4×4’s and more…

“Give thanks for the rainbows, for the butterflies,
for all God’s creatures – large and small,
for the bright blue sky and the soft fog and the gentle rain,
for the tree veiled in the season’s first frost,
for the baby’s laugh, for the touch of a hand
and the whispered “I love you.”
– Jonathan Lockwood Huie

I finished a good book last week:  A Curious Man: The Strange and Brilliant Life of Robert “Believe It or Not!” Ripley by Neal Thompson.  Go here to check out a great article about the book.  I don’t read a lot of biographies but this one is excellent!

I finished eight more 4×4’s.  I’m going to have to hurry to attain my goal of 200 by the end of this year :)

This set numbers 161-164:





This set numbers 165-168:


…some random pages from my visual journal


…collage using an altered page from a children’s book:


my photos aren’t coming out very crisp….I’m looking for another camera



odds and ends collage:



here’s wishing all in the US a great Thanksgiving Day this Thursday with family & friends!!!

are all four wheels working?

I’m still gleaning from Erma Bombeck’s book.  It’s full of lots of wonderful quotes.  Here’s a quote about shopping carts…still true for today:

A safety check would reveal there isn’t a shopping cart that does not have all four wheels working.  Unfortunately, all four are locked in stable directions.  Three wheels want to shop and the fourth wants to go to the parking lot.” 

~Erma Bombeck~

I completed another set of 4×4’s last week. I made use of some painted magazine and deli papers.  This set numbers 157-160:





I’ve been working in the journal I made two weeks ago.  The first page is a watercolor face I glued into the journal:


This is a two page spread that doesn’t really go together.  I glued the watercolor face into the book and added the border:


This is a monochromatic watercolor face using light oxide red (Van Gogh):


These last two watercolors are mixed media paper.  I may glue them into the journal:



I was looking through my photos for one special photo but I couldn’t find it.  Our Rottie, Toby, passed over the rainbow bridge on Thursday.  Faithful friend and companion….there will be no other dog to take his place.  He didn’t like to have his photo taken,  and about the only ones we have are of him sleeping.  I couldn’t even find one of those…so,  I took that as a sign that he didn’t want his likeness on display.  RIP,  dear Toby…we miss you!!

have a good day…

“The expression “Have a good day” was born the week our oil supply was depleted, water became scarce, telephone rates went up, gasoline was in short supply, and meat, coffee, and sugar prices soared.  It was as if the warranty on the country had just expired.”  ~Erma Bombeck~1970’s

I’m having a good day…it’s the first day back on God’s time :)

I made a new journal last week…I sewed the signatures together on the sewing machine and used duct tape to put the signatures together.  Then,  I found the middle of the journal and sewed that to the cover using a simple pamphlet stitch.  I will be using this method again.  I wanted to practice using a composition book for the cover.  The next one I make, I think I’ll try using an old book for the cover.

I mostly used painted papers on the cover:


Here’s the introductory page…watercolor and collage:


I spilled some ivory paint the other day…so, I quickly swirled it on some magazine pages.  After the paint dried…I went over some of the paint with pan pastels.  I like the effect that I discovered accidentally:




I painted these 4×4’s last week.  They number 149-152:


I made this set of 4×4’s today.  They number 153-156:





Last week we went for a drive to look at the fall color.  We made a little circle and came back home.  When we drove in our driveway, I told my hubby:  I think the prettiest leaves are right here in our own yard.  Here’s a photo of the Hickory Tree in our backyard.  After a rain, the leaves look neon yellow:


Side yard:


Across the front yard looking down the street:


Everyone have a great week and be creative in all you do!

a pantyhose world…

A week ago last Friday, I went to our local “friends of the library” book sale.  I wasn’t looking for books to read…I was cruising for collage material.  Since getting a Kindle…all my reading material is on it.  I love my Kindle!  I found some old books to use for altered books or reuse the covers for journal covers.  One of the books I bought was by Erma Bombeck: if life is a bowl of cherries-what am I doing in the pits? I’d forgotten how funny she was. One of the chapter headings in the book is “A Pair of White Socks in a Pantyhose World.”  If you are over 40, you probably know about Bombeck and pantyhose. Here’s a quote from the book:

“I worry about scientists discovering someday that lettuce has been fattening all along.  But mostly, I worry about surviving.  Keeping up with the times in the world that changes daily.  Knowing what to keep and what to discard.  What to accept and what to protest.”

The above quote is from the introduction….she says this book is about surviving…it’s still applicable today…funny stuff about some serious subjects :)

Here are my recent 4x4s:

These number 137-140:





For this set, I used pages from the Bombeck book.  The first three were drawn with my Pentel Pocket Brush Pen and the last one is charcoal and pen.  These number 141-144:





I’m not really satisfied with these 4x4s but time is running out…so, I will include them.  These number 145-148:


until next time…be creative in all you do…

more 4×4’s…


Autumn is a season for big decisions — like whether or not it’s too late to start spring cleaning.

Autumn — time to drag out your winter clothes and see what kind of summer fun the moths had.


I need some new potholders and I’ve been thinking of making some for myself and maybe some for Christmas gifts. The Stitching Scientist has these.  Who knew there are so many tutorials and videos about how to make potholders.  The Ribbon Retreat blog offers this tutorial.

And then, I was looking at some other craft projects and found this great idea for recycling those wooden leaf and bowls that you can easily find at most flea markets.  Jennifer calls them Boho Chic Jewelry Trays. I’m sure they could be used for other items, as well.

On to this weeks 4×4’s.  This first set started with a magazine cover.  I put gesso on both sides.  I used acrylic paints, markers, and oil pastels.  These number 129-132:





I used watercolors, acrylic paints, and black acrylic ink and a dip pen on Bristol paper.  Before drawing the black lines…I brushed Liquitex Gold Interference paint over the entire surface.  This set numbers 133-136:





until next week…going to go hold my dog’s paw…he’s freaking out because of a thunder storm…

don’t take anything personally…

Don Miguel Ruiz’s “Four Agreements:

1.  Be impeccable with your word

2.  Don’t take anything personally

3.  Don’t make assumptions

4.  Always do your best

Good words to live by, but difficult to put into practice.  I need to reread the book.

I didn’t make any 4×4’s this week… but I have been sketching again.  I change from week to week.  This first one is me (from a photo).  I used graphite:


This is myself and my daughter (from a photo)…it’s not a good likeness:


This is a random drawing of no one in particular:


This a sketch from a Golden Book illustration:


I am taking another online class that began this week.  This is an excellent class so far.  The first master we are studying is Van Gogh.  It’s on Jeanne Oliver’s ning art site.  Check out the other masters coming up in the next few weeks.  I also like that she doesn’t charge a huge amount…it’s actually a bargain.  I have already gotten more than my money’s worth from the first lesson alone.  Here is my version of Van Gogh’s sketch in a letter to his brother, Theo, in January, 1882:


I’m going to try this again…something about the body proportion is off :)

I also got my latest art book from Amazon this week:


I like it…has lots of inspiration for making abstract art. The author makes this statement about the book:

“I want this book to be fun to read and easy to use without exhausting your attention span or your wallet.  I’ll keep the emphasis on making instead of thinking about making.”

…until next week


“if you do what you always did, you will get what you always got”   ~attributed to Albert Einstein~

This is a collage I made a few weeks ago.  It’s a page from a book about the sea and as the chapter title denotes, it tells what to do if your boat springs a leak.  I have no qualms about tearing pages out of the book because the information in it is most likely out of date now.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.  :)


I completed some more 4x4s yesterday.  This first set is all collage.  I took of photo of the piece before cutting it down into 4x4s:


The written French notes were in an old French text book I found at a local flea market.  Most of the other collage pieces are from a fashion magazine.  This set numbers 121-124:





This set includes oil pastels, acrylic paints, homemade stamps, Distress Inks and spray inks.  This set numbers 125-128:





Enjoy your day and have a great weekend!….until next time…