The Crayola Crayon Challenge

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know I belong to this mail art trading site ATCs for All (AFA). Within the AFA site I belong to a group called Envie Addicts Unite (EAU). In EAU we are paired with a parnter each month and we send them envelope that we “art” on. Check out the EAU Pinterest Board to see the art we’ve been doing for the past three years. My friend Melissa hosts this group and I am kind of like her assistant.

One of the fun things we do for this group is post daily inspiration (art videos, tutorials, challenges, pins, etc.). Today I posted a You Tube video for a Crayon Challenge. I decided I would also participate in the Crayon Challenge, but I didn’t make a video about it. I just took a couple of pictures instead.

So to begin with, I used my Strathmore Mixed Media Visual Journal to sketch out my drawing.


Then I pulled out my box of Crayolas and pulled out some of the crayon colors I would be using.


Well, this is my end result…Seashells in Crayon. Let me know what you think. I’d love to hear about it if you decide to challenge yourself with crayons too.



Sharing Art

So, a friend of mine on AFA (ATCs for All) put out a call for artwork. She has a friend who has been feeling depressed and lonely lately and wanted to cheer her up. So the theme of the art is supposed to be friendship.

I decided to create some “Love” birds and the style I used is inspired by artist Cori Dantini. I used Copic and Prismacolor Premier markers on a 5″ x 7″ piece of smooth Bristol. I also decided to put a matching bird on the envelope. Here is what I came up with. I’d love to hear what you think.



I’m back!

I guess I’ve been MIA lately. I don’t really have a good reason for it either. Not to worry though as I still have been making art in my absence. I thought I’d post a little bit of what I’ve been up to.

So I’ve been taking a fabulous monthly watercolor workshop with Joyce Thomas. She paints really fresh watercolors and I just love her work. So far I’ve attended three of her workshops. Here are the paintings I did in the workshops:

Door-and-Window-lg Hummingbird_Painting copy Lighthouse

Let me know what you think about them. ūüôā

Cooking Some Glass!

So I’ve been experimenting with fusing glass. I have a Paragon SC2 Glass Kiln and I’ve had it a couple of years, but haven’t really used it. I guess I was intimidated by it. I’m still trying to learn about the ramp settings, which to me are very confusing!

Here is the kiln I have (Paragon SC2 with Bead Door and Window):


Here is the firing schedule I used for this batch of glass (COE 90):

Segment      Rate     Temperature     Hold Time (in minutes)
1                  400F     1250F              30
2                  600F     1480F              10
3                  Full        900F                60
4                  150F     700F                 0 (end)

Now don’t ask me to explain this firing schedule or what any of it means because I really don’t have any idea. I’ve been finding different firing schedules online and trying them hoping to find one that gives me the results I’m looking for.

Here are some pictures of my glass before firing and after firing. Some of the pieces experienced problems during the firing. I will make notations of those things along with the pictures.

This first piece was an epic fail! I saw this picture of a beautiful pendant on Pinterest by Carrie Strope and thought I would try to create something similar. So I layered glass stringers between two pieces of clear glass. As you can see my piece looks NOTHING like the inspiration piece. In fact, my piece didn’t even fully fuse.


This second piece is probably my favorite piece from this batch. It has a base of clear glass. The next layer contains to pieces of orange glass and a piece of glass stringer. The third layer has a piece of clear patterned dichroic glass. Then it is top with another piece of clear glass.


This piece would have been really nice if it weren’t for the huge air bubble between the bottom two flower millifiori. This piece contains some dichroic glass. One thing I love about dichroic (which literally means two colors) is that it reflects different colors when you turn it. However, you never know what color it is going to end up after firing.¬† If you look at the before picture the dichroic glass appears a yellow/orange color and after it was fired it became a beautiful turquoise color. It also contains millifiori (which literally means thousand flowers and is an ancient Italian glass making technique). On this piece I began with a base of white glass. On top of that I placed the three pieces of millifiori and the two pieces of flat dichroic. I topped it off with a piece of clear glass. I’ve since learned that having that much “empty” space on the middle layer is what can cause air bubbles.


This piece came out pretty good. It has a base of black glass followed by two pieces of dichroic and a piece of green opaque glass. I topped it off with a piece of clear glass. Again, notice how that yellow/orange piece of dichroic glass (same kind as in the above piece) turned that beautiful turquoise color.


This piece began with a white base. On top of that I placed a blue-green piece of textured dichroic (on black) glass and then topped it off with a piece of clear glass. There was a slight fusing proglem with piece. If you look in the third picture you’ll see where the clear glass didn’t completely encase the dichroic glass. This probably could have been resolved by using a slightly bigger piece of clear glass.


This next piece really shows dichoric glass at work. I used a piece of flat purple dichroic (on black) glass for the base. On top of that a placed a small piece of that same yellow/orange dichroic and topped it off with a piece of clear glass. The white dot you see in the before picture is just white glue I used to hold the pieces together for transferring to the kiln. I think this piece actually came out quite beautiful with it’s magenta and turquoise colors.


This next piece is a lot different from the ones I’ve shown you so far. I began with a clear base and put two different pieces of green glass on the top and bottom (one was a solid green and the other one was kind of streaked with other colors). In the middle of the two green pieces of glass I put light adventurine green medium frit (which is broken up glass pieces). I then topped it off with clear glass. Again, those white dots you see on the before picture are just white glue, which burns off in the kiln. This piece is more beautiful in real life as the frit and the bottom piece of glass both sparkle, almost as if they contain glitter.


This next piece began with a base of red glass. On top of that I placed a piece of dichroic (on black) and dichroic (on clear) glass at each end. Then I topped it off with scrap clear glass. The scrap pieces of clear glass ended up being a bad choice as it posed a couple problems during the firing process. You’ll notice in the before picture on both the left and right sides there is a little chip in the clear glass pieces. This chip caused the clear glass to not fully enclose the ends of the dichroic glass. Also if you look at the before picture you’ll see that the bottom of the middle piece of clear glass is longer than the two side pieces. If you look at the finished piece you’ll see that middle protrudes a little. I guess this piece was a real learning experience.


This next piece was another learning experience. This piece began with a clear base where I set four pieces of blue transparent glass on top and placed a millifiori in the center and then topped it with scrap clear glass. I was planning on the finished piece to have a clear window in the center showcasing the millifiori, but that was not what I got. The blue glass melted right up to the millifiori. I suppose I should have surrounded the millifiori with clear glass to sort of dam back the blue glass. Also the scrap clear top posed a similar problem as in the piece above. On this piece the problem was where the two pieces of scrap glass met up, but were not flush with each other. In fusing these two pieces the millifiori got distorted.


This next piece did not seem to have any problems. I began with a multi-colored base. I put a green piece and a blue piece of opaque glass together. I got this idea from the Dichroic Glassman on YouTube. I then put two different pieces of textured dichroic glass and two small piece of glass (one amber colored transparent and one green opaque). I topped it off with a piece of clear glass.


This next piece began with a clear base. I then put a piece of that streaked (sparkly) green glass in the middle, with two pieces of the orange/yellow textured dichroic on either side. At the top I used the light adventurine green medium frit again. This piece fired nicely without any problems. Again in real life the frit and the middle piece really sparkle.


This next piece is probably my second favorite piece out of this batch. It began with a clear base. I then put two pieces of green opaque glass on either side. The middle I filled with frit (Sushi color blend) and top the piece with clear glass. It think this piece turned out beautiful.


This next piece began with a black base. I then put three millifiori in varying sizes down from the top. I put a sliver of flat dichroic glass on the right of the millifiori and a piece of the same color down at the bottom. I then topped it off with clear glass. The dichroic is actually more pink than red in real life. The little sliver actually melted over to the side so you really can’t see it in the finished piece.


This final piece of glass began with a white base of which I put a piece of flat dichroic (on black) glass on top followed by a clear piece of glass. I was kind of surprised how much the piece of dichroic glass expanded over the top of the piece of white glass. I thought more white glass would be showing through in the finished piece. Other than my expectations, the piece fired just fine.


So if their are any fused glass artists out there reading my blog, I would welcome any tips and advice you could give to this novice glass fuser.

Which piece is your favorite out of the batch?

My Newest Creations

So this week I made up some Mixed Media hearts for a swap on ATCs For All. I took a piece of 9″ x12″ 140 lb. watercolor paper and painted it with different colors of acrylic paint. I sprayed on some spray inks, used some stencils and did some stamping. I then cut out a bunch of different shaped hearts. I took six of those hearts and did some pen work (with a Molotow 1mm white acrylic paint pen. For the final touch I added a Stickles border to each heart. Here is what they looked like.


My next activity for the week was to make a gift for my nephew John and his wife Brandi’s baby shower. My nephew is a US Marine and they are having a boy so I thought some camouflage burp pads would be appropriate. Once side is cotton camouflage fabric and the other side is tan flannel. Here is how they turned out.


Since I already had the sewing machine out I figured I take on one more project. A friend of mine posted some images of fabric/quilted postcards as well as I’ve seen some on Pinterest. I decided to give one a try. Now I am definitely no seamstress and really haven’t done any free motion quilting so please don’t laugh at my lack of skill in that department. Overall I think the postcard came out nice. Here is the final result. I even mailed it to a friend.


Happy New Year!

Okay, so I am a little late in wishing you all a Happy New Year! I can’t believe it is already 2015. I wonder what happened to 2014.

I’ve decided to suspend Tag It Thursday’s for now. I’m accumulating a bunch of tags and making them has become kind of boring for me. So with a new year I am on to new things.

Today, I wanted to share my newest adventure with you. I’ve been spying some beautiful Bible Journaling on Pinterest. Since I am a Christian and I do read and study the Bible, I decided I’d like to get in on this art form. Right before Christmas I went ahead and ordered the Crossway ESV (English Standard Version) Single Column Journaling Bible. Today I finally had the courage to write in it. Now if you check out my Pinterest board (linked above) on this subject you will see many beautifully illustrated Bible pages. However, today I was not quite that brave and I opted to just do some lettering from my notes on the last few weeks of sermons at my church. I hope to be braver the next time. Here is what I did:

Romans12-2 Romans13-2