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I  manage the web page the Willington Historical Society in eastern Connecticut which is where I lived up until 17 months ago. The website was a school project and is built in Dreamweaver but I will be switching it over to wordpress eventually. I also do occasional design work for them and recently they decided to update the banner for their newsletter The Hourglass.  It was definitely time. I beleive the original was drawn in the late 60’s early 70’s at the time of the founding of the historical society. I had been urging them for years to update it but ….they move slow.Screen Shot 2015-09-28 at 3.32.05 PM


So imagine my surprise when they approached me last month finally ready to commit to change. Yes, even historical societies need to update on occasion. There is a difference between historic and archaic.  Anyhow I have no idea what the name Hourglass has to do with the towngreen and in addition they have no idea where the name Hourglass came from in the first place. Lost in the sands of time I suppose ( see what I did there?? sands….hourglass…)  Anyhow they wanted to keep the towngreen but upgrade it. I struggled with the view from the original. Its quaint and cute but it feels awkward to me and it was a P.I.T.A. to try and recreate. So  scrapped it and came up with this:



Which is in fact very cute. I learned how to do shadows and everything! However it was a bit busy for the Historians. I am not sure they truly appreciated my bushes, flowerboxes and shadows. So I retrenched and gave them a more classic….less colorful design.


Needless to say this one was a hit and will be their new banner. And frankly….I like it better too. Clean and simple. What was I thinking adding in flowerboxs and shadows????

Published: November 16, 2015


Digital Version

I sent out a thank you card recently to a woman who is a yoga teacher and whom I have known for sometime. She had generously shared a copy of a sketch she had drawn and mailed it to me. I wish I could say we were dear friends but it just never happened. She is however someone I admire greatly and support as I can. She is deeply real about her journey and her life and that is something I aspire to as well.

Originally I had planned on doing a digital version and printing the flattened result. I wanted to take advantage of all the digital scrap papers I have. And it would have been very pretty I dare say.

But in the end my love of texture won out and I made the card more dimensional.  I had the “Scan and Cut” cut out the lotus outline and I glued in some handmade papers behind it. It came out beautifully and all I can say is that I hope she likes purple!



Side view




When I look at the finished versions of my cards I am always kind of amazed that I made them. My inner child is like; “WOW! I made that! I mean seriously…I really MADE that.”  I am not sure why I am so amazed at that. Maybe it is acknowledgement of skill or ability which is a big step for me. I tend to downplay any innate ability I have. I chalk things up to luck or coincidence. I am not claiming my work is classic and timeless just that I am acknowledging I can be creative. its not something that comes easily.

Published: November 6, 2015

i “heart” u

3D Card inspiration

3D Card inspiration

Long distance relationships suck and  they are especially hard when you and your kid are far away from each other and one is having a rough time. Mine is all grown up but believe me the old saying that no matter how old the kid they are always your kid is true. I love her and worry about her and most likely spout far too much advice. ( Actually I do advise too much…working on that) Anyhow I know she has been struggling lately and I needed to send her some stuff so I thought I would make her a card. The inspiration from this one came from everyones favorite visual site; Pinterest. I have been interested in paper cutting since last fall but frankly its more than a bit intimidating trying to think 3D. But this one seemed easy enough and after a couple of rough drafts I succeeded in a decent version.

For my background I scanned one of my smush pages (smush pages are just pages smeared with leftover paint and such from other projects) into the computer and added additional color to it. The I put the template I created over the background and printed the whole thing on card stock. Kinda cute. Hope she likes it.

Original Smush page

Original Smush page

Digitized Smush page

Digitized Smush page

I “heart” you- Final

Published: September 4, 2015

Thank you!


Original art

Original art

What a wonderful surprise getting a gift in the mail. I love getting mail. Back in the day when all we had was mail I lived for note mailed to me in summer bymy boyfriend. We wrote weekly to each other. Anyhow that is another time and place. Mail is wonderful and it gives me a good reason to make a thank you card in response. My inspiration actually came from a picture I cut out for collage ( remember all those magazines?) I loved the whimsical collage feeling of it and decided to use that as my basis. I struggle with the whole “copying” an image thing. I mean my brain tells me copying is bad but then I know artists look at things all the time. So I cant tell what is right and what is just me being hyper self critical.

Digitized Final

Anyhow  it is what it is. I also wanted to acknowledge where we were from and where we are now so I wanted some map pieces in there. I made the skirt and the map from
some scrap pieces I seem to save and pile up and so up close there is somewhat of a 3D effect with a bit of a drop shadow. Other than that I let it create itself. The only problem I have when I do that is sometimes I start thinking too much and this is what happened with the flowers I really did not like the two giant flowers hanging over her like eyeballs.

Luckily I have the means to fix that and into photoshop she went where I could enhance and add some items. First some ferns and leaves to make it more garden like and then I worked on the flowers. I moved the stem over and put some petals around the map pieces (actually rose petals from a scan I took a couple of years ago). I popped up the contrast and messed with some filters and came up with the final piece which is about 6×8. It looks washed out but because when a piece gets printed it darkens up again so I have to really lighten a picture up to print it at a level I find acceptable.

Now of course it needed to be shrunk and this is where I feel like I always misstep. As a card it was about 4×5 and the thank you on the front is dark and harder to read when smaller. So before I mailed it out I outlined it in white and that helped a lot.

I enjoyed making this as it was my first time back at art journaling in some months.  Hope you like it too Anne!


Published: September 2, 2015

Organize me!

More magazines

So many magazines!

I dont know why I bother to try and get anything done in the summer. It never happens. My time is not my own. However it is now September. School has resumed and I am back to work. Sort of. I spend the better part of August going through magazines I had collected (over 10 boxes worth) and cutting them up for collage images. Talk about repetitive! Still I was determined to get through them enough to at least clean them out of the garage and office. I still have a lot left but I have probably gone though about 2/3 of them. So thats good. Many that are left are Nat. Geos. and there are so many pics its almost easier to keep them whole.

Another project I tackled was my closest in the office which has been the “faux” attic since we moved in a year ago. A useless shelving

Clean closet!

Clean closet!

system meant most everything ended up on the floor. So we went out to Home Depot sunday and got shelving and I got busy cleaning out stuff. I figure if I must hoard things I should at least hoard what I like and get rid of the rest so in the last few days I have made a concerted effort to put stuff on Buy Nothing.  And if you have never heard of the Buy Nothing Project you should check it out…you get free stuff….like magazines :)

Next up is resolving what to do with unmounted stamps. I saw this great video the other day and I am off to Home Depot again tomorrow ( I hope) to work on that. If it works I will share some pics.

And while I did only a whopping 2 tutorials this summer ( I am mucho behind) and no digital scrapbooking I did manage to mostly keep up on the No excuses art journaling batches at a time and I am happy about that.  In the last week or so I have mae a couple of cards so watch out for posts on those.



Published: September 1, 2015