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Welcome

Welcome! Artfully Musing is a blog dedicated to sharing art and the techniques and products used. I'll be showcasing collage, altered and mixed media art as well as miniature. I hope you'll check back often and are inspired. Thanks for visiting! Laura

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Alice in Wonderland Tunnel Book - New Image Set - Video Tutorial

This is the second in a series of tunnel book video tutorials with this one focusing on Alice in Wonderland.  For this project, I created a large new digital image set titled "Strange People" which includes images from my other Strange People collage sheets plus a ton more.  You can see some of them framed as pictures on the wall below, I thought they fit right in with the story's strange and whimsical characters.
If you aren’t familiar with tunnel books, they are made by connecting a series of pages with the first page having the largest hole and each subsequent page having a smaller hole than the one before, giving the book a tunnel effect.   Adding to the tunnel effect are the images on each page that slightly protrude into the openings.  The way I designed this book, the tunnel effect works no matter which direction you look (from the front to the back of from the back to the front). 
I constructed the book using a 6x6 ArchTunnel Book that contains 6 pages which gave me lots of surfaces to embellish.
This is an image-intensive project wherein I used lots of collage sheets and digital image sets.
My approach was to illustrate several of my favorite Alice in Wonderland scenes although I couldn’t resist adding Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dum and Humpty Dumpty from Through the Looking Glass.
In the video tutorial, I’ll walk you through how I assembled the book and how to make the mini Alice book on the cover.

NEW DIGITAL IMAGE SET
This set is packed with all kinds of strange anthropomorphic people included are; 34 animal characters, 20 skeleton characters, 20 vegetable, and fruit people and 8 moon men for a total of 82 images.  You can find some of these images on the Strange People, Strange People #2 and Halloween Carnival collage sheets.
VIDEO TUTORIAL


FREE IMAGES
Feel free to download these images and use them in your artwork.  To save the images, right-click on the image and select the “Save image as” option on the dropdown menu.

OTHER TUNNEL BOOK VIDEO TUTORIALS


DETAIL SUPPLY LIST

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Steampunk Tunnel Book - Video Tutorial - New Collage Sheets & Digital Image Sets

This is the first in a series of tunnel books with this one being one of my favorite themes, which is Steampunk (video tutorial further down in the post).  If you aren't familiar with tunnel books, they are made by connecting a series of pages with the first page having the largest hole and each subsequent page having a smaller hole than the one before, giving the book a tunnel effect.  Adding to the tunnel effect are the images on each page that slightly protrude into the openings.  The way I designed this book, the tunnel effect works no matter which direction you look (from the front to the back or from the back to the front).
I constructed the book using a new 8x8Arch Tunnel Book that contains 6 pages which gave me a lot of surface area to embellish.
To accompany the tunnel book pages is a Wrought Iron Window Grate which is sized to fit the second window in the tunnel book which I embellished with lots of metal gears, gears and key made from a mold, a chain and, a brass handle.  I used small hinges to attach the window to the book so that you could open and close the window.
The inspiration for the project was the gorgeous steampunk-themed paper pack titled “Voyages Fantastique".  Not only are the designs on the double-sided papers beautiful but many are loaded with images that I cut out and collaged onto the pages.
I addition to using the paper pad, I used images from some of my 6 new collage sheets and 2 new download sets (see the details further down in the post)  plus some of my older steampunk-themed collage sheets.
In addition to paper balloon images from my collage sheet and the ones I cut out of the paper pad I also used two balloon silicone molds.




On the back of the book, I’ve used a steampunk-themed silicone mold packed with clocks and gears as the centerpiece.  In addition to paint, I dressed it up with metal gears, and gears made from the previously mentioned silicone mold. 

NEW COLLAGE SHEETS & DIGI IMAGE SETS

This sheet contains a combination of men and women dressed in steampunk fashions at a 1:12 scale.  This sheet works well with my other Steampunk collage sheets; Voyages Extraordinaire series, Time Machine, Steampunk Machines and Steampunk Explorers Study.
This sheet contains 6 steampunk doors and hatches which work well with collage & altered projects as well as 1:12 scale miniatures.  The images are scaled to work with the 8x8 chipboard tunnel book and works well with my other Steampunk collage sheets; Voyages Extraordinaire series, Time Machine, Steampunk Machines, and Steampunk Explorers Study.
Keyhole Collage Sheet
This sheet contains 21 unique keyholes with 2 sizes of each keyhole and 3 sizes of some of the keyholes which work well with larger projects.

Door Backplates, Knobs & Knockers  Collage Sheet
This sheet contains 15 door backplates, 5 door knockers, and 13 knobs.  The knobs are sized to work with the door backplates and all would work well with larger projects.

This sheet contains 24 unique hinges with two of each hinge, which works well with larger projects.
This sheet is packed with mini versions of hardware that would work well for 1:12 miniature project as well as other projects.  These images are also found in the Keyhole, Hinges, Door Backplates, Knobs & Knockers collage sheets plus more.

Image set contains the steampunk doors which are found on the Steampunk Doors collage sheet as well as more for a total of 12 doors and hatches.   The images are scaled to work with the 8x8 chipboard tunnel book and works well with my other Steampunk collage sheets; Voyages Extraordinaire series, Time Machine, Steampunk Machines, and Steampunk Explorers Study.
Image set contains the steampunk doors which are found on the Steampunk Doors collage sheet as well as more for a total of 12 doors and hatches.   The images are scaled to work with the 8x8 chipboard tunnel book and works well with my other Steampunk collage sheets; Voyages Extraordinaire series, Time Machine, Steampunk Machines, and Steampunk Explorers Study.

VIDEO TUTORIAL


OTHER TUNNEL BOOK VIDEO TUTORIALS


Saturday, July 6, 2019

Postcards from the Past - Faux Postcards with Holder – New Collage Sheet, Digital Download Sets and Gentleman’s Emporium Papers


This project was inspired by the Gentleman’s Emporium 6x6 paper pad.  I haven’t done a collage project in a while so I thought it would be fun to make some faux postcards and a simple holder (which I’ll show you how to make) with which to display them. I also displayed some of my altered envelopes behind the postcards.
In terms of a theme for the cards I went vintage (of course) and then I thought I would have a little fun.
The first card is from Sherlock Holmes (who is in Argentina on the trail of his nemesis Professor Moriarty) to his sidekick Dr. Watson.
The second card is a couple vacationing in Paris, sending a postcard back to their children in London.
The third is a Scotsman on tour writing to his friend Isabella.  One of my favorite authors is Alexander McCall, who lives in Scotland and one of my favorite series he writes is set in Edinburgh and revolves around Isabella Dalahoose.
The images I used to decorate the cards come from new collage sheets and images sets as well as some older collage sheets (more info below and in the tutorial portion of the blog post).  You’ll also find Free vintage postcard image further down in the post.
NEW COLLAGE SHEET & DIGI IMAGE SETS
This sheet contains 11 smartly dressed men from the Victorian and Edwardian period. 
This set is packed with men, women and children from the Victorian and Edwardian periods.  Included are all of the images from the Dapper Fellows Collage Sheet, the Victorian Women Collage Sheet and the Victorian Children Collage Sheet plus an additional 11 images for a total of 47 images.
If you liked my Remnants of the Past #1 and #2 Collage Sheets, you will live the download set.   This set is packed with vintage ephemeral all sized to work with smaller projects like altered tins, and ATC’ although with a download set, you can adjust the size of the image to fit your project.  It contains all of the images from the Remnants of the Past #1 & #2 Collage Sheets plus 7 more for a total of 122 images.

THE DETAILS
MAKING THE HOLDER
I started by cutting 5 pieces of thick chipboard (you could layer thinner chipboard).  To determine the measurements, I used a combination of the size of the postcards the side of the clay trim, and the size of the feet.

Front and Back – These needed to be at least as long as the postcard but also long enough to work with the trim.  I used a silicone mold and polymer clay (you could use paper clay or Mold & Pour) to make the trim.  The trim has a repeat design, so I wanted to make sure the trim started and end between the designs.  The measurement I used was 6 7/8” wide x 1 ½” high.  The height is arbitrary.   It needs to be high enough to hold the cards and I wanted it low enough to see as much of the cards as possible

Bottom – The bottom piece was cut the same width as the front and back (6 7/8”) and wide enough to hold however many cards you want to display and to accommodate the size of the feet (1/1/4”).

Sides – The height of the sides is the same measurement as the height of the back and front.  But the width needs to be a little wider than the width of the bottom.  The reason for the difference is based on how the pieces are glued together, you need to not only use the bottom width measurement but also include the depth (edge) of the back and front pieces.  In the case of my holder, that ended up being 1 3/8” which I derived by bottom width 1 ¼” + the depth of my chipboard which was 1/16” for the front and 1/16” for the back.
Assembly & Decoration
I first painted all of the chipboard edges with a color that would complement the decorative paper (sand the edges before painting if necessary). Next, I covered all of the chipboard (back and front) with paper.  It is much easier to paper before rather than after you assemble the pieces.
I glued the front and back pieces to the bottom piece.  Once dry, I attached the side pieces.  By attaching the side pieces last, it gives the holder the best support as they are glued to the edge of the front, back and bottom pieces.  Because you are attaching the side pieces last, the width measurement needs to include both the width of the bottom and the depth of the front and back chipboard.

Making & Attaching the Border
I used silicone mold and polymer clay to make a border to fit around the holder.  Because the mold is so detailed, I used a roller to press the clay into the mold.
To remove the excess clay I used a clay blade/cutter to carefully remove all of the layers of excess clay, alternatively, you could use a razor blade.
Once you remove the excess clay you may find areas that aren’t entirely filled with clay, just press more clay into those areas and remove the excess with the blade.
Next, I baked the clay. When working a delicate thin intricate piece like this, I bake the clay in the mold at a lower temperature than usual and for a shorter period of time.  It is better to underbake it then put it back for a little longer than to burn the clay.

The border is shorter than the width of my holder.  Because of the pattern of the border, it is easy to use a full strip then piece a few more sections of the pattern to cover the entire width.
I also made it just long enough to be slightly longer than the holder.  The reason is when I attach the border to the side pieces, they will but up against the back of the front pieces to give me a nice edge.  Early I discussed using this consideration in determining the length of my front and back pieces.
Lastly, I added feet to the bottom of the holder and a strip of paper to the top as trim.
POSTCARDS
For the front, I used images of vintage postcards (you will find them further down in the post and can download them for your own use.)  Before I printed the postcard images, I added an address and message.   I mounted the images on a thin piece of chipboard to make them sturdier.
I covered the backside with paper from the Gentlemen’s Emporium 6x6 Paper Pad.
Next, I collaged images from the new collage sheet and image sets plus two other collage sheets, Rose Garden and Paris Postcards.  I also cut out detailed images from the paper pad.
Lastly, I inked the edges of the cards with Vintage Photo Distressed Ink.

FREE POSTCARD IMAGES
Feel free to click on each image to download these images and use them in your art.  To download the images, right click on the images and select "Save Image As" from the popup menu.