"Hey, if I had somewhere to go, I certainly wouldn't be in Cleve-Land." -Howard the Duck

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Crocus Prints

Even though I didn't get good pix of this year's crop of crocus, I was able to pick some of them to make crocus prints.  I've done this in past years with more success, and I think that this year I didn't have a high enough cotton content paper.  I'll fix that by next year.

Anyway...what I've done here is to pick some of the most vibrant crocus & place them between pieces of  "handmade" paper with some floral inclusions.  Once the crocus are in position, I pound the back of the top paper with a hammer...just a regular hammer that I've had for years to hang pix on the wall & stuff like that.  I do this on a sturdy surface with a cushion of some newsprint or something to protect the surface...in this case...the kitchen counter.

The result is 2 crocus prints...mirror images of each other.  For some reason, this year, the prints weren't very vibrant...I guess the crocus had started to fade too much.  It's best to do this at the first sign of the blooms. 

The print above has some of the crocus petals & stamens still imbedded in it.  That's a nice touch.

Finally, I took one of the faded out prints & enhanced it with some watercolors.  I kinda like it.

Please feel free to copy and save these images to use in your artwork.  I'd love to see what you create with them...add your link in the comments.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


It's been an unusually warm March here in Clevetown.  We may hit 80 on the first full day of Spring.  The crocus bloomed a couple weeks ago...this pic of the crocus that fill our front yard is actually from last year, but I missed getting pix this year.  Soon we will have violets & narcissus in the back yard...and I'll be outside enjoying their beauty.  I plan to sit in the sun & enjoy the first day of Spring.

With as nasty as Ohio is, I figure we deserve a nice spring...let's hope this trend continues.  Adios, Winter...we won't miss you at all.

Happy SPRING, y'all!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Springtime in Paris

The current ArtCharms swap that I've signed up for is called "Springtime in Paris".  These are the charms I've created for that theme. 

Their base is a Scrabble tile with a hole drilled through it.  I have a hand drill that I use, so there's a bit of muscle involved there.  I never realized that the wood used in Scrabble tiles can be softer or quite hard...and quite difficult to drill through.  The tiles then had scrapbook paper featuring a map of Paris glued to the fronts & trimmed to fit.  Same process with a text print paper to the backs of the tiles.  Edges were slightly sanded & the papers were protected with MicroGlaze...a wonderful product.  The edges of the tiles were finished off with 1/8" wide black & white ribbon...the most frustrating part of these charms.  A Paris clock (from SkyBluePink) was glued to the text side of the piece.  Finally, a jump ring was inserted into the hole & an Eiffel Tower charm was added to complete the charm.

I won't be doing quite as many swaps this year, so I'm really enjoying the ones I choose to play in.  Join us if you're interested. 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Happy 100th Birthday, Girl Scouts!

Back in the day, I was a Girl Scout...growing up in 1950s Suburbia, it was inevitable.  I started out in Brownies, of course.  Troop 120.  We had lots of fun times at our meetings and at camp & campouts....and selling Girl Scout cookies.  I went on to be a Cadette, but quit scouting once I hit high school...and became a brooding young artist!  By the late 1960s, I was no longer interested in earning badges or going to meetings.  I have no idea where most of my Girl Scout stuff is...maybe in the attic.  I still have my pins & wore the oval Brownies one during college...Peace, Man!

Back in 2007, I was part of a group of artists who created a fatbook based on Girl Scout memories.   The page above is one of 2 I created for the book.  I'm lucky to have my school pix from elementary school & found that one of me dressed in my Brownies uniform on picture day, 1961. 
My Girl Scouts page featured an image from the Girl Scout Handbook that I remember having...but I purchased one on eBay to do the fatbook.  I also purchased a bunch of Girl Scout Badges to use for the fatbook.  Each page featured an actual badge...every one different from the next.  It was fun to see the badges & remember the ones I had earned way back when.  I ended up with extra badges after creating my pages, so I called the local Girl Scout council & they were happy to take them. 

So...Happy Birthday to all the Girl Scouts out there...past & present.  Keep selling those cookies & we'll keep buying them...especially Thin Mints...YUM!

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Ancient Egyptian ArtCharms Bracelet

The art charms from the Ancient Egyptian swap arrived during the past week.  I had already started my bracelet using the charms I made...so it didn't take long to open the swap charms & finish my bracelet.  I'm quite pleased with how it came together.   

The next swap I've signed up for is Springtime in Paris...I'm working on those charms now & will share pix when I'm done.

Have a great Sunday...hopefully the sun setting an hour later today will make it worth losing that hour of sleep.