Friday, September 21, 2012


There comes a time when you have to say "goodbye."  
It's time. 
I will be sorry to see her go...she has been with me for a long time. 
It's kind of sad really because she still has a lot of life in her 
and I could keep her and try to make her useful but what's the point?  
She's not as fast as the newer models!
She never had a voice like Siri.
Her lens are not as sharp as they used to be but a good cleaning may remedy that.
Through no fault of her own, 
she can't communicate with her cousin, the new kid on the block.
But it's time to say goodbye.


Say Hello!

TO A NEW I-PHONE 5!!!!!!

I will be sorry to see her go but I am sooooooo excited about getting a new phone!!!!  YAY!!!! One that will be lighting fast and one that can communicate with my desk-top computer.  I have always had problems with the syncing of the phone and computer due to the error of two different Apple store geniuses.  I won't go into it here but the store manager was able fixed it as best he could.  Now it's up to me to reset my desk-top, download all the pics and apps on my phone, update the software on my phone and sync the two!  Why not just buy a new phone???   It will already be synced and the Apple store can transfer my apps.  Besides, my phone really is ancient.

After much debate as to whether I should buy the new phone or last years model, I decided to order the new phone on-line.  Hey!!!  Who wants to stand in line with all those crazies?  NOT ME!!  Anyway, I am told that they may not even have them available because they already ran out due to the pre-orders.  But that's OK....I am a verrrrry patient lady and can wait the two to four weeks for delivery.

Well...enough gibber jabber about the I-phone....did you notice the picture of the I-Phone case? That is the real reason that I will be sad to see her go!  When I first bought my phone, I bought one of those hard plastic, rubbery, hot pink cases (they didn't have a lot to choose from) to protect it from damage in case it got dropped. After a while, it began to look soiled and there was nothing that I could do to get the oily looking stains off of it.  Sooo....I PAINTED IT!!!  That has been about 2 1/2 years now and there is no sign of wear.

This is how I painted it:

  • I was concerned that the type of plastic, with the rubbery feel would not accept the paint well so I decided that I needed to use a primer of some sort.  What better primer than Mod-Podge?  Mod-Podge, I have heard (can't confirm this) is really watered down white glue.  A GLUE!!!!  That should make the paint stick!  So first, I washed the case thoroughly, let it dry and primed it with Mod-Podge.  This probably will not work if you have one of the phone cases that stretches into place.  My case is very hard plastic that snaps into place.  It needs to be a hard case.
  • Next, I painted two coats of a craft acrylic paint for the base.  Nothing fancy here, I didn't use my expensive paints.  Also, use a pretty pastel color because you are going to doodle on it with markers.
  • Now comes the doodling.  I doodled the entire design first with a black Micron Pen and then colored it with Martha Stewart permanent markers.  I am sure that other brands of markers will work just as well but make sure that they are permanent and not water soluble.
  • Time to add DOTS!  For this I used the handle of a paint brush and white acrylic paint. I dipped the brush handle into the paint and then stamped on the design.  If you stamp several times before reloading the paint, the dots will get smaller and smaller. I used this to my advantage and stamped in rows to make graduated sized dots. 
  • Seal your masterpiece with two - three coats of Mod-Podge.  YOU'RE DONE!!!! 
What better way to say that you are an Artist than to have a Phone Case painted by YOU with your very own design!!!  ENJOY!

Thursday, September 20, 2012


I always wanted to use this Erma Bombeck quote on a journal page.  Because I love to paint and draw it has so much meaning to me.

When I stand before God at the end of my life,
I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left,
 and I could say "I used everything that you gave me."

Wouldn't it be wonderful if in the course of a lifetime you were able to learn all there is to know about all art forms and to experience the use of all the many art mediums that exist in the world today? (I hate to admit it but I have a good start on that one.  That is.... owning many art mediums. Tee Hee...much to my chagrin!)  I would love to be able to stand at the pearly gates before God and say,  "I have no talent left...I used everything that you gave me."  I have lived my life to the fullest and squeezed every ounce of creatives juices from my body and soul.  I am so blessed that God entrusted me with the ability to create my art.  It is what makes my spirit sing.... it is who I am!

I painted these two journal pages in my altered book journal using acrylic paint.  I used several  techniques that I learned from Joann Luftus, a classmate in Joanne Sharpe's Color Love 101 class.  Joann Luftus is a super super talented mixed media artist who paints the most wonderful whimsical ladies and angels.  I loooove her angels!!  They are gorgeous!  I love all her work!!!  If you want to take a peek, here is the link to her blog and Etsy store:


Both of these pages were painted in my altered book journal.  This journal is fast becoming my most favorite journal to use for all mediums.   It takes alcohol markers extremely well on un-gessoed pages, watercolor on gessoed pages, acrylic on both gessoed and un-gessoed pages and it is great to use for collage, Prismacolor pencils and Pan Pastels.  I really haven't found a medium that I don't like to use in this journal......and it cost me all of 50 cents at a Library sale!

To begin with, I only used four colors on these pages, plus white and grey (mixed white gesso with black acrylic paint).  It looks like I used more but that is because two of the colors are translucent and when they're painted over another color, they mix and create a third and different color.  I used Liquitex Soft Body acrylic artist colors.  OK!  OK!  They're not Golden but they fit my budget!  Besides, Liquitex are great paints and have been around forever!  Anyway, these are the scrumptious colors that I used:

Bright Aqua green, Light Blue Violet, 
Deep Magenta (translucent), and Indian Yellow (translucent)

I used two stencils for the background and made the one from a girl that I found in a fashion magazine.  I used card stock and a craft knife to make the stencil.  For the quote, I used a black Pitt pen which writes beautifully over acrylic paint.  And...did you notice how the translucent Magenta paint created the purple color when it mixed with the Bright Aqua Green?   And... the translucent Indian Yellow...well, I misted it with water and let it run all over the place and turn any color it wanted to be.

I added a few pieces of my homemade Washi tape and a piece of text from an old book and wal-la!  Done!

Monday, September 17, 2012


Don't throw away your failed art work or scraps of painted paper!!!  I repeat...don't throw them away!! Why you ask?  Because they can be recycled and used in future art projects.  Every painted piece of paper can be used in some form or another.  Even the newspaper print that you use to protect your table when spray painting those inky pages and even the paper towel used to clean your paint brush.  Save them all!!!

This next project is a technique that I learned from the very talented Joanna Grant, a fellow classmate in the Joanne Sharpe Color Love 101 Class.  Joanna recycles her art to make wonderful collage art pieces.     I have tried collage before but it never occurred to me to recycle my own art work.  If you would like to see some of Joanna's work, pop on over to her blog and Esty store:


First, you need an inky or painted substrate on which to paste all your art elements.  I chose a journal that I made in Joanne Sharpe's Letter Love 101 class. This was made by using watercolor paper, stencils and Dylusions and Ranger Colorwash sprays.

Next, look for art elements to use in your project.  Look at using your original art work including your art rejects, inky papers, saved magazine or newspaper pictures, ephemera, etc.  (Be careful if you sell your art work that you only use copyright free images.)  Now, decide which elements you wish to use.   Don't worry if you don't want to cut up an original or if the image is not the right size......we can copy and re-size them.

For this project, I didn't want to destroy ANY of my original art work, even the rejected pieces. You never know when you might want to use that particular piece again. So... I scanned and re-sized all the chosen elements using Photoshop Elements software.  You may have a different photo editing software that will work just as well and that's fine.  The important thing is that your software allow you to crop the scanned images. You don't want to waste all your precious printer ink just to use a very small portion of the picture.  Also, you need software that will allow you to include several images of varying sizes on one piece of paper. This will save a lot of printer paper!!  Hey!!  This tutorial is about recycling isn't it?  Well....we don't want to create more waste do we?

For this piece, I wasn't real particular about the size of the individual elements except for the lady's body which had to exactly fit the length of the page.  Everything else could be approximate.  Therefore, I scanned both the upper and lower parts of the body,  cropped and re-sized them to exact measurements.   I could not live without the resizing feature in Photoshop Elements.  It is probably the feature that I use the most!  It allows me to select the exact size in inches, pixels, millimeters and more.  If I want my finished image to be 3 inches tall, my printed image will be exactly 3 inches tall.

I wasn't too particular about the sizes of the remaining images so I eyeballed the sizes by first cropping and then dragging and dropping them onto a blank 8.5 " x 11" page.  I then stretched them to size by grabbing a corner and stretching until I felt the size was approximate enough for my use.  (Used Photoshop Elements)

Now we're ready to print but before we move on, I need to make a few comments about the printer and paper.  I happen to use an HP inkjet all in one printer that uses Viera ink.  It does a suitable job, although, the blacks are not as dark as I would like them to be.  I was able to improve this a little by selecting a better quality paper.  I now use Hammermill Color Digital paper.  So, keep in mind....the paper can make a difference!  

The picture below shows the inky journal and all the scanned and printed elements that I planned to use for the circus girl journal page.  Notice that I have several sizes of the same element?  I couldn't decide the size I needed so I made several different sizes.  The ones that I didn't use went to my recycle pile for use in a future project.

Oh!  Almost forgot the most important part....the inspiration for this piece was a picture that I clipped from a magazine of a girl riding a unicycle.  I only wanted to use the bottom half of the girl so I copied and re-sized it.  The top half of the girl was from a journal page and prior blog about using Washi tape to make "She Art."  You may recognize her!  Be creative and use a combination of your recycled art, clippings from magazines, newspapers, paper napkins..anything that your little ole heart desires!!!'re ready to cut out the elements, position them onto a painted substrate and when you are happy with the composition, glue into place.  I used a good quality glue stick like Elmer's Craft Bond Photo Stick. Don't make the same mistake that I made by buying Elmer's School Glue Stick.  (I bought six giant tubes!!  When I make a mistake, I make it big.  Ugh!) School glue is made for kids and does not stick to inky pages.

Once all the elements are glued into place, you can then add the finishing pen work, doodles, lettering or more.  For my piece, I added the tutu, arms and umbrella handle, pole for the yoga girl, and the tightrope wire.   That's it!!!

I hope that you enjoyed this tutorial and if you have any questions, please feel free to leave me a comment.  Have a happy recycling!!!