Sunday, December 16, 2012

Studio Sunday - Suzanne Abrams - Stencils

Welcome to Sunday!  Are you working on all your last minute gifts as Christmas draws near?  I have not even begun my holiday shopping and feel so out-of-touch with the season.  We should be getting messy snow this week and hopefully it will start to look a little like the Holidays.  Many of you have probably seen the saddest story replaying over the news about the shooting rampage at the Sandy Hook school in Newtown, CT.  It's a tough subject for sure and not a topic that should be played out to the extreme the way the media is doing but isn't that always the way.  My heart goes out to those families affected by this act that has ripped their hearts and souls apart and I can't even begin to imagine the pain they must be going through.

I just love Sandra Meech's new book, Connecting Design to Stitch!  I haven't made my way through the entire book but it is definitely a keeper.  Sandra is amazing and I'm enjoying this book even more than her first.  This would make a fabulous gift for anyone who loves art quilting and developing designs on textiles!

I want to introduce a friend of mine living here at the Western Avenue Artist Lofts.  Suzanne Abrams is an amazing artist that I have come to know.  Suzanne is multi-talented in fiber art, painting and paper art and her truly organic style is reflected in all of her artwork.  Check out Suzanne's website at and the workshop she will be teaching on-line, Layered Art Cards, at launching February 14, 2013 seen here.

I also have an on-line workshop at starting March 21, 2013 called Printing The Journal.  You can check it out here.  Mark your calendars if you are interested!!

Other things I am working on include:

  • STENCIL DESIGNS - I haven't promoted my new stencil designs with as of yet and will be building more designs in the very near future and make my annoucement and giveaways at that time!  Also, there will be another BIG SURPRISE announcement related to stencils within the next few weeks!  It's still a secret so I can't let it out of the bag just yet so stay tuned!!
  • I'm also finishing up a journal and article for Cloth Paper Scissors for one of their e-mags (not sure which one) that will be coming out soon and I will keep you updated as to the title and expected delivery date.
  • Developing another on-line workshop for on my printed paper art quilts as seen in my last post.
I've also determined that I want to try my hand at being a surface and pattern designer so I am learning Adobe Illustrator CS6, as I go through stencil design building, and will be submitting a design for a chance to win a scholarship to this workshop, The Art & Business of Surface Pattern Design by amazing designer Rachel Taylor.  If I don't happen to with the scholarship (worth $1,000), I will still be taking this workshop come April and dedicating myself to learning how best to create designs to license for fabric, home goods, gifts and many other types of items.

It's funny how it has taken me this long to realize (since 1989) that my love for textiles has been a love of surface design and that through all the years since, I have been creating designs on textiles in my own way.  Now I have a chance to fuse my digital skills with my image design skills and push it as far as I can.  I feel like I have been an arrow that finally just hit its mark on the bulls eye!

Time goes flying by as my weekends are jam packed with "To Dos".  I hope everyone enjoys family gatherings and sharing the love this Holiday Season!  Please stay safe and healthy and treasure the hours you have with family and friends.

See you next week!


Saturday, December 8, 2012

Catching Up

What day is it?  What month is it?  This is exactly how I've felt for the past 3 months and I'm finally nearing the finish line.  Trying to be a full-time artist while working a full-time job is quite the challenge as I'm sure many of your know.  I'm finally coming to the end of my list of art deadlines and soon will have lots to share on that! Here are a couple of small paper art quilts that I created for an on-line workshop that I was hosting through

They were lots of fun to make and I plan to work on more like this!  Using dyed paper towels and paper towels from clean ups, stamps and stencils, I quilted them onto a base of cotton batting.  Second one is not finished yet and I plan on adding more embellishments as I make more of them.

LuAnn Kessi gave me permission to share this picture with you.  I was so excited when I saw my screen-printed images in her homework assignment monochromatic piece for a dying workshop she is taking!  To see more of LuAnn's work, visit her blog here.  I love LuAnn's work so go check her out if you haven't yet!!

Have a great weekend everyone and I will check back tomorrow!


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Studio Sunday December Push

It snowed yesterday but it still doesn't feel like "the season".  Things are super busy here at Western Avenue Studios as the parking lot was full yesterday which is a good sign for all those artists who are participating in Holiday Open Studios.  The studios are open to the public this weekend and next weekend for the holiday shoppers and it looks like they are enjoying it!  I am not opening my studio this weekend as I still have too much to do with looming deadlines.  I'm super grateful for the work but I feel that push and it will last through the entire month with Christmas to prepare for on the heels of my completed deadlines.

I've been creating lots of work but can't share it yet.  From the latest issue of Quilting Arts Magazine, here are three pieces I made that were literal examples of transitioning sketchbook pages to fabric.  My screen-printed deli papers were adhered directly to the fabric, then additional screen printing, painting and stitch were added to the layers.  

On this piece, I was using one of my favorite screens to print randomly to the fabric and mixing in different paint colors as I printed.  I love the end result as it makes me feel like winter winds are rushing through the trees after a snowfall.  I stitched over the entire piece following the unpainted lines of the branches and leaves.  I think I should add a little Jones Tones foil to this piece to add a little "frosty" appearance.

I hope everyone is having a low-stress weekend and I promise to catch up when I'm done with everything here !


Friday, November 23, 2012

Black Friday in the Studio

I've never been one of those people who starts holiday shopping at midnight or 4:00 in the morning.  I appreciate my sleep way too much and there is still plenty of time shop.  So while everyone is lined up at Walmart, I snooze away and awaken around 8:00 a.m.   I lounge around for a couple of hours with my coffee while I check items off of my "To Do" list.

Here are a few journal pages/collages that I'm working on.  I'm so grateful to have this extra day!!

Enjoy your shopping adventures!!


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

See Me in Quilting Arts Magazine!

I am slowly getting back into the grove after returning from Loveland, Colorado where I filmed a new workshop DVD for Cloth Paper Scissors magazine.  My full-time job is very busy at this time of year and I come home mentally drained, but now I get a brief reprieve as we have Friday off after the Thanksgiving holiday.  Whew!

I just received my digital copy of the new issue of Quilting Arts Magazine (Dec/Jan 2013) and I am psyched to be included in this issue!  You can see my article on page 65 - Off the Page: Sketchbook Keeping for Textile Artists.  Thank you, Vivika!!  This is a fabulous issue, as they always are!

I received the tentative DVD release schedule and my workshop is scheduled to come out May 1st.  I know, it's a long ways away.  I don't want to rush May to get here and they do say patience is a virtue :)  Everyone on the Quilting Arts and Cloth Paper Scissors teams work extremely hard and they do an amazing job!  I am so grateful to have had so many opportunities to be included and I know I've said that before, but I truly am.

So what happens between now and May???  I have a few tricks up my sleeve.  I will definitely be posting more FREE videos on this blog, I have a couple of big surprises that I'm working on that should be ready by January and I also have an article coming out in an upcoming e-Mag issue through Cloth Paper Scissors!  There is plenty going on and I want to focus more of my attention on my blog and the development of more ideas!!!  

Here are a couple of journal pages I am working on - 


Like I said, I'm still getting back in the groove LOL.  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving with friends and family and stay safe!!!


Friday, November 16, 2012

Loveland November 2012

What's a girl to do when she wants let go??!!??  Dance to all her favorite tunes on her iPod, that's what she does!!!!!  Woohoo!!!  It feels so good just to shake all the stress off from the past two months!

I've been hanging in my hotel room today catching my breath.  We taped the Cloth Paper Scissors Workshop DVD on Thursday and I swear it feels like I have given birth!!! (although I have nothing to base that assumption on LOL).  There are still a few commitments that I need to meet before the end of the year but maybe if I dance in the studio more frequently, I will get through it all :)

So now that I have created lots of stuff on large watercolor paper and most likely won't continue developing in large scale, I'm cutting down everything to journal size and boy have I got a lot of journal pages!!!

There are a lot of YUMMY pages and I want to drag out my deli papers and adhesive and start playing but there is limited space here.  Maybe just one or two pages :)

Thanks to Jenn Mason, Garrett Evans and Nick Stock, I made it through the taping and I'm sure they will work their editing magic to present a great workshop!  I'm super excited about this because I will now be able to follow up my Creating Personal Imagery 101 workshop on Photoshop Elements using all of the great techniques from the CPS Workshop DVD!!!  As I know more about the release date I will let you know.

Looking back over the past year, it's hard for me to believe how much I've accomplished!  I've been lucky enough to be invited to Loveland twice this year, I moved twice, landed in a great place, met so many talented people and truly feel like I have an artistic place in this world.  I'm still a baby bird getting used to flying but this little bird plans on growing big, strong wings to soar with!!!

Thanks to all my blog friends for hanging in there while I was silent these past couple of weeks and thank you so much Mom and Dad for always being there and supporting my ideas 100%!!  I couldn't have done it without you XOXOXOXOX


Friday, November 9, 2012

A Beautiful New Screen and Colorado Here I Come!

The best time to create new imagery is when you are working on other projects.  That's kind of how it goes for me.  One thing leads to another, then another and the pattern repeats itself.  I truly LUV, LUV, LUV this screen design and I think you will too!  I've included 2 variations for printing; a large print and a small print.  There are only 4 in stock right now so if they are sold out by the time you get to them, just leave me a comment here that you want one :)

These next few days are critical to me as I finalize and ready everything to head out to Colorado on Wednesday.  I will be working right up to the last minute on this one.  Keep your fingers crossed I get there and back without any major snowstorms!  I won't be driving the Camaro rental this time around either.  It's economy all the way on this trip!!!  

I still have a lot of work to do on other projects when I get back but plan on celebrating my 2nd DVD workshop taping with new videos and a great giveaway (which I haven't completely formulated yet)!  I'll let you know for sure!!!


Sunday, November 4, 2012

Studio Sunday and Changing Space

There is a very big clock hanging over my head and it is ticking away.  Now I'm fighting a cold (not a surprise as everyone around me has been sick) and trying not to let it slow me down.  Yesterday I got a lot done and will be chipping away today again.  Next weekend will be all about rehearsing and making small changes to the script as I walk through everything over and over again.

My "superman" brother-in-law stopped by yesterday to drop this off!

My new bedroom! LOL  I know, you're thinking "she's lost her mind"!!  I sold my beautiful bedroom set and traded it for a 16-foot platform that I could use as a platform bed/not sure yet.  So everything that had previously been tucked in under the big studio table is now under the platform and will be well hidden by curtains down the road.

The studio is now wide open and will get bigger when I push the closet/design wall back towards the platform reducing the overall size of my bedroom area since all I do there is sleep and get dressed :)  I plan on rearranging the tables so that I can start holding workshops here in the new year.

I now have a real couch, thanks to Mom and Dad who were getting a new one for themselves!  Back to work on the Cloth Paper Scissors DVD material now.  I have been blog peeking even though I'm not commenting and I'm lovin' what I see!!!  Promise to be back in touch in a couple of weeks!!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Studio Sunday

While thinking about this....

I'm doing this

and this

and this

and this

and this

and looking for more surface space to spread out on!

I know there is a table under there somewhere LOL!  Who works like this???

 Let's just say I wouldn't have been able to produce this way at any other place I have ever lived.  Thank goodness I'm here!  Sorry to be silent.  Big deadlines!!!  I will make it through and there will be a big Thanksgiving dinner waiting for me!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Studio Sunday

Abstract art?

A little paint, a brayer and a stamp

maybe a little pencil marking

How do you define abstract art LOL?  This is not a serious question, today.  But I do want to stress the amazing textures that you can create on deli paper and how much fun it is to incorporate those papers into larger pieces of art!  There will definitely be a video coming so stay tuned!!!

I'm working hard on my Cloth Paper Scissors DVD and I can't believe I have just a month of weekends to pull it all together!  I think I better load up on Red Bull for some late nights, too!  I hope you are all getting in some solid creative time this weekend.  If you don't hear from me soon, SEND COFFEE!!!


Friday, October 12, 2012

What do Scor Tape and Deli Paper Have in Common?

Art journalers, collage artists and altered book people will love this stuff!  

Scor Tape is an awesome double-sided tape that you can make paper and fabric tape with.

I used some of my painted deli paper.


You can also use paper punches!

Oh, did I mention screen-printed deli paper?????

This stuff is fabulous!  Joggles carries this in a variety of widths and check out Barbara's tutorial on using it!

Have a great weekend!!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Studio Sunday-Seth Apter-Giveaway WINNER!

Happy Sunday everyone!I hope you work this morning to clear blue skies as I did.  I'm starting to see some wonderful colors of leaves changing outside my big windows but I saw beautiful foliage yesterday on my road trip to CT (more on that to follow).

Let's get down to business!!!  Thank you for all who joined my FREE GIVEAWAY!!!!!  It is really cool to read them all and people have such nice things to say so thank YOU for that!!!

I pulled up my handy dandy Random Number Generator and let it roll this morning.


Please e-mail me so I can get your mailing address and ENJOY your new Thermofax screens!!!!

SETH APTER Rocks!!!!  Yesterday, I got on the road at 6:30 a.m. to make it to my workshop with Seth at the big Art Is event in Stamford, CT. was way worth the ride!!!!  Seth put on a fabulous class and everyone's work cam out fantastic!  Thank you, Seth, for introducing me to black gesso and acrylic glazes!!!!  

This workshop was his 52 Card Pickup and his thought process (perfect for the disciplined journaler) was that there are 52 weeks in a year giving you one card per week to journal on the back of a cool collage!!  How great is that!!!  I think I could make myself journal once a week, maybe???

I went back over some of my cards with white and then glazed again so I had lighter areas that would show through my layering of screen-printed deli papers!

I just love how they came out!!!

All this awesome color and texture!!!

Here is the book's back cover and the ribbon wrapped around it.  Yummy!!!  The best thing about this project is that the cards are all detatched and you can just pick which card you choose to journal on the back of each week depending on which one speaks to you or captures your current mood.

Awesome, Seth!!!  Thanks again for a fantastic workshop!!

I was also able to connect with a few amazing people whom I met at the CREATE NJ retreat in July, art doll artists that I hung with in 2007/2008 (Hey Susan!!), and even Andrew Borloz, who I met at ArtFest in 2008!!  

Have a great week and BE CREATIVE!!!