Monday, April 30, 2012

Stupid stamp ink and copics!!

I absolutely hate stuff that is conditional. As in: Is Archival ink copic-proof? Yes, but only on certain papers

This is Stonehenge printmaking paper, left OVERNIGHT:

This is after blasting it with the heat gun so long the paper curled:

And this is the NEXT day:

I normally use StazOn with my Copics, which I just found out is a Copic no-no. But it works. It's worked on every paper I've ever tried it on. I only switched because this is supposed to give a cleaner image, AND because I wanted black and there was no black StazOn at Archiver's that day. next coupon I'm getting black StazOn from someplace!! Oh, and sometimes I say "cope-ic" and sometimes I say "cop-ic", even in my own head. I make myself absolutely crazy. If you've ever read my blog and thought "Is this chick completely off her rocker?" the answer is YES. One hundred percent. Wait, one more thing - those are Suzi Stamps!!

Sunday, April 29, 2012


I hear parents confuse their children every single day and then punish them for it. My own mother was puzzled about why I would put my one-year-old in time out for pressing the Power button on the TV. Was is an enormous deal that he was pressing the button? Of course not. My issue was this: If I let him do it here, he's not going to understand why he can't do it somewhere else. I've walked into restaurants where a small child or two are wandering aimlessly around while their parents eat. Then when they see us come in they're like "OK, guys. Someone's here. You gotta come sit down." And while the kids are screaming and crying because they don't understand, the parents are saying things like: "I told you you could only do that until someone else got here." Just the other day I was at our local indoor play area and heard a mom telling her three-year-old daughter that she could no longer shove her baby doll stroller down the slides because there were other kids there now. The little girl was obviously baffled and simply stood there for awhile trying to understand what she'd done wrong, why she wasn't allowed to play with her doll in the way she was five minutes ago. What do those other kids have to do with her behavior? Answer: NOTHING.

I don't give parenting advice. I don't think I have any useful advice to give. Except maybe one thing: behavior can't be modified for different situations. If it's not OK to shove your baby doll stroller down the slide when other kids are there, then it's not OK. If it's not OK for kids to wander around restaurants when other people are there, then it's not OK. So may people are like "I don't understand why my kid is acting like this." when they know perfectly well it's because "last time" this was ok and "this time" it's not. OR they say "Oh, it's because last time when no one was with us, I let her do..." First of all, if you think it's OK for your kid to do something LET THEM DO IT. I am absolutely NOT going to decide how your kids should behave - unless it affects MY kid. You want your kids to run along the benches in the play area, that's totally fine. NO, I'm not going to let my kid. Because I said so, that's why. If your kid reaches for food on my plate, I will absolutely stop that behavior myself but if you want her to grab stuff of your plate, that's COMPLETELY FINE. My kid is going to sit with his butt on the chair and use a fork. He's going to say please and thank you, and speak in a nice tone of voice - and I don't have to say these things to him repeatedly because this is how I expect him to act ALL THE TIME. Not just in front of people. I might have to remind him to put his butt down, or to not hold his fork like a shovel. But he's not going to look at me, baffled. He's going to say "Oh, yeah." and adjust to how he knows I expect him to behave.

I know, I ramble and most of you guys probably don't even have kids, so you're thinking "What's the POINT?" My point is this: I am teaching my child NOT ONLY how to behave correctly, but also that we do NOT change our behavior depending on people or situations. We do the RIGHT THING when other people are there AND when we're by ourselves or alone. I am NOT a different person depending on who is there. I am also teaching him that he is not the only person on the planet and that the world doesn't revolve around him. That things are not always equal. He knows he can't have every single thing he wants. Don't get me wrong - I spoil him as much as possible. Sometimes we eat ice cream instead of dinner. But he also knows that when I say NO, that's my final answer. There is no begging. Mommy does NOT give in. I'm firm. He knows he doesn't rule the roost. But today when he gets off the bus and I'm waiting at the end of the sidewalk, he'll RUN to me with his arms open RIDICULOUSLY wide and I'll scoop him off his feet and spin him around and then we'll make cookies. Because I love him and he knows it.

I just want to add this: I know that different parenting stuff works for different people. Kids are all different, parents are all different. People are all different! I just think it's sad when people confuse their kids and then get all angry with them. Just do what you think is right, what works for you - and do it consistently. Screw everyone else. Go with what works, what feels right. Don't let "other people" decide how you let your child behave. What you think is right IS what's right. It is. No matter what anyone else says.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

FIrst Fairy Palette!

Will posting this here help me actually start painting? Am I accountable to you? Maybe! Here's the palette:

And the paints I made for it!
More to come!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Angry-Pillar ATCs

All finished and ready to be mailed! 

Yesterday someone asked me "Why is he angry?" and I felt silly because I thought it was sort of obvious and I was clearly wrong. We're doing a caterpillar swap because in the Fairies class, we're talking about cocooning and transforming. Right now we're caterpillars, crawling along and munching on leaves. We don't see anything wrong with the caterpillar life. But if we want to become butterflies, we have to let go of EVERYTHING we know. Everything. We won't walk any more, we'll fly. We'll eat different foods in a completely new way. Sure, sure, sure, there are exciting things, too. But in order to have the exciting things, we have to go through the scary and unusual things. ALL caterpillars turn into butterflies. They don't have the "comfort zone" problem that humans do. They're not afraid. But this guy? He's resisting change with all his might! He's angry because he doesn't WANT to change. He doesn't NEED to change. He's living his life just fine, thank you very much, and he doesn't want to hear about wonderful new adventures. He just wants to live his little caterpillar life exactly the way he is. Of course, it's a ridiculous concept because caterpillars don't think. They don't resist change. But what if they did? What if they were too scared to change?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

More Photoshop Fun!

This is my BFF, Tami Duggan, isn't she adorable?? I love this picture of her, but I didn't like how the detail of her dress was completely lost... I fixed it!
I love how this came out!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dandelion Wishes

Scanned journal page:

Plus iPhone pic:

Plus a new app:

Plus photoshop:
How cute is that little face? He said he never wants to be a grown up because he's worried it will mean he doesn't love me as much as he does right now. That's my kiddo! I want to figure out how to use these digital pages in my regular journal. I think. Or maybe it's better to have these digital pages? I don't know yet.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

You Suck Monday - InkTense Pencils

So, I've been wanting to get some different InkTense colors since I don't really have any good portrait ones and portraits are what I draw most of the time. Twice I've been to Blick's and gathered all the ones I wanted and then put them back. But the peeps decided they wanted to do InkTense for YSM, so here we are.

First just graphite:

A little shading:

Since I don't have any portrait colors, I just went with sun yellow and tangerine:

Here I added a little baked earth to the face, apple green for the background. The more I worked with her, the more I liked her, which is TOTALLY unlike me!

I used bark for her hair, which is a really cool kind of purply brown, and leaf green for her shirt. Then I went to bed because I sort of liked her and I felt like I must have been punchy for that to be true.

After she waited all night, she STILL wasn't horrible! All I did was add a little to her background and lips...
 Then I redefined her features a little with more graphite, and then Kelly texted me a picture of her girl and I realized that I hadn't colored her eyes, so I did. The colors kind of leaked out of their pencil lines and I'm absolutely fine with it! Normally I'm much more of a control freak than that. What's up with me?!?

Next I want to get real portrait colors and try the InkTense on canvas. Maybe a new journal bag.

Monday, April 23, 2012


For him, I tried a trick my friend TJ told me that made a ton of sense at the time. She said to carve out the MIDDLE of the little places (like his eyes, teeth, and spots) first, before carving away the edges, so I tried it. 

And he came out pretty cute. But see the spots in his eyes and how uneven his teeth are? TJ's trick didn't work for me at all. The only reason I can think of is because this is a super soft medium and she carves linoleum blocks and she really likes the much harder Speedball rubber. I much prefer this substrate to the pink stuff from speedball, and next time I'll do it my old way - outline everything and then gouge out the little parts. Even though it's probably the "wrong" way, and I could get better at this way if I practiced, sometimes there's no reason to change what we're good at!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Project 365 Goog-style

Did you know that the whole point of P365 is to become a better photographer?? I had no idea. I thought it was just like a photo journal of my days, and that's what I use it as. I'm going to give you an example. These are the photos I took on 4/20

Guess which one is my P365 picture? Of course it's the erasers! Because it is about my life. On this day, I found these erasers that my friend Ajae loves, AND they reach come with a refill, AND it's her birthday! So I got five - four for her and one for me. While the flower photos are beautiful, it just so happens that I was in a flower store (nursery? garden center? I don't know) and I think flowers are pretty. But seriously - it was half an hour out of my day, and I was WAY more excited about the erasers. Erasers are something I use every single day. Are they beautiful? I guess not. Is it a wonderfully taken picture? I've certainly done better. But it made my day and is going to make Ajae's.

What's the point, Goog?? The point is this: every picture I have for P365 tells me a little story. Maybe not a thousand words, just a little memory brush - Oh, yeah, I remember that, it was fun! What would the flower pics say to me? Probably something like - where the fuck was I then and why the hell did I take some many pictures of flowers?

I'm not trying to "improve" anything. I'm just keeping a record. An honest record of my actual life. In a hundred years, will anyone care what my real life was like? Maybe not. But I guarantee you they'll be more interested in ME than in a picture I took of blue orchids that can't survive Minnesota winters.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

To Do List

I wish I could sit down every single day and draw and paint amazing things in my journals and on my canvases and everywhere - but I don't "feel like it" or I don't have time or I sit and nothing happens. Sometimes a to-do list is the best I can manage. I added this one with a Sharpie poster paint pen over an existing background.

Friday, April 20, 2012


Hee hee! Me and Kelly sent this to Ajae for her birthday: 


Birthday pizza!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

He made me promise not to put this on facebook...

I don't think he's ever even LOOKED at this blog, so he'll never know! 
Don't tell!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Stamp Face






My ink pad isn't juicy enough, but you get the idea! I LOVE carving stamps!!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Hybrid art?

In digital scrapbooking, they consider it "hybrid" if you print what you've made. This is the reverse of that, I guess. Here is a journal page that I sprayed and painted and scanned:

And I trimmed it a little and then put on the tree and the bird and tried to find a quote that fit "flying" or "dawn" because I had it in my head that these are the colors of dawn, even though they're more sunset, but none of them were great. Then I found this one:
Just in case anyone out there doesn't already know, my friend Suzi Blu is coming to Minnesota. She's staying with Kelly for the summer and we're going to look for a house for us to live in. People keep telling both of us that it's not a good idea, that living with friends is bad, and blah, blah, blah. But I think people have these thoughts because they don't know how to be themselves around other people. My mom won't get the mail (which is in a box at the end of her driveway) without putting lipstick on. Some people don't have what I would consider "real" friends. After I had Liam, my friend Shanti did my laundry. She did dishes, went to the grocery store, watched him so I could run errands. Not to mention she was IN the delivery room with me. If you don't have a friend who would watch you squeeze a person into the world, then wash your stinky socks and stuff them in your dresser for you, that makes me sad. Maybe I have more amazing friends than my share.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Practical Art

I'm not a "clutter" kind of chick. The bobble heads my husband loves are junk to me. I rarely buy things that don't have a purpose. I don't have magazines on my coffee table (I don't have magazines at all, they're ephemera which is just another word for "trash" in my mind), I don't save the junk mail, I don't have a junk drawer. So, doing art for the sake of doing art hasn't been easy for me. I mean - $6 for an ounce of paint that I'm just using to paint the pages of my journals is crazy. But I LOVE the idea of practical stuff being turned into art. Not like a clarinet into a lamp - then you've just got a clarinet you can't use. But check out these folders:

They're just plain old school folders with the pockets on the inside. And they're WHITE! And matte, so you can totally draw on them if you want to. I painted mine:

I drew the face on a full sheet white label and shaded her face with my prismacolors. Then I painted the rest of her and cut her out and stuck her on. I integrated her a little with some paint and ink, and I think she's finished. I think this is a total win. 

Also, I'm sort of careful about not letting people in my "real" life know that I'm an artist. None of my school mates know anything about me other than I have a kid and don't have a car. Maybe I'll let these folders be my beacon. I'm going to try ALL kinds of mediums and even use some of them like journal pages! I want to live an artful life and I feel like things like this are steps in the right direction!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Photo Restoration

This was a lab for one of my classes. It's NOT my image, I got it right here. My teacher was impressed, which surprised me. He taught us how to do this, then he was surprised that I could? Either way, I'm pretty proud of it. I used to do similar stuff when I worked in a one-hour photo lab, so I had some experience, but still, it was nice when my teacher turned and stared and me and said "You did this tonight?" 
The sepia tone isn't exactly right, the original picture is slightly more orangey, but I think it looks pretty good!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Paint Your Own

Rubber ducky! That's right, Mini Me wanted a rubber ducky from the Easter bunny. So I got him a regular one, one wearing bunny ears, and this one - that he got to paint himself! I know, I know, but he's an only child, and that should have SOME benefits, right? So I buy too many Easter things and he doesn't get a sister.

There is his ducky, all painted and ready for the tub!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Naturally by Farynar's Wings

I LOVE "boy" colored kits! This one is called "Naturally" and you can find it here.

These are my peeps: 

And my Liam:
(Just for the record, the duck is not an element from the kit, I extracted it from one of my pictures.)

Here is the full kit in all its glory:
Aren't the colors awesome? I love them!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Michael's Find!

What could be more fun than THESE??

If anyone knows how to make these into pens, I would be totally amused by that knowledge!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Play Date!

We spun the wheel and I won a sketchbook, TJ a hat - but the man gave us BOTH sketchbooks and hats!