Sunday, July 25, 2010


I am not sure what bug has bitten me now - I sometimes feel like a bit of chaff floating on a breeze. his time the breeze seems to have dropped me in a field of 'metalize'. I am in two ATC groups. I have always had difficulties working with the concept of themes and being part of like minded groups has really been helping me get over that issue. In one group the topic this month was 'bugs' - or 'what bugs you' and in the other group is it 'Marie Antoinette'. I was really feeling like I could not make it! First of all I dislike bugs. Period. I know that they have a place in the universe and that they can be beneficial and all but I dislike them - always have and always, I suspect will!

I considered doing something that bugs me - but distilling those concepts into something that would take a reasonable amount of time was proving to be a sticking point. I decided that a scarab was perfect  since traditionally the use of a scarab can indicate creation or transformation.  I have had a yen to work in metal and it must have been a long standing yen since I have rolls of metal that I bought probably about 8-10 years ago. I am sure that I had the same intent - to teach myself the basics of foil metal work. I decided that this was the month to give it all a go and see if it is really something that will capture my continuing imagination. YES ! It does! I have also been experimenting metal tape . It's adhesive backed and readily available in any hardware store. I think it is used for  something automotive! For all of these cards however I dug out the rolls of metal that I had on hand and began to play. The small scarab squares are adhered with carpet tape - what a wonderful [product that I would never have thought to try using if I had not needed to fix a corner of a rug down! It's great stuff - really!

The other groups topic for the next round of ATC's is "Marie Antoinette". Uh Oh - thought I to myself. I have always appreciated the time in history in which Marie lived - it was truly an amazingly rich period of history and Marie herself lived an amazing, albeit short, life. Her style though is most assuredly not me! I do not do well with lace and flounces and flirty fabric things. I would probably have been more of a tomboy then too. As I thought about the theme I realized that the only thing I really like about Marie Antoinette are her portraits - but slapping a copy of a portrait on an ATC does not make for an interesting, creative or inviting piece of mini art. Ah ha! Metal again. Metal to the rescue. I used this as an exercise to enjoy learning some more about embossing. Embossing is really firing my imagination right now - bit for metal work as well as for paper - and I am planning to try it with fabrics stiffened with GAC (Golden Art Supplies) 400 fabric stiffener and see what happens. 

I should mention that I am also using a combination of hand tools (that I also had already had on hand) as well as a machine called a "Big Shot" to do all of this embossing. Surprisingly I prefer the hand done stuff - but trust me - the machine has it's place and offers a lot of amazing options. This is, perhaps one of those instances when one may feel guilty for buying things at one point but later, maybe years later, when your imagination lands you in a 'creative field' that will not require another new shopping spree because you already have some of the products you need - you will feel better about those long ago purchases!

These then, are the cards for Citizen Marie Antoinette that I am working on.I have been having such a great time with metalizing things - and the best thing is that new ideas keep popping into my head as I work. Once I am finished with these two series I am retreating back to my journaling and pan pastels and water colors that I have been missing greatly as I have worked my way through my metalizing exercises. Thankfully, the scarab cards are about to be sent out to their new homes. I ended up making extras and using a mixture of backgrounds: paper and fabrics- cotton and silks. I have three more Marie's to make (they are due in September) and then I will back to to journals - funny how that has become a part of my life that really has a lot of meaning.

PS: Would anyone be interested in a post about all of the tools that I have been playing with? Let me  know!

Have you found any new techniques that have especially inspired you? Have you found a technique (like art journaling for me) that has become a really ingrained part of your creative life? What new techniques are you considering trying?


phonelady said...

those are just awesome I love them thanks for sharing .

Vicki W said...

Fabulous! I love what you have done with the metal!

Sandy said...

I love bugs and yours are very special.

Jaye said...

Love your 'Light', 'Joy', etc ATCs. Great idea.

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