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1  Re: Altered Puzzle Pieces, Round 8 Gallery in The Swap Gallery by vincentvanbuck on: April 15, 2014 07:22:36 PM
QUILLING!  What a perfect embellishment for puzzle pieces!  Consider that idea officially stolen for future rounds  Wink

I got pieces today from hazelly:

Oh, the craftiness!  I had some images like this posted on my Pinterest, I'm so glad hazelly went with a crafty theme!  They look wonderful, thank you so much.  Smiley
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2  Re: Altered Puzzle Pieces, Round 8 Gallery in The Swap Gallery by vincentvanbuck on: April 14, 2014 06:49:46 PM
Two sets to share today.  First up, from seeuudee:

She said that initially she struggled finding inspiration with the theme (after working on themes for 10 different partners, I totally understand!), until she found this awesome Mayan-themed set of images.  They're wonderful, seeuudee, thanks so much!  She also sent copies of all the other images from the set, so I have lots of cool extras to play with.   Cheesy

Next are pieces from smmarrt:

El Hongo!  It looks kind of flat in the picture, but the mushrooms are actually painted wood cut-outs, they really pop against the background.  The pic also doesn't really do justice to the pretty background color on La Corona.  Thank you both so much, ladies!
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3  Re: Altered Puzzle Pieces, Round 8 Gallery in The Swap Gallery by vincentvanbuck on: April 07, 2014 06:56:39 PM
Lovely pieces!  I especially like the comic text and the orange "J" monogram.

I have a couple more sets to share for my Loteria puzzle, first from sammylouise40:

A traditional "La Luna", and a non-traditional "La Xtabay" -- I love them both!  I had never heard of la xtabay before, but a quick Google search filled me in on a very interesting legend!  Great choice sl40, I think it is going to end up being one of my favorite pieces.   Smiley

And then, from Golden Sunshine:

Another La Luna (very fitting for her!  Group mates will understand what I mean  Wink ) and a La Rosa.  I would've never thought to add the colors of the Mexican flag, so smart!  Thank you for some more awesome pieces, ladies.

Gosh, now I'm feeling the pressure to deliver for my partners!
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4  Re: Craftster vs. Pin Craftalong in Craftalongs by vincentvanbuck on: March 28, 2014 09:13:39 PM
I almost feel silly posting this, because a) it is not a craft at all, and b) it may be super obvious, but I had this light bulb go off, and I was so excited I had to stop what I was doing and implement this immediately!

So, I am one of those people who doesn't own a sewing machine, but still feels a compulsive need to start every trip to the craft store in the fabric aisles.  I have been storing my fabric in plastic drawers on wheels, but storage space in my craft closet is quickly becoming a premium.

Anywho, a couple months ago, I Pinned this idea for using a filing cabinet to organize fabric on hanging file folders:


Which looks great and all, except for the fact that I have no spare filing cabinet at the moment.  As I was going through my pins, though, and came upon this guy again, it suddenly occurred to me that I could put my fabric on wire hangers!  Et voila:

I mean, I know that it is such an obvious thing (in fact, when I bothered just now to actually click on the Pin to the original link, sure enough, the blog posting had this very same idea posted), but what can I say, it didn't occur to me until now.  I actually ran out of wire hangers with a lot of fabric left to go, but I just picked up a load of dry cleaning this week, so more are on the way.  Wink  I have them secured to the hanger with a couple of large paper clips -- seems like they will hold just fine without sliding off the hanger.

As an added bonus, I get to delve into my OCD love of organizing.  Naturally, the fabrics are arranged into sections: first, primarily color patterns (ROYGBIV order, of course), then holiday fabrics hanging chronologically, and finally, themed fabrics alphabetized by topic.

And yes, that is (upside-down) George Washington with abs on that July 4th fabric -- now you know who's buying all those delightfully tacky holiday male pin-up fabrics at Joann.  Kiss
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5  Re: Spring Nerd Battles --March 1, 2014 - May 31, 2014-- Join anytime! in Craftalongs by vincentvanbuck on: March 28, 2014 07:31:42 PM
I can't believe I forgot to post these earlier!

Battle/Challenge: March Flash Mob
Team: Multimedia
Project Name:
Spring needle-felted ATCs
Brief Description: I made these cards for the March Ongoing ATC Swap.
Project Picture:

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6  Re: Altered Puzzle Pieces, Round 8 Gallery in The Swap Gallery by vincentvanbuck on: March 28, 2014 06:55:37 PM
Sweet, I get to post the very first pieces!!!  Grin

I received these two AWESOME little works of art from CDEeeek for my Loteria theme.  They are absolutely perfect, 110% spot-on, exactly what I hoped for!  The theme, the color, the composition, it is all marvelous.  Thanks so much, CDEeeek!

A few months ago, I did a private swap with Luvebuggy99 for the first two pieces of this puzzle (she already knows how much I love these  Wink ):

Eeeeep -- I am so excited for this puzzle!  Cheesy
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7  Re: ONGOING ATC SWAP - MARCH 2014 GALLERY in The Swap Gallery by vincentvanbuck on: March 24, 2014 07:01:22 PM
I love the effect of the lights in the sky against the text backdrop.

I came home to these two lovelies in my mailbox.  First up, from My_RubySlippers for my new Wizard of Oz theme:

I'm in love with the way her foot hangs off the edge of the card!  Thanks so much.

When I opened this Loteria-themed card from cmarion3, I gasped:

It was wrapped in a wax paper sleeve, which made it soooo ghostly and ethereal.  I think it is just PERFECT for the theme, cmarion3, I absolutely love it!  DH was sitting next to me while I opened it, he was very impressed and said it was his favorite card that I've received so far.  Wink

Thank you ladies for these marvelous cards!
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8  February & March 2014 ATCs (pic heavy) in Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) by vincentvanbuck on: March 22, 2014 06:48:06 PM
I've been busy with the Ongoing ATC Swap the last couple of months, and since I'm very proud of many of the cards I made this round, I wanted to take the time to give them their own thread.

This first one depicts a scene from the Japanese folktale "Kaguya-hime" (also known as "The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter").  The image is based on illustrations from the "World Masterpiece Fantasy" series edition -- kind of like the Japanese version of Golden Books (i.e., every Japanese I know under the age of 30 had them as a kid).

Also with a Japanese theme is this origami card.  The front of the card has origami paper glued on, and an origami crane design has been cut out of the center.  The cut-out actually goes all the way through, but I put a black card behind it to help the image stand out in the photo.

This is a Word Puzzle theme card -- the first letter of each mini-picture spells out the mystery seven-letter word.  One can pull up the flap to get a peak of the answer.  Which is...

Along a similar vein is this Harry Potter-themed card featuring a portrait of the Fat Lady (this is before I added the  cut-out window panels):

Looks like some Gryffindors are trying to sneak out past curfew!  (As soon as I saw that book of HP stamps at the post office, I envisioned this project in my head.)

The next card was for a "Hello Kitty as...." theme.  I found an inspiration image on the recipient's Pinterest of a Dia de los Muertos-style Hello Kitty.

I also did a couple of needle-felted cards, both with a spring theme:

And now, on to my favorites.  Wink

blupaisan made an amazing Valentine's Day present for her daughter, which featured (as one of MANY elements) a Richard Scarry aspect.  This immediately took me back to memories of my childhood: whenever my grandmother would come to visit us, the first thing my brother and I would do is sit down with her in the big recliner and have her read the same Richard Scarry book to us.  I went on to make an ATC for blupaisan featuring a scene of my grandmother reading to us, with all of us represented as Scarry characters.  (I'm Lowly Worm!  Cheesy)

I did a couple of yaoi-themed cards based on images from the recipient's Pinterest:

to change your image viewing settings please click here

Last but not least is this Figure Study themed card.

In some ways, it is my very favorite of the whole batch.  I have never been very strong at drawing, and when I first joined the ATC Swaps, I refused to freehand cards, instead tracing or using other mediums to do cards, because I feared that the recipients would be disappointed if they received a free-handed card from me.  But over time, I have been slowly building up my confidence in my drawing, and I feel like I've come a long way.  To think that I've gotten to the point where I can do black-and-white cards (in other words, I can't rely on color, etc. to "cover up" my drawing) is a big deal for me.  In fact, the only cards in this post that were traced were the two yaoi ones, and the origami crane (for the sake of achieving straight lines).  I am looking forward to continue improving my drawing skills in the coming months, especially once summer starts.

Thanks for looking!
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9  Re: Spring Nerd Battles --March 1, 2014 - May 31, 2014-- Join anytime! in Craftalongs by vincentvanbuck on: March 22, 2014 06:05:44 PM
I've been working mostly in ATCs for the Ongoing Swap this month, so I don't really have much to fit the prompts at the moment.  I want to make sure and get my entry in for the Battle Royale before I forget, however.

Battle/Challenge: March Battle - Black & White
Team: Multimedia
Project Name:
Pencil Drawing ATCs
Brief Description: I love color.  I mean, just absolutely love it and want it bold and bright and EVERYWHERE.  That's one of the reasons I got interested in painting -- I was never a big fan of drawing, but adding the element of color gave me something to focus on other than my lack of drawing skills.   Wink  But over the past couple of months, I have been really working on my drawing skills, and for the first time ever, I started producing works in black and white!  I actually went out and bought a set of drawing pencils, and I love using them.  I hope the practice I get in shading in B&W will carry over to my color work.
Project Picture:

The first image was hand-drawn using a source photo I found online, and the second was traced from an image off of the recipient's Pinterest.

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to change your image viewing settings please click here
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10  Re: HP Craftalong ~Spring Semester 2014~ *JOIN ANYTIME* in Craftalongs by vincentvanbuck on: March 22, 2014 04:09:37 PM
Firstly, I have to send out a general "hooray" for everyone's wonderful projects!  I have been following along, but things have been busy with work lately, so Craftster time at home has been limited.  Most of my crafting this month has been for the Ongoing ATC Swaps, and now that my partners have received, I can finally start posting classes!

Class/Challenge/House Pride: Alchemy
House: Ravenclaw
Project Name:
"Kaguya-hime's Birth" ATC
Brief Description: The Japanese folktale "Kaguya-hime" (also known as "The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter") tells the story of a princess from the Moon who is reborn on Earth and adopted by a kindly old man when he discovers her while chopping down bamboo one day.  Appropriately, Princess Kaguya's swaddling clothes are red and gold, re-emphasizing the connection with the phoenix.  This particular ATC is based off of illustrations from the "World Masterpiece Fantasy" series -- kind of like the modern Japanese equivalent of the Golden Books, every Japanese person I know under 30 grew up with these as a kid.
Project Picture:

Class/Challenge/House Pride: Arithmancy
House: Ravenclaw
Project Name:
"C'mere Babe" ATC
Brief Description: The number 8 symbolizes love, and with love in the air as spring begins, this card captures a tender moment in a budding relationship (perhaps from some unexpected characters!)  Wink
Project Picture:

Class/Challenge/House Pride: Astronomy
House: Ravenclaw
Project Name:
"Male Torso Figure Study" ATC
Brief Description: I too have long been dissatisfied with my drawing ability.  When I first joined the Ongoing ATC Swaps, I was too ashamed to try and draw anything free-hand, so I exclusively traced cards and/or worked in other mediums that limited the capacity of my cards to achieve the things I wanted.  Well, this season I have been working hard on my drawing, and I am really proud of the results.  In fact, I have even started abandoning my "safety net" of color, and begun working in black and white pencil drawings!  This figure study card is my first work in that realm, and I am so happy with the way it came out.
Project Picture: (Note - I don't consider this mature at all, but I understand that figure study is not everyone's cup of tea.)

to change your image viewing settings please click here

Edited to Add: This is my first time using the Mature Image tag, I'm not sure why it's not working (the closing tag shows up correctly in the code on my end when I click edit/modify).  Huh  And a few minutes later, without me changing this part of the code, it now seems to be working -- strange indeed!

Class/Challenge/House Pride: History of Magic
House: Ravenclaw
Project Name:
Spring Flower ATC
Brief Description:In my research, I learned that tulips traditionally have a connection with prosperity, and so I imbued this needle-felted card with crafty magic to wish prosperity upon its recipient and all who view it during the new spring season.
Project Picture:

Class/Challenge/House Pride: Potions
House: Ravenclaw
Project Name:
"Reading with Grandma" ATC
Brief Description: As a child, whenever my grandmother came to visit us, the first thing my brother and I did was sit with her in the big rocking chair while she read us the same Richard Scarry book (which only she was allowed to read to us  Smiley).  In this card for blupaisan, I replicated that scene of reading with my grandma from my childhood, but used the Polyjuice Potion to transform us into Richard Scarry characters!  (I am represented by Lowly Worm  Wink)
Project Picture:

Class/Challenge/House Pride: SoAR
House: Ravenclaw
Project Name:
Easter needle-felted ATC
Brief Description: Berkano is associated with spring and fertility, and this card features two folk symbols of the major Spring holiday Easter which also represent fertility -- the rabbit and the egg.
Project Picture:

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