Sunday, September 15, 2013

Inspiration Elevator challenge- what do you find inspiring.

Inspiration Elevator

You may recall that the purpose of this challenge group is to take our scrapbooking to the next level, to stretch our creative process and to grow as artists by embracing challenges that make us think, work and grow. You can view all of the challenges our new Inspiration Elevator Blog, here.

Our challenge this month comes from the very talented Cathy Harper. Here's what she had to say in her very own words:
"I want to know what inspires you to create. As I was driving home the other day from my trip back to Black Hills, I saw a really cool billboard...clouds, the sun, and a few hearts. I immediately thought how great the design was and how I could transform it into a card or layout.(No, I didn't get a picture of it as it was the week of the annual Sturgis Bike Rally and no way was I pulling off the side of the interstate with all of that crazy traffic.) Even the other day, as I was walking through Target, I saw a couple of cute Baby gift bags that had great design principle that I could use as inspiration to create with too! Then it hit me that this would be a great challenge for my IE teammates. We recently had Sue's challenge where we were inspired by another teammate and lifted their style..but I want to know what else inspires you besides other designers cards and layouts. Are you a Pinterest addict like me? And find great design ideas there or in a magazine with a brilliant ad!? Find something inspires you, pin it or take a photo and create your work from must include a photo of your inspiration and a link (if there is one) with your project for the challenge!"

What inspires me?

My family. 
This is central to my life because I grew up in a broken home where my father and mother, although very loving towards their children, fought all the time. 

Eventually they divorced. I feel like I'm still dealing with the ramifications of their break up.

My husband and I met one warm summer evening in 1998. It was not love at first sight or anything like a romance novel.
It was like a kid's movie- "Up" to be exact.
We were fast friends and enjoyed each other's company immensely.

I like to say that one day I was watching him practice his salsas moves when it struck me;
"Damn! He's a sexy beast."

Funny how that goes- before he was just good 'ol Dave- best buddy- best pal.

Next minute I'm mauling him like a "twilight" vampire.

Good thing he was ok with that. 

Ten years later (don't ask- it was New York- no one thinks they are ready to marry till they hit 40) we married.

11 months later Lola was born- early due to severe complications but alive, thank goodness.

These days our friendship and patience is being tested by every financial issue imaginable.
But the trust and respect is still there.

We won't break.
We won't surrender to self pity or blame.
We will make it through this.
Two best friends and the talking spark plug they made...

And their whole crazy Latino extended family.
What? Did you think we faced these problems alone?

Since I'm working from an iPod Touch I can't link to the website that inspired this page (thank goodness for copy paste or else I wouldn't be able to give you the blog hop list at all) but you'll find my favorite scrap blogs right there on my side bar.
This page takes inspiration from Louise Nelson's style.

I couldn't find a family portrait small enough to fit area I was willing to cover in this page!
I really got to like how the magenta, yellow and blue-green paints mixed.

The feather stamp and chipboard are from Scrap FX. Flowers from Prima and Petaloo. Acrylic Paint from Martha Stewart. 

Please try to swing by the rest of the blogs linked below to see what the other Inspiration Elevator designers have created:

If you feel inspired to play along with my challenge this month, please share it using the linky tool on our Inspiration Elevator blog and/or our Inspiration Elevator Facebook page. We'd LOVE to see what you made!

Until next time, keep doing what you love.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Project Life with no kit and no clue

Hello everyone,

I am returning to New York City- woo hooo!
The truth is that Dave and I embarked on a "business opportunity" with little planning or ideas on how to hustle in a new city. 
We thought our optimism and willingness to work hard would work it's magic- "The Secret" wise.
It's been stressful and frankly I value my marriage and Lola's peace of mind too much to keep testing either one.

The going critique is that I gave up too early but this is a marathon- I need a water break.

Without getting into a protracted "woe is me" story (since, frankly, taking off with no real business plan was dumb)- I seriously can't  take the unpredictability of freelance work. 

I'm pretty impulsive but I've never been a fly by the seat of my pants, take big financial risks for possible gain in the future kind of person.

So I'm retreating to NYC to take advantage of free child care (thank goodness for grandmas! Hello? Major underestimated asset!)

I also plan to take some business and computer courses and get me up to speed ' cause being a Mom for 4 years has totally altered my skill set- lol!

Anyway I managed another Project Life page this week.

I printed a bunch of tiny photos at Walgreen's and wanted to use them before I left.

I'll be glad to return to my own desk and computer again- next time I won't leave without them!

Here are some close ups of the gesso covered Kraft paper inserts from Scrap FX.

Scrap FX has a variety of mini chipboard designs available for "micro scrapping"-feathers, apples and these teeny oak trees are my current favorites.

Why are these photos so blue? 
I shot these very last minute as the sun was setting. No amount of ipod app digital retouching is going to take that bluish tint away. 
I'll have to reshoot, but that's ok.

"Do overs" are my specialty.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, September 2, 2013

A simple page for Scrap FX

Hello and happy Labor Day folks!

The last couple of weeks I've been trawling galleries looking for inspiration.

I felt my pages were starting to get a little repetitive.

I came across CFlattop's gallery over at and was incredibly inspired.
I  love how she reduces details to the essential and how she uses flashes of color to focus attention on her photos.

I decided to stop trying to make technique fireworks happen and start focusing on editing again.

Here is the resulting page:
Please excuse the grease stain. I laid the page down on the table after
I was done only to find half a peanut underneath.

Foiled in my quest for perfection yet again!

I used Scrap FX Fern Flourish and mini wings chipboard.
I also used Home 2 and Big Words flair from A Flair For Buttons.
The card stock is from American Crafts and the stencil from
Stencil1. The feathers were cut from an Echo Park print.

It's funny what we sacrifice in search of "progress".
My definition of forward motion doesn't include material things.
It's time with my family, being a Mom. 

Have a great day off!!!