Friday Art Fun! da Vinci-Inspired Sketchbooks

Introduce your child to a famous artist of the Renaissance, while making a fun personalized journal. For the cover, we created crayon resist paintings using a technique that made them look a little like worn parchment. On the inside, we added a bookplate with "mirror-writing".

What You Need

Composition Notebook or (other blank journal)
White paper
Black crayon
Watercolor paints & brush
Mirror-Writing Bookplates (download here)
Books or Websites about Leonardo da Vinci


Make It: Hand-Stamped LOVE Pendant

I enjoyed making and wearing the Hand-Stamped JOY Pendant that I made for the holidays so much, that I thought I'd try to come up with a similar design for Valentine's Day. If you're new to metal-stamping this little washer pendant is a fun beginner's project.

Stamped Valentine's Day Washer Pendant displayed on white lace doily.

Stamped Valentine's Pendant Tutorial

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This little pendant goes together very quickly. Once it's stamped, there's very little to it!

Make It! Kid's Art Portfolio

Hello. Today I am sharing an easy art portfolio made from your child's art, some poster board, and tape or clear contact paper. You might even like to make one for each year. Good times are at the start of a new school year or around your child's birthday. Pick a time that works for you.

Supplies Needed for Kid's Art Portfolio

  • Artwork (for front of portfolio)
  • Solid-color Poster Board (cut to match front)
  • Colored Tape or Clear Contact Paper
  • More Tape or Cloth Bias Tape (for handles)

This project works best with larger flat art pieces. (I recommend 12x18 or larger.) If you don't have one large piece, have your child create a painting or drawing directly on poster board already cut to size or collage several smaller pieces onto some poster board.

Friday Art Fun! Painting with Primary Colors

Hello! Hello! Welcome to Friday Art Fun! I am so glad you're joining me for this new series. For this week, we'll be talking about COLOR.

The primary colors are red, blue and yellow. Those colors can be combined to make the secondary colors. I often like to start an art lesson with a children's book or two on the topic. Two of my favorites about COLOR are White Rabbit's Color Book by Alan Baker and Mousepaint by Ellen Stoll Walsh. Both have delightful illustrations that engage children while teaching them about mixing colors. A sure hit with younger children.

After reading together, provide white paper and red, blue and yellow paint. (For very young children, you don't even need brushes. Choose child-safe finger-paint and finger-painting paper.)

Make It: 3-D Valentine with Heart Bokeh Background

So, if you're like me and still have a tree and holiday lights up, why not get a head start on a fun valentine?! (Disclaimer: I'm not usually very quick to "undeck the halls," but this year I had a reason to keep them up.  We had one last holiday gathering left to host on Saturday...)

Every year I see many versions of a 3-D Photo Valentine, and this year is no exception. I thought I'd share our version with you today.

What You Need
  • Camera & Wide Aperture Lens
  • Heart-shaped Bokeh Filter/Hood (Buy one from PhotoJojo here or make one here)
  • Background Draped with Mini-Lights (a lighted Christmas tree works well)
  • And, if your subject is a child, grab some flowers, a teddy bear, a doll, or anything to stand in while you check settings and take some practice shots. Save your child's patience for the real thing, trust me:)
  • 4x6 print of Your Favorite shot
  • Small scissors or craft knife
  • Valentine Pencil (or other treat for the finished Valentine)
  • Cutting mat or something to protect your work surface

Happy New Year! & Top Posts of 2013

Hello Friends! Happy New Year!!

I hope you all had a lovely holiday week. I took a short break from computer work and blogging for family time. After a nice Christmas Day, we rushed our oldest out the door to return to school for a warm weather basketball trip. We were fortunate enough to schedule vacation to meet at his destination  and see his team in action.

The trip to sunny CA meant a little extra family time between games and a nice break from the MN deep freeze! But despite the cold, I'm happy to be home.

Blogging and social media were new for me last year. I really enjoyed sharing and connecting with such a creative online community! Here are my most viewed posts of 2013:

Rudolph S'mores / Santa Ornament Yarn Craft / Gobble 'em S'mores / Wrap It Up! Printable Rudolph Gift Tags / Make It: Had-Stamped Joy Pendant

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