Wednesday, March 23, 2016

DecoArt Easy Abstract

Get ready for the easiest awesomeness ever! Okay maybe that's overstating it a little bit but this video shows how you can get spectacular results with minimal effort and just a few inexpensive DecoArt products:

 

Here is the list of supplies used this video, all from DecoArt:
DecoArt Media Gesso-Black
DecoArt Media Gesso-White
Crafter's Acrylic-Tutti Frutti 
Crafter's Acrylic-Pure Pumpkin
Americana Acrylics-True Red
Americana Neon-Sizzling Pink
Americana Neon-Thermal Green
Americana Neon-Scorching Yellow 
Andy Skinner Stencil-Hippy Chic
Craft Twinkles Writers-Gold

You will also need:
Text weight paper, any size 
Inexpensive 2" chip brush like these
Sponge or other applicator for stenciling
Optional: Americana Stencil-Scribble



Talk about a lot of bang for your buck! What you do with your finished piece is up to you. I'm using mine as journal covers but you can collage with it, frame it as abstract art, use it in a scrapbook layout or on an art journal page, decoupage with it, use it on handmade greeting cards or embellishments, make ATCs, inchies, twinchies, DaVincis, whatever!

Pick up your supplies in the DecoArt Online Store and don't forget to browse through the categories. You might accidentally find some hidden clearance items if I haven't snatched them all up already.


Thursday, March 10, 2016

Some of my favorites (and not so favorites) from #NAMTA

I was very fortunate to have been able to attend NAMTA's Art Materials World here in Houston last week. It's a trade show similar to CHA but caters more to those in the fine art world. The show was held in conjunction with CAMEX, the Campus Market Expo for college stores. NAMTA occupied one exhibit hall in the George R. Brown Convention Center and CAMEX filled up the other four so there was lots to see.

The amazing folks over at Canvas Corp Brands had a booth at NAMTA and so graciously allowed me to attend with them. I helped them to set up and tear down their booth as well as demoed some products and helped out where I could. I've pimped myself out for way less than that so I think everybody won!

I thoroughly enjoyed spending some time with CCB's Randy and Christine Meier as well as all my other best friends who I just met. Erin Reed and Heather Kindt were on hand to help in the booth and I had a great time getting to know them. Ken Oliver Crafts shared booth space with us which means I got to hang out with Anita Houston and John Cox. I know, try not to be jealous.

I took some pictures which you can see in my NAMTA album on Flickr and I filmed a few short videos that you can find in my NAMTA playlist on YouTube. There are a few companies I want to specifically mention because they stood out for one reason or another.

Amodex is by far the best product I've ever used to get paint and ink stains off my hands. I don't ever want to be without it. Amodex is a family owned company and I got to visit with two of the family members: Beverlee and Marica. Can I just say I love them? I truly do, they're incredible women!

Mauricio Velez in the Hemptique booth taught me more about hemp than I probably wanted to know! I honestly had no idea how strong hemp is but now that I know I will be binding all of my books with hemp rather than waxed linen.

Did you know that you can buy hemp paper? And there are crocheted and knitted items made with hemp that are as soft as cotton but much stronger and heavier. Plus hemp is available in any Pantone color. There's just no reason not to use it.



Casting and mold making really caught my eye for some reason so I was drawn to the ComposiMold booth where Stan and Shawn were showing off their heat and pour mold making compound that is reusable. Let me repeat that. It's REUSABLE! I kid you not. You make a mold, use it all you want to and when you're finished with that mold and don't need it anymore you just stick it in the microwave to melt it down so you can make a different mold from the same material. And as if that isn't awesome enough there is also a ComposiMold YouTube channel. I knew I liked these guys!

Go ahead, ask me about frontal polymerization, I dare ya. Thanks to Dr. John Pojman I can now hold my own when the topic comes up at dinner parties. I could have visited with Dr. Pojman all day long without losing interest for a single minute, and y'all know how tiny my attention span is. His company is called Pojman Polymer Products or 3P...which makes him the 3P CEO. Get it?? And if that isn't delightfully cheesy enough for you he also rocks a bow tie and boasts the world's largest collection of pocket protectors. Plus I repeatedly called him Mr. Pojman because I didn't realize he was a Ph.D. and he didn't correct me one single time. Walter White wishes he could be as cool as this chemist! 

Pojman Polymer Products makes 3P QuickCure Clay which is a little tub of magic. You can mold with it or you can mold from it. You expose one end of your clay piece to a heat source and within a matter of seconds the remainder of the piece starts generating its own heat so after a minute or two the entire piece has literally baked itself.

After his demonstration I went back to the CCB booth and told Anita what I had just witnessed. That girl rarely abandoned her post at the demo table but she literally dropped everything and went to visit Dr. Pojman. When she came back we both agreed that we love him.

I will have more demonstrations of these products coming up soon but in the mean time I hope you will visit their websites, subscribe to their YouTube channels, follow them on Facebook, etc. They all get the Shannon Green Stamp of Approval...whatever that's worth!

One company did not get the coveted Shannon Green Stamp of Approval. I'm mentioning it here with the hope that they will see this and take steps to improve their customer relations. There was a product in the Filofax booth that caught my eye and the nice girl in the booth gave such a good demonstration of it that I was dying to feature it in a video where I could encourage 20K of my closest friends to rush out and buy this product with me.

I asked Demo Girl if she would mind repeating her whole speil so I could film it to share on YouTube. She was delighted to do just that but felt like she should run it by the boss first. That was totally understandable so I waited while she asked The Boss in the back of the booth. I didn't think there would be a problem since no one ever turns me down when I ask to feature a mass produced retail product. Videos are often prohibited in stores that sell handcrafted items but manufacturers of mass produced items usually jump at the chance for free advertising and promoting.

That wasn't the case with Filofax. The Boss apparently was not "the boss" and felt like he needed to call corporate before giving me permission to make a video where I tell people to go buy their product. Okay seriously?! My jaw literally dropped open and I was speechless for maybe a whole second or two. When I recovered I told him that was fine and maybe I would stop back by later. I had no intention of doing so and I did not. I have no desire to endorse a company who has created an atmosphere where the person in charge of their trade show booth can't grant permission for free advertising on social media without asking corporate first. That's just messed up.

Filofax is one F-word you won't be hearing on my YouTube channel.