Challenges have been discontinued, but I hope you will enjoy browsing through this wonderful archive of Alice-inspired art!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cheryl Baker's Altered Spool

Featured Artist: Cheryl Baker
Blog: Cheryl's Creative Cards & ATCs
Location: United Kingdom - Norwich - Norfolk

Cheryl first came to my attention when her submission to the Oh, Alice! teabag folding challenge caught my eye! One of the advantages of my being on the Oh, Alice! Challenge Blog design team is that I get to see all kinds of intreresting Alice creations. Cheryl is a great follower of The Altered Alice and you will see her kind comments on most posts!

Cheryl received some Graphic 45 Hallowe'en in Wonderland paper as an early birthday present, but I would say that we are all the benefactors of her birthday gift as we enjoy one of her lovely creations! Decorated spools (Cheryl refers to them as "poles") are a growing trend in altered art and I thought this one was very worthy, take a look! Click on any image to enlarge:
Great things can come from humble beginnings! Cheryl began with a kitchen towel roll core (paper towels for us Yanks) and two CDs! She covered these with beautful patterned papers. The base holds a tiny "Drink Me" bottle, a small key and a teabag folded flower.

On top we see the first of many flowers made from teabag folding. This one is centered with a lovely shank button, I think I have that same button on my jeans, LOL!  There are punched and embossed leaves, but notice how Cheryl used the sheet she cut the leaves from as a stencil and sponged some leaves onto the paper covered CD. She added circular motifs punched from the Wonderland paper.
Die-cut wings extend from either side of the top of this flight of fancy!  A touch of steampunk is added with all the different kinds of chains dangling from the edge, secured to the top CD in all differnt ways including string and jump rings. At the ends of the chains we see another teabag flower and a charm that might be made from an Idea-ology fragment charm; I love this softly colored vintage Alice image! We see the Mad Hatter proclaiming from the top of the pole and the Cheshire Cat is curled up at the bottom.

The Mad Hatter is swinging on his chain. Love the way the petals of the teabag flower echo the hours on the clock face.

The White Rabbit is represented by the "You're LATE!" sentiment tied to a steampunk gear.

I find the fall colors of this piece so warm and appealing. I love the mix of different types and scale of patterns. But the thing that appeals to me most is how the mixture of all these wildly different elements work together to make such an interesting whole. We have lovely teabag folded flowers with softly scalloped edges centered by pretty buttons, then we have steampunk chain and gears. We have a lovely vintage Alice charm and a piece of angular hardware labeled FOOD in a very bold, industrial font. Some things are connected by smooth polished jump rings and others are tied on with string.  It is this pull of opposites that balances this altered spool into a fabulous whole! WONDERful WONDERland creation, Cheryl!

I hope you have enjoyed Cheryl's altered spool as much as I have! Please visit Cheryl's blog and leave her a comment and see some of her other creations, many of which feature Alice in Wonderland! Cheryl always leaves me wonderful comments and calls me Hun, so it will be fun to send some love her way. And please leave a comment here for me before you go!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Hella Sjolund: Twinkle, Twinkle Little Bat....

Featured Artist: Hella Sjolund
Blog Home:  Hella Bella      Post: [Swedish | English]
Location: Sweden

When Sue Roddis of Jabberwocky emailed me the link to Hella's blog post, I laughed out loud. I think this free-standing piece featuring the Mad Hatter, White Rabbit, and Cheshire Cat will make you smile too! Take a look at Hella's WONDERful batty bit of WONDERLAND:

Click any image to enlarge.

 Hella started with three layers of corrugated cardboard cut into circles and stacked. The top was covered with a piece of textured card stock and the edges of the stacked discs were wrapped with flocked velvet diamond-patterned paper. The tree is supported by a wooden skewer poked through the cardboard layers, and the other figures are supported by "L" brackets made of cardstock. All images are Stampotique. 

The Mad Hatter is a combination of two stamps, one for the figure and another for the hat!

I love the added details of the pleated ruff and the hair! Notice the spade made of the textured card stock and how the watch has been added. 

And this cat looks suitably "Cheshire" to me!

I like the detail of the curled ends, one curled up and one down, which turns the sentiment panel into a scroll

I love it that it is taken from the song in the mad tea party scene:

"Twinkle, twinkle, little bat!
How I wonder what you're at!"

You know the song, perhaps?'
`I've heard something like it,' said Alice.
`It goes on, you know,' the Hatter continued, `in this way:--

"Up above the world you fly,
Like a tea-tray in the sky.
Twinkle, twinkle--"'

-- Chapter 7, Alice in Wonderland
  So of course we need a BAT!

I hope you are smiling too!  This Halloween scene is so full of whimsy and creativity that I could not resist sharing it with you. The color palette, limited to black, gray, white, orange and purple, adds a great sense of unity to all the disparate images and lends a spooky mood to the whole thing. I would not have been able to resist adding lots of color, particularly to the Mad Hatter, so I admire Hella's restraint with color all the more as it makes the piece much stronger.

I also admire the way Hella used very simple, readily available materials to create such a wonderful free-standing scene. While the figures are all still two dimensional and the piece is designed to be viewed from one direction, the impact of the depth added by this construciton technique is quite amazing. Most of us, if we had imagined this scene, would have used masking or layering to composite these images into a flat creation such as a card, art journal or some kind of wall art. Hella's move into a three-dimensional presentation really sets this piece way apart from the pack! Great job Hella!

Please visit Hella Bella (see the links at the top of this post) and leave her some love! Hella lists all the stamps used by both name and number. They are so quirky and really suited to this mad scene!

And please leave a comment here to let me know if you like Hella's scene as much as I do!