Saturday, June 18, 2011

To Fly Like A Bird

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Friday, June 17, 2011

Get Your Grunge On

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Here is my selection for this weeks technique. (Better late then never!) I completely missed last weeks challenge simply because the time just disappeared on me. (I hate when that happens.) Anyways the technique that Linda over at Studio L3 chose this week is called "Faux Batiking". If you want to visit Tim's blog to read up on it just click here. To check out all the creative goodness on Linda's blog just click here. Below are the details of what I did on mine.

1. The "faux batik" technique is what I used for the background. Unfortunately I got a little carried away and covered most of it up but I promise it's under there. (See photo below.) I used Rusty Hinge to do the stamping and Vintage Photo on the foam blending pad. A little hint from me to you is this. I have never had much luck with getting Distress Ink to stick to my rubber stamps and make a completely good impression. (Maybe I am just too picky!) What I do to compensate is I ink my stamps with a Versamark pad first and then ink them with Distress Ink over it. I find that the Versamark ink lets the Distress Ink stay put and not bead up on the stamp to give a "spotty" look to the image.

2. The frame or shadow box is actually some packaging that a stamp set came in and I couldn't bare to part with it. It was a simple folded box made from heavy craft paper card stock. To make it a little more sturdy I lined the opening with some chipboard. Mostly because the inner edges were only partial and had holes in each corner. I then tore up dictionary pages and glued them down in a random fashion. Once it was dry I rubbed Antique Linen Distress Ink along the edges.
3. The gears are all Tim Holtz dies cut from chipboard and then painted with Sophisticated Finishes paint and patina solution. Some are painted with gold and have a green patina and some are painted copper and have a blue patina. To get them to look raised I just put 3 layers of foam tape on some and only one layer on others.
4. The women is cut out from the Graphic 45 paper from the 8"x8" pad. The images are smaller then the 12" x12" paper and were just a better size for this project. (The box is only 6" square.) I cut off the original wings she had and used these german scrap ones instead. I first painted them a metallic aqua and then rubbed on some Gold Leaf Rub-N-Buff.
5. The ornate frame is a laser cut chipboard piece that I got from Maxine's Melange in Australia. I know it seems crazy to order stuff all the way from the other side of the world but the shipping is minimal because the pieces are so light. I also have yet to find anything as unique and intricate as her stuff here in the states. The frame itself is painted with more of the Sophisticated Finishes paint that rusts with the activator.
6. The last steps were to add the book plate with "Debutante" typed and glued in it. (I have an old Underwood typewriter that I bought on eBay just for that kind of thing.) I also added some of Tim's corners that I rubbed with more Gold Leaf Rub-N-Buff. (I only had silver and copper corners and really wanted gold.)

I almost forgot but here are some sample tags that I did to just test out some colors and stamp images. The tag in the upper left corner is what the background actually looks like. I also really like the way the "blueprint" one turned out.

Wrapped in Robes

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Say Olé Today

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Read All About It

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Creative Muse Imagination Confabulator

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Of course I know you are all looking at this and wondering.... "Why on earth did she decorate a letter R?" Well I'll tell you why. My friend from Washington State, Marita Kovalik,  is decorating her newly painted studio and she wanted a word of papier mache letters to adorn the space above her door.

This is what the naked letters all looked like before she sent them out. 

These are the decorated letters she has gotten back so far. 

So as you can see I received the larger letter "R" to decorate with the request that it be "steampunk". How could I turn down a request like that when you all know I love a good steampunk theme. Anyways below are some more photos and the details of what I did to achieve various parts.

I originally just started decorating it any way I could think of to make it steampunk and then it occurred to me that all the other artists had incorporated a cherub in their design so maybe I could too. After I had that epiphany I realized that this could become a muse inspired "idea" machine. So the ideas are generated by the cherub and flow up the wire to the idea bulb. (You know how you get an idea and ... "bing"... the light bulb goes off. ) It triggers the pressure gauge to see how big the idea is. (continued below.)

1. I started with finding a cherub face that I might have made from polymer clay and all the ones I had were too small. So I pulled out all of my molds and made faces from all the cherubs. I thought this one looked the most inspirational because of the closed eyes. He was formed from black polymer clay and then brushed with copper Perfect Pearls before I baked him. After he was baked I rubber black acrylic paint into the crevices and wiped the rest off then coated him in glossy varnish. 
2. The wings are cut from thin sheets of craft copper and then embossed and die cut all in one step using a Cuttlebug "Plus" folder called "Vintage Collage." I then flipped the wings over and embossed the back much deeper using a ball stylus. I then flipped it back over and rubbed black acrylic paint into the crevices and wiped off the excess. (The metal diamond plate you see behind the cherub is done the same way with a regular embossing folder.) The hinge springs are just coils of craft wire that I screwed in with very tiny brass wood screws. The wings are also backed with pieces of chipboard and attached to small blocks of wood from underneath. That gave me something to screw the springs into and gave them more stability. 

The "idea" then flows into the upper lightbulb or goes around the side to turn the "creative gears & chain" to get the ideas flowing better. From the gears it flows out the wires and goes behind the door in the center. 

Notice the "idea" storage are has a door with a screen in it. That's so the ideas don't get stale and they get some light coming in to keep them bright and shiny. (I know I have waaaaaayyyyyy too much time on my hands to come up with all this nonsense.) 

Here's a close up of the idea bottles. I used the mini bottles from Tim Holtz and filled them with Diamond Glaze that has been colored with Distress Ink. (If you decide to do this keep the amount very small because it took about a week for this amount to dry.) The dispensers are "grease" nozzles that I found at Lowes in the hardware section. I also get the copper wire from the electrical section and have also found bits and pieces in the plumbing section. 

This is a close-up of the power source. It is made from a plastic tube that some beads came in and is filled with "cracked ice" glitter. I even used the black rubberized caps for the ends. I then took some flat brass strips I had and bent them around the black caps. I wrapped black wire around them to keep them from springing open and cut a slit through the letter to insert them. (I had to cut holes all over the back of the letter to attach various things.)  The little black hoses are rubber tubing that I found in the children's section of Michael's that is used to make necklaces from. (You can find it on any jewelry supply site too.) The mini nuts I got from a tool supply place and are just glued onto some black wire stuck into the end of the rubber tubing. The last touch was to add a spiral of brass wire for the electrical connection. 

The magnifying glass is so that you can read the name of the creation. (I purposely printed it very small.) The gears are from some old clocks I bought off of eBay. I found a way to attach the wind up key to one gear and mounted it so that it connected with the upper gear. The magnifying glass is actually made to attach to a pair or glasses with a small clip. (I removed the clip and attached it through the letter with some washers as spacers.

Here's a close-up of the slanted leg. It is a collection of watch and clock parts that are either attached with tiny screws or just fit tightly into holes I punched through the letter. (The timing belt is another piece of that rubbing tubing for necklaces.) 

Here's a side view of the large gear in the slot. It actually turns if you spin it. I did that by inserting a dowel rod through the center of the gear. (The dowel rod is covered on the front by the small solid silver gear.) The gear is so thick because it is cut from masonite. ( I got the gear at Retro Cafe Art.) I painted it with the Sophisticated Finishes paint in copper and then applied the blue patina finish. (The base of the whole letter is painted with the blonde bronze and then finished with green patina solution.) I cut the slot out of thin wood and stained it then screwed it into the letter to hide the cut edges of the chipboard. 

Well the goop in the glass bottles has to dry a few more days before I can safely mail it. I have no idea how I am going to wrap it so it doesn't get damaged, especially the magnifying glass, but I will figure something out. Hope you like it Marita!

Write Me A Letter

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Monday, June 13, 2011

Luscious In Lavender

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday Digital Download

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Here are some more patent images to add to your pieces and parts for some fantastic Zetti/Steampunk Characters.