Exploration of my family home

My family home – some background if you are interested. My parents struggled and eventually were able to buy a house when I was prob about 6. We lived in it until after I left home and my parents sold it to move to the beach. We had a really big block so it was bought to build units.
Dad and my Uncle did lots of things so the original is on left – final on right.
The middle photo is myself [the oldest] with my 3 sisters
Mum had everything green inside and out. When I was in my teens I was allowed to paint just my room and the door to my room – being in the early seventies in was cream [I wasnt allowed anything too outrageous lol] I did however have a burnt orange door and feature beam. his is really an example of how I was allowed my creative freedom. My parents were humble and our home was a mansion to them. They always made me feel like I was brilliant [ even though I am far from it] and they relished in my creativity. Doing this has really made me remember how lucky I am to be who I am.

The floral element is my memory of Mum always pottering in the gardens. We even all got our own little plot to play with. The backyard had a huge camphor laurel tree that I loved to climb. it attracted beautiful blue butterflies [In australia these trees are now considered a pest as they spread like wildfire and take over native areas] We also had an assortment of vegies, fruit trees, vines, chooks – whatever Mum had a desire to play with. We made mud pies and dug for rocks literally in the ground under the house.

I even sometimes dream I am living in the house and how I would renovate it but I would change it for now not anything for then.

Credits: Places in the Heart by Outside the Box Design Studio and also Precepts and Promises, ARTchaeology of the Soul Member Mega – all available at http://www.godigitalscrapbooking.com

Digital watercolors

My watercolor experiments mad me wonder about digitally making watercolors. I had resurrected my wacom tablet and been playing so had a go.  This is the result and isn’t expert but the important thing was I had fun doing it and  I like the result. I will do some googling and see what others are doing and how but this is a start. I basically laid out stripes of color and then where they blended at the edges I used the smudge tool.

Here is the result. It reminds me of an old tie-dye Tshirt I had years ago – now there is another idea…….

My Art Journal Cover

Here it is and I love it.
This is my digitally made journal cover. I plan on making a hybrid one as well.
I chose the photo as it is totally my favourite photo ever – of me and my father. He is 86 now and has alzheimersso he is a big part of my life now as well as at my beginnings. I desaturated my watercolor a bit and played a lot with blending modes in photoshop. I added the border as I love old lace and things like this and I added a flowery overlay as I love flowers, gardens.
CREDITS: Border from Amazing Love by OTBDS, Gesso Brushes fro the AOS members mega by OTBDS,Question Mark and heart from Hide and Seek by Courtney’s Digi-Scrappin, Swirls from Letters of Love by HK Designs
All available at GoDigitalScrapbooking.com

Playing with watercolors

Yesterday I got out my paintbrushes for the first time in forever and played with some watercolors.I admit I did put it off for a day as the thought of cleaning my desk and digging my paints etc out was too much with the other things I had to do. But that is the point – starting is often the hardest part. We need to find what works best for us but find a way to just do it.
For me that meant making a pact with myself that I would finish the absolute necessities on Wednesday and then Thursday was watercolor day.
Working in my messy study did of course make me think of all the other tings I wanted to do like tidy it up, install some software on my computer, hook up my printer, actually move my tower to a better place and do a bit of mending – but that can all wait for another day.
And here you go this is my fave watercolor background. We are using these as a background for the cover of our art journal so after doing 5 I chose this one as being most representative of me.

I played with this one spraying the paper with water first. The horizontal lines were added in wet paint and then I sprayed along the lines so they ran and blended into the clean paper. The paper wasn’t the best quality but it worked for me as some of the paint pooled  giving interesting effects and giving me the idea to assist it a little dragging a blunt pencil through to make the curves.
I like how it represents me – some deep. some soft, some rough some smooth, swirls which I love, a little bit elegant, a little bit chaotic and a lot purple.
Next step – my cover.

A Year of Self Exploration

It has been awhile since I really felt creative – long enough. This year begins my journey into the world of art journals, collage, ephemera, ATC’s and whatever else takes my fancy along the way. Being a hoarder and one who loves everything old AND someone who usually looks at an object and thinks of another use for it it is probably inevitable that I have come this way.
My childhood is filled of memories of sewing, knitting,crochet,collecting butterflies, rocks, shells, stamps and whatever else my Mum was into at the time. This was followed by every holiday having to help her go through the buttons and fabrics she was going to do something with some day. How much I often wish she was still here with me to share my ideas with.
She has however left me with a wealth of photos and the added bonus of some personal poems, sketches and assorted flower pressings.

My problem has been time – not the lack of it but actually using it. Also procrastination – I think about it but never start. Time to change all that. To start me on my way I have signed up for Artchaeology of the Soul  at GoDigitalscrapbooking – a year class in Art Journalling that you can do with physical or digital products.

It is already helping to give me my mojo back. Stay tuned and I hope I can pass some on to you.

Automatic cropping and rotating photos

Summary: Whether you’re restoring old photos or adding them to your digital scrapbooking designs, let Photoshop’s Crop and Straighten Photos command speed up your scanning workflow!
Wow was I happy when I read this. I admit to not fully exploring photoshop’s potential – other tasks often get in the way. I can’t believe I missed this one though. I have spend days scanning old photos from my mother and grandmother and often find it much easier to scan a whole page. Sometimes the pictures are stuck down and you don’t want to damage them. That in itself is time consuming. Now I know that I can use photoshop to intuitively crop each to an individual file and straighten them. It is a simple process that speeds it up dramatically and works fairly well. You could use this for other tasks as well.

Take a look at the full tutorial here for full info and screenshots or just take a look under file/automate/crop and rotate photos.