May 21, 2009

art in the desert!

I haven't been doing much creating lately, but last weekend I got the chance to get back into an art groove. Kelly Kilmer was in town teaching the entire weekend at Frenzy Stamper in Scottsdale, and I signed up for her Sunday all-day class. I wasn't going to, but I stopped in the store on Saturday just to say Hi, and everyone was having such a good time, I just couldn't help myself. (And, I'm sooo glad I did; it was a great day!) Sunday's class was "Reclaimed- An Altered Artist's Book" and was tons of fun, as always. The starting point was a used book that was gutted and transformed into a journal. I dug thru the books at the local Goodwill, and scored this great book- I looked at them strictly for the size/shape and cover design- I love the colors of this book, and bonus, it was only $2.99! (I did feel a bit bad about destroying a book, but I will use some of the interior pages and pics in my future artwork...) The first pic shows a closeup of the journal spine- I removed the book spine, and replaced it with a painted and stamped canvas one.
This is the entire front cover; the butterfly sticker and paper doily are from my stash (plus some glitter glue!), and the flowered tape is from Kelly's collection. I really love the color combination of this journal!!
This is the inside front cover; when I removed the book block, I ripped the inside cover paper, so I collaged over it. More springish colors here, with my SB paper and stickers, along with more of Kelly's great deco tape over the vellum envelope.
As always in a Kelly class, we did some fun painting techniques to make the journal pages- it's hard to see, but the page above has some texture made using gel medium underneath the paint. More of Kelly's awesome deco tape collection, along with another of my stickers.
Not all of my pages were painted; I left some of them blank so I could collage on them... this was made from magazine paper (the flames) and a vintage star chart(?) for the heart. I think this journal will be used mainly for the quotes I collect- usually I write them on scraps of paper, scattered all over, but this will be a great place to keep some of my favorites, I think. (for more photos of this journal, visit my Flickr page.)

spring in the desert

spring has been busting out all over in the AZ desert... for the first time, some of our cactus have actually flowered! It seems like a long wait, but really, they've only been planted for a few years. This odd-looking specimen is a spruce cone cactus (aka turd cactus- that's what we call it, anyway, since that's sorta what the pieces look like). It surprised us with some beautiful white flowers!
a close-up of the flower... these flowers are just gorgeous, although they don't last- each flower is only open for a few hours, then disappears.
One of the prickly pear flowers; these were even harder to catch while they were open, since they only seemed to open in the mid-afternoon, and were already closing by the time I got home from work.
The lantana are definitely "busting out all over" next to the driveway... I've already pruned them once, and will soon have to again!