Friday, October 3, 2014

October's Postcard of the Month
These are coming out JUST as the foliage here is peaking!  Rather prescient of me to presume such a spectacular foliage season, eh?!  
And it wasn't actually foliage that I was going for when I started to play with this one - 
I'd primarily been trying to capture the effect of the plume. splume, splash, spray - 
whatever that sheet of white water is called as it is displaced behind a skimming body.
My pal, Deb (a person responsible for so much of my well-being - e.g. hassle-free hair, great water bottle, great lines for jokes...), took me out on the Waterbury Reservoir, KAYAKING* last month!! 

Deb, with Mt. Mansfield - pre-color show - in the background:
So, to thank Deb for this truly awesome inaugural kayaking experience. I made her this card:

I really liked the idea of the hills and the water** for October's card.

And, while we were on the otherwise serenely un-peopled water, 
we got a great water-skiing show!  This guy was talented!  
And, amazingly, I caught this very cool shot of aforementioned plume, splume, spray:
which I really wanted to try to  effect.  But with a goose taking off
(I did NOT take these great pix!***)
 instead of a water skier...

I had also pulled a bunch of potential papers that I might use for October's cards - 
thinking I'd go for a less quiet atmosphere than last October's card:
But still, with GEESE.
It was hard to let go my desire to honor CARROTS again:

But I could indulge in carrot colors for foliage at least:
And, tried to figure out how to incorporate some sheet music:
Nope.  Not there.
And then worked on goose and spray:
But I didn't intend to keep the water and sky color/material the same, so...  
I tried a soft, cool grey (middle protoype), but didn't care for that at all, 
so the pale, warm (?!) blue (r.) is what I went with:
I also briefly toyed with the enticing idea of nixing the solo bird, 
and instead trying to do a reflection of the foliage in the water:
which looks like it would have worked better if I hadn't scissored the 'reflection' 
(and just overlaid with the gauzy white 'lace' paper)****, 
but I have these cool scissors that Barb gave me that I'd been wanting to utilize...:
Anyway... >> reflection nixed in favor of bird.  :)  

And, so, I set about tracing and cutting out a bunch o' birds:
I lovelovelove cutting, drawing, doing anything in multiples!  By the time you're 20 or so in, 
you know a lot about whatever it is that you're trying to do!  
I got to know goose necks really well with this one.  :)
Couldn't resist putting them in formation
before binning 'em.
Oh, the foliage was fun to prep!  
Usually, the evolution from idea to final design is almost entirely about EDITING!  
Ruthlessly culling all those wonderful, yummy papers and colors that I REALLY want to use... 
So this felt rather lusciously indulgent.  :)  And, lo and behold: SO DID THIS FOLIAGE SEASON!!

The Fixin's

The 'flock' stamp that I whittled out of an eraser:

The Steps

Step 1
Step 2
Step 3
 Step 4
 Step 5
 Step 6
 Step 7
 Step 8
 Step 9
 Step 10
 Step 11
 Step 12
 Step 13
 Step 14
 Step 15
 Step 16
 Step 17
 Step 18
 Step 19
 Step 20
 Step 21
 Step 22
 Step 23 - Ooops!  I'd laid the goose on the card, 
and forgot to move it off until I'd gotten into the next step!
This unusual, waxy blue/green 'paper' makes for good water effects.
 Step 24
 Step 25 - silver foil, courtesy of my friend Joy*****
 Step 26
 Step 27 - Hard to tell, but this is one last layer of white - 'lace' paper:
 Step 28 - the strip  of metallic aqua paper:
 Step 29 - OK, now the goose can stay:
 Step 30 - Here come the rushes:
 Step 31
 Step 32
 Step 33
 Step 34 - Cattail!
 Step 35 
 Step 36 - I though it still needed something, so I lightly stamped (with my favorite, funky little piece of inked corrugated cardboard) these silver streaks behind the flock: 

Panel of 21 of October's postcards:


*WHATTA TRIP!  Couldn't have been more perfect!  I'd never been kayaking before, though plenty of canoeing in my youth - and we even have a nice Old Town canoe that we never use, because I can't sit in it comfortably anymore.  So... I'd been thinking maybe one of these nice, molded plastic kayaks might work ergonomically, and then, Deb said: "Do you want to go kayaking?"      
And so it happened.   :)
We took Deb's 2 kayaks out to the Waterbury Reservoir
one perfect, early September morning, and spent about 2 blissful hours paddling around.
Blissful me (freshly shorn).
The Hump, from the east.
Water shadow selfie.  

**The water effect in this card wasn't going to work well for the October design if I wanted the taking-off goose to be clearly visible - it would have gotten lost in the multi-textured multiple papers, so I opted for a single rice paper for most of the water.

***1st photo was from this site:; 2nd photo:  Karen Kasmauski - ; 3rd photo: Well, when I tried to find this image again online, I couldn't... And the longer I searched, the more I realized how much I like it... So, no credit, for now.

****I did like how the sheet music echoed/reflected the 'V' of flying geese.

Thanks, Joy!

Addendum I

I'm often tempted to just stop and be finished early on in production 
(maybe even without the music) - 
I just enjoy the simple effect 
and especially the graphic effect of multiples:

Addendum II

Well, as if the kayaking trip wasn't exceptional enough, 2 hours later, on the same day, Mule and I went for a hike up to Libby's Look (@8 miles up the road from us, in W. Bolton)
with our great pal/neighbor, Peter - and Bentley.  :)
We saw these crazies climbing the cliff face on our way up!  We took the more circuitous route.  :)  
The Hump, from the west, through the trees:
 Cute little hobbit hills.
 Lake Champlain out thatta way >
See?  :)
On the way down, I asked the fellas to validate this VAST trail sign, which reads:
And, WAAAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYY up there on the cliff
 we saw 
(we could hear them, but could only see them only via the camera zoom!)
more NUTS!! in the process of rappelling down the cliff face.
Twas a grand day.  :)  Month.  :)  :)

Fin fin.  Really.