Saturday, 31 December 2011

Happy New Year!!!

Hi Everyone,

Here we are, on the cusp of another year. I've still no idea where this current one went, so very quickly. 

It had some very sad times, with the loss of Selene Mama Cat, and a very good friend, Marian. But there were also lots of good times, and I am holding the expectation that 2012 is going to be a magnificent year.

I'm never much one for New Year's Resolutions, but I do intend to try and be more organized this coming year - allowing for a better work-life balance, and more digital art time.

I even hope to create some more little freebie kits - if anyone has subjects of interest they would like covering, please leave a note in the comments and I can see what I can come up with.

For now I'll wish you all a very Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year. May 2012 be a good'un for you!

Page created in Craft Artist. Kit used was "Happy New Year" by Zirconium Scraps and the clock face is one made by me for last year from Quick Shapes.



Thursday, 22 December 2011

Krystal's Beautiful Christmas Kit Freebie

Hi Everyone,

So much for thinking I wouldn't be making another post before Christmas...

It suddenly occurred to me that I hadn't mentioned that my very good friend Krystal has also dabbled her toe into the Freebie Kit waters. Well, actually, it's probably truer to say that she's dived in head-first!

Having "met" on DaisyTrail, Krystal and I soon learned that we lived just a mere 6 miles away from each other, and in fact she is only a couple of minutes drive away from where I work.

So over the last few months we have got together a few times now, and recently she told me she fancied having a go at producing her own little mini-kit freebie; perhaps half a dozen papers and two to three dozen embellishments.

She asked me if I would do a test drive for her and sent me over the kit. I had a little play - it was just perfectly timed to make a card for a work colleague who has two dogs and a cat on which she dotes, and Krystal's kit had some ideal bits that I could use.

I told her I thought it was a great little kit, and she asked me over to help her get a blog up and running so that she had a platform to release it from. Krystal's Krafty Place was thus born.

When I arrived, she told me she was just in the process of tidying up the kit ready for uploading, and also mentioned that it was a bit bigger than when I had seen it a few days previously. While she was sorting out dinner, would I like to give it the once-over for her, to see if there was anything she had missed?

A bit bigger than previously - something of an understatement! There were now 269 embellishments, 15 papers and 11 frames. So, just like Topsy, this "mini" kit just grew and grew!

Unfortunately, since it's release I haven't had a chance to play with it because of my eye limiting my time, but it is a corker of a kit. It may be a bit late for Christmas cards, although there are always those last minute ones, but if you want a Christmas kit to use for those post-Christmas scrap book pages for all those family photos you've snapped, this is certainly one to consider.

It's so big you have to download it in 4 parts from Krystal's blog.

Not only can you find this great kit but Krystal is also producing some lovely quote pages; you must pay a visit.



Wednesday, 21 December 2011

The Winter Solstice 2011

Hi Everyone,

Tomorrow (Thursday) at 05.30 GMT marks the Winter Solstice, here in the Northern Hemisphere. A Sacred Time from time immemorial.

Not being a Christian I don't celebrate Christmas, but I do celebrate the Winter Solstice. On my work blog I have posted a meditation that I like to carry out on this occasion and this is the page that I have used to illustrate this special time of year.

Created in Serif Craft Artist the Stoenhenge images are from (CCby2.0) bocan_2005 and VicWJ; and All other images my own.

It took the best part of three days to put this page together as I've been having a problem with my right eye, diagnosed as PVD (Posterior Vitreous Detachment). It sounds horrible and perhaps quite serious but is in fact quite benign, thankfully! It will prove an interesting little challenge to work on (if you are interested there are more details here) but the main thing is that I can't spend too much time in any one go at the PC as the vision becomes more blurry the longer I'm on and it's not very comfortable.

It took three separate sessions to extract the mistletoe from one of my photos, but I got there in the end. I just have to listen to my body and when the eye tells me it is tired I know it's time to go and do something else to give the precious little peepers a rest.

Tonight that meant starting on the rum truffles as I need a dummy run to ensure that I get them just right for a Boxing Day buffet. They are a Delia Smith recipe, and look quite diabetes friendly so that the OH can indulge a little. They will be ready for the first test-taste tomorrow.

As well as receiving the news that my eye problem wasn't anything serious, which certainly made me feel a lot happier in the run-up to the Festive Season, today I also learned that the page I used to showcase my Festive Gift Tags and Baubles Freebie Kit and as a Festive Greetings to my SBF Friends was awarded an Editor's Choice. Was I chuffed or what!

The "Eye" is starting to grumble again so it's time for me to finish for now. I doubt there will be another posting before Christmas so I take the opportunity to wish you all the very best for a Safe, Joyous, Peaceful and Lovely Festive time, in which ever way you celebrate this sacred time of year.

Brightest of Solstice Blessings,


Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Dipping My Toe into the Freebie Kit Waters...

Hi Everyone,


I needed some gift tages for my festive presents and decided to make my own. Last year it took a lot longer to dress the tree because I was taking photos of the baubles, etc, before they went onto the tree. 

We had had a new camera in September so it was much better at taking close up shots that still looked good.

So in the last couple of weeks I started extracting the images from the photos and putting together some backing papers. It gave me the first real opportunity to have a little play in Art Rage Studio - the 2 glitter and sparkle pages are the result. I'm definitely going back to play with that!

Here is a sheet of the finished tags, left blank, for you to use, if you don't want to make your own. This is the first time I have done this, so hopefully, when you right click on the image you should be able to either save or copy them to your workspace.

Having spent the time collecting all the bits and pieces together I decided it might be nice to offer it as my very first FREEBIE KIT! So here we have it - Festive Gift Tags and Baubles Freebie Kit.

Festive Gift Tag and Baubles preview - not all elements shown.

Festive Gift Tag and Baubles Papers preview
For those with Serif Craft Artist, you can download the .pack file, ready to put into the folder you keep all your digikit packs in. Some Craft Artist Brushes are included.

This is my first foray into this sort of thing and I hope it all works as it should. The links should allow an instant download for you. If there are any problems, please let me know.

I hope you enjoy using the kit, and I'd love to hear any feedback or see links to pages made with it. I would respectfully ask that you abide by my TOU which are included with the kit and can also be found on my TOU page.

And just in case I don't find time to post again before Christmas, may I wish you all a happy and joyful time!