Sunday, December 20, 2015

Snowy Owl, Christmas 2015

Making my Christmas cards is kind of my Big Art Event of the year. I do everything myself so it ends up being a fairly large project to work on. I had started the painting in late October, so I was ahead of the game this year. The part that took the longest was the addressing!

This year I wanted to make my cards double-sided so that I could have a printed handlettered message inside. I love the way it turned out! Last year I used a stamp inside each card, but it was just a generic Christmas stamp that I found at a local craft store. I wanted to be able to have my own lettering inside the card without having to resort to getting a custom stamp made. It took a little bit to set up, as I wasn't sure that the printer would be able to do it correctly (I'm a bit of a control freak about this, I try to do as much as I can myself), but it turned out fine. The cards are printed on 110lb coverstock so they are nice and thick and feel just like a store-bought card.

I started a tradition to design a little something extra to go with the cards. Last year I made watercolor stars as the envelope seals. This year I ended up doing two types of stickers: our return address and the Special Delivery stamp. The return address came out of laziness at first. I didn't want to write our home address a hundred times. Then I couldn't find anything that I liked, so I ended up designing it to print on sticker paper, hand-watercoloring each one, then punching all of them out with a circle punch. A lot of work for address stickers? Yeah, totally. But I kind of love them so it worked out.

The Special Delivery stickers came out by accident. I actually ran out of stamps while I was addressing the cards, so I chose a few that I could hand deliver instead of having to mail them. My family got pulled out of the mail pile, but the top corner looked so lonely and empty, so I decided to make a little sticker that was "like" a stamp but cuter. Then my mom rescued me with more stamps, so I just added them next to the Special Delivery sticker and sent all of them in the mail! Unfortunately it was so dark when I had to take these photos they aren't the best, but you get the idea.

I shared a few of my progress shots on my personal Instagram account while I was working away on these so I put them into a little collage here. I decided to practice my calligraphy to address the envelopes but I wasn't 100% pleased with the results. Still, I persevered and got them done. Mostly I think I just need more practice, but it's fine. You can see my Christmas cards from other years in 2011 and 2012, 2012 on it's own and 2014. 2013 was a bad year so no Christmas card was made for that one. I think I have an idea for my 2016 Christmas card already which will likely continue my Canadian wildlife theme that I unintentionally started, ha.

I've been pretty neglect with my blog recently but this is a busy time of year for everyone. I have been doing a lot of knitting this winter, which I will share later, and not enough painting. I started a new job recently and that stress plus general holiday season stress has made it hard to make time for creativity. But I am looking forward to my Christmas Break this year, a week and a half of family and me time to spend! This week is Christmas so have a safe and happy holiday season and a wonderful New Year!


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