Can you believe it?! I’m back and it’s not even Fancy Friday! Thank you to Christine Dionne of www.stampwithchristine.com for giving me the little push I needed to create a blog post by nominating me for this challenge. I am very honored that Christine thought of me and I will admit that I turned a few shades of red blushing over her very kinds words in nominating me. … the truth is, I find Christine very inspiring both in her friendly nature and her stamping style and that she chose me along with Krista Frattin for her nominations is a big honor. Your nomination and kind words are very sweet and much appreciated. Thank-you Christine! Be sure to stop at Christine’s blog to read her ‘get to know you’ answers and to see why I find her so inspiring!
Here’s how the challenge works! I’m going to answer four questions about me and my stamping style/process and then I’m going to nominate two others to do the same for you next Monday November 10th. Look for their posts then. It was difficult to choose just two people, SO many people inspire me for different reasons so be sure to read on to see why I chose who I chose. Sorry my post is only coming to you on Tuesday.. yesterday was one of those days that just didn’t stop until we were into today! We pretty much literally ran from one appt to another all day! Speaking of all of those appointments, I haven’t updated here about how Ryan is doing since he had surgery for Thyroid cancer. We met with his Cancer Care Dr. for his 6 month check up yesterday and all looks great, his numbers are good, no further treatment is necessary at this time and we are definitely counting our blessings!
Now, on with the questions so I can get to sharing some projects with you.. oh, answering things about myself is so hard.. here goes!
Question #1) What am I working on right now?
As is typical for me, a whole variety of projects. With a variety of different types of clubs and classes I’ve always got an array of samples and project to make. Next week, I’ll be holding a Hello December Project Life Class (based on the make and takes we got to create at Founders Circle) so that, stamp a stack samples and Scrapbook Club projects. What is most pressing though is my November class schedule and sorting back orders for my Blendabilities club members, they have been waiting patiently but anxiously for their Old Olive markers that have now arrived!
Question #2) How does my work differ from others in my Genre?
That is a tough question! I’m not sure if I could say my work differs from others more than it may differ from project to project or class to class. I love that sometimes a simple project packs the most punch and like Christine, when I incorporate such projects into a class I try to add in a little something extra in the way of tip or trick or I’ll provide an alternate version to show my stampers how to step it up a little if they’d like to. .. and really, I think most of us do this so again I really can’t say that my work is much different at all. While my work may not specifically be different than others, I love that the same set of tools and supplies can yield such different results from one stamper to the next. That was very evident during my run on the Artisan Design team last year, we all got the same box of supplies to create from but we all came up with such different creations! I still look to these girls as a source of inspiration all the time!
I wanted to share a project with you here to show you a sample of two variations of the same project. This card was inspired by two separate but equally gorgeous creations that were made by two fellow demonstrators. A Curvy Keepsakes Box creation that another demonstrator, Darla Watson shared and the swap that I received from Cynthia Millan at Founders Circle.
Here are both versions of the card that I created. I’ll start with White Christmas, clean and simple.
And here’s a more stepped up version of the same card.
I’m not sure if this technique has a formal name (if you know it, please feel free to share), but in the mean time we’ll run with double-embossing and Iridescent Ice backgrounds because that’s exactly what I did on these cards.
I started by stamping the images from White Christmas with Versamark Ink (I stamped all images before applying any white powder) and then heat set with White Embossing Powder. After those images were set and cooled, I patted the entire piece of Night of Navy Cardstock down with Versamark and then sprinkled and heat set with Iridescent Ice Powder. The first card was the quick and simple version, I literally made it in under 5 minutes while my stampers were working on creating Cynthia’s card at my technique club last week. It was a hit! We also made Darla’s keepsake box as our 3D project at club and in my curvy keepsakes box class. With the fancy touches of silver ribbon and the All is Calm Snowflake on that box, I decided to create a second more dressed up version of the card as well and added the Silver Satin Ribbon with the All is Calm Snowflake. Iridescent Ice really does fancy up a card all by itself so the simpler version really is striking even without the extras.
Onto the next question:
Question #3) Why do I create what I do?
There are many reasons for this one! I’ve always loved to create.. I remember creating a cardboard box pool table when I was a kid and can still picture the detail that I put into that little creation from the green felt right down to the cue and the parts underneath that the balls dropped into so that I could collect them to play again. Perhaps it’s in my nature, even in the sharing it with others.. I remember creating kleenex ghosts in my elementary school days and taking them to give to my neighbors (or sell at the neighbor’s garage sale) before Halloween! I love that crafting gives myself and others a chance to share a hobby & share time with each other building relationships and friendships. Crafting provides an outlet that we can use to not only take time away from the stresses or worries of our every day lives but it is also an outlet that gives us an opportunity to create meaningful gifts and keepsakes that we can share with others or pass on from one generation to another. I love when the recipient of a gift or a card I’ve made smiles from ear to ear (or even sheds a tear) as they pour over the details of the project knowing that every ounce of energy and love was spent entirely on them. .. and when I’m lucky enough to be the recipient, I know that it’s a gift that can never be replaced, these are some of my most treasured possessions.. the ones that have been created out of love that someone else feels. One of the most rewarding aspects of doing what I do is that in sharing it with others, I get to witness how accomplished they feel! Whether it’s the smaller canvas of a card or an entire album, or whether it’s a brand new stamper or an experienced stamper here in my studio or at Ronald McDonald House, seeing the joy on the face of a stamper when they have achieved success in creating a project is pure happiness! My stamping business has become a family affair for us here in my home and while I’m blessed to experience so many benefits of doing what I do, I’m even more blessed that my family gets to share it with me. Thanks Christine for giving me a chance to put this all here in writing and to acknowledge what I’m grateful for. Basically it all comes back to the Stampin’ Up! Statement of the Heart, ‘to do what we love and share what we love, as we help others enjoy creativity and worthwhile accomplishments … in this we make a difference’. This is the kind of statement that I hope we can all relate to (whether we make a difference for others, someone makes a difference for us or both) and that we can all aspire to no matter what type of job or way of living we have.
Question #4) How does my creative process work?
This one entirely depends on the moment and the circumstances.. am I preparing for a multitude of projects at once, am I working ahead or on a time crunch. ….whichever it is, I’d say that I probably work best under pressure .. that’s not entirely good though is it?! Honestly the process varies from one project to the next, sometimes it’s all in my head and goes straight to paper quickly and easily while other times it doesn’t turn out at all like I planned (sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worst). Sometimes, I sketch out a project and hope the process works out like my plan. Sometimes I just grab co-ordinating products (thank you SU for co-ordinating our products so well taking the guess work out of it for me!) and play and see what happens. Other times, there’s a pile of left over supplies on my table and they are just sitting there like they belong together, begging to turned into something pretty or cute! And of course other times, I turn to the many sources of inspiration and talent in my demonstrator friends on their blogs, on Facebook, on Pinterest and through SU sources like Stampin’ Success. All this to say, it’s always different based on need, time and whether I’ve got my own ideas cooked up, am lacking my own inspiration or want to cross something off my mile long, ‘I want to case this’ list! My creations are a pretty good compilation/balance of my own designs, being inspired by and casing others! I hope to pay it forward here and that you find inspiration here on my blog whether you case it just as it is or make it your own. I’m all for making your creative process a little easier and more enjoyable and less like work than it needs to be. Happy Stamping & thanks to all of you who make my process easier at times!
Now, I hope I haven’t bored you to no end with all of this chatter and that you stuck around to see the next project! This next one was a card I made with my workshop guests this past weekend and also at a stamp a stack last week. It’ll be coming up in a future stamp a stack as well. This one is definitely in the clean and simple (ish) category and I’m happy with how it turned out. I don’t often do a one layer card so when it turns out AND I get to make it with others, I feel like I’ve had success in sharing something others can do too! I’ll admit, my projects aren’t always very case-able and often the best projects are the ones that others can easily achieve success in creating as well! I hope this one inspires you to make it too!
I hope you enjoyed this getting to know me challenge! Now, before you go, please stick with me to see who I nominated and why I chose them.
Before I get into the specifics of my two nominees, I’m going to share how I narrowed it down to just two stampers from the long, long list of stampers who inspire me! I was having a terrible time with coming up with a way to narrow down my long list to just two people (I was on a team of amazing stampers last year and I’d truly love to nominate every single one of them and many others) so I went with a simple and single rule of criteria, who were the last two people who’s work I cased for a class? I love it when my work makes someone’s elses job easier and I’m all for not re-inventing the wheel for every single class and event. While I do design plenty of projects for my classes, there are so many projects out there that I’d love to case but unless it’s for a class, I just don’t get the time to re-create the beautiful designs of others for myself amidst daily life and doing my own designing for classes etc. so casing is one way I attempt to keep things achievable and duplicatable. I always share with my customers and downline when I’ve cased a project that we’re making and who the designer was. I think most of us are more likely to break out our stamps and use them when we know that we can achieve success and if starting with a springboard of inspiration helps them to feel like they don’t have to re-invent the wheel every time they create something yields that success I hope to inspire them with my creations, the creations I’ve cased and an example of giving credit to others for their designs. When I case, sometimes it’s a complete case and sometimes I switch it up a bit. Last week, I cased one of my nominees for Scrapbook club and I did an almost complete case of the other for a framed art class. .. now here’s my way of playing along with the challenge and giving these two stampers credit for their inspiration.
The Nominees (whom I’m excited to present to you) are:
1. Erica Cerwin of Pink Buckaroo Designs. Erica and I served on the Artisan Design Team for Stampin’ Up! together last year. Erica is a two-time ADT member and was a finalist in years before that. Long before she was a finalist I loved her work and have always been inspired by her amazing talent and creative genius. I swear she’s an architect of paper! The stuff she comes up with never ceases to amaze me, whether it’s an unbelievable 3D creation, a cute tag, an out of this World creative card or a gorgeous scrapbook page.. this girl creates it all to perfection! The stuff she comes up with is beautiful, colorful and while her creations always look so professional, she has a knack for coming up with projects that encourage others to give it a try. Sometimes, coming up with something that is equally beautiful and duplicatable to all levels of stampers is a hard task to accomplish and Erica has this mastered! Thank you Erica for being an unending source of inspiration and for sharing your talent with others! I wish you success in achieving your stamping and business goals and look forward to seeing you realize them! Be sure to go see what the fuss is all about.. even though I’m sure you’re plenty familiar with who Erica is!
2. Kirsteen Gill of Creatin’ with Kirsteen. I have actually never met Kirsteen and have only chatted with her a couple of times on Facebook. She has generously shared her projects there and has an unbelievable talent for creating gorgeous framed art pieces among many other projects. It’s been awhile since I made or offered any framed art pieces in a class. When Kirsteen shared her Fall Framed Art Sampler, I knew it would be a hit and asked her if she’d mind me sharing it with my stampers as a class. She graciously told me how she achieved the beautifully stamped wreath on her sampler and answered questions when I got down to making it myself! She’s got more beautiful framed art samplers and plenty of other gorgeous creations as well!
Be sure to hop along to Erica’s and Kirsteen’s blogs to see their work! I know you’ll be inspired and I hope that they’ll accept my challenge! Thanks again Christine for nominating me.. you were worried about your post being wordy.. I bet you’re not surprised though that mine is word(ier)!