Monday, December 12, 2011

Dreaming of White Christmas

Some of my Christmas favourites from the world of Etsy....

Monday, December 5, 2011

FREE Xmas graphics! - Make your own cards tutorial

With Christmas fast approaching, I have yet again run out of time to create and sell Christmas cards in my Etsy shop this year. So..........to make up for it, I have instead created a whole bunch of Christmas graphics and ornaments available for download. As this puts the onus on you, the reader, to make and print your own cards, I have created a step-by-step tutorial for those of you who have never done this before. It's not so hard, and the kids can contribute also. Grab your FREE graphics above - click on each pic to enlarge, then right click (for PC) or control-click (for Mac) so you can download to your computer. This tutorial is for a completed A6 size card (measuring 5.92 x 4.2 inches or 148x105mm folded).


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1. To begin with you will need an A4 sheet of cardstock, preferably white. Ensure it will pass through your printer. Most newsagents sell A4 sheets at 120gsm which is suitable for most printers. One A4 sheet makes two cards.

2. Measure and draw a line halfway across the page, dividing the sheet into 2 equal halves.

3. Using a steel ruler and cutting knife, slice the sheet into 2 pieces. You now have 2 cards.

4. Take one half, position it horizontally, and again, measure and mark the halfway point with a faint pencil line. Using the ruler as a guide, lightly run the knife along the pencil line only to score the paper, but do not slice through it. This is where you will fold the card after printing it.

5. The side with the score mark will be the outside of the card. You can use a clean eraser to rub out the pencil line. Repeat stage 4 with the 2nd half sheet to make 2 blank cards. 

6. For printing, use a graphics program on your computer to create an A5 document with a centre guideline.


7. Insert or place your Christmas graphics to the right hand side of the document only. This will be the front of your card. Keep all elements a good 10mm away from the edges of the document. Design to your heart's content! For this example, I used multiple elements.
8. Load your blank card into your printer tray (with the scored side upwards-this is the side to be printed on). Ensure your print settings are for an A5 document centred horizontally or vertically (depending on your printer). You can always do a trial print using cheap copy paper to check positioning. 

9. Your finished printout should look like the computer document you created.

10. To finish, fold the card along the score mark made earlier, write your own personal message inside, and hey presto....you've made your own Christmas card!

All it needs now is a matching envelope. Envelopes can be purchased at most newsagencies or stationery shops in multiple packs.

For more downloadable Christmas elements, visit my Etsy shop section 'Christmas goods'

Have a fabulous Christmas everyone!

All artwork and graphics ©Stella Peterson. Please do not sell or pass off any downloads as your own.






Saturday, October 15, 2011

My 3 days of peace & relaxation


My glorious stay at 'Cottage by Cornwall' in Moonta SA....






....the breakfast nook.....bacon & eggs for brunch...



....a soak in the bath....aaah....




....a well stocked kitchen....



the charm of the old....


...mixed with the new...


...a comfy bed....




...a beautiful cottage garden....



......it was a shame to leave.




Photos © S. Peterson 2011





Thursday, September 8, 2011

Launching my ACEO line

Hello friends,

As mentioned a couple of posts ago, I will be listing ACEOs (or Artists Trading cards as I like to call them) in my online shop. I've been drawn to creating these miniatures for a long time now and have become addicted to them. I find that due to my limited funds, they are the perfect size for me. I can experiment with mixed media and various effects - without blowing my budget! The sky's the limit with ATCs. If I can find a way to attach and secure found objects, fabric, embellishments etc to these cards, then I will!

Many traditional collage artists turn to digital scrapbooking techniques. I'm doing the reverse. After years spent in front of computers, I find handmade construction quite fulfilling. For me, there's a therapeutic quality about it. I love the tactile nature of it, and the use of various tools to create the finished pieces. It's akin to jewellery making or metal smithing - although I love making pictures too much to turn to pure jewellery making. Perhaps, jewellery with pictures in it? – who knows where this journey will take me.


View more of my ATCs at Crimson Circle Studios. There will be new pieces added in the coming days.


Enjoy,
Stella


Friday, September 2, 2011

And the winner is......

Thank you to all who participated in the 'Name this print' competition. I really WAS stuck for a title for this piece, and it was interesting to read the varied interpretations from different people. From a science-fiction angle 'Lucid Dream' was a consideration (I'm a big fan of the movie Vanilla Sky, in which the Lucid Dreams corporation promises eternal life through sleep dreaming). I also liked 'hazy serendipity' because this piece was a bit of a 'happy accident' which almost ended in the trash can half way through its making! The references to snake charming and venom were quite intriguing and conjured up images of belly dancing and black magic.

In the end, I decided that the winning title will be......(drum roll).......'ELECTRA'........by Anastasia from Sydney. Congratulations Anastasia! I will be in touch soon.

I chose the name 'Electra', because I think it has a mystical, ancient feel about it. I've since discovered that in Greek mythology, Electra was a princess and daughter of King Agamemnon. Together with her brother, she plotted the revenge killing of the man who murdered her father!....Very fitting.....My Electra appears on the brink of pain and anger, dazed and confused....but at the same time, very scheming. And to round it off, I am of Greek heritage, so it's the perfect title! Thanks Anastasia!



Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Sneak peek - new handmade artists cards!

These miniature collage pieces have been in the making for a long time. They incorporate digital media as well as 3D embellishments (pendants, brads, fabric flowers, crystals and stickers.) They also include found anonymous quotes which centre around the theme of stillness and silence.
I must say, they are SO much fun to create and highly addictive! I can see myself cutting, glueing,  sticking and sewing to all hours of the night!!! – a total escape from my 'real' job. What I didn't realise is that just as much time goes into making these miniatures as it does with larger pieces. The artist's style, design and use of colour are all still contained, except in a much smaller format.


And these art cards are small !!! – 2.5" x 3.5" (6.4 cm x 8.9 cm) – no bigger than a playing card. This is the standard size of an ATC (artist trading card), sometimes also referred to as an ACEO (Art Cards, Editions and Originals). And yes, these cards are sold or traded all over the world - by artists, enthusiasts and collectors. This may just turn into a lifelong pursuit for me!


These can be found in my Etsy shop under the section ATCs.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Name this print competition! NOW CLOSED


Just lately, I've been going through a bout of 'artists block' (too much work and not enough play!). This piece was a result of 'digital doodling' on a self-portrait during this time. I virtually gave myself 'digital cosmetic surgery' including a nose job, collagen injections, contact lenses, and 'medusa' hair! The finished pic is interesting to look at, but has no real meaning!

This piece needs a name! I invite anyone to give this piece a title, an identity. All suggestions will be considered. The winner will be chosen at my discretion and the piece will adopt the winning title. As a reward, the winner will receive for free, their choice of any two 5x5 prints from my Etsy shop (valued at $26 USD). This competition is open to anyone. Leave your suggestion in the comments below (one per person please), and don't forget to include your favourite 5x5 prints. Feel free to invite anyone else you know to enter this competition. Alternatively, drop me a line at crimsoncirclestudios@hotmail.com.
See all my 5x5 prints here.

Entries close August 31st. Winning entry announced September 1st.
Good Luck !!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

How the Chinese do Swan Lake - A MUST SEE




Aside from a life long passion in art, I also have a keen interest in dance (of any kind). Having taken adult Jazz and Tap classes for almost two years, I appreciate the hard work that goes into making a performance look effortless. But I know my limitations and realise that to look and move like a professional dancer, one has to start from a very, very young age. Well........the ballet dancer in this clip must have learned to dance before she could walk!!! I've never seen anything so breathtakingly beautiful! This is definitely a new interpretation of Swan Lake, done to the utmost perfection....as only the Chinese circus can do. Enjoy!


http://www.nzwide.com/swanlake.htm

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The joys of selling local

I always feel a sense of achievement every time I sell a piece of my own work - more so
when I sell to repeat customers.
This set of notecards was sold to local customers in my hometown who have regularly purchased from me in the past two or so years. There's a lot to be said about getting to know your customers, because I met this couple face to face only once at a local market stall many years ago where they first saw my artwork. I didn't even have an online shop back then, just an email address and a handful of business cards. They must have been impressed because they've followed my progress to this day.
These and all other customers are like gold to me, not because they buy my stuff, but because they help push my work a little further around the globe - and for this I'm truly indebted to them.


Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Free downloads - Art Nouveau

Some Art Nouveau patterns from my digital collection over the years. Most are free samples from Dover publications.These are copyright-free for use in your own arts/crafts. Please do not sell as your own. Enjoy, and feel free to share your artwork by posting a link here.