I get a kick out of you!

Cat and I both like to draw images for our cards - design our own digistamps, if you will.  This is one that she really invested some effort into - four and a half hours drawing this image!  It's great though.  There are so many awful puns that go with a shoe.

I used some more of my pink crepe paper on this card, for the background layer and both hearts.  The reason the hearts are different colors is that the background cardstock  for each one is different.  Although I wouldn't normally use pink on a card for a man, for Valentines, you have to use pink or red, and red with green looks too much like Christmas.  I suppose I could have colored the shoe red...

Aly's Sunday Challenge - for the guys
Card Patterns - sketch
Paper Sundaes - Valentines
AIFactory - for boys
Meljen's - hearts
Truly Scrumptious - brown, pink, and green
Juliet Arrighi

Twirly Heart

I have a couple of fun things to tell you. First of all, I am pleased to report that I will be guest artist for CS Designs in February. I really admire Chris's distinctive artsy images, and look forward to seeing what her images inspire in me.

Second, I want you to know that they are posting the February Freebie Digis at Crafter's Digital Art Center. There are a lot of fun, free images to try, but the one I thought I would try first was this heart, which of course is from CS Designs.

I had several ideas about what I wanted to do, but when I reached for a sheet of paper to print it out, this idea popped into my head - what would happen if I printed it on black paper?  Well, the image was visible at an angle, if I managed to get the light to hit it just so, so I grabbed my souffle pens and tried tracing the lines.  My hand wobbled a bit, so I started doodling to cover my wobbles, and the next thing I knew, I had this heart.

The translucent layer of pink that you see on the card is crepe paper - it gives a fun, ruched texture.  The sentiment is cut with a cuttlebug die.

Challenges (besides the CDAC ones!):
Prairie Fairy - for a sweetheart
Charisma Cardz - Valentine
Delightful - have a heart
Digi Doodle Shop's Best - swirls
Color Dare - pink, pear, plum
Cheerful Stamp Pad - Valentine
Digi's by Phooka - love is in the air!
Juliet Arrighi

Dubious freebies

My buddy Cat said that I should put my head and rabbit images from my Year of the Rabbit cards up as digital freebies.  I laughed - the head that I drew is completely bald, and the rabbit is really only half a rabbit - I knew exactly how I was going to use the images when I drew them, and didn't see any other application for them.  I did save them, though.

So, I attached them to a reply and told her that if she used them on a card, I would put the images on my blog.
She was up for the challenge, so here you go:
These are my special Year of the Rabbit gifts to you.  Feel free to manipulate them in any way to make them work for you.  If you take them, and you make something with them, please let me know using the linky below.  I will come by and give you some comment love.

Juliet Arrighi

Year of the Rabbit

Every once in a while, I make something that I love so much, I can't even wait for the glue to dry before I share it.  This is one of those projects - an ATC to celebrate the Asian year of the Rabbit. 

Once I had it in my head that I wanted to do an oriental woman holding a rabbit, I knew that I had no choice but to draw it myself.  I had rabbit stamps and geisha stamps, but none that went together.  By drawing it myself, I guaranteed that they would both have the same style. 

I want to say something to those of you that think you can't draw.  I filled two solid pages of drawings before I did one that I liked enough to scan, and then I did even more to it after I scanned it.  That's how it is with drawing.  You don't just scribble something on a sheet of paper that looks perfect, you have to keep doing it over and over until your hand does what your brain keeps trying to tell it to do. 

There are a gazillion layers on this ATC.  There are two backgrounds, 4 punched circles for the hair, and so many little pieces for the outfit, it's crazy.  

What's even crazier is that I need eight of these for a swap.  Aaack!

Stamp R Us - animals
Be Crafty - new year
Alphabet - L is for Lady
Simply Create - punches

Juliet Arrighi

Nature Goddess ATC

Since I'm not hosting a technique swap any more, I thought I would play in Deb Lovett's swap.  I had been wanting to experiment with corrugated cardboard, and I had this great image from CS Designs that was perfect for the Bandana technique.

I love the texture of the corrugated cardboard, but I wasn't loving the color - I swiped some green distress on it, then gave it a wash of shimmery copper.  The Bandana technique is just fun to do.  Does it look crooked?  They all do.  It's the cardboard.  It doesn't like to be cut straight.

Corrosive Challenge - recycled material
Creative Inspirations Paint - favorite color
Paper Sundaes - distressing
Sweet Stampin - brown + 1
Stamp Insanity - monochrome
Digital Tuesday - tropical warmth

Juliet Arrighi

Origami butterflies

One of my Red Hat girlfriends came over yesterday for a playdate.  She had an origami butterfly pattern that she wanted to teach the ladies - she was wearing one as a pin, and the other ladies wanted one just like it.  Her only problem was that she didn't have a good supply of red and purple two-sided paper, so I told her we could make some.  So, she brought her butterfly pattern, and I pulled out my art supplies.

I had a good time making paper, but the paper that she liked best was one that I had made digitally!  I don't have a sample of it as a butterfly, but it is a background paper I had made for Red Hat cards.  Like my mother, I don't personally feel the need to have pictures of hats on my red hat clothing and jewelry - the color scheme is enough.  I think these butterflies are cute, though.  All they need are some pin backs.

One Stop Craft - more than one fold
Totally Gorjuss - hot colors
Fuzzy Wuzzy - animal
Stampin' Royalty - wings
Ooh La La - Bling it on
Card Ideas - Fabulous Folds
Juliet Arrighi

Lulu tag

I just joined the CS Designs group at Crafters Digital Art Center - It's a ning group, which means it's impossible to figure what is going on half the time, but if you like digital freebies and tutorials, there is a lot of good stuff in there.

Anyway, Chris (of CS Designs) gives the members of her group the Lulu Fashion Diva digi free for joining, so I felt like I ought to make something with it.
It's way different from what I usually make, but it was fun to put together.  I can always use a tag.  It's done with the Blended Glitter technique, and a bunch of ribbons, felt flowers, and stickers that have been sitting on my crafting desk unused for a long time - it's been a while since I've done anything like this!

There are other Lulu stamps here, if you like this style.  Chris has a lot of really different and fun stamps!

Crafty Emma - fairies (according to the CSDesigns website, Lulu is a fairy)
Fairy Tale - flowers
Stamp Something - cute
Tellen's Place - polka dots
Wags n Whiskers - Fairy
Little Red Wagon - one layer

Juliet Arrighi


Time to lighten up - all Milliande wanted for this page was for us to experiment with our art supplies by doing a still life with pears.  I wanted to play more with the idea of liquifying the water soluble oil pastels with gesso, so I sketched and colored in the image with the pastels, then mixed a little gesso with water and started dabbing.
Curiously, it was working the exact opposite of what I had expected - instead of blending the colors, it was setting and sealing them.  It wasn't even creamy!  I looked at the bottle and realized what I had done - I grabbed matte medium instead of gesso!

After I finished, I decided I could fix it a little.  I did get out some gesso for real, and colored over some the the worst parts, and blended it in.  It's not what I originally set out to do, but it was an interesting experiment.

Juliet Arrighi

the silence of women

The Milliande Art Community for Women tries very hard to be a place where women can find their voice through art, so it wasn't surprising that the idea of women's stories would be an art prompt.  However, When I thought about it, all I could picture were women's heads in jars.

After I got their heads in jars, I didn't really have anything else.  the words on the page are really very inadequate - they point to the easy scapegoat, but ignore the harder one - we silence each other.  We don't want to hear the voices.

I don't feel that a lot of women are finding their voice through art.  I think they are just trying to make pretty things.  It's so easy to be proud of something pretty, isn't it?

Juliet Arrighi

Broken mirror

Milliande asked us to think about a mirror as inspiration for this page.

It's about menopause.  That's all I have to say.

Other pages in this journal.

Juliet Arrighi

9 (sudoku)

For this page, Milliande asked us to use our favorite number for inspiration.  I don't really have a favorite number, but I felt that this was my chance to do the SuDoKu page that I wished I had done instead of a crossword page.

I like the symmetry of nines.  They make great grids, and you can't really play without them.  If you look, there are 9 zebras in this picture, too.

Other pages in this series.

Juliet Arrighi

Crepe paper inchies

I needed to make some heart inchies for a mingle, so when I saw these cute cupcakes at Designed2Delight, I knew they would be perfect!

The frosting is done with liquid applique, and the rest of the image is colored with markers.  I wanted an interesting background, but nothing that would overpower the tiny images.  I noticed a roll of pink crepe paper sitting on my desk - I glued it onto cardstock for strength, and when it draied, I layered the cupcakes on top.

The next inchies I needed to make needed to have text on them.  I have an old bible that is falling apart that I sometimes use - I thought I would cut squares out of it and layer little doves on top.  However, I couldn't find it anywhere, so I started looking for other ideas.  
The text here is from the obituary section of the newspaper - the print is very small!  I sponged a little distress ink on the text to soften it.  I decided to go with dragonflies instead of doves.  These were punched from scraps of the crepe paper I used for cupcake backgrounds, and the bodies were colored with marker.   

Cheerful Stamp Pad - relax ("eternal rest" is as relaxed as you can get!)
Tuesday Throwdown - valentine
Aly's Sunday Challenge - things with wings
Scrappy Frogs - cupcakes
Crafty Emma - no designer papers

Juliet Arrighi

Subconscious expression

Milliande Is tired of zebras, but I am not.  I am still injecting them into these assignments.  Today, she asked us to "take our lines for a walk", which is to say, start making marks and let them tell you what they want to be.

I started by making random blocks of color with my Portfolio water soluble oil pastels (I need a shorter name for these), then activating the color with a wet brush.  I walked away while the paint dried, and when I came back, the shapes suggested to me an old style arcade video game. 

If you knew anything about my weekend, you would know why I felt the need to do this.  It isn't great art, but it is excellent therapy.  I apologize in advance to anyone visiting my blog for pretty pictures.

My other pages for this zebra journal.

Juliet Arrighi


One of the things I told myself I would do this year is be more active in swapping inchies.  I prefer mingles to regular swaps in that with a swap, you get a wide variety of inchies from all different people, and with a mingle, you get a set from one person.  Since I am likely to use inchies on a card, I prefer to get sets.
I got these crowns from the Graphics Fairy, and I used packing tape transfers to apply them to these painted backgrounds.  I set them at an angle because sometimes that's what I want to receive - inchies set at an angle.  I hope whoever receives them appreciates them as I would.

Juliet Arrighi

Zebra Redux

Milliande has us reusing our leftovers today.  I had a lot of crossword leftovers, and my handmade stamp, and black stamped paper, and my gel pens were still sitting out.

I suppose this lends continuity to the journal.  There are a lot of random newspaper words that I cut out and added - they just seemed to speak to me.

My other pages in this series.

Juliet Arrighi

Zetti Valentines

I really needed to step away from the art journal for a little bit.  There is a zetti valentine swap on one of my ATCgroups, so I thought I would try that for a little while today.

Click to see full size.  Please. 

Zetti ATCs are a lot of work.  Not only do each of this little ATCs have at least 9 separate layers of various papers collaged together, there is the doodling.  There is no zetti without the pen work.

Bunny Zoe - Love
Lexi's Creations - Love
Paper Playtime - the work "love" (it's on two of them)
Mark's Finest Papers - hearts
Secret Crafter - Love
Phindy's Place - Valentines
Pals Paper Arts - Valentines
Sassy Studio - use up old stuff (everything except the faces, cut from the sales flyers)

Juliet Arrighi
Milliande wanted us to create a crossword puzzle-themed page today.
Not great.  Interesting idea, but since I don't do crosswords, I didn't really get into it.

My other pages in this series.

Juliet Arrighi


The assignment from Milliande today was to do a dragonfly.  It isn't a very artistic page, but I do like dragonflies a lot.  It's just that none of it came out the way I saw it in my head.

My other pages in this series.

Juliet Arrighi

lines (out of control)

The assignment was to use vertical lines.  I started with vertical lines, but somehow I lost control of them.
I used Portfolio pastels, white and black gesso, souffles and gel pens.  You would not believe the hours I spent on this.  Word to the wise - gesso creates awesome colors when mixed with the Portfolio pastels, but gel pen ink will not dry when used over gesso.  Not a good mix.
My other pages in this series.

Juliet Arrighi

text blocks

Milliande asked us to be artistic with our text.

The letters are not random; there is a message.  If you can make it out, email me (click my sig tag for a link to my email) and tell me what it says, and I will send you a prize, either a card, an ATC or piece of jewelry, as you prefer.

My other pages in this series.

Juliet Arrighi

zebra window

Two pages today.  Actually, one has a window in it (as directed), so you can see the other one.  

Again with the theme of the zebra as a nervous, fearful creature. 

My other pages in this series.
Juliet Arrighi

zebra spider

Is there no limit to what can be rendered as a zebra?  Milliande asked us to create a millipede collaged with these photos of striped socked feet.  I didn't feel the millipede, I went with a spider instead.
The face was cut from a newspaper ad for a nursing home.  Even after I zettied her, I felt that she was a sad figure.

I have a lot of sad in my zebra journal.  Lost, confused, rejected, sad.  I don't know why.

Juliet Arrighi

Zebra hand

Milliande introduced us to Guido Daniele, and in particular, his interpretation of a zebra.  Basically, this meant using a hand as a canvas for the zebra.  For me, I needed some context for the hand, so I when I found a photo of a girl with a hand covering her eyes, I decided to zebra-tize it.
This was colored with Portfolio water soluble pastels (not my favorite medium).  It was coming out okay until I put a mane on the zebra, which ruined it for me.  You can't  erase pastels, though, I was stuck.  Not my favorite page.
  Juliet Arrighi

zebra profile portrait

Day four challenge - paint a face with zebra accents.  For Milliande and many others, this means putting stripes on the face.  I saw it a little differently.  I pictured a woman, not unlike myself, trying to channel her inner zebra, and putting her hair in a fauxhawk, to look like a zebra's mane.

Needless to say, this type of painting with acrylics is very new to me.  Anyway, about the earring - when I painted this, and it was nearly dry, I was looking at it and it occurred to me that a woman like this, even with no makeup and no hair coloring, if she took the time to push her hair into a fauxhawk, she would also be wearing earrings, probably big gold ones.  I didn't want to paint any more, and I sincerely doubted my ability to render decent gold earrings, so I started rummaging through my stash to see if I had an actual gold earring I could glue in place.  Then I remembered - back in the seventies, I had these big button earrings that were zebra patterned, and I decided that if this woman was channeling her inner zebra, she would have earrings exactly like those.  I punched the circles from yesterday's stamped black paper, and deepened the white strips with gel pen.   They look incongruous with the rest of the painting, but I am not Vermeer; this is not a canvas, this is an art journal.
Juliet Arrighi