change and be fun.

Well, that's it for now. I am going to go scrap some more and maybe work on some school stuff.... we start in 2 weeks now... I guess I need to move on and start thinking about that. It feels like fall today anyways.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Ribbon printing...

This is so cool... I made this up all by myself. So proud that I found a never been done technique. I've seen people print text on ribbon, but never a photo. SOooooo I tried it. LOVE LOVE LOVE how it came out, so now I'm printing all kinds of photos on all colors of ribbon!
I even submitted to Creating Keepsakes and they may want it... I'm still waiting for the Yay or Nay, but I got an email from the Editor-at-Large saying that "it looks really promising and I just have to run it by some other people"... so I sit and wait some more. Man, I'm not good at this waiting thing! Too excited. I shared on a couple sites, but I may need to pull the photos there. We'll see. Off to play with some more ribbon!

Here' s some examples:

Monday, August 13, 2007


Okay, I am not a patient person. I have submitted several of my layouts and projects to various magazines and contests and am now playing the waiting game. Will they call or email / will they not? I hope I get a phone call, but there are 600 other people doing the same for the Memory Makers Masters contest. How could I possibly be one of the 10? Not very likely. I loved my layouts that I sent in and feel really confident that they are up to par, but even since then, my style has changed. I have a wild need to create right now. I love what is coming out of me onto my pages. But will they??? Will others? I am full of self-doubt from this darn submission process. How can I possibly wait another minute to aleve myself of this nervous energy, this anxiety, this "how can I possibly be good enough" feeling. There is such a range of talent out there that I find it impossible to believe that I can even figure out what they are looking for. Am I good enough for them? Do I care? Of course, I would love to have that reassurance that I am one of the best, but I think for me it's not only the validation but the excitement of doing something that I have been afraid to do... go public with my art. Be out there and having to meet deadlines for new pages with new products... that would be stressful and FUN!
Anyways, It's Monday and they will begin calling the finalists... the best. Will I get a call? Will I sit here and feel terrible when I don't? I don't want to get my hopes up so high and then nothing come of it. It is my first time submitting after all. I've sent them my best pages, at the time. All I can do is hope that it is good enough and that I will remember that I felt good about them when I sent them, if and when I find out for sure "Yay or Nay". Fingers and toes crossed!

Monday, August 6, 2007

My birthday weekend!

We had a lot planned this weekend, in which my birthday fell on Saturday, so we decided to go out to dinner on Friday night. It was just Matt and I. We had a gift certificate from Christmas for my favorite restaurant, Julie's Place. Matt made the reservations & I called my Mom to babysit. She offered to have Mark stay overnight at their house. I was hesitant, but agreed. He's never slept in a regular bed before and I was certain that he would not cooperate and stay there all night. I got an email a few days before from some girls at work inviting people to meet them downtown that night. I was so excited to be going OUT for my birthday! So, the day was nice and HOT. I got dressed and we dropped Mark off at my parents. We had a fantastic dinner with a great bottle of wine. I had a salmon dish that was prepared on pan in front of our table with flames and it was YUMMY! We had dessert and coffee and then off we went downtown Syracuse. We met them in Armory Square and had a few drinks and lots of conversation! Then we went to Daisy Dukes (very much a hick bar with many bachorlette parties that night) to ride the mechanical bull. I had a dress on , so I just cheered and made fun of everyone. The girls did a shot with me at midnight to commemorate my 33rd birthday! Delish!
Then we went down the street to what used to be a cigar bar in search of the perfect cigar. yes, you heard right, I LOVE LOVE LOVE cigars... only once a year though. It was no longer a smoking bar... It's been a while since I've been there. So, we went to the store up the road and bought a vanilla flavored cigar each. OMG! So fun... that's where my downtown adventures ended and we went home for some private time. I was a happy birthday girl! Here's a few more pics!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Goals for my 33rd Year

Okay, I 'm gonna get serious here for a minute.. As I am coming up to my 33rd birthday (on Saturday!), I want to write down what my goals for this year are. I have some things to work on...
1) Be more patient
I am way too impatient. Impatient with others, impatient with waiting in traffic or in line at a store, impatient with work. I need to slow down and take a breather. I always feel bad when I yell at Mark to hurry up and when I'm short with hubby when he's bothering me. I need to relax and learn to look at the positive, not the negative. It's getting to me and I KNOW it gets to others. I'm forever in lines... the store, the highway, whatever... I am so annoyed if I have to wait more than a few minutes. WHere am I going? What's so important? Why the rush??? SLOOO@W Down!

2) Get organized...
This is a biggie! I need to weed out the old and organize the new. This is on my resolution list every year, yet I'm still a mess. I love chaos when creating, but afterwards, I look around and groan.. it's a mess! Sometimes I can't even find things I need! It wastes so much time... I need to reevaluate the storage options and get things in a workable place.
3) Exercise more.
I HATE HATE HATE exercise. The sweat, the pain, the time it takes... I would much rather be curled up with a good book or creating something. I HATE it! Anyways, I need to move my muscles more. I got a flyer in the mail from a local gym and it has aerobic classes and is very reasonable (at least on the flyer) so I need to stop in there and see. It's right near my work and home so it seems perfect. Maybe I will actually get in shape.

4)Spend less $
DH would be thrilled if I did this one. I spend WAY too much on non-essentials. I'm not even talking about my scrap addiction, though that is a big chunk! I go to Target at least twice a week. YIKES! I need to write down what we need and pick 1 day a week to go. That's my goal.

5) Submit pages to magazines
I so want to be published. I'm doing all this work, now I need to send it to editors to see. I can't get in if I don't submit. My goal is to be published in at least 2 publications this year.

6) Go on at least one vacation...
I need a break at least once a year. We are going to go to Florida in April, but I'm talking about a "Me" trip. One where I go by myself purely for enjoyment. Maybe Vegas, maybe AZ again???

7) Try for a 2nd Child..
Okay, I'll admit it, I'm thinking seriously about trying to have a second baby. Mark is almost 3 and even though he's a challenge at times, I really would like another one. He is even telling me that he wants a "baby sister"... LOUDLY this morning I might add. Maybe we'll get on that after the holidays. I would love to have him/her around September/ October. That way I'll get maternity leave and can go back mid way through the year or take the entire year off.

Okay, that's my list right now. Hope I can accomplish all of these.

Thursday, July 19, 2007


I have discovered painting on transparencies can give the look of Hamblys without the expense. Well, not as much per sheet! I got transparencies at Staples in a box of 100! Then with my favorite stamps and some empty paper towel rolls... I made a pattern! So fun!
Here's the steps:
1) choose your stamps and paint colors... I use foam stamps or stamps that are fairly solid in design with Ranger dabber paints... LOVE them! Here you see me dabbing paint on.

2)Okay, stamp a pattern by re-painting the stamp and repeating to create a pattern.. much like Hambly does...

Jenbly's are not permanent as a screen print would be, however... you can make as many as you like in any color or style... For more durability turn transparency over to apply to page.

See my example:

Made with Stampin up stamp and white Ranger paint!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Creative mojo!

I am a creating machine right now. I have finished at least a page or two a day for the last 2 weeks! I was on quite a dry spell for awhile. It was so frustrating! I thought I'd never finish something again. Well, I got the We b' June Kit and BLAM! I was inspired to create! I did some pretty safe pages, but then I got all my materials that I had been "saving" and just PLAYED! Here's the result! It was very freeing... I felt alive and the energy just coursed through me. I am even using bright colors, which is unusual for me. Not because I don't like them, but because when I do something that I'm not happy with the result it stands out big time! But fortunately I LOVED what happened! I hope that this creative streak lasts for awhile because I have alot to finish. I can't wait for all the new CHA stuff to come in (even if my hubby is not so thrilled with that idea) so I can see the latest papers and embellies! I'm addicted to overlays right now so hoping there are lots more. I love Hambly, but I have ventured into making my own "Jenblys"... I painted a paper towel roll and stamped them on transparencies. I can only make 8 1/2 by 11" ones right now, but i'm looking to see if I can do the same on acetate (is that safe for photos? Not sure). I 'm also trying out some other stamps like leaves and flowers! Here's a sneak peek:
Let me know what you think...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I could take a lesson or two from my students

There are days that I know I will always remember for the events or moments that struck me as vital to my existence. Today is one of them. I had an "aah haa" moment. One of my students who is extremely talented, but normally can be very rude or difficult, came in to ask me a question at lunch. Remember, I teach 9th graders, Freshman, who most would rather chew their arm off than give up their lunch time (aka social opportunity). She came to ask me to look at her drawing of a face and give her some pointers because she just couldn't get it right. She is known to draw in the anime style where figures are very disproportional due to large heads and small bodies. She was trying to draw one realistically and was doing a nice job, but features were a bit too low on the face so she was frustrated. This request took me completely by surprise because not only was she asking for help, but she was doing it politely and seriously. This is a talented girl who doesn't always follow the rules. She is usually bored because she is so smart and intuitive, but she is rude, argumentative, and sarcastic. I like her! She drives me nuts at times with her stubborn opposition, but I see this spark of creativity in her that is unleashed and passionate. She is on her 2nd Visual Journal this year with her first being so fat that it won't close. Back to the story... I was floored that she would ask me for assistance in drawing. In comes the "aah haa"... She likes me.. she really likes me. I have her respect. How did that happen???? I admire her courage and spontaneity in her exploration of materials and fresh creation. She has an innate sense of style and design. She layers materials in a way that looks haphazard, but it works. I'd hate to ruin that. Sometimes I think I would've been less fearful of failure in my art if I hadn't listened to some of those snotty professors that insisted I do it the "right" way. I would have created with wild abandon! There are times I feel bound by rules and what's "good" art... So, this cocky Freshman girl taught me that I don't have to be in control all the time, sometimes it's best to let them play and not try to make them all do it my way. I am finding that I enjoy the everyday surprises that these kids offer. They do things differently sometimes... Those are the best times. It's when they whine that they "don't get it" or "what do I do now?" or "can't you just do it for me?" that I cringe. Not because it's annoying, but because it means they are trying to please me or are scared to try, or rather, fail. The joy of just doing is squashed by our school system's need to create good test takers, good book learners, good rule followers. Really what we need are rule breakers that take chances and try new things, not for the destructive properties, but for the fun of it! I learned that I need to just play and ask for help when needed, but always trust my gut. I hope no one breaks her spirit and makes her follow the "rules" of art because I have a feeling that she is going to make her own "rules".
Here are some of her journal entries:

Sunday, April 8, 2007

About ME

I suppose I should give a little background on myself. I am from Central New York. NO, not New York City. Everyone who is not from NY thinks that when you say you "are from NY", that means you are from NYC. Not True! There are so many gorgeous towns and cities in upstate NY that those "downstaters" are missing out! They may have world renowned art museums, theater, financial district, fashion and great restaurants, but they also have horrendous traffic, dirty streets, rude people, loud sirens all the time, crime, and rats, cockroaches the size of small cats. No thank you! I love the suburbs! I was born and raised here in Syracuse and LOVE it. I far prefer to be close to the action without all the noise, smells, and traffic to go along with it. I can choose when I go.
I teach 9th grade Studio in Art at Liverpool High School Annex. I live about 5 miles from the school so I see the kids all the time in my neighborhood. I love what I do. I can't imagine doing anything else as a career. It is highly rewarding to see a kid's progress in their skills from the beginning of the year to the end. I teach a bit of everything from drawing to ceramics. It's never boring and this age group has plenty of drama!
I am a mommy to a very energetic and lovable 2 1/2 year old. He is the sunshine of my life. My husband is a crazy Type-A personality which is polar opposite of mine. He is a saver, where I am a spender. He is analytical, number smart, and I swear he has OCD! I am emotional, collector of everything, and a creative problem solver. We get on each other's nerves, but make a pretty good team!
My scrap style is usually pretty simple, but I like to try new things and am constantly shopping for fun embellishments, much to my husband's annoyance. I love ribbon, distressed papers, stamps, chipboard, and rub ons! I am just starting to play around with digital elements that create hybrid pages, like printing my own transparencies, titles, photos on various materials, and borders.
Thanks for reading!

Importance of the Arts in today's workforce

This is my first post in my blog. As an artist and art educator, I want to make a difference in my student's creating process and observation skills. I feel it's of extreme importance to learn to "SEE" the world around you. If you walk through life just going about your daily routine and not notice details, you risk missing out on experiences and knowledge about life. It may seem that not all details are important, but in order to be a complete person, you need to be able to take in all details or seek out what makes things work. Our world is changing from an industrial, analytical world to one that puts much emphasis on concepts and meaning. In other words, companies and economic success is dependent on people who can think outside the box and be creative! (according to Daniel Pink of "A Whole New Mind") YAY! The computer age is here and with that, an increase in outsourcing and automating boring , routine, numerical data leaving room for artistic explosion of creative solutions to old products. Now, I don't proclaim to be a genius in this department, but I was so inspired by a speech given at our National Art Education Association's National convention in NYC a couple weeks ago from Daniel Pink. He wrote numerous articles for Wired magazine and other business mags. He has traveled the world discussing this topic. I was impressed! He was funny, witty, and gave very good examples to back up his views. It made sense to me and my fellow colleagues. I would love to have him come to my district and speak to them about the importance of art education in our students futures. So, in conclusion, Got Art?