Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Arbor Day-Guardian of the Woodland-A Peek-A-Boo-Project

 Arbor Day is celebrated the last Friday in April. I have always loved the woodlands and spending time is forests. Some of my fondest memories are from these "thin places"  "Thin places are places of energy. A place where the veil between this world and the eternal world is thin/ A thin place is where one can walk in two world-the worlds are fused together, knitted loosely where the differences can be discerned or tightly where the two worlds become one. Thin places aren't Perceived with the five senses."

Once while visiting a college roommate on Vancouver Island in the Town of Chemainus I took a walk in these ancient trees-Western Red Cedar, Douglas Fir, Sitka Spruce, Grand Fir, Bigleaf Maple, and Garry Oak- and was transported to a time my grandfathers spoke of in Pennsylvanian when Lumber was King, and Williamsport was known as the "The Lumber Capital of the World" I have "green men blood" in my veins.

"Walks in Woods" is a name given to me to honor my love for nature and the hollers I frequented in my childhood from another longtime friend. It is with him that I have another thin place memory. The season is winter and we are in the woods near a relatives farm, where Oktoberfest is held in Autumn. The path is snow covered and we find our way to the campgrounds and gather fallen branches dragging them back to the fire-pit. We find some dry kindling left behind and begin to build a tepee of twigs and larger branches, till we have a totem ready to set ablaze. Once burning bright we stand under the pine boughs as snow gently falls upon our heated faces and melts as teardrop flowing down onto the frozen soil. We are still and quiet knowing we have come upon a sacred space. This memory has carried us through many darken days. My interpretation of the Green Man is the inspiration for this artwork as I honor the blessing of thin places.

1. Gather Supplies
2. Connect Two GSLC Tree 2 Together Forming a Mirror Image, Cutting off Most of the Trunks.
3. Stable these Two pieces Together Using a Stapler.
4. Begin by Randomly Painting Both Sides of Trees First with Americana Decor Deep Brown Creme Wax, Vallejo Russian Thick Mud-Brown Using a Thin Plastic Spatula.
5. Next Randomly Sprinkle with Nutmeg and Chili Powder.
6. On a Paper Plate Use a Dollop of Cosmic Shimmer Lava Paste. Adding Peat Moss Reinker, Vallejo Model Color-Green Brown and Flat Earth Paints to Tint the White Paste.
7. Use Small Plastic Spatula to Randomly Splatter the Lava Paste Mixture onto Tree Branches.
8. It Will Go On Wet but Grows When Cured With a Heat Tool.
9.Spray Everything With Cheap Hairspray Sealing It.
10. Paint GSLC Pine Shapes with Lumiere Green Metallic Paints, I used Olive Green, Pearlescent Emerald, and  Citrine.
11. Sprinkle With Green Embossing Powder I Used Leaf Green and Forest Foliage. Cure With a Heating Tool.
12. Use Green Acrylic Paint, I Used Green Gold, Phthalo Green (Blue Shade), Florescent, Chromium Oxide Green and Titan Pale Green to Paint and Layer GSLC Fern Fronds Without First Separating Them.
13. Sprinkle with Nutmeg and Chili Powder, Sealing with Cheap Hair Spray.
14. Once Fully Dry Take Apart Each Fern Frond.
15. Collect and Print Face Images with Green Eyes.
16. Use Portion of Face Images for Eyes, Nose and Mouth.
17. I Left GSLC Fanciful Elements in Their Original Form to Counterbalance the Greens and the Browns Featured in This Piece.
18. Assemble Green Man Image Layering and Adhering with Heavy Matte Gel Medium.
19. Press and Dry Completely Under Heavy Books.
20. Once Fully Dry Assemble Your 3-D Mixed Media Canvas- Ready for Any Wall Display.


Some Final Thoughts.

Two Books that are often used on Arbor Day in the Classroom Are The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein and  The Lorax by Dr. Seuss

“And after a long time the boy came back again.
"I am sorry, Boy," said the tree, "but I have nothing left to give you-
My apples are gone."
"My teeth are too weak for apples," said the boy.
"My branches are gone," said the tree.
"You cannot swing on them-"
"I am too old to swing on branches," said the boy.
"My trunk is gone," said the tree.
"You cannot climb-"
"I am too tired to climb," said the boy.
"I am sorry," sighed the tree.
"I wish that I could give you something... but I have nothing left. I am an old stump. I am sorry..."
"I don't need very much now," said the boy, "just a quiet place to sit and rest. I am very tired."
"Well," said the tree, straightening herself up as much as she could,
"well, an old stump is a good for sitting and resting. Come, Boy, sit down. Sit down and rest."
And the boy did.
And the tree was happy.” 
-Shel Silverstein

"I am the Lorax.

 I speak for the trees.

I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.

 And I'm asking you sir, at the top of my lungs - that thing!

That horrible thing that I see! What's that thing you've made out of my truffula tree?"

"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,

Nothing is going to get better. It's Not!"

“It's not about what it is, it's about what it can become.”

-Dr. Seuss

I would add to the list the musical "Into the Woods"

Little red riding hood
Into the woods,
It's time to go,
I hate to leave,
I have to, though.
Into the woods-
It's time, and so
I must begin my journey.

Into the woods
And down the dell,
The path is straight,
I know it well.
Into the woods,
And who can tell
What's waiting on the journey?

So into the woods
The time is now.
We have to live,
I don't care how.
Into the woods
To sell the cow,
You must begin the journey.
Straight to the woods
And don't delay-
We have to face
The marketplace.
Into the woods to journey's end-

Into the woods,
It's time to go,
It may be all
In vain, I know.
Into the woods-
But even so,
I h Into the woods
Without regret,
The choice is made,
The task is set.
Into the woods,
But not forget-
Ting why I'm on the journey.
Into the woods
To get my wish,
I don't care how,
The time is now.ave to take the journey.

Into the woods,
Without delay,
But careful no
To lose the way.
Into the woods,
Who knows what may
Be lurking on the journey?
Into the woods
To get the thing
That makes it worth
The journeying.
Into the woods-

Into the woods!
Into the woods!
Into the woods,
Then out of the woods,
And home before dark!

Supplies:  (2) Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts-Tree 2,Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts-Pine Tree Shape Set, Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts-Fern FrondsGypsy Soul Laser Cuts-Fanciful Elements, Scissors, Stapler, Americana Decor Deep Brown Creme Wax, Vallejo Russian Thick Mud-Brown, Thin Plastic Spatula,  Nutmeg, Chili Powder, Cosmic Shimmer Lava Paste, Paper Plate,  Peat Moss Reinker, Vallejo Model Color-Green Brown and Flat Earth, Lumiere Green Metallic Paints-Olive Green, Pearlescent Emerald, Citrine, Green Embossing Powder-Leaf Green, Forest Foliage, Green Acrylic Paint-Green Gold, Phthalo Green (Blue Shade), Florescent, Chromium Oxide Green, Titan Pale Green, Face Images with Green Eyes, Heavy Gel Matte Medium, Paintbrush, Heavy Books 

I cannot wait to see your interpretation of this project. Share it on the Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts Craft Group Page on Facebook. I would love to see what new creations you are working on!



Monday, April 26, 2021

How much is that . . .

doggie window?

If you're old like me, you remember that song

"How much is that doggie in the window".

I've changed the words a bit to show you 

this adorable shaker doggie bone,

a new addition to the

Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts.

There are 4 layers to this cut all together:
1 solid chipboard cut
2 layers of chipboard with center cut out
1 layer of chipboard with clear plastic

Take the solid chipboard cut and
adhere the 2 outlined chipboard cuts
to the top of the solid chipboard.
Make sure all of the glue is completely dry.

Then add the baubles inside the layered chip.
I used tiny beads (seed beads) and sequins.

Next carefully adhere the top clear plastic bone
to the layered bone.
After adding the top layer, I used clips
until the adhesive was completely dry.

And it's that easy!

I've got to keep these on hand for my

Coming soon to your favorite chipboard company 

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Art Journal Page - Think Like A Queen

Hello everyone!  Today I have the second art journal page I mentioned in the last post, which has been made by following the prompts in the journal cards I made in this post.  

This time, I will keep pulling cards till I feel like the page is finished. I will be drawing one card at a time and obeying it before moving on to the next card.  I shuffled my cards and then drew one prompt card as follows:  SPRAY

I'm not a fan of spraying so I wasn't so happy about drawing this card but I must obey the cards, so I used a Prima Color Bloom spray in Dark Tulip and added some water to make it spread around the page.

After drying with a hairdryer, I shuffled and drew a second card:  COLLAGE

I chose to use these gel printed backgrounds for my collage.

I used matte gel medium to stick everything down on my page.

The next prompt I drew was:  FOCAL POINT

This is something I prefer to add at the end, however, I am obeying the cards so I had to add it to my page now.  I had this image of Marie Antoinette on my desk and also this frame which I had previously painted gold, but the photo is the wrong shape for the frame so it was time to improvise.

I glued the image to the frame and then used the excess to fill in the gaps.

I used some Pitt artist pens to blend it all together and hide the joins in the paper a little bit.

Focal point added, it was time for another card, and this time I drew the COLOUR CARD.  This card has six options and I rolled a 5 which was BLUE.  I was a bit worried about adding blue to this page, but if the cards demand it...

I chose a Prussian Blue heavy body acrylic and painted it carefully around the sides of my page and other places, hoping that they didn't clash too much.

Time for the next prompt and it was another colour card:  BLACK OR WHITE

I chose WHITE and used Titanium White acrylic and a palette knife to apply it randomly over my page.

Once the white paint was dry, it was time to pull another card:  SOMETHING METALLIC

I already had something metallic on my page thanks to the gold frame, but that was not done specifically for this prompt so I decided to add more metallic to the page.  Firstly a Champagne metallic Gelato scribbled across the page on top of the white paint.  Then some gold ink splatters and finally some of the gold leaf collage pieces leftover from making the prompt cards themselves.

Time, for another prompt and this time it was:  MAKE SOME MARKS

I used black pencils to make my marks around the edge of the page and to draw around the gold leaf collage pieces..

No drying time required so time for the next prompt:  BOOK PAPER

I had these scrap squares of book paper on my desk and they were already painted blue, but a different shade of blue to what I used before, but I decided to use them anyway.  So I glued them together to make a larger journalling block and then wrote this quote by Oprah Winfrey in white pen:

Think like a queen.  A queen is not afraid to fail.  Failure is another steppingstone to greatness

So there we have it, after eight prompts, the page feels finished to me so I decided to stop pulling prompt cards and called it done.

Let me know what you think in the comments!

Till next time,

Empire of the Cat

Project Recipe:

Flourished Frame Elizabeth BB66A
In the gel prints: PE126ES Seaweed Circle *coming soon*, PE129ES Oceanic *coming soon*, Leafy Swirl C7G
my art journal, Prima color bloom spray dark tulip, collage materials, gel medium, photo, black pencil, heavy body acrylic, gold ink, PITT pens, gelatos, book paper, white pen, and of course, the journal prompt cards!