Monday, April 22, 2013

This Blog Has Moved!

* As of January 2013, this blog has moved to - please update your bookmarks and/or subscribe to the newsletter.

Head over to my new website today and see what's new!

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Monday Musings on a Tuesday

* As of January 2013, this blog has moved to - please update your bookmarks and/or subscribe to the newsletter.

(because I'm posting this in the wee hours of the morning and it's still Monday night to me!)

The brand-spanking-new header image from my website and Facebook page.
I have owned my website for almost 2 years and I think it's about time I actually do something with it. It's time to put it to work!

I will be syndicating blog posts between my website and this blog. I don't want to delete this blog because it gets a lot of traffic and it would be foolish of me to cut that off. 

{Edited on 11th Feb. 2013 to add: I'm not deleting this blog, but I will not be syndicating posts. All posts from this point onwards will be at Current newsletter subscribers will still receive their newsletters as before, but from Top Floor Treasures, rather than from Fordie Fresh Blog. If you're not subscribing yet, please click here to subscribe.}

For my first post over on the website, I thought I would share with you the double-page art journal spread I spent the weekend working on, so I'm posting it here too.

I have always wanted to be able to paint pretty faces so I was really pleased when I came across one of Tamara LaPorte's videos where she showed step-by-step how to do it. In the photo, you can see the original pencil sketch that I did whilst following along with Tamara's video, and the completed painting.

I have to say, I'm pretty pleased with the whole thing! I have had some wonderful feedback on it, which has encouraged me to do more of this sort of work.

For this journal spread I used: crafter's acrylic paint (flesh colour), Reeve's acrylics (white and ochre), some rubber stamps with Stazon ink and several colours from the Derwent Inktense range.

If you have never used Inktense pencils, you are seriously missing out! Look how vibrant they are! You just scribble them on the page and then 'activate' them with a wet paintbrush or a baby wipe and they instantly work like watercolour paints. The big difference is - they are ink, not paint, and once dry, it is permanent.

This journal spread took a lot of work for me. I'm a bit of a perfectionist so there were quite a lot of times when I went over what I had already drawn or painted, wanting to get it 'just right'. It's still not perfect, but I do think it is beautiful in its imperfection.

Why don't you take a quick look at the Top Floor Treasures website before you go? I'd be happy to know what you think of it, bearing in mind it is nowhere near finished yet.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

*VIDEO DEMO* Quick & Easy Zendoodled Valentines Cards

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If I had to hazard a guess, I would say that the majority of cardmakers are women. For Valentine's Day they might be planning to make a card for their male partner. Most cards I see for men tend to be either humourous or quite soppy (think hearts and flowers). How about something a bit different this year? In this video demo that I produced for Kuretake ZIG, I show you two very simple cards that are quick and easy to make, that DO have hearts, but are not soppy in the slightest!

Video not loading? View it on YouTube

All you need to make these cards are (depending on which one you prefer):
For the second card I used the ZIG Art & Graphic Twin for writing the sentiment as I find it smoother to write with than the Kurecolor marker, but really that's down to personal preference and you can use any pen you choose.

*This is the first video demo I have ever produced and I would love your feedback on what I could have done better. Your thoughts in the comments if you have time would be appreciated. Thank you.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Snow & Week 2 of Project Life 365

* As of January 2013, this blog has moved to - please update your bookmarks and/or subscribe to the newsletter.

Last week was a bit odd here at Top Floor Treasures HQ. My daughter was ill and off school so my work has taken a bit of a back seat, but I still got some sales through my Etsy shop without even trying, so that's good news!

I've been continuing with Project Life 365, and got my daughter involved in it too. She is 14 and takes some lovely photos, if you'd like a look at hers, you can see them by clicking here.

Here are my own snaps for the last 7 days with the inspiration prompts underneath. The links will take you to the full size photos on Flickr.

1. 7/365 ~ Simplicity  ~ A close-up of part of an art journal page (which I will show you all of very soon!) 
2. 6/365 ~ Still Life ~ A small selection of my art supplies 
3. 8/365 ~ Front Door ~ Yep, that's my front door. Really ugly, no window.  
4. 9/365 ~ In A Drawer ~ Washi tapes, Smash tapes, pens and pencil cases.
5. 10/365 ~ Game ~ We have a LOT of games in this house, but I thought I'd choose one of the most simple games of all: playing cards.
6. 11/365 ~ Signature ~ This is a piece I've been working on the last couple of weeks, a mixed media collage. I've been recording myself as I worked on it and will have the video ready to show you soon!
7. 12/365 ~ Mini ~ Small pieces of art, a couple of ACEO originals measuring 2.5 x 3.5 inches each.
8. Join me on Project Life 365!

Yesterday afternoon we went on a chilly walk in the frosty forest, it was amazingly quiet and almost dark by the time we left. I love walking through the forest, we know it like the back of our hands but it seems to look so different every time we go. Always something new to see or discover.

But today we have the long-awaited snow! Alas, I'm not in the forest to take photos, so here's a pic from the same forest when it snowed there last year.

Beautiful! I hope we get lots more snow so we can go and play in the forest again, it was so much fun last year.

Is it snowing where you are? Do you love it or hate it?

Monday, January 07, 2013

Project Life 365 - Week 1

* As of January 2013, this blog has moved to - please update your bookmarks and/or subscribe to the newsletter.

I've signed up to do Project Life 365 a week late, so here's a catch-up and I'll post week 2 when I have my next 7 images. Why don't you sign up too? Click on the last link above.

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