Thursday, October 27, 2016

Book Review: Nonsense

"In an increasingly complex, unpredictable world, what matters most isn't IQ, willpower, or confidence in what we know.  
It's how we deal with what we don't understand."

When I saw the cover art of Nonsense: The Power of Not Knowing by Jamie Holmes, I was curious. As I read the book description, I was intrigued. I like to know. I like closure. I like structure. And I have noticed that I get stressed when things get ambiguous. Could I possibly benefit from ambiguity? How?  

In the book, I found many anecdotes and examples of how knowledge can sometimes be limiting by making our thinking rigid and stopping further exploration. There is suggestion to "think of confusion as an opportunity to learn, not as a failure or an obstacle to understanding." 

"Cultivating ambiguity helps us keep an open mind and empathize with different viewpoints and contradictions are a kind of fuel for human imagination." 

Sure is an idea worth exploring! 

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. 

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The Not-So-Scary Halloween Owl Tutorial

Hi everyone, today  I have for you a tutorial to create a not-too-scary Halloween Owl!
Recently, I came across this fun Halloween quote via Pinterest:
A Great Big Owl in a great big tree, 
On a night so dark you could hardly see, 
Was watching the lights in the deep ravine 
Where the witches danced on Halloween.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

It inspired me to alter this chipboard owl I found in the children's craft section at Michaels using the Cinnamon Gelatos® color. Let me show you the steps.


Use Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Gel Medium to attach the parts to the owl as shown.


Prime the rather slick surface of the owl with Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Gesso to receive colors better.


Color the ears, wings and belly with Cinnamon Gelatos®. Blend colors with a slightly wet brush.


Color around the eyes and the feet with Caramel Gelatos®.


Color the body and below the ears black using Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Chalkboard Paint.


Sketch some details on the owl with pencil. Color around the eyes with Gelatos® Iced Coffee.


Accentuate the details with Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft PITT Artist pen.


Lay the leaf pattern stencil from the Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft 102 Stencil Collection on the owl's belly and apply Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Whipped Spackle with a palette knife. Remove stencil immediately and let the medium dry on the owl.


Add some white specks to the owl's body with gesso and paint brush.


Here's a close-up of my owl.
I hope you enjoyed today's tutorial and this might inspire to create handmade decor this Halloween.

Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Gelatos® colors: Caramel, Cinnamon, Iced Coffee
Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Textural Accents: Chalkboard Paint, Gel Medium, Gesso, Whipped Spackle
Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft 102 Stencil Collection
Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Gelatos Tool Set
Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft Journaling PITT Artist Pens
Others: chipboard owl, paint brushes

Monday, October 17, 2016

Book Review: The Illustrated Book of Sayings

Her magpie stands high.
Even monkeys fall from trees. 
Who saw the peacock dance in the jungle?
If these expressions intrigue you and you want to know what they mean, what language they are part of and how they came about, you might want to pick up The Illustrated Book of Sayings by Ella Frances Sanders. These fun, cultural and sometimes philosophical proverbs, sayings and expressions come with colorful illustrations that add charm to this book. If you love curious and timeless linguistic expressions, you'll love this book!
Btw, her magpie stands high means she has long legs! 
I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. 

Friday, October 14, 2016

Snowflake Card Tutorial

The weather has started to cool down here and the lower temperatures are already as low as 32 degrees. While the leaves are still turning, snow is not too far away. The cooler temperatures inspired me to create this Holiday card.

The beautifully intricate flurry of snowflakes is actually a Sizzix die called Snowflake Card by Sharyn Sowell.

To die-cut the Snowflake panels, create the following Sizzix Sandwich: On a Sizzix Accessory Standard Magnetic Platform For Wafer Thin Dies, lay another Sizzix Accessory Cutting Pad, Standard. Place the Sizzix Thinlits Die - Snowflake Card, blade side up and white cardstock on it and cover with the other Standard Cutting Pad. Pass the whole sandwich through the Sizzix Big Shot Machine. You may want to make a few extra passes before pulling the paper off the die to get every bit die-cut through.

Create a color bath to dip the Snowflake panels in. Cut parts of Blueberry and Silver Gelatos into a plaette and smoosh them down with a palette knife to get all the lumps out.

Transfer the crushed Gelatos to a shallow tray. Add water and mix thoroughly. Dip a Snowflake panel into the color bath. Lift the panel out as soon as it catches the colors. Leaving it in may result in the delicate panel falling apart. Repeat with the other panel.

Lay the colored panels to dry flat on a stack of paper towels. Wait till they are thoroughly dry.

Cut a piece of 5" x 6" cardstock. Run a line of adhesive along the top and bottom edges of the cardstock. These are where you will attach the strips of the Snowflake Card pieces.

Attach the Snowflake panels to the card. On the front of the card, rub some Silver Gelatos and spray with water and let the colors drip down. Repeat on the bottom edge. Let dry.

Brushletter the sentiment on the card.

Carefully fold the Snowflake panels over the card toward each other to finish.

I hope you enjoyed today's card tutorial and give this BEAUTIFUL die a try!

Sizzix Accessory - Cutting Pads, Standard, 1 Pair
Sizzix Accessory - Standard Magnetic Platform for Wafer-Thin Dies
Sizzix Big Shot Machine Only (White and Gray)
Others: cardstock, Gelatos, palette knife, shallow tray, spray bottle with water, paint brush, adhesive

Note: I am a project designer for Sizzix. Sizzix provided me with the above dies to create the above project. If you click the links to buy these dies, I will earn an itsy bitsy portion of the sale. Use the code SZB2015 at checkout. You get 15% off and I get an itsy bitsy portion of the sale. It's win-win!

Friday, October 07, 2016

Book Review: Photographs From The Edge

Photographer Art Wolfe tells stories through his photos. He truly walked off the beaten path when he decided to capture sights beyond the popular and the classic. Photographs From The Edge depicts the journey and adventure that Art Wolfe went on with the help of guides and fixers to remote corners of the earth over the last three decades. With every photo, Art tells the story behind and also offers photo tips. It will make a great addition to any adventurer or photographer's collection. Personally, I plan on trying to sketch some of these incredible photos!
I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.