The 'Three Sisters' & the Jameison Valley ...... one of the 'touristy' spots in the Blue Mountains National Park.

Whose 'Creative Corner' I hear you ask???

Hi, I'm Chris Bennett AKA 'Chris in Oz'. I live in the beautiful Blue Mountains west of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia (affectionately known as 'Oz' or 'The Land Down-Under'). I'm in my mid-50's, have been married for 30+ years to THE most wonderful man and I'm the PROUDEST MUM of 2 grown children. My DS is into photography and has taken some amazing shots. You can see some of them in 'Simon's Gallery'. My DD is a High School teacher who is committed to educating our youth of today. I was a Teacher/Assistant Principal in the field of Special Education for over 16 years until I retired in June 2004.

I've been involved in art and craft activities for most of my life and I became a 'stampaholic' and 'technique junkie' to 'save my sanity' after an injury in 2003. I began by making cards and slowly, but surely, became addicted to ATCs, hand-made books, altered books, boxes, bottles, tins, jigsaw puzzles and anything else that stands still long enough to be altered. I love texture and colour and I'm gradually stepping outside my comfort zone to experiment and explore other media and styles. Check out 'My Gallery' to see some more of my work.

Oh, I forgot to mention that I also take photos, I don't know how 'good' my photos are, but I just love to take them ...... so every now and then I might just sneak one in ...... I hope you don't mind!!! Well, not too much!!! LOL!!!

Friday, 21 December 2007

Gift for my "desert dwelling friend"

Jackie is a wonderful 'cyber-friend' from the US who I 'met' through one of my Yahoo groups. She has sent me many cards and a gorgeous birthday gift this year. Unfortunately, I've had a really hectic year and have been unable to respond/reply to her as I would have liked. So, I had this great idea for a Christmas 'pressie' for her. Of course, I'm running behind, again, and although Jackie's gift is finally finished, I probably won't post it 'til after Christmas now - after all the work involved in making it, I'd be distraught if it got 'gobbled up or lost' in all the Christmas mail.

I love 'star books' and really enjoy creating them. I decided to adapt the measurements that I had, to make a smaller version that would store ATCs. I've called it an 'ATC Keeper'. When I'd finished, I looked for an appropriate sized box to decorate and store it in, but I couldn't find one in my stash. I can hear Jessie (my 'bestest' stamping buddy in Oz) saying, 'What no box among those 132 boxes you keep, just in case, you need one, one day!!!" LOL!!! Well, she's right, I do keep boxes - just in case, BUT I couldn't find one to fit. I was almost ready to go out to buy one, when I thought to myself - "self, why don't you make one to match???" So, I did. I have no idea what they're called, who to credit the idea to or where I even initially saw the idea. It's a box that contains 3 layers and when the lid is removed the sides open out and are decorated with messages/drawings/photos etc. I know, clear as mud. I took photos and put them in a slide show to let you see my newest project. I really hope that Jackie is going to love this gift as much as I do. I love it so much, I'm having trouble taking it to the Post Office!!! LOL!!! Does anybody else have trouble sending their creations out into the big wide world like I do??? LOL!!! Anyway, what do you think???

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz


Monday, 3 December 2007

'Twelve Days of Christmas' on CCSwaps

Over on CCSwaps I joined a swap to make Christmas gifts for twelve other members of the group, in return for 12 different gifts. Of course, I HAD to join twice.

My first gift was a Date Folio. I made these using trimmed and decorated C6 envelopes (7), black card, hot pink marble paper from Lizzed Creations, Stampin' Up punches, brads, gold thread and beads. The idea was adapted from a template I found on Phillipa Barr's Lime Tart Blog. I designed and included several copies of a template to keep track of those special dates that require us to make that extra special card and/or gift for. I made sure I included a template indictaing MY birthday in every folio!!! LOL!!!




Date Folio - Open




Date Folio - Open
Jan - June




Date Folio - Open
July - Dec


My second gift was a Key Chain. I used mat board, trimmed to the shape of a tag, for the backing and made a key hole mould from one of my favourite Krafty Lady Art Moulds. I painted it with a mixture of Old Brass and Metallic Gold Lumiere paint with a touch of Indigo 'Treasure Gold' (like Rub 'n Buff) smeared across the surface.




I used one of my favourite stamps from Stampers Anonymous to decorate the back of the tag.




The swaps were due by 30th November and have now been swapped out and are winging their way to their new homes as I post this message. 'Santa' Sweet Pea, 'Christmas Elf' Chrissy and 'Christmas Elf' Maggi have done a wonderful job swapping all of the gifts and deserve to be congratulated on all counts. You girls ROCK!!! LOL!!!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Thursday, 6 September 2007

Very productive day......


I participate in a couple of monthly swaps in my Yahoo group Boomerang Stampers List (BSL). One of my favourites is the GTKY (
'Getting To Know You') Swap. The swap involves sending a card to a designated partner each month accompanied by a letter which provides a little bit more information about yourself. It's a great swap because it allows you get to know your fellow group members better. I was a bit behind in my swaps (It seems to be the story of my life lately!!! LOL!!!), but luckily I had a very creative day yesterday and was able to catch up. Yippee!!! Hope you like the cards I created.

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

New challenge site......

I found a new challenge site for you. It will be especially interesting to those that have become addicted to 'inchies'. Check it out ( Inching Artists ) and have fun!!! LOL!!!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Saturday, 18 August 2007

Challenge Sites...

Here's my first attempt at one of the challenges that I'm 'HOPING" to complete each week.


Daring Card Makers - Frilly Bits...




This is actually going to be a page for a collaborative 'chunky book' to celebrate a good friend's 60th birthday. I began with a 5" X 5" piece of Bazzill and attached a smaller square of Textured Alcohol Ink background (Trish Bee Design Studio). I completed the page with a photo image stamp from The Stamping Ground (Wasn't Me - #10107), one of my favourite quotes from Penny Black (...angels... 2701F) and some golden lace and a wing. I was quite happy with the result and I'm confident my friend will love it!!! Well, I REALLY HOPE SHE DOES!!!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Friday, 17 August 2007

Black & White ATCs


I made 10 of these for an ATC Swap over on CCSwaps.



The theme was Black & White and I'll receive 9 different ATCs in return. I began with a black gloss backing card and added a slightly smaller piece of white c/s that had been sprayed with Black Webbing Spray. I stamped a Lucy's Stamp image (Serenity - sml 1591LG0) and a quote from Stylish Images (C2230) on a smaller piece of c/s again and distressed the edges of this with black ink. I added the little stars because I always associate stars with wonder??? I'm not really sure why, but I think they're the perfect 'finishing touch'!!! LOL!!!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Sunday, 12 August 2007

Altered Book - Art Shrine

I made this for my friend Jessie for her birthday.

I'm so glad she liked it!!!

Jessie's 'Art Shrine' began life as a small diary. Gel medium was painted along the edges of the book pages and a niche was cut from the middle. I painted the whole book with gesso followed by a combination of 'Metallic Gold' & 'Old Brass' Lumiere paints. I also added Stewart Gill 'Seraphym' Byzantia with a sea sponge to the front and back covers. I decorated the front with gold embellishments and gold embossed text & swirl stamps.


The image (front & inside section) was altered using Photoshop, to change the tonings from sepia to a combination of magenta/cyan. The 'goddess' torso bellie was made by mixing 'Eureka' (gold) & 'Macquarie' (turquoise) Opals from Pipe Dreamink and poured into a Krafty Lady Art Mould. The niche was lined with scrunched tight-weave netting and gold micro beads were spread around the mould.


The swirl images were stamped in Stazon and the shrine (Stampers Anonymous) on the inside and back sections was stamped onto acetate and embossed with 'Midnight Teal Obsidian' Two-Toned Moon Glow Embossing Powder.


The quote on the back is from Stamp-It (embossed with the Midnight Teal Obsidian) and says :

"The purpose of Art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls"
Pablo Picasso

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz



Saturday, 28 July 2007

Brisbane Stamping & Scrapping Marathon

I'm baaack!!! LOL!!! WOW, where do I begin. I travelled north to attend a 12 hour marathon organised by a stamp club, Southside Stampers Inc, from Brisbane. I drove to Queensland, stopping to pick up my friends, Rob & Dawn along the way, in my '1 week old' new car. What a great car - I love HER and I've named her LEXXIE!!! Anyway, back to our trip - we've all become good friends through BSL and we stayed in Brissie with other BSL members - Evvie & Bethel. The marathon was a charity event to raise much needed funds for the Australian Leukodystrophy Support Group. The day was just fantastic and the club managed to raise over $10,000. Congratulations Southside Stampers Inc!!! I must admit, I did my 'bit' towards raising funds, but I'm sure I didn't spend quite that much!!! LOL!!! I bought some new stamps and supplies and participated in 2 classes and 2 'make & takes'. I had so much fun and I've come home with some 'kewl' projects. Have a look at these, but just don't get too envious:



Arched Collage Card


Faux Linen Card


Collage Tiles


Tag Booklet - Closed


Tag Booklet - Open

We had an absolute 'ball' with heaps of art & craft and even more 'shopping'. You should have seen the car when we packed up to come home!!! I thought I might have to send one of the girls home on the train to save space at one stage. LOL!!!

Oh, almost forgot .... thanks for the great comments about my blog and my 'art'. I love the way our 'arty community' reaches out to each other and I appreciate your support a great deal.

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Monday, 2 July 2007

Even more swaps......



I hope you're enjoying some of my work. These are some more of the swaps from CCSwaps.

Until next time......


Cheers
Chris in Oz

Monday, 25 June 2007

But wait there's more......



CCSwaps is an international Yahoo Group. One of the regular swaps is the 'Alphabet Swap'. Sometimes I forget to take photos of my swaps (I know - 'ditz!!!'), these are some of the projects I've created since joining mid-way through 2006.

Until next time......


Cheers
Chris in Oz

Monday, 18 June 2007

Holding my breath to share some of my 'art'......

It's become quite obvious that I'm not going to be a 'daily blogger', but only post when I have something to share. I've been 'working up' the courage to post some of my 'art', so I thought I'd get 'brave' today and share some of my cards with you.

All of these cards were made for swaps for my Boomerang Stampers List (BSL) group. I hope you enjoy them. I'm holding my breath, so be nice......okay!!! LOL!!!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz


Monday, 11 June 2007

Welcome to my world......

Like many other stamp artists, I'm thoroughly addicted to Yahoo Groups. At this present time, I belong to almost 40 groups - I'm not active in them all, but I do receive individual e-mails or 'digest' on many and then quite a few of them are 'notice only' groups.

I'm an active member of the following groups:

Art-Venture
Boomerang Stampers List
Creative Cards
CCSwaps

and contribute when I have something to ask or say on these ones:

Find That Stamp
Janes Lab
New Idea Exchange
Spellbinders-Wizard
Stamp Happy

I've learned so much from my Yahoo Group memberships and have 'met' (both online & IRL) some truly wonderful people. I feel as though I have 'stamping sisters and brothers' all over the world!!! LOL!!!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz

Monday, 4 June 2007

The 'First' post......

I've finally decided to join the rest of the world, and have my own blog. 'My Creative Corner' will be a place for me to post photos of my projects as well as share ideas, techniques and basically whatever else takes my fancy.

Enjoy your visit and come back often!

Until next time......

Cheers
Chris in Oz