Saturday, April 15, 2017

Just Don't Freak Out {And Also An Apology}

The "Just Don't Freak Out" Part

*GAAAAAASSSP!*  It's the dreaded post wherein the bloggy person has to tell the blog-readery persons that she has to give up the blog.  But wait!  That's not exactly true!  So yeah, I have to give it up.  BUT!  This is a temporary thing.  I'm not sure how temporary, but it is temporary.  So I'm not really giving up the blog, I'm just taking a break from the blog.

*Here's the deal, folks.  Hahaha, I don't know if you've noticed or anything, but I haven't been what you would call...active...around here, in recent times.  I could go on and on and on about how

I haven't had the time,

     and I've been super duper busy,

        and I have things in my life now that take up a lot of time that didn't use to be there...

In fact, let's make a list!  Onward, young soldier!
  • I got a boyfriend in January, who happens to take up a lot of time, for so many reasons
    •  We talk on the phone for hours at a time
    • We text for hours at a time
    • He visits me for a few days every few weeks
    • I visit him too...sometimes
  • I'm behind in chemistry (which doesn't necessarily mean I've been working at it non-stop, but it does cause me to get behind in history and even literature sometimes, both of which I do work on plenty)
  • I now have a chemistry tutor (majorly helpful, but it does take a few hours from my week)
  • I take my sister to her soccer practice sometimes
  • Most weeks, I have to go somewhere literally every day of the week
  • I like to eat and I like to sleep, sometimes
  • Any extra time I have, I want to devote to letter writing or crafting, not blogging (yeah, the blog revolves around crafting, but creating a blog post takes a lot of time)
So what I'm saying is, I've got to take a break from this blog, only for a little while I hope.
I wrote this in my journal at the beginning of March.  I need this reminder frequently.
I don't want to call this quitting*, because quitting is #evil, so instead I'm calling it "Saying no to a good thing." Which I'm a huge fan of.  I love saying no!  I LOVE SAYING NO!  Because, seriously, we all need a little "NO!" in our lives, amright?!  And sometimes, saying no to a very good thing is...a very good thing!  Because why have good when you can have better?  That's all I'm wonderin'.  And right now, my "better" is letting go of my craft blog so that I can better focus on school and on crafting itself! {And you're all like, school is almost out, Maggie...  Well, keep reading.}  {Also, I wrote this weeks ago, when it was more relevant.}

*Though secretly I have no problem calling it quitting.

The "And Also An Apology" Part

This part is for apologizing to all those kind people who read my blog, who've maybe been expecting a post the last two months?  ...Maybe?  I dunno.

Because the thing is, I've already been taking a break, just...unintentionally.  And when you take bloggy breaks, they are not supposed to be unintentional.  It's okay to take breaks, but you're supposed to let your readers know in advance (not halfway through), and all that fancy shtuff.  That's what I hear, anywho.

This unintentional break I've been taking is already like halfway through, I think, because, a very exciting piece of news you might like to hear is that...I'm graduating high school in {less than} a couple months!  After that, the expectation is that I will have more time to do bloggy sort of endeavors.

WOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

{Thank you for your patience.  You are so kind.}

P.S. Happy Easter!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Touch the Stars // Card Tutorial

First things first, people.  What in the world.  Honeybabes, it's been over a month since I done blessed you with my presence.  I don't even have a fabulous excuse either.

And speaking of taking forevah to get things done, the card featured in this post, and the others like it, are cards I made back in, um, October.

Anna was disappointed with the utter cheesiness of the card, but you know what?  I'm a cheesy individual, and I'm gonna make cheesy cards sometimes.

Supplies
Blank card
Something x 5 1/2 inch cardstock panel
Black extra fine sharpie
Star stamp
Stamp ink (or acrylic paint)
Paint brush
On the panel, draw a girl reaching up to the sky.  I started with the hand, because I wanted to make sure it was in the right place so I could place the star in the right place later on.
Then I continued to draw the rest of the girl.  I finished her arm, drew a simple sleeve, and then drew the back of her head, and onward.
OH YEAH, and I made sure to draw her far enough to the side that I could add words on the other side.  Which, by the way, is supah to the dupah fun.  I'm into it.
I'm getting better at this typography and fake calligraphy stuff, so what I can do now is better than this stuff from October, but I actually really like the imperfectness of this.
OOH!  LOOK AT IT!  It's my stamp!  I made it!  Out of a cork!
I used both ends of the cork too!  This end didn't work too well, unfortunately, but that's ookey.
Now blob some o' dat ink on dat stamp.
I used my finger to rub it to the edges of the stamp.  It was still really thick on ther' though.
 So I stamped it upon that card, right above the hand.
And then I had plenty left to stamp a second time on another piece of paper, for another card.
You can see that there was a lot of ink on the stamp by the darker edges around the stamped image.
I don't exactly remember doing this, but it looks like I removed some of that thick ink from around the edge, with the stamp itself.  (I do remember that.)

And then I drew some fun clouds up above, and the shoot-y things out from the star, and added a dotty border.  This works a whole lot bettah if the ink is dry, by the way.
Now the panel is finished, and we can deal with the card.  Using a flat, watercolor brush, I dipped it right into the opening of the tube and painted horizontal strokes along the left and right edges of the card, making sure to go towards the center at least half an inch so that the panel would cover ever'thin'.
As I said in the supplies list, you could also use acrylic paint for this, and it might even work better, as it would dry quicklier {definitely a word}.  I just didn't.  But acrylic paint is the bomb.
When that and the panel are dry (and please do make sure they're dry), you can glue on the panel.
HEY LOOK it's done.
This is the original card I made, before I made another to do a tutorial on.
I made a total of...six?  I thought I made eight.  But the picture only has six.  Anywho, I made a bunch, and on one, I drew a boy instead of a girl, which, looking back, was kinda dumb.  These cards are supah girly and should not be sent to any boy.  Oh weell.  Heh, and that boy one is the only one I  haven't used yet......

On some of these, I wrote "reach for the stars" instead of "touch the stars."  Gots to have variety.
Do you think this is just way too cheesy for life?  I agree it is cheesy.  Have you ever made a cork stamp?

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Wall Art // Using Glue, Fabric Paint, and Watercolors

Y'all, I am so excited about this.  SO EXCITED!  Know why?!  Because this technique is so fun!  And so easy!  And so fun!  Wait, did I say that already?  I mean, it involves glue.  And fabric paint.  And WATERCOLORS.  I love watercolors.

Before you move on because the title basically gives everything away about how to do this (or not?  Idk), I'm going to pique your curiosity by telling you something!  This technique includes a secret ingredient (of sorts)!  How exciting!  So stay tuned, and I shall, in time, satisfy your ever growing curiosity.
I tried this first on a teeny! tiny! leetle! baby! canvas!  I loved it so much that I HAD to try it on something bigger.*  (And then I tried it once more in my art journal, which was a fun experience!)
Look at that edge!  LOOK LOOK LOOK!  It's so cooool.  So of course I gotta show y'all a bunch of pictures and show you how to do it  yo'self!
*The bigger thing I tried it on was this long vertical canvas I had on hand already, back from when I bought it for when I was going to paint a peacock in art class, but then decided I wanted a bigger canvas for my peacock, so I bought a new one, and saved the smaller one for a later time!  (Such a fun story, I know it.)

The first thing to be done for this super cool technique is to "draw" a simple picture with liquid glue.
For the teeny! tiny! leetle! baby! canvas, I "drew" a lizard-type-thing, and for the one in my art journal, I "drew" a peacock.  (Hopefully you could see that?  I'm not sure if I would, except that I'm the artist!  HA!)  For this one, I "drew" dragonflies.  Aren't they cuties?!  You want to do relatively simple pictures, and as much as possible, thick, even squirtings of glue.
YAY I'M GONNA SATISFY YOUR EVER GROWING CURIOSITY NOW!  It has come time to reveal the secret ingredient.  (Ooh, how exciting.)  Can you see by the picture below?  It's a heat tool!

Well now that you know the secret ingredient, I'll give you the list of supplies for this project.

Supplies
Canvas
Liquid glue
Heat tool (this is the one I have)
White fabric paint (or acrylic paint)
Watercolors
Optional: acrylic sealer (I got mine at Walmart; I have both matte and gloss, but I used gloss for this.)

I got the bright idea to use a heat tool to dry the glue because 1) It was already sitting out from some other project I don't remember now, and 2) Ain't nobody go time fo' dat!  "Dat" being: waiting like thirty. whole. minutes. for the glue to dry.  Yeah, um, not gonna happen.
But guess what I found when I used the heat tool!  I didn't know it would do this, and boy oh boy, I  was so excited when I saw it happenin'!  It made the glue bubble up!  You can see that better in the picture above than the one below.
I held the heat tool about two to three inches above the glue, and then waved it over the whole thing until it was all dry.  It was such fun to see it bubble up like that!  And then after it bubbled up, it would scrunch back down, and that's what gave it the nice texture, and that's why you need to put the glue on there pretty thick.  If the glue isn't thick enough, it will dry before the heat gets to it, and it won't bubble up and scrunch back to provide that texture.  The texture will really come in handy when we get to watercoloring.

On the edge of my dragonfly piece, I just did a simple squiggly line all around.  This is an example of when I probably could have done the glue thicker.  You can see that, even after drying with the heat tool, the glue looks pretty flat.
Now after it's all dry, it's time to paint over the whole thing with white fabric paint!  I say fabric paint because that's all the white paint we had on hand when I was doing this project.  You could totally use acrylic paint too.  I'm sure they both work pretty much the same.

And I got out three bottles of the stuff because...I thought I'd need that much?  Well I didn't.  I only used one (the matte one, on the left, but it probably doesn't matter which you use).  The amount of glue I squeezed out (which you can see in the picture) was just about the perfect amount for my canvas.
With a good sized brush, hopefully acrylic, apply a good, thorough layer of paint over the whole canvas, making sure to get in all the little crevices.  Funny story: the paintbrush in the pictures is not the one I ended up using to paint the whole thing.  It's really better for watercolors than acrylics, so it wasn't stiff enough to do the job well.
See?  Now it's all painted white!  Just like it was already!  Haha, okay but hopefully you can see the difference.  I love the additional texture the paint strokes give.
YAY, this is my favorite part, and definitely the prettiest!  Watercoloring!
Before I started on the front, I wanted to practice some on the back.  Mostly I wanted to see what it looked like to watercolor right on the canvas, without the layer of fabric paint.  It was nice, but I liked the way it looked better with the fabric paint.  It would be cool to watercolor right on a canvas sometime, but that's another project for another time!
Alrighty, it's go time.  Paint time.  Play time.  Whoooo!  So first, just get your brush nice and soaking wet, and then get your canvas nice and soaking wet, and then apply some color on there!  I am a huge fan of lots of color, and also prettiness, so I like to use lots of pretty colors that coordinate well together.
At the top, I used light blue, turquoise, and light green, and then at the bottom, dark(ish) blue, purple, and dark(ish) pink.  I tried to be careful not to mix them too much, but I did bring them together in a way that I think pleases the eye.  It pleases my eyes a whole lot.  :)  Try to be light and fluffy with your painting.  Don't think about it too much, and don't try to make it perfect.
I also want to stress the importance of standing (or holding) the canvas in a vertical position and letting the paint drip down to the bottom.  That's how all those awesome streaks happened.  I couldn't have done that with my own skillz.
Aaahhh, doesn't it look awesome?!  Notice how the color got caught in the groovy texture.  That wouldn't happen as much if I hadn't let the paint drip downwards.
Aw, they're like BFFs.  Too cute.
Oh yeah, don't forget to watercolor the sides.
The last thing I did was sign my work!  Actually the last thing I did was seal my work.  Before that I signed them.  I just used sharpies in coordinating colors.
Ooh, and look at this!  I even made this cool collage thingy for Pinterest!  How fancy of me!  Yeah, I still haven't put in the effort figured out how to add a Pin-it button to my images, but once I pin it (which you can also do if you have the browser button), you can stalk my little Pinterest, and get it fo' yo'self!  (You should totally do it.)
And now I'm the one whose curiosity is piqued: will you try this?  I hope you do, and if you do, please let me know and show me a picture, because I want to see how other people will take this and make it their own!

What picture would you "draw"?