Friday, April 5, 2013

What I've Been Up To -- A Round-Up

I've been crafting as much as possible, but it's much, much harder being a single Mom than I expected (and I grew up with a single Mom, so I knew it was tough already!)  Also my supplies are here, there and everywhere, and that's a challenge: I have almost no craft paint--where did it all go??  But this also means I'm using and de-stashing what I do have, and that's excellent.

It's hard to take credit for these, because it was mainly arranging jump rings in the right way, but these are three of my jewelry pieces I completed in the last month.  These blue crystals are ones I've had since 2010!!  See what I mean about needing to de-stash?   The picture on the left is a crude attempt at wire-wrapping, which is harder than it looks, people!  The 2nd photo of a jumble using a large dark blue crystal is simply on a large jump ring with several wire-wrapped pieces I bought from other sellers, which I took apart and re-arranged.  The 3 light blue crystals are attached to a wide-link chain using jump rings, and I'm so glad to get all 5 of these crystals onto necklaces!

This is a 16x20 canvas with 2 coats of crimson acrylic paint and hearts cut out from a pad of black, gray and white patterned paper.  The shiny paint worked out well with Mod Podge Gloss, so I'm glad I didn't have to handle the sheen issue with this one.  I'm very into black and white decor right now, with red accents, so this piece became my inspiration for decorating our new place (when we get one.)  And my beloved turquoise fits in well too, which makes me happy.

As far as a sketchbook, I've just started one this past week.  I'm using a Blick 9x12 Mixed Media wirebound journal.  I have been low on inspiration, but decided to let my desire for organization and order lead the way.  When in doubt, make a color chart!  :)

I have 19 Caran D' Ache Neocolor IIs now, {but no craft paint!!  LOL!!} and I bought myself the 12-piece set of Derwent Art Bars for Christmas, and they're extremely similar so far.  I've seen where other artists greatly prefer one over the other, but I haven't done much with either, so I have no strong preference yet.  

This is an attempt at a side-by-side color comparison chartI wanted to see color families together, rather than going by their names.  I've written the name of each in its space, so it's a great way to see what color I need.  (The whole violet/purple/magenta thing gets me every time, and my reds go purple or my purples go red.)  

Up next features this graph which was made on one of those insomnia nights, when I just could not go to sleep.  Allowing myself to go a little insane over straight lines and perfect squares keeps my mind off the clock, so I'm more focused on the page in front of me than on "Oh man, I have to get up in ... hours!"

 These are my markers.  These are everything from Crayola markers to Faber-Castell Pitt Big Brush Artist Pens, and also some Sharpies and "Power Liner" alcohol markers from the clearance section of Hobby Lobby.  In this case, it's about the color and not the quality.  I was also able to throw many markers away that had dried up over time.

I also have a blending marker, and the alcohol inks react with it and makes a kind of watercolor pencil thing happen, and I'll be exploring that in the future.

This last craft is more fun than craft, but whatever.  My son is totally obsessed with Batman right now, and I think we own every single Imaginext Batman toy there is.  Guess who comes with almost every set?  Batman!  We were drowning in Batmen, so James asked me to paint his extras into new costumes.  The lime green paint is a free sample of Liquitex acrylic spray paint, and the dark gray was made using black acrylic mixed with a tiny bit of white.  The 3rd one got painted red, but you can only see a little of him in this photo.  

James named them Grass, Oil and Fire, but I'm not sure if they are bad guys, good guys, goons or sidekicks. 

The Liquitex spray paint is AWESOME!!  It is seriously fun to use, it's not anything like normal spray paint.  There is a depth of color, it's basically the same as their regular acrylics except in a format that is easy to use, inexpensive and I even used it on some papier-mache shapes from Michael's with a brush and it worked beautifully.  (I had no other green to use!  Ugh, I hate moving!!)  I took pictures of the cute lil' flower, but they mysteriously disappeared and I have nothing to show you, but you should try out the Liquitex Spray Paint.

Thanks for seeing what all I've been up to.  I love this last picture of the newly-painted Batmen, so let it inspire you to do something totally crazy with your art supplies!

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