Saturday, 22 March 2014

Welcome to Marie ...

Welcome to Marie Johansson, our guest designer for March.

Hi there, I live in a small village in the north of Sweden. I have been addicted to scrapbooking for more than 9 years by now. I love that it makes me think and reflect about things that has happened to me and my family. And for me it is a way of relaxing after a hard days work as an Intensive Care Nurse.

At first when I found scrapbooking to be my new hobby, it was the colored and patterned papers that drew my attention. Then I started loving layering, and now I´m a complete mess.... I love playing around with gesso, paint and different spray inks/mists. I make layers using the different mediums and papers, journaling cards, stamps and all kinds of different embellishments. Even though I mess up my pages, I try to have some sort of structure to it all. 

I currently design for Linnie Blooms, the Color Room, Scrap & Music and the online magazine Allt om Scrap. Since I always look for new exciting creative challenges this Guest Designer spot really got my creative mood up!  

Hope you find my work inspiring and take time to stop by my blog:

Here is Marie's gorgeous interpretation of our inspiration this month - a stunning mixed media canvas using lots of texture and paint and ink techniques.

and two more samples of her work ...

Thank you  for joining us on ARTastic this month Marie, your work is so inspiring.

You still have time until the end of the month to upload your own take on this challenge.  We'd love to see what you can do with texture on your page and what inspiration you take from our delightful artwork this month.  

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Mid month reveal and our February winners ,,,

Welcome to our mid month reveal and the announcement of our February winners.

Before we get started I'd just like to offer a special tribute to Kirsty Lang who was a guest designer with us last year and who recently lost her courageous battle with cancer.  You were truly one of the beautiful people, Kirsty and we will miss your positive outlook on life and infectious laugh.  You left us way too soon.  Rest easy my friend.

We'd like to thank our main sponsors,  James from Alacraft and Julie from Time to Create for their generous support this year.

ARTastic followers can enjoy 20% off at Alacraft with discount code ARTS20.

Alacraft has free product giveaways every month. Please visit the site and enter your email address on the homepage or on the page indicated in the link and you will be automatically entered into the draw for $25 of free products for that month. People are welcome to enter as many months as they like, they just need to enter their email address each time.

 Alacraft is a family business originating from an established bricks-and-mortar store and stocks a range of quality materials including lace, ribbon, yarn, scrapbooking supplies, stickers, iron-on motifs, quilting fabric, craft flowers and much more.

  Check out Alacraft today!

Time To Create is a family business. We share a passion to create, share and develop the best that we imagine!  We only stock products that we use and believe in. Our stock is always priced at the keenest costing we can do. We support Australian manufacturers and many Australian suppliers and try to have as wide a variety as possible.

Try us and see.

Well the votes are in and I am happy to announce our Top 3 winners are ...

                           Kripa who has won a $25 gift voucher from Alacraft.  

Tone who has won a lovely prize from Time to Create.

Doreen who has won the Director's Prize.

and  Sweetscraps who is our random draw winner for February.

Could the winners please contact me at with their postal details.  Don't forget to grab our winners badge from the sidebar. 

Our Design Team favourite as voted on by her peers is Leanne who will receive a little something from me.

and now for our second team reveal of the month ....

We are working from this amazing piece of art ...

Lyn Butchart - Bluebirds

Criteria - Texture

"When it comes to texture usually let my papers and flowers do the talking. But I thought I would challenge myself and create texture on my background paper. I used tissue paper, ribbon, lace, twine, metal embellies, hessian and felt to create the base. I then covered this in Gesso to meld it together then got creating with glimmermists, stamps and distress paints. I used the tarnished brass distress paint to colour the flowers and other bits in the cluster, linking it all together. This goes out to my good friend Kirsty xxooxx"

“When I look at this painting, I think of the freedom that birds have..and I thought of my chooks straight away!  They have never been let out of their yard, in case the dogs hurt them, but I have only just discovered that the dogs don’t bother them at all.  So I feel like they are now free and can scratch around in the backyard and do what chooks do!

Texture......YES that is pea straw from the garden and a small bit of gravel.  I have layered the leaves and and the flower stickers for more dimension and strips of blue tissue paper in the sky and that lovely cork bird, which I painted.  I really enjoyed doing this!


On my layout I have tried to create the texture and depth by using different
materials, paints, stencils, some dry embossing and stamps.


"Bluebirds" by Lyn Butchart  really inspires me to "make a mess" and work with mixed medias.
I started with a flower patterned paper and made a few splodges with white acrylic paint , a bit of random  stamping, stencils and gesso. A layer of thin Sizoweb
some more gesso and spray ink, chicken wire die cuts corrugated cardboard and laces to create lots and lots of different texture with more gesso, acrylic paint and spray ink. 2 seagulls got a "new home" on the page as the Inspiration picture is all about birds :)


I've taken a quirky approach to this month's challenge piece. I've used an A3 sized piece of heavy watercolour paper and painted the background with acrylics overlaid in sections with texture paste. I added details to make a scene, using the same materials.
Birds were stamped and coloured (look at my blog for the details). They were then beaded for added texture. I also used wool and die-cut cogs which were also embossed.


This month I was really inspired first by the movement in the paint of the inspiration piece, and also the colors.  I decided that this hot glue technique would compliment that well.  Then, I added the little birds.  They are white tissue rolled between my fingers, cut and bent.  


I have used paint as my texture base and taken the bird aspect of the artwork to create my own bird scene.

Beautiful pages everyone !!
We'd love to see your interpretations of our inspiration this month.

 Remember we happily accept all forms of paper crafting for your entry including digital and encourage international submissions.  All we ask is that you create an new entry for our challenge although you are most welcome to combine with a sketch and/or colour challenge if you wish.  You have until 11.55pm on the last day of the month to submit your entry.

Next week we will be introducing you to our third guest designer of the year, Marie Johansson.

Saturday, 8 March 2014

ARTastic 3T's in March ...

Welcome to our March round of ARTastic 3T's - Tips, Tricks and Techniques where each month one of our creative team will show you are few quick tips and/or techniques to use on your layouts.

This month we feature Elaine Schoof with a lovely tutorial to help jazz up that chipboard we all have sitting in our stashes to create something special for our layouts.

Using chipboard on your Layouts

Raw chipboard looks great on layouts but I also love to alter them.  I am going to show you how I altered this chipboard tree for a layout I did.

The materials I have used for dressing up this chipboard tree is gesso paint, ink, stamp and buttons.

Firstly paint your chipboard with gesso. It's up to you if you do one or two coats. Here I have done one coat which makes it a duller white and also the paint strokes are more obvious.

Once the gesso is dry,  stamp over top. I have used a script stamp but any background type stamp works and looks great. To add some dimension I added buttons on random
holes of the tree.  To make it more interesting I have used twine with the buttons, one as a knot and the other as a bow. For the other buttons I have used cotton string. Using buttons
allows you to add colours from your layout to your chipboard, tying it in together.

For my layout I have also used chipboard butterflies. To make these, you glue the raw butterflies to the back of pattern paper. Once it's dry cut around the butterfly and sand down the edges with sandpaper to smooth down the edges. It also can add a small white edge to your butterfly. Add stick on crystals for a bit of bling. This method works well on solid chipboard shapes.

Here is my finished layout using my chipboard tree and butterflies. Two butterflies I left raw and sponged some brown ink on the edges, just to soften them up.

TIP- if you use chipboard shapes that presses out of surrounding chipboard, you can use the negative as a mask for texture paint or misting as I have done here.

We'd love to see what you can do with your chipboard.  Perhaps you could try this technique and add some chipboard to a page for our current challenge.  Remember you have until the end of the month to submit your entry.

Saturday, 1 March 2014

It's March on ARTastic ...

Welcome to our challenge this month.  Another wonderful inspirational artwork for you to admire.  So very many possibilities for this piece - will the birds inspire you or perhaps the colours?  Is  it  the sky that catches your eye or the wonderful gold texture?  We'd love to see what this artwork inspires in your creative heart.  Please support us in our endeavour to bring you a quality challenge blog - we would love to see your entry.

This month we welcome Kylie from Shop and Crop Scrapbooking as our monthly sponsor.  

As a family business we strive to bring you all the latest from the Scrapbooking and Papercraft Industry, all our staff are very experienced and talented scrapbookers...We pride ourselves on great customer service, with a quick turn around of your orders of instock items.  We cater to both the online customers and through our store front at 10/335 Hillsborough Road Warners Bay,  We love nothing better than for everyone to drop in, have a coffee on us and browse and enjoy all the great scrapbooking products.

We also thank James from Alacraft and Julie from Time to Create for their continued support throughout this year.

Lyn Butchart - Bluebirds

Criteria - Texture

Lyn Butchart draws her inspiration from the vibrant, textural and ethereal spirit of nature.
Born in 1951 in Manildra NSW of Aboriginal Irish Swedish descent, Lyn has developed a unique individual style ranging from contemporary to abstract. Her fascination with the ocean inspires intricate underwater scenes, a theme she is renowned for.  She undertakes extremely large works on paper, some of the largest in Australia, and incorporates strong vibrant colours that bring harmony and balance to her paintings.  Lyn is a self taught artist with over 25 years tutoring experience. She has participated in many solo and group exhibitions, and her work is held in private and corporate collections worldwide. Her work has also been featured in numerous national art magazines featuring watercolour and mixed media works.  Lyn lives and works in Grafton northern New South Wales, and travels frequently to conduct workshops in regional areas around Australia.

and now the amazing interpretations from the first half of our design team ...

This was a beautiful inspiration by Lyn Butchart titled "Bluebirds". I was
really moved by the feelings when I first saw this.

I have worked on a mixed media canvas here with my 'All A Flutter', with layers of impasto, paints, gelatos & stencils, paper serviettes/napkins mod podged, inks, little Prima birdies, flowers & leaves... & I really loved playing with all those mediums.


I have used a lot of texture to create this canvas. I used dress making patterns, paint, ink, rubons, paper, chipboard and twine.


As I began thinking about this month's challenge I looked at my Wall of Texture - being embossing plates.  So versatile and just a little neglected. Check put my BLOG though as I added even more texture.

Can you guess what with?


Inspired by the birds, I decided to create a “scene” for my birdie photo.  With three layers of background paper, I have crumpled the top layer which I think creates a great base for a textured layout.


I used modelling paste and masks to make texture (small and big dots) on the background. I wanted to stick to the colors on the inspiration piece and used watercolors to create a blue background. I also added a bird. (Blue and birds are not requested).


 I was really inspired by the artwork. I take a lot of bird photos throughout the year (I'm a twitcher - that's a bird watcher!), and I've been looking for a challenge to use these three Sea Eagle pics. It was quite difficult with the pale background to get the textures I wanted. Raptors (eagles, hawks, etc) are my favourite birds. I look forward to seeing them more than any other family group. How did I do it - with layers. Lots and lots of layers - some quite transparent!

Please upload the DIRECT link to your actual entry with the link tool on the LEFT by 11.55pm on March 31st, 2014. We'd love to see your new paper, digital, or off the page entries.  Please no back-dated submissions.  You may combine with a sketch and/or colour/technique challenge and international entries are always welcome.  

Please pop back on the 8th for The ARTastic 3T's - Tips, Tricks and Techniques brought to you this month by the team member Elaine Schoof.  I'm sure you will love what she has done to inspire you.