Wednesday, July 23, 2014

In case you are wondering where I have disappeared...

I am working on another landscape painting and hope to finish it by the end of next week *fingers crossed*


Monday, July 14, 2014

Autumn Colors of the Apricot Tree - Painting

I love color
and good food
And the  best way to spend an afternoon is with a

 + some paints


 AND an empty canvas!

My source of inspiration for the painting was a calendar photograph portraying the natural beauty of lower Swat. And as soon as I saw it, I knew I had to paint this wonderful autumn landscape in a symphony of greens, yellows and oranges.

I started off with a quick sketch -jotting the main features of the composition. Then outlined the main parts of the painting with a wash of Ultramarine Blue + Cadmium Yellow + Crimson.

Next, I painted glimpses of sky between the branches and leaves and painted the rocks in the foreground.

I continued with the under painting..

slowly building up the foliage and painting the trees and branches.  I decided to use strong acrylic colors to help convey a riot of autumnal color.

Next came highlights and shadows.

And finally more detail in the foreground - the fallen leaves.

Here's my finished piece (and some close ups)!


Monday, July 7, 2014

Stenciled Herb Pot

Hey guys!

I realize how quiet it has been on the blogging front. It is just that life got super busy for me, not leaving enough time to blog. But, I am back and ready to go full steam ahead with lots of fun projects and tutorials.

So lets get crafting shall we?

There is nothing more satisfying than a DIY project that turns out exactly the way you envision it. So here's a quick and easy tutorial to spruce up your patio with stenciled herb/flower pot.

For this project, you will need:

Acrylic paint
Brushes/sponge roller
Masking tape
Pots (I am using plastic ones)

First, cover your work space with some newspaper. Decide on the stencil and colors you want to use. And also plan the layout before you start stenciling.

Next secure your stencil to your pot with some masking tape.

Then load your brush with paint, dabbing off excess on some paper towel. Begin stenciling.

As you can see I first painted the leaves green, and whilst the paint was still wet I applied yellow around the outer edges of the leaves.

Once the paint is dry, remove the stencil and wipe it clean. Reposition and continue till you are done.

Now you are ready to fill the pot with your choice of herb :)

If you make a small error while stenciling, here's how you can correct it: 


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

DIY Crepe Paper FLOWER

Flowers, you can  never grow tired of them! And I have been wanting to make these lovelies for an event.

Mikaeel's Thomas the train birthday party provided me with a perfect opportunity.

And they turned out amazing, adding that extra ooph to the celebrations!

The technique is simple and material easily available at your local art shop. You can make these well in advance, like I did and fluff them up on the day of the event.

So let's get started!

You will need:
Crepe paper

Yup, that's it!

You can use any size you want, and create as many layers as you like. The more layers you have, the fluffier the flower. For this tutorial I used six 8"x8.5" pieces and five 6"x6.5" pieces for the center. 

Begin by stacking together six pieces of crepe paper.

Add a contrasting center and scallop cut the edges.

Accordion fold them together.

And tie a string down the middle of the accordion folds and if you wish to hang them up,  leave a long tail of string at  the end.

Using a pair of scissors curve each end of the accordion folds through all layers into petals like so:

Then carefully pull the center petal towards the middle. Crepe paper rips quite easily so be very careful. 

Repeat this for all layers, shaping up your petals as you go along.

Fluff up your petals and you're done! 

Easy peasy! And now you have a gorgeous flower. Use it as part of event decor, or hang it from a wall or simply use it as an embellishment on presents.


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Thomas The Train Party With Free Printables!

Chugga-chugga! Choo-choo!

Hello everyone!
Remember how I'd been working on Mikaeel's second birthday party? Well, it has been more than a month but I am so happy to finally be sharing it (mind you the post has lots of pictures with printable FREEBIES at the end). But hey, you can easily pull off a similar train-themed birthday party for your kiddo's next birthday! :)

My sister wanted to celebrate Mikaeel's 2nd birthday with a train-themed birthday party (we did Sesame Street on his first one!). So we decided on Thomas the train as our theme and settled on blue, red and yellow as our main colors with a bit of green thrown in. 

I started with the invites. I had fun making cookie monster and elmo cards and I felt evelope cards would be great because I wouldn't have to worry about creating separate envelopes. Besides they are super quick and easy to whip up. I got the train images off the internet, changed them somewhat using Photoshop, and then proceeded to design the card.

For a more professional look, I printed some of the text on tracing paper and the rest on white printing paper and then sealed off the envelope with a Thomas image. 

Next came the banner. I wanted it to say, "Happy Birthday Mikaeel" with each word hanging from a different string but brought together at both ends with large crepe paper flowers. I also wanted the wall behind the banner covered in  yellow crepe paper. So for "Happy Birthday" I stuck with red and blue and for "Mikaeel" I went for a train look (my sister's idea!). And I am so glad that I did because it looked really cute! 

I also made a small banner that said "Mikaeel" for the food table. I simply used this template for colored triangles and then pasted them onto 1/4 inch larger triangles cut from black chart paper. Using blue piping, I hand-stitched them together. 

Then I made lots of crepe paper flowers.

Simply love how they turned out! I will post a tutorial on it soon :)

No party is complete without a door-sign.

And let's not forget party favors! I got the template for these here, printed it out on blue printing paper and assembled. I created "Thank you for coming" on photoshop and stuck it on all party favors.

For the table, I wanted  to create a cupcake train. But since I was short on time, I decided to go with a simple food train. I made the engine out of thick cardstock, created slits in the front and back wheel and inserted a rectangular piece of cardstock so that the engine could stand on its own!

And made some cute food labels so the guests wouldn't have to ask or skip over a particular food.

I even made a photobooth backdrop for the party! Using UHU patafix I adhered crepe paper to the wall and pasted train cut outs and paper flowers on it. It was an instant hit with the guests!

And now for some free printables.

food label