Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Making a list...

Greetings! Honoré here. I've been 'silent' for the past couple months; broke my write/right hand and just a week ago did my brace come off. I am now slowly but deliberately relearning how to use my hand… physical therapy in December and hopefully, come 2014, I'll be back to my old self, again.
Needless to say, my creative endeavors have been seriously curtailed, so I am so. looking. forward. to. this next month.

And speaking of, I just looked over the December's activities and class schedule…lots of fun things happening the first couple weeks of the month: classes and contests and celebration of the Queen's Ink's  13th birthday…next weekend, Dec 7 & 8, 10 AM to 8 PM.

Again this year, The Queen's Ink will be collecting "birthday" gifts: children's clothing (coats, hats, scarves, mittens, etc), toys and art supplies to help make Christmas merry for a lot of kiddos in the area. Check out the details here or call the shop for more information.

 I am intrigued with the new Seasonal Zentangle Project Workshop scheduled for December 4 or 14. I have always admired the illuminated letter Q piece hanging in the shop. Hoping I'll be able to take the class…

There are a lot of other goodies: classes that will help you make a few gifts for your favorite persons and also, on the schedule, there's a banner contest going on right now; read the post below for the details. Sounds like a load of fun.

I hope to see you at the Shop and even in a class/workshop or two.



Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Christmas Banner Challenge

It’s a Banner year at The Queen’s Ink this holiday season! Help us decorate for the holidays… create a holiday-themed banner that can be strung and hung in our shoppe. Your banner must not exceed 8.5”x11” and must have two holes punched approximately 1 inch from each side and the top of the banner. Bring your project to the shop by December 7th (our Birthday), so we can display throughout the holiday season. Prizes will be awarded by The Queen on December 21st.
First Prize: $50 Gift Certificate for The Queen’s Ink
Second Prize: $25 Gift Certificate for The Queen’s Ink
Third Prize: $15 Gift Certificate for The Queen’s Ink

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Royal Yard Sale...

Yesterday was a great yard sale day at the shoppe, and the fun and great values continue today until 6:00 p.m. Stop by, say hi to Kate, and save on stamps, decorative paper, notecards/envelopes, embellishments, and a lot of other "this-n-that" crafting must-haves.

Inside, enjoy a 20% savings on Sizzix Tim Holtz Collection dies and texture plates, and 25% off Studio 490 (Wendy Vecchi)  stamps and Art Parts.

Check out our newest class samples and give yourself the gift of a workshop! With the holiday season gearing up, you'll want to carve out a little time for just YOU!!!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

  1. Create a project... an altered pumpkin (not real), card, box, wallhanging, home decor piece, book... ANYthing you want, really! You must use pumpkins on at least 50 percent of your art, and you must use the color ORANGE as part of your main color scheme.
  2. Bring your project to the shoppe as soon as you complete it. We will display all of the Challenge entries until mid-November.
1st, 2nd, and 3rd place prizes of $50, $25, and $15 gift certificates plus 
three honorable mention prizes will be awarded by The Queen on November 3rd.

 (Judging by shoppe staff and special guest judge Seth Apter)

Friday, September 6, 2013

what's new at the queen's ink?

Hey! Hey! Honoré  here. I'm back! And where might I have been, you ask...well, sadly, nowhere spectacular; rather, slowed down considerably by a toothache that finally has abated after several trips to my dentist and very. careful.. at-home. dental. hygiene. These kinds of setbacks really do put a crimp in one's style and plans...but, hey! that's the past and I'm ready to start anew, which is appropos for September. If you're like me, September really is the start of the year!

The Queen's Ink classes this month include the return of guest artist WendyVecchi for two whole days: September 21st and 22nd. Did you know that Wendy has a new line of Designer Archival Inks with Ranger?  The inks' palette is inspired by a vintage country garden. Wendy's classes are very technique-rich and you'll be using her new inks in both. So, click here and here to get the scoop on them, then call the shoppe to register (301-497-9449).
sample of Mixed Media Tag Art Journal - Sept 21

Sample of Project Trifecta- An All Day Art  Extravaganza

Patti's July CHA trip was a busy one, and the new products have begun to arrive.-- from great new double-sided patterned papers to these fun stamps that you can use to make your own Washi tape. I was so amused and smitten that I bought two sets.

Graphic 45 has released threre fabulous collections... you are going to love them ALL. Patti told Lolly that she just wanted to stop everything and make a new box with the "Twelve Days of Christmas" collection... so many possibilities!

The shoppe has expanded classroom studio space so be sure to stop in soon and see the new "wall."
And, as you read this, know that staff are busy putting out Christmas- themed papers; I took a quick look and drooled... Best hurry in before everything's snapped up.

Who knows, we just may bump into each other. Hope so.



P.S. Speaking of classes: I recently signed up for Dina Wakley's newest online class: Facing the Facts. I am a big fan of Dina's and I absolutely enjoyed every minute of the workshop she taught in June at The Queen's Ink on drawing faces. I've only had a cursory look at the online class but it seems to be the class all over again...truly, the next best thing to having Dina there to inspire and guide me. I think she's returning next year... I hope!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

project action stations...

Hot enough for ya? I've been staying in, venturing out only for my daily walks in the morning when it's a tad bit cooler or  if I have an appointment or errand or I just can't postpone this any longer task...Since I took trips in both May and June, I don't have any plans for more travel until it gets cooler.

This morning, amazed to see that July is one-third over - can you believe that? - I jotted down a list of creative playtime activities, many of which I can do right here at home in my studio (er, uh, a repurposed second-floor bedroom).

I find that I always have a host of projects either in a gee, I'd really like to do that stage or in process. Often, I can't take the next action because there's some prep involved or I've temporarily put the project away - consequently, it's in limbo or mostly out of mind since I either can't see it or I'm not prepared to take the next action. One of the items on my list was to create a list of 15 minute project actions and  set up Project/Action stations to accomplish the task/s at hand.

A Project/Action Station keeps the project front and center and ready for the next action, e.g.,  after I've printed photos for a scrapbook album or layout, I need to trim and insert them in a page protector or lay out on a piece of card stock. So, my project action station houses the trimmer, cardstock and an album with page protectors -  plus my tools and adhesives are a mere arm's length away. Now, I can easily stick the photos in the page protector or fiddle with the placement of photos on a layout...

Another example involves browsing magazines for collage items and "faces:" Ever since I took Dina Wakley's Facing the Facts workshop  last month, I can't look at a face in a magazine without studying it and wondering: Can I draw that? But of course, I tell myself  and I turn the page. I think I'll serve myself better if I begin to create a resource file of interesting faces.  My Project/Action Station includes a growing stack of magazine/s; a large shopping bag for recycling the spent magazines; and a colorful file folder for collecting the rapidly growing pile of faces to draw.  I will keep my drawing supplies - copy paper and 4 x 6 plain index cards - and pencils at this station, too.

I always have a head-full of ideas for art journal entries but I'm often stopped cold in my tracks for getting them down on paper 'cause I haven't prepped the pages in this or that journal or on this or that loose sheet of paper. So, I decided a Project Action Station was definitely in order! This station is primarily a cart (from IKEA) to hold paints and journals; a dish drainer (also from IKEA) I've repurposed for holding the gessoed pages of paper; and other art journal supplies.

I am liking the idea of the stations and enjoying having projects ready and handy...and oh yes, I also have a timer on tap. That way, I can make the most of any 15 minutes or more  I have...

What do you do to help jumpstart your creative play times?

Stay cool and have fun creating...


PS. Seth Apter returns Nov 2 and 3 to teach his I Witness... workshop. Read more here and hurry up and register now! This class will fill up FAST.
...and Patti leaves for CHA next week, July 20. Let her know if you have any products to look up, vendors to visit...

Thursday, June 27, 2013

more Dina love...

Honoré here: In my last post, I promised to share more face photos and information from Dina's encaustic tag book class. First, the faces:

I love and am inspired by each one and the entire Faces class  ~ in fact, I find that I cannot look at a magazine or a person on TV or in person without thinking: I can draw that face...I think. That thought may be a bit premature considering I've not actually taken pencil to paper since the class but I have been collecting faces. 

Dina suggested we build a reference library and I have: using my iPhone camera ; ripping out pictures from magazines; and gathering information from the Internet, books and DVDs. I ordered and received 100 Girls on Cheap Paper, a neat book and just downloaded from Interweave Press The Whimsical Face by Jane Davenport (you can take a quick preview of the DVD here).  I am so inspired that I've planned an "art afternoon" with my grand nieces for this Sunday (June 30); guess what's on the agenda?!

Regrettably I did not take Dina's Encaustic Tag Book class - and like the commercial that shows a woman kicking herself in the derriere, I could/did the same, after I saw some of the class' creations:

Not to be totally undone because I'd not signed up for the class, I did the next best thing and found an online tutorial that I share with you here (tho' minus instruction on using the encaustic medium: hot, melted beeswax - a quick search will turn up some more information, I'm sure) and a blog post from a participant at one of Dina's classes (note: not at The Queen's Ink) that adds a little more to the process. I'm pretty confident that with Dina's book: Art Journal Freedom and my experiences from the classes I've taken with her - all thanks to The Queen's Ink for bringing her to Maryland - I too will eventually make an encaustic tag book. It's on my agenda for the summer.

If you took either/both of the classes, we'd love to have you share your Dina love in the comments. What did you take away? What are you creating? 


PS. Dina hinted strongly that she'd be back to The Queen's Ink before 2013 ends. So I suggest you stay tuned via The Queen's Ink website/this blog. In the meantime, check out the summer classes on tap and take yourself on an artist's date to The Queen's Ink. I always find something new, exciting, inspiring...always!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

welcome back, dina!

Last weekend, June 7-9, Dina Wakley was The Queen's Ink's featured artist-in-residence.

Over the three days! she taught a total of five workshops. I was lucky enough to take three (and wished I'd signed up for all).

We were introduced to a variety of art techniques and inspired beyond our wildest imaginations. In Dina's inimitable style, we were encouraged to experiment, play, discover, and told, in no uncertain terms, that we weren't allowed to  a) moan or  b) over-think. Always great advice and often, really hard to refrain from doing...but we did (or if we did moan and/or over-think, we did so surreptitiously.)

Of the three workshops I took, my favorite was "Facing the Facts." We learned to  draw faces. Yep, you read that right:  d-r-a-w! When asked, we all agreed that we couldn't draw and especially, not faces. Surprise, not only could we, we did! Take a look:

Dina demonstrating

Left: drawn; Right: painted

The next four faces are by some of the class participants:

Dina told us that she'd only been drawing faces for about a year and a-half...since being inspired by the book: 100 Girls on Cheap Paper by Tina Berning. So, in 2012, Dina also drew 100 faces (and many more)...and challenged us to do the same. We did draw at least three during the class - guess that only leaves 97 to go...

When I got home Saturday afternoon, as I'm wont to do, I did an Amazon search for a) the book (my used but in mint condition is on its way) and b) a web search on drawing faces - lots of great fodder out there. I, too, am inspired to draw at least 100 faces this summer. How about you? Want to join me? If so, please leave a comment and/or if you attended the class, let me know that also and share with us your take on the experience.

In my next post, I'll share some more faces...and also, some photos from Dina's encaustic tag book class. 

(a face in progress...)


Thursday, May 23, 2013

creative inspiration...

Hi, Honoré here,

I've just returned from a week-long quilting workshop in Sisters, Oregon - my absolutely most favorite place on earth. For the past four years, I've made this annual May trek to Sisters and have returned, over-flowing with ideas and inspiration for any number of quilty mixed-media artistic endeavors.

I think this year's workshop filled me with over-the-top inspiration because we went beyond just intuitively stitching bits and pieces of fabric together to make an art quilt. We also learned about and played with a variety of techniques for making marks on fabric, for example: using stencils with oil pastels to printing using the Gelli Plate to carving stamps for stamping to making shibori, just to name a few of the techniques we tried.

Along the way, we discovered new techniques that appealed to us and proceeded to engage us in more in-depth exploration. We made mistakes...and that was A-OK!

I think that workshops are truly one of the best ways to be inspired and The Queen's Ink is one of the best local resources for inspirational, creative mixed-media art workshops.  Through them, we're provided with the opportunity to flex our creative muscles, to make mistakes and learn not only how to do a technique but also, what appeals to us, what gets our creative juices flowing. A workshop gives us a chance to try out a technique without making a full-blown investment of materials and supplies. One such technique that comes to mind is encaustic- the new (ahem, an art form that has been traced back to ancient Greeks) art medium that has taken the creative art community, all branches, by storm. Have you toyed with the idea of doing a piece of encaustic art?

 Well, now's your chance: Guest Artist Jess Greene is coming to The Queen's Ink the weekend of  June 21 - 23 for an in-depth exploration of encaustic. Jess was so intrigued with the medium that "she quit her day job as a teacher and spent a month-long residency in Spain in 2011to paint in encaustic." Go here to read a guest post, written by Jess, that highlights her love for the medium.

Here are a couple of Jess' class samples:

Looking at these photos, one cannot tell  they are encaustic pieces...but, in real life, they are not only intriguing but also,very textural. Treat yourself to learning and experiencing a new medium without having to make a trip to Spain (though that doesn't seem like such a bad option - smile)... check out the class descriptions and give the shop a call! Hurry, 'cause classes fill up f-a-s-t!

Hoping to see you there,


PS. Art quilters use encaustic in their works, too...

Sunday, April 28, 2013

a quick tour of Art Asylum...

This past Saturday (April 27th) was the date for The Queen's Ink Art Asylum artist showcase and silent auction. All day long the space right next to the shoppe was filled with people browsing  displays, chatting with the artists and making purchases. The photo essay that follows is just a sampling of the 20 artists who were there sharing their insane creativity. I especially enjoyed seeing the work of fellow classmates and workshop instructors I've met over the past year.

Decorated cigar boxes were popular; each one unique. This one was from The Peddler's Gallery

Lorie of the Peddler's Gallery
 Mari O'Dell of Enchanted Journey Design, created this wonderful color wheel made from flip flops; ingenious.

These ladies are two of a trio: A.N. A's Custom Creations who create hand-crocheted wearable art:

 Just For Fun's Kathy and Mary Kay make these fun soldered pendants and ornaments:

Monica  and Kathleen offered custom birdhouse albums and other paper home decor.

Donna and Val have an interesting twist on their business: they are event planners and they make unique hand-made gifts and home decor. Whoops, no photo. Visit their blog: Two Snaps and a Twist.

Suze Perrott, mixed media artist, has taught several classes at The Queen's Ink. It was to drool to see a lot of her work on display; this is just a small sampling. ..

suze perott.
 A new artisan, these weathered mugs by Bob Vogtman are made from leather stretched in embroidery hoop; they are unique and colorful.

Ana Maria DiLuigi had inchie art and decorated cigar boxes( definitely for men) on display.

Chris Hines had quite a wonderful collection of handmade and altered books:

The fragrances from Margarita ~ Rose display was delightful; I could've stayed there much longer ~ so relaxing...

margarita ~ rose
Dee Gray makes these delightful Bottled Curiosities; they are her version of of the message in the bottle. Stay tuned as she may be offering a workshop at The Queen's Ink sometime in the future.
 I am sorry that I didn't take better notes for this display; I'm not quite sure who the artisan is but I love the welcome and other signs. My apologies...

Sandra of J.Delilah's (and an exhibitor) wrote on her facebook page: "Having a great time at Art Asylum 2013!"

And so did I! Looking forward to next year's event...and I hope to see you there as an exhibitor?



PS. And if you were there, we would love for you to share your impressions in the Comments. Thanks.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Art Asylum...where insanely creative artisans reside

Join us at The Queen's Ink on Saturday, April 27th for an insanely creative day. Not only do we have a fabulous returning Guest Artist that weekend (Carol Owen) teaching her handmade books and personal shrines, we have our insanely creative customers turned artisans offering their finished artwork for sale. You will definitely want to visit Savage Mill, so mark your calendars now!

Show Hours: 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Reception & Silent Auction: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Where: The Old Weave Building

Items for the silent auction are being donated by the participating artists. Proceeds will benefit Howard County Blossoms of Hope.

Friday, February 15, 2013

(i heart) Art Journal Freedom...

... Art Journal Freedom , published book by North Light Books, is  Dina Wakley's new book.

My copy arrived last week and would you believe it actually sat on my reading table for several days before I started it. Don't ask me why since  I'd waited for months...go figure.

Anyway, the book is a gem and so Dina.  All the accompanying photos are of her artwork and supplies, including the step-by-step illustrations of the techniques - one per- that accompany each chapter. So, how do I know the photos are of her supplies - 'cause the items depicted show they've been used, including the photo of Dina (that accompanies the artist's statement) complete in her very-painted apron holding her Dyan Reaveley Dylusions Creative Journey journal in a very non-pristine stage.

Art Journal Freedom  is divided basically into two parts: The first half covers composition and the second, color -  both hallmarks and the underlying structure of Dina's work. She says that "if one understands the principles of design and color, you have power over them, even to break them."

Not all the principles of design and color are covered, just primarily the ones that apply to making art journal pages. We are  invited, encouraged and even challenged to not only explore the rules but also to play, experiment, create, express, discover, and yes, even to learn from the messes we make, like combining two complementary colors and winding up with brown soup (I can't even begin to count how many times I've done that, inadvertently ;-)). I found the chapters on color especially valuable and one thing I immediately did was get myself a color wheel.

Those of us who were lucky enough to take a class with Dina when she was at The Queen's Ink last October (or even other places and online) will feel, as we read and contemplate and play with the ideas, techniques, information and inspiration from the book, that we've re-kindled an old friendship. And if  you're at all like me, you'll pull out your supplies, tools, apron, prop up the book and let your muse have a ball! I bet your book will take on the look and feel of well-used - paint splatters and all - and it will be.

Just a note: Art Journal Freedom is not just for art journalers; I think anyone in the mixed media and art/craft arena will find something of value.

I encourage you to take a look at Art Journal Freedom and oh, by the way, reserve June 7 & 8, 2013 - Dina's scheduled a return visit to The Queen's Ink. Details are still being developed, so stay tuned. In the meantime, go experience some freedom in your art journal. And if you have the book, we'd love to read your take in the comments.



Tuesday, January 22, 2013

A bucket list of sorts...

Greetings and Happy 2013! Has the new year caught you off guard as it has me?  Whoa! Not so fast there...I've barely gotten  (actually, I'm not too sure I can even use the qualifier barely) started and I am absolutely astonished that January is practically over!

Though I don't make resolutions I do spend a lot of time contemplating and anticipating the coming year. I always have way too many thoughts and ideas on tap for any given month and the entire year. And I am often stymied by too many choices, so much so that I frequently  don't get started 'cause I can't make up my mind: where to begin!

Going through my mind as I write this post are the following possible 2013 projects:
  • creating a  365 something: a daily art journal or a tag a day or a fabric post card or a heart-a-day (inspired by Joanne Sharpe's article in the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Cloth Paper Scissors. And that Joanne's coming to The Queen's Ink in March is just icing on the cake, me thinks...
  • making a fabric art journal. I really love working with fabric, especially choosing bits-n-pieces as I create a palette. 
  • decorating more cigar and other boxes...I find this to be an absolutely fulfilling and rewarding project, in addition to being fun! And The Queen has several classes planned in February that take the project to different levels. Can't decide which I'll do  tho' I think I'd better hurry 'cause for all I know, the classes may already be filled.
Jewelry Tray workshop - February 9th

  • trying my hand at sketching/drawing and/or doodling. Last fall I ordered the cutest book: Doodling in French: How to Draw with Joie de Vivre by Anna Corba and I've been promising myself, today is the know where that has gotten me...
  • in that same vein: drawing. Earlier this week I discovered a digital art journaling app:  Paper.53 for the iPad. It is too cool! And the best part: it's portable and doesn't require tools, paints, papers, etc. And did I say: free? Tho' you do have to pay for some additional tools and paints if you want them. (I will share a photo of a page as soon as I figure out how to do it - I think a screen capture is it and I'm wondering if there is a print function. I think that would be just great 'cause you could then do a page or many, print them out and then adhere to a journal.)
The above list is just a sampling of the smorgasbord of ideas and inspirations bouncing around my brain... and I've not even touched on the PIPs - projects in progress - that call out to me every single day. That's a whole 'nother list.

What's on your bucket list for 2013? Would love to have you share in the comments. And speaking of such, the current issue of Cloth Paper Scissors has some ideas...including a really great article on Donna Downey, too!

BTW: I was at The Queen's Ink a week ago. It has totally been rearranged and reorganized. Get there quickly so you can see first hand how open and even more inviting the store space is!

(when you enter the store, you are greeted by this display. turn right or left for surprises)


Wednesday, January 16, 2013

CHA Highlights - Part 1

I'm headed home from not so sunny California. It was so cold here I nearly froze my royal highness off! It's a good thing that most of my time was spent inside the Anaheim convention center walking the rows and rows of vendors and checking out their new product offerings. I warmed up when my credit card caught fire from over-use. Needless to say, my trip was a very successful one, and fun too. Lots of new products will be arriving over the next 3 months. Watch for updates on Facebook, our blog, and the newsletter. I'll write more once I arrive home.

Here are a few highlights to tide you over. Darling new stamps from Penny Black. See photo.

Tim's new paints - 24 colors
Also new images from Stampendous and Impression Obsession.

Tim Holtz and Dyan Reaveley each introduced new products... Tim has fabulous new Distress Paints (shown left) which I had the pleasure of using... and yes, you will want them all. I'll tell you more about them later.

Dyan released six new inks, stencils, and great stamp images.

Pocket watch (new Sizzix die) and alarm clock projects with new
embellishments (from Advantus "Idea-ology")
Left: Joanne Sharpe (coming in March) demonstrates new Silks and
Twinkling H2O's (we ordered these). Viva Decor has new pearl paint pens (displayed
at right), all on order and available at the shoppe the first week of February.

Who could resist Brenda Walton's new dies (for Sizzix)... can you say ALL THINGS QUEEN-ISH ?! a full sized teacup, shoes, and embellished tiara... you know they had my name all over them!