Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Earth is not flat.....

No, the earth is not flat and I haven't fallen off the edge of it! I've had several friendly "nudges" to post what we got up to at the retreat in Melbourne and I have a couple of spare hours this Sunday morning so..... post I will! It's not because I haven't wanted to attend to my blog, time has been very short this last week. I arrived home utterly exhausted from a wonderful week in Melbourne. Three days spent at the most fabulous retreat that I've ever been to, two days spent in Ballarat with the lovely Jenny Crossley, then another couple of days shopping & sight-seeing back in Melbourne with Julie from Albany & also Jenny Crossley. We also managed to catch a show - Billy Elliott...excellent show, thoroughly loved it!

The retreat was just so well run, organisation was top-notch, accommodation was perfectly fine but oh those tutors!!!! Talk about uber-talent!!! I spent two days doing classes with the most delightful DJ Pettit. The first was a journal class where we painted the covers, wrapped the signatures, created the spine then joined it all together with a book-binding stitch to create a journal to work in. Sunday was another class with DJ, a face painting class....a rather daunting project for more than a few of us! After walking around the class late in the day it was apparent how superb DJ was as a teacher, everyone's faces were simply wonderful and our fears were certainly unfounded! If you check out her blog you'll see how great a job we all did, alas I am one of the 4 that didn't get a photo done for her blog...not sure how I missed that one? But the photo is included below.

The face from DJ's face painting class - done on a 6" x 6" canvas board...

Cover of DJ's journal class. This still needs some work, I need to smudge my charcoal around the dead man and attach beads etc to the strings hanging from the stitching and also add more to the signature wrappings. As you may or may not know, I'm not a flowery type of person so I wasn't going to do butterflies, flowers, hearts, birds etc on my journal...not that I'm against these, they just aren't my style. My journal is called "Road kill" so you have the obligatory "flat man", the blood splatter on the right, the running man stencilled up the top and on the back cover it says "Time Runs Out". How true!!! Remember, hug your girlfriends, tell your parents how much they mean to you, it lasts such a short time!

Front cover...
Front and back cover..

Inside of book with first signature wrapping. Dj was generous enough to hand out small pictures of her faces so we could stitch them in with our signatures. What a lovely person she is!

Bernie, DJ & Stephanie...
View from Amberley back verandah...

The final day was spent doing a wonderful technique based class with the effervescent and very talented Bernie Berlin, the author of Artist Trading Card Workshop - an absolute must for a techique junkie like me!!! Bernie's blog is not about her art, it's about her shelter than she runs for animals where she and her team rescue dogs from puppy mills and other high-risk situations to save their lives. What a wonderful woman she is, so very generous, friendly, talented but the devotion and her love of animals is what makes Bernie absolutely radiate! I think there should be a Saint named after her, Saint Bernie, patron saint of dogs....okay, I already know there is a patron saint of dogs (Saint Roch) but I think there's room for one more! Her class was wonderful and I learnt a new way of doing a background technique and another way to plough through my gel medium faster than ever!!! Below are the results from Bernie's class.


#2...close-up of #2...

#3 (my favourite!!!)...

close-up of #3...

...and another....

For those of you who are interested in attending the 2010 Creative Soul Retreat, here is the link with all the info about the classes etc. General registrations open on the 17th of April. I'll see you there!!!

Last week was my father-in-law's 90th birthday! As both my husband and myself were away at the time, we celebrated his birthday yesterday by taking both him and my MIL to Rottnest, along with my brother-in-law, his girlfriend and my nephew. We met up with a family friend over there who was staying on Rotto for a couple of weeks holiday where he bought us a tray of freshly caught crayfish so we could enjoy them for lunch with a fresh crusty loaf from the bakery. The way they all devoured the crays I could tell they were excellent! Can't speak from experience as I don't eat them...or prawns, oysters or anything else like that. Fish I do, other stuff from the ocean I don't...unless they come on a surfboard!!! (Who am I kidding, in my younger days yes, now.....nope! Though one can dream...... lol)
So here's a picture of Geordie Bay where we ate lunch under a beach shelter...

A little Island local, a baby quokka. These are very tame and everywhere on the island though I wouldn't try picking one up, they do have little teeth and are probably very germy! Cute though!

Tomorrow is my Mum's 70th birthday so today is a birthday celebration for her.....birthday's galore around here!!! Next time I post I'll have pics of the Mica class that is coming up next.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Clear embossing & Rub'n'buff

I have only 2 more sleeps to go before leaving for the Creative Soul Retreat in Melbourne!!! I am really, REALLY, looking forward to catching up with some old friends, meeting new ones for the first time and schmoozing with the wonderful tutors....fingers crossed some of their creative genius will rub off and I can learn some new stuff and have it not actually FEEL like I'm learning! It'll be really nice to be a "student" for a change. ;-)

I won't be missing any of the atc classes while I'm away, serendipitously it worked out that the retreat fell in an in-between week of my teaching so that's great! Though I have had to be super organised and do all the prep work for the next class....which is "Clear Embossing & Rub'n'buff"! Here are the samples for the class, they came up better than I thought they would.

"Life is an Island"...(stamp from Rough Draft plate by Green Pepper Press....~waving~ Hi Michelle!!!)

"Fortune, Fame, Love"... (I have had this huge circular stamp for ages and it's the first time I've used it, sorry... I don't know who it's by? The photo corners are from Julie's 'Collections' range - available at Scraptivate, and I've embossed them with the cuttlebug folder "Textile")
"Rouge"...(the wonderful Svetlana gave this stamp to me and the stamp company name escapes me...Svetlana, please leave me a comment and say which company it's from in case someone MUST have it.)

"Science"... (Leonardo's Vitruvian Man stamp by Cherry Pie)

"Melancholy Moments... (Paris Moments stamp by Hampton Arts. There's that black texture paste again!!! lol)

"Gastric"... (Beautiful fine script stamp from Delish in the background on this one and I used one of Julie's 'Collections' houses to highlight the image - from Scraptivate again. The house was run through the cuttlebug with the Textured Branches folder that embossing folder!)

"Wild Life"... (Tim Holtz Nature's Moments plate from Stampers Anonymous)

I won't be blogging while I'm away as I'm leaving my laptop at home (on purpose) but I expect I'll have some great pics to show when I get back. The main thing to remember when stepping out of your comfort zone for some wonderful arty time is "must take pictures"!!!!! I'm only gone for a week so I'm sure the time will just zip by.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

More Brushless Watercolour

I had such a great time with this technique I just kept on playing with it, so I have some more samples to show you. But firstly, there is yet one more Alcohol Ink & Transparency atc from the last class, this was the raffle one for the Thursday class.

Onto the Brushless Watercolour atc's.
"Ornate"... (stamp by Lost Coast Designs)

"Chaos"... (head stamp by Lost Coast Designs & a few watch parts, background stamp by Green Pepper Press - Rough Draft plate)

"Indulge"... (stamp by Zetti, plus the ubiquitous Black Texture Paste!!!)

"In the Moment"... (stamps from Tim Holtz Nature's Moments plate). For this one I did the Brushless Watercolour stamping on the underneath white card, then stamped the quote onto a piece of Vellum, stitched the vellum to the coloured card and added some Swarovski crystals to the left. This would make a nice card technique!

These are the raffle atc's, they are 2 separate atc's made with the one large stamp 'Dragonfly Legend' by Stampers Anonymous (page #5).

"Dragonfly" set 1... (I've used Antique Linen Distress Stickles on the wing on the left card and also on the body on the right card - very subtle glass-like shimmer and great texture!)

"Dragonfly" set 2... (I've used Gold micro beads on the left card and the right card below - click for a close-up!)

So that's it until I post my next ones for the Clear embossing & rub'n'buff class. These are notoriously difficult to scan or photograph so I don't know how we'll go with that. Until then, either stay warm if you are in the States with all that snow, or stay cool if you are over East of Australia with the bushfires & heat!