Heard a bird sing…

Heard a bird sing…

Hi there!
Thanks for stopping by! Am feeling the benefits of the sun here in New Mexico.  We went for a walk up the road to the Indian ruins of El Quarai yesterday. 
The sun was amazingly warm, not a cloud in the sky – and yet the snow crunched underfoot. 
The birds – mainly bluebirds actually – swooped around us, and a couple of jet black crows observed us from a distance. It certainly is the Land of Enchantment. Not a soul in sight, no other people. just Dave, me and the birds. A far cry from the rumble tumble of L.A. last weekend!
So I thought it would be cool to show you another one of the projects I did on US TV last week. I know that many of you tracked the Create and Craft TV Stateside, which is super! But nevertheless, this red cardinal stamp set, complete with masks, deserves another airing!
Ready? Let’s get started…

Cover with a mask and stamp the smaller one into place.
Using a make-up sponge, carefully wipe the black ink from the mask into the back of the smaller bird. this will look like shadow later. Now cover him up too.
Using a Clarity Brush, add green ink behind the birds. 
Now remove the masks, and add the outy mask to the large bird. Here’s how to achieve a beautiful almost airbrushed effect very quickly, using nothing but a brush and a make-up sponge. 
Dried Marigold first. then Fired Brick to really add a vivid colour to the cardinal’s breast.
Use Post-Its to create a box over the birds, like a frame.
Now stamp the branches which come in the set around the frame in black.
Next, load up the green brush again, and add a light green hue around the frame,
just like this. That way, even where you haven’t stamped the branches, the frame will be defined. 
Colour in the little leaves using Distress Markers, and then squiggle a pair of jiggly lines around the box. 
Let’s get in a little closer, so you see what I mean….
Then you can colour in the overlaps to create a kind of tangled ribbon or threads.
Use the same Distress Markers to add more vibrance to the birds too.
Than all that is required is a litlte matting and layering. A very traditional, fresh piece of art, methinks.
Throw a little sunlight on it and WoW!!!
But I want to show you something which will blow your doors off. The power of the stamp. Give this image, this bird stamp to somebody else, like Karen Hayselden in this caes, and watch how another mind can translate the self-same birds. Ready for this?
Isn’t that astounding?! I had to look twice to make sure it was even the same birds! Marvellous artwork.
So this week, while I’ve got a little time, I’m going to take inspiration from Karen, and alter these 2 birds  too. I have never really done artwork like that, but I really want to have a go. At the CHA, I had a good talk to Dyan Reavely, an old mate of mine. She gave me the kick up the proverbial to give altered art a go, too. Just for fun. 
Want to join me? Use these birds, or any stamp you can see fun in!!! Let’s try, shall we? Who’s up for it? It can’t be that hard, can it? I’m thinking I may have to get my old sewing machine out too. I like the look of sewing and mixing paint with stitching. Email me your work and we can have an altered art gallery on Facebook when I get back to something more flexible than a little Ipad!!!
Leave an uplifting comment, share the moment!
Lots of love,

49 thoughts on “Heard a bird sing…

  1. Love your artwork today Barbara, and thanks for sharing the work you did for the US shows, as I missed them all whilst on my holidays! Also that artwork from Karen is amazing!!! Can't wait to get back into my craftroom to try something wild!!! Thanks, Susan x

  2. Hi Barbara, gorgeous scenery near you and that sky is sooooo blue! I love this set – it's on order – and your art work really shows it off. I saw Karen's artwork on the programme and thought how clever she is. Thanks for the challenge – I'll see what I can come up with – may take a while though! Loved Dave's new look as well, white all in ones could be the next fashion statement! Hope you have a lovely day xx

  3. What a versatile stamp! I love cardinals. I also love what Karen did too. Just shows another level.
    I am really enjoying seeing New Mexico again ~ how fortunate you are indeed, and thank you for bringing us along {we are all very well behaved, I do think} ~~~Deb

  4. I love the these, I went to school in the US and our emblem was the Cardinal so I must order these. Will definitely keep having a go at altered art, I'll master it one day. Hope you both are having a fab relaxing break, it looks so peaceful there. Have fun. J x

  5. What a delightful place to have a home – enjoy every second.
    Love the bird stamps and would like to say what a fabulous addition Karen is to your DT – true altered art xxxx

  6. What a coincidence, I looked out my window this morning and sat there in the snow in my garden was a little robin red breast, I opened up your blog and you had used the red cardinal bird stamps! Love both pieces of artwork, it just goes to show how versatile your stamps are, thank you for sharing them with us. Enjoy your break and don't lose Dave in his white suit in all that snow xxx

  7. What a beautiful place to be Barbara and I have just been looking at Dave's pictures of the local wild life. Great card love what you have done. Looking forward to seeing your altered stuff xx

  8. Wow I love your Cardinal card Barbara. Such stunning colours. Hmmm altered art?? Now that really is a challenge! Shall I try it?? Who knows!! Lol

  9. Stunning artwork from both yourself Barbara and Karen, both very different but equally fantastic. That's what I enjoy most seeing what you and everyone on the DT produces with the same stamps, great inspiration.

    Glad you're enjoying the break xx

  10. Both of those pieces are amazing. Not sure I would be any good at altered art, might get my granddaughter to have a go. She is the real arty one. Enjoy rest of your break xx

  11. Your artwork is gorgeous and Karen's is so cool! It's amazing what a fabulous stamp can become – two totally different amazing pieces of art – endless possibilities! Your tranquil holiday looks wonderful! xxx

  12. Hi Barbara,
    I liked this card so much when you showed it on TV… a really beautiful card.

    I´m a bit sad about the red cardinals cause I took a lot of photos of them when I made holidays in Kauai a year ago. And by transfering the photos from the camera to the PC all pictures from Kauai where lost. I only had the other ones from Oahu and Maui. Don´t know how this happened???

    And look what difference it makes when the sunshine hits the card. I only take photos of my cards in the sunshine. Not easy in winter when you wait for the sun to shine three ot four days but I´m patient ;-))
    Enjoy your day
    Rolf xxx

  13. Hi Barb,
    This is fab, and I love the altered art by Karen. I have some ATCs to do this morning so, being faint of heart, I'm going to do some altered art!! Start small and work up, what do you think?
    Keep on enjoying yourselves xx.

  14. Hi Barbara Oh another look at your beautiful scenery and that wonderful blue sky. You look as though you are having a wonderful time. The cardinal demo was as great and Karens take on the birds is fab (love the hats !). Have fun playing. Love Diane xxx

  15. Beautiful artwork, love the birds, waiting for my order to arrive so I can play. I agree, that Karen is a great addition to your design team, I think her take on the birds was, is, fantastic. Looking forward to seeing your take on the altered art, I think it will be amazing. It looks like a really beautiful place where you are, thank you for letting us join you and Dave on your holiday. Michelle XX

  16. Wow how different they look, one inky master piece and then one altered art version that looks so different! I got myself an art journal late last year to try out some arty things…………….. Just need to build myself up to it! Would zentangle be classed as altered art? Xx

  17. It looks very serene where you are, I'm glad you're having a relaxing time. I do love Karen's take on the birds, this sort of art is right up my street! I love the fun colours. Xx
    I think I will have to have a go at this. Xx

  18. I love your card with the cardinals, so vibrant, and as for Karen's take on the stamp you really do have to look closely to see the birds are the same but it does look fun. I'm not really in to altered art but I am trying journaling this year so maybe I can include some altered art in that.
    Jackie x

  19. The birds are so vibrant and the sun effect -wow. I'm not sure about altered art, well I'll just have to 'suck it and see' Thank you for the wonderful 'holiday snaps'. Everywhere looks so clear and crisp. X

  20. I love this stamp ( I birds fascinate me and I have quite a few of your lovely bird stamps ) thank you for your brilliant tutorials which are always a source of ideas and inspiration.
    X Chris

  21. Hi Barbara, your artwork is beautiful, thank you. It's good to have step by steps of the US demos on here too because watching them on the laptop means I can't record them for following.

    Thank you for sharing your holiday photos too, I'm enjoying seeing a totally different part of the world. Am I missing something, Dave in a white babygro?

    Karen's artwork is soo much fun. I didn't know altered art was like this too, I think this could be right up my street, especially as I like to doodle on cards. I'm also one of the fortunate who has an eye for putting colours together etc. I would love to be able to try going a bit wild, bright and funky with colour and designs. And fabric too, I love fabric, and I've started to get back into sewing and itching to try incorporating fabric into artwork, just never knew how or where to start. I definitely want to climb aboard this arty train :). Though I think I'm going to be stood at the station waving you off :(. Stupid Asperger's brain – totally new concepts take an awful lot of thinking, working out and time and often I need a lot of extra input too, for my head to get it and be able to do it for myself, my own ideas etc. even stuff, like this, that I think is my kind of thing. Now I'm all sad, I get left behind and left out of so much all my life, and not through lack of wanting or trying either, so much that I've desperately wanted to do and feel part of and never been allowed /able to. Sorry.

    Love Brenda xx

    1. Ar Brenda don't be sad, I don't know what its like to have Asperger but I have worked with children with it. Lots of trying and encouragement and celebrating every success no matter how small. So I think we should both have a go at getting on the train together, even if its only one stop! I will do the first page in my art journal and I will let you know when I have completed it. Xx

    2. Thank you for your reply. Things I have a starting point of, an idea or just something in my head then I can keep working at and trying. Like I've said before keeptrying is my middle name!!!! But when it's like this one – there is just black space in my head where the ideas, thoughts etc. should be, I've nothing to try, nothing to work on, I'm just lost. And now I suspect with this one the reason is because having Asperger's it's extremely difficult to make something into something it's not, it's one of the diagnostic tests, that I scored extremely high on (at the wrong end of the scale!!!!). So it's highly unlikely I'll ever get the ideas for doing any kind of altered art. I think that's why it's got me so sad, because I really do want to go down this route, and it's going to be so much fun and happy, but I suspect I'm never going to be able to. And I'm going to be watching Barbara and all of you on here who want to, have a go and grow with it, and I'm going to be totally left behind, shut out, because my brain won't let me try.
      I also wanted to say to you a big thank you for your kindness to me over the past several weeks xx

    3. I remember a few weeks, maybe months ago you said you felt scared to comment but after a few goes I think you now seem much more confident at it. I enjoy reading them. As for the altered art thing don't let it get you down, just keep doing the art you do now, and you never know maybe Barbara will make the steps small and clear for all of us very nervous learners! No pressure Barbara if you read this! XX

  22. Wish you would make smaller stencils for our American type cards . Don't think I have seen a 7 in card anywhere and the 6in. Oat a.pt to post or. Mail as we say. Your recent stamps are too big ,but lovely

  23. Those cardinal stamps are wonderful Barbara and like your design with the shading round the edge and the frame and the outlining of the image mat makes it look 3D too. I also like Karen's take on the stamp but I'm not sure that sort of style is for me but you never know I may give it a try if I am feeling brave! Love your latest photos. x

  24. Fabulous art Barbara. I like your Idea, will have to give it a bit of thought though. Not sure I could come up with anything near as lovely as Karen has…that was really brilliant! Enjoy the rest of your stay. xx

  25. watched this demo several times last week. enjoyed the tips. Massimo was looking at this with me and he thought the birds were ace. but then he continued to say that he wouldn't have added the yellow which looks like green behind the birds! thought i'd share his view too. personally i like the shadow. enjoy the rest of your break and those ruins look magnificent, hugs xx

  26. Hi Barbara. I managed to see this demo and it's good to see the step-by-step sequence. Lovely colouring on your bird and also like Karen's work and her spin on how to use you lovely stamps. I feel another spending spree coming on! Anne x

  27. Hello Barb, the pics of the scenery are just wonderful, it feels like we are on the trip with you, so thank you for sharing. The 2 different takes on the Cardinals, shows how versatile the stamps are. I love your version, especially the colours, almost vintage, whilst Karen's example is just so funky, mmmm, need to go dig through my stamps and see what I can come up with. Take care. Bx

  28. Hi Barbara. Love the card, the Cardinals look stunning, and then seeing Karen's card, wow, what a difference she has made to the same stamp, so clever. I look forward to seeing what you come up with. Have fun playing with the ideas in your mind : )
    Once again your photos are wonderful, I must admit I am so envious, you are having a break that me and my hubby would love, away from everything, just Mother nature to marvel at. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy : ) Take care.

  29. Beautiful pair of birds and great art and love what Karen has done also – very inspiring all round!
    Loved your photos also….not jealous…not much!!! LOL
    Much love Barb

  30. What a fab idea. I'm up for the altered art challenge – will be having a look at all my clarity stamps to see what I can use. It's great to have an excuse to stretch the boundaries. xx

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