Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Introducing the Formally Trained Artist and Hidden Treasure Expert that is Sue Smyth

Hello Everyone.
As promised, today I have some very different and special projects to share with you and introduce the Artist behind them.
Sue Smyth is another one of those special people I have come to know over the past 6 years or more. We first worked together, when she was the editor of a magazine that  published my work. We have done trade events, shows, expos and cruises together. We always have fun together and I have spent quite a few hours in her Aladdin's Cave of a studio.
 She is an amazing artist and her work is outstanding. Every art piece she makes must take her hours to create - so much detail in every project, they often end up as a treasure hunt. I call it the "where's Wally" style of scrapbooking. Every time you look you find something new tucked away underneath something else. Sue does layers and layers of mixed media techniques before she even adds all her treasures and precious bits and pieces on top.
I am inspired by her work, it is the "eclectic-ness" of her style that holds so much appeal for me.

I asked Sue to put a bit of a bio together for me.
I am a formally trained artist, in Visual Communications, with a back ground in painting, design and sculpture, I turned to paper crafting later in life when family came along. Some 20 years later I have taught at some of the leading stores around Brisbane, and now teach at 2 major Brisbane stores.  I teach at the Scrapbooking expo in Brisbane each year, and also occasionally teach on Cruises and retreats, and also had the opportunity to demo at CHA in the USA. I have designed for many design teams , including Couture Creations and have been published many times and even Edited, Australian Scrapbook Ideas and Cardmaking in Easy Steps for several years, before moving on to write my own book 3 D Papercraft Projects. The many years of experience creating and teaching in the Scrapboooking and papercrafting world, has led to designing my own paper ranges for Ultimate Crafts, the first being Magnolia Lane in 2016 and Rambling Rose in 2017. I have two distinct styles, with a mixed media painterly side, and a shabby chic layered look that celebrates paper the other.
Sue is an "off the page" expert,  and this wonderful Ladies head is a wonderful example of her eclectic style.

The photo's don't really show the beautiful mixed media base that Sue has painted onto her head before she started the decorating.  
Just look at all the beautiful treasures Sue has fitted onto the top of her head. This is where her Aladdin's cave of a craft room comes into play. She has 100's of jars, tins and containers filled with bits and pieces she has collected over the years to play with. 

Sue also does Canvas - large and small. This one is one of her larger pieces.  If you look carefully at the background you will find heaps of chipboard pieces that Sue has glued on then painted over.  There is just as much work done on the foundation of the canvas as there is on everything she has placed on top.

This photo shows some of the independent pieces Sue has clustered or layered together on top of her canvas. Each piece has to be painted or have a finish put on it before Sue can add them to her canvas. Once everything is on, I am sure Sue goes over the top of every piece adding highlights.

Again you can see more of the pieces used on the canvas.

This is one of Sue's Layouts, you can see her confidant use of colour and strong elements that if not use correctly could over shadow her photo.
But with Sue's background as a Trained Artist, she is able to create a layout that is balanced perfectly and with just the right amount embelishments to keep you wanting to look at it again and again.  

Sue also does amazing Journal covers or Book covers. I had the pleasure of being able to watch her teach a project just like the one above to 50 excited Ladies. Most of them had never done anything like this before. It was great fun watching them come to terms with the whole concept. The joy on their faces as it all came together was wonderful to watch. Sue had all of them working on their cover with just about everyone at a different stage. She kept it all together, encouraging those who needed help, pushing those who were confidant and just having a great time.
 Sue also does "normal" layouts, but always lots of mixed media techniques. Here she has done masking on her background, and random punching around the edges of her layout. Again Sue has added just the right amount of embellishments to layout to create interest but not overpower. The perfect chipboard titles finishes her delightful layout. 

Because Sue has been with us for a while now, I thought I would show you some of her earlier work. I went back through her blog and found these two charming mini canvases. The one above with the Paris theme is a favourite. I love the chipboard gilt frame and Eiffel Tower. But it's the way Sue has added the other chipboard pieces that shows her background in design. It all works so well together and the finish canvas is "Parfait".

This little cutie of a canvas would make the perfect baby boy present.
I love the background Sue has created on her canvas.  She has used textured paste on her chipboard clouds to give them a fluffy feel. The chipboard train is just stunning, it has a vintage feel to it with an almost pearl like finish. Her use of yellow on her sun is just inspiring along with the sequins and metal star. Again an eclectic mix of bits and pieces that Sue with her years of designing has made to work beautifully together.
I am delighted to have Sue back on our team for 2018. I have shown you only a small sample of Sue's work and I am sure you are going to be inspired by what she creates for us this year.
Please feel free to leave Sue a personal welcoming message.
Back tomorrow with another one of our super talented design team ladies.
Thanks for looking

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Introducing the Capturing Precious Family Memories Master that is Karyn Shultz

 Hello Everyone
Today I have the delightful job of  introducing to you all,  the beautiful Karyn Shultz. I have known Karyn for a few years now and she is one of the most genuine and delightful people I know.  I love her work, she does the most charming Project Life, delightful planners and SMASH books. She also is an all rounder when it comes to scrapbooking and mixed media, her cards and layouts have a simplistic feel to them but when you look closely you can see her talent and skill.  I think my favourite Karyn projects are her mini albums. She taught one at  Seriously Scrapbooking's All Day Scrap using Imaginarium Designs chipboard and the feedback we got was amazing. So many of the Ladies were inspired by Karyn's album to make more of them by themselves.

I have a couple of images of  one of her Mini Album so you can see for yourselves just how lovely they are.

This Mini album is one she did for Christmas, aren't the colours lovely and fresh.
Although the colours are quite modern, the mini Book has a vintage feel to it.  You can see why this is one of my favourite Karyn Projects.
I asked Karyn to do a bit of a bio about herself.

I’m a mum to two gorgeous girls (9 and 16) and have an amazing husband who lovingly supports my crafting obsession. I live in the Adelaide Hills in Australia.
I love Scrapbooking, Project Life, Art Journaling, planners, SMASH booking and cardmaking. Crafting allows me to be creative and lets me escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. I love to capture precious family memories on my scrapbooking pages and I love watching my family look though the albums and see their photos and read the journaling.
 I think I should have left out the "Bit", as I am sure you would like to know a little bit more about her. She does live in the Adelaide Hills in a beautiful country town. Karyn has been on many Design teams over the years and has a cupboards full of embellishments, stamps and papers but still can't resist new releases! She has been with Imaginarium Designs for a few years now.

 Karyn quite often uses our chipboard raw, which I love, it makes it look fresh and on a white background can be quite effective. Here Karyn has used it to frame her photo. I love the way she just adds a touch of colour to her backgrounds and retains lots of white space around her photo.

Again another layout with raw chipboard and splatters, Karyn has created three elements to her layout and used the splatters to tie it all together, very cleverly done.

Here Karyn has used quite a few elements on her page and layered them all around her photo. Then used the chipboard to "drag" the main element down the page. The touches of gold adds highlights to an already beautiful layout.

This is another one of Karyn's mixed Media layouts. She has still kept plenty of white space on her layout and the black print paper border really sets it off. A beautiful photo, the perfect chipboard title and chipboard heart finish it off nicely.

This is one of Karyn's more brighter layouts, showing just how versatile she is. Lots of stamping and mixed media techniques shown here. Inking the chipboard black was a great choice, it complements  Karyn's photo really well.

I wish I could share more of Karyn's project life with you. I could do a whole post just on them. I have decided to only show one as I wanted to feature lots of Karyn's other projects to give you a better idea of her style.

Again raw chipboard used perfectly.

 Karyn also makes beautiful cards. She often teaches one layout and 2 cards in one workshop, which is a great idea. Here I have chosen two of her cards, again to show Karyn's wide range of ability's.

 This time she has inked half the chipboard which I think looks amazing. Male cards are always a challenge as you can't fill them with flowers, but these two cards would be perfect for any male teenager.
I am really looking forward to seeing more of Karyn's work this year and am delighted that she is staying with us for 2018.
Please feel free to leave her a personal message - welcoming her back.
See you tomorrow with another Design team Member, this one is quite different from everyone else on our team. All the ladies are amazing and I honestly feel, I have one of the best team in the industry. Everyone has their own style and so talented  They all have the skills and ability to do anything and often do.
It's going to be an amazing year.
Thanks for looking

Monday, January 22, 2018

Introducing the Master of the Vintage and Shabby Style that is Sonia Thomason

Hello Everyone
Today it is my pleasure to introduce the lovely Sonia to you all. Sonia and I first met at a Brisbane Expo when we were both teaching, We would catch up with each other every time we attended the Brisbane show. I have a vague recollection that we may have even been on the same design team (Addicted to Craft) together years and years ago before that. I have admired Sonia's work for a long time now. At the shows we all have to do a teachers display and hers was always full of beautiful vintage and shabby projects - off the page, layouts and more.  I would stand and look at all the detail she included on every page/project. I often though that,  when "I grow up" - I want to scrap like Sonia. I was so delighted when she decided to join our team a few years ago. So now I get to admire Sonia's work every time she shares it with us here at Imaginarium Designs.

I asked Sonia to do a bio about herself.

 Hi everyone, my name is Sonia Thomason and I am delighted to be back with the fabulous Imaginarium Designs team for another year!
I have am married to my very patient husband Kym and we have two gorgeous daughters Alex, 14 and Isabella, 12 who you will generally see as the focus of my projects (mainly because they are a lot more photogenic then me!!)
Like many of you my scrapbooking is my ‘me’ time. My two daughters keep me very busy with all of their activities so it’s scrapbooking that allows me to sit down, take a deep breath and relax for a while.
My style is quite mixed but tends towards the vintage / shabby style. I like to have a go at whatever the current trend may be and then mix it in with my style. It’s always fun to have a go at something different and move out of your comfort zone!!
I have designed for a few different manufacturers over the years and was a 2016 Scrapbooking Memories Master. I look forward to sharing my projects with you featuring the gorgeous Imaginarium Designs products over the coming year.

Sonia's Vintage style is shown here to great effect. She has done some fussy cutting and layering on her page, two gorgeous photos of her daughters and a chipboard title finish this beautiful layout.
I love anything vintage and miniature and Sonia has combined this perfectly in these three beautiful tags. I just love them all. The little embellishments Sonia has added are just the right size. There is a real skill to doing miniatures and here Sonia shows just what a master she is. 

 Then just when you think you have her worked out, she does something like the page above, just show that she can do anything and is comfortable doing a bright mixed media project as she is doing vintage or shabby. I just love this page. You can still see Sonia's style showing through. 

Beautiful photo's can really help a page look amazing.  These photos are just perfect and Sonia has created a lovely vintage layout to set them off. They just pop off the page and the chipboard title she has chosen adds a lovely touch.

Sonia mentioned in her post featuring this layout that  the doesn't like working on kraft as a background colour. She really loved the challenge and was very happy with the finish layout.  It does look amazing and she has done a very special background, adding lots of mixed media elements. I love the way she has created two parts to her layout and made sure that they work together. I admire anyone who can do this.

This is a beautiful example of Sonia's shabby style, It does look stunning and I love the way she has clustered her flowers and chipboard to create a wreath on her images head. 

This one is my favourite, Sonia has done a layout on herself. It has a vintage background and a lovely shabby element around her photo. I love the way she has layered everything under her photo.  There is so much to look at but the layout still retains a simple elegant feel to it.
Everything Sonia does is just perfect and I am eagerly looking forward to seeing more beautiful vintage and shabby projects from Sonia. I hope she also does some more of her Mixed Media pages as well.
Please feel free to leave Sonia a personal message welcoming here back onto the team for 2018.
See you tomorrow with another Introduction.
thanks for looking

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Introducing the Superlative "Artsy" Artist that is Solange Marques.

Hello Everyone.
Today I get to introduce another mixed media master to you all. Solange and I go way back.  The first time we met was when we were both on the Graphic 45 Design team together quite a while ago. I loved her work then and the way she used mixed media products on her layouts and projects before anyone else in main stream scrapbooking was. Her work often has a whimsical feel to it and she is not afraid to use strong colours and interesting designs. She often blends her photos into her layouts by painting around them making them part of the page. I love her work, it is so different from anyone else. She really is an Artsy Artist.
Solange has been on our team since 2012. So  I went back through my folders and found some of the very first projects she ever did for us.

This is one of the first projects she ever did for us in 2012. It is still beautiful and has not dated in any way. This is the sign of a true artist, most of us change over the years or follow trends which can sometimes date our work. Solange has stayed true to her own style and this layout is a classic Solange project.

 This mini canvas was a project Solange did for us in 2014. You can see how she uses different mixed media products on her projects. You can also see what I mean by a whimsical look and strong colours.
I asked Solange to do a blurb on herself.

Hi, my name is Solange Marques.
I am from Brazil and I'm in love with a scrapbook since 2004.I am married to John for over 34 years and have five children: Camila (32), Alexandre (31), Bruno (28), Gabriela (22) and Miguel (17). We also have three grandchildren: Clara (9) ,Samuel (6), and Gustavo (1 month).They are always present in my creations.
I graduated in Architecture and Fine Arts (perhaps that explains my huge passion for paint and their constant presence in my projects.
I've worked in a bank as a jewelry appraiser for 27 years, but now I am retired and I can create in full time!
In a scrap I love mixing techniques, mainly involving paints and textures (watercolor, acrylic paint, modeling paste and a lot of mediums). I consider myself a mixed media artist and I love the artsy
One of Solange's whimsical layouts, again she has used strong colours  and blended her photos into her page. It's very clever and Solange is a master at this again I love the clean lines and the simplicity to her work.

Solange also does canvas/book covers and the one above is a great example of Solanges ability to do all styles of scrapbooking. This is one of her more grungy projects
Then for something different Solange also is a master a Shabby Chic. It is not often you have an artist that can do so many different styles. She really is in a league of her own. These three projects are just beautiful.

This layout again shows the way Solange works her photos into her backgrounds. It is so clever and I would love her to do a tutorial on how she makes it all work. She has used our flourish chipboard to create a wave effect and a frame to draw your eye to the photo. A couple of our butterflies finish the page beautifully.

Again another whimsical layout where Solange has used a photo of herself. She has added chipboard feathers to create interest around the nests on her layout. Lots of beautiful elements on this lovely layout.

Another layout on herself with lots of chipboard. Every piece has had a different finish to it.

I love this set of whimsical boxes It looks like a circus train full of performing animals just waiting for a train to take them on their journey.  Again lots of beautiful chipboard in each box.  
Every project shown here is a classic example of Solange's ability to do turn her hand to any style and make it work. It has been a privilege  to have her on our design team for such a long time and we are delighted that she is staying with us again this year.
Please feel free to leave a comment for Solange  welcoming her to our team for 2018.
I will be back tomorrow with another team member to welcome.

thanks for looking

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Introducing the Master of Mixed Media and Layering that is Sandi Spink

Hello Everyone
Where has this week gone - I was suppose to have introduce Sandi to you all on Thursday,  but I seem to have lost a couple of days sitting on the floor sorting out boxes of chipboard, cutting 100's of pieces from our new release collection and doing up  heaps of prize packs ready to give away. More about that later on this month. Not to mention that it has been over 40 degrees C here in Adelaide for the past 3 days and again today. Which for anyone on the other side of the world is over 100 degree F. Just plain too hot to do too much. Anyway no more complaining.
Back to the amazing and super talented Sandi.
I think I have met Sandi - once, but I have know her for a few years now. She lives in country SA near the coast in a beautiful country town.
Not only is she another super talented all around scrapbooker, Sandi is an amazing photographer and shares some of her work on facebook.

 I just love the ones she took at her local beach.

I asked Sandi to put together a bit of a Bio about herself.

Sandi is a mum of 2 daughters and Nana of 2 beautiful grandchildren and her day job is working with children at an Early Learning Centre in Millicent. Craft has always been a huge part of her life, everything from knitting, sewing and crocheting , bear design and making just to name a few. Encouraged by a friend she started scrapbooking about 8 yrs ago but was talked into entering challenges around 5yrs ago. Since her children have moved out on their own she now has a cr...aft room that has been overtaken over by scrapbooking supplies.Sandi says that being a Design Team member is her opportunity to share her creative flair to not only challenge herself but develop techniques and provide others with the inspiration to think outside of the box. Whenever possible she take on the opportunity to attend workshops of a range of scrapbooking artists to develop her skills and learn about new products. As a very keen photographer there are lots of photos to scrap, any excuse to scrap she reckons so when going camping, the scrapbooking supplies and cameras are packed first; scrapbooking with her camping buddy ‘Scramping’ is one of Sandi's favourite past times.
 I can just picture Sandi in a tent scrapbooking on a card table by candle light late into the night. 
Sandi's scrapbooking shows she is a master of the mixed media art, she confidently uses lots of strong colours, layers upon layers and lots of elements on her projects

Just look at this layout, so much on the page, but the important bit - the photo is still the focus. A beautiful grungy layout and an excellent example of Sandi's work

This project is amazing, Sandi gave me only one photo of her project and I was intrigued as to how she did it. I went back through her blog until I found the post were she featured this as her Imaginarium Designs project. It is a page that Sandi created in her handmade journal book. She used Lindys Stamp Gang spays, a black watercolour pencil, book pages and a selection of our chipboard Alpha's.

 You can see the chipboard Alphas in the background.

Sandi glued the chipboard Alpha randomly onto her journal page then covered each one with torn book pages using a matte transparent medium. Once it had dried, Sandi sprayed ink into a palette and using a water spray bottle and a large water brush, added the sprayed ink onto the pages in layers. She dried each layer as she went along. Sandi's journal page is a double page and is segmented using a black watercolour pencil and shading the lines with a bit of water to create the eight sections you can see. Very cleverly done as when I first saw the photo, that's what I thought Sandi had done, 8 little panels joined together, so it wasn't until I found the post she did showing this project, that I found out it was a double page and the "panels" were put on after.

Sandi used a  honeycomb die from Tim Holtz to cut out her photo. she covered the hexagon shapes out of our Honeycomb chipboard and Loolabelles' nested hexagons to compliment the photo shape. The title 'Got the travel bug' and 'oh yeah' were painted with acrylic paint

I love this layout of Sandi's. The way she has layered up all her elements is a lesson is the art of adding a heap of bits and pieces and making it all work. I just love the drips and splatters along with her background. All Sandi needed to do was add the perfect title and photo to finish.

This layout shows how two elements can work on one layout. The space around each one helps to make them pop off the page. Sandi has used another one of her beautiful photos for this layout and a perfect phrase.

While looking through Sandi's blog for the information I needed for her journal page, I came across this one. I love the simplicity of this layout. Sandi used Lindy's stamp gang spray inks for her background. A stamp from Fiona Paltridge complements out chipboard Feather.
The arrow chipboard Sandi  covered with Silver Vera Color ink and then embossed with Tinby Metallic Melts.

The piechart chipboard was coated with the blue Lindy's spray which Sandi had left to dry out considerably in a palette to concentrate the colour and make it thicker to paint with.
As you can see, there is a lot to Sandi's creative style, I look forward eagerly to seeing what Sandi creates for us this year.
Please feel free to leave a personal message for Sandi to welcome her back to our team for 2018
I will be introducing another talent design team member tomorrow.
See you soon