Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Shrooms and other art escapades

I hope all who happen to drop by for a visit had a lovely and peaceful (!) Christmas. And just in case I am not writing another entry before the new year, Happy New Year!!
Now that the formalities are done, I am proud to announce that I have done some more rolos, and not only that, but I felt like drawing Shrooms again and so I made a few for an Afa trade. I used markers on them instead of my trusted Inktense pencils, the colours are just so much more vibrant, the Inktense pencils work much better for more realistic drawings. And they need a different type of paper altogether, as you would be needing water as solvent.
I digress, here are the Rolos I made

I did not stop there, however. I am on a shroom spree, this one was inspired by Pinterest...

Friday, 18 December 2015

New Horizons

I have been so busy lately, that most of the time I am glad to be able to remember my name. December is not an easy month for me at all. There are several birthdays to think of and Christmas. I have all the presents going abroad sent off yesterday (I hope in time) and most of the gifts for my kids and husband got. But even though one could say I got it covered this still is an extremely tense time for me. I can not even put a finger on it. Every year around this time my hole body just tenses up, resulting in constant neck and shoulder pains and headaches. 
I am so glad I have my arting outlet. Just because I am posting very little lately, here or on my favourite webpage Atcsforall.com, doesn't mean there is no arting going on. There is SO MUCH arting going on. Especially now that I have "discovered" a third dimension! And a new medium to explore this awesome dimension: FELTING! (It's all your fault, Vikinglady)
Sometime I lie awake at night with my mind racing for new ways I could handle the wool or maybe use a needle felting technique, or... or... or...
So I thought I might post some flowers I made. I could not start on something easy, oh no, it has to be a flower, with a stem attached. I started taking pictures of the process and then got so engulfed in it I forgot to take more, I hope you like it anyway. And remember, this is only a fraction of what artsy stuff I have been doing...

This is the first flower I made, the wool fibres are already starting to felt together and I am about to attach the stamen...

Yes, it is dark green! So will the stem be, though...

Now I did not take more process pics (sorry about that) but instead here is my first finished flower...

And some more...

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

DIY Rolo Holder II

I have mentined on my favourite page ATCsforall.com that I have started a little Rolo collection, but that I am still lacking a proper holder for them. But what I have however is a seemingly endless supply of art and craft goodies. Among other, countless items I had in my stash a handfull f the wider lollipop sticks, in plain without any added colour. And I saw a great video on (guess where) Youtube 


Where a lady makes a sort of treasure chest with lollipop sticks. My mind started working and then....
I went outside into the shed and located my hot glue gun.

In the first picture you can already see the lollipop sticks in the corner, and I used gesso and some natural yarn I don't know the proper name of right now (how awkward is that).

In the video the lady secured her sticks with tape before she did the gluing and it makes absolutely perfect sense.

Here we can see the bottom and the lid nearly done, all thats missing are the fronts and backs.

And this is it. I used the same yarn stuff for the decorative handle for easy opening and closing. I used up all of my sticks, but if I find some more tucked away somewhere I will use them to glue a sort of guide rail inside so the lid will not sit on sideways. And if I get my hands on some pieces of chain I also will attach those into the lid to stop it from opening all the way and then falling backwards. Ah well, it all is a learning curve. Once I am a little less busy with the month of December I will make some dictionary page butterflies and attach them to my Rolo box. That might be in line with the sort of natural look it has now.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

ATC Book

I LOVE Pinterest. The amount of inspiration I got from pins is mindbogglingly amazing! All the things that can be done, from upcycling wooden pallets for furniture to marbeling ribbon and canvases, to name only a few, I have done the marbeling, and my sofa is made from timber pallets and an old matress (which is brilliant when you have 4 young children that drag food and drink all over the place), with sheets that can be changed and washed in a jiffy!
I also have gotten a lot of ideas for ATC making. One of which was for an ATC book. The original Pinterest pin was about APCs (altered playing cards) and it was not a tutorial, just showing the finished accordion style folded booklet. But it really really got me thinking. 
I am doing a monthly ATC trade over on Atcsforall.com. The original trade agreement was for 2:2 cards, with the design being up to whatever the artist feels like. It has however evolved into something much more from here, I sent her a few 9 card polyptychs (?) since then, she got me hooked on rolos and made me an awesome canvas, too. We just try our best to make this trade something special. 
So for our November trade I decided to make my partner an ATC booklet. I used my trusted inktense pencils for the background, but also my new Promarkers and Sharpies for colour pop. I had no pretty jump rings at my disposal so I had to make my own from sturdy wire, but I think it worked out fine. On the back of the cards I wrote her a letter, but I am not going to show that here...

Monday, 23 November 2015

Rolos again

I was trading some Rolos over on atcsforall.com, and instead of my usual inktense pencils I used lots and lots of markers. Using the markersalso seems to change my normal drawing style, maybe because I draw with the marker first and then do the outlines. With my inktense pencils it is the other way around.

The next one shows how a zia (zentangle inspired art) Rolo can already look fab (in my opinion) with only 3 different tangles used. Since I started using the markers and since I did inktober I also seem to prefer having only 2 to 3 tangles in a piece. This prevents overcrowding and allows each tangle to be shown off more effectively.

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Little recycle project

I was browsing You Tube the other day and I found this amazing video of a lady recycling Tetra Pak milk cartons into an organiser with drawers! Here is the link, I hope it works 


I waited a few days to let the idea settle and then I could resist no longer... and I also had a small stash of Tetra Paks built up. My milk cartons are more square than the ones she uses in the video but I used them anyway, and I did not have the really thick cardboard she uses to make her drawers, I made mine with more milk cartons.

I am not sure if I will make more of them, if I do I will actually go into the shed and look for my hot glue gun, the pva I used took ages to dry on the cartons and nothing sticks well to the coated inside (I guess that is why they coat it, doh...). 

Anyway, enough talk, now is the time for some pics, I also took a picture of the back, as proof I really used the Tetra Paks.

Green man overload

I noticed today I had not posted anything in a few days and so I decided it was about time for me to share a bit more art with you.
I am currently taking part in a Green man swap, and for those of you that are not familiar with the green man: it's a man's face with loads of green foliage around it and sprouting from his nostrils and mouth. 
I signed up for the swap even though I can not draw faces at all. I wanted to push my limits a bit, and also I knew I could hide parts I could not get right behind some big leaves. In my mind they all were supposed to look different from each other and I even got brave enough in the process to show off some mouths...

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Some marbelling

The other day one of my kids asked me if I could do some art with him. I had started planning out a little something I wanted to do with them and so we took the opportunity and got out our old and manky looking set of Dominoes and some nail polish.
I had saves some small plastic containers and we filled them with water. Now you can put drops of polish onto the water and they will spread out. Just keep dropping the polish into the centre so you get some rings. Next you take some toothpicks and drag the ring edges into one another to create the marbeled effect. Last you dip the object to be marbeled into the spot you like best (slowly and carefully) and take off any nailpolish that is still on the surface with a Q-Tip, that saves on clean up time. And thats it already, as easy as pie. 
Watch out, though, the varnish dries quickly as soon as it hits the water and you might carefully have to remove the outer rings of "skin" so you can do the marbeling with the toothpick.


Here are the results we got :

My oldest sons Dominoes, he did most of it all by himself! (I am so proud!)

Next up are my second sons Dominoes, he is a bit younger and asked me to give him a bit of a hand. (I am so proud of him, too!)

And mine, I only got to do mine after the boys had gone to bed...

Now I just have to find something I could do with them. Maybe I will make a little Dominoe book...

Saturday, 7 November 2015


The last few days were madly busy for me and my family. Last week the boys were off school for mid term break and so this week we had to get back to business as usual. Unfortunately the mid term break had the side effect that now my twins won't sleep during the day anymore, resulting in cranky twins and an exhausted mom in the evening. 
But I am still stealing my daily art time. I will not be able to show all my creations just yet, as some are for birthday babes over on atcsforall.com, and some are for personal trades were my partners have not yet received my cards. 
But what I can show you are some of my new index cards for my (very small) rolo collection. I had been asking around, how other people organise their rolos, and some have no order and just twist their circular Rolodex holder every now and then. While another person sorts them by artist and has artist specific indexcards for her trading partners. That is a fantastic idea I think and so I started making some index cards. 
Also I started getting cosy with my permanent markers I purchased a while ago to paint some canvas shoes. This has opened up some interesting design possibilities for me and also forces me to use a different style than with my comfy Inktense pencils. But see for yourself. 

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Rolodex holder

I have now posted a lot of Rolodex cards over the last month, and I am a little embarassed to admit that I used to store them all together in a Yogi Tea Classic cardbord box for teabags. All of my Rolos, the knes for my Tangle index and the cards send to me by other artists. The box smells nice thiugh, like cinnamon. But it was time for something new and I waited until I could not stop myself any longer. I went into a shoe store and asked them for a tiny empty shoe box, the kind they sell babies first shoes in. I took it home and started to think about how to build the rails for the Rolos, I wanted them to fit not too snug so I could still flip them easily enough. What I ended up using were 2 pairs of glued together swizzle sticks (I love that word) and some folded card, like so...

Yes, I also went ahead and made my own index cards from coloured card.
And because the box itself did look a bit boring I decided to move out of my comfort zone and use some papers and ribbon I had in my stash and fancy it up a bit with a huge bow...

and back...

Don't ask what the paper collection is, I bought it at a reduced price and it has lots of decoupage pages. I have never done decoupage but since this is a Valentines day set I might use them for Valentines day...

As you can see all my index cards fit in nicely, but something was still missing (see that ugly white box at the lower bottom?). I started asking myself how on earth would I ever really be able to decide on which patterns to use in my tangles? With the sheer amount I tend to play it safe and do some very nice ones over and over and over again. So I decided to make myself a random tangle pattern generator...

And fit it into that ugly free space at the bottom of the box...

That is the main part of the Rolodex card holder done, but what to do with the lid? A few month back I had altered a little book for an awesome girl in Texas (you know who you are ;) ) and I had practised on an old pocket diary. Now I had the problem that the old obsolete diary had become too interesting to just chuck it out and now finally its day had come. I mounted it onto the top of my shoe box lid, stuck some more fancy paper and ribbon around it, and even fixated the pages with part of the roll that held the ribbon. Now I can display new cards on the top and rotate them around on a regular basis.

I might work in a few more embellishments around the edge of the altered diary, but I still have not found the right object to put there. Maybe if I find a nice twig in the garden......

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Last of inktober

Today is quite an important day. Well, maybe not important, but a lot is happening today. It is quite obviously Halloween! And all the big and small kids are out and about trick or treating. Of course so were we (and takings were very plentyful) and my kids carved some beautiful pumpkins and put them in the driveway to signal to fellow trick or treaters. The first pumpkin you see has Happy Halloween carved on the other side and the second one has 5(!) faces all over it, although I am only posting two of them...

It is also the last day of the #inktober challenge, and my goodness, what a challenge. Do a drawing every day for a month, in order to develop good and daily drawing habits. I made it! I made a drawing every day and I enjoyed doing it. It was a chance to lay the groundwork for my Zentangle pattern rolo library, and I will keep it going, daily challenge or no.
I am still kind of glad it is over. I learned that basically I already have good drawing habits, I draw nearly every day of the week anyway, regardless of any challenges. But I am also very busy with family life and it is very hard sometimes to allocate the time for it. The feeling of "falling behind" is not a feeling I wish to associate with one of my favourite hobbies on a regular basis.

Here are my last #inktober drawings. The first is called "Punzel" by Maria Thomas, a variation of "Chainging", also by Maria Thomas. I have not as such worked with this one, but it is awesome when it is done, and it looks much more complete than its parent "Chainging". I will do that one later and then you will know what I mean.

And my last #inktober challenge drawing for this year:

Thursday, 29 October 2015


Today I did my #inktober zentangle design a little differently, in part to celebrate my 101st blog post and also to try out my white pigment ink pen on black paper. Unfortunately not as successful as I had hoped, the white pen dried very translucent and I had to go over everything 2-3 times. I am still using it in my reference library, even though it is not the best way to show off "Starawn" by Judy Murphy.

I should also mention that I get basically all my patterns from http://tanglepatterns.com (I hope the link works), as soon as I figure out how to put a link to her page into my sidebar I will do it, if you know how to do that, please leave a comment to that regard ;)

Post nr. 100!!

I never thought I would write this, but this is my 100th post! Yay! I wanted to post something special today and so todays #inktober drawing took me a while longer. It is not a rolo today, but a drawing in my sketchbook.


Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Y-Ful Power

I am back on track with daily posting, for now anyway. Todays #inktober drawing is zentangle design Y-Ful Power, by Shoshi. It is a lovely and versatile design, I have already seen it done on a large paper with a different tangle in each y shape. If you choose to follow the tangle design you will find that you get 3 interlaced layers and so I tend to use 3 decorative designs . Y-Ful Power also looks very nice after it is coloured.

Monday, 26 October 2015

In case you get bored

I also figured some of you might get fairly bored with all the tangle patterns that I have been posting lately, so I am posting a second post today with some atcs I have been making for a wonderful lady in Texas I am having monthly trades with. I would love to post even more pics of stuff I have been up to but some are trades that are still not completed and I do not want to spoil the surprises...

For this months trade with my awesome partner I chose poisonous and/or carnivorous plants. I know she likes the carnivorus ones and I have already made her arted up envelopes and rolos on that subject. 
She in turn has sent me some awesome Toadstool atcs last month and a special surprise in the shape of a 5x7 canvasboard with another Toadstool on it. I hung it next to my bedroom door so I can see it every day when I pass my door. I hope you read this post K. and please know that all your lovely gifts you sent me are very much appreciated over here. 

Here I give you the classic Venus Flytrap, Sundew and the Poisonous Nightshade.

#inktober drawings 24 - 26

Hi, Everyone. 
I was a little bit busy over the weekend (and it was a long weekend here) and I also got sick with sinusitis. I have been drawing my daily #inktober zentangle rolos, I just did not have the time or energy to write even a short post, so now I am giving you 3 lovely rolos in the one post. 

This tangle is called Sprigs, by Michelle Beauchamp. I really loved drawing it, I am already planning to use it in a larger project in the future. I left it plain this time, without shading or colours because I wanted the lines to speak for themself. 

This next tangle is called Pokeleaf, and it is a variation of the Pokeroot I posted previously, by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. I really like Pokeleaf, much more so than Pokeroot. Maybe if I experiment some more with both of them I might warm up with the berry shaped Pokeroot a bit more.

And this last tangle for today is called Squid, also by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas. I was a bit afraid to draw this one, every time I saw it in pictures it seemed somewhat chaotic and "untidy". I was doubtful if I could understand its internal dynamics (I don't know if that makes sense). But when I sat down to draw I had no trouble whatsoever. In fact, I enjoyed it very much, it had a very nice flowy and organic feel to it when I drew the lines.