The "yearbook" prompt led to the unearthing of one of my high school yearbooks, which led to a mix of nostalgia and cringing as I leafed through it, which led me to the decision to make copies of several pages, which then led to the most delightful part: cutting up pieces of my past and re-assembling them here. Friends forever! Best of luck in the future! Have a great summer! Remember me!
The "wood" prompt brought to mind the color scheme, and this week's mark-making/drawing/sketching theme led to some scribbling, cutting, pasting, and stitching. Fun card to create! I love the unevenness of hand-cut circles. Perfection is boring.
The prompt "palm" had me reaching for a black pen and creating a rough sketch of the lines on my left palm -- lines that I repeated and then shaded using black watercolor pencil.
The "tapestry" prompt brought to mind different colors and lots of stitching (sans loom, in this case). This was created entirely from items that I might have otherwise discarded -- old calendar pages, a ripped gift bag, painting scraps, and more. It's a trash-to-treasure tapestry.
To welcome the ICAD challenge into my day requires a little bit of bravery -- it means suspending judgment and reminding myself that, when scrutinizing a finished card and feeling unsure about whether I like it or not, the point is NOT likability. The point is the process. Today was one of those days. The prompt? Macaron. I have mixed feelings about the card, but the highlight of the process for me was combining different paints in analogous colors to create scrumptious clementine and melon hues. I discovered color combinations that I would love to use in future projects. No judgment -- just play!
Today's "Goggles" ICAD prompt was kind of a head-scratcher. My initial thoughts were pretty literal, and as I let my thoughts wander, what came to mind were the goggle-sporting Edgar and Alan Frog from The Lost Boys and Dr. Horrible. At that point, I figured that I would just have an off-prompt day, working with the week 2 theme of collage and found and painted papers from old books.
However, as I started rummaging through papers, a line from a discarded (repurposed!) textbook on debate caught my eye: "YOU CAN'T FORCE BELIEF." From there, a little association helped me to find my focus: goggles --> vision --> world view --> perspective. Many of the papers that I had been pulling and trimming had something to do with ways of seeing or with acquiring knowledge and filtering the world through that view; the papers dealt with geography, music, language, literature, politics, poetry, genetics, history, numbers, and time. I added a few lines of my own to the mix: "so many ways to see -- why insist upon just one?"
The prompt, "Tourist Map," led to lots of layers -- painted and trimmed coastlines, a map of Capri (from souvenir shop packaging), a piece of map-printed fabric, stickers from luggage, and more.
A few days of grappling with a cold virus set me back in ICAD, but it worked out, as I was able to tackle the "Leaf or Petal" and "Stencil" prompts on the same day, using the same leaf, a brayer, paint, and ink.
The day 2 prompt, "Peppermint," had me indulging in some good, old-fashioned cut-and-paste, assembling tiny pieces from my scrap bin (that is, the overflowing realm of chaos that is my desk) and covering them in a few layers of minty fresh paint. Though it was a bit on-the-nose, I included the word "peppermint," cut from a page torn out of a bartender's recipe book (it was for a drink called the "Girl Scout," using peppermint schnapps).
This card pays tribute to the giant magenta-colored bruise on my arm that I received as a result of a failed attempt to insert an IV. The prompt, "Magenta," was probably not intended to be prophetic, though it turned out to be just that.
The "Reflection" prompt found me creating painted "reflections." I added paint and ink to one side of an index card and then folded and pressed the card, opening it to reveal a symmetrical image. I repeated that about five times with new cards, and then trimmed the strips and layered them here.
For the list of daily prompts and more info about ICAD, check out Daisy Yellow Art.
Although I have yet to make it through the full two months of ICAD (the Index-Card-a-Day Creative Challenge) each summer, I always return for more. The point isn't the finishing -- it's the creating, setting aside a little time each day to make something. In fact, "something" may be a little too specific a term for it. ICAD is more about process and less about product.
Today is the first day of the challenge, and although the prompts are optional, today's prompt, "Mailbox," spoke to me, Jill of the Junk Mail Stacks. I took a scissors to some of the most meaningless mail imaginable and made it meaningful in my own way. The paint and stitching helped. Instead of unopened credit card offers ending up in the trash, they found their real purpose here.
I'm grateful to Tammy Garcia of Daisy Yellow Art for keeping the challenge going for these last nine (!) years. If you're interested in playing along, give it a try!
Aaaaaaand I'm done! This year's Calvinball is in the books, and I have ten layouts and 437 points to show for it, along with a sense of accomplishment and a scrapping space that I should probably just set on fire instead of even attempting to re-organize at this point.
I love this guy so much. He came to us at age three, a rescue, and transformed our lives with so much laughter. I so wish I could have those first three years, so that he would never have had to experience the feeling of being left by one's family. He was a casualty of divorce and a subsequent move, so we were told. Poor guy.
Linus is resilient, though. He is also a character, to put it mildly. He may seem composed in these photos, but he had actually plopped down in the grass to enjoy the last few rays of afternoon sunlight, and refused to budge until he was ready. The journaling sheds some light on a few more of his endearing and exasperating features.
One more layout to go before meeting my Calvinball goal!
We're down to the final two days of Calvinball, and I have two more layouts to complete before I reach my goal of ten. Fingers crossed that I get there!
It's been a thrill making pages for the fun of it, using only what I already have in my stash. I am at the point where I'm done with hoarding. Items I've been saving for years (and years) are finally working their way into my projects, and it feels good to actually find a purpose for them.
Can you tell that one of the Calvinball rules is to use 20+ of the same item on a layout? ;)
This just-for-fun page is based on a sketch from back in the day when I was on the October Afternoon design team. Looking at the the mounds of paper above, you might get a nice chuckle out of the fact that the original sketch post was entitled, "Simple Layers."
Actually, the layers here may look complicated, but assembling the page is a simple process when there's a sketch to guide the placement of the papers.
I don't use sketches often enough -- I really should. They leave lots of room for creativity but also lend some efficiency to the process. When I saw that a Calvinball point could be earned for using a sketch, this design came to mind immediately -- it's one of my favorite blueprints for a page that allows for lots of pretty papers and lots of layers, which you know I love!
You would think that living on an island where a sizable portion of the population spends at least one day a week at the beach, I would be inured to any anxiety associated with swimsuit shopping, but no -- it has been more than a few years since I purchased a swimsuit. This may seem to present a problem, but the solution has been a simple one: avoid the beach.
Recently, though, the recent warm weather and blue skies have been heralding many beach days to come, and so my daughter and I braved the racks of bikinis and tankinis and one-pieces this past week.
Shopping for swimsuits is so different from shopping for other clothing. If I see a pretty blouse or dress, I'll grab it and try it on. If it doesn't look good, oh, well, but most of the time, if it looks good on the rack, it tends to look okay when tried on. The size on the tag is generally accurate.
Swimsuits, on the other hand, are governed by a different set of rules. If I see a pretty pattern on a swimsuit, and think, I love it -- I don't just grab it and try it on. I have to stop to consider whether the person who designed it is a saint or a sadist. Someone who understands the female body would design a suit that embraces curves and bellies and post-baby breasts and cellulite and thinks, I can work with that -- I can make the person who wears this suit love the way she looks and feels in it, and she won't have to wax half her body in order to wear this in public. Sadly, those designers are few and far between. Most of them seem to believe that the female body retains the proportions of a fourteen year old when it is forty.
Anyway, swimsuit shopping: ugh.
Luckily, the feminist daughter that I raised accompanied me, and each time I laughed at myself in the dressing room mirror, she reminded me that the woman who raised her has spent much of her life claiming to be a feminist as well. She wouldn't let me get discouraged, or blame my own body for its failure to look good in a suit designed by said sadist mentioned above.
It was a painful process, but I finally found two swimsuits that looked great and made me feel great. Both are one-pieces, and one is even strapless -- what-whaaat?
What remains with me, though, aside from flashbacks to my body being squished and smooshed and flattened and distorted, is my daughter's confidence. She tried on just as many suits as I did, and went through the same process, but she never blamed her body for being what didn't work when she looked into that dressing room mirror. She knew that the flaw was not in her -- in fact, she didn't seem to see any flaw; she just chalked it up to suit X not being right for body Y, and moved on to the next one. I so admire that. I could really learn a thing or two from her.
This page has been waiting for the right moment, the right mindset, to come together. I printed this photo a few years ago, and I flip past it frequently when considering what to scrapbook next, but it's connected to one of those memories that bears a special weight. It's tethered to other memories, to questions unanswered, to a person I knew but in the sense of a child's knowing -- a knowledge gained from observations, filtered through the lens of innocence rather than experience.
Nine days into Calvinball, I have completed my second layout. I'm waaaay behind the others, but that's okay -- I"m a weekend scrapper, and the only way to keep Calvinball fun is to create when I'm not exhausted...and to create pages that I really want to make, like this one of our newest addition, Freya.
You KNOW there's no way I'd make a layout without journaling. You can't see it above, because it's tucked under the photo block. I really couldn't keep it short, and once I finished it, I realized it wasn't going to fit on the page easily, so I incorporated it as a hidden element.
Calvinball provides great motivation for using one's stash. There are items on this page that I've had for years, including the vintage "F" monogram from a Jenni Bowlin Mercantile kit, lace ribbon, KI Memories paper, and Love, Elsie buttons. I also finally found the perfect use for the Scraptastic Club patterned paper on which the entire layout is built. It reminds me of Freya's previous life and her search for a forever home.
All of our pets are rescues, and though there is always an adjustment period, there is never regret -- these sweet creatures just long so deeply for love, and the love they give in return is such a gift.
The first of my Calvinball layouts is done -- whew! I planned to make this a 30-minute project but then I had to add another layer...and another...
This is the first project I've created in nearly two months. It felt really good to create again -- so good, in fact, that I decided to just run with it without judgment. I used one of my favorite color schemes (green and yellow), included a current photo of myself, taken on March 1 (with my messy end-of-day hair and lighting-be-damned philosophy), and documented what March 1 found me doing.
I totally forgot a key element of the journaling, though there is a nod to it on the layout itself with the "civil defense emergency" card tucked behind the photo. March 1 was a siren-testing day, and for the first time in a long, long time, I heard it without feeling sick and anxious. I meant to mention that in the journaling: "TEACHING through the siren without flinching once."
As of day 2 of Calvinball, my point total is 14.5. My goal for this month is ten layouts. It's a bit ambitious, since I'm going from zero in two months to ten in one month, but spring break has my back. We shall see how it goes...if I accomplish half that, it's better than zero, right?
Thanks for stopping by today! Of course, for all I know, no one is reading this and I am typing into the void. In that case, thanks for stopping by, void!
Ready for another round of Calvinball? It begins on March 1 and runs through March 31, and is being hosted this year by ScrapHappy (via a Facebook group). I'm so happy to hear that this most sacred and silly tradition will continue.
If you'd like to join the fun, participation is totally free.
(If you have no idea what Calvinball is, just do a search -- see above -- for "Calvinball").
I'm still around -- just taking a break to tend to the business of life. Something had to give, but hopefully, soon enough, I'll feel creative again. For now, I'll leave you with some of the Hip Kit Club projects I should have shared weeks (and weeks) ago.