Friday, January 24, 2014

Grow Your Blog!

Hi - I'm Leslie, the Woman of One Woman's Hands and I'm very happy to be joining in the Grow Your Blog party again this year. I acquired a LOT of followers from the party last year and hope to get a few more this year. But I don't blog so I can gloat over how many followers I have, I blog to keep a record of things I've done and so that friends and family can see what I've been up to without waiting for me to email them. :-(

I began my blog in October 2010 and blog mostly about my art - mixed media stuff like mail art postcards, ATCs, and art journals, which I make myself because I love bookbinding. I play around in Adobe Photoshop Elements 12 (PSE12) and post digital collages now and then. Around the fringes of those things I knit, crochet, stitch a bit, and do some beading. I used to be a quilter, and later, a crazy quilter but my hands can't handle the little stitches any longer.

My animals make occasional appearances on the blog. I have the Standard American Pet Trio of dog, cat and parrot, and enjoy photographing them when they're doing something cute. I also garden in the summer - vegetables and a few fruit trees in our suburban back yard. I love to bake and have banana bread with chocolate chips and craisins in the oven as I type this.

When we moved into our current house about two years ago, I took the entire front room (living room and dining room, 16' x 23') as my art studio and it's just wonderful. All that SPACE! And I use every inch of it since I can't throw anything away because in mixed media, you can use practically anything.


My *giveaway* will be a hand made journal, somewhere in the 5"x7" to 6"x8" range. I'll make the covers using gelli prints, markers, paint, pens, stamps - all sorts of wonderful art supplies - and the pages will be 140lb watercolor paper so they'll hold up to whatever you want to do with it. It'll be bound with waxed linen thread, and I'll include some decorative tapes and some fun gelli prints and vintage papers and tags for you to add yourself. I haven't actually made the journal yet so no pictures of it to entice you, but the last two pictures are the covers of a similar one.

You don't have to follow my blog to enter the drawing - you're entered simply by commenting on this post - but if what I do appeals to you, give me a try. You can always drop me later if I don't keep you interested LOL.

The winner will be announced on my blog on February 15th. Good luck!

And be sure to click on the Grow Your Blog button at the top of the right sidebar to go visit almost 600 more good blogs. Wow.

Monday, January 20, 2014

as we were...

Playing along with Jane at Small But Charming in posting old pics of ourselves. This is me in August 1967, at 15 years old,  taking a horse named Cocoa over about a three foot jump. Aside from my turned out toes (a life long riding problem), my form is not too bad. My arms are slightly bent, I've got light contact with her mouth. I'm not behind her momentum. Looks like I grabbed a handful of mane as you can see from my first two fingers, but I'm letting go now that we've taken off.

Cocoa was just a camp horse, ridden by a different kid every day every day of her life but she could jump pretty well and I jumped her a lot that summer. This is the only time anyone snapped a pic.

Can you see my tongue sticking out?

Lucky I never bit it clean off.

from Beth

My mail art pal, Beth, sent me a couple cool pieces for Christmas. I scanned them back then but never got around to posting them. They're too cool to miss so here they are, a day late and a dollar short, but marvelous nonetheless.

This is a large postcard, 5x7 or so and I love it.
The limited color range, the various collage elements,
the abc tapes, the weathered wood, the boots.
It's collage done well ad I really like it.
It's going on the wall as soon as I dig out a frame for it.

This piece is the same size but done on (I'm not sure what).
It's like a clear plastic box lid, cause there are four side
edges that you can't see. I like the muted colors,
the elements, all those curves and circles with the
hard lines of the arrow. Very cool piece and
it's already on the wall above my computer desk
where I see it every day. Thanks, Beth!

incoming postcards

I got a few great cards in the last week or so. Thanks, ladies!

From Linda G - stamped and painted background , a couple images,
some stitching,some doodles.
 Love the monochromatic feel to this one.
I tried to imagine walking around in a hat like that...

From Rosalie A - this one pushes all my buttons -
 flowers, birds, pink and green.
 Love the music behind the flowers, which I think are a paper napkin.
And she used a dimensional gel pen here and there
so it has some texture that you can't see in the pic. Cool.

From Trula R - a graphic card in lovely jewel tones.
Looks like paint over book text, a look I love, plus some accent stitching.
The circular shapes in the paint with the jagged color changes and stitching
are a good contrast. The colors glow.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

MMAJRR update!

Mixed Media Art Journal Round Robin. I'm behind posting pics for this, but I just got done with the last one and will mail it home to Terrie on Tuesday. Meanwhile, here are the various spreads I've done since the last post about this. Hmmm... I know I've posted spreads but must not have tagged them correctly. Ah, found them.  Unfortunately I didn't keep track of which ones are whose so just enjoy them. Left side of spread is first, then the right.

Vintage papers collage, gesso, a circular rainbow of stamps,
gel stick edges, a couple quotes.

Scraped paint background, original images from
1924 ladies magazines, a bit of a story.
Sure wish I had some La-Mar Reducing Soap
so I could just wash my fat away...

Painted background, magazines images, doodles.

Painted background, magazine images, doodles.

Vintage paper collage background, various inks,
modeling paste scraped thru stencils,
gel sticks, stamped circles, printed quote.

Watercolor background, gel sticks, vintage postcard flap with
washi tape, magazine image, doodles,
hand carved 'home' stamp.

Underneath the postcard flap, another quote and
the original writing on the postcard.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

MMSA stamp head ATC

Next up, ATCs with a postage stamp for a head. You can go about this from either side - choose stamps you like, then find bodies they fit, or (I think this is easier) spread all your head stamps out so you can see them, then cruise thru magazines, auditioning stamps as you come to likely bodies.

Neither way is particularly quick and I only had the oomph to do two of them. The 8 card stamp fit the body so perfectly, better than any I've done. You can also lay the body on the stamp instead of stamp-on-body but I don't like to cover up any of the stamp.   First card has a watercolor background, second is a gelli print.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

MMSA outgoing horses

I'm trying to get a few swaps ahead cause I'm going to San Diego the last weekend of the month to visit with my old long-time CQ pal Julie. The latest theme is horses and I wanted to be sure not to miss this one as I've been a horse person my whole life, from collecting plastic horses and galloping around on my hands and knees, to riding lessons at 10 years old, thru hunter/jumper competition in my 20s, to trail riding in my 30/40/50s.

When we moved up here from SD, I left behind my horse source, my friend Babs and her wonderful stable of horses. I missed them terribly when we first got up here, but then my hip got so bad that I expect I would have had to quit riding anyway. So I haven't been on a horse since February of 2007, but once acquired, it's an itch you never completely scratch.
Print of cave drawings on gelli print background with stamped word.
I loved this drawing when I first saw it and knew it needed to be on a card.

My hand drawn version of a drawing I saw online.
Love the black on the colorful gelli background.

My hand drawn and painted version of a famous cave painting.
The background is a failed attempt to boil flowers
pressed between sheets of paper, a la Laura Ryan.
See second article on this page.

Goofy yawning magazine horse on a gelli background with
gelli circles all over the place.
This is the oddest of the lot and the one I like the best.

Monday, January 13, 2014

flowers in the house

I follow Jane at SmallButCharming, who posts cats, food, gardens, and hosts Flowers In The House, which I have enjoyed in the past but never managed to participate in.

I love the idea and I love flowers in my house, but I'm usually too lazy to pick them and too cheap to buy them. However, at the store yesterday they had an all white bouquet that I couldn't resist. I added in some tea tree from the back yard, stuck in all in a big white jug, and I love it.

The flowers normally live on the kitchen counter since that's where we hang out, but that area isn't real conducive to pretty pictures so I shot them on the little table in the entryway. It gets nice morning light and already has some interesting things on it.

Click thru her link and visit everyone's Flowers In The House!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

MMSA outgoing

Time is the theme for this one.
I only made one card for this swap cause
I didn't have any other good ideas.
I like this one with the different words
having to do with time, instead of numbers.
Karen of MMSA fired up her swaps for the new year and I spent this afternoon getting the first couple done.

These next three are for the Aqua and Orange swap.
Talk about perfect - that's my favorite complimentary color combo.
I used gelli prints as backgrounds, then did various things on top.
This one makes me think of Aboriginal drawings.

Love how the orange dots leap off the card on these two.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

hers and mine

I've been swapping postcards with an artist named Connie Rose for a while now and have accumulated a nice collection of her art. I thought it would be fun to look at a few of what I sent her and what I got in return. We've done many more swaps than this but these are the ones that are scanned and ready to post.

If you're reading this, you like art. Scare up another art friend to swap postcards with. I can't tell you how much fun it is to find one of these in my mailbox a couple times a month!
Ransom Note - first card I sent where all the letters fell off cause
I'm a moron and used a glue stick instead of gel medium. 
Ransom Note - card Connie sent me.
The background is heavily painted and very textural.
Love the pops of red.
Ransom Note - the second card I sent where everything stayed ON!

Round - card I sent Connie, all gelli prints. I immodestly love this one
and almost made another to send but then came to my senses and mailed it off.

Round - card Connie sent me. That's an excellent saying to remember.

White - card I sent Connie. 

White - card Connie sent me. Love this one, the old numbers, the wrapped up books.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

AJC14 digi collage pause...

I've resisted the one little word thing since I first heard of it, firstly (and mostly) because I suck at resolution type things, and, secondly, because I couldn't think of a word that really encompassed enough of what I wanted a new year to be. It seemed confining somehow.

But as I was going thru this first day of the year, I found myself pausing to scan the 6am sky for the last stars, to breath the crispy air more deeply as I waited for the dog to piddle on our walk, to read thru a poem a second and third time, to pick up that painted paper I got in a swap and really look at the colors.

So' pause...' is my OLW for 2014. Pause... before I speak that unneeded remark, before I go inside for the night to look at the sky one more time, before I walk past that stranger without a quick smile, before a lot of things - most things, probably, for me, because I'm a hurrier. Gotta get this done, no matter how pleasurable it may be, so that I can get on to that. Hurry to work, hurry home, hurry thru saying hi to the animals, hurry thru that really good book so I can get to the next one cause they're piling up on the shelf.

I'm going to pause... a bit more this year.

To plant the thought firmly in my mind, I made a digital collage.