Wednesday, March 31, 2010

An Owl of a Different Color

Today I have the distinct pleasure of guest blogging at Nellie Mae's blog,  This Little Blog of Mine.  I've never guest blogged before! (I hope that we get the timing down correctly, but, if not, please return later to check out both blogs.)  My blog post is a celebration of color!  I made matching art journal pages - one in her color palette (posted HERE) and one in my color palette (posted above).  It's interesting how you can get a totally different feel from two pages just by switching color palettes.  Both use the same three stencils and rubber stamp, although I did vary the quotes. I hope you enjoy these owls of a different color.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Spring Art Journal Page & Housekeeping

Recently I blogged about the signs of spring around my house . . . poppies and baseball, mostly.  Yesterday I turned those ideas into an art journal page.  The journaling is the opening lyric to a baseball song called "Centerfield." It reads "Well, beat the drum and hold the phone - the sun came out today!  We're born again , there's new grass on the field. . ."  You can check out a video featuring the song at this link.  It meets the call for Art Journal Friday at The Scrappy Tree and just makes me happy because of the color and content.

Something else that makes me happy?  Happy mail from amazing, thoughtful blogging friends.  Mel who lives in the UK often posts pictures of the food she eats.  Recently, she posted about Mars bars, and I went on and on in my comment about how we adore Mars bars but are unable to get them here in the states.  (We have a pale imitation in Milky Way bars here).  On Monday, totally out of the blue, I received a Royal Mail package stuffed full with Mars bars from Mel! Simply amazing - it made my day! Heck, it made my week!!!  I haven't told the kids because I'm planning to surprise them with the treats in their Easter baskets on Sunday.  Thanks Mel!!! You're the best!

Finally, if you're looking for my review of March classes, I had to put the post off until Saturday because Shimelle's class is continuing through Friday.  Look for the review on Saturday.  In the meantime, take a few minutes to respond to my queries about blogging, here, if you get a chance, and please come back tomorrow to check out my latest adventure.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Let's Talk Blogs & Blogging (with an incentive)

I've been thinking about my blog and blogging lately, and I've got some questions for you (as a blogger and/or blog reader).  I'd love your answers to these.  I'll gather them together and post a summary early next week, along with my thoughts on these questions:
1. Frequency:  how often do you blog?  How often do you read other blogs? Do you read them at a certain time each day? Is it important to you, as a reader, that your favorite bloggers post every day?
2.  Format:  do you change the format or look of your blog often (or ever)?  As a reader, do you like seeing changes or not?
3. Live or loaded for the future? For you bloggers, do you usually publish a post right after you've written it or do you write one or more to post at a future date?
4. With regard to my blog, I've been blogging a mix of scrapbook pages, cards, photography and altered art.  Is the mix about right for you as a reader or would you prefer something different?
5.  Do you have any interest in doing a collaborative blog project with me, like a blog hop or guest blogging or a swap?  If so, let me know which ones.

Here's the incentive:  the artwork featured today is a card I made using a color copy of one of my all-time favorite collages.  It's called "Wings," and I think of it as a signature piece because features a lot of my signature style.  It's featured everyday on my blog.  On Monday, April 5, 2010, I'll randomly select a name from those who have posted a response to these questions and send them the card.

And don't forget to stop by Thursday for something special and bit different!

Thanks for your input!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Signs of Spring and a Story

Spring has definitely sprung here in northern California! I've noticed an abundance of California golden poppies - the state flower and one of my favorites.  And the other night, I actually settled down in front of the television to watch a San Francisco Giants game with my boy!  
He's also settling into his first year of High School baseball . . . another sign of spring.  He had "lost" his spot as starting shortstop during the preseason because  he was acting a bit lazy in practice and he was not hitting well.  Even though he was the starting pitcher for the league opener, he yearned to get back to the infield.  When the other short stop made a few errors, the coach gave him a chance to "earn" his spot back.  His fielding has been impeccable (it always has been his strength) and he's had a great on-base percentage.  The other day, he was all smiles when he reported that his coach had said, "You do know that you stole your spot back and ran away with it, don't you?"

Has spring sprung where you are?  What signs of spring do you see?

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Stuck on Scrapbooking

One of the prompts for Shimelle's Something from (almost) Nothing class this week was to use stickers on a layout.  I have been working on getting rid of stickers for a while, and I think I would be content to never buy another sticker in my entire life.  This was a really nice realization for me.  I hope I can stick to it (so to speak).
The only exception are stickers for layouts of kids' activities.  To me, these still tend to work. I also have a bunch of alphabet stickers. Here's three layouts I did - all for Clara's album.  My favorite is the one up top of Clara participating in Jr. Guards at the beach.  During the summer, she's there everyday from 10-3.  
What's your current view on stickers in scrapbooking?
I've got some fun things planned for my blog this week:
Monday - a spring card and more insight into my life
Tuesday - a call for feedback and a chance to win a prize
Wednesday - March Class Review
Thursday - a cool surprise, featuring something I've never done before!

My Valentine Swap Project - Bee Mine Bookmark

Yesterday I featured the wonderful Valentine projects I received from my altered art group.  Here's what I made to swap - Bee Mine Bookmarks.  They are shaped like a little house and slide onto the corner of a book.  I have three pictured here so you can see what they look like on the book corner, from the front when not attached and from the back.  They're a lot of fun to make and very simple.
To make these, you start with a 3"x3" square.  Make a mark  midway on each side (1.5" from the top and bottom).  Use a straight edge and bone folder to score between the marks.  Fold the corners in to form a peak.  
Next, decide what type of decorative triangle you want to attach to the front of the bookmark.  Some good choices are a nicely textured paper (like the blue one below), patterned paper, or plain paper on which you stamp.  For the Valentine bookmark, I used applied alcohol inks onto glossy paper to create a faux marble look.  The instructions for that can be found on Tim Holtz's blog here.  The triangle is 2"x2"x3".  One you have it cut out, simply adhere it on top of the folded corners.
That's it.  Let me know if you make any.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Because it's Never Too Late for Love

My local altered art group did a Valentine's Day Swap, and I just recently received my goodies. Here's a sampling of some of my favorites.  Aren't they cool?  I love the chicken in the upper left hand corner - it's made of fabric and has great stitching on it and twigs for legs!  Next to it is a "cootie catcher" that is stamped with all kinds of hearts.  I loved this idea, and I had never seen it before.  Continuing counter-clockwise, there's a cool altered valentine, a fantastic art doll and two lovely canvases.  The final piece is another one of my favorites - an altered matchbox in beautiful , subtle colors.  The quote inside says "only from the heart can you touch the sky."  Really beautiful.  Remember, you can click on the image to enlarge the image and see details.
What did I offer for trade?  Well, I haven't handed mine off yet.  And I'm not sure I should spoil the surprise, but if you check in this weekend, I'll spill the beans.  I'll even post a mini-tutorial for my very simple project.
Happy (belated) Valentine's Day and a huge thanks to my Coastside Mixed Media Group.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Fun with Page Protectors

I've enjoyed using up some items from my stash in Shimelle's Something from (almost) Nothing class.  I have to admit that I was a little skeptical about the prompt to use page protectors because I don't think of them as something I need to use up. I'm always happy to have them.
But, I changed my mind when I found a stash of 3-hole punched page protectors with various size pockets.  Not what I normally use at all.  Not even sure where I got them! They actually are something in my stash I'm happy to use up.  So, I cut out one of the pockets from a page protector, closed up the sides with artist tape, and used it to hold this adorable photo strip that DH and DS took at a music festival photo booth.  I love how it turned out, and I'll be creating many more pockets to use on my layouts!  
All materials from Club Scrap. This layout also meets the challenge at ScrapWeekly!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Putting the journaling in Art Journaling

Time is Flying (art journal page)
I decided to go ahead and sign up for Dina Wakley's Art Journal 101 class.  Although the class has been available to take in archived form for a while, this is the first time in over a year that she has offered it "live."  I hemmed and hawed because I've been busy with Shimelle's Something from (Almost) Nothing class and catching up on my scrapbooking.  I'm realizing it's hard for me to do more than one class at a time. 
But I signed up, and I'm glad I did! The class is really offering me a lot of insight already into the "journaling" side of art journaling.  Some of the prompts have brought up some strong emotion in me and made me realize, as I say in this page, "I worry that time is flying away from me."  If this is any indication of where the class will take me, I know it's going to be another winner!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Checking in on Intentions & Word of the Year

Horizon in Hand (art journal page)
I hate to be the one to tell you,  but 2010 is almost 1/4 of the way done! I thought it was time to think a little about my word of the year (horizon) and the intentions I created about it.  You can see an art journal page about my word, here, and my intentions, here.  After reviewing them, I decided that I needed to get a handle on a few things!  I've been doing lots of art, but need to do better about getting into a healthy regiment.  Doing okay on my work-work, parenting and spiritual stuff.  Could put a bit more time into being a good sibling, more attentive spouse and planning a few trips. 
Today's art journal page captures the idea of getting a handle on things, I think.  I used soft pastels for the background and a new stamp I got from Invoke Arts.
Have you thought about your word of the year lately? How are you doing on your intentions?

Sunday, March 21, 2010

What's Next?

A couple of years ago, I found this terrific glass washboard at my local antique store.  Early on, I decided that I wanted to add these shells and seaglass pairs.  The pairs speak to me of the "organic" principles which motivated Frank Lloyd Wright. I love how the manmade and natural reflect each other.  Yesterday, I finally attached them.  But now I'm stuck on what to do next.  I'm working on the idea of making it into a sign that says Gallo Organico for my studio (no  matter that I don't have a studio currently - I know I will someday!).
One idea I have is to go with Chipboard letters, "G" and "O" for Gallo Organico.  I could paint them someway.  I think I might add a wooden scroll cut rooster.

I have also thought about using smaller chipboard letters to spell out Gallo Organico, although I would have to hyphenate Organico.

I could also put the scroll cut rooster up top. I also considered painting directly on the glass, but since it's a washboard, it's rippled.  I think it would be too difficult to paint well.  Definitely interested in any and all suggestions.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Bit of Awesomeness from Ammi

I am blessed to be part of a mixed media artist group that gets together about once a month.  In December, we did  a Secret Santa art doll exchange.  I gave my friend Anne a version of this doll.  I was receiving from my friend Ammi, who was unable to attend in December.  I was sick and missed January and February.  I missed March because I was being a Proud Mom, as I blogged about yesterday.
So, my friend Sally delivered Ammi's present for me yesterday.  Imagine my delight when I opened up the wrapping and found this!!! Isn't he amazing?!? I call him the Urban Nature Man and had good fun photographing him yesterday in my lemon tree.  Some of the fabulous details are his joints, the painting, the way he's attached into his box, and his, umm, man parts. You really should click on the picture at left to see these details.  I love him!
Thanks Ammi!

Proud Mom Moment (I love this photo)

My blog is mostly about my art, with just a little life thrown in, and I'm happy with that.  I have noticed though that some of my favorite blog posts that I read on other blogs are the posts that give me a glimpse into the blogger's real life.  So, I'm trying a bit of that today.  Let me know what you think.
The photo up top is from Wednesday.  In the morning, I did three loads of laundry, scrapped these tone-on-tone cardstock layouts for the Shimelle class, picked up the house a little and watched reruns of The West Wing on Bravo. At 1:30, I headed off to drive DS Henry to his baseball game.  Proud Mom moment #1: He was the starting pitcher for their first league game. After the game, we headed off to the High School Library for the Awards Ceremony for the High School soccer team.  Proud Mom moment #2: He was named MVP for the Offense (also named to First Team All League). Today's picture is of Henry with Andres (Defensive MVP) and Rual (Most Improved). I love the fact that he's at the soccer awards in his baseball uniform.  I also love the fact that, if you look closely, you can see that he's wearing his favorite Obama t-shirt under his jersey.  Look closer still, and over his right eye, you'll see a scab.  He got hit in the head with a baseball last week pitching batting practice at lunchtime . . . he was back on the mound for the last preseason scrimmage the following day.  The boy's definitely a gamer.
Here's some photo links that will give you a peek into my life outside the blogosphere - things I find appealing because of who I am IRL.
First, a great photo site called Caliber that Nancy of SquirrelyArt turned me on to.  It's primarily photos of San Francisco, and they're all awesome. IRL, I live 20 miles south off San Francisco, so they all speak to me.
Second, this slideshow of hilarious help wanted signs from the Huffington Post.  I think you may know that IRL I'm a law professor who specializes in labor and employment law.  So, this sort of think really appeals to me.
Finally, here's a couple of pictures of my office.  I teach at the University of San Francisco School of Law, and I hang my art work (the middle two pieces) in my office!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Working outside my box

Using a prompt from Shimelle's Something from Almost Nothing class, I attached ribbon to a piece of chipboard to make the embellishment on this card.  It's sooooo outside my box.  I admire this type of embellishment on other's people work all the time, and I was pleased by how easy it was to make.  But it still doesn't feel like me.  The color scheme is one of my favorites, and the sentiment is definitely "me."  But still. . . I guess I don't get pulled outside my "box" very often.  It feels funny out here.
p.s. for altered house fans, be sure to check out this post at Deb's blog to see what she did with the house front package I sent her.

Tone on Tone Layouts

Here's a couple more layouts of some of my favorite photos that I prepared in Shimelle's class, Something from (almost) Nothing.  The prompt was about using cardstock scraps, and one of her sketches involved a tone-on-tone white layout.  I went with tone-on-tone black to fit the overall color scheme of my album.
I'm very happy with how they turned out.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I love Ireland and all things Irish.  We've been lucky enough to visit there twice.  Both times we stayed for about a month during the summer while I taught in a summer abroad program.  We stayed in Dublin on the campus of Trinity College and then went on wonderful excursions during the weekends. We had wonderful hosts and played tons of soccer on the beautiful pitch in front of the Pav (or Pavilion).  We also saw lots of great theater and enjoyed watching TV in the pubs. But my very favorite memory of Ireland was the day we biked around the Aran Islands.
So, to celebrate my love of all things Irish, I made a few St. Patrick's Day cards. I have a huge assortment of Celtic stamps, but only used one on these cards.  I found the shamrock eyelets in my metal stash last week and became determined to use them up. Sunflowers and Dragonflies is also running an Irish challenge, and you may want to check that out here.
Feel free to share your favorite Irish memory.  Cheers!

Last Dance (Art Journal Page)

On Sunday, I got together with some friends to scrap. I worked on DD's "school days album," which catalogs her activities in elementary school.  Even though she's in 6th grade, I was working on her 4th grade year and came across pictures from her dance show show that year.  They brought up such strong emotions, that I decided to do an art journal page about them.  For those in the shimelle class, notice my nicely pleated ribbon! You can click on the page to enlarge it and examine it.  I drybrushed gesso over the photograph.
Here's the journaling:
"Fading memories . . .
They say that scrapbookers are really good at scrapping the first . . . the first tooth, the first step. But we often miss the last . . . the last time you read your child to sleep or the last time you walk them to the bus.  When I scrapped this ballet show two years ago, I didn't realize it was the end of dance.
But now I do, and it makes me a little sad.  Basketball and swimming are fine, but I miss this . . .
The End . . ."

Monday, March 15, 2010

More Patterned Paper Scraps

In Shimelle's Something from (Almost) Nothing class, the second prompt on patterned paper suggested punching out shapes of patterned paper to use on a layout.  I knew I had this Christmas tree farm layout to put together and had been having trouble figuring out what to do.  So, before bed the other night, I grabbed a few scraps of xmas patterned paper and punched circles and xmas trees.  The next morning I put this layout together in less than half an hour and am shocked by how much I love it. It's simple but somehow still works for me! After having perused all the lovely layouts in the class forum and participant's blogs, it occurred to me that this prompt was almost as much about dusting off punches as it was about using patterned paper! I'm not that punch of a punch girl.   I have some basic geometrics: circles, squares, a tag, and a scallop. Then just a few favorites in my stash - a leaf; a butterfly; an xmas tree; maybe a few more.  What about you? Do you have punches?  Do you use them much?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Saints and Angels (Art Journal Page)

I've been continuing to work on art journal pages about religion and spirituality.  Seemed appropriate for a Sunday post.  I really liked this one about angels and saints.  The background on the tags is made with Tim Holtz' technique for ink drops with distress reinkers.  I actually drew the cross with pastels.  This is the first page in my new brand/style of art journal, and I really like it.  I made one other art journal page which I liked but is too personal to share.  The third page started out really well and then I messed it all up, so I covered half of it with gesso and will return to it later.
This page is called "Saints and Angels." My favorite Saint is St. Anthony (patron Saint of lost things).  I pray to him like crazy when I lose anything important, and he always seems to come through. I have a gold cross that I bought in Dublin a dozen years ago and wear everyday.  I lost it when I was sick (on the day I went in for a chest x-ray).  I looked in my purse, my pockets, my bed, everywhere, but couldn't find it. Then last week, it showed up in the bottom of my purse.  I was thrilled!  So, I decided to sketch my cross on this page as a tribute to St. Anthony.  I also really like The Virgin of Guadalupe (that's the stamped image), so included her, too.  Do you have any favorite or patron saints?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Celebrate Life - A New Mini Album

For Shimelle's new class, Something from (almost) Nothing, I decided to follow the prompts and make a mini album with some of my favorite photos.  I'm taking the journaling from my blog posts about the pictures, so they're going together fast.  The cover (left, top) uses the first prompt and sketch about creating with metal.  The next two pages come from her lesson on using patterned paper scraps.  I especially like the one with the little paper flags.  I had the 6x6 album kit in my stash, and my goal is to create the whole album only using my stash.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

My Vintage Houses are Home!

I have been involved in an altered row house swap, described in detail in this post.  The swap ended this week when my houses arrived home.  I love what all my swap partners did with the houses I sent out. I did the small house that is on the second level and the grey one in the middle. Other artists created the other ones for me. As always, you can click on the picture to enlarge it and really see the details. I'm trying to decide how to display them.  I'm think of mounting them onto these two canvases like this and then putting a title up top "Luna Family" and the years or something, and then attaching the two canvases to each other with hinges. I like the story they tell arranged this way because they tell a story chronologically.  My great grandmother is at the far left; my grandmother in the next one and then my mom (at 16 and in nursing school are in the middle). That's actually my aunt's wedding photo (not my mom's), but I think it still follows.
Do you think this display will work?  Any other ideas?

More Metal

I'm continuing to dig through my metal stash as part of Shimelle's class "Something for Almost Nothing." I feel a little bit like I'm playing scrabble and trying to get as many points as possible,but I'm thrilled that I used 15 pieces of metal on this layout, including some truly ancient supplies.  The metal circle letters and metal rimmed tags have been with me for years! The metal faces and phrases were an RAK.  I even used a library pocket!
And here's the companion layout, with 13 pieces of metal!  Thanks for looking.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

4-in-1 Layout

I seem to have found my scrapbooking mojo again!  This layout has been percolating in my head for a while.  It's about the trip to San Francisco I took with the kids during the holidays.  I was inspired by four different challenges in completing this layout:

  • for Shimelle's Something for Nothing class, I dug out and used a lot of metal embellishments - 13 brads and 8 metal framers;
  • for Scrap Weekly, I wrote my journaling first to make sure that I told the complete story without running out of room (you can see the original challenge prompt here);
  • for the Building Pages class, I worked on a lesson about using circles; and
  • for a Club Scrap challenge, I used their December kit called Ornamental.
I really like the layout and love completing challenges!  It looks a lot better in real life or even if you click to enlarge it.

Altered Slide Mailers

I'm in a swap where we are altering "slide mailers."  They are small cardboard holders originally developed to mail microscope slides without breakage.  I used Tim Holtz's alcohol ink agate technique to create the background for the cover and created this slide mailer called "moon garden."  I thought it was pretty cool and was all set to mail it off, until I received mine from my swap partner.  It was so amazing that it blew me away!  Here's a picture of the outside and the inside:

So, I went back to the drawing board and created a double mailer called "captured muse."  The idea is that I have captured the muse for my swap partner so that she will know where to find it anytime she seems to have lost her creative mojo.  Here's the front and inside.  I used Tim's shabby chic technique for the background on the inside:

But I cracked the glass on the captured muse when putting on the finishing touches.  And I'm beginning to think my original one might be better.  Please help me!  Should I send my swap partner "Moon Garden" or "Captured Muse"? Which would you prefer to receive?  Have you ever altered a slide mailer?  It's fun!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Scrapbook Tuesday

Jacky is hosting a sketch challenge at her blog, and I decided to use it as the springboard for this layout of DD and the basketball portrait I took of her.  I love this picture of her - the smile is very sweet and I love how the fingers of her right hand are arranged - they're very her.  I have a love-hate relationship with the felt fusion embellishment line (they're the basketballs). I like the look, and it was pretty easy to use in this soccer layout, but sometimes (like in this one) it sticks to itself and is maddening!  Do you have a love-hate relationship with any embellishment lines?
And while I'm talking about Jacky, check out this really cute bday card she sent me. Jacky's style is very different from mine, but I love what she makes.  When I was much younger, I used to love to wear overalls, so this card reminds me of a younger version of me. Thanks Jacky!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

I love this photo

"Mom, would you stop taking my picture?"
No, son, I won't.
Because occasionally I take a picture that makes my heart skip a beat when I look at it. Like the team photo for your high school baseball team below. It's not a great technical photo, but when I look at it, I see you and all those boys you've been playing ball with since you were five years old. And my heart skips a beat because suddenly, you look like young men.  And it hits me that you're really in High School. Really. And you're all growing up.  And I love you so much and want so much for you to grow up to be a good man and to be happy.
That's what happens sometimes when I look at the photos I take of you. So, no, I'm not going to stop taking your picture any time soon.
Deal with it.

A Review of Tim Holtz Publications (part 2)

Yesterday, I reviewed Tim Holtz' new book A Compendium of Curiosities.  Today, I wanted to review some of his other publications.  I've grouped these into three categories:  freebies on his blog and webite; books by Design Originals; and videos by Page Sage.

Freebies on his blog and webite:  Tim Holtz is one of the most generous artists out there.  He publishes, free of charge on the internet, a huge number of tutorials on how to make wonderful projects and how to use his products.  In addition to the 36 Tags of Christmas, which I linked to yesterday, he occasionally posts other tag projects, like this Easter tag tutorial.  These tutorials include step-by-step illustrated instructions. They aren't tagged in any special way on his blog, so you may have to hunt them up for yourself.  In addition, he has 18 video demonstrations posted on his website, covering products and techniques.

Books by Design Originals:  Tim published two books with Design Originals called Distressables (2005) and Distressables 2 (2006).  These short (50 page) books are dense and jam-packed with ideas.  They are not as reader-friendly as Curiosities because they cover many techniques that I would call intermediate to advanced and which assume some amount of crafting knowledge.  They each cover about 15 completed projects, and most projects include several variations.  The products used and projects covered have a much greater variety than Curiosities. . . . things ranging from beeswax collage to altered wooden blocks (in Destressables 2) and tins to minialbums (in Distressables).  They often use older product lines designed by Tim for Design Originals or other producers.  I call these books dense because they are almost like textbooks for many of his classes or for classes which could be taught. In fact, the three pieces of jewelery pictured up top are things I made in a class with Tim. The instructions for each one is in one of these books, but I never realized that until after reviewing the books again.  Overall, the books provide the foundation to make a ton of projects and are a great way to expand your repertoire of altered art a la Tim, but I don't think they are for the meek of art. 

Videos by Page Sage:  Tim has published two videos with Page Sage. . . An Altered Journey (2004) and The Journey Continues (2006).  Each one is about two hours long and is divided into different projects (called Journeys).  Each project lesson starts with a list of supplies needed and then shows how to make it.  There is also a gallery and some extras.   An Altered Journey covers some basic techniques like distressing, brushless watercolor and alcohol ink agates but also some cool, more advanced techniques like faux batik, an altered domino mini book (yes, it's tiny!), and projects with polymer clay and UTEE.  The Journey Continues includes some more advanced projects for distressing, using UTEE, polymer clay, alcohol inks, beeswax and cut-n-dry felt.  The techniques are more adventurous than those found in Curiosities but are clearly illustrated (so easier to follow than the Distressables books) and do result in completed projects.   I"m anxious to go back and watch the videos again, now that I own a melting pot and my skills have gotten more advanced.

After having done this two-part review, it seems to me that Curiosities and Tim's website/blog are a great place for beginners to start and the Altered Journeys and Distressables are great next-steps for the artist who wants to continue to explore various altered techniques and projects.  I'd love to hear feedback from anyone else who owns and has used the Distressables books or Altered Journeys videos.