Saturday, March 31, 2012

ccc - nancy

this is similar to the one a couple days ago for tom. but this one shows the address in a straight line. tom's had a bouncy address. do you think one is better than the other?

on both of them, the address is indicated by a pencil line. i will actually drop these in the mail. i do not want to publish people's addresses on the internet.

Friday, March 30, 2012

ccc - cindy

i was going to finish this one at the workshop, but, it ended up being too hard to talk and write at the same time, so i brought this one home to finish. it is such a nice stamp. the style of lettering is called doodles. you may download it from i do not follow it exactly. i just use the general idea to make some shapes and then, doodle in some details. one thing we learned at the workshop was to take fonts, even fonts that you may not like and morph them into things that you do like. there were other lessons, too. i will be posting some examples.

fri am : now that i see this on the screen, the i in cindy needs to be filled in more. and maybe some of the other sections need to be filled in.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

ccc - tom

this is the first of three that i started after i returned from the workshop in milwaukee. tom helped up out with the exemplars. first i wrote a big loopy name with a pilot ink writer, then i went over it with gouache. the color of gouache is the magical color of masking tape. i like how the gouache made the black bleed just a bit. these bearden stamps came out last year. i have no idea how i missed them. they are L-O-V-E-L-Y.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

more class work

another one where she did not put a stamp on it and i found this one. the colors are great.

the theme of the workshop was layered. one of the layers had to do with making art and sending it away. so, i appreciate that this person hand-delivered this (and the past two) at the end of the workshop. i am hoping that i see some more mail by people who took the workshop. but, i am a little nervous that they have stage fright. i have a lot of students who are afraid to put their work on the blog. not sure why...

at any rate, thank you so much for these three spectacular examples. tomorrow, it will be back to my stuff....

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

more class work

same artist as yesterday. she did not put a stamp on this one. so, i found one that i knew wilma would like. she is part swedish and her last name is finnish, so, the stamp covers both of those bases. and that makes me fenno-scandinavian. i am so glad to have an official cultural definition.

exuberant, eh? (that's a little canadian-speak slipping in for no good reason)

Monday, March 26, 2012

class work

here is an envelope done in the workshop i have been talking about for a couple months. we were trying to do fun experimental letters and we were being inspired by stamps. i don't know if this artist wishes to be named... i forgot to ask. if anyone wants to commission some work by this artist, send me an email....

Sunday, March 25, 2012

guest artist

this popped up on facebook and i need to put it here. i would prefer to store it on pinterest, but they do not allow you to pin things off facebook. i do not know anything about it, except that it is lovely.

i also know that my box of envelopes that i took to the workshop in milwaukee is taking a long time to find its way back to iowa. i wonder if someone has intercepted it????
it arrived, whew 

Saturday, March 24, 2012

ccc - kathy

i don't have any pansy stamps anymore, so this is a picture of the stamp and it is much larger than the stamp was. my idea was to use the shapes of the leaves to form the letters. then, use purple caps on the address because there are purple caps on the stamp. the first letter of her last name is way-off...but, i have run out of time to do a perfect envelope for every single ccc member.

technically, the ccc workshop has come and gone. it was lots of fun and people might have learned a few things. i did not blab on the blog about heading out of town, as that would have been an invitation to break into my studio and steal all my envelopes. now i have to start fixing the ones i messed up.

Friday, March 23, 2012

ccc - donna

i tried to improve on this idea by putting in the people who carry the dragon, but, the dragon looks horrible. it does not have nearly enough movement. it looks like they are waiting for the parade to start. and their arms are too short. maybe i will try one more time.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

steve - hb

i think it is steve's birthday today. i should drop this in the mail. i like to do pointed pen borders. these are not my best. but not the worst either. h.b. steve. and h.b. to dk, too.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

ccc - jean

you would think i could do a better job on my own name. at first, i was liking the wonky-ness of the J and E, but the A-N does not fit with the J-E. so I should have tossed this one and started over. but, i kept going, thinking it might get better. so, this one goes in the stack to work on when i get to the workshop to demonstrate how to fix problems.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

ccc - monica

this was a style of lettering i considered for the workshop, but set it aside. i like it a lot, but i am not sure anyone else would like it. i might put it in a stack for people to try on their own if they are not enjoying the choices i made for the whole class.

fun stamps. i have a whole page of them, so i should be coming up with some other ideas....

Monday, March 19, 2012

ccc - beth felix

i need to color in the background of the B and F.
if i have time to scan the finished envelope, i will do that. instead of stars, you can put any shape you like behind the letters. and then add on emore layer behind that. i'm also thinking that the whole initial unit should have been larger.
adorable stamp.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

ccc - diane (maroon)

another metallic envelope, layered with metallic gel markers and regular gel markers. i do not think it is a good match with the stamp. these metallic envelopes are samples and i only have one of each color, so i am not putting much thought into the designs. if i like them, i won't be able to use the idea again, so, these are just experiments with low expectations. but, sometimes, some fun stuff pops up when you least expect it. lesson for the day...take time to just toss out goofy ideas and see what happens.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

www. - coryce

ok, this one came very close to not being posted. i am not happy with the last name. although, i do like the way the city runs up the flagpole. i'd use that idea again. but, other than that, it is a big pile of mistakes and no-nos.

Friday, March 16, 2012

ccc - kelly

ok, this is goofy. why is the copy starting down here? this envelope has a hex on it. EVERY SINGLE TIME i tried to scan it, it would lock up the scanner. finally, with my persistent temperament, i turned the envelope to a different orientation and it scanned. but, now, the creature that lives in the computer is trying to show me who's boss and will not let the copy go up where i would like it to start.

and, i don't have a lot to say about this envelope. we will talk about it at the workshop. it is a nice style to use when there are three colors in the stamp, and none of them dominate the other two. but, it is hard to describe in words how to do it. maybe we will get out our video camera and shoot a tutorial.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

ccc melissa (blue)

i would not have posted this one, except i like the way smith turned out. other than that, it is just a whole pile of warnings on what not to do. the melissa is clunky. the size is wrong, the two scripts are bad together. the stamp clashes. i could go on and on and on.....

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

ccc - jan

in the world of lettering, balloon letters are usually considered *cheezy.* i do not know what the politically correct term is. they certainly do not get much respect. i seldom defend them, but, i do not like to tell them that they are ugly or unworthy. i suppose we all draw the line somewhere. there are alphabets that i will not even talk about because they are so.... crude. but, balloons are happy and there are times when a balloon name might be appropriate. and i say, if you are going to make balloon letters, don't go half way, make sure they are actual balloons. add a little highlight, a knot, and a string.

i would have liked to figure out a better way to show the last name, but i was liking the way the word *flier* was in there, and amelia looked like she was doing her impersonation of the letter I.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

ccc - karen

work in progress. i would spend a long time adding layers to the name. you can see where i added silver gel pen to the silver gel marker outline to make sharper corners. then i added some of that darker blue and went over the blue with white gel pen. then i went over and tried something different on k-a. the main lettering was done with a pantone marker. they are very bleedy which can be a problem or it can be something that gives some texture to the very first layer...and invites more layers...and ends up eating a half hour or more.

Monday, March 12, 2012

ccc - theresa (brown)

well, the scan is crooked. i hope i have time to fix it. this was one of the clunkers i mentioned. i thought that stamp looked fine on brown...but it does not. and if i had done that name on scratch paper, before i did the envelope, i would have seen that it was not going to work. the only reason i am posting it is because i do like the way the address crosses the name. that is an idea that is worth remembering.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

ccc - rita

this style of lettering has a variation with the crossbars both high and low. it's fun when a name pops up that has a crossbar in every single letter, as her last name does. before you decide to use this style, you really have to look at the letters. sometimes it is just a dreadful combination. although, if it looks really bad, at first, maybe it is an invitation to be creative.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

ccc - jeanne

one of the loose scripty styles we will experiment with during the workshop. i love it with this stamp. it might go with all 8 love stamps. now, we need to find out if they are going to be available for a long time. it is so sad to fall in love with a stamp that has a short shelf life.

Friday, March 9, 2012

ccc - mary

all these white envelopes on the blog bother me when i look at the column of images, so i am putting in some colored envelopes. this is metallic paper with a combination of metallic gel markers, metallic gel pens, and plain gel markers. a couple more layers might be better. or it might be too much. maybe on our lunch break, we will flip some coins and see if we take the risk and add more, or not....

Thursday, March 8, 2012

ccc - tracy

there is a very similar one to this on the blog that was mailed, so i need another example (to bring to the workshop)

homework....think of other things that could be drizzled onto an envelope.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

ccc alyce

another one that will be finished during the workshop. it does not need a lot more, just some dark lines. markers that are just starting to dry up are so nice. it is obvious that the middle name was written first and then the top name and then the bottom name. but how did i get it to go dark again for the zip? well, i guess you have to come to the workshop and find out. i will post the answer after the workshop. first i have to see if anyone guesses. guesses are accepted here on the blog, too.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

beth - post it pinwheel

beth sends me some really good challenges. she wants the words *focal point* written around the star.

she has 10 letters and an 8 pointed star. it will be easy to tell the I that he has to either share a space with the o or the n. then two other letters have to share space. do we have any volunteers?
the lower case L is a skinny letter, but i think it is pretty hard to use upper and lowercase and have it be legible when it is in a circle.

maybe we need to flip the ball back into bath's court and ask her why she wants the words in a circle?

i'm being a little bit *uncooperative,* because i have a (quick and easy) solution that i love....but, i don't want to just tell her. i think she might recall one of my mantras....the one that is the solution to this challenge. not that there is only one solution. but, i do like the idea that you can solve every single problem in the universe with a list of 5 solutions. maybe 6 or 7. but, i am a big fan of simplicity. or maybe i am simple. is simple good or bad? can you be too simple? beth will respond to this via traditional email and i will relay her response :-) along with the solution that i hope has just come to her....

p.s. we  can see beth's instruction to take the white card off the colorful background, which i did, but then i put it back, because the colors were so pretty.

i also like the way the shapes in my name, Jean, on the envelope are pine-coney and beth did a good job with the greenery. it is inspired by the stamp without being matchy-matchy. and she has the address tucked in. she's been listening to my suggestions :-)))))

Monday, March 5, 2012

ccc - sue & judy

i was maybe going to cover this style in the workshop, but, i don't think it is versatile, so, this is just an idea that repeats one of my standard design suggestions. BIG NAME, super big, as big as will fit on the envelope. teeny-tiny address.

and, i will add a second envelope because this one is so faint and needs work.

once in a while you find a name with four letters in both the first and last name. so, we could have lots of fun variations with the letters. this is just the first
one that popped into my head.
it is a little pale, needs more oomph.
again, we might add to this at the workshop.
it looks very *quilt-y*

Sunday, March 4, 2012

ccc - valerie - jack-in-the-box

wonderful stamp. i would like to do 10 more envelopes with this stamp. but, sadly, it was one of a set of four and i never see them at the stamp store. this is a very tame envelope, but i like white space sometimes.

this is off the topic of envelopes, but it is a charming story, so, you might want to check it out

Saturday, March 3, 2012

ccc - jill houses

another favorite stamp. the smoke is too heavy, but, i still like the idea. this came from a font
Pucha Smoke Telegraph, that is available in a free download from The actual font is much smokier. I tried to lighten it up. What I should have done, was use a dark envelope and do the smoke in white.

Friday, March 2, 2012

ccc - ben

just a fun zig-zag line.
and some stars.
this might be my favorite george washington stamp. i should have used it on a brown envelope.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

ccc - bridget

i know i drew pencil lines, so i can't figure out how the letters smallerized at the end of bridget's name. this will be a sample for when we talk about outlines. i'll look for a better stamp.