Creative Jumpstart 2021

Creative Jumpstart 2021
Join me for the 10th Anniversary of CJS2021

Thursday, March 20

We Do Not Remember Days...

I'm running around trying to finish up those last minute details and I remembered I wanted to do a quick post before I leave for the Mixed Media Retreat in a few hours!

I wanted to share a few cards I made for the Art Gone Wild booth at CHA back in January!
This card was made using a stamp from the Edna's Flowers Set and I hand lettered the sentiment. Perfect for a Project Life Card! 
This stamp is from Esther's Garden Set and perfect for any occasion.

This stamp is the Daffodil Spray stamp, and is a single stamp. You could easily create this card when you have a spare minute and add a sentiment when you need a card to send out!

Thanks for dropping by, have a GREAT weekend!

Wednesday, March 19

Another Project Life Card!

I forgot that I had another project life card to share with you --- feel free to print from here. It might be a good thing that I forgot to share it before -- because now I have something to post about today, LOL. It's going to be a whirlwind around here as I finish up the last minute prep for the retreat this weekend!

Thank you for dropping by, have a lovely day.

Tuesday, March 18

Teaching is so Rewarding!

Today I wanted to share some photos from a workshop in Shetland, UK over the weekend with the lovely and talented Jennie Atkinson. I first met Jennie when she signed up for a class with me at My Creative Classroom several years ago, and in a recent email to me said this:
I always tell everyone that I am only where I am today because of you - by doing your courses you stretched me in ways I would never have thought possible.  Your courses are always so well organized and I know you put a lot of time and effort into them to get it right.
It's been so exciting watching Jennie's progress as she incorporated what I taught into her toolbox. Now, she's teaching amazing classes and sharing that and that makes me super excited too -- and super blessed that I am able to share what I do.

Here are a few pictures from her class at the Tingwall School last weekend.

 I spy, with my little eye -- something familiar on this page!

It sure looks like they are having a great time AND I'm super excited that she shared some pictures using my Black Eyed Susan stamp. Thank you so much Jennie.

You can check out Jennie's class schedule here and check out my on-line classes at Merrymeeting Art House or here at My Creative Classroom!

Thanks for dropping by today, have a great week. I think I'm finallly on the mend from a super nasty cold that's been hanging around since last week!

Monday, March 17

Just Be..

I've been nursing a nasty cold since last week. At least the downtime give me plenty of drawing time. I haven't really felt like doing any thing but being a couch potato.

Sharing a little challenge I did last week with the words Just Be. Simple but relaxing as there were no expectations - I should have added the words healthy there somewhere! Determined to kick this cold in the butt this week!

Have a great day, thanks for dropping by!

Sunday, March 16

Mixed Media - FREE Book Download at ISSUU!

I'm really super over the moon can't stand still excited to finally share my news with you.... the FREE eBook that Mandy Collins and I have been working together to create is finally available for download. (click on the image below to go directly to it on ISSUU.)

This is a 44 page book that contains a ton of amazing inspiration and colorful work, step-by-step tutorials for mail art and visual journaling.

We've put so much thought and effort into this book in the last 6 weeks and learned so much along the way! We have bigger and more collaborative goals in mind but this little gem was the perfect way for us to work out some of the bugs that happen when working collaboratively, internationally, with multiple platforms, photo editing software and all the challenges that go along with trying to create amazing content with multiple artists.

Feel free to share, download to your tablets -- but most importantly please be inspired by our hard work.

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy your weekend!

Saturday, March 15

The Whatevers -- March


It's that time of the month again, when Vic, Nat, Martha, Cuchy and I come together to share out Whatevers stories with you! Make sure you visit everyone to see where their story goes in this super fun project -- and also make sure you download the image and play along!

Each undercover assignment with the Pinkerton's for Winston was exciting -- to say the least.

While he hated to leave Morning Glory home alone on the farm he knew he had to work for PGS until the drought was gone and he could farm again.

He just didn't like betraying his friends....

the ones who he knew were brewing moonshine in the secrecy of the woods!


Here is how it works
  • Vicki, Cat, Cuchy (Carmen), Martha and I and I have made a one-year commitment to each other and picked twelve photos with Whatevers whom we will give a story.
  • Every month – if possible always on the 15th –  each of us will do a post with an individual story that goes along for us with the same photo.
  • If you want you can play along and we will have the photo for you to download and show us your version of The Whatevers. The photo will be posted at the end of our blogposts- not on Facebook!
  • There are no rules to the story itself- it can be funny, sad, uplifting, breathtaking- WHATEVER
    There are no rules on the length or the form of the story- it can be a short sentence, an essay, a poem or a soap opera – WHATEVER
  • There are no rules on the artform you choose – it can be a scrapbook layout, an altered art project, an artjournal page – WHATEVER
  • Here is a rule though: if you take the photo you have to link back to us and show us your story.
  • These pictures are from our personal stash and are for personal use for you only! If you want to use them for a publication whether a book or magazine in print or digital form please ask for permission
  • If you want to participate we’ll have a linky list for each Whatever Post.

    You can also join our The Whatevers -Facebook Page
    And share your project with use here:

    Friday, March 14

    Don't be so Critical of Yourself!

    Today I wanted to share a couple of recent #dailysketches that I've completed that I'm not so crazy about. For one reason or another they didn't turn out like I wanted them to. I can't even explain why. Just something bugged me about them.

    Which gets me to the point of my post today. It's so easy to be critical of your work and give up. For whatever reason:
    • you've gotten to attached to it and don't really see the forest through the trees
    • it doesn't match the inner vision you had for it
    • it doesn't look right -- the perspective is off
    • it was a struggle that you don't feel was worth the effort when you have completed the piece
    • All of the above
    However, when you put your page or art or whatever it is "out" there in cyberspace your least favorite work turn out to be some of the most liked and commented on pages by a jury of your peers.

    What does that mean?

    For me, it means I shouldn't be so critical of my work, others don't see what I see -- and really they're just daily practice sketches in a cheapo notebook that I use to keep my drawing muscles pumped and ready.  What I really need to do is step back and not set eyes on it for a few days. A week or a year. 

    When I come back with fresh eyes I might see what everyone else sees. Sometimes it might be something lovely and fresh and different from the normal day to day and other times I still might not like it. I do tend to get caught up in drawing flowers so sometimes it's nice to draw bugs and birds. However, my love will always be the flowers.

    But whatever the outcome, sticking with it and staying true to my own artsy course is the most important part. Being unique and sticking to what I like to do is as important to me as not giving up and expressing myself through drawings and words. All of these dailies makes my heart happy and makes me feel good about what I do. 

    You can see more of my dailies on my Instagram feed, link on the left side of the page!  And make sure to sign up for my Newsletter so you can see what's going on in the studio.

    Thanks for dropping by today, have a great weekend!  Oh, and make sure to check this out!

    Wednesday, March 12

    Soaring through Layers

    Today I wanted to share a super fun project I created -- I used only acrylic paint, spray paint, a wood panel and my Sizzix Tools! The beauty of creating mixed media art is that you have the flexibility to layer and layer and layer different mediums using a variety of tools until you get the desired result.

    By starting out light and layering darker and brighter colors you have the ability to create a piece of art that has a beautiful depth and vibrancy that is unique to you and your sense of style and color. 

    Using Thinlits to create stencils from heavy weight card stock is a great way to incorporate those expensive card-making and paper crafting tools in mixed media art.

    Creating stencils from plastic packaging and Bigz XL dies is a fun way to create stencils that last a long time.

    You can also use the Sizzix Embossing Folders to stamp designs on your canvas and incorporate lots of interesting texture and designs in each of your layers.

    Once your layers "feel" complete you can step away and let the design speak to you -- see what you want to do with it next.

    For me, the next step was using the Songbird die to create a beautiful bird in flight. I just love how this canvas came out. In total I think I had about 15 "base" layers before the songbird came out and then several layers after that! It's a fun technique to use when you are feeling stuck and want to create something with paint!

    Thanks for dropping by today, have a great day! 

    Tuesday, March 11

    It's a Frenzy around here!

    Sunday we went to the Fine Lines Exhibit of Drawings from the Brooklyn Museum at the Portland Museum of Art. It was a gorgeous collection of drawings from well-known artists that we all truly loved.

    It was the first truly spring like day we've had, as you can see in this photo. This is my favorite spot in town. When I was in high school I took the same exact photo only in black and white and developed it myself. I'm going to have to find some of those cool pieces of art I created then and share them with you.

    Anyway, I'm in paint flinging mode as I prepare for the Mixed Media Madness retreat on the 21st. It's those special little details that make everyone happy, don't you agree?

    I'm back to flinging paint and cutting paper today, thanks for dropping by. Have a great day!

    Saturday, March 8

    Holy Heck it's the FIRST Week of March and it's just about over!

    I can hardly believer that the FIRST WEEK of March is over - however it doesn't really look like winter is going to recede anytime soon. Even if it is warm out today.

    Thought I'd do a little week in review since I'm still in shock over it being March and all.

    This Week I hit the sixty mark for my Daily Practice Pages -- you can see them all on Instagram.  It feels good to have that many amazing drawings completed. This week started out rough and I wasn't really into it, but perseverance won and I was able to create 6 pages. A few more simple and quick than others, but sometimes the practice of actually doing it is all you need.

    I created these beautiful little memory cards for my sister-in-law to commemorate the life of her father, who passed away on Monday. She was inspired by this, over on Pinterest. It's been a tough few weeks. 

    Immediately after leaving the funeral last night we were blessed to this amazing sight. I was also so happy to have caught it on my phone.

    • On top of the 6 daily practice pages noted earlier I finished up 8 Project Life Cards using my Art Gone Wild Stamps -- here are 6 of them
    • Jumped in FEET First and got 2 classes ready to open on my Merrymeeting Art House Classroom site
    • Sent out a newsletter on MailChimp
    • Created a FREE Project Life Downloadable created/edited/posted a free video for using the Copic Spray System with my stencils
    • Created an apron for the Mixed Media Madness retreat that is happening on March 21! 
    • I even finished and posted a super cute project for the Sizzix blog! 
    • Worked on and almost finished a FREE 38 Page Downloadable book that Mandy Collins and I are working on
    It was a productive week for sure, working from home and doing it all means you have to wear a ton of different hats -- and I wouldn't have it any other way.

    Let's hope next week is as productive -- especially when I start going back to the gym, LOL. THANKS for dropping by and have a great weekend.

    Friday, March 7

    Art Gone Wild Flower Frame 1 Stamp!

    Hello and HAPPY Friday! Today I wanted to share a beautiful card made by Georgina Ford from Kaardvark! I love that she used Gelli Printed papers as the base for her flowers! I love my Gelli Plate, going to have to try this technique!

    You can read about how she created this card on her blog:

    THANKS for dropping by and have a WONDERFUL weekend! 

    Thursday, March 6

    Promise of Spring 

    Check out my Promise of Spring Shadowbox over on the Sizzix blog today! 

    Wednesday, March 5

    Small Journal Paisley Stencil!

    The days and weeks seem to fly by -- it seems like it was Sunday just a minute ago and now it's Wednesday. There's just not enough time to get all the I want to do done. But, chipping away bit by bit.

    Today I wanted to share this little video I created -- it's totally changed the way I use spray paint!

    No more headaches!

    And here's the completed Project Life card, it turned out great! 

    Thanks for joining me, have a GREAT day!

    Tuesday, March 4

    It Was a Small Victory, in Hope!

    Are you a Pessimist or an Optimist?
    Hopeless or Hopeful?
    Positive or Negative?

    I tend to think I'm hopeful a good part of the time, but we all have out moments -- right? I like to think I see the potential in things, in what they can become or how I can bend them to fit my purpose which in turn will make me happy. I think that makes me hopeful.

    If we weren't hopeful that things will work out for us we wouldn't start new adventures -- in the form of a new job or a new creative endeavor -- or even as simple as trying a new recipe or a new restaurant. Yes, it also makes us adventurous -- but in the HOPE that we will enjoy the adventure. We are hopeful.

    Ya think?

    Anyway, my point is -- you can use this philosophy in your creating and crafting endeavors too!  Meaning if you think you AREN'T a great (illustrator, collage artist, sketch artist, watercolorist ....etc) you won't be.

    But if you keep telling yourself that you are an amazing (whatever your thing is) then eventually your self-confidence and courage and hopefulness will win -- and everyone will see that oozing from your pores -- and they'll believe it too.

    And you will believe it too!

    Plus, with more self-confidence and hopefulness you will have the inner strength to try more, play more, adventure more in your art -- which leads to more practice -  and we all know that practice makes perfect, right?? It's an amazing circle -- which turns into a whirlwind of creativity. You can't lose.

    Really.You can't.

    So, slightly switching gears to my "This is art Notebook".  My Daily Practice Notebook. My Constant Companion these days. It started life as a Mickey Mouse notebook (similar to the one at the end of that link) that I picked up at Target. I liked it because of the heavy-duty chipboard cover. It feels substantial, like it will protect my secret lists and drawings. I was a little embarrassed to carry it though, lol.

    I'm not much of a Mickey fan. I however, I was hopeful + saw the potential in what the notebook could be. I transformed it. I made it into what I wanted it to be. And it makes me happy. Every single time I open it up I feel satisfied with it. And my hopes for it were great.

    It was a small victory, in hope.

    See how the little things, that are full of hope and potential can transform your day?

    Well that's it for now........Thanks for dropping by today -- have a wonderful, hopeful day wherever you are!

    PS. Stay tuned for some big NEWS coming from me SOON. Well, lots of big news! Sign up for my Newsletter....which is coming soon! I've got lots of specials and FREE offers to share with you that will only be available there!

    Monday, March 3

    FREE Project Life Cards for YOU!

    Hello and Happy First week of March.

    Today I thought I would share a free PDF I created and uploaded to Scribd for all you Project Lifers! 

    Click on the image above to go directly to Scribd to download the PDF. Then all you need to do is print, color, trim to 4" x 6" and add to your Project Life Books! Easy Peasy!

    THANKS for dropping by, have a great week. Stay tuned for some BIG things going on around here!

    Saturday, March 1

    Blue Flowers from Kathie DeLuca

    Good Morning and HAPPY Weekend and Happy 1st day of March!! Not that the weekends are any different than the weekdays are around here but it's always a nice concept when Saturday and Sunday roll around. Mostly because my family is home and my husband always cooks a delicious breakfast.

    Today I wanted to share this beautiful card that my friend Kathie Deluca created using my Flower Frame 1 Stamp. It's a gorgeous card, I just love the entire thing. Especially the blue flower, I would never have thought to color it blue.

    It's just stunning, don't you think?

    Take a minute to drop by her blog to see how she made this card and take a minute check out some of the other amazing things she creates, you won't be disappointed! She's so talented!

    Have a great weekend and thank you so much for dropping by!