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]

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Tim Holtz Tags and a Halloween Giveaway

Well, the photoshop course I mentioned in my last post is underway and suddenly things that have eluded me finally appear so logical, I guess you could say 'the penny has dropped'. I'm sure that I'll find something else to stumble upon, but for now everything seems to be working and making sense.

I'm enjoying learning something new and being creative and not only with photographs but also in the studio where I've been playing with some new Tim Holtz stamps (new to my collection that is). I couldn't resist his Haunted Mansion set for Halloween art  and last night I made this:

There are so many wonderful little things in the shops at the moment (specially for Halloween) that can be adapted for use in your artwork. A visit to the Pound shop got me these interlocking skeleton hands that I've attached to the bottom of the tag and the black spider is from a bag of spiders that's so big I'll never use them all. It's such good fun finding stuff to craft with from places you don't expect to find such things.

I've predominantly used Tim Holtz stamps and the Butterfly/Moth combo is from Paper Artsy. I utilised a wooden stirrer (courtesy of Costa Coffee) painted with a black Ranger Paint Dabber as a baton to attach the tag and and chain hanger. 

The 'Embalming Juice' background is actually a self adhesive bottle sticker I found in another store. The packet contains eight different bottle stickers and there's one with 'Ye Olde Spider Venom 1896' which I think is my favourite. I've inked and stamped over the top to blend it in. I made the tag to fit the width of the sticker as they are just too nice to start cropping bits off!

Finally, I added little gems to the eyes of the Skeleton, Owl and Spider, a red heart gem to the skeleton's rib cage and another little gem to the 'boney hands'.

Keep your eyes open for other fabulous finds while you're out and about shopping. I've found all sorts of things this year that will be making an appearance in the things I make.

Another stamp set that I've been hankering after for a while is Haberdashery. With my love of sewing and fabrics I know I'll make really good use of this one. And here's my first tag made with the set:

The final tag is made from a compilation of stamps and features images from Crafty Individuals and Inkylicious. Again, I've used the wooden baton to attach a chain hanger.

And finally, when I bought the bottle stickers I couldn't just buy one packet could I? I mean, I have to have one to use and one to cherish as we do. Now, there weren't many of these in the shop and it's the first time I've ever come across them so I bought an extra packet! I'm going to give the extra packet away together with some of the creepy spiders and the Halloween Tag  to someone who leaves a comment on this post before 1800 hours BST on Thursday 06th of October. The draw will be carried out randomly and I'll post the name of the winner on my blog after the draw has taken place.

So if you're into Halloween and would like these things you know what you have to do, good luck to all.

Happy Crafting.......

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Playing with Photoshop Elements

Just a very quick post this evening as I've spent the last few hours playing around with photographs and Photoshop Elements, just brushing up on resizing, adding text, digital brushes, frames and a couple of other things I wanted to get to grips with. It took me a while to figure out how create a frame around the edge of my photograph but perseverance payed off, I even managed to alter the opacity. I quite surprised myself with how much I've remembered, specially as I haven't done much in PSE over the past year.

Why am I playing with Photoshop? Well, I thought I'd better re-acquaint myself with the basics as I've signed up for a Photoshop course which starts this weekend. The lovely Carrie Anne sent me the details and I couldn't resist. And talking of Carrie, she has some really fantastic downloads that she's giving away entirely FREE on her blog! All you have to do is to sign up to her Newsletter and she'll send you the downloads. They are brilliant to use in your artwork and they are all authentic images from Carrie's personal collection of ephemera.

This is a little album I made some time ago using a Tim Holtz Sizzix dye to make the covers and pages. I was really pleased with how it turned out and I embellished the front with Prima flowers, stamps, adhesive gems and punched-out butterflies. Now all I have to do is fill it up.... with something!

I've been creating some new tags over the last week, I just have to get some photographs taken and then I'll show you what I've been playing with. If the sun shines tomorrow I'll get the camera out!

Enjoy the weekend...... Happy Crafting!