Sunday, November 23, 2014

New Personal Traveler Carved by FloridaFour

I try not to covet other Letterbox carvers hand carved stamps but on occasion a stamp just captures my eye and it is love at first sight.  I know so many talented carvers that are generous with their talent, knowledge and skills.  Andrea of FloridaFour is one of those.  She was a contributor of Letterbox Trading Cards (LTC's) in a recent tracker exchange called Bloodless Halloween.  We each created 10 LTC's and then sent them to Shark Boy and Lava Girl.  They sorted and mailed back a set of LTC's to each contributor.  In return for our art we receive back 9 cards by other artist.  If you have the time it is a wonderful way to stay inspired and share tips, tricks and ideas with other Letterboxers.

FloridaFour and I exchanged a few e-mail about how much I loved her crow carving.  She was not sure about planting it with such a busy schedule.  I mentioned that I was eyeballing it for a Personal Traveler and then next thing I know it's Christmas in my mailbox.  Not only did she send me the stamp but she included a handmade card (another insanely gorgeous carving on the cover) but two additional LTC's.  One of a Crow that was for a Steampunk Art LTC and the other a self portrait.  All I can say is she is generous and amazing!

The next time my Letterboxing friends see me be sure to ask to stamp my new Personal Traveler.  I don't mess around with silly clues and puzzles.  Just ask and you shall receive! 


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

The Hottest Couple in Town LTC - Jack Frost and Elsa

 The Jack Frost and Elsa carving is Larger than the size of an LTC.  
Only part of the original carved image is used for the actual LTC due to the size.

 Stamped and embossed part of the image on the cards using black ink and clear embossing powder.  Layered the paper using a glue stick.

 Added a thick layer of Mod Podge to the background of each card with a small paint brush.

 Dumped chunky snow glitter over the entire card.  Please note that glitter is messy business.  I am covered in it, my craft room is covered, the dogs are glittery too.  Nothing is safe from a glitter storm.
Here is the finished card once dry.  It's hard to see the glitter in the pictures but in person it has the desired glittery snow feeling I was hoping for.  If the glitter texture had been fine it would not have had the look I was hoping for. 

These LTC's are for a Valentines Tracker/Event in Maine.  I wanted a carving that was non traditional but still felt romantic.  I didn't want to use traditional Valentines colors either.  They say that sparks fly when individuals meet and feel a connection.  Well in this case I think snow flurries are swirling! 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Disney Halloween - Pumpkin Mickey LTC

I have worked hard to move stamps out of Idaho that I have had on hand from our local events so that they can be enjoyed by boxers all over the country.  One small set of stamps that are with me right now are my Disney Halloween stamps (3 total) from a corn maze event that we hosted in 2010.  They have traveled previously to other states but no one asked to borrow them this year so they are in Boise at the moment.

A tracker was posted for a last minute Halloween LTC exchange called Bloodless Halloween.  I could not resist participating and fortunately I did not need to carve a new stamp to whip these together tonight.  A bit of stamping, some embossing, Copic Marker magic and presto the LTC's are ready to mail tomorrow.  I picked a layout design that did not require any drying time due to the quick turnaround I needed to accomplish.

On a side note Music Chick (Amanda) gave me a wonderful source for Copic Markers and refills.  On Sunday I ordered some refills and 2 new markers and they arrived postage free today.  It can be a crisis when you are working on cards or Letterboxing projects and you have a marker run dry.  I have ordered from Otakufuel 4 times and each time the service has been amazingly quick and my orders have always been accurate.  Music Chick also let me know that Otaku is a Japanese term for people with obsessive interests, commonly the anime and magna fandom.  In modern Japanese slang, the term Otaku is mostly equivalent to "geek" or "nerd".  I am not sure what this says about Amanda and I but it's a great resource if you are a Copic Marker junkie.

Otaku Fuel:


Monday, October 13, 2014

Letterboxing Survival Kit and LTC from Inkwell

I sent a carving to the Hunt for Shakespeare's Quill event that was in Washington on August 10th.  I received back in the mail this creative and adorable thank you from Inkwell.  The LTC is lovely and I really like the colors used in the card.  But it was the Letterboxing Survival Kit with two tiny replacement logbooks, small ink pad, zip locks and pencil that really tickled my fancy.  What a great idea to give to others to help with boxes that are found out in the wilds that are in distress.    How on earth did they come up with this great idea.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Music Chick's Hunger Games District Seal LTC's

 Panem - Luxury












 Graphite Mining

 Panem - The Capitol

Yesterday at the To Catch a Mockingjay Letterboxing event in Boise, Idaho, Music Chick shared with me many wonderful Letterbox Trading Cards (LTC's).  She has allowed me to share some of her art work previously on my blog and I am honestly in amazement of her creativity and the time she dedicates to creating LTC's.

Music Chick carved Districts 1-7 and WiseOldOwl carved Districts 8-The Capitol.  Once she had all the seals Music Chick created an LTC for each of the Districts adding her own flourish to the Districts to embrace the Districts and the goods or commodities that it provides to the Capitol.  She did such a wonderful job keeping the crispness of the seals as the focus but adding just a bit of detail to enforce the message. 

These LTC's are really a favorite of mine.  Sometimes you don't need fancy embellishments to really make a card pop.  In this case less is definitely more.  Thank you Music Chick for sharing your art with me.  I will treasure these cards always!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

To Catch A Mockingjay Letterboxing Event

Thank you Crazy Mountain Woman and Music Chick for hosting today's Hunger Games - To Catch a Mockingjay Letterboxing event. Kelly and I had such a wonderful time making new Letterboxing friends, catching up with locals and finding an unreal amount of Letterboxes.

Kelly played tribute today and attempted her hand at archery and the odds were definitely in her favor as she was one of the raffle winners too.   There were over 70 images to stamp and we originally thought we would only be able to find a small amount of them but with multiple stamps in boxes and no logbooks to slow us down we powered through all of them including H.I.P.S and even some that were brought from out of state.  Our wonderful hosts had many creative touches for the event and put so much time and care into the preparations for everyone who attended.  Add in perfect October weather and the event was a huge success.

Kelly whipped up adorable fish sushi from District 4 and I baked Coal Cookies from District 12 for the potluck.  It's fun to see themed food when attending events.

Thank you again to our hosts and everyone who attended! 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Iron Creek Camping in Stanley Idaho - Day One

Last Thursday after work Raisin, Jay and I drove up to Stanley, Idaho to set up camp at Iron Creek Campground (a mere two or three miles from town).  The campground is very small (only 8 official campsites) but several of them you can pull through vs. backing up into.  Since the dogs are not very good with providing help in this area I knew I was on my own so camp site #4 was perfect for me to drive right into.  I had been suffering with an awful sinusitis all week long which forced me back to the doctors and was pretty tired and worn out when I arrived (it's about a three hour drive from Boise) but with the sun quickly setting there was no time for me to rest.

It usually takes me about an hour to set everything up when I am alone right down to the chairs by the fire and the dog's black bowl filled with water.  Once I was set up I slipped on an additional layer of warm clothing (including gloves and a ski hat) and took the dogs for a brisk evening stroll.  The dogs and I quickly discovered that we were not only completely alone in the first come-first serve campground but there was also not anyone even parked at the Iron Creek trail-head which is immensely popular.

Our first evening was not just chilly but downright cold.  I built a quick fire, made a very fast dinner and relaxed briefly before the dogs and I headed into the tent trailer for the night.  Naturally the dogs awoke me at 6 a.m. (just like work days at home) to potty.  I was stunned to see how dark the camp ground was (the moon was even hiding) but the sky was filled with millions of stars.  It was breathtaking but painfully cold.  I am never fearful with the dogs with me but I did have this uncomfortable feeling while we were out in the complete darkness.  I had on my headlamp (which was rather dim) and wondered how scared I would be if I discovered eyes peering back at me in the darkness.  Raisin and Jay's glowed eerily and my imagination had me worried about what else might be looking my direction.  The dogs did their business and then we zipped back into the tent trailer and into our respective sleeping bags and dog beds for another hour or two. 

We did see deer and grouse on Thursday night in the campground.  And although there was a complete lack of humans there were also small birds and critters galore.  I love the peace and serenity of an empty campground.  With the stream running right through the camp ground the setting is very relaxing and beautiful. 

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