Hope Blooming

Happy Thursday, peeps!  Today I have another mixed-media meets cardmaking card I made a couple weeks back but haven't had a chance to share.  I used that corrugated paper technique again along with a mix of stamps from the Text Objects and Hope Blooms sets.  My concept for the card was to have this colorful flower blooming out of a really rugged brown area where it didn't seem possible something could flourish. You know that smile that creeps across your face when you pass an abandoned lot and see something beautiful rising from the cracked pavement?


Truthfully, I've been holding onto this card because I wanted to remake another one that brought this concept across more dramatically.  Then I got to thinking, that's not what my new outlook is all about.  It's not about censoring the art that didn't quite meet my expectations, but about enjoying the journey.  And boy did I ever ENJOY making this card.  You see that background?  That started out as a cream card base.  I stamped the Text Objects heart all over it and then colored with pastels and blended.  I LOVED the way it looked.  I had recently watched a video about mixed-media where the artist was talking about overcoming perfectionism and suggested covering up your favorite parts of a project to make it not so "perfect".  So I did a light layer of Gesso over most of the background, then added some glimmer mist and color washes to gunk it up a bit.  Now it kind of feels like my little secret that there's all this "heart" underneath the surface that someone might not see or even notice at first glance.  But if you look closely, it's there.  That soooooo describes how I feel about myself!  And how much sweeter is the experience, both in art and in life, for those that take the time to look closely at what's below the surface?

I stamped over the background in archival ink with the sentiment and flower from Hope Blooms, then added my corrugated piece, made with kraft cardstock and some Sweet Threads dp.  The three sizes of blooms from Hope Blooms are stamped onto the DP, then cut out.  They're the only thing on the card that I didn't grunge up because I wanted them to be this unexpected bright burst of colorful hope emerging from the corrugate. A ray of sunshine on a gloomy day.  A tiny giggle in the midst of sadness.  A hand reaching out to give you HOPE.  A flower blooming in the desert.

My grandfather homesteaded 40 acres in the desert.  The soil was hard, hilly and completely rock infested.  But he had a vision and continued to work the land, eventually creating a thriving, productive farmland.  I remember one day when I was 8 or 9, riding in his truck to help pick rocks out of the fields,  I asked him why he did all of it.  His response was simply that he dreamed of making the desert bloom.  That phrase has stuck with me, and now six years after his passing, whenever I feel all dry and used up and that the obstacles before me are too hard to hurdle, I think of my grandfather who despite all the obstacles nature threw at him, truly did make the desert bloom. And that is what was in my heart when I made this card.  It might not have turned out perfectly or as I envisioned, but the journey was heartfelt and meaningful and left me with a bit of hope for the future.


Enabler's List:
Stamps:  Text Objects, Hope Blooms (Verve Stamps)
Paper:  Cream, Kraft, Sweet Threads (BasicGrey)
Ink:  Coffee Archival, Broken China (Ranger), Glimmer Mists, Glimmer Glam (Tattered Angels), Distress stains (Tim Holtz), oil pastels
Accessories:  Paper crimper (Marvy uchida), twine, prima leaves, Gesso, rhinestone

13 comments

  1. Truly beautiful, Julee! As a perfectionist, I definitely understand the wanting things to be perfect and it can be hard to let that go. I love reading about the amazing journey you're on. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings about the journey as well as the beautiful results! Have a great weekend!

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  2. This is so cool! (And it's aqua!) It really is a word picture of life and encouragement through struggles. Fabulous!

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  3. I enjoyed reading your thoughts and story about the creative process for this card - which is FABULOUS. It's much more meaningful when our heart goes into our creations. Glad you had a good journey with this card. ;-)

    (P.S. - Thanks for your comment on my blog about my Mojo card. I appreciate it!)

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  4. SO happy for all the joy you are drawing from doing these "projects"/ cards. I'm all for knowing the story behind the face and I just LOVE seeing a flower bloom in what seems to be an impossible place for it to do so. "Bloom where you are planted" taken to the limits :) Your grandfather's dessert experience is kind of like my card making process LOL! Keep them coming :)

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  5. It really is a beautiful card. Thanks so much for sharing, (your card, and your thoughts). Your Grandfather sounds like he was a very smart man, and a good teacher :)

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  6. Julee, this is truly beautiful - sooo unique!! Thanks for sharing & opening yourself up to your viewers :) Have a great weekend!

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  7. Hi Julee, I LOVE this card and I love how you shared how it evolved. Always remember these words by Pablo Picaso: "I begin with an idea then it becomes something else". And Moralia Plutarch (a Greek essayist born circa 46!!) said: "Painting is silent poetry". So apt for the beautiful direction your art is taking.

    {{hugs}} Jocelyn

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  8. This really turned out wonderful and I really enjoyed reading about your process. I've just begun a bit of mixed media/art jouranling too and I am really struggling with getting past the parts that I love about a picture, how to move past those first steps to get to the rich layers of so many designs that I see out there. I'm such a detail artist most of the time that I really struggle with things that require a looser more "gunked up" quality and I'm really working to get over that. Reading your process, especially after following your work for a while, is giving a lot of insight into how to get over that. So, thanks for sharing this process.

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  9. GOrgeous card and a beautiful post!! I enjoyed reading it. I really like your Grandpa's ideas... I'll always remember this when ever I feel a lil' low in spirit. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  10. I am really enjoying this new style you are working in. I am not familiar with the techniques or the products, but I love the look of it!

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  11. This is really cool! Love the look and the fabulous colors!

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  12. Julee- I have to say that I am loving all the mixed media. I mean, lets face it you always make stunning stuff and now with this new YOU, WOW girl. YOu have already inspired me with the corrugated stuff as I have made a couple different designs. This is just stunning and love how that flower just bursts out. Thank you so much and enjoy your journey!

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  13. I really like this one! The colors, the textures. Everything!

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Thanks so much for taking the time to brighten my day with a comment! I love hearing from you.

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