A Few of My Favorite Websites . . . This Week!

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Websites That Inspire Me

One of the cool things about the internet is that you can find sites online that explore the topics that interest you RIGHT NOW. The people who create those sites, blog posts or articles may have posted what interests you just yesterday . . . or they might have posted it years ago but left it there for you to discover today. So for example, if you are currently interested in learning how to color images with alcohol ink markers or work with Gelli Plates or whatever, you can find it online somewhere. It’s all just a quick Google away. And the information continues to build. So if you search out sites on a particular topic now and then you search that same topic in six months, you are likely to find new and interesting info.

Here are a few spots online that I’ve been enjoying lately. None of them are specifically about stamping although two of them are craft sites and one of those does often cover stamping topics. Others are related to other interests of mine (like cooking and baking bread) and others are places where I find inspiring photography or learn how to use the software that lets me do things like edit photos and create a blog. I’m thinking that you and I are creative people and may have overlapping interests and so you might enjoy some of these sites. After all, Google and the NSA and the whole online advertising world apparently knows where I like to hang out on the internet already, so why not share this info with you, my friends, too? So here are some spots I like and that you might like as well.

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Getting Excited About Stamping Again

Layered Mixed Mediums Colored Pencils How To Picture 4

(How-to Picture from Colored Pencil Techniques eArticle.)

Do you remember when you first discovered stamping? Maybe someone gave you a stamped card and you were amazed that they made it themselves. Maybe you stumbled into a rubber stamp store and wondered what the wood blocks with pictures on them were all about. Maybe you saw a demo of heat embossing at the local craft store and thought it was magic. Or maybe you stumbled across a how-to in a blog or through a YouTube video online.

While there are still new stampers joining us, many of the people who are stamping these days have been stamping for quite a few years. And sometimes when you have been doing something for a while, you start to lose the excitement that got you started. There is just something so stimulating about learning something new. And stamping is a very flexible craft that can incorporate all kinds of mediums and can mesh with other art and craft techniques, so you can always be learning something new with stamping . . . unless you let yourself fall into a rut.

Doodling how-to Picture

(How-to Picture from Doodling & Hand Lettering eArticle.)

There was a period in stamping’s popularity when many of us were in acquisition mode. Whatever the newest thing was, we bought it. Whatever the newest technique was, we tried it. It was definitely fun. But as the drawers and shelves and surfaces in our craft rooms began to bulge with all the stuff we bought over the years, most of us began to pull back. We started to question whether we really needed to buy every new gadget, every new inkpad and spray, and whether we really had to learn every technique and related craft. We started being pickier about what we bought. And we started cleaning out the back corners and giving things away or selling them on eBay.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Not every technique is going to appeal to every stamper. And we don’t all need every gadget, every stamp or every art medium. But if you let yourself drop out of learning mode, you are likely to find yourself in a rut and bored with the whole thing. And that is really a shame because stamping is a great activity. Spend an afternoon stamping and you come away feeling creatively refreshed.

But how do you keep things fresh and keep learning new things without blowing your budget and overflowing your storage shelves?

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