Creativity has always been a huge part of my life because at the core…
It’s about freedom of expression. It’s an internal NEED and DRIVE that you are born with…one that has you creating something to express what’s in your heart, to tell a story, or simply to just find a little you time and “just be”. Creativity is pretty simple for me...I create, because I need to express myself – and because of that…all of my creations have a little piece of me and my heart in them.
For those of you that don’t know me personally…I’m a professional with many years experience in art, business, accounting, marketing and education - you can learn more about me and my background at my WEBSITE - JLynnJewels.com. Something you may not know, is that my last corporate position before “retiring” to start my own company, was with a major Arts & Craft retailer where I was hired to develop and implement a company wide Relationship marketing program based on people and community. During my career, I’ve been in the spotlight, and have had my share of prestigious feathers in the cap - but I have to say that the best part for me...is knowing that I have supported, inspired, taught and nurtured others to be creative. I take great pride in helping others learn new techniques and perfecting their skills. I'm a giver and love knowing that by helping others to trust their inner self, and inspire them to express what’s in their heart…it’s like ensuring that future generations will have these same blessings that make life so rich and full of happiness.
My most heart-warming award....
This special award was given for my work in the Franklin TN Special School District in conjunction with a group of fellow professionals that came together as volunteers to create a comprehensive system to help prepare students for career and educational opportunities. It was extremely rewarding, seeing the impact made by sharing positive and creative thoughts in an effort to help students succeed in all walks of life.
We all have challenges in life…obstacles placed in our path that often change our course, an opinion, or destination. But at the end of every day, no matter what…I know that I’m a happy person that believes life is too short, to not find the positive in every situation. Right now I feel extremely fortunate and blessed that my talents and skills have come full circle in unique ways. My background –well, I’ve shared many a tutorial, taught many classes, and plan to share more. But like any creative person, I also have a variety of supplies that I’ve had in my possession for many, many years – you know a closet full of “getting this because I’m going to do that…” and then it gets put to the back burner for another time. Sewing, Crafts, Painting, decoupaging, rubberstamping – oh my! My closest friends will tell you (because in all honesty they are just as bad…) that I’m addicted.
Now back in the late 90s – decoupage, image transferring, and memory wire (currently making a come-back) was all the rage – and scrapbooking was really at the early stages of its explosion, that has yet to slow down. I remember doing demonstrations on everything under the sun because that was my job - to educate and promote all the super new products (that of course would sell). It was the BEST job – so when I say I evolved with the arts and crafts movement – I literally did. My chronies and I have seen a lot of crafts come and go - and we've seen thousands of improvements made in products and technology.
Take this picture for example...this is a Scrapbook page showing my two children (top two) and my niece. In the mid-90s there was a "new" product - it was Transfer paper for fabric...at the time it enabled me to create a Sweatshirt for my Mother-in-Law using this exact layout. We've come a long way considering my son will be 22 and my daughter 18...and with transferring there are so many unique ways to transfer images digitally now...
Today I'm able to take any photo image or artwork, and digitize it to create home decor pieces and jewelry and then utilizing a century old craft as decoupage - create a variety of pieces. As shown below...a personal Photo and the "Live Love Laugh" digital artwork (copyrighted by LandofEnchantment on Etsy) created into a Scrabble Tile and used for this fun Car Dangler (or other finished jewelry designs too)
There are many craft techniques that have held up to the test of time – like decoupaging (not a hugely popular craft by itself...but when combined with Altered Art and more intricate Scrapbook layouts, you can begin to understand how it plays such an important role today). Decoupage/Collage is an art and craft form that dates back hundreds of years - and by the time 2004-05 rolled around, there were so many overlaps with people combining it with upcycling and repurposing their things. Lampshades, glass bottles, cigar boxes, paper mache, Woodies and yes - the wooden game pieces – including Scrabble and Domino pieces.
In 2001, after a move from Tennessee to Maryland, I knew I wanted to take pieces of my Watercolor artwork and put them in a frame or decoupage them to create a pendant...however that’s about the time my Wholesale jewelry business started taking off and I had to shift my "Burners" so that some ideas went to the back ones (which forced me to place certain wood Scrabble pieces in the back of my craft closet). And although I wound up taking a slightly different pathway...there were others (like Ryan of LittlePutBooks) with similar ideas that forged on as a pioneer in the world of Scrabble art pendants. My hat is off to her with a big BRAVO for forging ahead and paving the way for many others to do the same and build upon.
So who is Ryan of LittlePutBooks? She was the one who was persistent and kept doing things better and better until it all clicked, and she was selling Scrabble tiles left and right on Etsy in the mid-2000– sharing and educating all the while J - she’s professional and a nice person –so do yourself a favor and check out her links on Facebook, Etsy and her Blog...
One of LittlePutBooks first official Scrabble tiles sold on Etsy (2006)
There are many free Tutorials out there, but LittlePut's basic tutorial
includes royalty free (no copyright worries...) digital images.
It's a great starting place for beginners that want to try their hand
at decoupaging for crafts, home decor, ornaments and jewelry.
My philosophy has always been (and always will be) that the Arts and Crafts are made for sharing and bringing people together. I applaud those that have come before us, and know that there will be many people after us...so the best thing we can do in the here and now - is share the creativity, and support one another in our quest to create and speak from the heart.
SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT...this weekend it's our 1st
J-Lynn Jewels Scrabble Tile Designer Challenge!
You may see some of these JLynnJewels ART & Digital Print
Scrabble Tiles in one of our 30 jewelry designs!
Look for them in our "REVEAL"...starting this Saturday
You will also be able to VOTE for your favorite design through Friday 8/5/11
Participants were randomely chosen by random.org
Happy Creating! And if you're curious to know how I shifted my burners again to finally get my Watercolor Artwork on tiles - check in next week...
This is just "one" cabinet...lol