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Create A Day

One creative project every day for a year

Jul-3-2011

Day 150(2 days late): Pop Up Birthday Card

Posted by annagrace under Days 101-200

Way back in January when I first decided to do this 365 project, I wrote a note on facebook describing it to my friends and family and asking for support and suggestions for projects. My friend Josh said, and I quote, “june 18th is my bday, so you can make me a silly bday card!! a pop up card would be killer!” So, a couple of weeks late due to craziness and not wanting to pay to send the larger that normal card, I kept my promise and made him a pop up birthday card!

This took a lot longer than I thought it was going to… Most of the tutorials I found online were really simple and the sort of things a 5 year old could do, so I kept searching for something a bit more complex until I found a tutorial which showed how to make pop up stairs. The dialogue is a bit awkward, but she really does help you get the basic idea of how to do it… while also making it seem waaaaayyyy easier than it actually is. So I started making mine out of an miss-printed cover I had made for a portfolio because I thought it would be good and sturdy. I ended up having to carefully measure each cut or it wouldn’t line up right, so that took awhile, and then with each step, it added more and more folds which affected the stability of it… but I kept forging on until I ended up with “stairs” that looked more like a tiered pyramid. I then cut out a pop up part surrounding the “stairs” because I wanted to make that sort of like a banner. I then cut out shapes from brightly colored paint chips that were sort of like spills and wrote the words “More awesome at every stage of” on them and attached them to the banner thingy, and then I cut out abstracted letters to spell LIFE and stuck them to the base. I attached another half sheet of the portfolio paper to the front cover for extra stability and a piece of poster paper to the back. I wanted to make the background paper a little bit brighter, so I took the same bright green sample jar I used in the last post (which I ended up giving to another friend as a much belated birthday present today… he loved it :) ) and did a light dry brush coat over the outside and the base in the inside, then I swirled around a bit on the top with a fan brush. I painted the “steps” with a heavier coat on every other one to make them stand out more. Finally, I traced some silhouettes I found online of people in action, like jumping, break dancing, or skateboarding (which Josh does a lot), cut them out and stuck them to the various stages. I was going to print out pictures of josh doing many of these actions, as well as a hilarious one of him in his Yellow-Bellied Sap-Sucker costume from Beaux Arts, but I was have some serious technical difficulties and was running out of time, so I just made do with tracing some similar pictures. So here’s the front cover.

Not very exciting because I wanted the inside to be even more surprising! Sorry it’s a crappy pic because I was in a hurry, but it just says “Shaffes! (his nickname) Happy (super duper late) Birthday! You Are…” And here’s the Pièce de résistance… the inside:

And at an angle so you can see the pop out effect better.

I think it turned out pretty awesome, especially considering this is my first time doing something like this! I will definitely try this technique again and refine it now that I know more about it.

And he loved the card, by the way! :mrgreen:

Anna Grace

Jul-2-2011

Day 149(2 days late): Paint Chip Collage Part 2

Posted by annagrace under Days 101-200

You may recall me making a collage out of paint chips and mod page about a month back. Here’s a pic of how it was as a reminder. (with ridiculous flash…)

Well, that’s been sitting in my living room staring at me since then begging me to do something else with it. I liked it by itself, but I thought it needed something extra. So today I was eating dinner and saw the sample jar miss-tint that I’m using for another project (post coming about that tomorrow!!) and I thought, “That super bright green would look cool on all of the neutral murky colors!” So I thought that maybe I would make like a vine or plant graphic with it because I friend told me that the background collage looked like a light at the end of a tunnel and something growing out of darkness is another metaphor along those same lines. I looked around on good old google for awhile and found this cool interpretation:

I liked the sort of spirally look of the plant itself, so I tried to recreate that a bit. Well… that’s when the problems started. :neutral: At first I tried to sketch it out using a pencil so I had guides for when I painted, but the pencil wasn’t marking at all on the thick layer of mod-podge. Then I just decided to wing it… and I quickly realized that the brush I was using (and the only one I was willing to sacrifice with house paint) was way too wide to get all the little details I wanted, and I had made the bases of the plants way to big! :oops: So, at first I tried to wash off the paint, and was fairly successful with the part that was still wet, which I stupidly started trying to wash off first, but the dried down parts were only coming off after some serious rubbing and were sort of taking off the sheen of the background!! So, I decided to just work with the little bit that was still stuck on there. I had liked the way the plant bases were looking by themselves with out all the branches and leaves, so I decided to just do them like plants that swirled all the way to the top (if that makes sense… sorry I’m super tired…). Well, when I started over I ended up making the biggest plant base even bigger than before and I couldn’t get the curve of it right, so I just sort of winged it. Then, you couldn’t really see the shapes very clearly, so I used another sample jar (originally from the mosaic painting) that was red and lightly outlined the shapes (I found an old tiny make-up brush that the handle was broken off of and used that). It’s definitely not what I had originally intended, but I like it! It’s very abstractly organic, I think, but it a good way. And I like the contrast of the paint chip collage with the actual paint. Sorry for the bad picture… I’ll get another one tomorrow maybe. The red is actually much less brown than it looks in this picture.

I’m debating whether or not I want to put another layer of mod-podge or a spray sealer I have over top of this to get that sheen back. My worry is that it will take off or smudge the paint, so I’ll have to experiment with it! The great thing about this project is that it was absolutely free! :mrgreen: As I mentioned in the first part of this, I got the canvas at work because they were going to through it away, all the paint chips were damaged ones from the books at work, the mod-podge I already had on hand (so maybe like a couple of bucks were spent if you really want to get technical here), and the paints were sample jars that would have been thrown away anyways!! Free is always good :)

I’ll hopefully be catching up tomorrow… The actual post for today (Day 151) should have been a recap video, so I’ll post this birthday project I’ve been working on for a bit and the video then!

Anna Grace

Jun-28-2011

Day 143(4 days late): Sketch on a Paint Chip

Posted by annagrace under Days 101-200

Well, I was feeling better today… I made it through work with only a slight headache, but then it started getting really bad again on my way home, so I just crashed once I got home. So, I just did a simple sketch for this post on one of my many, many paint chips from work.

I was able to find one that was mostly unmarred except for the holes being ripped out. I just started sketching with a ball-point pen and let the flow of my hand guide me. It started to look like a bowling pin, so I decided to make it a curvy vase instead and added tulips. Then I added a framed mirror and a lamp. Simple, but I like the way the tilted composition of it turned out, although unintentional. Unfortunately, for the life of me I couldn’t get a good picture… so you’ll have to deal with this blurry one.

Sorry this is such a lame post… I just need to go to bed. If it makes it better, I didn’t have energy to make anything other than a can of fruit for dinner :neutral:

Anna Grace

Jun-2-2011

Day 118(2 days late): Paint Chip Collage Part 1

Posted by annagrace under Days 101-200

I decided to break this project into 2 parts because I worked on it for hours today and am only done with the first part!!

The past fews weeks at work, I’ve been organizing the big paint chip books. I reordered any that were missing and took out any that were torn, marked up, wrinkled, or otherwise messed up. I swear, I sometimes wonder what the heck people do to these when they check them out… I’ve gotten some returned that look like they’ve been immersed in water, run over by a car,  or dipped in honey!! Why return it then? At any rate, instead on throwing away all the damaged chips, I kept them thinking that I could use them for projects. I ended up with a pretty massive collection, and I finally decided today that I would do something with them, so I did a collage!

I started out with an old canvas that had been painted with a faux finish at work. They were going to toss a few, and I rescued them for projects a while back. I decided that I would do the background in neutral tones progressing from dark on the edges to light in the center. (All the colors were from the Historical Collection because I had the most repeats of those) I basically decoupaged torn pieces to the canvas with a gloss mod-podge that I already had on hand. It took a really long time to do each of the colors and get them to stick well. I finished it off with a final thick coat of the mod-podge in the hopes that it would stick it down better. This took forever to dry!! In fact, it got to midnight and it still wasn’t dry, so I went ahead and took pictures so I could post this and go to bed! Here’s with and without flash so you can see the sheen.

I think it turned out pretty neat! The best part of this project is that it cost me absolutely nothing! (unless you count the mod-podge that I’ve had for over a year) I want to do something on top of all this, but I’m not sure what yet… stay tuned!

I’m (obviously) still behind on posts…. I hope to catch up this weekend!

Anna Grace

May-6-2011

Day 92(3 days late): Paint Chip Card

Posted by annagrace under Days 1-100

As I mentioned before, I am currently in Atlanta for my cousin Matt’s wedding! The rehearsal dinner is tonight, but we decided the present from my sister and myself would be appropriate to give them tonight, instead of tomorrow. I will post what I made later after they see it, but I also made a card for them!

Over the past few weeks at work I’ve been organizing and reordering the big books of color chips. I would take out ones that were messed up, so in the end, I ended up with a huge stack! Instead of throwing them all away, I kept them and took them home thinking I would make something out of them! Here’s about half of them!

Anyways, I will probably use these for many, many projects, but today, I used them to make a card for my cousin and his wife! I just stuck two gray shades together and cut a square out with pinking shears, then did the same with a red and another gray (the bridesmaid dresses are red…). On the front gray side, I wrote their names with a red sharpie and drew some swirlies on the other side. On the red I wrote our message to them, and on the back gray side, I did some more decorations in red. I tied these two sides together with red wraphia!


Gotta run!!

Anna Grace