It starts off one way but ends in another…

Hi friends! When I started this piece I thought I would end u make a background that I could crop a card front out of and then salvage some tags or bookmarks from the scraps but after the page was done I couldn’t beat to cut it!

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This was a really fun piece to create, watch the video to see it come alive!

This tutorial is sponsored by Top Flight Stamps!  SAVE 10% off your next order with coupon code: thefrugalcrafter10 *USA orders of $50+ ship free!

Supplies:

*I also used gloss gel medium and some iridescent paint but I don’t think it really added anything thank you can’t do with the inks I already listed. Feel free to substitute with similar products.

I hope you experiment with your supplies and don’t hold too tightly to what you originally plan if the artistic muse takes you in a different direction. Happy 4th of July to all my fellow Americans and til next time happy crafting!

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Colorful Fun ATCoins! And New Ways to use Distress Oxide Inks!

Hi friends! Today I am going to show you how I made these artist trading coins to bring with me to trade at the Heirloom Stamp Show in W. Springfield MA later this month.

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I had so much fun making these and even if you have no desire to make ATCoins you can use these techniques on cards or mixed media projects. They are messy and fun and the perfect way to play with your supplies! Watch the video to see how!

This tutorial is sponsored by Top Flight Stamps! SAVE 10% off your next order with coupon code: thefrugalcrafter10 *USA orders of $50+ ship free!

Supplies:

You can make the coin bases yourself if you don’t want to purchase wooden ones. They just need to be 2 1/2″ in diameter.  I recommend using a couple layers of cereal box chipboard for this. You can cut it with a die and glue them together so the raw sides are out and gesso it to prep it for paint or stamping. I might make some in this manner since I used up my MDF ones. These are fun and addictive and if you don’t want to trade them they would make a beautiful embellishment for a card or scrapbook page. I hope you try some of these techniques and til next time happy crafting!

Create Without Fear

Hi friends! I have been drawing and painting as long as I can remember. It never occurred me to be afraid to try a new art or craft. (OK, using my bead torch give me a healthy dose of fear if I am completely honest LOL!)

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I mean really, what’s the worst that can happen? You waste a bit of time and materials. So what? I can waste gobs of time watching TV or scrolling on social media. The art supplies are already bought and paid for and if you are looking at stuff like stamps and stencils and brushes then can be used over and over again indefinitely. You might be out a few cents in paper, paint or ink but that’s about it. In most cases, you can give it a coat of gesso and carry on. The REAL waste is your paint or markers or inkpads going unused on your shelf to dry up or go bad. Now that’s what I’m afraid of, not making a mess, unspent potential. I think a lot of fear comes from shame. Are you worried about embarrassing yourself or someone judging what you make? Simple, make your art just for you, there is no law saying that we have to share everything. If you are going to let some random on social media keep you from creating because you are afraid what they will think you need to either not share it or think about why they have so much power over your actions.  There is so much pressure on our lives today we need a space where we can learn, stumble, make a mess and grow without worrying what anyone else thinks. Right now, right where you are, is the perfect place to start. You will not get better without practice. You are not obliged to share your work. You ARE allowed to share it if you want to. This is YOUR journey, you decide. Remember, what you see online is people’s highlight reel. Give yourself a chance to succeed, I’m rooting for you!

This tutorial is sponsored by Top Flight Stamps! SAVE 10% off your next order with coupon code: thefrugalcrafter10 *USA orders of $50+ ship free!

Supplies:

Now, let me be completely honest with you. I am a weenie. I am afraid of so many things. But art, it ain’t one of them, in fact, I think it is the only place I am actually brave. I don’t know what my life would be like if I didn’t have that one space where I could be fearless. Everyone deserves a fearless space of their own. Happy crafting!

Found Object Assemblage & How to Make a Reverse Canvas!

Hi friends!  The thing I love about mixed media art is that anything goes! I have been saving paint tubes as I used them up and ruined brushes because I thought they would make a cool art project some day. This basket of junk survived a studio purge and I have to admit I felt pretty silly holding on to this trash a few times but not any longer.

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I used these spent supplies on this 12″x12″ mixed media project. I heard the term “reverse canvas” in a crafting group on facebook about a month ago and I had no idea what they were talking about so I searched it and I found delightful collage and mixed media projects on the back side of canvasses with the stretcher bars used as a frame. I fell in love! It reminded me of the altered books I used to make in the 1990s. I added it to my “someday” list and on a day I needed a dose of sunshine and play I did it! Watch the video for a tutorial!

Supplies (affiliate links used)

Will you try this? What will be the topic of your assemblage? Don’t feel like you need something special to create, you can use a shallow cardboard box and leftover house paint as a base and colorant. Please don’t let supplies be an obstacle. There is no way our projects will look the same as we are different people with different junk. That’s what makes it so cool. You are unique, embrace it! Your journey will make your art one of a kind and specail. Don’t compare it to someone else. I hope this gives you the freedom to play with your supplies today!

Watercolor Pussy-Willows!

Hi friends!  Today I have a springtime subject to paint, pussy-willows! These soft furry buds pop up in early April every year and if you clip some you can put them in a dry vase and keep them for weeks. Left alone on the tree they bloom into long fuzzy caterpiller like things and then turn to leaves in the summer.

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These are so fun to paint and give me hope that it might stop raining and warm up sometime in the future. It has felt like the longest winter ever, I can’t wait for spring and summer!


Supplies:

  • Watercolors: Burnt Umber, Ultramarine, Sap Green, Yellow Ochre. I used Holbein and Renesas but you can use any brand you like.
  • Brushes: 1″ flat, #10 round, 3/8″ dagger
  • Paper: Fabriano studio CP #140 watercolor paper *I use the hot press in this brand for stamping (both 90# and 140#) and the cold press #90 for testing and THE #140 for making watercolor blocks. It’s really inexpensive and I buy the 50-75 sheet pads but they have smaller sheet pads if you want to try it out. It is one of the best deals going. It is 25% cotton so it is a nice bridge between student grade and artist grade watercolor paper. I have been using it for 15 years and highly recommend it.
  • Prismacolor pencils
  • White posca pen
  • Other: paper towels, cut-up gift card for scraping, 2 water buckets *Salt for more texture in the background if desired. I didn’t use salt but it would be pretty!

I hope you give this painting a try. This winter hit me hard and this spring has been so dark and rainy. I can’t wait to feel the sunshine. I can’t control the weather but at least I can control my paintings. If you enjoyed this lesson and would be interested in taking a class with me check out my online school! You get real-time, step by step instruction and personalized feedback from me on your finished paintings. You can see the courses I offer here. Want to try a class? Use coupon code TRYME for 20% off any class for a limited time! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

 

Lilac Breasted Roller Sketchbook Sunday & Last Day for 40% Off!

Hi friends, this week I painted a very colorful bird called a Lilac Breasted Roller. When I saw a photo of this beautiful vibrant bird I was inspired! You can find the 90 minute real-time live narrated tutorial in Critique Club now.
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Watch the video to see how this painting came together!

Supplies:

LAST DAY! Save 40% on any art class in my school with coupon code LUCKY OR click on a discount link below. Deal Expires 3/18/19

I hope you have a happy Saint Patrick’s Day and til next time happy crafting!

Amaryllis in Gouache Sketchbook Sunday!

Hi friends! Today I am painting my Amaryllis! It bloomed this week and I wanted to be sure to capture it before it went by. I used gouache, watercolor markers and colored pencils in a 6″x9″ sketchbook but feel free to use what you prefer any size you like!

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I will have a real-time tutorial of this painting on February 1st in Critique Club. Join today for $5 per month and not only do you get 2 real-time tutorials from the Sketchbook Sunday series but you also get to submit 2 paintings a month for an in-depth critique from me to help you with whatever you are working on and improve as an artist! Click here to learn more or enroll today. Thank you for your interest! Now on-to the video!

Supplies (Affiliate links used)

I hope you have some time to create in your sketchbook today! Happy crafting!

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