Thursday, December 22, 2016

Black Swan Outfit Design

Today's painting experiment turned into a picture of beauty. I had opened Corel Painter essentials to experiment with the blending tools, but found myself also exploring the brushes. A little experimentation later I had a dress, and then I worked on a form.

I call this Black Swan, the name specifically having to do with the gown. I challenged myself to make nice looking skin in Corel Paint, found it was tricky. After getting my black haired beauty, I gave her an outline and also a version of her dress with a hat.
The hat was a result of brush experiments, my strokes accidentally turning into what looked like a feathered hat.

I aimed for a Nouveau like style with an advertisement setting in mind. I ended up experimenting with that idea and got a concept box cover for expensive mascara.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Pizza Planet Collages

(Dec. 2, 2016)
Time to talk about the Pizza Planet collage series. I've dated the pieces according to what day I finished them, which is pretty much one after the other over a period of four days.
I'm not sure why I decided to do these, but I felt a spontaneous urge to use up the scraps of Pizza box left from when I made tags for the Lime Grocery book. Something about it seemed oddly fun, even if the pictures don't make total sense to the eye of anyone else but myself.
Above is the first picture I started, and have named it "Out of this world pizza"(measures 12x6''). The flying saucer larger than nearby planets is the mother ship of alien beings from some far off universe. Who knows what the ship is doing in this scene-preparing for takeover, calling home, observing other planets in the nearby solar system as part of a peaceful culture study, lots of possibilities can apply.
The Culinary Circle symbols of the box reminded me of planets. That was the start and inspiration of the series. Any accents (stars and other details) added to the images were applied using jell pens and markers of different kinds.
(Dec. 3, 2016)
"Culinary Moons" (measures 12x6) the second collage made in the series, has to be one of my favorites. Like all of the images, I used scrapbook paper and parts of a pizza box to create the full picture.

I like to think that this image is a display of one of the inhabitants on one of the moons that the pizza ship is observing.

The woman is kneeling as she tells a dramatic story about the moons, her hands placed in such a way that to the eager listeners it appears she's throwing one of the moons into the air like a ball.
She may be telling a story about the moons, or for all we know, some people of this planet may be worshipers of the stars and celestial bodies. The story teller in her robes may be some kind of priestess, as her clothes might suggest, her belt/shawl a sign of authority.

Even sillier is that I think the words "ultra thin crust" are kind of like a description of how some of the ground is on these moons, thin and crackled over certain dry, desert like terrain. some of the land is treacherous due to the fact the earth is thin, and below in some valleys are underground caverns that cause the land above to cave in if even the slightest shift in weight occurs.

The rocks of the planet look kind of like fire, something I didn't intend, but it seems to add an interesting touch to the alien landscape.

Both images of the moon planet and the ship outside of it align to complete the culinary circle symbol. I found that to be a fun coincidence.
(Dec. 4, 2016)
"Sriracha Sunset" (12x9''). On one of the other moons, a dweller waves her control stick (a wand with buttons on it that also serves as a key) at the single person ship in the distance. She wants to make sure the ship is locked while she has a small lunch on the outdoor patio of the sriracha pizza palace.
I made a scan of the image before adding foreground elements, just to show the basic scenery built upon brown sketch paper with rocks and a colorful sky done in marker.
(Dec. 3, 2016)
"Pineapple Pizza Cruiser" (measures around 4x 2.5'') One of the small ships for search and observation missions sent out by the mother pizza ship. This cruiser is still pretty large for a spacecraft, and hovers above the terrain of the Culin Moon planet, searching for life.
(Dec. 5, 2016)
"Electric Live" (measures approximately 6x4'') , a poster for a music concert on the third, most advanced moon planet of the Culin solar system. The letters were scraps that I drew out and cut by hand, framed things with jell pen, and created the dancing disco robot using scraps of pizza box art and colored pencils. The title and theme were inspired by an actual music group, Electric Light Orchestra.
(Dec. 4, 2016)
"Lectri Bird" (left, measure approx. 3x 4.2'') "Srirar Moon Bird" (right, measures approx. 2.5x 3.5''). Also made using scraps, marker, and jell pen, these two peacock like bird species are of the Culin moons.

They could stand to be separate species, or the same, one being male and the other female. The larger Lectri bird would be the male, and their full name classification would be a "Sriarlectri". 
These birds were a result of me challenging myself to use the most minuscule of scraps, including the inverted part of the paper I used to create letters for my Electric Live image.

I imagine these pictures to be simplified representations of the birds, hieroglyphic images done by the inhabitants of the Culin moons. The male Lectri bird guards a nest and box of treasure placed on an alter. this bird may be a pet of someone's, and serves as a guard. The male's warning call is like an alarm which it sounds whenever someone gets too close to the nest, hence scaring off anyone trying to steal the treasure box.

Female Electri birds tend to be more active at night, and chirp different calls during each moon phase, tending to migrate wherever the moon shines brightest in a month. This is why the bird is shown looking up at the stars under the moon.
(Dec. 4-5, 2016)
"Shroom Juice" (Dec. 4, 2016-left, measures 2.5x 3.5''). 
"Mt. Culin Stamp" (Dec. 5, 2016- right, measures approx. 1.5x 1 3/8'').

 Even the smallest of scraps were used to create an ATC and a stamp sized image.

Shroom juice is some kind of odd drink on one of the Culin Moons, possibly a drink for health which can either aid an illness or cause you to feel ill if you don't need it.

Mt. Culin is a land mark of the Culin moon. The little man at the top of the mountain raises his arms in triumph after planting his flag in the ground upon reaching the top of the dusty, desert cliff among the cacti, a sign of strength.
(Dec. 4, 2016)
And finally "Star Port I.D." (measure approx. 4x4'') is essentially a badge you get for traveling in space craft leaving the Star Port, a celestial train station basically.
Since a lot of the shapes in these collage pieces may not be identifiable to the unknowing eye, I may create sketches of what I see when looking at the images, a way to help others see it too. :)

Friday, December 9, 2016

Elf Card Experiment

This year I tried to make a copy of the "Is It Cold In Here?" Elf collage card for sending out to someone. (The original and full collection can be seen on the post Elf Collage Christmas Cards). I started on the second of this month, but faced some complications while making the card. The first print was too light, I had to print it a second time, then when I tried making the snow sparkly, it came out pink the first time.

One problem after another seemed to occur, like I wasn't meant to send the card. Finally, after cutting a second piece of white paper twice, and glittering it with a clean embossing glue pad, I finished the card today. I didn't actually send it out, so it may be for next year.

Printing obviously doesn't result in a sparkly card, which is why I had to take steps of creating a sparkly embossed overlay of snow. I also accented the lettering and snow flakes with sparkly jell pens of silver, red, and light blue. Extra paper was snipped to add over the reflective spots of the globe, a way to make the illusion of this still being somewhat of a collage. 
Pink snow, I'll admit, is a lot weirder than yellow... The reason this happened is because the felt applicator of the embossing liquid I was using had been contaminated with red stamping ink. I guess that's just a reminder to always clean the tip after every use.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Lime Grocery Tags and Accessories

During my crafting on the Lime Grocery journal, I challenged myself to find ways of using every part of a piece of packaging, and created many tags, along with a few accessories.

I used packaging from Trader Joe's lime sicles, Ball Lids, Culinary Circle pizza, and Whole Foods paper bags. It seemed like a good idea to make collection sheets of these accessories in case I ever wanted to print extra for one of my books.

I offer these print out sheets as fun things for personal use only (right click and 'save as' to use). I don't own the designs of the packaging used to create these tags, cards, tabs, and other accessories, I simply put work into making the accessories themselves.
Lime skinny note cards and tag decor paper strips (left). Ball and Lime cards (right)
Lime book tabs (left). Lime tags (right). Those are my favorite accessories.
Culinary pizza tags and Whole Foods large paper bag tags.

Paper bag tags with a bit of collage.

Alongside the tags, I also made flags out of bags and stamped them with various designs and colors. I then created print pages of these. To use them they simply have to be cut out, folded down the middle, and glued together over a piece of twine (example shown above).

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Lime Grocery Book

Here's a fun journal made from all things recycled. The Lime Grocery Journal, named after its color and the fact its pages are made from paper grocery bags, was a fun experiment that led me to discover many different ways of using up scraps from the junk pile.

All materials used are from the recycling bin. The cover is scrap cardboard from some product packaging (a linkyo diffuser), paper bags from Whole Foods and Trader Joes, Popsicle boxes, Ball lid boxes, a bit of elastic thread, and some final touches using stamp inks and Liquitex varnish.

Enjoy a full video tour.

I added a little stamp to the back using stays on ink, and went over the letters with white jell pen. I thought it added a bit of cute interest to the book's back side (stamp is a very old sample stamp from a Stampin Up party).

I chose to do an exposed stitch on the spine, matching my thread choices with the color scheme. This is essentially hand made bakers twine, made by half successfully twisting green and white cording together. It could have been better, tighter, but I didn't have a little hand crank machine for making mini rope at the time.

The closure is made from white elastic thread which has been fed through two homemade cardboard buttons, and then knotted on the outside. The outer cardboard button kind of just hangs freely, and only has a single hole which both strands of elastic were fed through.

On the inside I used a lime green button with two holes. This one was made from part of a Lime fruit Floe's (Popsicle) box.

Like on the outside, I used sides of a Whole Food's bag to decorate the inner cover of the book. This has been sealed with Liquitex satin varnish. I really enjoy the look of the lettering in the egg shape.

From here on down you can peek at all the fun pages made entirely from paper bags with added items like tags made from small sections of packaging and paper bags. I found ways to make side tucks, corner tucks, and top loading pocket pages all throughout the book, using art aspects of the bags for interest.

The book contains three signatures in total and measures around 5.5x 5.5 in.

Find out about the process of making this book and its accessories on the post- Waste Nothing challenge- Lime Grocery Journal Process

I found fun ways to make tags from packaging like the Lime sicles box (shown right). There are three large tags in the book, two of them pull tab types and one of them a booklet like thing. Other tags were made from frozen pizza box cardboard and the tabs of a Lime sicle box.

I made lime tags, trading cards, and even Ball lid slip cards for adding notes to. I'm not quite sure what you can do with little tags and such, but it might be fun to use the book as a simple 'grocery list through the year' kind of book, with added notes on food.

Among all the fun brown paper bag tags made from scraps, I also made some print outs from a few scrap collage pieces I did, just for fun. There was also a small experiment of making little brown paper envelope bags for holding goodies that go into the book.

My adventures through crafting led to me finding ways to make little garland flags from scraps, book tabs, shakers, even the small strips leftover seemed like they could be used for decorating or adding to extra tags and writing spots. 

Also in the print outs collection I made some ATC cards from some Lime sicle box scraps and stamping, and tiny faux postal stamps created as mini collages. These just had to be scanned and printed.