Inspired By: New York Botanical Garden

A couple weekends ago I thought I should check if there are tickets available for the NYBG and sure enough there were- so off we went spontaneously in the hopes that timed tickets would make for a less crowded adventure.

It was not super empty but nothing in comparison to pre-pandemic visitor times and it was a nice leisurely stroll. Loved the first signs of the upcoming Yayoi Kusama exhibiton there – the cheerfulness of her her sculptures are best displayed in nature.

This little Dude was also quite charming :)

It was beautiful even if a little bit too early for the full bloom of cherry blossoms – but the colors and signs of new life in spring are just so wonderful…and we do have a bit of a short spring season here. It might be my favorite time in NY though.

Daffodil Hill – where are the bunnies?

An old mill in the garden, and you cannot really see it in the photo – there is a group of painters sitting at the edge of the stream and I thought -what a great and relaxed way to spend a sunday morning.

Even masked up the smells were amazing- Magnolias revealing themselves with their perfume before you would even see them.

I am always intrigued by the fragility of Magnolias although they do look so hearty when the flowers start to come out. There was another young man painting magnolia petals.

Little floating silver balls- probably also part of the installation – we didn’t really stop here as this was the one spot in the garden that was pretty crowded.

In the rock garden, so beautiful !

My favorite- I loved the gnarly tree stem with all the beautiful lines and then the soft violet flowers – that was the moment I regret not having a sketchbook with me.

And I loved seeing those little tree dresses – also for the Kusama exhibition – it made me smile. What a beautiful day we had- and I hope you enjoyed strolling with me through the NYBG. I won’t be going to the Kusama exhibition as I fear it will be just a bit too crazy there and on top it is also quite a schlepp to the Bronx, but I am glad I saw some spring flowers, and polka dots- what more can you ask for ;)

Comments (2)

  • Robin

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    This and the high line are at the top of our list for places to visit. We were supposed to go last summer, but stupid covid! Hoping to get there this year!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      you I hope it works out soon- and the Highline is amazing at any time- did you see the documentary on the Highline Treasures of NY on PBS? – I think you would love to see it if not – it has the landscaper from the Netherlands on talking about his plans and why he choose which plants- as you are such an amazing garden planner, I know you would enjoy it.

      Reply

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April ArtFoamies Challenge – Day 19, 20 & 21

Are you playing along with Nat and Sarah’s April ArtFoamies Challenge ? You can follow along on my Instagram feed daily with videos and photos, and I post updates here on the blog too from time to time throughout the month. Today I’m recapping 19, 20, and 21. Enjoy!

Day 19 – Circle – These Mini Motifs foam stamps are inspired by carvings in our fireplaces. Every one of the four mantles has different carvings. That Dude went all out with the chiseling. He must have known that 140 years later a weird lady from Germany would become obsessed with the patterns on the fireplaces …and there we come full circle.

Here is a look at April 19:

 

April 20 – Stellar – Started out with the Beacon Stamp from the Mini Tile Set as it makes excellent start patterns but then I thought it really needed more and added the Santiago stamp as an accent on top. Stellar decision if I dare to say so …patting myself on the back – LOL

Here is another look:

 

April 21 – Hip Hop – Mixing the very graphic Space Oddity hexagon stamp up with one of the triangle stamps from our Triple Play stamp set created by Marsha Valk, Birgit Koopsen and me. The design for this Triple Play triangle is actually by Marsha and I love how those two go together. Nice fusion.

And another look at April 21 Hip Hop-

Follow along with the challenge on instagram  and post your artwork too with the hashtag #artcollabChallengeAccepted

Here are some of the supplies I used:

Comments (2)

  • Sue Clarke

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    Now I have some inspiration for making patterns with my art foamies.
    Love that ledger paper.

    Reply

  • Janet

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    Oh…swoon! I love the mini motifs on that gorgeous old ledger! I have my great-grandfather’s old ledger and have been wondering what to do with it. Now I know! Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

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Creative Squad: Another Door Opens – Robin Seiz

Hello from my Creative Squad! Today we have a beautiful little journal from Robin Seiz, sharing with us her experiences over the past year, and using my Triple Play stamp set and our theme: Another Door Opens – There is this saying, “when one door closes, another door opens” that basically is an optimistic way of looking at change in your life. Create an art journal page with this in mind, however you’d like to express it, however the idea inspires you to create!


This month’s theme was about emerging. When one door closes, another one opens. I am a strong believer in this saying.

I haven’t journaled or written much about the pandemic, yet I feel like I have “processed it” in the daily moments as the days and months have unfolded. It’s been a year of ups and downs for me. It felt really scary in March, 2020; it was a dark time. I really missed seeing family and friends, especially my children and grandchildren. As the months went on, I got into a rhythm; a pandemic pace, if you will. I spent enormous amounts of time in my studio creating. One day rolled into another; I wasn’t sure how a week had flown by. We developed our pandemic pod and learned how to see a very few friends in a socially distanced way.

By June, I was feeling better. We had learned how to get what we needed, we had our systems down, we were zooming with friends and family with the warmer weather, we could get outside.

By the fall when we were moving indoors, it felt disheartening. I really couldn’t fathom the thought that our long standing Christmas traditions had to be put on hold. We managed to quarantine and test and could at least have my children and grandchildren in for a gathering. We did everything we could to mitigate the risks. My partner and I made our own new traditions, which we have decided we will keep. A silver lining!

By January, I was feeling like this pandemic would never end. I was still enjoying the studio and vowed to get out everyday for a walk, even in the cold. And then the spring came, vaccines were on the horizon and it seemed like there was a glimmer of hope.

If I think about the doors closing — for me that included an over-scheduled life; all wonderful things, but just too many of them. I have come to really appreciate the “pandemic pace” and it’s opened the doors for a different way to think about family gatherings, what I add to my plate, and how I spend my time post-pandemic in a way that brings me joy everyday.

I used Nathalie’s new Triple Play Foam Stamp to illustrate what I just verbalized.

I started with an 8 x 5 Strathmore watercolor journal. I spritz it with water and lightly added some Quor watercolors to the pages, just so I wouldn’t have a blank page. I used grays and blues. Then I splattered black paint on the left page to represent this dark time. Next, I put black water color on all but one side of the hexagon. I wanted the one side open so the triangles could emerge from the opening.

On the left page, I stamped the same triangle in black signifying those first few dark months. and how I felt. Then I used more grays and a different triangle to show how I settled into a routine of sorts. By Christmas, the triangles are emerging, but it’s a little scary.

On the right side, the page becomes more hopeful, but as January arrives, it’s sad again and it seems like it will be a long winter. As the months go on and spring arrives, the news of vaccines is better, my colors are more hopeful. The last stamp, the sun, ends with the day I received my first vaccine. We can do so much with color to select feelings. It can tell a story on its’ own. I was also selective about which triangles I used to tell my story. The tulips and other spring looking triangles were used at the end. And finally, the sun, always a symbol of a new beginning to me. 

The message for me in all of this is to hold on to the things that have given me joy during the pandemic, to cherish every moment of being with those we love, and to honor this time as a a moment when the world slowed down. 


Thank you Robin for sharing such a thoughtful page – there are so many familiar emotions and ideas here that I know will ring true for almost all of us. What a beautiful representation of them!

Give it a try: you can find all my Foam Stamps in my Online Shop and here are some of the supplies Robin 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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Hop into Spring – Free Shipping Days End TODAY!

We’re celebrating Spring here at nStudio!

Hop into Spring with us: Free shipping for customers in the US ends TODAY, April 19th at 11:59pm EDT: If your cart totals more than $25 of physical products in my online shop HERE, you can get free shipping in the US.

Just enter the coupon code APRIL25SHIP when you are checking out and all those goodies will get shipped to you for free! 

It’s a great time to buy Foam Stamps, Stencils, Rubber Stamps, and even Artwork. Enjoy!!

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April ArtFoamies Challenge – Day 18

Are you playing along with Nat and Sarah’s April ArtFoamies Challenge ? You can follow along on my Instagram feed daily with videos and photos, and I post updates here on the blog too from time to time throughout the month. Today I’m recapping Day 18!

Day 18 – Pattern – Playing with my stamps and making up new patterns is one of my favorite things to do as a breather moment. I rarely plan it out – which is probably a huge difference to anyone who is a pattern maker but I just love the random grabbing of two or more stamps and giving it a go. And well, I really like this pattern with my Manhattan and one of the Triple Play stamps… I take it ;)

Here is a look at April 18:

Follow along with the challenge on instagram  and post your artwork too with the hashtag #artcollabChallengeAccepted

Everyone approaches Challenges differently. This ArtFoamies Challenge that Sarah Matthews and I came up with has had me thinking about how I want to approach it. In the past my Foam Stamplifier Challenge #foamstamplifierchallenge I used all kinds of different media, so I didn’t want to repeat myself. I also thought about how Sarah usually uses ArtFoamies with ink pads, while I use acrylic paints and the first parameter became clear: I will only use ink pads for the challenge. The other challenge is that I purchased an old ledger journal and I want to turn it into a pattern book. I usually make my own pattern books by binding loose printed papers into a book. This method has the advantage that if a print doesn’t turn out too great it can be discarded. By printing directly into this 125 year old ledger I have no out. So using my foam stamp designs to create patterns into a ledger book with ink pads is my challenge for this month.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

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April ArtFoamies Challenge – Day 15, 16 & 17

Are you playing along with Nat and Sarah’s April ArtFoamies Challenge ? You can follow along on my Instagram feed daily with videos and photos, and I post updates here on the blog too from time to time throughout the month. Today I’m recapping 15, 16, and 17. Enjoy!

Day 15 – Plant – I love plants but unfortunately I am a really bad plant owner …so maybe printing a plant inspired pattern is a better idea ;) While my Jazzed and Groovy ArtFoamies were not designed with a plant pattern in mind- they definitely can stand in for that and I love the outcome. Wohoo for easy maintenance plants ;)

 

Here is a look at Day 15:

 

April 16 – Dots – Grove Street Positive and Negative Stamp is going to show off its dots today and since the Grove Street Path Station in Jersey City def. Is a route to get to Broadway… the Broadway Fan stamp made an appearance as well. I felt it needed a little bit of extra red omph, so for good measure I threw in one of my Rubber Stamps called Valley Road …because you know… sometimes you gotta change your plans.

 

And here is a look at Day 16:

 

April 17 – Layers – I love using the same patterned stamps but in different sizes, like my Batik 3 and Mini Batik 3 and then my Batik 4 and Mini Batik 4 – this was fun to stamp …and yes, the ledger is barely visible but it still adds to the whole. Keeping every ledger page pristine is overrated because why even bother stamping into it if you do. #myledgermyrules

 

Here are some looks at April 17:

Follow along with the challenge on instagram  and post your artwork too with the hashtag #artcollabChallengeAccepted

Everyone approaches Challenges differently. This ArtFoamies Challenge that Sarah Matthews and I came up with has had me thinking about how I want to approach it. In the past my Foam Stamplifier Challenge #foamstamplifierchallenge I used all kinds of different media, so I didn’t want to repeat myself. I also thought about how Sarah usually uses ArtFoamies with ink pads, while I use acrylic paints and the first parameter became clear: I will only use ink pads for the challenge. The other challenge is that I purchased an old ledger journal and I want to turn it into a pattern book. I usually make my own pattern books by binding loose printed papers into a book. This method has the advantage that if a print doesn’t turn out too great it can be discarded. By printing directly into this 125 year old ledger I have no out. So using my foam stamp designs to create patterns into a ledger book with ink pads is my challenge for this month.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

Play along with us and our daily prompts:

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Hop into Spring – Free Shipping Days are Here!

Let’s Hop into Spring with a Free Shipping Weekend for customers in the US: If your cart totals more than $25 of physical products now through Monday (11:59pm EDT on April 19th, 2021) in my online shop HERE, you can get free shipping in the US. Just enter the coupon code APRIL25SHIP when you are checking out and all those goodies will get shipped to you for free! Who doesn’t like a little free every now and again?

It’s a great time to buy foam stamps like my Mini Fan Set or my Triple Play Set:

All my stencils are part of the deal too. Like my Star Struck or my Art Nouveau Wallpaper stencils:

Or how about a few of those rubber stamp sets:

Be sure to check out some of my favorite art supplies also like Moonlight Duo ink pads and Boundless Brooklyn mini cardboard model kits:

 

Enjoy all these and lots more. Take a look here and get free US shipping on cart totals of $25 and more, now thru Monday, April 19th at 11:59pm EDT.

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ArtCollab – Episode 2 – Challenge Accepted

Our latest episode was such a fun time with my friend Sarah Matthews. We were talking about the topic of challenges and it was great to have the live audience along to ask questions and chime in with their experiences as well. Watch the recording:

ArtCollab – Episode 2 – In this live zoomcast we discuss why we do challenges, how to have fun with them (and not stress), and all the benefits we get out of them as artists. We share our latest collaboration – the April ArtFoamies Challenge (as we are both ArtFoamies stamp designers) that we put together for the month of April. We show you our artwork so far, explain some of our creative choices and the other challenges we encountered along the way, we talk about why we wanted to collaborate on a challenge in the first place, and why you don’t need a reason to create.

We also chat about thrifting, our love for vintage items, the enjoyment we get out of our artistic journey, and at the end we surprise each other with boxes we sent each other for the next ArtCollab ZoomCast.

Follow the April ArtFoamies Challenge on Nat’s Instagram and Sarah’s Instagram

Sign up for my Newsletter for info on the next episode – New episodes are LIVE so we hope you tune in :)

You can find info and watch past episodes of ArtCollab in the Community section of my website HERE.

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April ArtFoamies Challenge – Day 13 & 14

We’re on Day 13 and Day 14 of Nat and Sarah’s April ArtFoamies Challenge today! You can follow along on my Instagram feed daily with videos and photos, and I will post updates here on the blog too from time to time throughout the month. 

Day 13 – Fun – I decided to go to town, well literally LOL, using my Midtown and Midtown Mini foam stamp sets and just layering those babies up. I miss going to the city – it is only a 15 min subway ride for me to Manhattan – and after over a year of not really going there I could use some fun in the city. Soon – I am hopeful – and meanwhile… I am having fun in my ledger.

 

Here is a look at Day 13:

 

And the April 14 – Wow – As in “wow” lady you cannot stamp straight LOL- but oh well – that is what you get when you do not want to stick your grey hair under the camera …On another note it really wows me how repetition in color and stamps works …all the time – I like this pattern and on the ledger a lot. I used my Triple Play set and Santa Fe foam stamps.

 

Here is a look at Day 14:

Follow along with the challenge on instagram  and post your artwork too with the hashtag #artcollabChallengeAccepted

Everyone approaches Challenges differently. This ArtFoamies Challenge that Sarah Matthews and I came up with has had me thinking about how I want to approach it. In the past my Foam Stamplifier Challenge #foamstamplifierchallenge I used all kinds of different media, so I didn’t want to repeat myself. I also thought about how Sarah usually uses ArtFoamies with ink pads, while I use acrylic paints and the first parameter became clear: I will only use ink pads for the challenge. The other challenge is that I purchased an old ledger journal and I want to turn it into a pattern book. I usually make my own pattern books by binding loose printed papers into a book. This method has the advantage that if a print doesn’t turn out too great it can be discarded. By printing directly into this 125 year old ledger I have no out. So using my foam stamp designs to create patterns into a ledger book with ink pads is my challenge for this month.

Here are some of the supplies I used:

Play along with us and our daily prompts:

Leave a comment

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