SMP Craft
3 May

Happy Pub Day! Create Your Own Collage, Draw People in 15 Minutes, and Pippa’s Magical Garden

What better way to pass the time on a less-than-idyllic spring day than by keeping your hands busy with THREE new craft books that go on sale today? We just can’t help ourselves. So let us help you draw, color, or cut & paste your way through the day…and maybe add a little decorative style to your home while you’re at it!

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First up: Create Your Own Collage: Cut, Color, and Paste Your Way to Fabulous Artworks and More by Lizzie Lees is packed with both colorful patterned pages and black and white printed pages that can be cut out, colored in, or customized and embellished, as well as pages full of stickers: everything you need to create your own collage masterpieces.

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There’s loads of ideas for getting the most out of the book, from making beautiful bird collages (like the one above!), to charming cityscape or nautical collages, to designs that can be used to create cards for your family and friends. Plus, some pages are perforated so they can be cut out, or folded and glued. There’s even two 4-page double-sided fold-out spreads inside for you to customize and display, so your home, office, or locker will be the envy of all!

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If drawing is more your jam, then you’ll want to pick up Draw People in 15 Minutes by Jake Spicer. By the time you finish this book you’ll have all the skills and the confidence you need to sketch people on the move or on the couch.

draw 2 draw1Professional art instructor Jake Spicer takes you through every aspect of drawing from life, from sketching bodies in a busy public space to drawing a model from real life or a photograph. Carefully crafted exercises break down the drawing process into easily digestible parts, while step-by-step tutorials demonstrate how you can create a full-length portrait in just 15 minutes. draw 4 draw 5With advice on everything from materials to use to how to get a person’s proportions right, including how to draw hands, feet, and fabric, this is the complete course for anyone who’s ever wanted to draw people. Suitable for all ages and skill levels, this follow up to Spicer’s Draw Faces in 15 Minutes is a step-by-step, learn-as-you-go book that encourages you to progress at your own pace. Beautifully illustrated, easy-to-follow chapters make it simple for anyone to create an amazing full-length portrait.

 

And last but (never) least, we have an exquisite new addition to your collection of adult coloring books: Pippa’s Magical Garden: A Coloring Book Adventure Filled with Fantastical Animals and Enchanting Gardens by Pippa Rossi is filled with magical creatures and wonderful plants for people of all ages to color.pippa 1

Enter through the castle gate and be swept away into a world filled with magical creatures and wonderful gardens. Be inspired by blossoming flowers and fantastical pumpkins and other vegetables. Encounter curious insects and beautiful birds, and visit the lake to catch a glimpse of the fish. pippasmagicalgarden_image91The garden is filled with many other animals too: there are hedgehogs, chickens, lobsters, dragonflies, grasshoppers, frogs, pigeons, and a rooster. pippasmagicalgarden_image97Team up with the stork and find the frog; meet the butterflies and all the other creatures, great and small, right out of the fairy tales of Pippa’s garden.

In the summer Pippa lives near her garden and lake. She works in the flower garden, vegetable garden, and the orchard, and she makes boat trips on the lake, which she reaches by walking down the steps from her living room.

The garden provides the flowers for the many bouquets that can be found in the artist’s rooms. Inside this book, complex flowers and plants are waiting to be filled with an abundance of colors.

Just as Pippa herself finds peace and tranquility in this paradise, you too will find stress relief and tranquility in Pippa’s Magical Garden. Better get your colored pencils, gel pens, or watercolors ready!

Pages from rossi- pippa's magical garden-3

Get your hands on one of these beauties asap!

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Walmart

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Walmart

9781250105370_FC

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Walmart

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21 Apr

CAUGHT CRAFTING: SMPCraft’s Spotlight on NYC Crafting

#SMPCRAFT #CAUGHTCRAFTING

Thursday morning, Astoria, Queens. Accessorizing with a lovely temporary floral tattoo she learned to make from DIY Temporary Tattoos: Draw It, Print It, Ink It by Pepper Baldwin!

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CaughtCrafting421

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8 Apr

Draw a Bird Day!

It’s sweet and inspiring the story behind the origins of Draw a Bird Day.

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As recounted on DabDay.com, in 1943, Dorie Cooper, a seven year old living in England, visited her uncle who was wounded in the war; he had lost his right leg to a land mine, and, in an attempt to cheer him up, Dori asked her uncle to draw a bird for her. Despite being unwell, her uncle looked out his window and drew a picture of a robin. After Dorie saw the drawing, she proclaimed that he wasn’t a very good artist but would still hang the picture in her room. Dorie’s honesty and acceptance of the drawing lifted her uncle’s spirits as well as several other wounded soldiers. In fact, every time Dorie visited the hospital, the soldiers held drawing contests to see who could produce the best bird pictures. Within several months, the entire ward’s walls were decorated by bird drawings.

Tragically, three years later, Dorie was killed after being struck by a car. At her funeral, her coffin was filled with bird images that had been made by soldiers, nurses, and doctors from the ward where her uncle had been. Ever since then, those men and women remembered the little girl that brought hope to the ward by drawing birds on her birthday, April 8th.

While Draw a Bird Day was never declared an “official” holiday, today, it’s celebrated worldwide “as a way to express joy in the very simplest of things in life and as a way to help soldiers everywhere forget war and suffering even if only for a short time.”

To celebrate Draw a Bird Day, simply draw a bird and share it with someone. If you don’t quite know how to start, follow Pen and Ink Birds from Gillian Johnson’s How to Draw Everything. And feel free to invent your own birds!

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Happy Draw a Bird Day everyone!

Interested in learning how to draw people? Faces? Animals? Flowers? Get your copy of How To Draw Everything now and get to drawing!

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Target
Walmart

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19 Jan

DIY Tissue Box Car Crafts!

Winter has officially arrived on the east coast. And with it sniffly drippy noses. On the bright side, those empty tissue boxes? Loads of crafting potential!

Grab those boxes, some scissors, and colored tape and Voila! Transform them into convertible race cars. The perfect craft to do on a snowy or cold day with the kids.

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Start with decorating the box with tape

Check out the finished convertible cars made by my niece (seven) and nephew (10) for direction and inspiration. They used colored tape for headlights, tail lights and the grill. For the windshield and wheels they used scrap paper and taped them on. My nephew, particularly crafty and artistic, also drew a paper man to sit in his new green convertible.

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Finished Tissue Box Cars by Sienna and Liam

The possibilities are endless! VROOM VROOM happy crafting!

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12 Nov

NO-SEW COSPLAY CREATION: Spider-Woman!

I’ve yet to meet a Nerddom hobbyist who doesn’t make really cool stuff. There must be some scientific explanation for it.

Desirae May Friesen, Tor & Forge Books Associate Publicist, whose special guest post you’re about to read, is no exception.

Inspired by the visuals at New York Comic Con and compelled to cosplay, yet faced with the challenge of not being able to sew, she designed an amazing sewing-free painted costume!

TAKE IT AWAY, DESIRAE!

New York Comic Con: the largest gathering of creators and fans of all forms of nerdy entertainment on the East Coast. I attended this last fall and quickly realized the highlight of the convention is all of the amazing and creative costumes–or “cosplay.”

Anachronistic Black Widow and Winter Soldier (WOW). Flickr Image by Steven Leung via io9.com

I was awed–and inspired. Here was something that could unite two of my biggest hobbies: nerddom and crafts!

And I immediately knew what costume I wanted to start with. Spider-Man has always been my favorite superhero. Recently Marvel created an alternate universe where Peter Parker’s girlfriend, Gwen Stacy, is the one who gets bit by the spider, gets powers–and becomes Spider-Woman (aka Spider-Gwen).

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Lowe, Hine & Latour Take Readers to the ‘Edge of Spider-Verse’: Dave Richards via Comicbookresources.com

Now the question was, how? See, there’s one problem: I don’t know how to sew. I can sew on a button, but despite my mother’s patient tutelage (she’s a professional seamstress) I never really managed to finish any projects. But I would not be stopped!

I already had black leggings and I found a plain white hoodie for the top.

This is where it got tricky. Since cutting out the design and sewing it together was beyond my meager skills I decided to try creating the design with fabric paint. I have no experience with fabric paint. But I am nothing if not daring.

I outlined the pattern with masking tape, checking first that it would stick to the fabric and come off easily without leaving a mark. So far so good.

I read the directions for the paint and then used the entire bottle of black paint for the front. I started out using spray paint, which clearly worked better as a splatter design–it was challenging to get a thick, even layer. So for the rest of the design I switched to liquid fabric paint and painted it on with a foam brush, again outlining it with the masking tape to get the clean lines of the costume design.

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Use LIQUID Fabric Paint

Once the black paint dried completely, I painted the inside of the hood with red paint. The red paint bled through the thin white fabric so I improvised a fix by buying a bottle of white paint to coat the outside of the hood (and fix a few mistakes in other places).

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WHITE Fabric Paint Touch-Up

Now I had to figure out how to do the design on the inside of the hood. Once the red paint had dried, I used glow-in-the-dark blue raised paint to make the web pattern.

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Use GLOW-IN-THE-DARK BLUE RAISED Paint for the webbing

I don’t recommend making a project up as you go along. It is definitely easier to do your research ahead of time and plan out your steps. But I DO encourage you to try out a project even if you’ve never done something like it before.

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DESIRAE MAY FRIESEN: Marvel’s SPIDER-WOMAN aka SPIDER-GWEN

Figuring out how to create something new was a lot of fun, even if it didn’t always turn out the way I expected. And even if I have the worst costume at the next convention I go to, I know that I will have as much fun wearing it as I did making it!

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CAUGHT CRAFTING: SMPCraft’s Spotlight on NYC Crafting

SMPCRAFT #CAUGHTCRAFTING Thursday morning, Astoria, Queens. Accessorizing with a lovely temporary floral tattoo she learned to make from DIY Temporary Tattoos: Draw It, Print It, Ink It by Pepper Baldwin!

PROJECT OF THE MONTH: JUNE DIY Father’s Day Gifts to MAKE NOW

PROJECT OF THE MONTH: JUNE DIY Father’s Day Gifts to MAKE NOW

Father's Day is less than three weeks away -- Sunday, June 19th in the U.S. -- just enough time to start prepping for what would make dear old pops feel loved....What dad, what MAN, wouldn't want to get a bright red tool box full of homemade BBQ, bacon, and chili flavored chocolate? Or a handmade Paracord hammock? Does he play golf?--hand dipped tees? Does he like to hike? Enjoy nature and the great outdoors? How about homemade beef jerky? Or does he enjoy watching sports--Remote Control Cookie? What about beer? One of the coolest new items coming out of Japan is a Frozen Beer Slushy Maker by Kirin Ichiban that perfectly pairs with the DIY black and tan soap! Scroll and click for more homemade DIY Father's Day gift ideas sure to make pappy happy! Hashtag #SMPCRAFT #DIYFATHERSDAY!

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