Thursday, 30 April 2015

Amy Tangerine's Creative handbook - post 2 x

Today I would love to share with you some more details from Amy and Jamie's creative handbook. The first post can be found here.

The next few pages in the creative handbook are focused on on finding inspiration for creativity and actually doing something with the things which inspire us. For me that may be a picture I take, words I hear or see as in a quote or music lyrics, a class I do or finding inspiring creative people across the web.

The first page, practice 3, I am sharing is all about getting those little bits of creativity off Pinterest boards and into the world. I am one of those people, I bet some of you are the same, who find amazing things to pin on those boards but never actually do something with them. Go on hands up who's done that?

SO this first page focuses you onto putting some of those ideas into actionable ideas. Here is an image of the whole page completed.

So the top section of the page is an area for putting down those inspiring images you've found and pinned or you may have cut them from magazines. I chose a few images from my boards which would focus my planning. The first image on the top left is a scrapbook page by Rukristin. She blogged about this layout here and I absolutely loved her idea of stamping speech bubbles as a background feature and then stamping further coloured bubbles with journalling inside. I really Kristin's scrapbooking style and follow her work avidly. The next few pictures are of patchwork quilts, or segments of them. I am so, so wanting to try my hand but I get put off by the mammoth cutting and stitching sections  and just wish I could go straight to the finished quilt. I truly want to give it a go so I thought it would be a great start to have these images there in front of me. Next I found a minibook image to keep me inspired on the one I am making at the moment about my trip to Lacock. I love making minibooks so I wanted to maintain my focus there too.

The lower section is all about quotes. I have pinboards full of them and I do actually use them alot in my personal journal. I chose just a few I really, really love. I get so much inspiration from painting and art and the quote from Henry Matisse is simple but effective.......

Creativity takes courage

Yes sometimes it does and I wanted to make a point of letting it out there.

The larger poem by Emily Dickinson is one not so much about creativity but about being an individual who feels and can be buffeted by life but has the hope and strength to keep going no matter what. I often think that creativity comes in waves and for me that is ok. I can't be creative 100% of the time, however I can still be a creative soul. The small quote at the bottom is a reference back to my OLW 2015 Light and keeps me thinking about that as I move through each day.

The next page in the handbook is quite an emotional one....................

This page explores all the negative things we all think about ourselves as creative people but also the positive and empowering ideas of creativity. For this page, Amy and Jamie encourage you to write down or doodle all those issues which may impede our creativity and all the things which encourage it.
I wrote down on the negative side ideas like:

  • I have no originality
  • I'm not good enough
  • lack of time
  • not having talent

Then the very therapeutic part is you cross all those ideas out, in my case in big red paint. I also found a lovely quote which said:

No matter what they tell you, you don't have to 
stay within the lines

I thought this was a perfect thing to cover up all that negativity, don't you?

Now for the positive side. Here is your chance to really sell yourself as a creative person. I wrote out lots of inspiring words like amazing, incredible, inspiration just to lay on that positivity thick and fast.

I also found a wonderful definition for a word called Meraki meaning to do something with soul, creativity and love; to put something of yourself into your work.

Isn't that beautiful? I genuinely do put alot of myself into the scrapbooking layouts I make, not just the thought, time, taking pictures, choosing the items but the journalling which is often so personal and intimate.

I really went to town on the positivity using alot of bright colours, some lovely quotes and images and I genuinely think this page is going to maintain me through alot of life, not just my creativity.

I wonder if any of you were inspired by my first post to get Amy and Jamie's handbook and have a go? What do you think of these pages and what negative and positive ideas do you have about your creativity?

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Two on Tuesday x

Hello and welcome to ..............

I'm keeping it brief today as it's been a bit busy around here.

So firstly I'd love to share with you a little video my friend Jackie shared on Facebook. She's a London Hospital nurse too and found this amazing film on YouTube from the 1960s. There is no sound but it gives a glimpse into nursing at The London back then and more looks at the fab uniform we had.

Secondly, the lovely Will from Bright Bazaar shared some new pictures he's recently acquired by a photographer called Gray Malin. My fave picture on the site so far is one called "Heart balloons" and can be found here. It combines several beautiful elements for me:

  • balloons,
  • colours of the rainbow and 
  • the SEA


What interesting pictures/videos have you spied this week?

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Two on Tuesday x

Hello Tuesday and welcome to another two choices for your delectation.

For this weeks choices, I have a feeling you might need to turn off your social media, shut the curtains, get yourself a big glass of vino and a massive bar of chocolate because this post is going to make you want to do things you never imagined. And you seriously do not want your partner, children or any other people walking into this fantasy.

May I present to you 50 Shades of..............................

Stationery x

Now firstly, do you think I have a paper problem? Now, I am a memory keeper so by necessity I have to have paper. But obviously, some people seem to think I have some kind of fetish which has led to my friend Roz, thanks Roz, sending me this I warn you this is 50 shades of stationery so make sure you're prepared..........

Ooooh, come to mama beautiful paper with sea paintings yummy................

and colour overload with these gorgeous pencils................lickable!! Seriously, did you know there that many beautiful colours? Me neither and just imagine having those in your craftroom. Eeny, meeny..............

Secondly, it gets WORSE!

Now I know I love all  stationery, but I LOVE notebooks above and beyond anything else, can't get enough of them. I walk down the aisles of WHSmith, Paperchase and a variety of other local shops just to gaze adoringly at them, touch them and yes sometimes I even smell them! In fact, I'm sure I do my best Golum impersonation and go all "My precious" over them sometimes.

But this week I discovered, oh sweet joy, that I am not alone in my desire to possess said notebooks. Yes, Charlotte,  a regular contributor to ALO an online lifestyle magazine, wrote this post in celebration of people like myself and it had links to some more lickable notebooks like this...............

or this beauty from Fox and Star

Yes I know it's not a notebook but it is bunting washi tape.

And finally take your pick of these beautifully recycled notebooks, not cheap but perfection.............

one for everyday of the week and some to spare from Undercover.

I feel the need to lie down now. With my notebooks lol.

So where are your fave places to buy those oh so necessary stationery pieces?  

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Amy Tangerine's Creative handbook - post 1 x

image owned by Amy Tangerine

If you love blogging, and I do, then you possibly have this lovely lady's blog either in your Bloglovin or blogging feed. This is Amy Tangerine and she is an incredibly talented and inspiring creative lady.
A couple of months back, she and her friend Jamie Waters posted a YouTube video which introduced the new Creative Handbook you can see in the picture above with Amy. In order to get this freebie all you had to do was fill out your name and email here. So I did and hey presto it was printed out. Now I have had a bit of a creativity hiatus and only got it out again last week. But it has been a really great push to reignite my creativity.

So this post, and subsequent posts, will demonstrate my personal journey with this handbook, and I will show you what I have created within it.

Within the handbook, are 5 practices which Amy uses herself to inspire her creativity. These are discussed in detail inside and there are pages laid out for you to vent your creative juices. The first practice is all about looking at the handbook as a side project to all those big projects we all have, and to dip into it regularly and create something fresh.

The first page to play with is this one...........................

In the video to accompany this page, Amy and Jamie use watercolour paints to add decoration, so I treated myself to some for £1.99 at my local outlet. This first page, I first decorated with a simple border and some stamping. I added washi tape to the mid-section. The writing above the top box is a basic statement you are asked to make.....................

"I plan to create more, live more, have fun, spend time in the sunshine, love, live and enjoy"

I thought this would be a simple but to the point mantra for where I wanted to be over the next few weeks, and to write it down felt like I was making an actual admission of intention.

The box below is an ideas box where I basically brainstormed ideas and doodled. In this area I have written about friendship, blogging, journaling, writing, memory keeping, photography and all manner of things I am doing or planning to do this year. 

In the bottom two boxes, I simply added in my reading goal for 2015 and some words and images for my One Little word - Light. I love how this page came together and it is so bright and cheerful, everytime I look at it, it makes me smile and remember my goals.


The second practice in the handbook, is about journalling your intentions. Amy explains how she journals and doodles in a notebook before she gets up each morning.

This page was completed one evening, in fact, and I wrote my three prompts :

  • make sure I spend time creating
  • be open to new inspiration
  • find fun in friendships

I find inspiration in so many places, from walking around my garden, reading, listening to music, watching the sky and dreaming so I felt these simple statements gave a flavour of that. Friendships are important to me, both on the Internet and in the real world, so I wanted to make a statement about that too. I find a great deal of inspiration from my friendships and felt this was important to remember.

This page is mainly writing, some washi tape and doodling. The writing is fairly personal and is a free writing exercise Amy suggested to get the imagination going. I found it really helpful in focusing me onto this handbook and what I aimed to achieve.

If you would like to watch the videos which accompany these pages by Amy and Jamie, they are below...........

Is anyone else working through this handbook? How are you finding it helps you?

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Two on Tuesday x

Welcome to another edition of Two on Tuesday, a post sharing things I have found and loved in the past week.

Firstly, a little indoor gardening. For many years I have had houseplants, they are beautiful and I love to see greenery and the odd flower in the dull winter months and when I lived in the flat having no garden it was my chance to get all green fingered. At the moment my plants are having a fun time growing new leaves so I am all about the plants. So colour me happy when I found this lovely post about making your own terrarium.

A mini greenhouse with little to no upkeep and hours of beauty to watch. What is not to love about this idea?

Secondly, a book review and recommendation. I have been busily reading through my pile of books and last week finished this book.......

This is my review from Goodreads.............

I came to this book after reading a brief synopsis in a magazine and thought I'd give it a go. The story centres around a grieving family - Sarah, Angus and their daughter Kirstie aged 7. Kirstie is the surviving twin after her identical twin sister Lydia died in an accident. The family are about to move to an isolated island near Skye when Kirstie tells her mother that she isn't Kirstie, she's Lydia and they made a mistake. Kirstie died. This sets off a chain of events which will significantly affect the whole family.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect, a ghost story, a thriller, a crime novel or an emotionally tugging drama. What I got was a little of all those. The story moves forwards and back seen from the perspectives of primarily Sarah and Angus as they try to make sense, if you can, of losing one of their daughters and being face everyday with the fact that they still have another daughter who is in great distress, as are they. The sense of isolation of all the characters is portrayed brilliantly, communication is a central part of the story, or lack of it in this case. Everybody has secrets they can't, or won't share. 

The beautiful Scottish islands are described perfectly and the imagery is beautiful. The island is literally cutoff everyday by the tide and the family rely on a boat to go across to Skye. The ideas of local folklore and Gaelic lyrical language are also highlighted in the book. The final pages of the story kept me on the edge of my seat and guessing until the very last lines. I would recommend this book to anyone.

Would you/have you made a terrarium? and what books are you giving 5 stars?

Thursday, 9 April 2015

One photo, twenty words x

Welcome to One photo, 20 words in association with the lovely Abi. Yesterday I went to meet friends at a beautiful National Trust property in Devon and this is my favourite shot.........

Just 4 lovely, little people picnicking on their rug totally unaware of Aunty Jo snap, snapping away as they ate

Oh to be a child again.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Two on Tuesday x

Hello and I hope you all had a lovely Easter weekend, didn't eat too much chocolate but enjoyed yourselves whatever you and your family did.

Today I would like to share with you two things which I found interesting and useful to me.

Firstly a post on self-love and dealing with rejection in life. I have been dipping in and out of Marc and Angel's blog for a while now and have really found their thoughts on life and its challenges very, very helpful. I haven't said anything much on here about my personal life recently but I have been using an online dating site to try and meet a life partner. One of the things I have always found incredibly tough is the feelings of overwhelming rejection and pain in dating. It is something I have struggled with since I had my first crush as a teenager. The article I am sharing today is not giving you the answers to everything but I found it quite uplifting and more positive than some of the advice you are offered. You know stuff about fish and sea or the they're not the one for you malarky. You can read the full post here.

Secondly, I do have rather an unhealthy love for the minibook of a scrapbooking variety. After the number of pictures I took at Lacock the other week, I can feel a special mini coming on for that occasion.

This month the lovely team at Write Click Scrapbook are having a whole month, yes a whole month, focusing on the minibook. So far I'm loving this travel album by Christina C.

I love the beautiful wood veneer globe cover and the pink and gold numbered tabs.

And this accordian pocket album by Jenny Larson who used a premade album by K and Co.

Having places to put extra journalling and photos in is something I love doing with my minibooks so I'll be looking out for ideas to do just that too.

What exciting things have you found to inspire you this past week?