Saturday, March 31, 2018

Walnut border and 4 Art Stamps to Tina

You'd think that I would love the opportunity to use up $1.15 worth of stamps on mail going out of the US. I would if I had more stamps where 3 of them added up to $1.15. I always need 4 or more and that creates all kinds of problems.

The photo is silly with the mouse - but it does give me the idea of using up my leftover mouse stamp from the unusual pet series.

Anyone who is just getting started with nibs and ink should consider scrolly-doodle borders for practice. They are very forgiving and fun to do.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Exchangers Maggie and Connie (Oct ginko+peace)

Ginko leaves from Maggie . Ginkos are very popular with artists. I've mentioned before that a beautiful ginko lives next door to me. I really appreciate that I can enjoy the tree and not have to deal with the leaves. They are like leather and they usually fall off all at once - within a matter of hours. Very unusual.

And below - some nice flowers from Canadian pen pal Connie.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Two Dangling Two Beaded

I think this one already ran. There are 4 in this series. Inspired by zen-dangles on Pinterest, I did Sara's first. Then I did Tina's. I was a little more thorough in filling the lines and wasn't sure that it was an improvement. I might prefer Sara's with a little more air or space between the beads.

Then I decided to do beaded names.
I tried Rebecca's first and wished I had used a larger envelope. Then came Inta's - which might be my favorite since it is a little looser. When I do multiples, I tend to like the later ones better.

Please excuse the hodgepodge of photos. If I have time, I will return and do a better post.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Vintage Stamps and a Squirrel from Janna

It was really fun to see these three stamps on an envelope. I have all three of them in my own stash. I wonder if I can get it together and send Janna an envelope with the same stamps.....

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

December DuBosch Jubilee to Connie

This photo was hiding and I don't think it's been on the blog.

I found my Pilot Parallel pen - filled with red ink. December turned into a chaotic month - so I did not get all my vintage holiday stamps used up. Maybe this year.

I love love love those red ones with the white tree.
And the Santa....

Monday, March 26, 2018

Leaves from Janet

Janet has been an artist for years. I'm not sure what all she has done - but her leaves are superb.

Even the back of the envelope is a treat.

It would be nice to get some images of some of her other envelopes. Lots of illustration. Maybe she'll send us some scans....

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Three Hendrix Envelopes

In using up the last three Jimis, I went with a big loose script. I tried a couple different layers on two of them - and then left Janet's very simple. I can't decide if I like one better than the other.

Ooops - I already posted Chuck's.

Here is how the three looked when they left the 420.
I don't remember when Chuck's appeared....

Saturday, March 24, 2018

November Exchangers Who Make Envelopes **

Finnbadger on the top, Jeanette on the bottom.

I enjoy all the envelopes that arrive. For some reason, I'm not very chatty about the ones that are folded out of printed matter. I like them - but can't really figure out what to say. Obviously, the choices of stamps are very nice. But you don't need me to point that out.

It is nice to show some variety - and probably nice to take a break from my yammering.

Nuf said.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Sunshine Quote for Sarahi *

This quote jumped out at me (on Pinterest) but after I did the envelope I figured I should see who wrote it. Anthony J. D'Angelo. You can Google him. He seems to have also written another quote that I like: The best things in life aren't things.

While I like those two quotes - a lot of his stuff is way more optimistic than I tend to be. I recently read that pessimists actually do very well at coping with adversity due to their reduced expectations.

At first I liked the sun. Then I had second thoughts. This was one of the first envelopes I did in the Jan exchange, so it is a warm up.

I will start putting an asterisk on posts that are just so-so - and if I need to insert something into pre-scheduled posts, I'll know where to insert.

Note in real time: I write these posts 8-10 weeks ahead of time. Then a week or two before, I review them to see if I sound nutty (and sometimes take time to edit). On this one, I loved the idea of the asterisk - but I had completely forgotten about it. So - another Post-It note to clutter up the front of my if I ever look at them....

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Dear BHB: Here's the Rilke quote (off-topic)

Portrait of the BHB as a Young Man
Last fall, the BHB (BigHelpfulBrother) and I were having a conversation about stuff that he has been studying since he retired. He was always drawn to books and learning. I was drawn to pencils and paper. It took a couple decades for us to find any common ground. Technically, we didn't. We just figured out that we could laugh at our differences instead of getting all uppity.

In the end, he will have studied himself to death and I will have arted myself to death and neither of us will have any answers to any questions.

The conversation last fall was about finding answers to big questions and I remembered a Rilke quote - not the exact words, but the gist of the first line. Then, I remembered to research the quote and was pleased to find the full quote.

Here is my monumental existential question.... where the heck are my images/photos/scans/pictures stored on my computer. And you can be sure I did not say heck.

He keeps telling me the difference between photos, pictures and images.
I post the info on Post-Its on mycomputer.
It doesn't help.

Here is the quote.

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”

P.S.  Happy Birthday BHB.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Acetate Splotched from Eric

This one is cooler than cool. It is printed on acetate and beautifully constructed by our pen pal from France, Eric.

Love it. You really have to see it in person to get the full effect.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Green Bird Flourish for Jeannette

I hope Jeanette appreciates that she received one of the beloved green bird flourish stamps. All time favorites of mine. Very hard to part with them.

Very hard.

Yup. Serious deterioration in these posts.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Loaves from Clover

Clover only exchanged once or twice - so I will not have an envelope to Clover tomorrow. I really like this one. It seems like she might have used rubber stamps for the lettering.


Sunday, March 18, 2018

Frontera Bag to Eric

Rick Bayless's Frontera is one of my favorite places to eat at O'Hare. Nobody likes O'Hare. I love O'Hare. They have done all kinds of improvements. It had so many years of problems, I don't know if it will ever resolve its bad reputation.

Eric, if you are ever at O'Hare, I'll be happy to meet you out front and take you to all my favorite Chicago eateries.

I guess there are other things to see in Chicago. I should probably find a better tour guide than myself.

I loved the way the bottom of the shopping bag looks like an envelope.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Multi-Color-Multi-Balls to Connie

A second set of from-an-exchanger-to-an-exchanger.

Using up sports stamps.

This style is becoming my go-to style when I'm struggling with ideas. Please let me know if I am overdoing it. It may look quick and easy - but I actually spend a lot of time with the logistics of picking up each color and not having the same color appear too close to itself.

I've been posting a lot of blog posts today and wonder if my blurbs start to deteriorate. I won't know until March when they pop up and I cringe at myself.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Vintage Pattern from Connie

This one has a very cool texture. Whatever Connie used to layer and hold the paper together dried really stiff. It doesn't feel like paper any more but has nice texture. Plus I love that assortment of stamps.

Yesterday, Chuck sent me an image of his Hendrix envelope - with the additional color. It's so much better than the version you saw yesterday - so you may scroll down and see the improved version - if you have a ridiculous amount of time to kill....or are looking for ways to procrastinate.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Hendrix to Chuck

Here's an idea. I could alternate between envelopes from people and envelopes to people. Yesterday was one from Chuck and today is one to Chuck. I know I added  a some more color to this one. Not sure if I have another picture of it.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Horn of Plenty from Chuck

I pondered putting all the Thanksgiving envelopes in November. Then, I decided I need to fill the calendar in order. Jumping around gets me so confused and we need me to stay a little less confused.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Crayons and Volleyball to Alison

Not quite as absurd as the snowflakes and soccer ball - but done on the day I was using up those stamps.

I guess I made pencils as well as crayons. After it was done, I realized that crayon themed items really need to have all the colors in the box. Nobody has multiples of just 3 colors. Maybe this one is just as absurd as the other one.....

Monday, March 12, 2018

Little People from CathyO

I love the little people. They might be stickers from Aiko Fukawa. When this blog pops up, I will take some time to search that artist.

Cathy's been practicing her penmanship. Very pretty.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Big 5 to Bug

Another orphan stamp.

I mimicked the 5 when I made the B. I also added more detail but did not rescan it. It needed a little more dark on the G.

These artist's stamps are wonderful for pulling ideas. I get picky about the colors, but then I remind myself to relax and be happy with close-enough.

I can't remember what color I used for her street address.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

November Exchange Envelopes

The top one is from Carroll and is made out of a page from a magazine. Very curious image - no clues on the flip side about what's happening.

The leaf below is from Kathie McC. It is an actual leaf with several layers of something like gel medium. She sent it inside a regular envelope because she was afraid the leaf could not handle the PO machines. Good idea - and would probably work with any kind of plant material - petals?

Friday, March 9, 2018

Flower border for Faye

There are several envelopes on Pinterest with flowers like this. They all look way better than mine. I need to slow down and figure out why mine are so clunky. They are not quite wretched - but I know they could be better. I really struggled with finding a stamp for this one and then forgot to rescan it....

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Absurd combo for KateR

I tried taking a stack of envelopes and some pens on a trip. These snowflakes were done during a bit of turbulence. I finally gave up. When I got home, I pondered pitching it - but I was on a mission to use up all the sporty stamps and somehow snowflakes, soccer balls, and asterisks seemed like a fun (absurd) combination - so I had to guess who would enjoy something absurd. Or, I might have chosen a name that was going to fit nicely.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Basketballs to Janet

Not spectacular - just fun and using up orphans. The street address will have to be super tiny to fit between the last name and the town.

This idea would work with any number of stamps. There are tons of details on stamps that can be scattered around on the letters.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

From Britney - Constellations

Britney's first envelope for an exchange was (is) stellar. It arrived in November. I met her in class in the fall and she is a serious over achiever.

I added little white squares with the zip code on it - to show her where I would have put the zip code. Since she did such a nice job of centering - I thought the 5 hanging off to the left was a little distracting.

She already had really nice lettering skills when she arrived as we can see in my address and her lettering on the back. I think I remember her telling me that her studies had included something in the area of architecture - maybe landscape architecture. Forgive me Britney if I am way off on this. I'm old and forgetful. You are young - and have a bright future ahead of you, if you decide to stick with the calligraphy.....feel free to correct the info in the comment section.

Here is how her envelope looks without my 2-cents. And below is the flip side.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Jan Exch to Troy - Baseball

This one was an obvious idea. The January exchange was -for me- one more stage in the effort to clear out excess stamps. Having only one or two of a particular stamp left is not the best way for me to come up with good ideas. I do much better when I have at least 10 opportunities to develop an idea.

I had penciled the baseballs without a good idea of how to finish them. If I had it to do over, I would have convinced my uber-lazy self to get out of my chair and take the two steps to the drawer where I have circle templates.

Obviously I have to add the address - maybe I will think of something to make this a bit better.

And to be even more honest about how lazy I am - my chair is on wheels - so I could just roll over there. Too bad there is not an olympics of lazy - I'm sure I could medal.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Lost Postcard Project

On December 10th, there was a comment left on one of my blog entries. Clicking on the person who left the comment brought me to this postcard and her Lost Postcard Project.

It's a very fun project and if you are in need of a lead for surfing - head on over to her blog and read all about it.

I love art done by future adults. Especially those who love white space as much as I do.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Volleyball and Hearts to Maggie

January exchange envelopes were a hodgepodge of using up orphan stamps and pondering valentines. I never get things organized to post some good ideas for holidays - right before the holiday. Any doo-dad could be sprinkled along one end of an envelope and there are tons of ways to make borders for stamps. I'm pretty sure I added more hearts in tiny black on this one.

Friday, March 2, 2018

Jackie Landscape No. 6

This is the last in the series. I hope it inspires some of you to do something similar. I hope I remember to click on my own note-to-self and give this arrangement a try.

I wonder what would happen if we all used the same envelope for inspiration on the next exchange. Good idea? or Bad idea? Obviously, we would make it optional.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

March Exchange Sign-up - Dangles

My January envelopes in progress.
Sign-up for the March Exchange starts today and ends on March 4th.
Regular exchangers: I need all your info typed out - please do not send me an email that says "I'm in." I have been making this request down in the body of the sign up posts - but I don't think regular exchangers are reading the entire post because they have read it so many times. I know I wouldn't keep reading each month.
But, it is too hard fo me to dig through my old files to find your addresses. Thanks

Beginners are welcome. You will get a list of 4-5-or-6 people to send envelopes to. One of them may be out of the US and international mail requires $1.15 postage.

No theme, any medium, digital is welcome. Collage is welcome. Enclosures are optional. This is an envelope exchange.
Please put your return address on the back and write OPEN if there is an enclosure or EMPTY if there is none. It is also nice to write March.PTEX on the back of the envelope for those who may participate in more than one exchange. PTEX stands for Pushing the Envelopes Exchange.

To sign up -even if you have signed up many times- I need the following information typed.
Your email

Non-US exchangers - please follow the format that your postal system prefers.

Email the above information to me at;
jmwilson411 (at) yahoo (dot) com

If you are having a birthday in March, let me know. Exchangers have the option to send a birthday themed envelope.
If you are agreeable to be on two lists, let me know. It is nice to have a few people willing to do ten envelopes in order to make all the lists come out even.

Deadline to sign up is March 4. Lists will be sent on Mar 5th or 6th. Please get your envelopes in the mail by March 31st. If you are going to be late, please email the people on your list so that we know your envelope will be late.

Any questions - email me.