ah, the memories……

Last year I took part in the Crafty Chica Cruise.  It was a trip of many firsts – first cruise, first art workshop, first trip to California, first time in Baja…..  It was an incredible trip and & I’ll treasure the memories forever.  I met so many incredible people and learned so much from all of them.  I was REALLY intimidated at first because here I was just a paper crafter and the rest of the group were “real” artists!  The ideas and craftiness just oozed from them so easily.  I was struggling just to slap some paint on stuff.  I had to stop overthinking and just let it flow.  My sister was with me on this trip and her advice was invaluable to me.  She really helped me get my confidence back after that first day.  After that, the days just flew by. 

Since then everytime I need a little inspiration, I think about the trip and remember all the great stuff I learned.  Everyone was super nice and I hope to continue to keep in touch with as many of the members of the group as possible.  They all taught me that art and being crafty is what I make it – it’s organic.  You can’t force it and if something isn’t working at that moment, try something else.  You might be surprised by the results and like it even better. 
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to take part in this year’s Crafty Chica Cruise, but I think I might be able to go next year.  Can’t wait!  In the meantime, here are a few pics of me and some of the stuff I made on the cruise last year……
This is the calavera I made.  I started out just painting the skull with swirls and flowers.  I ended up dressing him like a luchador.  I even put a bit of bling on his teeth!  He looked so cute.  Unfortunately he didn’t survive the trip home from Cali.  The girl at the UPS store didn’t realize how delicate he was and his body got mangled when she packed him with the other stuff I shipped home to Chicago.  Oh well!  One more opportunity to make another one!  :)
This is one of the “pages” from the canvas book I worked on. 
Below is the front cover.  The colorful strip of stuff at the top is a bracelet I made in one of the workshops. I think the only theme that ties the book all together is the fact that I made it.  I end up doing something different on every page.  It doesn’t have a common theme.  I have images of tattoo art, Day of the Dead and low rider chicano designs on the back cover.  I painted, stamped, stenciled the pages and added embellishments like shells, cut fabric, stickles, beads and charms.  I still need to finish off the edges of it so the stuffing doesn’t come out since I decided on having puffy pages.
And this is me with the work in progress.  Camera-shy me and the Crafty Chica herself, Kathy Cano-Murillo, decided to surprise me by taking my pic while I was hard at work.  :)

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