Monday, April 7, 2014

Crafting ADD means Pretty Mermaid Art

Without a doubt I suffer from Crafting ADD.  Some might call me Craftophrenic (kind of like Schizophrenic but instead of voices and personalities running through my head, I have tons and tons of crafting ideas).  When people ask me what kind of crafter I am, I have a hard time answering that question.  Depending on my mood, I love to try it all.  Scrapbooking? Yes!  Cardmaking? Yes (though I am not great at it!) Altered Art?  Yes and Yes! Art Journaling?  Yes!  Painting? Yes! If I could, I would absolutely do it all!!
However, it is the Craftophrenia that allows me to use up (and buy up) a lot of the sometimes neglected supplies in my studio.  For the last few weeks, my scrapbook supplies have remained untouched, only to be replaced in my heart by my mixed media goodies.  This area of crafting is somewhat dangerous because a lot of the supplies are pricier than your average scrapbook papers.  There are just so many different areas of mixed media to explore and if you suffer from Craftophrenia, that's a dangerous thing.
I recently visited my local scrapook store, Betty's Creative Studio, and bought the mermaid stamp from Prima.  I love mermaids.  I mean seriously love mermaids.  If I ever got another tattoo, I think I would want it to be a mermaid. I love mermaids so much that I think I used to be one (or at least I thought that when I was a kid...because no way would I ever still really believe that I might have once been a mermaid).  WOW, see how easily I get off track??  Ugggg, anyways, I wanted to do something different with this mermaid stamp.  Almost all Prima doll stamps are paper pieced and I wanted to veer away from that for my beautiful mermaid.  Since my Crafting ADD had already kicked in and I was steering away from paper anyways, it immediately struck me that I should use my Pans!  Awwww Pan Pastels are one of the priciest but most prized crafty possessions.  I have taken only 2 online classes from Donna Downey herself and don't exactly consider myself an expert.  However, I do have enough knowledge to play with them with some success.  They are freaking amazing and in some Wayne's World "I'm not worthy" way, I am always blown away with the results I get working with them.  Once I have a general idea, my ball generally starts rolling....until it doesn't and then is so stuck I have to walk away for a day or two while it plagues me until I get unstuck again.
So here is where my ball began so to speak:
Oh yeah, that is totally vintage book paper and I WENT THERE!!  What more could you want in life??  Vintage paper, Pan Pastels, and a Prima mermaid!!  Every bit of the shading (which I am not great at so please be nice) is done with Pans.  Most of the crafty peeps I know do the same with Copics (totally have those too and they are also amazing).  I think I could have left her there and been satisfied.  
But I didn't (and that is also a problem I have...not knowing where and when to stop in my art). 

 Somewhere in there I skipped a photography step.  I did add an underwater background with Pans and a TCW stencil, as well as some glitter to her body, modeling paste bubbles, and glass bead gel bubbles.  I knew she needed a quote because I LOVE quotes!!  LOVE LOVE LOVE Quotes.  Pinterest is my go to for quotes and I found a few I loved (and had to make a new board dedicated to Mermaids). This one was short enough to fit on the canvas I had chosen so I went for it.  What you see is just an example of the spacing because I knew I wasn't going to leave it white (I typed it and printed it from my computer).  So she is coming along right??
I think this photo is one that has an Instagram filter on it so it may look a bit lighter than the rest.  At any rate, this is my lovely mermaid after I finished with a few white highlights, shading in the quote with Pan Pastels, and inking the edges with coordinating Distress Inks.  At this point I was stuck.  My proverbial ball quit rolling and there was no moving it.  I am quite happy with her but I do see things I wouldn't have added (like some of the white highlights) but there is only rolling forward; there is no rolling back.  At this point, I did turn to the owner of the scrapbook store for help.  She was having a customer yard sale that I volunteered to work (fabulous by the way!) and I bent her ear when we had a break.  She is a genius and has taken classes from every big name in the business. If I ever needed a mentor, she would be it, but for now I just consider her kind of like my Jewish mother.
 And this is what we came up with.  The burlap canvas mimicked the natural color of the ocean so I used a TCW stencil that had an organic shape to it to run embossing paste (brilliant the lightest frosting ever) mixed with Distress ink through in various spots.  I also inked the sides with Prima ink (you know the little ones that are light blue and shaped to run along edges beautifully?).  The mermaid needed grounding, so she got matted with a fuschia patterned paper and a thicker black frame.  In an effort to also give her some depth, I popped the entire matting/framed print up on the canvas.  Someone recently gave me some good advice: Let the art tell you when it is done.  I think my mermaid is saying BE DONE!!! Take me to your scrapbook store as your latest design team project and leave me there.  Start something new (as if she actually had to say that because my brain was already figuring out how to use a gelli plate to make something else with my mermaid).  I love her and am very proud of this.  It was one of the creating episodes where everything just seemed to go right (RARE!!).  This is what I worked on for several days INSTEAD OF THE LAUNDRY!  This is what came of my Craftophrenia.  And now I am ready for my Pans to go bye bye for awhile.  I want to play with the Gelli Plate (but first I have to save up to get one...I make my own but they end up molding and never seem to be as smooth as the read ones) INSTEAD OF THE LAUNDRY.  
How about you?  Do you stay in your creative box or do you suffer from Crafty ADD as well?  Do you stay in your crafty box because you want to or because you have that fear we talked about last week (and if you didn't read my blog post from last week, shame on you!  But I forgive you because I know you are headed there now)?  And if you are one of those rare crafters that manages to stick with the one thing, what else would you do if you could?  Come on!  Sky is the limit and money doesn't matter!!  What other crafty goodness would you get your hands dirty with INSTEAD OF THE LAUNDRY??


  1. You not only create beautiful art, you tell a really good story!

    I'm currently immersed in art journaling (beginner level, but loving every minute), but am open to anything. I'm always open to inspiration. I'm looking forward to seeing more from you.

    1. Thanks so much for checking out my blog Debi! I am looking forward to joining you and Heather tomorrow to see what she does what those gelli prints. So happy to hear you are enjoying art journaling. I admire people who can stick to it; my own art journal, like most of my crafts, has its season. I can't wait to see some of your pages over at the Kommunity.