I am doing a new watercolor series, called Scatter Sunshine. (soul painting, intuitive painting) call it what you want!

I named it after a hymn that I love, and how I felt the first time I painted for the pure joy of it in a long time and then to send that to a friend. I had a wonderful spirit about me the whole day and it made my soul happy!

Really it's an intuitive practice, there is no self-criticism when I am done painting, there is no what can I learn from it, it's just art, the process of putting paint onto paper and seeing what happens.

 There are so many ways to paint and to create, I needed to re-focus on my Why I am painting instead of just painting to learn. (it's been three years since I picked up a brush and I need to feel like I am playing now more than learning.)

I feel like half the battle in learning watercolor is in the time and practice in just learning. So I will be Scattering Sunshine to those that need a little art and creativity in their life!
Because at the end of the day...

Creativity is meant to be shared.

Want to join me in this fun endeavor? Subscribe to my blog, Facebook or Instagram or YouTube Channel

When it comes right down to it, Life is too short for me to keep my playful studies of watercolors! It would be nice to brighten someone else's day. Who knows if you leave me a comment on my social media channels you might get a watercolor from me!

I can't give all the credit to myself, Kateri, has helped me see the joy of painting is just to paint, and it's so addictive! Check out her lessons on her youtube channel.

Art Therapy for Stampers

I was so excited when I took a workshop with an Art therapist that I have enjoyed learning about Art Therapy!

Why Art therapy helps with anxiety and other mindfulness activities? The idea is to useArt Therapy to get to the other side of things, to help keep your emotions intact so that you can talk about your feelings through color, shapes, and lines (design elements.)

 I think Art Therapy is the best for working through your emotions. 

So here are some of my thoughts and how I am making it work with my stamp collection.

1. I wanted to use exercises from 250 brief Creative Practical Therapy Techniques 
~ I focused on the self-esteem and anxiety chapters to start with. (I did the exercises from that book that I thought would help me the most first.)

2. I found stamps and other ideas to make art journal pages, I picked the stamp because I had an emotional attachment to it, so I utilized that to help me!

3. I had absolutely no rules, just to paint, and to be mindful of what and how I was feeling when I was painting it.

4. Art Journal, I wasn't in the mindset to play with new techniques, just to play with the medium to see what happens on the paper. I wanted my stamp- art therapy session to be uplifting, and a place that would make me happier and a bit more at peace with my soul. Art Therapy with my stamping and paper supplies helps me with that!

If I liked what I painted, I did cut the paper to size and then I made them into a card.

Rainbow burst Techinique

The vibrancy and translucent properties to watercolor have makes my heart sing for sure

These cards are so easy to make!

a bit more tips on Liquid watercolor:

use lots of water and play with the water to pigment ratio!

Use a clean wet brush when changing up colors.

Learn to control liquid watercolor by learning to not control it, let the pigment blend on paper!

Keep it simple! what you are really doing is creating a wash, and playing with colors. Have fun painting and you find lots of beautiful things about watercolor!

I like to keep a stock of watercolor card panels cut to the size that I like to use, so when I want to play with color I have paper ready to go!

Use mater to create gradients with the pigment!

These paintings look like a lot of work, but I let the three pigments do all the work, I chose a Cyan, Magenta, and a Cool/Lemon Yellow. from Taylored Expressions, the colors were called Lollipop, Lemon Meringue, and Cookie Monster. So for less than $15 I can get a whole bunch of colors and play out of those tubes of liquid watercolor! So fun right?!!!

So do you use liquid watercolor? if so I would love to learn more about how you use it. If you are afraid of liquid watercolor, what is stopping you from playing with it?

Happy Painting! 

Two fold Joy: 5 Minute color meditaion

Got 5 minutes to play with color? Of course, you do!

I love color and pattern play, This is a simple 5-minute card, and yet it's so fun and artsy to make. I consider this a two-fold joy card: I get to play with color and that gets me in a happy mood, and I get to give this to my son's Speach pathologist and Occupational therapist! Win-win!

I got this Rainbow Idea from Lisa Solomon's class over at Creativebug, you guys she is amazing and so talented!

The liquid watercolor and stamps came from Taylored Expressions. I love their stamps for sentiments!

For the water media mat, I used the Waffle flower Media mat - that I love!!!
This color play is fun for art journaling as well!


some links have affiliated links when you click on a link you are supporting my blog by purchasing a class or buying from WaffleFlower.

creativity and time managment- Case Study allert!

In this blog post I am going to answer these questions:
How do we create more opportunities to use our creativity?
Why we need creativity in our life right now?

these cards are all ones I have colored from stamping
ahead of time and coloring them during jury duty! 
Do you stamp things on card panels and then stuff them in an envelope so that when you have a chance to paint or color you can whip a card panel out and color it? Yep, that is what I did with this card.

I actually got called to Jury Duty, and while preparing for the long day I brought my envelope with card panels and off I went. The jury selection took 3 days! I was not chosen and can home with some panels that Ic ould embellish and make into cards.

So often I hear: I want to create, but don't know how? or I go into my craft room or studio with plans to create and I just end up "watching TV or killing an hour on Facebook or Pinterest. I get it. totally get it! Been there, done that a lot!

I love vintage garage sale stamps!
this is one of my favorite garage sale finds!
When I hear of other card makers that are more doer's than thinkers, I started studying what they do to be more like the doers than the Thinkers. I believe it's in time management.

I looked back at my Jury selection days (very long 3 days) and when I first busted out my watercolor markers I was sitting by an older lady that is a retired school teacher. she didn't want to color but wanted to watch me, ok I said and that was that. I was a bit fearful of getting out my colors like a little girl and started coloring. I was fearful of what others may have thought. (so silly right?) and yet I had started more conversations, It started to turn into talking about creativity and it broke the ice in so many levels I was convinced that if we all carried around colors and a sketchbook the world would be a better place!

The second day, I ended up sitting next to business gentlemen. In my mind I was thinking, well, he isn't going to be much of a conversation starter, I might as well color. He starts talking to me about creativity and asks me questions and we had a lovely conversation.

I really believe that creativity breaks down walls.  Creativity is so much part of humanity that when we are in the act of creating it connects each other just by drawing, or sketching or coloring. Creativity is a wonderful way to break the ice. It's as if you are breaking the ice for other's to see that life is really sweet even if you are waiting for days for the jury selection to be selected! hah!

Why we need creativity in our life right now?

How can we create more opportunities to use our creativity?

Loads of studies have shown that we need to be using our creativity for mental and brain growth and function.
Basically, the more creativity that we use the better our mental state will be.

Or heaven forbid creativity is an outlet for so many people.
Creativity plays a huge part in being mindful.

Take my simple example of busting out my well-loved envelope of card panels with my watercolor markers, I opened doors to communication faster than trying to make small talk with strangers. I was very mindful at the time of coloring, that mindfulness helped pass the time not just for me but for the people that were watching me. It helped make light of a situation that no one wanted to be in.

We need that well-loved manila envelope that has card panels to color because it brings joy into our lives and others. Creativity is meant to be shared.

Day 3- I sat by two nice ladies and offered to let them color along with me. Creativity is meant to be shared! Share Joy- right?

How do we create more opportunities to use our creativity?

1. Go to a family gathering- have a reason to make a card or a painting for a family member You might be surprised that the next time you see them they say- I framed that small card or painting you gave me, I love it so much, thanks for thinking of me. That will give you more momentum to paint more, and share more. I love what Julie Cameron
 says in Walking in this world:
Contemplating a piece of work, we do better to think who is this work for? Whom will it serve? rather than How will it serve me? Once we find a path for our work to be of service—even if that path is merely to create a wonderful role for a friend—then our work goes smoothly forward. It is not about “us” anymore. We have retired as self-conscious creator and aligned ourselves again with all of creation, a worker among workers, a friend among friends. When we do so, our work is less buffered by our own harsh fears. Our fears are set aside every time we simply ask again, “How can I make this work more serviceable?”
Cameron, Julia. Walking in This World (Artist's Way). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

This is one of the many reasons I love to make cards to give to others!

2. Having the end in mind. When creating more Opportunites to be creative and to use our creativity what we are really saying is that I have something to say that needs to be put into an art form. So be strategic about it. You bought a stamp, or a tube of paint for a reason- use it! I love the quote that says, the only Paint wasted is when it's left inside the tube. So paint, draw, art journal it! You will be glad you did. Don't let your materials go unused! 

3. Plan.  I knew that I was going to have a whole day of waiting around for the jury selection. So I brought my stamped panels in my well-loved manila envelope to pull out and color. I planed on having some time to create even when it wasn't the perfect place. (I doubt there is ever a perfect place to create at.)

Other ideas to help facilitate creativity: 
cut paper to the size you need, before you want to make a project. I can't tell you how helpful, liberating, and freeing it has been to cut up a whole package of 12x12 paper for cards! or how helpful it has been to paint 5x7's when the paper is already cut for you!
  Doing a little bit of prep work goes a long way.
Another best practice to create more Opportunites to be creative is to have your creative space always clean and ready to go!

I hope this blog post has given you back some mojo and you are feeling excited to get back into stamping and coloring! I know I sure am!

Happy Creating!

Share more than just Kindness

When sharing your cards with others do you get a sense of what you are really doing? it's 2 fold joy! 

Here are my insights: when we share kindness through a card it's so much more than just a card:

Kindness matters so much in our world. I am so happy to have this stamp from Taylored Expressions. Sentiments are so much more than just the words, The typography is perfect for this card.

Crafting a simple and sweet card to give to someone that has helped you is the essence of card making, the thought that came back to me often when making these card and other cards like it is, it is a wonderful world where I can show my gratitude for someone by using my talents to brighten up someone's day just by sending a card to them, It's as if  the universe is yelling at you- use your creativity to brighten up someone else's day! I love it! 

I used Taylored Expressions' Plant KIndness stamp- I fell in love with it as soon as it was released and had to buy it!

I used my Silhouette PixScan to cut the kindness and banner out- crazy easy how that works look into it if you haven't. I make cards so much faster now that I have PixScan!

Let's talk about paper for a sec.

I used paper that I got in 2012. Yep, it was time to use it up. I am done hoarding paper. It seems like I want tons of paper but only uses a little bit, Does that sound like you too?

 Now if the paper "speaks" to me and I can find a simple way to use it up, it's cut before I can have doubts about cutting it up.  Easier said than done!

Prep work is worth its weight in gold

Here is a great tutorial for you on how this lady cuts her paper up before she starts to use it. I love it. I got this idea from a Stamping up demonstrator- a dear friend that says every time she gets a new package of designer paper she cuts it up into usable pieces. Since I have started cutting up my paper into more usable pieces I am so surprised at how much faster the process of making cards have been for me! Prep work is worth its weight in gold!

For me, it's two-fold when using up a pack of designer paper- I am able to use it for what I really want to use it for- (Cards) and... I get to see the paper as it is for designing purposes, all the while I am saving myself lots of time by not second-guessing which piece of precious paper I might use up. if it's cut, it's done, right? hah! No more thinking about if I should or shouldn't cut it up!

I took a stack of paper that I recently cut up from My Minds Eye I had 6 years ago. and started to play with pattern paper and backgrounds. I came up with a simple way of making banners and adding my stamped embellishment to the paper panel that will become my card.

If you want to learn how to use pattern paper like a pro I totally recommend this class from MyBluPrint.

Asking What if? Is really like saying to yourself  I am ready to push my limits just a bit further.

I was hesitant to cut all my beautiful paper up to start with. I really want to create with it... What if... Asking What if is really like saying to yourself  I am ready to push my limits just a bit further. So what if my paper gets cut? It's not like your paper owes you anything right? It's meant to be used even if you don't love what came from it.

I am so happy I cut it up and used it! These cards are going to be perfect to send to friends that brighten up my day!

What have you done that changed the way you have been making cards? I would love to know! this is just one of many ways I have learned to use prep work to make my workflow easier!

I am sharing these cards over at Fusion Card Challenge- it's all about Kindness cards!

Watercolor vs Copic- a Friendly Discussion

I am a watercolor lover. I love how the pigment wooshes with the water on the paper, I love seeing the pigments mix and blend on the paper, its a surprise and I love when it works out beautiful without too much caressing. Every time I play with watercolor I feel like I am bringing into my life peace, the kind that makes me giddy, so I have to share it!

I love stamps that will share all the beautiful properties that watercolor can do. This stamped image for a card was perfect for watercolor!
one of my favorite ways to play with watercolor! 
I used Qor Watercolor, and love the simplicity that watercolor brings, I love how the watercolor gives an atmospheric look to it, and that you don't have to fuss too much to make this watercolor card panel look beautiful!

I have a good friend that loves to color with Copic Markers, Chris over at Purple Lake Stamps and I got together and thought we would share our completely different styles with you! She is coloring this stamp with Copics and will explain why she loves Copic Markers, on the flip side, I am sharing why I love watercolor!

Go to Chris's blog to see why she loves Copic Markers and a video tutorial that will show you how she colored the Stamp with Copics. One Stamp, two different styles.

So I would love to know, do you color with both? I have used both, I am drawn to watercolor for all the amazing effects you can achieve with it.

Do you love watercolor for the same reason?
Why do you like Copics? (I am sure I am missing something about why Copics are so amazing. I am just not buying it.)

I love this class, Highly recommended!
I would love to know your insights, leave a comment below, and if you are new to Watercolor, follow me on Facebook, or follow me on my blog, I post lots of great resources for beginners!

On another thought, I love using Mixed Media paper and Archival ink to stamp images for card panels. So if you are new to watercolor cards, get a good pad of Mixed Media paper and some Archival ink and you will be set!

Looking to learn more about watercolor? I have lots of great tutorials and resources:

CreativeBug has some wonderful watercolor artists that offer classes

I love Craftsy or Bluprint, they have wonderful watercolor classes that fit your interest!

Angela Fehr has a wonderful class that I have mentioned above, click here for the class. This is my favorite class for watercolor cards.

BlickArts has a great deal on watercolor and free shipping when you spend $35 (just in time for back too school)

Free shipping on orders of $35 or more.  Exclusions apply.
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