Monday, December 20, 2010

Last Minute Christmas Card

Monday, November 29, 2010

Anne Bagby inspired Christmas Card

Anne Bagby was just at our studios filming her second DVD workshop, and while she showed us a bunch of really cool new techniques, I began thinking about what I could do with the ones she taught in her first DVD at Creative Catalyst Productions, "Paper, Patterns, and Glazing." This is a take on her complicated paper. The technique is fantastic within serious collage work and also excellent for an afternoon of holiday fun.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Snowflake Card1

Fun with paper scraps!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Caroline Jasper has new work just in time for the holidays. I learned a lot from her time here with us at Creative Catalyst Productions and even more while I edited her video, "Color Moves: Painting Water with Oil." Her DVD was the first one that introduced me to colored grounds. Caroline will start her oil paintings on a bright red or bright orange gessoed background. She then builds her color from there. You can see traces of the original background in the luminescent lines around trees or edges of boats in water. I really love her work.

Painting starting in top left, clockwise: Little Beach, Hidden, Little Shelter, Wait

Thursday, November 11, 2010


when an artist hands you a drawing she's just filmed and tells you to put spray fixative on it b/c, "Oh it's easy," and then you fast forward a day and she paints on that drawing and all the pencil lines disappear b/c you did not in fact do a very good job with fixative? That's what we call totally not awesome.*

*But thank goodness Anne was TOTALLY (totally) nice about it.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

My Year 1

Anne Bagby Sketches in a Brow
Anne Bagby has taken a lot of workshops from great artists. One, Alex Powers, told her class that it takes 10 years of painting to start creating original work. Most of the class found it discouraging but not Anne. I'm with Anne. To be able to start creating original work in only 10 years, well, that sounds like a cosmic deal. Ten years we can do.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Anne Bagby is On Her Way

We leave Creative Catalyst Productions in about an hour to drive to the airport and meet Anne Bagby. The studio is prepped. The cameras are ready. The cats can't wait to meet a new human and we're all really excited.

I've been in love with Anne's work since we have the opportunity to film her last DVD workshop, "Paper, Patterns, and Glazing"and am unbelievably happy that we have the opportunity to spend even more time with her for this second DVD.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010


I have always been a serious fan of card making. Not only do you get to do something creative but you get to send that piece to someone you love. All around fantastic.

At work, Creative Catalyst Productions, we're asking our newsletter subscribers and blog readers to send us images of the cards they make. My Halloween cards fell apart this year so I'm excited to try and create something for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

If you have a card you'd like to share, please send a high resolution jpg and a brief description on how you made the card to

Happy card making!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Atriums (via Country Living)

These jar atriums are really creepy. Imagine a line of them on a bookshelf during a casual Halloween movie night. So great!

See how to by Dane Holwager over at Country Living.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Modern Halloween Invite

I'm playing around with modern wedding invitation design and came up with something that could just as well be used for Halloween. A hypothetical Halloween party of course. :)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sea Garden

Friday, October 08, 2010 I distrust thee

I grew up with this notion that artists have wild lives full of adventure and intrigue. Almost a prerequisite for making good art. Yet, I feel like I didn't really discover my own artistic leanings until the world around me settled into a known calm. And ironically, it was leaving a city brimming with creativity did I find my own creative voice. Or really even realize I have one.

These are the things I'm thinking about as my husband and I pack our belongings and move back to that creative city.

Trick or Treating Ghosts

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Monday, October 04, 2010

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Hurrah Cards on Store Bought Cards

Most of the thank you cards I stenciled onto trimmed, 12x12 craft paper. However, when I was cleaning out my card file I realized what I really should be doing is stenciling onto pretty store bought cards I already owned. I have a bad (good?) habit of picking up sale items in craft and stationary stores. I have more than I need. This is a great way to use them! I must remember this for upcoming holiday cards.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

After these messages

I am getting married (hurrah!) and will be back in a few weeks after we've returned from the honeymoon. (<--That still feels strange to say.) So thank you for your patience and see you soon!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Welcome Linda Baker

We are finishing up our first full day of filming transparent watercolorist Linda Baker.

Linda is a phenomenal layerist and also a great teacher. She's been taking our criticisms in stride and been flexible in all ways. If the filming weren't so fun, I'd skip tomorrow, go buy some Pebeo masking fluid and start practicing all the cool techniques I'm learning.

We have two full more days of filming and I can't wait to see what Linda creates.

These are the times I love my job. :)

PS- Linda has been really nice about letting me take photos of her working with my macro lens. The photo on the left is of Linda working with her pipette. Just one of the many techniques she uses to create textures and layers in her paintings.

Linda's site, gallery.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Machine Stitched Fabric Card

During the studio clean last weekend, I threw a lot of fabric into the Goodwill bin. The top and bottom blue are two of them. As I glanced over and saw them laying next to each other and thought, "Damnit. That's kind of a cool color combination." Aaaand the ever so dangerous out-of-the-recycle-pile began.

About 5 minutes later, I had this. I'm very excited about it. I've been saving machine stitched fabric for awhile now wanting to try this very technique. Finally.

Side note: It's amazing how many ideas come out of cleaning. Maybe this is why cleaning takes so long- the derailment of ideas.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

New Brush Clean

I spent the whole weekend cleaning (post to come) and finally I treated myself with some painting time. Just throwing colors around...that's about all I know how to do.

BUT I did figure out the way I'm going to work my water jars. Keep one jar for brushes immediately as they come off the page. Try and clean them as much as possible in that first jar. Then, dip them into the second jar for the final clean. I spent an hour and half with paint and the second jar barely got dirty at all. Small steps. Small but super useful steps.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Creative Catalyst Art Show Winner: Congratulations Mary Rochelle Burnham!

We had a portrait art show at work and Jean Pederson was the juror. Jean chose Mary Rochelle Burnham's piece, "Richard."

Here's Mary's assessment of the painting.
What is your favorite part of this painting?
How the light models the face and brings out the warmth of the subject, both in color and personality.

What was a challenge and how did you find a solution?
The challenge is that I managed to get Rich to agree to sit for our portrait group that meets every week! Working from a live model can be difficult with distractions, model breaks and changing light from outdoor windows. The solution for me is to stay focused on my goal of what I'm trying to achieve by giving myself permission to express myself artistically and not try to be a camera.

Mary's final comment is really lovely. She wrote: my wonderful husband, the love of my life. I hope that through the use of light and color that I have captured my feelings for him and his sweet, glowing disposition. We have been married over twenty years and I have cherished every moment with him!

See all of the Creative Catalyst Productions Portrait Show entrants here.
See more of Mary's work at her website.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Links for the Week plus Robert Joyner Painting (!)

First original painting purchase ever! I'm so excited! The cow on the left is from artist Robert Joyner. Run, don't walk, to his blog, site, and etsy

Great interview with Donna Zagotta over at Ruth Armitage's blog. Question #9, "What other interests do you have? Do they contribute or take away from your art?" Oooooh interesting! See what Donna has to say.

Claudine Hellmuth's husband, Paul, is turning 36. Happy Birthday!

Thanks (card)

Thank you card I made from random scraps:
T-inside envelope
H-Part of an advertisement
A-Martha Stewart paper line
N-Goodwill found shelf liner
K-Scrap of gold paper
S-Front of a card I started to write for my Grandmother but then after I spelled about a million words wrong, I decided to start again.

Friday, June 04, 2010

Table Try 1 Million

Here's an image from the table design I'm trying for our wedding. You can kind of see some of the fabric flowers I'm working on.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Ellbee Equation

Vector art of a friend's dog.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Sherrill Kahn interview

Judi Hurwitt over at Approachable Art has a great interview with Sherrill Kahn! She also gave the DVD a really nice review. It's reviews like that that makes my job (editing) all worthwhile.

Also, and I learned this from Judi's interview, Sherill is now selling some of her work. Some lovely pieces at her website!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Couch Card (by Me)

Here's the card I made for Marc and Lin's wedding. I have a bad tendency to panic in the face of wedding cards. But slowly (slowly) I'm getting better at this. In this case with Z's help because he lovingly reminded me that I normally panic a day before we leave. Plus Marc and Lin made it easy b/c as soon as I saw their registry couch I knew exactly what I wanted to make.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Orange Felt

I've always loved felt but I become more and more impressed with it daily. I love how easy it is to work with and how solid a texture it is. Felt is sturdy. And comes in great colors like burnt orange.

This box of goodies is going into invitations. Yay!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Monday, April 05, 2010

Paper and Tulle Flower

Flower made of cupcake wrappers and tulle. And a stapler. The stapler really makes the difference.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter

Happy Easter!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Monday, March 29, 2010

bunny in disguise

So, this week may be brought to you by bunnies.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


My fiance really likes a certain type of cartooned animal. I made this with him in mind.

(Click on the image for a larger view.)

Friday, March 12, 2010

Brave (Illustration Friday)

I missed Illustration Friday again! I am on a roll.

OK, so for this I learned a few things:
1. Wall paper is hard to stick to paper. 
2. Vellum buckles under glue. When I paint it, it doesn't buckle, but when I try to stick it down on gloss medium, it buckles away. 

I like the general concept of this but the flashlight isn't distinguished enough from the monster behind. I am happy though that I finally used Japanese tape. Her shirt is made of a strip of tape over the inside of an envelope.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Palette for Perspective

I'm very excited about this system for learning color. I generally don't work super fast so I'm going to try and take the time to label what colors I used for mixing.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Perspective (Illustration Friday..or not)

(Update: So. Apparently Perspective was not this week's Illustration Friday. Ha! I clearly totally made it up. Nice work. Well, here is my Kelly's Brain submission for this week. Ahem. Continue on.)

Analysis and process after the break.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Teeny tiny short animation

I made this as a thank you to someone. It's nothing fancy.
*Note: It's taking just a moment to load.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Deathtrap poster

This is a poster I'm working on for the local community theater. I did not do the main design but am rather working from a concept sketch someone else gave me. I added the line up and down of the t and p and I'm hoping it passes muster. I'd like to really play around with it more but in all things life, probably don't have the time. Originally I was hoping this would be a chance to try some poster ideas I've seen popping up on various design blogs I read. Maybe next time. :)

Monday, February 15, 2010


I don't think I ever published our owl stamp. It must be because I'm waiting to send off all the little guys.

You know, every time I carve a stamp (and I'm carving a lot of them lately) I have to say thank you to Gloria Page. She came to our work and after watching her film her workshop and then while I edited her workshop, I knew that stamp carving really had a place in what I do creatively.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Birthday Card

This was my first foray into the awesomeness that is Happy Tape. There will be more. Maybe next year's valentine's day cards will be Happy Tape accessorized.

This was a birthday card (a hoooorrrribly late birthday card) for my friend whose name starts with N.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Happy Birthday Monster

I made this card for a friend who was thinking about boycotting her own birthday. I share the birthday mixed feelings thing (ooooh and I'm coming up on one!) so I felt that it was appropriate that the little monster was eating the Happy Birthday.

I was really excited about this design and may use it again. Little birthday monsters may be going out to all my friends for years.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Clumsy- Illustration Friday

I searched Clumsy and found a story of an art student who tripped and ripped a Picasso. You can't help but have empathy for her. Originally I was going to try and have people with Picasso-like bodies walking around on a street with a stray ear here, stray nose there, but I don't really have those drawing skills. So I started constructing bodies out of rectangles. After I placed the five people, I began laying body components elsewhere. The idea is that any of those other pieces could be rectangle people. We are all very fragile whether we are made of right edges or not.

I'd like to try this at home with acrylic paint and fabric.

Have I mentioned that I need to learn to draw? Yeeah.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Hello Again

Part of what I love about blogs is that they can act as a file cabinet for what we've felt and what we've done over a given time. Despite my best efforts, my daily life isn't as organized as it could be. I have notebooks sprawled with notes, thumbnail sketches and lists. Inevitably, one notebook is replaced by another and soon I have a whole bookshelf full of notebooks of half formed ideas. (Sound familiar?) A blog, on the other hand, keeps it organized. Thank you Google.

So in my own personal efforts to grow as an artist (little 'a' for the time being :), I'm going to try and become more focused in my CraftAmor postings. I'm not saying the posts will be any more focused, but I'm going to try and consciously use this space to log where I am and what I'm doing be it wedding crafts, work progress, weekly challenges (I hope everyone at InspireMeThursday is OK) or fighting the long fight of learning to draw. So yes. Hello again.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Man Painting

This is a painting (drawing?) I did recently. I played around with background options in Photoshop. Another thing I'd like to try is to take stamps and stamp in words in a horizontal line behind him. Fill almost the entire space with this stamped word.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Show Cards

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Monday, January 11, 2010

Show Cards

These are the cards I made for my castmates for my most recent show. The show was called "String of Pearls," and I thought about trying to use pearls as a motif but couldn't quite figure out something I liked. Instead I went with chairs. We each brought a different chair and spent the entire show on stage (even when we weren't playing any characters.)

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Painting/Collage Practice

Here's something I worked on last night. I like it better on the computer than I do in real life. In real life it seems too light. I need to make it darker but I'm not exactly sure how.

I think in my next try on a different piece I will try to create texture all across the page (face and background) and then mask out the background or then hit it with more colors and texture. On this piece I painted in the face and then worked up the background texture but after adding to the background, the face looked completely mismatched with the activity going on behind it.

Also, I should say that it was great being able to use things I'd learned in Ann Baldwin's 2nd DVD ("Text and Texture in Mixed Media Collage") in a way that wasn't necessarily exactly what she was teaching. That's a big step for me. Also made me realize I need to review the individual techniques in that b/c I was having trouble remembering the different times Ann suggests using molding paste vs heavy gel gloss.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Candy Boxes (by me)

I made these as thank yous for a show I was recently in. It was called "String of Pearls" so each candy box is wearing felt pearls. These were part of crew gifts. I also made photo magnets, which are sooooo easy. I love love love them. We had someone take a picture of us holding large paper "pearls" I made out of construction paper. I had to fiddle with it a bit in Photoshop but I made the "Thank you so much!" legible and then just printed them out on somewhat expensive magnet paper. It's truly magical.

These would be great for a Mother's day, Father's day, or even Valentine's Day for friends. Dress them up as favors at a bridal shower? All sorts of box possibilities!