Tuesday, January 15, 2008

How do you evolve?

I don't know about you, but I am always in a quest to become a better stamper. Like you, I visit blogs, watch artwork in e-groups, and go to a few online galleries when I have time (maybe that is the problem -- I never have time!).

When I first started stamping, I would study the cards that appealed to me -- usually they were from one or two artists -- to figure out what I liked. I would adapt the elements that I liked into my own stamping until my own style developed. A style overhaul is overdue for me -- I am in a design rut!

I have a blocky, sparse style. Too sparse. Too blocky. I have been watching the trends lately, and it seems to be leaning toward a style that is very do-dad-esque. I am not very good at random embellishment placement. Since I received a shipment of stamps, I thought I would give the highly-embellished style ("do-dad style") a whirl.



Well, this is my result (it is much more dimensional in real life). I do like how it came out, but it took me a long time to go from start to finish, and frankly, I just don't have the luxury of that much time usually (I didn't have it today, either, but sometimes you need to throw the clock out of the window and just go with the flow).

I think what I like best about this card is the background. It is a simple random VersaMark resist background. To make it, I randomly stamped the large flower image onto glossy cardstock with VersaMark, then brayered Stampin' Up!'s Pomegranate and Chocolate chip inks over it. To smooth and blend the inks, I brayered over that whole thing with pink ink. After it dried a bit, I swiped over that with a paper towel to remove the ink from the flower (hence, the resist : ). The background was the quickest part!

I lowered the resolution so much on this that some of the details were lost, like the painstaking paper piercing on the edges of the pomegranate and the distressed edges on most of the card. The "one of a kind" saying is also popped.

So what do you think? Was it worth the time I put into it? Should I continue on this quest to upgrade my style or should I just stay the course?

28 comments:

Juliet A said...

I think that it is good to try out new ways of doing things, but what isn't broken doesn't need to be fixed. You've seen, you conquered, now go back to doing what makes the person that people like me want to copy.

Melody (lacyquilter) said...

Beautiful card. Ditto what juliet said.

Lynn Mercurio said...

I think this card totally rocks. All of my cards take me a long time to create...I fret and labor over each step, but in the end I'm usually happy, as you should be with this lovely card. I think it's wonderful that you are trying to step out of your "rut"...although none of your cards look the same to me...they all look unique and innovative!

Diane said...

What a great card!But while this is truly great,don't become me. You have seen me take 2 hours to make one creation while you make 3! You are the "Queen of Greatness and Style with Speed".

Dee R

Amy said...

This is a beutiful card. It is so hard to change our style. I feel that too. But, this is gorgeous! :)

Passionforstamping said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Passionforstamping said...

This is a gorgeous card! But, as the others say, we each have our own style. Maybe YOU think you SHOULD change, but having your own style is what makes each stamper so unique.

Dianne K.

Alyce said...

It goes without saying that your work has always been wonderful. I really like this card. So I think it's up to you. If you don't feel comfortable doing this, I don't think you should force it. But if you enjoyed experimenting, I think you'll find that things go a little more quickly as you go along.
Thanks so much for sharing this card with us.

Yvette said...

I am in the same boat as you Pat. I want to make my style more complex. But then I see some awesome graphic stuff and I want to do that. I think this card was worth it. It looks really rich. If you don't like it, I'll take it off your hands. :)

Susan said...

Oh I love it! I completely understand about evolving or de-evolving style, lol! My style or lack of is pittiful most days. Keep on trying new things!

Kimm BT said...

I think there are 2 thoughts here... one is to be comfortable with your natural style. Everyone creates better in their 'natural' stamping style. Second is learning to stretch our creative wings... learning takes practice (for me that always means more time!) but is always worth it. Your card is gorgeous Pat and as you practice stretching, it will come easier and faster:)
Kimm BT

Anonymous said...

I agree with all of the comments posted. There is nothing wrong with trying something new and I have found sometimes added embellishments are all that is needed to kick it up a notch. Your cards and techniques continue to inspire me.

Donna

Terri said...

The card is very nice. I think it is good to try new things sometimes but untimately I think it is still better to stick with a style that suits you.

Cathy Yamashita said...

That is absolutely beautiful, Pat! I have never looked at anything you did and thought it was too simple or too "blocky". But,I think it's alwyas good to branch out & try new things. You might run across something that you really love doing. Our newest Diva, Meghan, used to make elegant, but simple cards and mostly in the same colors. I encouraged her to try other things and started dragging her to classes. Now she is way more creative than me!

Beth Norman said...

Yes, this card was definately worth the time, Pat. It is so, so gorgeous! I promised myself to work longer on a card and not bang out cards. It is a nice self inspirational resolution. Sounds like you're doing the same.

Cydne said...

I think that this card was worth it; I love it! It is always good to stretch ourselves by trying new things.

That being said, daily life doesn't always allow that much time, and when you create using techniques and methods that are comfortable to you, that is when the true essence of your own style really shows.

So, my answer, do both! It keeps you growing.

Gail said...

Pat, your cards are always wonderful. You are extremely talented, and I really admire your inovation. It is also fun to try to stretch yourself, so go ahead and try something new, but always know you are very talented.

Anonymous said...

It's a beautiful card. However, if it's torture for you to create it then why forcing yourself. Stamping is supposed to be fun! Sure, there will be trends, but if they're not "you" you shouldn't feel obligated to follow the trend. On the other hand, it is always good to stretch yourself now and then and try something new. Most of the time I find that new techniques take longer but after practice become old hat. So if you really like the look then maybe it's just a matter of becoming more comfortable/efficient at the process. Most importantly, enjoy the process.

Ginni said...

Very pretty, never too sparse or blocky for me! I so enjoy everything you do - I'd like to be like you when I grow up - lol

Anonymous said...

I think that creativity takes time. The technical skill becomes routine and quick. To evolve and grow, it requires time. If we all stayed true to the old skill set, we wouldn't have much in the way of stamping art. The Junkies are proof of that and your creativity is already a step ahead. ...Pat M

TC said...

Stampincatstrio@yahoo.com
I really like the look of the card Pat. It's nice to step out of you comfort zone once in a while.
Theresa D-W

Donna said...

I love Love LOVE this card, Pat!! The colors alone are seductive. Your style change here was well worth your time.

Thank you for sharing, and I'll be looking for more similar to this..

Donna

Cyndi - Dreams Unltd said...

I love this card, Pat! But then I love all your cards! But this one is different from the norm. It does take more time, but how about making at least 1 in 4 or 1 in 5 using a more elaborate technique like this just for something a bit different? *LOL*

Cyndi
Dreams Unltd

Anonymous said...

I adore the card Pat..this is one of my favorite techniques..I hear you on feeling the "rut rage". I would say you are on a roll.
connie Paxman

djolet said...

I think it's great! Sometimes you just got to PLAY, try something different, then discover it's just another facet of your ever-growing talent. Even if it did take longer to do, you said "I did it" and "I like it"! Sometimes, a challenge is all we need to jump start our creativity.

Stamperskye said...

I think it's really pretty, Pat. I love Pomegranate anyway. You did a nice job making all the "busy" coordinate so that it was not too much. lovely job. Very lovely, indeed. Most of the time my cards are quick. Either I need to make lots, or finishing several makes me feel more productive. But to step back and add to a design often makes it even better. Thanks for reminding me to do that myself.
Stamperskye

Cheri (VizaCat) said...

Great job!!! It is so hard to step outside the box. Like you, I am in a stamping rut and don't know what do with the new trend toward "elements". But seeing you do such a great job inspires me. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

The card is beautiful! However, being new and finding my way through the maze of techniques, I loved finding your site and realizing that simplicity is okay. Please keep trying new things and please keep doing the "simpler" LO that are your style.
Mellan :)