February Product Pick

I’m not sure if my product pick for this month is based on the fact that it has been below zero in Ohio lately and my pick functions based on heat, or if it is because I am totally imursed in the whole planner craze.  It is very likely that both contributed to my pick, which is the Amazon Basics Thermal Laminator.

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I had thought about getting a laminator because I saw a cool foiling technique that Julie Fei-Fan Balzer had done, which you can view here:

http://balzerdesigns.typepad.com/balzer_designs/2015/01/foiling-technique-2-toner-copy-laminator.html

Then I purchased a planner and had seen how others made their own planner dividers using scrapbook paper, a laminator and a hole punch.  That sealed the deal and I decided to purchase my laminator from Amazon.  I mainly chose Amazon Basics Thermal Laminator because someone had recommended it; however, I didn’t shop around much at all (I’m a little impatient).  It was also inexpensive, costing approximately $20.00.

The laminator is very easy to use.  You just plug it in and flip the power switch to the desired laminator pouch thickness, either 3ml or 5ml.  5ml is thicker than 3ml.

Laminator

Once you flip the switch, the red light on the top of the laminator will light up.  This shows that it is heating up.  Once it is heated up and ready to use, the green light will light up.  Now you are ready to place your paper to be laminated in the pouch like a sandwich, and insert it in to the end of the laminator that has the different pouch sizes marked (letter, 4×6 and card).

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Be sure to insert it into the laminator evenly, with space at both sides of the pouch,, and with the closed end of the pouch first.  The laminator will grab the pouch and pull it through the machine.  It heats the pouch and seals your paper inside by fusing the sides of the pouch around your paper together.

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Once it feeds your laminated paper through the to other side and releases it, be sure to remove it with caution as common sense would tell you, it will be hot.

Laminating-planner-divider

After it cools, you can trim around your paper and I usually run it through the laminator again after I have trimmed it, just to be sure that it is sealed.  Sometimes the pouch wants to separate after you have trimmed it.  I even leave close to 1/4″ around my paper to be sure that it is sealed well.  And here are my planner dividers that I created using this laminator.  I will post a step by step tutorial on how I made them in another post next month, so stay tuned 🙂

Laminator-and-planner-divid

I think that it would be a great idea to make study guides for children, such as writing letters and numbers, laminate them, and then allow them to write on the laminated guide with an erasable marker.  I haven’t done it yet but it is definitely something that I want to try.

Do you have any great techniques or ideas that can be used with a laminator?  If so, I would love to hear them!

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Journal Pages

I try to do something in my daily art journal every day (hence the name “daily journal’).  In my daily journal, I may work on techniques and my drawing, but my main focus is on my writing.  It is my diary but with colorful images and patterns.  I have kept a diary type journal since I was in elementary school.  I just loved to write down my teenage woes or fun times that I had with my friends.  I enjoy even more going back as an adult and reading those pages. I was also very interested in arts and crafts since elementary school, so it only made sense that I would combine the two and have a daily art journal.  Some pages are based on one thought or theme like these two:

we-can-work-it-out-journal- never-let-anyone-dull-your-

Some are only created so that I can work on a technique or practice drawing.  As you can see, I love drawing faces.  And for some reason I have become obsessed with mermaids 🙂

 Under-the-Sea-Journal-Page male-face-collage-journal-p

The following card was created just to highlight the beautiful Christmas Card created by artist Charlie Harper that I received from my friend Rachel.  And of course to do some journaling.

Christmas-card-journal-page

Do you do much daily journaling in your art journal?

January 2015 ATC Swap

The theme for our January 2015 Artist Trading Card (ATC) Swap was New Year’s Resolutions.  Everyone came up with great resolutions and designs.  Mine was based on balancing my art business with my personal life.

Nikki-ATC-Jan-2015

Deb wants to be happy, be creative and wish upon a star this year.

Deb-ATC-2015

Kathleen wants to live, laugh and drink wine in 2015 🙂

Kathleen-ATC-Jan-2015

Marsha’s theme for the year is growth.

Marsha-ATC-Jan-2015

Tonya wants to grow as an artist in 2015 and create something every day.  What a great resolution!

 Tonya-ATC-Jan-2015

And Maggy just simply wants to be happy this year.  A resolution that seems so simple but sometimes so difficult to achieve when we focus on the negatives of daily life.

Maggy-ATC-Jan-2015

All of my friends have great New Year’s Resolutions and I hope we all achieve them this year.  What are your New Year’s Resolutions?

Upcoming Mixed Media Canvas Class

Mixed Media Canvas Class

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Come and create a mixed media canvas with me. No art experience required. Seriously, it’s that easy! All supplies and materials will be provided for you. You only need to bring a few inspirational quotes or phrases and a positive attitude. You will learn collage techniques as well as how to paint and texturize your canvas.

2/21/15 (Saturday): 3-7pm

2/22/15 (Sunday) 1-5pm

Both classes (2/21/15 and 2/22/15) will be held at The Chick N’ Coop,  located at 21 West Main Street in Lexington, Ohio.  The cost of the class is $50 and all materials will be provided. We will be celebrating the Grand Opening of The Chick N’ Coop, which offers beautiful, refinished furniture, as well as other items from local artists, such as artwork, candles, jewelry and handbags.

Space is limited so if you are interested, email me asap to secure your spot. Please note that we will need to have a minimum of 4 people signed up to have class. Hope to see you soon!