Monthly Archives: May 2016

Life Book 2016 – Week 23

Your Inner Wizard with Jenny Grant

This week’s lesson was delightful!  Jenny is a new artist to me.  Her art is so ethereal.  I love her grungy style.  There are so many layers in my painting, I think I got heavy-handed again with the gold highlights.

I love the see through effect I got in some places.  I started out collaging papers – which I found very meditative.  Then I used acrylic paint to stamp several layers on the corners with foam stamps.  I let those dry, then added more colors in complimentary hues.


After those layers dried, I drew the face with a stabilo all black pencil, then I added flowers with molding paste through a stencil.  I couldn’t find the stencil I like, so I picked a bigger one because the face I drew only used half of the canvas and I didn’t want to leave a large empty space.  I also used a Tim Holtz stencil with white molding paste and waited for it to dry.  Then, I smoothed it down using fine sand paper.


I also added a single flower on the lower left side.  I really love that all the layers can be seen here. I dripped some see throuogh liquid acrylic paint for contrast and to give it a grunch look, but I was afraid I would drip too much on the face; afterwards I thought I should have dripped some paint on the side of her face.  In this photo you can see the different media I used including the sketching.


 I added Quinacridone / Nickel Azo Gold for a reddish gold hue, and sepia acrylic color to the edges to frame it.  To make it shine, I used gold acrylic paint on the surface of the dried stenciled molding paste.  I just love all the layers that can be seen in the lower right corner.


Lastly, I added translucent white acrylic paint on her face and some white highlights on her upper eye lids, bellow her eyebrows, on her nose and a bit on her lips.


Since I used a 12×12 flat canvas, I’m going to buy a frame for it because this is one of my favorite paintings so and probably more to come!

Thanks for coming by, and please leave me a comment.  I want to know what you think.

Have an awesome week and be crafty!


Life Book 2016 – Week 22 with Kristin Dudish


a game for facing your fears….


This week’s lesson was taught by Kristin Dudish.    I added a link to her facebook page because we’ve been having issues with the NING site and cannot download the class or any of the links.

But that’s all right because Tamara gave us another link to download the lessons and the PDFs.

I found this class very interesting and enjoyable.  We had to take a picture and divide it in 2 inch squares.  I loved doing this because when I was younger I loved to take puzzles like these and see if the final picture looked like the picture in the magazine.

I’m obsessed with Frida Kahlo and there are some great black and white pictures of her.  I googled her and came up with this one.


I cut her up in 2×2 inch squares and using another paper with 2×2 blank squares I proceeded to draw and paint what I saw.  Shapes –  triangles, squares, circles, lines; no flowers, eyes, chins, etc. – just shapes. The media I used were, watercolor crayons, regular crayola crayons, prima coloring pencils, charcoal, plain pencil, pastels, oil pastels, water-color pastels, a regular ball point pen, watercolor pencils, black india ink, acrylic paints, and dots done with a pen.


This is a closeup.  You can see some of the media was hard to match up to the different squares, but I thoroughly enjoyed playing this morning.  I can see where I need to pay closer attention to the different shapes so they can match up better.


That’s it for this weeks lesson

I’ll be playing with this technique again, for sure!

Thanks for stopping by.  Please leave me a note, either way, I love to read comments.

See ya’ next time.


It’s Graduation Time!!

Here are some graduation cards I’ve made in recent days.  I helped some friends to make some too, but I forgot to take pictures!

 First off is for a young man – masculine card


His school colors are purple and gold, but he also went to a magnet school with blue so ci added them to the sentiment.  The circle stamps are Tim Holtz, and the 2016 are Unity Stamps.  I also added some gold sequins.


I also a Unity Stamp for the inside quote.


This one is for a girl.  Her school colors are red and blue.  I cut the balloons out with my circle dies added some yarn and the black cap with the a red tassel.


I got my inspiration for this card from a card I saw at  My Creative Time blog hop.  I  used a torn piece of paper in the shape of clouds and using a sponge, I colored them with Broken China distress ink.  I then added the embellishments on the base.  The Celebrate stamp is an older Stamp’n Up stamp.  I also added yarn for the balloons’ strings.  I also stamped inside the balloons.


On the inside I stamped this new stamp by Unity Stamps.  I received the set just in time to make my cards!

BA inside

This one is for a young lady who is graduating from college.

I used a Julie Nuttig doll stamp and a brand new face stamp to fit these girls from Peachy Keen.  It firs perfectly!  I used watercolor paper I then colored the face with watercolor pencils, and pieced together her dress  and shoes to match the background.  Her aunt said she likes purple, so I made purple the accent color.  I then added a small ribbon around the waist and a graduation cap.


Close up of the graduate.


The face


the sentiment along with her diploma.


Last, but not least, the card I made for my grandson.  It had to be special!

I used black and gold because those were the colors on his Graduation Announcement and the invitations.  The stamp on the left is a Unity stamp.  I didn’t have anymore graduation paper so I stamped the diploma, caps, words, and stars on white cardstock with gray ink.


I got this quote from and added it to the inside of the card.


As a gag gift, I enclosed a small envelope with some graduation embellishments  I found at JoAnn’s.  It had a small driver’s license and a set of keys in heavy cardstock.  I glued them on a piece of cardstock and glued a miniaturized graduation picture of him.


Then I put it inside another small envelope with gold chipboard sentiments and stars.

CongratsEnvelope Yay

I’m waiting to see how he reacts to it.  I also added on the back of the small envelope under the flap:  “Patience is a virtue.”  Just saying!

Looks like I’m caught up with all my graduation cards!!

Thanks for coming by and until next time,

happy crafting!


Life Book 2016 – Weeks 19 – 21

I’m back with Life Book 2016, but hadn’t had a chance to post my lessons because I’ve been busy making graduation cards for the kids in my congregation and especially my grandson’s.  I will post those pictures later.

Week 19 – Your Normal is Not the World’s Normal – With

Wyanne Thompson

Oh my!  This lesson really touched my heart because Wyanne has gone through a life changing event.  In 2013 she was diagnosed with head and neck Cancer.  The doctor gave her a choice of undergoing a 12 hour radical surgery, chemo, and radiation or saying goodbye.  She decided on surgery and had her whole tongue removed plus many lymph nodes.  She had to take a year off to recuperate and now she has a feeding tube to help her get liquid food.  I admire her so much!

When I heard her story about her husband fussing over her coughing, she just told him it was normal, but her husband said “Your normal is not the world’s normal” which gave her a jolt, it reminded me about what I went through eight years ago.

I also had that experience after I had my mastectomy.  Three days after I came home from the hospital, I developed a high fever that knocked me off my feet.  My husband, who took very good care of me through the whole nine yards, took me back to the surgical clinic and it was determined that I had an infection at the site of the wound.  One of the surgical interns proceeded to squeeze out the pus out of the wound and insert gauze.  They also sent a sample of the pus to the lab for culture.  This event was worse than my mastectomy!  Then he sent me home with antibiotics and gauzes so my husband could clean out the wound twice a day.

Thee days after getting home from the pus squeezing, I developed another fever, so back we went to the emergency room this time.  Since I was still recuperating, they put me in an isolation room and the doctor returned with the results of the culture and informed us that it was MRSA, a flesh-eating bacteria.  They changed my medication and sent me home to return and see my surgeon again in five days.

During those five days I was so depressed and felt like crying all the time.  Finally I went to see the surgeon and as he was examining me I told him I just want to get back to normal.  And he said to me, “This is your new normal.”

So, I know exactly what Wyanne was talking about.  When you realize that you will never be the same person ever again, it jolts you back to reality – a new reality.

But, anyway, let’s get back to lesson 19.

Since Wyanne has no tongue, she tries her best to talk, but she can’t be understood, so her lesson had captions to help us follow her instructions.  I really had to pay attention with this one!

Wyanne, taught a new technique; drawing a face, then using tracing paper to copy the drawing, but then attaching the tracing paper to the side of the watercolor paper and adding india ink to it then smooshing it to the watercolor paper.  She said this technique was made famous by Andy Warhol.  After the india ink dried, we used watercolors and washi tape for the embellishments.

This is my project. I’m afraid of spiders, so I drew a tarantula and put her right on my shoulder – it seems harmless enough!


The Lotus represents the scar I have from my Mastectomy.


After posting this, I realized this girl either has no pupils or her pupils are dilated, LOL.  She has a strong character, though!

Week 20 – Bonus: Expressive Mixed Media Portrait with Pauline Agnew

This week Pauline showed us how to draw an expressive portrait using a picture from a portrait one of the masters painted.

I googled “portrait of a girl painted by the Masters,” and I liked this one the best, but I forgot to write down who the artist was 😦

I then proceeded to very carefully draw the girl using an Inktense pencil in black, indigo, and brown.  As much as I tried, I couldn’t get the angle of the face just right, but I did manage to follow along with Pauline and using her direction, this is what I came up with.


The background was made by smooching some paint from a pallet paper and giving it a twist.  I did several smoochings until I came out with one I could use.


I think she has a serene look and I like it a lot!  Although some people are entitled to their opinions, one person said it was a bunch of BS.  I don’t care, I love how this came out, don’t you?


 Week 21 – Her Light Shines Brightly with Renata Loree


Oh my!  This was intimidating and very creative!!  I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making girls with different head positions and this is exactly what I had to do in this one.

Renata is also a past Life Book student. It’s really amazing how she has grown and developed her art work.  Now she is teaching!  I’ve seen some of her work in other places and I’ve been wanting to make girls that look like they’re glowing and looking up.  Renata was so generous because she was very accommodating.  She had two different lessons.  In the first video she showed us how to do a face looking up, but if we found it difficult, she also posted a front facing face and different techniques!  I thought that was awesome!

The lesson was done completely in watercolor, with the exception of using a stencil to transfer the different objects on the page.  I tried three different girls.  The first one I did without editing myself.  I just went through the whole lesson following her instructions.  There were different aspects I like about each one.  In the first one, I liked how the hands turned out, but not the face as you can see here.

Girl #1

I didn’t even finish her because I thought I would give it another try.  I do like the background stencil, but her neck was too long.  I did not draw a mandala because I’m terrible at it and I don’t feel comfortable doing it, but I took a stencil that was not proportionate and outlined it with a pencil then added the different colors on it.


She is not looking up, she’s looking at me, but her hands are great!


Girl #2

On this one, I love the softness of the watercolors and that you can see the Lotus I stenciled in, but the hands look out of proportion.  This girl is looking up, though.  Doesn’t she look like she’s coming out of the water?

Lotus Girl

Girl #3

Ah, this one looks so much better looking straight on, but her hands looks like a cartoon character’s hands,   For this one I took my time laying down the watercolors then applying a sticky Martha Stewart stencil and running gesso through it.  It was fantastic the way it came out!  The lines were crisp and bright.  I also used the gesso to simulate the light rays.  Because of the purple watercolor I used on the background, I couldn’t get her face to look right, but, hey, it’s not real!


There you have it, my crafty friends, three lessons in one post.

Thank you for sticking with me until the end.

I hope to see your comments, which make me very happy!

Until next time, happy crafting!!


PS After I finished writing this post, Renata posted on our private FB page that we can make the colors more transparent and make it like she’s shining by spraying some water on the piece and taking a paper towel and lightly lifting some of the color off.  I’m going to try that for sure!!


Gathering of Nations Pow-Wow 2016, Albuquerque, NM

Hello my blogging friends!  I took a week off after the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow in Albuquerque, NM to catch up with my Life Book 2016 lessons, but now I’m back.  First off:

Gathering of Nations

This event is a Federally recognized non-profit organization to promote Native American culture.  I didn’t know what to expect, but I was thoroughly in awe of all the beautifully intricately beaded garments and accessories.

For more information about this event you can go here:  Gathering of Nations.  There were dancers and singers representing more than 500 tribes in North America and Canada.  It is a three-day event, but we only went on Saturday and part of Sunday.

Here are some pictures I took of people walking around the stadium.  I asked permission to take their picture, of course.

These beauties were from  Minnesota



This young girl was on her way to the main floor to dance in the young girls competition.



Look at the beading work on these moccasins.  They were completely hand beaded.  Just beautiful!


Mexico was represented also.  Look at the long feathers!!


I had many more pictures, but somehow they are lost in my file system.

Well, you get the idea.  If you want to see more pictures. you can always go the link above.

Thanks for stopping by