Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Trading Time

I belong to a wonderful group; The UK Craft Forum and a few of us have decided to do an ATC Swap, which is really exciting for me as I haven't done any swaps at all with this group yet, so I'm really looking forward to it. There is no theme for this particular swap, as long as it is an ATC, we can do whatever we fancied, so I let loose my creative self and this is what I came up with...

Burlesque Troupe - The Show

In true "Maygreen Fairies" Style I chose to use one of my cheeky vintage ladies as the centre piece for my ATC, making sure to cover her modesty with a little sparkly G-String! She is sitting on a swing which hangs from the stage show name plaque. She is actually raised slightly from the ATC for a 3D type effect and her gossamer thin wings protrude from her body to give added interest. The background for the ATC is taken from an old vintage music score that I have aged even more by using distress ink. The whole piece is then framed in gold leaf pen. I am really looking forward to sending it off to trade now and can't wait to see what I receive in return.

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

PreRaphaelite Altered Art

As well as working with vintage photographs I also like to alter Pre Raphaelite images. I have enjoyed Pre Raphaelite Art for many years now, the likes of Waterhouse, Millais, Rossetti etc... have always inspired me. The images are so dreamy and whimsical, which is why I guess they appeal to me so much.
The beautiful detail in some of the paintings is amazing, take the image above for example, look how stunning her silk dress looks, it actually looks like silk, I imagine that if you reached out and touched it you'd actually feel silk!

Many of the images from this era are perfect for altering into Whimsical Creatures such as fairies, they are just crying out for a pair of gossamer thin wings to turn them into the daintiest of fairies.

A while back I visited the Tate Gallery in London and saw some of the Pre Raphaelite Art "in the flesh" and it is breath taking, most of the pieces are much larger than I realised and so, so much more beautiful than they appear in print. And to top it all off the frames that they reside in are beyond words.....stunning!! Well worth a visit!

Sunday, 26 April 2009

I Love a Challenge!

Since being involved with Altered Art I have had the privilege of joining several Online Art Groups and meeting and sharing ideas with some wonderfully talented people and along the way I have got involved with many Art Challenges and swaps, so I thought I'd share with you some of the bits and bobs I have created for such projects; Above is a book cover I put together for a round robin book challenge I was involved in, I used my favourite theme: Fairies and Cheeky Vintage Ladies!!

The above collage was for a "Candy Day" Challenge I participated in as part of the MMCA (Mixed Media Collage Artist) Group I belong to, and to my sheer delight I won this challenge, which was so wonderful as I was up against some very talented artists!

The piece above was a very different style for me and exciting to create... The challenge was to design an ATC WITHOUT using any paper medium at all and it had to be in a African Theme. So after much deliberation I came up with the above. I created the ATC base from polymer clay which I shaped to the standard size of an ATC and pre-punched with the holes that I would thread the suede cord through to hold the fabric print of my Lioness. The ATC was painted in mottled shades of brown, ochre and green. I then added lots of leather and wool trim to give a sumptuous look to the final piece, and I have to say, I was very proud of the end result, especially as it's not usually the kind of subject matter I work with..... As I've already said "I do lurrve a challenge!"

Saturday, 25 April 2009

A Budding Harry Potter

Just had to share this photo with you, of one of my twin boys at a local Fayre this morning. There was a wonderful display of Owls at the Fayre and this particular cutie caught Ethan's eye and he asked if he could have his photo take with him. Apparently this owl is known as a Pygmy Owl, the smallest Owl Breed in the World. The boys were fascinated with him and as they are fans of Harry Potter they were so excited to get so close to the real thing!
We also had a fantastic afternoon at a local Circus, it is the first time the boys have been to a Circus so everything was looked at in wonderment by them, right from the Circus Tent itself to the traditional funny clowns, tight rope walkers and various acrobats, it was so wonderful to watch the boys as they took it all in!
Hope you are all having a lovely weekend!

Friday, 24 April 2009

Trying Something New

I like to try something new every now and then, and it seems that in the last few weeks I have attempted a few new craft mediums, paper mache dolls being one (see previous post) and here to the left is my first Rag Doll. I was ever so pleased with how she turned out, I never expected my first doll to actually look like a Rag Doll LOL!!

In making this doll I learnt a few new things along the way, like tea dying muslin, I never realised how many tea bags you actually need to use to dye such a small amount of muslin!

I found the pattern cutting and sewing together of the doll relatively easy, however stuffing the doll was quite tricky, trying to get an even fill is difficult, patience is definitely needed with this part.

I really enjoyed embroidering and painting the facial features, she really came to life at this point, which then spurred me on to paint on the stockings and shoes, sand them down and then repaint to give the vintage look and lovely leathery feel, which I really like. Next came the hair, another time consuming and difficult skill to master, but once I got going it was quite addictive and I'm now looking forward to trying different hair styles on future Dolls that I'm hoping to make. With this all done the final part was to dress my little lady, this I actually found the hardest as i'm not that great when it comes to making clothes and I found this part quite a challenge, it's definitely an area I need more practice on, but all in all I was very pleased with the end result..... Although I'd love to hear what you, my talented readers think! But be gentle please!!!!

Monday, 20 April 2009

"Especially for You" Bespoke Services

I have offered Bespoke Art Services for a while now and in the past I have bottled many clients friends, family and children as "Bottled Mermaids or Fairies" LOL!! I've also produced bespoke vintage garment labels for a new Vintage Boutique as well as many special occassion cards and tags. But it was the photo above that I took earlier this year of one of my twin boys "Fairy Hunting in Sicklehatch Woods" that has caused quite a stir with my regular clients and brought me some new clients too!
After showcasing this on my site the queries came pouring in for similar pieces and I have been producing these now on a regular basis, with clients using the images I make to turn into prints on canvas, mugs, mouse mats and even cushions.
I really enjoy taking a photo and a rough idea from the client of what they would like, and then turning the image into something magical. It is so satisfying when I receive excited comments from clients once they receive their finished piece. I have been very lucky to have worked on some really special requests that at times have been very challenging, but I love every minute of it. So may I take this opportunity to say a BIG THANK YOU to all my clients, your custom is so greatly appreciated!

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Bottled Beauties

Whenever I see an attractive, empty glass jar I just have to get my hands on it and alter it. This particular jar is an empty Yankee Candle Jar that I altered for my Sister and her partner for an Easter Gift. My Sister is a big fan of candles, anything pink, so that was the basis for this piece.

I decorated the jar with an image from a collage sheet by the wonderful Lisa Kettell which I placed on a polka dot path, in pink of course. The tag (shown below) was an image of an old Postcard which I inscripted with a message to my Sister and her Partner.

Inside the bottle I placed Fairy Dusted, Strawberry Bon Bons, fit for a Sugar Plum Fairy. I then topped of the bottle with a silver flower with a gorgeous pink crystal centre.
My Lavendar Fairy Bottle started its life as a Spice Bottle! But with a little of my altering magic, and some fresh lavendar from my garden is not only looked magical but smelt wonderful too!

Thursday, 16 April 2009

The Mermaid Tea Party

The official "Mermaid Tea Party" is going on over at Faerie Enchantment Blog site, so after stopping by here for the warm up session, swim on over to Faerie Enchantment for the main event, you're guaranteed a "fintastic" time!!

Pick up one of my bottled mermaids above and take them along for the ride, I'm sure they'd appreciate the chance to meet other fishy friends or perhaps a Merman or two, over a cuppa of course.

And once the day is done, and the tea party over, watch out for mermaids by moonlight, a truly spectacular sight, not to be missed!

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Altered Art Tags

Here are a selection of my Altered Art Tags. I have created tons of these and they are always really popular with my clients. They make great decorative hang tags to display around the home, or you could jazz up a wrapped gift by adding one of my special tags, they also make great keepsakes!

If you hadn't noticed already, you certainly will have by now.... I adore working with vintage nudes, and my tag art is no exception. These beauties are enhanced by adding butterfly wings to really "pretty" them up. I like to "perch" the little ladies on top of the tags or inside the centre as if they are balancing delicately on the tag itself.

Trimming is also very important with my Art Tags, thick, feathery trim adds a real sumptuous feel to each piece.
In the Tag shown above "In The Land Where Poppies Bloom", the wings for this little lady were printed onto velvet paper to give a feathery feel to them, this was a pretty special tag and is one of my favourites.

My corset ladies tag above, is a favourite style of mine, I use this look on Greetings Cards as well as Hen Night Invitations, it is very popular.

I have lots more to show but don't want to over do it in this one post so I will save some more for a future post. Hope you've enjoyed them! And please, if you would like a special tag produced please don't hesitate to contact me.

Spirit Jumper

I am extremely excited and honoured to be a part of this wonderful group of kind, loving and talented people. I stumbled upon the Spirit Jump Blog a couple of months ago and was instantly drawn to become involved. It was started by a wonderful, courageous woman, Meaghan, a cancer survivor. Meaghan was diagnosed with end stage cancer in Feb '07 and throughout her courageous and difficult battle she had a few bright moments (as she describes them), when she would return to her hospital bed or her home and find a special gift that someone had left for her, either a card, book, fruit basket, these things momentarily lifted her spirits and subsequently gave her the inspiration to form "Spirit Jump". "So what is a Spirit Jump?" I hear you ask... well......
Spirit Jump is a project that connects the gift giver with a person battling cancer. So if you have artistic abilities or even just an extra card or spare gift in your drawer and you want to give it to a person in need then all you need to do is sign up to the Spirit Jump project and Meaghan will introduce you to a person in need whose spirits you can lift!
After a few weeks wait I am now really excited to be informed by Meaghan that I have been paired with a wonderful young lady in New York. I am in the process of creating a few gifts for her which I will be posting out to her in the next week or so. Once I've made my items I'll list them here for you to see and also keep you updated on how my first Spirit Jump went.
Please take a moment to check out Meaghans Blog, it is wonderfully inspiring.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

An Easter Gift!

Happy Easter!!!

I hope all my blog followers have a wonderful Easter Break. Please enjoy and use these wonderful vintage easter images in your art..... An Easter Gift from me to you.

Thursday, 2 April 2009

My First Shadowbox

I have been wanting to create with a Shadowbox for a while now but knowing it would be a big project I kept putting it off as I just wasn't finding the time. However, about a week ago I found myself with a whole Sunday to "play" in my studio, so out came the plain shadowbox... a blank canvas for me to work on, and my imagination took over.
The centre piece for my collage had to be a fairy of course and I had just the right little lady for the job. My hubby had brought me some collage sheets from Paper Whimsy, so I dug them out and chose the gorgeous little lady on the swing for my centre piece. Of course she needed a pair of my acetate wings to finish her off, but I wanted to alter her further, so I decided to make her a paper skirt from vintage book pages that I tore, shaped and set with diamond glaze.
I covered the whole of the shadowbox with vintage papers, scraps of music scores and a wonderful vintage article entitled "Game of the Fairies". As a volunteer at Oxfam I am very lucky to come across some amazing old magazines and books which are occasionally donated, as a volunteer I get first pickings as they come in, and at fantastic prices too, so alot of my art contains vintage papers from these books and mags and this piece is no exception.

I enjoyed creating this so much that I can't wait to work on some more. I have three more blank shadowboxes in my studio just waiting to come to life and I've already ideas buzzing around for these, I'm thinking of a vintage circus trapeze theme for the next one, so watch this space!