Nat’s Creative Hood – Join the Community

Are you looking for an online community to be a part of? In my recent survey, many of you said YES so I decided to put together a little FB group called Nat’s Creative Hood. Join our community and discover a friendly and engaging place to call home :)

What’s going on in Nat’s Creative Hood? This group, moderated by me, is all about community, connection, inspiration, and creativity. First and foremost it is a place where you can post and share YOUR work using my products, inspired by my artwork, or produced in my workshops. It is a spot where you can ask questions and chime in to good conversation relating to Nathalie’s Studio related work, techniques, and discussion.

On occasion I will post tips and tricks, fun art related stuff to get you laughing and thinking, and every Friday you’ll find a Fill-In-Friday post where you can fill in the blanks with your own words, ideas, and experiences.

Join Nat’s Creative Hood and enjoy an engaging place where you can share your artistic joy with a whole bunch of interesting and creative new friends!

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Artist Quote of the Week – Paul Klee

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Creative Squad: Mail Art – Jordan Hill

Hello from my Creative Squad! Today we are at the end of our month with Jordan Hill and a set of really cool envelopes using my #keepyouposted stamp set and our theme: Mail Art – During these times of social distancing, old fashioned mail is a fun way to keep in touch and lift someone’s spirits. Create some mail art, and then actually send it off! Address it, put a stamp on it, and put it in the mailbox. You will make someone’s day :)


Hello everyone, I’m excited to be back with my second project for the Creative Squad!

As someone who is quite fond of finding different ways of exploring mixed media, this month’s theme of “Mail Art” was particularly intriguing! For my project, I decided to work on some blank white envelopes, using them as a surface in much the same way as I might an art journal page.

Without dragging this out any further, let’s get into it!

The first thing I did to get this project started was lay out some blank envelopes on my work surface. Then I scraped some neon yellow paint across the surface using an old debit card. This is one of my personal favorite methods of adding paint to pages, as it is quick and adds the color thinly and evenly.

Once the paint had dried, I used the blank postage stamp design from Nathalie’s #keepyouposted stamp set in the upper right hand corner of all of the envelopes I had prepped. When I get around to mailing these, it will make the perfect border for the stamps! I then glued some polka dot tissue paper down to the envelopes using Mod Podge.

Next, as I do with most of my projects, I decided to add a face (I used CraftSmart Natural Beige here). For this particular figure, I gave her a long, flowing hairstyle that covered the entire middle part of the envelope. This gives me a place to write the address later. At the same time I was adding the color Light Blue to the hair, I also added the same color to this girl’s shirt, and created an additional rectangular shape in the upper left for the return address.

Using a Pentel Hybrid Technica pen in size 06, I then started to add line art to my figure. Her features weren’t standing out nearly as much as I wanted them to, so some thick black lines did the trick perfectly! I also made sure to leave plenty of space inside the hair for addressing the envelope.

For the finishing touches on the front side of the envelope, I added some additional lines (reminiscent of the hair strands) to the outside of the space for the return address, some more neon yellow paint around the edges of the figure, and some little doodled stars. I also added a bit of Martha Stewart Multi-Surface Coarse Glitter to the cheeks and shoulders of this girl for a little extra sparkle.

For the back side of the envelope, I decided to keep it a bit more on the simple side. When I scraped the front side of the envelopes with neon yellow, I had some leftover on my debit card, so I scraped the leftover onto the backs. Then, using the same Light Blue paint from the front and a paintbrush, I made some simple marks along the right side. Lastly, as the final finishing touch, I used the #savetheusps stamp from Nathalie’s #keepyouposted stamp set to add a fun little bonus detail to the flap of the envelope!

And there you have it; a simple way to create beautiful envelopes for any of your mail art needs! I had a lot of fun working with this particular stamp set, although it was a bit out of my comfort zone. I hope you liked this project and try decorating some envelopes of your own!


Thank you Jordan! These are so fresh and fun – would love to receive an envelope like this in the mail :)

Give it a try: you can find all my Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Jordan used:

Don’t forget to check out Nat’s Creative Squad on Instagram too: Each week we post projects, ideas, and inspiration for mixed media art.

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Inspired By: Coney Island & Brighton Beach

A couple of weeks ago we spontaneously decided to head out to Coney Island. Guess what …never been there – which is ridiculous given that it is a short ride from here (well longer by subway). But we finally did it and it was fun even though after season.

Love all the colors and dorky vantage signs and I love this color combo of navy blue, light blue, pink and orange. Def. a good color combo in my book to keep in mind.

As you can see not many people there at this time of the year but it was sunny and beautiful.

I do love a good boardwalk for sure.

Super fun building and not sure if you can spy it but the two figures on the top are wearing masks. Coney Island may seem a bit vintage-y but has its finger on the pulse of time LOL

Love the murals on the side of the – I think aquarium but I might be mistaken.

Another nice color combo with the different yellows and blue and some black.

Hahah- you gotta love New Yorkers and their signs …I mean …why sugar coat

Loved all the lines and the Cyclone sign is awesome. The Cyclone is a wooden roller coaster from 1927 and still runs during the season. I have had many friends telling me it comes with serious back problems – LOL. but I think one day I want to try it. Have you been on it yet? Let me know how it is.

Also a fun view.

And those fake vintage signs were fun on the side of a building. Love the very saturated colors.

Stickers everywhere.

Nathan’s was unfortunately closed but the sign still brought me lots of joy. I mean I am German after all and we do like places that sell sausage ;)

It was wonderful to walk at the beach a little bit.

Couldn’t explore this area further where a lot of free standing walls with murals were standing- since it was fenced off. But maybe next time.

A couple minutes from Coney Island is Brighton Beach also known as “Little Odessa” due its tight-knit Russian and Eastern European communities which is reflected by the stores and signs.

I wanted to go there because of it’s interesting architecture in terms of apartments buildings build around 1900- 1930s

The brick work on some of those buildings is just amazing – alternating colored bricks making patterns and adding interest

Raised bricks forming patterns. And those are huge buildings. Amazing!

Loved the wonderful iron door and also the entrance tiles.

An wonderful art deco apartment facade with chevron and speed lines. You know I have an art deco crush, no?

Be still my heart – look at this magnificent entrance and the wonderful colored terra cotta tiles. I could not stop swooning in front of this building.

Another incredible entrance. Sometimes the building itself was built pretty simple but the entrance was always done in a grand way.

Loved the paving in a front yard towards the entrance- great pattern! I actually took the photo because I have three stamps that could make this pattern up :) Maybe you see something soon that resembles this pattern in my art journal ;)

Loved the blue painted bricks in the facade and the blue fire escape. 

It was a great day – we had fun exploring a different area of Brooklyn . I cannot wait to explore more. 

Comments (3)

  • Lani

    |

    Such a fun trip down memory lane.
    My parents were dating when they went to Coney Island, as I did later with my husband. I still have a knife left from the set we won at the “bowling machine”.
    I went to kindergarten with Nathan’s grandson (Handworker) @1951.
    For years, my parent’s would wake me up in the middle of the night because they wanted a Nathan’s hot dog and couldn’t leave me alone in bed on Ocean Pkwy & Ave. K.
    When I was 18 I “ran away” from home and became a nanny in Brighton Beach Towers. I often shopped under “The El” in B.B.and at the “Shlock” shop owned by Neil Diamond’s parents. This was all before the Russians (rumored to be “The Mob”) took over. I baby-sat Lieba & Neil Sedaka’s kids also; friends of the people I worked for. My husband’s grandmother lived in one of those buildings. And his parents lived in a co-op 1 train stop before Coney Island.
    That was before we left to live in our VW van for 3 months, ending up here at the beach in Hermosa Beach in 1970.
    It has been a strange and winding road!
    🎶Thanks for the memories…🎶

    Reply

  • vivian

    |

    Your ‘eye for photos’ is awesome!! Not the usual ‘eye’ but SO creative! I love the ART DECO
    also, a very special time in architecture and architects.

    I also want to say this was also a study of ‘fireescapes’ against the lovely patterned brick walls.

    SO MUCH INSPIRATION!!

    Reply

  • Marge

    |

    Thanks for the great pictures, they bring back many memories for me. Marge

    Reply

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Seasonal Spectacular Sale – in the shop NOW

It’s time for a Seasonal Spectacular Sale to get things started for the holidays! My BIGGEST sale of the year begins today and you can save 25% off all physical products in my online shop now through Cyber Monday, November 30th.

Rubber stamps, stencils, foam stamps, original paintings, mugs, giclee prints, original prints, and much more are all 25% off – just use the coupon code SEASONAL25 when you check out.

Even my newest items are eligible so yes those #KeepYouPosted rubber stamp sets are in it while supplies last!

 

This is a great time to save big on some of my favorite rubber stamp sets like Fan-tastic Large and Circle Jumble Large:

Also it is the time to pick up a set of foam stamps for some bold block printing on paper, fabric and beyond like my Midtown Set or my Mini Tile Set:

My stencils come in so many patterns and styles…

Or my Artwork that makes a super special gift for another or yourself :)

There are lots of items to choose from, so I hope you visit the online shop HERE and take a look around. The sale ends November 30th and is valid while supplies last. We’ve restocked a ton of favorites so we hope you enjoy!

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A Look Back – Cool Stuff You May Have Missed 22 – Paper Clay

A Look Back – This time I’m looking at some things I’ve done with clay over the years. Sometimes I’ve used paper clay to make 3D elements for mixed media work and assemblage pieces. Other times I’ve created small clay bowls and plates using rubber stamps and foam stamps for texture and pattern. Read on and I hope you try some of these project ideas!

A Look Back is a blog series to show you some projects and posts that you may have missed – sometimes going WAY back in the archive. I think it will be fun to revisit a few ideas that we haven’t seen for a while. I’m excited to see how a little look back might inspire something new in the future :)


Back in 2012 I participated in a little Altered Brush challenge and created a clay heart as part of my finished piece. Check out the original post here. Paper clay takes all kinds of acrylic media well, so you can paint it and adhere things to it quite easily. And you can make any sort of collage element that you need – your imagination is the limit.

 

Also in 2012 I experimented with creating small circular clay collage elements that I used in this mixed media canvas. Need real dimensional elements for your work? Paper clay is easy to work with and lightweight.

 

Then in 2013 I used a leftover clay piece in this assemblage for the Whatevers group. The Whatevers would create mixed media pieces inspired by old photos and part of the fun was making up a little story about the people in the photos. Check out the original post here to see the full piece including the vintage photo part :)

 

One of my favorite ways to use a product like paper clay is to make small bowls and plates. They aren’t foodsafe, but for trinkets, rings, or keys they make a beautiful decorative object. I like to roll out my clay and then stamp patterns into it with my rubber stamps. Then once it is dried you can highlight those designs with acrylic paint. Check out this 2015 post here.

 

An equally cool way to adorn paper clay bowls is with my foam stamps and moonlight duo ink pads. I showed this method on Day 27 of my 2019 Foam Stamplifier Challenge. I loved using my Far Out, Groovy, and Jazzed foam stamps for this one because the simple marks work so well with the simple form of the objects.


I hope you enjoyed this look back and are inspired to try a few of these ideas using your mixed media supplies and tools along with paper clay.

Here are some of the supplies we used:

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Artist Quote of the Week – Joan Miró

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Creative Squad: Mail Art – Robin Seiz

Hello from the Creative Squad! Today we are continuing on our Mail Art month with Robin Seiz. She brings us “happy mail” that will brighten anyone’s day. She’s using my #keepyouposted stamps and our theme: Mail Art – During these times of social distancing, old fashioned mail is a fun way to keep in touch and lift someone’s spirits. Create some mail art, and then actually send it off! Address it, put a stamp on it, and put it in the mailbox. You will make someone’s day :)


I absolutely love this new collection of #keepyouposted stamps by Nathalie; it’s so versatile. Although we are past voting day, this stamp collection has some great messages about LOVE. Honestly what could be more important than LOVE right now. (or anytime for that matter!) When I started playing with this idea of LOVE, I thought about rainbows. I don’t know about you, but whenever I see a rainbow, I stop and admire it. It gives me a warm, peaceful feeling, which feels like LOVE. 

I have been sending lots of Happy Mail out to friends and family since the pandemic began. It’s been a wonderful way to keep in touch and I love making cards. The combination of a great stamp collection and the desire to make Happy Mail was perfect for this project. 

I began with some watercolor paper, (5″ x 3/34″) a brush, Nat’s stamp collection, Golden Qor watercolors, and my acrylic block.

Next, I painted the rainbow. Painted rainbows always look so child-like to me, but I like the simplistic symbol of LOVE. 

Since there was quite a bit of white space at the top — the message, “You are my #1 priority” was perfect to fill the space and support the message of LOVE.

I immediately thought the message of LOVE should be crossing the rainbow and what better way than to have it flying behind a small plane. I drew the plane free-hand, again in that rudimentary style to mirror the rainbow. I splattered it with paint. This is a technique I often use to add a little pazazz to something, whether it’s a card or a project.

I stamped the LOVE stamp and also splattered the LOVE image with paint for consistency. 

I wanted these pieces to be out in front of the rainbow so I used some dimensional tape and adhered two small pieces of black string so it would look like the plane was pulling the LOVE sign.  Lastly, I did some more splatter to the entire card to make it celebratory. I cut the border out of yellow construction paper (5 1/4″ x 4”) and adhered it to the card and then put the watercolor paper on top of the construction paper for a layer card look. While this card has lots of steps; it’s easy to accomplish. 


Thank you Robin! I love the idea of a plane pulling the LOVE sign all over the skies :)

Give it a try: you can find all my Rubber Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the other supplies Robin used:

Feel inspired? Working on something yourself that you’d like to share?  I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Comments (1)

  • Sue Clarke

    |

    Robin, this is so adorable and colorful!

    Reply

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The Lombard – New Painting

“The Lombard” is inspired by my Strolls through the Hood in Jersey City.

It shows a street view of the oldest pawn shop in NJ – H. Schoenberg, founded in 1895. I was thinking about how while this is type of business is a lifeline for folks, it also conjures sad feelings when I pass it and see the things in the window. So many complex stories and circumstances are in plain sight.

My overarching mood however is one of hope, and better times ahead, and hopefully the souls who visited the shop will be able to return once again and claim their instruments and heirloom jewelry as their own.

This original painting was made with spray paint, acrylic paint, gouache, ink, pencil, markers, pastel, and collage on canvas.

“The Lombard” is available in my Shop and would love to find a new home. 

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