Wednesday, 3 October 2012

October Resolution

I'm feeling inspired to blog.

I don't do New Year's resolutions - I never keep them for a start. But I am making an October resolution.

When I started doing theological studies, I found out I had to learn a biblical language. I decided I should learn Hebrew. Looking back, I can see that it was probably as much to impress the new 'big people' in my life, as it was a desire to learn something new. And I've been trying, off and on, over the last two years, to learn it. Then at the beginning of this year, I found out about an on-line e-learning course from an Israeli university. But it was $900! American! But the characters just won't stick in my brain - it's just so different from any language I know, and I'm mono-lingual!

On the other hand, Greek characters do stick in my brain. Because they're so much closer to English characters, maybe? I can look at a greek word, and work out what the letters are, and sometimes, what the meaning is.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, I finally came to my senses last month after a conversation with someone who I hope is a new friend (and counsellor). 'How often are you actually going to use it?!' Well, when you put it like that ... there's only 1 person in my life who speaks Hebrew, and he's withdrawn from church life, so ... yeah, put like that ...

So, on to the October Resolution. Instead of studying Hebrew (or Greek for that matter), I'm going to study ART. Yeah! Really! I've got all these e-learning art courses which I've bought, looked at, but NOT ACTUALLY DONE! Plaster, Encaustic, Acrylic Painting, backgrounds, mixed media techniques ... (There's probably more, but damned if I can remember them all).

I have one more written assignment, and then a Theology exam in November, plus the remaining 5 study modules. Once they're done, it's ART TIME!

It's time to stop talking about doing it, and start DOING IT!

I've joined two wonderful facebook groups recently, which have really stimulated my desire - and in some ways my opportunity to actually create. These are Artist Trading Cards and Magically Mixed Art Community. The other site I recently joined is Swap Bot, which is an exchange site. All three are wonderful communities of artists. I've got seriously into making ATC's (Artist Trading Cards), which are 3 1/2 x 2 1/2" cards that are only traded, never sold. The small size means they can be done relatively quickly, and there's something to show at the end of it. You are not limited to a particular style or medium, which makes them ideal for mixed media.

Let's see if I can find some pictures of what I've done recently ...

Bookmarks - Embossed and decorated.

ATC Swap - Christian Letter C: Illuminated Chi-Rho. Metallic paints, gel pens.

ATC Swap - Pop-Up Card: Forgotten Memories. This one and Guadelupe (below) took about 10 hours + to do. The Swap Coordinator had a link to a You-Tube clip showing how to make this pop-up, but it was at least postcard sized, if not bigger. I had to reduce all the parts in size to fit the 3 1/2 x 2 1/2 ATC format (and I can't do maths!). I made a couple of dummy attempts before making the real ones. Then creating the 3D front decorations was another time-consuming effort - but so much fun! You hold the red part of the base, while sliding the pink striped wrapper either backwards to make it stand up, or forwards to make it lay down. The keys and clock are from cardstock. There's a little metal clasp from a fishing swivel attached to the fibres, clock and keys.

Guadelupe or Coatlaxopeuh.
The frame is made from corrugated cardboard, with diamantes and silver glitter glue blobs. The saint herself is cut in 4 layers, each piece separated by sticky-dots.
ATC Swap - Paper Free: acrylic 'skin' heart with metallic paints in the skin; held on to plastic sheet (from a notebook) by heart brads; polymer clay 'love' stamp held on by copper wire. Embellished with lace.
ATC Swap - Book Page and Stamp: This was taken from 'The Wind in the Willows' by Kenneth Grahame. I cut out the text on that page and used a selection to make a poem. The stamp is a New Zealand one from the 1920's. It's actually reversed, as I was intending to use it as an image transfer.

 ATC Swap - Summer: 3D pohutukawa tree, beach and sky. 'Summer' rub on transfer. Not happy with the word, but never mind. Added 3 fluffy red balls - meant to be pohutukawa flowers! I think this was one of the first ones I did!
 Work in progress - minibook - skewered pages. Really need to get this finished.

So part of doing more art is also getting back into making the minibooks - it kind of fell by the wayside with everything else (particularly study) getting in the way.

With Swap-Bot: Steam Punk; Victorian Mourning (3 cards); Christian Alphabet Letter D

With FB ATC group: Fall/Autumn; Coffee Lovers; Alternative Hello Kitty; October Lottery; NYC; George Tooker; Completely from a Magazine, book or newspaper; Carousel Animals; Tattooed Owls; Steampunk; That Jolly Old Elf.

Wow! 13 Swaps - most are 3 card swap - I have to make 3 of each theme. That will get me working, won't it!

So the intention is to blog about each ATC as I do it. I'd also like to try to put up some tutorials of stuff I've learned, that others might be interested in. Maybe I'll get more followers - who knows! It's all about me on this one!


Judy Shreve said...

Love your work and your push to know yourself through art! It's the best vehicle!

Shonna Williams said...

This is Shonna from Facebook. I really love your blog. So inspirational. Can't wait to see more art. Yours is fabulous.

Susan said...

Art is the best language of all! YAY! And you can incorporate some of the Hebrew and Greek letters as mysterious symbols.

I know what you mean about signing up for all the e-courses and forgetting which ones...I was thinking just the other day I need to go through things and make a list before the access runs out.

Love the ATCs.Can't wait to see what goodness you make when you finally have the time.

Sue Cottle said...

Thanks ladies - I can't figure out how to reply to your comments - my husband says it's because of the template I'm using.

I like the idea of using Greek and Hebrew letters - thanks Susan. All my courses are either on DVD, or no expiry - that's something good!

Coleen said...

Good resolutions, Sue. Go for it!!! Looks like you've been having a good time already. I've been on Swap-bot for several years now, but cutting back to do some other things. I got crazy with it for a while, but it was a great way to learn and make myself do some new things. It stretched me by the swaps I put myself into. Plus I do well with a deadline. Have fun with it.
Blessings, Coleen