#430

I haven’t died… Yet. Suffering from all the wonderful winter bugs, as well as adapting to a less flexible lifestyle ( not figuratively, I’m not allowed to bend or twist my back anymore). So all has been a challenge, but I have been paper macheing all over the lounge while binge watching in front of the heater.

As I haven’t taken any pictures to show you. I thought I’d take this opportunity to show of my two gorgeous cats. They’re so lovely… When they’re sleeping.
The black and white Tuxedo terror is named Charlie, and the grey sweetheart is Willow. The photos don’t do her coat justice. 

Ok, I have to remember this is my craft blog, and stop fawning over my kiddens. I’m going to rest up so I can get back to creating!

Go forth and create!

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#348

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I had no choice but to go to the doctors today to get a script. I wasn’t happy about leaving my cozy station that I had set up to do some Christmas themed embossing.
To take the sting out of sitting in a waiting room for two hours with screaming children and snotty women, I decided to buy some craft supplies. I’m not sure how much of a reward this was, as I had to spend my own money. Luckily I didn’t go too crazy.
I found some paper pirate chests that you fold and decorate yourself. I thought it would be nice to cover it with paper mache for texture and sturdiness. When I put it together, the lid was just a strange flap that you tuck in to close. I performed a little bit of paper surgery, and turned it into a proper lid. I can add a clasp or something later, if I decide to. There are six boxes in the pack, so I have some to play with.
I also got a bag of craft foam off cuts. This will be great for cutting out letters and shapes on my Big Shot, as well as freehand. Most of the pieces are adhesive already, but I have plenty of double sided sticker sheets left.
I picked up some supplies for card making, like rhinestones and number stickers as well.
I should get to bed. It’s been a very long day, and there isn’t enough money or craft stores to keep me sane without some beauty sleep.

#340

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Between cleaning, I’ve been working on my new colouring book. This piece is the third one that I’ve worked on, as the others weren’t working as I had hoped. I used masking fluid to cover the lines and applied quite a few layers of straight blue watercolour. In the previous picture I painted, I chose a colour that I had to mix, and didn’t mask before painting it. This resulted in a horrible mottled look  that looks rather muddy, as I had to mix purple myself, and that rarely goes well. Combined with the fact that I had to use a small brush so I didn’t paint over the already painted flowers, and I had to keep mixing more of the colour, it seemed doomed from the start.
This time, I took a bit more time planning, putting light layers and building up colour, which makes it nicer, even and easier to fix mistakes.
I was painting this with a lamp on, and with a small brush doing touch ups after removing the masking fluid, and I felt like an illustrator, which was cool.
Other than that, I’ve been shuffling through a great big pile of catalogues that I’ve collected, looking for images for the bottle cap pendants. I have quite a few now, I’m even having to cut back on the images, in case I run out of domes. I guess I can keep them for later. I’m always looking for inspiration and images, and I can buy more domes or use resin another time. The left over paper is mostly being cut into pieces to be used for paper mache. I had an urge to make a really big paper mache sculpture, like a chair or something. Not sure how I’ll go with my motivation on big projects. I’m only at the start of the thinking process though, perhaps a fancy cat bed or footstool would be much better. I came up with an idea for a scratching post as well. So much to do!

#320

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This isn’t what it looks like, it’s just gluing paper to each other using containers as moulds. Ok, you got me it is paper mache, again. It’s an illness, that’s easy on the hands, mostly.
I finally cleared a small space on my crafting table (by mostly moving things to the pile on the left side of the room,) so I did a little bit of crafting. I didn’t even know what to do, so I put on the creativity Ted talks playlist (watch this one, is so good) and cleaned out a drawer. I was going to do some colouring, but all my pencils and markers were set up on the couch, so instead, I felt like gluing and gesso-ing, so I put the kettle on (I was tired and needed caffeine to at least stay awake until nap time) and got changed out of my outside clothes. (I’m such a dork, that all sounds like I’m five. Except the coffee.)
Later on (after nap and din-din) I decided to do some colouring, which I decided to do in graphite (nothing to do with being too lazy to get my pencils, at all.) I wanted to do different media to colour in the book, so I’ve started one page in marker, and want to do other pages in Biro, coloured pens, paint etc. Also in different brands of coloured pencils. Graphite drawing is my most favourite and comfortable art out of all the types. I was rarely seen in late highschool without a book and pencil, and I drew every night. Before I knew it, I was rather good at drawing. I still have a long way to go, and can’t always draw everyday, but I do what I can, when I can. So today, that was colouring a portion of a page. This would be a great exercise if you want to practice shading. Imagine depth, height, light, shadows, reflected light and shape, as it can all be shown with shading. This is easier to learn in gray scale, than in colour, but then, I have trouble putting colour into pictures, and it all looks like monochrome sections. As I said, I have a long way to go.

#316

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Sparkly!
I discovered this cool effect when I was having fun covering things in glitter paint. The paint has a transparent colour put in as a base so it helps bring out the colour of the glitter. I think this is the difference between glitter paint and glitter glue, but I’m not sure. I found that stippling the paint onto the object with a stencil brush, made the glitter more dense. This was fun, so I decided to cover a canvas, that I had prepped, nearby. As I had a base colour on the shape I was covering before, I couldn’t see the design until I put it over a white base. I was going to layer the paint, but this turned out so pretty, I don’t want to add to it. I’m just not sure what to do with it now. I did have my red glitter on it and I like that combination, but I’m not sure.
Apart from that, I’ve just been adding more paper layers to all my projects, as well as tissue. I layered glue and tissue in the lids of my paint tubs, and came out with a cool, textured coin shape. So many cool things that I have no idea what to do with.

#314

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Just when I thought I had done enough paper mache for a while, I felt like making another shape. Mainly so I can paint it all sparkly. Painting objects is so relaxing, but I have to make the objects first, I guess. This guy is the logo that represents our in game guild. It’s basically chosen from a few they give you, and you choose colours and wear it as a tabard and display your banner, etc. Our colours are green and black, so this creation has earned some green-blue coloured glitter paint in its future. I’d use plain green, but the turquoise is prettier.
Apart from this, I’ve been colouring in an adults zentangle colouring book, plastering gesso onto canvases, and taping paper to my hands, trying to make a gauntlet…  I got bored. >.>
If you don’t hear from me for a few days, it’s because I’m doing secret present stuff, or I’ll finally get buried under the pile of projects that I haven’t put away. Either way, wish me luck!

#313

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Sorry for creepy clown nightmares.

I haven’t been around lately, due to this guy. He was a birthday present for my other half, and he took me a whole week to do in secret. In case you don’t recognise the mask, it’s from the movie Batman: The Dark Knight, the bank mask worn by the Joker. I downloaded the pdo file (for pepakura) here.
I printed the file, which took 12 pages, onto card and cut and scored all the pieces. I folded each line in the direction indicated and began taping together. It would have taken longer with glue, and it was already tricky without holding for drying time. I put a layer of small newspaper strips and glue to begin. This took quite a long time. As I went on, the strips of paper grew. I put a layer of gesso and tissue paper on the outside, and another newspaper layer on the inside. I added a layer of newspaper and gesso before painting. I glued some cotton balls into the nose to keep its shape, but they took so long to dry, even after a couple of days, and in front of the heater and hairdryer. I thought the edges would be less vivid by the time I put all the layers on, but they seemed more pronounced. I couldn’t really sand and shape them in the time frame I had. I’d changed my mind three times on what to make him, so I went from three months, to two weeks, to one week.
I only realised half way through making the mask that it was going to be creepy, and probably wasn’t a good idea. I already made him a helmet from a game using paper mache, so looks like we might have a collection starting, and I have some ideas on what to make next. When I get around to it.

#310

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All the paper. So much paper.
I decided to make a horde logo in paper mache. The Horde is a faction in the game, World of Warcraft, that we play. It’s a nice looking sigil, and much simpler than the opposing faction’s logo, which is a lion. I was going to make it out of clay, but decided while I’m covering paper with more paper, I may as well try a technique out. If all the pieces of the logo were connected, I wouldn’t have left the back piece complete. So, I printed out two logos, onto cardstock that were exactly the same size, and cut  one out, leaving the inner section intact, and cut the other out into the two pieces. I also cut a bunch of strips, all exactly the same width. I began constructing the logo by making little cylinders with the strips of card, and gluing them to the base shape inside the lines of the logo. The more you add, the sturdier it’ll be. I then glued the top layer to the cylinders, matching up the logos from above. After this, I used washi tape to adhere more strips around the edges, making the logo into an enclosed shape. This made mine all florally. Next step was to cover in paper. Because the paper mache isn’t making up the structure of the piece, I shouldn’t need to do a lot of layers. I might just add some tissue/gesso for a nicer outer layer, then paint it black and red with a coat of sealant. This technique can be made any size, just use thicker cardboard the larger you go, and can use toilet rolls for the cylinders, and paper tape instead of washi tape. Letters are often made this way, but you can use it for many shapes. Maybe even use multiple layers, or add paper clay for details. Like all crafts, they are just bases for you to elaborate on and project creativity.
I really should stop these side projects during birthday season. I have three cards and two presents to get done in less than two weeks. Duty calls, but for now, some beauty sleep.

#309

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“I’m going to stay up tonight. There are things in this house that aren’t covered in glue and paper,” I declared to my partner, as he was going to bed. He looked at me with amusement and left the room. I had been reading the sports pages, strip by strip, as I covered random objects with paste and last weeks local newsprint.
The end. Based on a true story.

Today found myself in a shop with money and fifteen minutes to wait, so I looked for some things I needed to get, none of which I could find. So I discovered they have a newly created teeny tiny arts and craft section. They were rather cheap and mostly aimed at kids, with a small card making rack. I picked up a few things from here. I got some stencils that were aimed at kids, but they looked rather vague for some of the complex designs that were there, and it looked like it would be fun filling in the blanks. I got the girl set and boys set, so 12 sheets in all, ranging from hearts, fairies and butterflies to monsters, cars and skulls.
I bought some cheap brushes for glue and playing around. They aren’t too bad, nice and springy with no chance of real hair used (my one stipulation on brushes.)
They had pretty clear stamps, as you can see, with large acrylic blocks. These designs will be great to use on cards, especially to emboss.
I also picked up a couple new nail polishes for gem making.
I had the thought the other day to make a paper mache bangle. I was going to use a 600ml bottle, but I couldn’t find one. While looking for something else, I came across a masking tape roll, sitting right in front if me. I covered it in alfoil and added it to my paper layer rotation.
So many layers. So little time.