Friday, April 24, 2009

Has Everything Been Done Before?

Sometimes I wonder if there's a collective consciousness where stamp companies draw their next releases from. Last month it seemed like babies were everywhere, or at least I'd seen a bunch of simultaneous baby releases. I'm sure baby stamps are nothing new, but do you ever notice these things seem to happen in waves?

In January, I'd seen these pillows posted on a design blog and I asked Tracey if we could do a set of victorian furniture as a future release. Tracey loved the idea of giving the DF characters the chance to play house, especially since we'd just started experimenting with the background scenes. But then came Valentines, and Easter, and we'd talked about the people set since last year. Not long ago, I finally emailed Tracey the first few drawings I had lined up for the furniture set and we outlined all the other items that needed to be drawn. I was crushed when I saw the sneak peeks posted for another stamp company which included a victorian chair and some of the items we'd discussed.

I was almost thinking we were going to have to scrap this next set, because I'd hate to be labeled a copy-cat, but I think I just have to chalk this up to that mysterious wavelength in the 5th dimension that we're subconsciously swimming in. Also, I predict classic furniture is going to be the next big thing in stamping. What do you think?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Earth Day!


This is my favorite card from the batch I made this weekend and the one Michael liked the best, too. For some reason it photographed the worst, though, and I had a hard time getting the colors to look like they do in real life.

This is going to have to be my Earth Day card. I didn't make a earth-themed card, but the background paper comes from the DCWV Green Stack which is 70% recycled, and the other papers are scraps I had from other projects.

I thought I'd make a card welcoming "Heidi" to her new neighborhood.

I'd also like to give you a look at the back of this card so you can see the new personalized stamp I ordered a few weeks ago. A while back, I'd received a couple of awesome cards made by Kathy Daume. I just love this lady's work, and she had the cutest insignia on the back of her cards. I begged her to reveal her source, but she was on a cruise and couldn't get back to me before I stumbled upon a coupon in Martha Stewart's magazine for expressionery.com.


I'm happy with my expressionery stamp, but I really like the selection of designs available at Kathy's source too: www.sweetpapery.com. Speaking of Kathy, she's a finalist in the MFT Idol contest at SCS, and you NEED to check out her blog and help her win this contest, because her work is amazing and she deserves it. She's a StarvingArtistamps design team member, so you'll also see all of her fabulous DoodleFactory cards too!

Monday, April 20, 2009

It's Super!


I have a subscription to a design magazine, which means I'm on the target mailing list for everything from software to stock photography. Most ads get tossed in the trash, but the ones from print and paper companies are usually worth keeping. The Paper ads and mailers are always printed on premium stock with spot varnishes, fancy laser cuts and eye-catching imagery.

This super cute car paper came from a paper catalog I received in the mail last week, and as soon as I saw it, I knew it would be the perfect background for the SuperDad stamp. The image and colors couldn't have been more perfect and this paper even didn't cost me a cent.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Momma Said...Just Breathe...


Dear Neglected Blog,

I finally have something to post on you. My day job has been keeping me busy and for the past few weeks I've been feeling like the look on Crying Izzy's face. Yes, Momma warned there'd be days like this, but she didn't say there'd be entire months like this!

I won't complain too much because I am grateful to not only have a job, but to have one I really enjoy (not that I still can't feel overworked or stressed out).

The other day a memory surfaced from my high school english class. We'd turned in book reports the day prior and our teacher decided to read the opening paragraph of my essay out loud to the entire class. Before she began, she said: I'm reading you this piece not because it is the best, or even the most well-written, but because it is obvious how much this person enjoyed and appreciated the book. It was all true. I don't even remember the book, but I remember loving it more than I expected. My teacher's comment stuck with me all these years, partially because it was a bit of a back-handed compliment, but mostly because the underlying message was that if you do anything with genuine interest or love, then people will notice (even if you're not the best).

I feel that way a lot with my day job. I don't consider myself an exceptional designer, yet I get a lot of praise and compliments at work. Over time, my skills have and will continue to improve, but I think people like my work because I enjoy what I do and I always try to give the most that I can. The same can probably be said for the DoodleFactory.

The irony is that the more people notice, the more they want, which leads to feeling overwhelmed and no longer enjoying what I do. I need to get better at setting boundaries and developing enough space to keep everything in balance. This weekend I had plans to work on an extra project I've been assigned at work, but I gave myself a break instead.

I spent most of Saturday doing nothing on my list of things "to do", then decided that I really wanted to make things that didn't involve a computer or deadline or any rules. I never expected to become a "stamper", but I really enjoy the various supplies and processes involved. It also doesn't hurt that I now have a killer supply of papers, ribbons and flowers thanks to Tracey and a few of my stamping friends I've met since starting this hobby.



I made a handful of cards, but I'll leave the rest to share another day since this one says it all, for now.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Colorful Characters


Just had time to stamp and color some of the new images from the "Oh, Baby" set tonight. I think "Heidi" kind of looks like the actress from Will & Grace with auburn hair, but she looks totally different with darker hair and a more olive complexion. Can't wait to see how everyone else starts coloring these.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Oh Baby, It's Here!


Here's the other card I made this weekend using Yoop from the DoodleFactory Easter set. If you have any questions about papers or accessories just let me know because I'm going to move right on to the next thing...

...At long last, HERE is the latest DoodleFactory release all racked up and ready to go at StarvingArtistamps.com

Welcome to our new little neighborhood:



Here you'll find our new Mama Heidi and her cute baby Izzy:


And what town would be complete without a SuperHero or two to overlook the land. We've got a SuperMom and SuperDad ready to care for crying babies and towering piles of laundry. (hmmm...do I need to make a stamp of that?)


There you have it. I hope this release was worth the wait. As always, you can try to win these stamps for free (there are even a bunch of sentiments in the batch!) Check out the company blog for details. If you want to buy them now, remember you can get 10% off by typing in savetenDF when you check out at StarvingArtistamps.com

Sunday, April 05, 2009

April Flowers

I apologize to anyone who's been waiting with bated breath for the release of the next set, especially since this entry isn't going to be a reveal. I can say the new stamps are completely rubberized and if you were in Allentown, PA for the Paper Arts Fair this weekend, you would have been one of the first to see them at the StarvingArtistamps booth. Tracey has been swamped with Show Season travel and prep, so you'll have to wait just a tiny bit longer until she can load them into the shop. The good news is, the next release is VERY close and once they're up, they'll be ready to ship immediately.

Onto something I CAN show you. I've had an insanely busy week at work, so it was nice to just sit and stamp on Saturday. It's been weeks since I've made a card and at first I just stared blankly at my supplies. I tried to look for a sketch to follow, but even that seemed overwhelming. Finally I decided to stamp "Bluebelle" from the Easter set since I've never used her before. The picture is a little fuzzy since my camera is out of commission and I had to use my scanner instead.

I guess I was feeling a bit Springy, because the next card I made featured more flowers (from the Valentines Remix set).



While I was working on these cards, I took advantage of the "Watch Instantly" feature on Netflix and was pleased to discover a follow-up to one of my favorite cancelled shows, "Dead Like Me". It was like a supersized episode five years after the end of the series. Enjoyable because it was unexpected and wrapped up some loose ends, but a bummer because of an unfortunate casting replacement and because the series is still cancelled. After that, I watched "Enchanted", and several episodes of a british tv sitcom, "The IT crowd". I also caught up on the Dollhouse series on hulu.com. That's about 8 straight hours of internet movies and tv. Yes, I am a very slow card-maker.

I know a lot of my friends already know about this one, but if you haven't already entered for your chance to win 72 COPIC MARKERS, head over to charmedcrafts.blogspot.com and throw your name in the basket!