Author: ffyrebird

EDM#163, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

EDM Challenge #163 Draw a deck of cards. Finding the prop was a bit of a challenge. I had to search the house top to bottom but I was able to dig up a real deck of cards for the challenge. Having a house full of kids means I easily found four different types of Uno sets, scads of baseball cards, and role-playing card games but the real cards were buried deep in a closet. Go figure….

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I’ve had a blast with this crusade!  I got to pretend to be a sculptress as a I carved out a few stamps for my journal, cool.

For my first try at carving a stamp, I chose an abstract design based on a sculpture that I saw in a catalog. I really don’t have a place in my home for a large sculpture of a moebius flame, but it fits just fine in my journal pages <grin>.114_2754_7114_2760_2

The next stamp that I carved was a very primitive-looking little bird.  We’ve been having a lot of fun lately watching the birds at our backyard feeders and I think it is time that they found a page or two of their own in my journal.  I was on the phone and not paying much attention to carving the stamp so I accidentally started shaving off the lines instead of the negative area around the image. When I realized what I was doing it was too late.  I decided to just go with it and added an outline also.  Didn’t test out too bad, so I trimmed the stamp into a rough bird shape and left it.

I’ve been wanting a few b114_2761ackground stamps for my journal so I took a whole stamp block and carved parallel lines into.  I like the way it turned out, simple and versatile.

Finally, here114_2759_3  is a glimpse of my poor desk with all the carving chaos

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EDM#162, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

EDM challenge #162, draw your breakfast.
Sorry, but I was hungry so this is just a fast and loose pencil sketch of my usual omelet in a pita. Nuke and eat….

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EDM#4, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

For EDM#4 I drew my chunky, primitive Knitter’s mug. I love this mug- the nice solid heft to it, the glossy, blobby, black sheep shapes, the slick forest green glaze, and the rough unglazed exterior with the tool lines going round and round that are a reminder that it was made by a real human and not by a mindless machine. The older I get, the more I appreciate handmade items. They seem to have more soul in them.

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EDM#3, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

This is my bag for the EDM# 3 challenge. Inside the bag is my little Hitchhiker spinning wheel. If you are familiar with the Hitchhiker wheels, you will notice that mine doesn’t have the hitchhiking hand/thumb cutout carry handle. I wanted it to be even more portable and got the version with the cut down top. That shaved several inches off so the wheel could fit in the frontseat floorboard area of a car. I’ve yet to try spinning in the car, however. The wheel does have the treadle in the shape of a huge barefoot. That is why this tote with sandals on it is so perfect for the wheel in my mind, besides the fact that I looove and collect anything from Life is Good!

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Originally uploaded by

Here is my go at EDM challenge #2, draw a lamp. I had to go find a photo of a lamp because at our house we just have overhead lighting, no lamps. I never even had given that any thought.

This is version B because I didn’t like the wonky shadow on version A.Copy_of_edm_2a  And here is version A.  After messing it up, I tried playing with it.  I was going for the "art journal" look.  Think I pretty much missed…

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EDM#161 smells wonderful
Originally uploaded by ffyrebird

This week the challenge was to draw something that smells wonderful. I chose the honeysuckle vines I planted along my fence. I remembered the smell from childhood and wanted some vines at my home. I also wanted the vines to attract birds to the yard. The birds seem to love the odd vine with reddish, purple, orange flowers on it. (I’m partial to the old fashioned white and yellow ones.) They also like to play in the copper feeder in the middle that I keep having to train the vine around. Obviously, the honeysuckle isn’t blooming now so I filled in the blanks with some help from a gardening catalog. The bare bones of the vine and a few leaves are still there, giving me a skeleton to hang the drawing on and the birds a place to hide out.
This drawing was also the first time I used masking fluid in a painting. Talk about something that does NOT smell wonderful. Ammonia, yuckkkkk!!! I used it to save the white for the flower clusters. They should have looked white and yellow, but I think the yellow tried to win out. Still, I swear in real life the drawing doesn’t look thaaaat yellow<cringe>, at least not as yellow as the scan seems to me.

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The Art Journal Fridays prompt for Leap day was to take a leap and try something different.  I tried using oil pastels for the first time. I’m not sure if I really like them.  They felt like drawing with something that is a cross between a crayon and a tube of lipstick.  Very crude and lacking in any fine control.  Maybe if I was working on a larger scale that wouldn’t be an issue.  They are also very smudgy. That’s not a big problem since I’m used to smudges with charcoal, but I did end up using over 4 coats of fixative just to make the drawing safe to handle.  It just wouldn’t stop feeling gooey.  I read somewhere that oil pastels never really dry and can still shift years later, a quality I don’t want in a journal that gets handled a lot while it is being made.  I might try this medium again later, but I think it would only be for something very loose like gestures. I also won’t be using oil pastels inside a bound journal, yuckkk!  However, oil pastels might be good for mindless stress relief drawings that you do and trash…

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EDM #1– a shoe
Originally uploaded by ffyrebird

My first EveryDay Matters drawing challenge. Just a quick sketch of one of my old sandals.  And here is the source for the sketch, my poor old beat up, beloved, black birks.114_2626

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Gppc17buttonI stumbled across the GPP Street Team just in time to see the posts about Crusade No. 17 ~ Pandora’s Box.  I had been lurking in total awe of all the amazing art journals when this challenge caught my eye.  Cool, I thought, I can do this.  So one of the very first posts on my newborn baby blog is how my journal kit has evolved.

It started innocently enough, just a moleskin and whatever pen was handy hanging out in my purse.  After reading Fast Sketching, I added the 7b Shorty pencil, a click eraser, a brown Pigma, a binder100_2549 clip, a few pages of glassine the size of the journal page and a folded paper towel tucked into the journal.  This is my bare minimum kit. 

My hoard of supplies grew and I gathered them all up in a tackle bag.  I liked the fishbone image but carefully picked o100_2550_3ut the stitches that spelled out the company 100_2551name.  It has nylon zip baggies on binder rings.    A baggie for each type of goodie, tech pens, markers, pencils, cut and paste supplies, etc.  A journal fits snuggly inside the front and a watercolor set in the outside pouch.

100_2552100_2553_2 That worked well but it was heavy and when traveling I aim for just the essentials.  We have a big family and when everyone is loaded into the minivan along with suitcases, all the kids’ electronic gizmos, toys, backpacks, and the cooler there isn’t even any room for our feet!

100_2555_2 I got this little hemp bag that fits (along with my purse) neatly under the console between the front seats and is easy100_2558 to hang around my neck while schlepping all the cargo in and out of hotels or cabins.  I took out my cut and paste baggie from the fish bag, added some neocolors, a few waterbrushes, a Kyoko(sp?) pencil case full of Pitt Pens and Pigmas, some waterbased markers, and put in a few manila envelopes for ephemera that I collect on the trip.  Kiddos each get an envelope too, s100_2560ince they all mak100_2562e journals.  Tucked into the outside slash pocket is another bag.   This one holds my field watercolor kit and real brushes plus charcoal pencils, another Pigma, ruler, kneaded eraser, sponge, and a pencil sharpener.   I grab it for on the spot sketches and watercolor when I don’t need all the other cut and paste stuff.

This is all just pretty basic stuff, but it gets the job done.  I’ve really learned a lot by looking at the other kits posted.  Wow, you folks are sooo creative!!  Hit the Archiver store today for goodies to add to the stash after viewing them in your posts– some glue dots, distress ink, stamps, rub ons, etc.

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