Craving creativity • Curating creativity • Cultivating creativity
Creative inspiration • Creative instigation • Creative investigation
Investigate curating • Investigate inspiration • Investigate creativity
Lately I’ve been obsessed with creativity. Learning how to get more, figuring out what inspires me to be more creative, finding ways to hoard those sources of creative inspiration. I’m also curious about how I can inspire creativity in others.
What makes one person more creative than another, how do different people react to the same creative inspiration? The web is trending toward a culture of curation right now – rather than generating more and more content, people are curating the content that’s already there. Can simple curation help to inspire me and those whose lives I touch?
Can you cause one person to become more creative, simply by being more creative yourself? Can you instigate creativity? Cultivating it like you would a vegetable garden? Sowing seeds of inspiration so you can later reap the fruits of creativity.
Please join me in this quest for creativity. What inspires you? How do you stay fresh and feed your creativity so you don’t burn out? Tell me. I’d love to know your secret to staying creative.
Have you ever wanted to try silver leafing, but felt intimidated by the process and expense? Here’s an alternative. Using wallpaper paste and aluminum foil, this faux silver leaf project can be used on many different DIY projects. I decided to start small with a wooden letter. But you could use this technique on furniture, walls or just about anything you can imagine. I originally found this project on Pinterest from Red Hen Home — she covered bedside tables using the faux silver leaf awesomeness. And check out the silver leaf wall at The Ivy Cottage.
Start with a wooden letter you can get from any craft store. A roll of aluminum foil (the thinner and cheaper, the better), wallpaper paste, scissors, and a paint brush if you choose (I used my fingers).
Next cut a bunch of aluminum foil. I used about 18 inches from the roll and then cut it into thin strips – I wanted the sharp, straight edge on the pieces I attached – but you can tear the foil into random pieces or cut into larger pieces. Whatever you choose is fine. I learned the hard way to cut the pieces individually because if you try to cheat and fold the large piece in half or quarters, then cut several layers at a time – you end up with a botched mess and the pieces are attached to each other and you can’t easily tear them apart. So do it the hard way.
Now the fun part! Dip your fingers into the wallpaper paste and smear a thin layer onto the wooden letter, then start applying the foil onto the letter. Just repeat this process until everything is covered. If this is your first time, you might want to choose a less complex letter than the “K” (why do I always pick the most difficult option with the most curves and angles?).
When the letter is completely covered, let it dry. I elevated the letter using small bowls – use whatever is handy – so it doesn’t stick to your work surface overnight. Don’t worry about the spots you missed. We’ll cover that up the next day with some alcohol inks.
Once the wallpaper paste is complete dry the next day, now it’s time to make it pretty with some color. I chose to use three shades of brown for a coppery look.
Just drop a few drips of each color all over the letter and then blend it in with your cotton-clad dabber. I took the cotton off the dabber at the end and used it to get into all the angles and the edges (yes, my finger are now latte, caramel and ginger colored).
I love the effect!
Cut a piece of cardstock for the back to cover up the messy edges. I used my Xyron machine to make the cardstock into a sticker and just pressed it onto the back.
I plan to display this on the Ikea picture rails I have in my living room. (Just ignore those frames that still need photos, pretend there’s something beautiful there!) I chose the letter K for my niece Krista and figured that if I didn’t like how it turned out that I could just spray paint it and give it to her to put in her bedroom. But, unfortunately for Krista, I LOVE this project and I’m keeping it.
A photograph taken in Frankenmuth, Michigan of a spent hydrangea. I’ve always loved the beauty of the rough and tumble in life – worn down barns, peeling paint, a rusty old Ford truck abandoned in the field. I also love beautiful flowers that are just passed their peek beauty, which is probably why I love autum so much. Such rich, deep colors of earth and nature. This photo represents all that I love about the rustic feel of nature.
Wow! Has it really been six months since I last posted here? It certainly hasn’t been that long since I’ve created anything, though! I’ve been creative in the kitchen and playing with my camera and busily learning all the graphic design stuff I can but mostly chained to my keyboard as I finish up the writing of my first book.
My goal for this year was to be more creative and track my efforts toward that goal — well, I was definitely whole piles of creative. I just neglected that second part of tracking my efforts and showing them here on the blog.
So it’s now January and my mother informed me the other day that I need to come up with an idea for this year’s Gal’s Day Out craft that I’ll be teaching. Gal’s Day Out is an all-day craft day for the ladies in my mom’s church. About 150 ladies and girls get to attend three different craft classes throughout the day and can pick from over 20 different crafts to learn. Try as I might every year, my mother never lets me say “NO” to teaching a class. So after a dozen years of brainstorming, it’s getting harder and harder to come up with something creative.
But I stumbled acoss a cute idea! A Paper Patchwork Notebook over on iHanna’s blog. Check out her tutorial. My challenge is the budget. I’m allowed $3 per student for the craft project and I could easily eat up that whole budget with just a nice notebook. I’m thinking about using a hardcover composition book and relying on my own huge stash of scrap paper in my scrapbooking stash and donations of paper from church members. We’ll see if I can find a good deal on Mod Podge too.
I don’t have a deadline for my prototype yet, but I’m sure Mom will be calling soon to start bugging me for it. I might even remember to take pictures and show you all how they turned out.
I am coming to realize more and more each day how much creativity and art is involved in graphic design. Yes, I always knew it was all rolled into one – but the more I learn and the more I do, the more I realize how important my love of art plays into my digital designs.
For instance, in one of my graphic design classes this past week we were tasked with an assignment to create a ransom note from typography we found in magazines. After seeing some of the other finished projects by fellow students, I realize how much my art background (scrapbooking, paper crafting and crafting in general) play into my final projects for school. My ransom note looked more like a page from an art journal than any others I saw in class. Other students went the traditional route (like this picture). I first covered my entire page with scrapes of a single color paper then sanded the black paper for an aged look… then build my words on top of that background, added a border, some alcohol inks and a coat of mod podge. (Wish I’d scanned it before turning it is!).
Another project involved re-creating a kitty litter bag and the corporate identity of the brand. Paws & Claws is actually a brand of pet food and supplies sold at Tractor Supply Company. We worked in teams to create a new kitty litter bag design. Our team also created a new logo for the brand. I love the ampersand in this design!
The more I work on graphic design projects, the more I realize how important art is in my life. Even when I’m buried in school work or office work, when I do digital graphic design… I’m still being an artist and I’m still employing my creativity. It all rolls into one big ball of art.