Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Magazines for sale! Somerset and more

Wednesday, May 2, 2012
I am downsizing my art room and trying to drum up some cash to reroof our family room.

I will gladly combine shipping and you have your choice of 1st class, flat rate priority, or parcel post. Please see to calculate postage to your area. Each magazine weighs 12-14 ounces.

I have the following magazines for sale.

New condition

Somerset Studio issues:

May/June 2011
March/April 2011
January/February 2011
July/August 2010
May/June 2010
March/April 2009

Retail $7.99 $4 each

Other Stampington magazines:

Belle Armoire July/August 2010 Retail $7.99 $4

Somerset Life July/August 2010
Somerset Workshop Autumn 2011
Art Journaling Winter 2011
Sew Somerset Summer 2010
Somerset Holidays & Celebrations 2009

Retail $14.99 $8 each

Other magazines:

Cloth Paper Scissors January/February 2001 retail $7.99 $3.50

Quilting Arts February/March 2009 retail $7.99 $3.50

Quilting Arts Stitch Spring 2010 retail $14.99 $8

Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts Holiday 2010 retail $14.99 $8

Making Magazine June 2011 Retail $12.50 $7

Martha Stewart Holiday Magazine 2009 Retail $6.95 $5

Filati Handknitting Editions 42 & 44 Retail $9.95 $6 each


Sunday, April 8, 2012


Sunday, April 8, 2012
What does Sunday look like at your house?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Journaling and Healing

Wednesday, March 21, 2012
I am currently working on a project involving visual journaling as a healing tool. I am looking for contributors, examples (both photos and anecdotes), journalers who would like to take part. If this fits you, give me a shout at burdgurl at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Art Lab for Kids 
52 Creative Adventures in Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, Paper, and Mixed Media – For Budding Artists of All Ages
By Susan Schwake

Trim: 8.25 x 8.75
Page Count: 144
Illustrations: 275
Format: Flexibound
SRP: $22.99US/$24.99CAN/ £15.99UK
ISBN-13: 978-1-59253-765-5
ISBN-10: 1-59253-765-0
Pub Date: February 1, 2012
From the Quarry press release:
"Art Lab for Kids will bring out your own creative style and voice with 52 fun, refreshing, and creative art projects that are great for children and set into weekly lessons. The exercises include drawing, painting, printmaking, paper, and mixed media. Such open-ended lessons as these can be explored over and over – with different results each time! Each lesson is inspired by the work of a contemporary artist, including:

Rebecca Emberley
Lisa Congdon
Megan Bogonovich
Amy Rice
Georgia O’Keefe
Chuck Close
And author, Susan Schwake

Colorful photographs illustrate the step-by-step process of how different people using the same lesson will yield different results, bringing out each artist’s personal style. Great for children and their parents who wish to explore their artistic sides!

This is the perfect book for creative families, friends, and community groups and works as lesson plans for both experienced and new art teachers. Children of all ages and experience levels will enjoy these engaging exercises!

Susan Schwake is an art instructor in her own art school, where she has created her own curriculum and offers workshops and retreats most every day of the year with her adjunct teaching staff of three. Her vision to teach and share art on her own terms has grown into artstream studios, which includes a contemporary gallery, and a full media design firm. Susan has curated over 70 shows in her gallery and 50 shows of children’s work in her local area. She lives in Rochester, NH. Visit her online at and"

Many of you may not know that I have an after-school art program for elementary age kids. We meet once a week to work in our visual journals, try new art and craft techniques and generally just have a an limit-free space to explore our creativity.

So when Quarry Books emailed me a press release for Art Lab for Kids and asked if I would like to review I jumped at the chance. After three years with a lot of the same students I’m always looking for new lessons to spark their inner artist.

Art Lab for Kids is the latest in Quarry’s Lab Series of books that include:
Drawing Lab for Mixed-Media Artists by Carla Sonheim
Collage Lab by Bee Shay
Print & Stamp Lab by Traci Bunkers
Jewelry Lab by Melissa Manley
And coming in December 2012:
Drawing Comics Lab by Robyn Chapman

The book is divided into 6 units: How to Use this Book and Make Art with Others, Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, Paper, and Mixed Media. The first unit covers how to set up a studio, a master list of supplies and tools, setting the stage for creativity and so on. Units 2 through 5 each then contain 10-11 “labs” that explore a project within a certain medium. Schwake says, “The Labs are set up loosely to build skills upon the previous ones; however, you may begin anywhere. Each Lab is a stand-alone project.”

Each lab starts with a “Think First” section explaining what you’ll get from that lesson and a helpful hint or two. A materials list is included as well as detailed instructions and clear photographs for each step. Then students are encouraged to “Go Further” with different ways to use the technique they learned. The lab concludes with a “Meet the Artist” section that highlights information about the artist who contributed that particular lesson. Most of them also include quotes from the artists about how and where they get inspiration, something I find endlessly fascinating.

As someone who has been making art for over 25 years I didn’t find any groundbreaking techniques. But (and this is a big one) the lessons are so nicely put together and illustrated that this book is a must for any creative kid. Many of them will be new to those just starting out and occasionally one of the labs puts an interesting spin on a classic standby. Once set up, most of them can be done without a lot of supervision. Also, there are times that I am just plain stuck for an idea and I know that this will be the book I pull off the shelf first to help me.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Wednesday, February 29, 2012
What I'm working on lately. :)

Monday, February 6, 2012

Easy Blogging

Monday, February 6, 2012
So these aren't "picture perfect" and tweaked to within an inch of their life. I thought I might try just blogging from my iPhone to get back into the groove.

Since I like seeing what other artists buy at the bookstore, these are my recent acquisitions.

Several art books, a couple craft books, some mags and, of course, some new moleskins. Oh, see that Art Lab for Kids? That was a gift from my friends over at Rockport Publishing. Can't wait to dive into it and use it with my art class!

Friday, January 27, 2012

People Ask the Darndest Things

Friday, January 27, 2012
Questions from the inbox:

If money wasn't a factor, would you get plastic surgery? Probably, but I’m not telling what for.

I am just setting up a blog and I came upon yours. It is wonderful. Do you review books by individuals? Only if it’s art-related. I have to set some boundaries or the next thing you know I’m writing a review for Clorox.

Hi Francie! In a nutshell, what is rough edge applique?? In regular appliqué, the edges are turned under for a neat finish. When I say rough edge appliqué I’m referring to the practice of sewing something down with the rough edges out and showing. They add texture and develop character as they fray.

Are there sites that critique handmade crafts? Not that I know of. But then I’ve found that not many people really want an honest opinion of what they make.

Where can I get cute free mailing labels? Thanks! Many of the sites that I link to on the gift tag page also have other printables available.

Any tags with cows? Huh?!? Assuming you are referring to printable gift tags, then, no, not that I’m aware of.

Have you created an art journal that you would be willing to share? Yes, several, and I hope to start sharing those here again soon.

hey francis..i've had the biggest crush on you for awhile! i don't go on here a lot but message me on www.******.com under the username "wishfulthinker". Talk about “wishful thinking”.
I've had a crush on you for awhile.
Ok so I have a crush on U.
I'm INFATUATED with you.
hiya cutie are you a member of any other social internet site?
I’m sensing a trend here.

Do you know about the website***?? I made 200 today. it's mad easy. You made 200 what, though. That's the question.