Friday, March 25, 2011

Standard #10 Envelope becomes Multi-Pocket Mini Album!

I caught the latest bug that's been going around so have had a few days to do research on the computer (when we want to search the internet, it's called "research" in our home). I found this wonderful tutorial on YouTube by Laura from Following the Paper Trail on how to make a multi-pocket envelope album. Nice on its own or a few combined to make a mini scrapbook.

The neatest thing... this 4 pocket mini album is made from just one, #10 standard envelope that we all have at home or from the mail we get everyday. It doesn't matter if it has preprinted material on it because it will all be covered with great patterned paper in the end!

After I watched the tutorial I went and tried to make one... I was going to make one for Spring and/or Easter. After it was all put together and embellished, with the papers I used it turned out to be a general theme for any occasion.

The one envelope will give you four different pockets; one on the top, two on the right hand side and the last one in the back. I recommend checking out this tutorial (and her others) for some great mini album ideas and projects.

I hope I feel better soon so I can get back to my normal routine and I hope you all have a wonderful and creative weekend! ~ Sharka

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Painter's Block?

I think it's safe to say you have all heard of "writer's block" - correct? Right now, because I am a painter, I have to say that I have "painter's block"!

For those painters out there, you know those times when you stare and stare at the canvas and just can't bring yourself to pick up your brush and paint? I don't have trouble at the start of a painting, it's at the point in my style where I have to start adding detail. (see the photo) I get that feeling of... I don't know what to do, or can I do it?

Sometimes there are so many thoughts dancing around in my head that it makes me dizzy! Most often I think it's a little lack of confidence. The painting and I are having a battle of sorts; my brain starts talking to me...go ahead, do your best but it won't be good enough. I wish only the painting was talking to me and not my brain!

I get up, plug the kettle in for a cup of green tea, go back to being comfortable and settle down again to paint. My brain starts talking again, challenging me. Sometimes being somewhat intimidated I decide to go away, clean some of my brushes and change my water. I come back, the tea is now cold... those voices come back... and frustration sets in.

At this point I shut the lights off and go home and tell my husband, "Guess what, I'm at that stage again and don't know how to get over this temporary slump". I then leave the painting for a few days which somehow allows me to overcome the block - at which point I go back and finish it, most often painting and finishing faster.

Do any of you experience "painter's block"? If yes, tell me how you get past it? I think next time I'll try setting the painting aside and starting a new one - until I am ready to go back and finish the first one. Maybe this way I'll even get more paintings finished, faster! ~ Sharka

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Can You Guess Which One is Mine?

When we woke up this past Sunday, I looked outside and this is what we found! We drove slowly and made it to the second day of an acrylic workshop I was taking with Janice Robertson. I haven't taken a painting workshop in some time now and since becoming a member of the North Shore Artists' Guild I have new opportunities to explore - so I signed up for Janice's class. I'm pretty sure that I want to sign-up for next month's class as well - it's a workshop on oil painting.

We arrived Sunday morning, 15 out of 16 made it, and it was "show'n'tell" time for our study/exercise we did Saturday. It was a study in value and placement. We all had the same photo to paint from - can you guess which one is mine?

The snow continued to fall most of the day but it didn't matter - we were inside having fun learning and painting. When I came home after the workshop, this is what greeted us in our front yard! Looks like the nieghbours were having some fun in the snow! ~ Sharka