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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Spread your Wings and Fly!

Hey Y'all!!!!!
Good Morning to ya! I hope your all having a crafty wonderful day! Today were going to talk owls. I was never one to go nuts over them but I am truly amazed by how beautiful they can be. I have gotten kind of nuts over them over the years too. (go figure). I made a owl for my mom a while back when she was visiting and she loves it.. I had been asked by Jeannie Lassey to make an owl for her but I like to make them personal for each person I make things for, that is just a thing about me I can't change.  We agreed on a price for the owl plus shipping and a special box for it so it wouldn't (I pray) get crushed. During all this time of my planning and designing the shapes for the owl, my mother-in-law was hospitalized  several times and we were refi- ing our house.
Christmas came and went and oh my we just made it with all the hassel from the refi to have our new house payments start in Feb. In Short we had a crazy several months starting in September of last year. Poor Jeannie was so patient and I was not going to show her any of the owl till it was done but wanted her to know I was working on it, just life got a bit crazy!!!! Then in January I was told by my hubby I could take over our guest room as my craft room and boy howdy I went nuts getting stuff done so I could finally have sewing and my true craft love, paper crafting in the same room. Jeannie was gracious again and told me to work on the room and when it was done I could do the owl. When I finally got started on the owl in earnest  I had already asked Jeannie if I could change the color, she said sure she trusted me. I started by doing a search on owl photos and found the owl page. OH MY they were posting tons of pictures of the beautiful snow owls and well that's how Jeannie got a snow owl or my rendition of one.

Now I had been designing it off and on, I first went to work on the body shape. I used the snowman from Christmas Open house on the first owl I made, but I didn't like the bump on the back of the head or the flat head he had when I started. About that time Mary came up with the hanging ball ornament from Silent Night. I was literally  watching the assembly video and saw the cut outs and heard her say why she used them. So I borrowed her idea of the cut outs to give my owl body the more rounded shape. I had already changed the owl body by drawing and changing nodes to close at the top. I extended pieces here and there and added  basic shapes to make the outs to the piece to give it the chance to be more rounded as it was glued. The Small feathers on the brown owl started out as part of the pieces of pine cone.  In the snow owl I redesigned the feathers so they were (technical term here) fuzzier. For the wing feathers I did the same I redesigned those so they were fuzzier as well but those are my own idea drawn with my own two hands. (yeah I know big deal right?) LOL . Really from then on everything thing else on the owls were my own drawings, with the exception of the pine branches and on the brown owl there is a paper pine cone that is all Mary's. I made and designed the feet on both owls but I like how the snow owls feet turned out. They are  more like I wanted for the first owl. (practice right) They're still not perfect in my opinion.  I am still learning how to do all this. I will keep getting better as I keep practicing.  Mary  helps me learn  so much just by looking at her designs. I think my first epiphany with her and how she designs was OH she has to put the score lines here to make the paper (normally flat) bend. What a concept eh? total Genius right?( don't laugh you have days like that too) LOL  I already learned that with my shaping tools I could break the otherwise stiff fibers of the paper to bend them more the way I wanted but Whoa that was like the light bulb went on for me.

 Watch Leo's explanation of nodes and how to "play" with them. His voice is soothing and understanding not critical at all and the first time I watched it I had to shut it off half way through. I had no idea what he was talking about I wasn't ever going to do that EVER. um  yeah never tell God you aren't going to do something. Anyhoo Leo's videos are very helpful and in your own home you can learn much from them, no body watching you saying that's not right. Leo is peeking through the computer saying nope that isn't right.  Most of all it this is something you really love keep trying!  I think I can say this too that if you just don't get it you can ask for help on the face book page or give Leo a call he is always willing to help if he can.
Another light bulb moment for me was when I  understood that if used basic shapes and added them to each other ie welding or making compound paths that gave me a start on my design of whatever I wanted to make.

The Eyes were something Jeannie asked me about and I can share with you that was super easy peasy. I used a white piece of card stock and punched it out using my 14 epiphany crafts tool. Color around the whole shape using Y13 copic Marker then use YR23 Marker color and color around the edge of the eye then  used a hole punch and punch  two black card stock dots and glue them into the center.  To finish them off I  edged the eye with black according to the picture I was looking at of a real snow owl. Use the 14 epiphany crafts shape tool epoxies to cover your colored  eye. See? easy peasy. The feathers that have the grey on them were tipped with a C3 Copic marker.

How can I tell you how to make an owl? Look at  photos pick one or a couple you like then try your best to copy them. Mary's files do give you the jumping off place. Pour over the PDFs she works so hard on think about each shape you need when you look at that picture of what you want to make. Then just Go For It!!! who is going to know how many times you failed till you got one you liked but the trash guy? This is how I started and still get started many times when I make something. Looking at the shapes understanding what I want and then starting with basic shapes to draw or make the pieces I need.
The pine cones are real and from my backyard pine tree. I wanted Jeannie to have something from my yard and sort of me. The pine needles are from 3d Wintergreens as I said I did make them a tad smaller to fit into the space I had. The snow is borrowed from a friend she had never used it much and said I could use it, I think it was Aleenes snow.  She said she got it from Michaels years ago, I checked the last time I was there and they still have it.   The berries were from a holly sprig I bought at Dollar Tree around Christmas time. See I said I was working on this a long time I wasn't kidding. Most of all take your time. If you rush or you just can't figure something out on whatever your working on put it away for a couple of days and go do something else. I have learned NEVER work on something when you know your tired, Never rush because your excited about it. When you realize your doing that slow down!!! Or walk away from it. Nothing ever good comes from rushing a project, trust me I have thrown away enough stuff to know.
I would love to tell you what size things are what shape I used but I really can't as those are my own designs. I did tell you how to start.  Print the PDFs that Mary makes for each file and keep a book. Then when your ready to make your own design pour over your book or books of PDFs. I still do that but more and more I am just making my own shape. LOL.
First rule is just because it is for a particular file doesn't mean you have to use it for that. When your ready to create your own shape, look at a picture of what you want to make and don't just look at the whole picture look at the shapes (basic ones) that make up the whole subject. That will get your started on making wing feathers or feet. Please don't say I can't do that, you can.Give yourself a chance to prove to yourself that you can. Well I was long winded again, Sorry about that. Most of all I want to encourage you to try what ever it is you've been thinking you couldn't do, try. God can do amazing things using us if we let him. Thanks so much for stopping by have a very blessed day and Happy Craftin Y'all! Blessings Sharalyn

Ps. Leo and Mary have been very encouraging to me to keep trying to keep designing. To both of them thank you your encouragement means a lot to me. Big hug you two Miss Gucci too!
Supplies used:
American Craft Card Stock, White, Charcoal, Pine
Copic Markers: C3, Y13, YR23
Epiphany Crafts:14 round
Scotch Quick Dry Adhesive

Ideas from Kits:
Christmas Open House SVG Kit
Silent Night SVG Kit

Actual Kit used for both Owls:
3d Wintergreens


  1. Love your creations! This is so original! And last box as well!!!!!!!

  2. Thank you Monika! I very much enjoy creating these.