Archive for the ‘illustrations’ Category

Create Your Own Watercolor Photo Bookmarks

I discovered the design for these bookmarks by accident one day while sorting through old photos where I had cut someone out of a garden scene and thought, “Hmm, if only there were some way to USE all these fragments of old photos…” Then I came across some ‘Make Your Own Bookmark’ kits at Michaels Craft Store (Heaven) and one plus one made two. Instead of using the kit I bought it, took it apart and used their bookmark as a stencil to make my own- now you can do it too! These watercolor photo bookmarks are a lot of fun to design and make a wonderful personalized gift ๐Ÿ™‚

What you will need:

watercolor paints and painting supplies (brushes, containers, etc)

bristol paper or watercolor paper

pencil

photos

x-acto knife

ruler

scissors

ribbon

hole puncher

glue

1. Make your bookmark stencil ( use a heavy paper or cardboard to lengthen stencil life):

The measurements for this stencil are 12 inches by 1.5 inches, with two triangle notches at 6inches where the bookmark will be folded. The window for the photo is 4 inches from the bottom, with .25 inches on both sides and 1.5 inches on top where a hole will be punched for ribbon.

2. Trace your stencil on the back of bristol or watercolor paper you wish to paint on- make sure you trace them close together to not waste paper ๐Ÿ™‚

3. Get ready to paint! I choose watercolors for these bookmarks because the colors are so vibrant and it is a lot of fun to experiment with textures. Try using different techniques like wetting the paper a little before applying paint to make more blended look, or splattering a different color over wet paint to create a tie-dye effect. Go crazy! Have fun!

4. When paint is dry cut out bookmark strips following the lines you traced before painting.

5. Use an x-acto knife to cut out windows for photos and fold bookmarks in half at 6 inch line

6. Now it is time to select your photos!I lean toward nature photos, but faces would be lovely as well ๐Ÿ™‚

Photo measurements are 3.5 cm by 5 cm

7. To attach photos into bookmarks put a small amount of glue around the edge of the photo square and center it in the photo window. When photo is dry fold bookmark in half and glue insides together. I usually press the bookmarks under a stack of books while they dry to keep them nice and flat

8. When your beautiful bookmarks are dry you can use a hole puncher to punch a hole above the photo window and tie a little ribbon on for a finishing touch.

Grab your favorite book and keep your pages in style! ๐Ÿ™‚

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It’s never too late to get back to what you love

After graduating from Art School with a BFA in Fashion Design I took a yearย  or so off from making art. 4 long years of being told what to create and when too create it, going through not-so-constructive ‘constructive criticisms’ and realizing that a job in the Fashion world = years of self hatred, eating disorders and depression lead me to try another path.

I was hired in a Preschool as a TA shortly after this realization and re-discovered my passion to teach. I went back to school for Early Childhood Education and now teach full-time in a great little school in Western Mass. Finally, five years later,ย  I have found the happy medium- teach all day&craft all night- i’m finally able to balance my two biggest loves in a way that works. It’s never too late to get back into something you love, never.

Here are some of my early pieces:

(please forgive my not-so-amazing photo quality)

‘Octopus’s Garden’ was one of the first illustrations after my ‘hiatus’

“‘The only reason to ever look back is to count the flock that now follows you.”

“Sing louder still from within the cage, Your voice is the key that will always set you free.”

“Transform” gift for my sister ๐Ÿ™‚

“Full House”

Whooo doesn’t love some owls, seriously?

“Charging rhinos couldn’t keep me from you”ย  was the last piece I drew before leaving my home of 8 years in San Francisco and moving backย  to Western Mass.

Looking back now I guess it is kind of a metaphor for my travels, or it could be just another artistic outlet. Either way, it is great to be back in the art. One thing I have learned: Don’t let charging rhinos- or asshole bosses, or non-supportive peers, or past relationships, or yourself, or anyone- keep you away from what you love to do.