Thursday, June 26, 2008

Let's plan a party

How does early August look for a Splatters Platters party? I received a follow up e-mail from Tiffany with details about scheduling a party at the Firefly Studio.

Here's the highlights

  • Parties should be scheduled 3 to 4 weeks in advance to assure supplies are available.
  • We need 10 to 16 participants who agree to have all proceeds from the party directed to The Centers for Youth and Families.
  • The cost to participate is $35/person
  • There can be no parties on Saturday at the Firefly Studio.
  • The Centers will send a thank you letter stating the charitable portion of their gift to each person who participates.
  • Each guest keeps the piece they paint. They may pick it up from The Firefly Studio once it has gone through the firing process.

The party can actually be held somewhere other than Firefly Studio if the host picks up the pieces, paints, and tools and returns them to be fired. Since we’ll need a large group to participate and this could be a messy endeavor, I figure it's easier to go to Firefly unless we need the party to be on a Saturday. In that case, I’ll make arrangements to pick things up and we can plan to paint at my house.

Tiffany recommends having a theme for the party and suggested several really good ones. We can do one of these, think of our own, or keep it simple and just enjoying talking while we paint. We would provide the refreshments and other goodies for our party.

Ideas they recommend:

  • Wine and Cheese Party – personalize your own wine glass or paint a cheese platter. Invite a wine expert to come and talk about wine. Serve wine and cheese.
  • Beer Party – paint a beer stein and have a demonstration by Diamond Bear Brewery. Serve Beer and Pretzels.
  • Garden Party – paint a planter and invite your garden club and a master gardener to speak. Serve fun snacks.
  • Holiday Party – paint a holiday ornament, plate for Santa, etc. Use red, green and white paint. Serve holiday food.
  • Ice Cream Party – paint an ice cream cone or bowl and serve/build your own sundaes.
  • Tea Party – paint a tea pot. Host your own tea party.
  • Popcorn Party – paint a bowl for popcorn, serve popcorn and sodas, show a movie.
  • Princess Party – paint a princess crown. Have guests wear crowns and they can be a princess for a day.

Let me know how August looks for you and if you have any ideas for our party.

Hope you each enjoy a celebration of our independence today. May our troops be blessed and safe until they are home at last.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

I've been tagged!

Six unimportant things about me:
  • I hate to back up files. Being OCD, I'm always anxious something will be left out, won't work later, etc.
  • I am a terrible procrastinator especially if I don't feel I have time to do things the way I want them done.
  • I wear my retainer almost every night since I paid for braces and suffered through wearing them as an adult.
  • Mascara makes my eyes itch.
  • My work space is currently in a mess which makes me feel uncreative.
  • My contacts decided to self destruct today, which made the commute home very interesting. I'm happy to report I did arrive safely, though.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Model Magic

Stuff made from Model Magic.

Have you seen this stuff from Crayola? My sister gave me left-overs from my niece's school project. It's cheap, comes in different colors, and air dries quickly. When dry, it is very light weight. It holds details pretty well, too. I know it can be colored with markers but I haven't experimented with paints yet. The problem with marker ink is slow drying time.

Model Magic colored with marker ink.

The little piece I colored red left smudges on my fingers and the table. Once dried, Model Magic feels kinda like foamies. It doesn't break if you drop it but it was no match for Gunner the Pomeranian's teeth. (Note the gash above the lip of this little devil, who is also missing a horn after his run in with the dog. He faired better than his model magic brethren who were all eaten.) It's non-toxic but as dogs seem to like to eat it, I'd store it high if you have pets. Create sheets with a pasta roller and it can be stamped. I'm not sure super fine details would stamp but the chunky one I used worked just fine.

Model Magic seems to be tasty to dogs.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Forget Me Not

I stumbled across an interesting site called photomuse from a link on the ICP Web site, which I found on The Frontal Cortex blog. I came across images from a 2005 exhibit called Forget Me Not: Photography and Remembrance. Take a look at some photos from the collection:

Portrait of a young woman with wax flower wreath from exhibit on
Makers unknown (American),
Portrait of a young woman with wax flower wreath,
Albumen print, copper plate with impressed words “At Rest”, wax flowers and butterflies, woven human hair, wooden frame with glass
87.2 x 82.0 x 19.0 cm
Private Collection

Portrait of husband and wife on their wedding day from exhibit on
Makers unknown (American),
Portrait of husband and wife on their wedding day,
Albumen print on card (cabinet card), rosette, veil, wooden frame with glass
40.0 x 31.5 cm
Private Collection

These remind me of Denise's collages--only without witty stories or funny punchlines. See the press release from this exhibit. I really wish I could have seen this exhibit in person but the catalog will have to suffice. I can hardly wait until it arrives.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Twice as witchy

My twin friends just had a birthday and we are taking them to dinner next Friday night to celebrate. Here are twin surprises for them. I had fun making these witches today. I printed them on my laser printer from my clip art CD. I then used gel pens, pearl ex, and layers of paper with foam dots for dimension. I also used a couple of tiny jewels to embellish them. I made a couple of extra witches so they are sure to pop up soon in another box or two.

Detail of paper witch.

Two framed pieces with paper witches.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Tiffany says...

I received an e-mail response from Tiffany today. Here's what she says:
"Hi Stacie!
Thank you for your email! I am so excited you are interested in hosting a painting party for your friends. This is a new twist to our splatters platters and we are excited by the interest. We are actually meeting with our Splatters Platters Chair soon to solidify some of the details. I will contact you with more details soon. Thanks again for your interest and support for Splatters Classic and The Centers."

I'll keep you posted on what I learn.
Hope you have a wonderful weekend. Happy crafting! : )

Thursday, June 12, 2008

More Splatters

I get e-mails from Hot in Little Rock most everyday. And guess what yesterday's topic was? Splatters! Here's what they had to say about it:

"Are you jealous of those kids’ parties going on at the paint-your-own-pottery stores? Whenever we take our kids to a birthday party at one, it’s hard to leave without pulling up a chair and grabbing some greenware ourselves. Well…here’s your chance to make your dreams come true, and the dreams of all your friends!

Every year, The Centers for Youth & Families puts on “Splatters: Another Fine Mess” in October. This fun event, coupled with an always sold-out golf tournament, features lots of art and platters painted by fabulous local artists. Well this year, they’re starting early. Not only will they have their big party in October, but they’ve created a new event called “Splatters Platters.”

These mini-events are coordinated by anyone who wants to throw a party for The Centers. You can have the party at Firefly Studios or at your home. Just invite at least ten of your friends to paint a platter and donate the cost to The Centers. The pieces painted are you and your guests to keep.

So throw a wine party and paint wine coolers, or a coffee party and paint coffee mugs, or a Razorback party and paint some party plates for tailgating season! Whatever you want, Firefly will work with you to throw the best painting party ever – and it’s all for a great cause: helping the kids and families in Arkansas who need it the most."

I'll let you know all the particulars when I hear back from Tiffany and maybe we can put together our own mini event!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Craft for a cause

I received information in the mail about Splatters this week. Splatters: Another fine mess is the annual fund raiser for the Center for Youth and Families. Artists can submit their own piece of art, a platter painted in their own medium, or a platter painted at The Firefly Studio in Little Rock to benefit the Centers. Many moons ago, I painted a platter for them. Here's a picture of the unfired piece.

Tree design with gold leaves painted in glaze on ceramic platter.

Splatters will be held October 12 from 6:30 - 9:00 at the Pleasant Valley Country Club. This year, a juried art process will be added in addition to the non-juried platters. 50 pieces will be accepted for display and sale through this process. The top 10 will receive honorable mention and those 10 artists will get a return of 50% of the auction price. To submit your piece, e-mail no later than August 15, 2008. Images should be no larger than 8x10 and 72DPI. Artists will be notified the status of their piece no later than September 15, 2008.

The platters will not be juried but are very popular at the auction. Platters can be picked up at The Firefly beginning July 1, 2008. You can paint it there or take it home. September 1 is the deadline for turning in all Splatters Platters to the Centers Foundation office.

For more information, call Tiffany at (501) 666-9436 or e-mail The Firefly Studio is located at the Village in Pleasant Valley (I 430 and Rodney Parham Road). They are right next to the Dixie Cafe and in the same shopping center as Wild Oats Market (formerly Beans and Grains) and Chili's. According to, the store number is 501-225-1403 and their hours are M-S from 10:00-6:00.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Living on…

I was reading on The Frontal Cortex blog about the limits of technology to capture the world around us and early fears that photographs and cinema would make art and artists obsolete. I found the quote Lehrer posted from one early cinema critic really interesting.

“…but with movement, action, familiar gesture and the words out of their mouths, then death will not longer be absolute, final.”

How comforting I find the images of my Dad, who will be gone 7 years this month. It is strange to me that I find comfort in the still images; frozen bits of memories of those dear to me, yet seeing movies starring actors who have died makes me feel sort of sad and empty. As if somehow seeing their familiar gestures and hearing the words from their mouths emphasizes that they are now lost to us.

My Dad as a young boy with his pup.

Working as a drafter.

Getting married.


Monday, June 9, 2008

Ghostly images

Lately I’ve been using a technique in my shadow boxes that incorporates stamped transparencies "painted" with Pearl Ex powders. I stamped images on transparency film with Staz-on ink, then colored them with Pearl Ex using my Stampin-up aqua painter filled with acrylic floor wax. I really like how these layer in the boxes and I’ve found them much easier to incorporate than glass slides. The only thing I haven’t had much success with is using embossing powder on transparencies as it warps and shrinks when I heat the powder. As it cools, the embossing powder wants to chip of the slick surface.

Transparencies stamped and colored with Pearl Ex powders.
And here's a box that incorporates Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum with scrolls stamped then embossed with gold embossing powder on transparency film.

Shadow box with stamped transparency.This is a fun technique to use on cards with windows. Here’s one I made. If you try this technique, I’d love to see your results.

Windowed-card with stamped transparency. Windowed-card with stamped transparency.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Finished at last!

mini art quiltI finally found my staple gun and attached my mini art quilt to its frame. What do you think? I'm not entirely pleased with it but I'm ignoring my inner critic since I actually finished it.

I'm donating this piece to Big Brothers, Big Sisters of North Central Arkansas for their auction at the annual Karaoke for a Cause fund-raiser on July 24. I hope it finds a loving home and also helps further a good cause. For more information on this event, call 888-393-9027 or visit their Web site.

If you haven’t heard the good news about Denise’s new endeavor,
hop over to her blog to read about it. I owe Denise a big thanks for pointing me in the right direction on Google Reader last week. It makes reading all the blogs I love much easier--especially since I seem to have developed an aversion to sitting at my computer after work hours.