Thursday, July 14, 2011

Paint & Scrapbooking

Since the garden walk on Sunday inspiring me to paint, and my want to combine it with scrapbooking I did a bit of both today, now it’s more of a coloring book style, nothing free hand painting. But still painting with a brush and fun at that.

This is some older paper by Rusty Pickle company (sadly out of business) called Pop Star, I have a bunch of this line, and it’s literally black and white, doodly kind of scrapbook paper. NOW it is regular paper, so if you water color on it, you can’t get too wet, or it’s, well a mess.

AND since I had my two assistants with me…


Mia chose to take some of her unfinished art work, up into the cat tower and work. While her brother, Alex chose to meow like a cat for 20 minutes.

I did have my other two assistants, Jordan who is not pictured was busy catching Bob, the fly who is trapped in the basement art room, and catching Bob meant sitting on my work, nothing says water coloring like cat hair.

AND there is this princess Chloe, who was ALL in my business.


Reasons enough why I chose to work on a easier piece…


I had a cute picture of my mom with her Mother’s Day arbor that we got her, and though this BIG flower would be cute to go with. This is after I added the water color crayons.


Yes they are amazing and they are by the company Stampin’ Up! I demonstrated for them for 6 years and LOVE their product. (there are also water color pencils out there, same idea, but the crayons to me are softer, and easier to work with)



They are that simple. Color your picture, and it doesn’t have to be ALL colored in, you can kinda sketch it. The water coloring part will blend it.

I use an Aqua Painter (again by Stampin’ Up!) but you can buy them at retail stores. Simple, fill with water, squeeze and water come through the brush. Just eliminates the cup of water. (see small children and cats above if you question my reasons)




Once ALL is blended, you get a much softer look. I did the dark pink first,wiped of excess color onto my hand (yes I do this out of habit. It’s the way I’ve been doing it since I was a kid) then switch to a different color, be cautious when doing lighter colors by darker, they may run together. But it’s water color so a bit of mess is good.

AND there you have it. A quick scrapbook page, that took me about 35 minutes to create!


JCat McGack

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Garden walk of creativity


The Annual Minooka Garden walk was yesterday, I go each year with my mom. Just the two of us. It’s fantastic to walk among some one else’s garden. To get to see what they create and labor over. To chat with gardeners, to really get a feel for how they love their yards.

So the first house has this in the front yard. My heart is happy already. DSC_0351

Then I see that they have these empty stations set up all over the yard, under pine trees and then tables with women painting in the garden! I chat with them for a few minutes, finding out that on Thursday nights at the local library they have open night. It’s free, you can sketch, paint, and do what every creative art you are in the mood for. Now I love to go and scrapbook but as of this year I am pretty set on cropping at home. I have a HUGE space for it. And cropping is a bit involved when it comes to the packing process (I have to take EVERYTHING!)

But painting and drawing? Simple. Sketch pad, paints, pencils, WAY less supplies. I could do this. AND make new friends? For free? Down the street? THEN they asked me to join them… right now! And paint!

So I did. OMG it was so much fun. We chatted and painted, I stayed for 40 minutes, and my wonderful mom, stood and watched. Thanks mom. She knew how much that meant to me.



I did what I do best, and that was a tree. I picked ONE color, and with watercolors the amount of water you use changes the darkness of the paint. It was fantastic. And this was just house #1 of seven!!


 Oh AND they had a canvas under a tree, and it was for anyone who came through to paint on. They wanted it to be the Garden Walk painting. So mom and I added a little ourselves.

The next house was just whimsical, and random, SO my way of gardening. DSC_0363

Lots of shade, lots of art too. She had paintings DSC_0372

from a local artist, plates hanging on the fence and half in her dirt. She had shown me her label maker, and her tags, she labels EVERY plant in her yard.

And old wooden play set is now a bird/squirrel feeder, she had a pond. BUT not for fish, for birds. Very shallow and clean.


Then there is this house… this is a combination of my mother and I. Both cute, a dash of country, but again the random whimsy look I love.


I mean WHO nails ALL these signs to their house?! I was in love!


And the details! Look at these mini lanterns! LOVED it!


And below check out the sink! How cute is that? NOW I know not every yard could pull that off, there a close line between cute as hell and hillbilly heaven




Oh and there are these all over this yard! They were glass bottles tied to stakes, with a note in each, usually about where the flowers came from, or what they mean to the family. This one was sweet. And they had a HUGE section of beautiful daisies.


So this shot did exactly the opposite of what I wanted, (Still getting the hang of my dad’s SLR) and I wanted to get the cupcake. It had a violet on top, and I ate it. (most flowers are edible) the cupcake too was amazing, and the home owners daughter was starting a baking company, and who better to try it out on?

So I was freaking excited on the front porch and even MORE excited when I started to notice the name of the home owner. OMG it’s THE preschool everyone talks about.

Sure enough, there is THIS one preschool that is RAVED about, by everyone in town. And you have to know some one to get her info, she is not on the internet, or in the phone book. AND there is a two year waiting list. SO MAYBE I could check it out because NOW I have her info! Wee!


Right so, there was so much to see, the yard, the play area, ALL of it was amazing, AND they let you go through the house to leave! Very cool.

And THIS was just house #3… well house #4 was a repeat from last year, and well it was about 95 in the shade, so we skipped it, then houses #5-#7 were cute, but nothing like the first three houses.

SO much fun, SO inspired, hoping for all this rain to make my garden happy, then make my dirt soft, and Wednesday it should cool down and I can go out and garden! Till then it’s house work and hoping for some art room time! Happy creating!

JCat McGack