Sunday, August 29, 2021

Turtles

                                                          Photo by Wexor Tmg on Unsplash
 
The Art Elements monthly challenge theme for August is the turtle.  I think of the turtle as my spirit animal.  Turtles are thought of as easygoing, patient, and wise creatures. Due to their long lifespan, slow movement, sturdiness, and wrinkled appearance, they are associated with longevity. I consider myself slow but steady in how I approach things.  Having a degree from the University of Maryland, their mascot the terrapin has a fond spot in my heart. Plus, I am certainly old and wrinkled no
w!

                                                   Photo by Kris Mikael Krister on Unsplash

Turtles have regularly been incorporated into art and literature over time.  I like to use turtles in my handmade art jewelry and cards as well.  This challenge motivated me to create this handmade card.  I love to look for turtles in the clear waters of the Florida Keys when I am lucky to be there.  I incorporated a reef into this card to capture those memories.

                                                       Green turtle card by BayMoonDesign

I am always on the lookout for turtle beads to incorporate into my jewelry. The turtle is the focus of this handmade bracelet.  I included a unique yellow lampwork seashell and sand bead, sand dollar charm, and aqua blue Czech glass beads. This boho blue bracelet is held together with natural color Irish waxed lined and natural brass lobster clasp and natural brass starfish charm that has had a patina applied.  


This green turtle bracelet features a unique handmade polymer clay turtle by Brooke Brock. This bracelet also has pretty green lamp work beads by Susan Kennedy. It is held together by a black lobster clasp. I used annealed steel wire which was treated to bring out the black in the turtle. 

                                                    Green Turtle Bracelet by BayMoonDesign

Throughout the month of August projects can be posted on Instagram using the hashtag #aethemechallenge or #aeturtles and tag it with @art__elements (2 underscores between art and elements) and they will repost your images. You can also post it to the Art Elements Community Facebook page. I hope you have fun with this challenge!

                                        
                                                         Photo by Scott Stefan on Unsplash


Sunday, July 25, 2021

Upcycle


                                                        Photo by Jen Theodore on Unsplash

July's Art Elements theme is Upcycle.  Upcycle can mean junkyard art, recycle, repurpose etc.  In the end, you need to give something new life. To join this challenge all you need do is create something using repurposed items. it can be a beautiful piece of art, a useful practical item or something that combines both. 

I decided to start with a special piece of tin that have had for awhile.  The small circular tin has a Scottish terrier on it.  Having spent much of my childhood with a Scottish born grandfather and a Scottish terrier as a pet, I knew right away that I would make something with it.  


I knew that I wanted to enlarge the appearance of the tin and add some weight to it to turn it in to a pendant. I decided to back the area with red plaid faux leather which I had eft from a previous project. I used a circular die and Sizzix machine that I use for making my handmade cards. I cut out a larger circle than the tin and used it to layer under the tin.


I love how the red plaid brings out the red on the dog's bow tie. Red is the color that I decided to add where possible. With black as the other dominant color in the necklace, I wanted to brighten it up.



To increase the size of the pendent and add more red, I placed the circular piece of red plaid faux leather under the circular dog tin.  I lined up the plaid circle with the hole in the tin and punched through the leather to create a hole that is large enough to put a 12 inch piece of black annealed wire through.  I made a simple loop and left a 8 inch tail of wire to stack a red bead.  I created another simple loop with the wire.  I made sure to keep a tail long enough to loop over the black sea glass.  On the other end of the sea glass I threaded 3mm wide soft deer leather.  I was able to find a black bead that had a hole large enough to run 2 pieces of the leather through. 


  

Next, I tied an overhand knot to keep these pieces in place.  I added a small lobster clasp at the ends.  Actually the necklace is large enough to slip over your head.  For some extra flare I added a piece of same black leather above the red bead and tied a knot on each end of the cord.

                                                 Scottish Terrier Necklace by BayMoonDesign

I am very happy with the necklace.  It has a handsome pendant and a soft comfortable leather strap.
It is available in my online BayMoonDesign shop.  


Sunday, June 27, 2021

Art Elements:: Lizards


                                                         Photo by Jelle de Gier on Unsplash

I hope these images inspire you! For this month's theme we are free to use any kind of lizard! Use any medium you feel inspired to showcase these sun loving characters. You can post your project on Instagram using the hashtag #aethemechallenge or #aeLizard and tag it with @art__elements (2 underscores between art and elements) and we will repost your images. You can also post it to the Art Elements Community Facebook page.

                                                       Photo by Vengadesh Sago on Unsplash

I have a lizard necklace in my BayMoonDesign store. The lizard was created by Brooke Bock and I love how the chain goes so well with it. Since I made the necklace awhile ago, I thought I should make something new for this challenge. 

                                                       Lizard Necklace by BayMoonDesign

This would be a good time to expand my stamp collection. I have always admired the gecko so I sought to find a gecko stamp. I usually use rubber stamps, but I found a wood carved gecko that I loved.

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Gecko Card by BayMoonDesign

To make this handmade note card, I used high quality white card stock to stamp the gecko on. I applied a water based brown ink with a brayer to the carved wood stamp and stamped the image onto the card stock. Since this type of paper hasn't much give, I created a cushioned area out of recycled plastic mailing envelopes. After the stamped image dried, I cut it out. I love the fact that when the image is cut out, it stays in a circular pattern and can be elevated with dimensional foam. It gives the gecko a slight 3 dimensional effect. I selected some bright yellow and orange printed paper and layered it on orange card stock. I added some yellow ribbon to give the card some additional pop of color.

                                                         Gecko Blank Note Card by BayMoonDesign

For the next gecko card, I used the same process but the orange and yellow paper that I made by my using my jelli plate. I wanted to create some desert colors.


                                                 Photo by Wolfgang Hasselmann on Unsplash

Find a lizard that inspires you!  

Monday, May 31, 2021

Dandelion


The May Art Elements theme is the Dandelion. We can use any medium that we feel inspires us to showcase the dandelion. Projects can be posted on Instagram using the hashtag #aethemechallenge or #aeDandelion and tag it with @art__elements (2 underscores between art and elements) and we will repost your images. You can also post it to the Art Elements Community Facebook page.

This theme really made me happy because it reminded me of how much I enjoyed blowing on dandelions when they were white and had gone to seed when I was a child.  I  loved watching the seeds drift off in the air.  With that in mind I started to notice all of the dandelions around me on my walks. 


I thought that this would be the perfect time to introduce my 15 month grandson to the tradition of wishing when you blow on a dandelion.  His newly developed walking skills enable him to follow me outside to a dandelion and watch me blow on it. I repeated this a number of times and then he picked a dandelion by the stem and waved it around with excitement.  He isn't able to blow on it with enough force to  to send the seeds flying off but he enjoys the wandering around and picking them up with me doing the blowing.  I smiled inside when I heard a report that he had picked all of the dandelions around his house over the course of the week.

With dandelions in mind,  I set out to make a few birthday cards.  One for a friend's birthday and the others for my BayMoonDesign gift shop.


                                              Make a Wish Birthday Card by BayMoonDesign

                                                Inside of the birthday card by BayMoonDesign

I used white craft ink on the card to get an extra thick image. I also used a trick that I read about to color the rhinestone that I glued to these cards. I applied ink to the rhinestones that matched the paper. The ink stayed on the stones perfectly and added some glitz.

                          

I love this bright yellow paper and I used it to line an envelope for a card that is in my BayMoonDesign store.


                                                Inside of  birthday card by BayMoonDesign

I made a second card in a different color palette just to see which one I liked the best. The first card has earthy colors and the second has bright spring colors. I like them both!


                                                            Dandelions by BayMoonDesign

For my third card (photo above)  I set about selecting a Dandelion metal cutting die that would enable me to cut out the image of a dandelion as well as emboss the image of a dandelion onto paper. To emboss I used my Big Shot and created these layers to emboss the dandelions.

Step 1
Placement of the platform and die to emboss with the Big Shot:

Platform
Clear plate
Silicone craft sheet
Cardstock, facing up
Detailed die, cutting edge face down onto the cardstock)
A piece of copy paper
Clear plate
Two pieces of cardstock for shim

Top and bottom plates or shims may vary depending on your machine, but the technique will work with proper pressure if the layers are in order.
  1. I watched a number of videos on the technique of embossing with metal dies and experimented with the technique a number of times before I got the results that I was looking for.  It was worth the trials because I love the result.

  2. Dandelions give me joy!
  3.