Life is short. Break the rules, forgive quickly, kiss slowly, love truly, laugh uncontrollably, and never regret anything that makes you smile. We're not quantified; there's no chart of desire. When the roaring flames of your heart have burned down to embers, may you find that you have married your best friend. [Steven Tyler]

Sunday, June 28, 2009

A Little Light Entertainment!

I'm really busy this weekend... as many of you probably already know, there are two fab event days happening next Friday (03rd) and Saturday (o4th) of July at Graphicus and I am up to my eyes getting stuff ready (that's not a complaint by the way - I'm really having some fun getting very inky and very painty) and working out what I'm going to be demonstrating. But unfortunately, I can't share anything just at the moment - it's under wraps until Friday.

Recently, I have found myself returning to my roots and picking up the pencils and pens... I have started drawing again! It's strange how, after such a long time out of it I've almost had to start from scratch to get anywhere near the quality I used to be able to achieve, but it's coming back - slowly.

What started it all? Well, I had a bit of a turf out and found some old charcoal and ink fashion drawings I'd done many, many years ago and some of my old journals and really liked what I had been doing. I then looked at all the blank journals I've collected over the years (can't help it, I have an addiction to beautiful books) just sitting on one of the book shelves in my studio and I knew that the time was right to get back into the groove.

I want to share something with you that I found while whizzing around the Internet looking at art supplies and yes, more journals. I howled at this.... it scratched my itch on two levels. One: my love of drawing and Two: we used to have a smooth haired Dachshund when I was little and I can just see her doing this!

I hope that made you chuckle as much as it did me!

Well, time to get back to getting even more inky. I might just post a real sneaky peek of some of the things I'm up to later... If not tonight, tomorrow maybe!

Enjoy your Sunday and Happy Crafting!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Blog Candy Alert!

There are brand new Elusive Images stamps on the way..... they will be released next week and there's a different type of giveaway happening over on the Elusive Images blog.

You might want to hot foot it over there to check it out! Remember: You've gotta be in it to win it!

Good Luck All and Happy Crafting!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Playing Catch Up - Part Two

Oh dear, I've been missing in action.... again! It was another dose of hospital and treatment last week which really did put me out of action for a few days. However, I'm going to endeavour to catch up with events and photos from the last few months and then I can get this blog up to date and back to the good stuff... crafting!

In my last post I mentioned that Diesel was off to the vets for his EPI check which I'm pleased to report, he passed with flying colours. Derek was really pleased with his weight and condition. While we were there he had his annual vaccinations and he is such a sweetie, I think he must be one of very few German Shepherd dogs who will turn around and lick his vet smack in the mush for being jabbed with a big needle. My last boy Degas would have taken the vets face off given half the chance.

February was a month packed full of events... some nice and some... not so nice! Early February saw us all at Elusive Images madly preparing for our big annual trade show at the NEC Birmingham. I should explain that most of the time when I refer to work I talk about Graphicus but I actually work for two companies (under one roof) confused? I am, most of the time, especially when it comes to answering the phone on my desk. For those who haven't a clue what I'm on about, Graphicus is the retail side of the company that sells all sorts of wonderful crafting goodies to all of you craft addicts out there whilst Elusive Images manufactures fab products such as the Elusive Images range of rubber stamp themeplates, wood mounted stamps and Artylicious CD ROM's but sells only to the trade. So this show was just for the shop owners, craft buyers and the press and it's spread over three action packed days.

Each year we try to theme our stand and the theme usually reflects a range of new stamps being launched at the show. Last year it was Peacocks whilst this year was Mardi Gras. Of course, the team on the stand have to be appropriately dressed and Glenda had sourced some fabuloso devore jackets in the company colours. Some visitors to the stand thought we looked very 'Harry Potterish'?

Here's Glenda, Helen and Emma all looking very elegant in their beautiful silk devore creations....

Glenda in full flow demonstrating......

And Carrie, Judith and Annette with Adrian beavering away in the background, taking the opportunity to get a hot cuppa before the mayhem begins when the show opens.

What you can't see in these photo's are the totally incredible watches we were all wearing that Glenda commissioned as a surprise for each of us manning the stand. We all sat down to dinner the night before the show opened after spending all day setting up and Glenda presented each of us with a beautiful little pouch and this is what it contained....

Aren't they exquisite? They were designed and hand made by the extremely talented beader extraordinaire.... our very own JUDITH! I was so surprised (although I did suspect Glenda was up to 'something' a few weeks before the show) and I will always treasure this very special piece.
Some of the art work and stock displays from around the stand.........

I have had to scrutinize all of the photos as several pieces of art work displayed on the stand are reserved for editorial features over the next few months, so some of the photos I wanted to show you.... I can't, at the moment.

As we had a strong Mardi Gras theme, I made this Venetian Mask using Elusive Images corporate colours and some of the brand new stamps released at the show. This was a real labour of love, originally inspired by the magnificent masks we saw in Il Prato, a shop in the Venetian Hotel, Las Vegas some eighteen months ago when Glenda, Adrian and I attended the Memory Trends trade show.

..... and the sumtuous colours of all of the other art work..... such stunning pieces!

The trade show is a lot of hard work and planning which usually starts mid summer the year before but it is such a fun thing to do and it's great meeting all of our trade customers, potential new customers, press contacts and of course, some of those well known guru's of the craft industry.

Well, when I sat down to do this post I had intended continuing with the February events which culminated in my knee replacement surgery but I really think that Part Three can wait until next time. It seems a shame to spoil these lovely arty photos with pics of my leg.... post surgery! I do want to share some pictures of the really lovely cards and special things people sent to me during my recuperation so they will be coming up soon.

Just to finish, I will leave you with some images of a tag I made last night. I was just messing around testing inks and ended up with this:
Using VersaMagic inks I stamped all around the edge of the tag using the lovely Christmas Rose stamp from the Roses Themeplate, with one full image in the centre of the tag towards the bottom. I then stamped the Art Words down the centre in quite a pale ink and took a large soft stipple brush and blended the inks while they were still wet.

Then I spritzed over the surface of the tag with Sticky Fingers Luster Spray Ink (Apricot I think) and finally with Fireworks Gold..... so zingy!

I took a Grungeboard flourish from the Elements pack and using my finger blended two of the Adirondack Acrylic Paints onto the flourish and dried. Then I added some Stickles to the flourish which was attached to the tag with silicone glue. Finally, some flat bottomed pearls, a large flower brad, rub-on letters and some ribbon finished the piece.

So, until next time.... thank you for all the lovely comments left on my last post, I really love to hear from you and appreciate the time you take to visit the blog and to leave messages.
Have fun and Happy Crafting!