Home Companion to publish again?

I’ve missed Mary Engelbreit’s Home Companion magazine since it ceased publication three years ago. It’s still hard for me to believe its been gone that long, seems like almost yesterday when I received that sad email from my editor telling me the publication was closing shop.

I’ve said this before many times, but I’ve been a adoring fan of this publication long before I ever had a small piece in it. I absolutely adored producing and writing the Paper, Scissors, Crop column in Home Companion each issue. It was a truly thrill to ask fabulous mixed-media artists to create unique artwork that fit like a glove with the magazine’s home decor and artistic style. I loved featuring so many of the top artists in our field, and was grateful to Barbara Elliot Martin and Mary Engelbreit for giving me the chance to learn and grow as an artist myself through that experience. Personally, my work and career has come a long way in the last 3 years and I know what I learned from Home Companion is a part of that.

My heart skipped a beat the other day when I was on Twitter and I saw a retweet from another fan referencing Mary’s blog. She wrote a post recently asking fans to declare their support for the magazine’s return by committing to a subscription (or two or three). I’m SO there. If Mary and Barbara and Kathy manage to get a publisher to commit, then I plan to buy subscriptions for at least a half-dozen friends and family.

Now, here’s the deal. They need a “gajillion” people to post comments about how much they miss Home Companion. If you love this magazine and want to see its return, hop on over and read Mary’s blog post on it right now and leave a resounding YES! for all to see.

New ICE Resin Creative Team

Announcement day has arrived for the new ICE Resin Creative Team. Because we received so many amazing applications we needed a little extra time to sort through everything and ensure we had seen and absorbed all the creativity shared with Kristen, Susan and myself. Truly, we cannot thank all the applicants enough for sharing a piece of themselves with us in this process. It’s our hope all of those who were not chosen will continue to not only create with ICE Resin but share photos with us via our Flickr Pool so we can share designs on the company blog with Flickr Fridays.

Here are the amazing designers we’ve chosen for the 2011- 2012 ICE Resin Creative Team.

Lesley Fisher & Michael Putnam

Cat Kerr

Joanna Pierotti

Andrea Ring

Tina Schiefer

Take a peek at their blogs and watch for many new and amazing creations from this group of talented individuals. Also be sure to check out Creative Team Wednesdays on the ICE Queen eZine for more information about the Designers in the coming weeks, as well as Tech Tuesdays where they’ll be sharing their expertise with helpful techniques, tips and tricks.

CKU and You

Oh my, I looked at my calendar today and realized the CKU Reunion event is right around the corner. My son started asking about Halloween and I thought to myself, gulp! I better get the kid’s costumes together before my usual scrambling because I’ll be spending time in the lovely Hyatt Regency La Jolla in one of my favorite places, San Diego, California from Oct. 27-29th.

I’m so looking forward to teaching this event with my dear friend and fellow ICE Resin expert, Kristen Robinson. I’m jazzed that we both published resin books this year and are teaching classes using the techniques. That’s precisely what we’ll be doing at the CKU (Creating Keepsakes University) event next month with nearly 400 scrapbookers gathering together to share their love of family, friends and creativity.

We’ll be spreading the word that one of the best things about resin jewelry is how easily and simply you can customize it. Those wonderful photos of your children make sweet charm bracelets or necklaces for grandmas and aunts. In addition to pictures, I love using my paper scraps to make resin jewelry. As a mixed-media artist, I have a bit of a hording problem when it comes to all those lovely little snips of patterned paper that wind up on my desk after making a paper-based project. I scoop them up and save them in plastic baggies for collage bits when creating my resin bezels.

If you haven’t had a chance to look at the CKU Reunion event website yet, please take a peek. I’m getting really excited when I think of the community scrapbooking spirit that’s waiting for me just a little over a month away. I hope you’ll be able to join us.

Here are the details:

CKU Reunion

October 27-29, 2011 at the Hyatt Regency La Jolla in San Diego, CA.

Cost is $295 (does not include hotel room or food)

Includes: album track, four 90 minute classes, evening activities, goodies, prizes, and more

Register online at www.creatingkeepsakes.com/cku

I {heart} Saturdays – Clever Logo

Just a quick one this Saturday, as it’s a busy family weekend to celebrate my son’s birthday. I thought I’d show a company logo that inspires me.

What do I like about this image? Humor, color, the leaf cleverly acting as an upturned mouth, and great marketing where the product and it’s brand shines through like the sun slicing brightly through the clouds on an overcast day.

I have no idea what this bakery actually sells, but I can tell you after seeing this company logo, I’m ready to buy one of everything. This isn’t just about eating a sweet treat, it’s about engaging all the senses along with a wallop of humor to boot.

Again, I found this on fab.com in the inspiration section.

Here’s wishing you a truly Artful Saturday!

A Jewelry Affaire Autumn 2011

I received my copy of the Autumn 2011 Jewelry Affaire and I am impressed by another beautiful issue. The cover is an unexpected kelly green-and-champagne white color combination that I think works well and doesn’t scream the typical Fall publishing colors.

Though I’m not an editor of the magazines I freelance for, I just can’t help wearing that hat in my mind’s eye when I see the published issues. I’m forever saying nice things about Stampington’s magazines, but it’s because I believe the quality of the photography and layout is really quite outstanding.

When I opened Jewelry Affaire to read Editor Beth Livesay’s column, I was surprised to see my name jump out as the first two words on the page. It was sweet she mentioned my visit to the Stampington offices in the Spring to do some video filming for ICE Resin.


The story of my mother’s vintage purple brooch that I re-purposed into a necklace is also featured on page 121 in this issue. I really like how the eggplant stone and the matching silk sari pops off the page. I have a treasure trove of vintage rhinestone pins from my mother that I’ll be working with in the future. Some hold such special childhood memories for me that I’m wondering how easy it will be for me to disassemble.

There are some amazing designs in this issue that should inspire you to pick up your jewelry pliers and get to work creating your own beautiful adornment. The issue is available on newsstands October 1, so keep an eye out for it next trip to your bookstore.

Here’s wishing you a truly Artful day!

I {heart} Saturdays – Typography

I’m such a sucker for typography. I began collecting letters when I was working as an editor of a community newspaper and volunteering on the board of my local SPJ (Society of Professional Journalists) chapter wayyyyy back when. Each year, the organization held a national conference and Phoenix was chosen as the host city. Like most conventions, Saturday evening was the big fundraising dinner with a keynote speaker and a silent auction filled with all kinds of great newspaper memorabilia.

That year I bid on, and won, a giant brass letter T that was hanging outside the Chicago Sun Time’s building. After the newspaper was sold in the mid-90s, the new owners did some sprucing up and donated the beautiful old letters to the national SPJ organization for fundraising. My journalist friends at the time wondered why I bought the T when there was no one in our family with that intial, but I had my reason. It was the capital letter of the Times and the font is a gorgeous Old English script.

I still have the heavy T tucked away in a vintage steamer trunk of mine. I think it might be time to pull it out and find the perfect place to display it once again.

For now, here are some images of Topography that inspire me as an artist and writer. I hope they do the same for you. I found these images under the inspiration header on Fab.com

Here’s wishing you a truly Artful Saturday!

Happy thought for the day

I snapped this picture the other day when my sister and I were having a girl’s day out shopping and lunching in Sedona. We stopped for a Carmel Frappacino at Starbucks and spotted this cutie patootie partaking in his own little treat. Sure, it was water, but I couldn’t help putting myself in the puppy’s head with the thought of “Hey, this is great! Life is good. Frappacino and adoring fans. What’s not to love?”

As I wrote in my last post, life has felt a little overwhelming of late because of some family stuff. When the house got quiet this morning, I was looking though my iPhone for some inspirational photos to help me start my work day. I saw this little guy and thought, seriously, who can be sad around puppies and babies? I decided to write a quick note in my journal. Nothing fancy, just a random thought to get my head into a good space when I walked into my studio to tackle the deadlines ahead of me.

People think that when you are an artist that you’re constantly in a state of creativity. Sure, I have my fair share of ideas swirling through my brain, but sometimes life gets in the way, just like everyone else. It’s times like today when doing a quick 5 minute prompt in my journal helps me find my center and gives me just the space I need to get to work.

(As a side note, I never kept a visual journal because my drawing skills have not progressed much beyond grade school. I was intimidated by the amazing work of people like Teesha Moore. But then I took a doodling class from Dawn DeVris Sokol and she made me realize I used to love drawing and that whatever marks I make in the privacy of my own journal are mine, and mine alone. I consider myself a novice art journaler and I don’t have lots of extra time to work at it, but its been a fun new exercise for me.)

I wonder, what do you do when your feet are in the mud and you need to get your head back in the cloud so you can be creative?