This post has been moved to my new website: http://tammytutterow.com/2012/06/wood-you-be-mine/.
This post has been moved to my new website: http://tammytutterow.com/2012/06/wood-you-be-mine/.
Not long ago, when I was looking through blog posts looking for the links I was going to share for my time as guest curator at Crescendoh, I happened upon a link to a video online by Brene Brown. The blogger who posted about it mentioned she was working through some life things and found the Brene's message helpful. Since I was working through some heavy life things too, I decided to check it out. To say I fell in love with Brene's wisdom, wit, and message would be an understatement. I began reading her blog and looking at her books. Turns out, I owned one already! I bought it last year and never got around to reading it. Maybe it was divine thing because I think the timing wasn't right yet, that I wasn't really ready to fully embrace the message of it.
I don't generally post things like this here, I am all about projects and insructions, but I was reading an article by Brene posted on Oprah.com I thought would be really appealing to those of you who visit here. I hope that it will speak to you, the way it spoke to me. . .
Painting a Gourd
All of us were made to make things. During my studies, I found out a surprising piece of data: There is no such thing as a creative or noncreative person. Every single human being is creative. Every research participant could recall a time in his or her life when creativity brought him or her great joy. It was usually childhood, and the creative expressions ranged from coloring or finger-painting to dancing, singing or building. What was most fascinating was that the participants never talked about learning how to be creative—they just were.
As adults, what keeps us from being creative—from painting, cooking, scrapbooking, doodling, knitting, rebuilding an engine or writing—is what I call the comparison gremlin (a close cousin of the shame gremlin). People say, "I'm not good enough," or "Why am I the only one with dangling modifiers?" or "I'm not a real sculptor...I'm a total poser." In other words, we shame ourselves into stopping. While we may have all started creative, between ages 8 and 14, at least 60 percent of the participants remember learning that they were not creative. They began to compare their creations, they started getting graded for their art, and many heard from a teacher or a parent that "art wasn't their thing." So we don't have to teach people to find joy in creating; we have to make sure not to teach them that there's only one acceptable way to be creative.
I had to push myself to rediscover my own artistic side. Unused creativity is not benign. It clumps inside us, turning into judgment, grief, anger and shame. Before I turned my life around, I used to dismiss people who spent time creating. When a friend would invite me to go to an art class or something, I'd respond: "How cute. You go do your A-R-T; I'm busy with a real J-O-B." Now I realize that was my fear and my own frustrated need to create.
To kick things off, I went to a gourd-painting class with my mom and my then-9-year-old daughter, Ellen. It was one of the best days of my life. I'm not kidding. I still paint, and now I'm having a serious love affair with photography. But start with something easy. Why not start with a gourd? Put a silly face on it. Make it smile.
Read more: http://www.oprah.com/relationships/How-to-Increase-the-Love-in-Your-Life-Brene-Brown/2#ixzz1yXibeN7B
When I was a kid in school, we used to get notes from the teachers and the office on yellow slips of paper with a smilie face on the and the title "Happy Gram". I used to love getting Happy Grams! They were way better to take home than the notes I would also get telling my mom I talked too much and daydreamed a lot during class! Still to this day, I think of all little happy notes as Happy Grams.
I have been wanting to make a fun little note pad holder using the Sizzix Hanging Bag die for a while now. I wanted to create a cheerful little piece that I could hang on the refrigerator to hold a note pad that would help encourage everyone in my house to write more Happy Grams to each other.
To construct the pocket, I adhered patterned paper to piece of mat board using adhesive sheets. After die cutting the pieces, I sanded and inked the edges and then assembled the pocket according to the package instructions.
To embellish the pocket, I decided to include a bluebird on the design. I love bluebirds and their symbolism of happiness. I decided to use the Sizzix Bird die for this project. Today I want to share with you how I colored the bird.
To begin, die cut two birds from grungepaper. Apply a generous base coat of Picket Fence Distress Stain. After applying the ink, dry each bird with a heat tool.
Apply Wild Honey Distress Stain to the beak area of one of the birds. Apply Vintage Photo Distress Stain to the legs of the same bird. Heat the ink to dry it.
Use an ink blending tool to ink the edges of the beak and over the legs.
On the second bird, apply Broken China Distress Stain over the bird's body.
After drying the stain, apply Stormy Sky Distress Stain along the top edge of the bird (along its back and the top of its head). Dry the stain with a heat tool.
Add Faded Jeans Distress Stain to the top edge of the bird's back and the top of it's head. Dry the stain with a heat tool.
Apply Scattered Straw Distress Stain along the chin and belly of the bird. Heat dry the stain.
Trim off the legs and beak of the blue bird.
Use an ink blending tool to apply Vintage Photo Distress Ink to the edges of the bird's body. The wing may be lifted up to apply ink to the edge of it.
After both birds were dry, I adhered them together with glue. I covered the eye of the bird with a small round punched hole from the matboard pocket. You could fill it with a small brad also. I left the tip of the two tails slightly separated to add a bit of dimension.
To embellish my hanging notepad holder, I cut a piece of grungepaper using the Branch die. I colored with with Walnut Stain Distress Ink. After it was dry, I adhered it to the front of the pocket and placed the bird over it.
I tucked a small tag under the bird's wing. I also added some fine black pen lines to the legs to help define them. Finally, I added two small ribbon flowers to the branch.
Behind the bird, I added a die cut heart. Before die cutting the heart, I adhered patterned paper to a scrap of mat board. After die cutting I added my sentiment with letter stamps. I adhered the heart to the pocket behind the bird's head and added a few staples to anchor the piece to the design.
I added dyed crinkle ribbon to the holes in the pocket so that I could hang it.
I love the size of this pocket! It is perfect for a note pad but would also be great for holiday treats!
This week I am the guest currator on the Crescendoh blog (http://blog.crescendoh.com/crescendoh/). As part of my week, I created a project to share. I was working through some tough personal things at the time. It was a day that I was really struggling to find the words to make sense of what was happening in life. I decided to create an art journal page for my project and because I knew I couldn't find the words to journal I used words from the Superchick song Beauty from Pain. I find great comfort in the promise of that song that no matter what we are struggling to deal with that we can survive it and in the end we will find beauty from the pain.
(FYI- I am skipping the supply list on this one today because I didn't keep one as I worked. I just wanted to create without thinking about details like supplies. Pretty much everything is Sizzix, Tim Holtz, Ranger, Stampers Anonymous, and The Crafter's Workshop.)
I think as I worked on the page and added layers of colors, images, and elements that it became really reflective of my mood. It feels heavy and jumbled. I used black ink to darken one side of the page and let it fade as it moved across the page to blue sky.
The base of my page is a scrap piece of cardstock from my scrap bin that I had exprimented with misting on. I added a stenciled ledger design over the previous misting with black soot Distress Ink.
I used a scribbled distressed design stamp along the edges, which I think really adds to the mood of the page. I also applied a piece of printed tissue paper on the page that is wrinkled and scrunched.
To add branches, I used a scrap piece of cardstock from my scrap bin. After I cut it I realized the back side had paint on it. I loved the look so I flipped the piece over to show the paint.
I used two branch sections. For one, I decided to only adhere it at the base and let the rest of it just lay on the surface. It gave it added dimension.
The bluebird is a symbol of happiness so I wanted there to be one on the page. Though she is small and kind of over shadowed by the other elements, she is there lurking and ready to fly again.
I used a die cut tag to help my text stand out. I used manila cardstock and dabbed on distress stain randomly to add a bit of color.
It has been a couple of weeks since I made this page and when I look at it, I can still see the sadness in it. But more importantly, I can see how art was there for me when I needed to somehow express what was in my heart but I wasn't able to find the words to say it. Creating the page and losing myself in the inks and stamps and elements helped me to function and do something when I wasn't sure I could. It was comforting to have this outlet to run to.
Many times I have thought about Crescendoh's motto of Art Saves and wondered what my story would be. In a strange twist, I was invited to tell my story at a time when I was working through a big and real heart ache. As I worked on this page it suddenly came to me, "When words fail, Art Saves". It has been true for me many times in life but never more so than this day when creating this page gave my heart a voice and a safe harbor.
If you would like to read my Art Saves story, you can find it here: http://blog.crescendoh.com/art_saves/2012/06/when-words-fail-art-saves-by-tammy-tutterow.html
I am so thrilled to be the guest curator this week at Crescendoh. I hope you will visit me there each day for a look at my daily inspiration picks. I created a project to share there and will be back tomorrow with a post here about it.
Today I am thrilled to be participating again in another blog hop with The Crafter's Workshop featuring the amazing designs of Julie Fei-Fan Balzer. This week we are featuring the Flower Piecing stencil. For my project I used the small 6x6 version.
Be sure to check out all of the blogs on the hop this week:
For my project, I decided to use the stencil as a template to emboss foil. The technique is easy to do and gives a lot of wow to a project. I used my foil piece on a tag, but it could easily be used on a card front or decor piece.
To begin, place a piece of metal foil tape on a foam pad (the back side of my Rub It Scrub It). Add a bit of tape to keep it in place.
Place the stencil over the foil. I added tape to keep it in place.
Use an embossing stylus to trace around the inside edges of the stencil design. The soft base of the foam pad allows the stylus to press into the metal and create an indention.
After all of the design has been traced, remove the foil from the foam pad.
Use a paint dabber to apply a light coat of paint on to the foil, making sure to get paint into the indentions.
Allow the paint to set for a minute and then wipe it away with a dry towel. Adhere the foil to the front of the tag (or card front).
To create the tag topper, place the stencil on a scrap of smooth white cardstock. Use an ink applicator to apply color over the stencil onto the paper.
Cut a piece of the inked paper to cover the top of the tag. Use a hole punch to punch the hole in the tag top through the inked paper.
To add color to the foil, use alcohol ink markers (I used Copic Markers) to color in the design.
To get bold colors, you may need to apply multiple coats of the marker ink, allowing each coat to dry before the next.
As an added touch, place silver brads through the centers of each of the large flower designs.
Stamp a word on a piece of scrap paper (I used a scrap of vintage ledger paper). Tear and ink the edges of the paper. Cut a flower shape from the scrap of the inked paper and attach it with a brad. Clip the finished word piece to the tag with a mini paper clip.