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Old 03-13-2015, 05:29 AM   #1
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Question I'm rather practical, so I wonder about all this art people make....

I see SO many amazing creations, like canvas collages or assemblages or decorated boxes filled with artsy trinkets, etc. It is so fun looking at it all. But then the practical side of me asks "what do they do with it?". Do they give it away to someone? Sell it? Display it in their home? If it's displayed in the home, what do they do once they tire of it or run out of space? Toss it? My home is so small (one story, 1200 sq. ft., 3 kids and a small dog plus DH and me) that, while I do display much of what I make, I do eventually have to throw it out to make room for new things I create.

What do all you fabulously creative and artistically prolific people do with your art?
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Old 03-13-2015, 06:17 AM   #2
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Oh, you phrased that beautifully! I have wondered the same thing in a vague sort of way. I have a couple projects that have been made for me and eventually the paper gets bent or unglued or 'where do I put this now' and then I feel bad because someone made it for me...

That is why I make cards I guess, they are beautiful but at the same time more practical!
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Old 03-13-2015, 06:27 AM   #3
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Selling it or giving it as gifts is a good idea.

Donating it to nursing homes might be another one, so many of the residents have such bland basic rooms that a little art just might be what is needed to cheer them and their rooms up.
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Old 03-13-2015, 06:45 AM   #4
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If you're looking at designers' blogs, many of their projects are displayed by the companies they represent at trade shows. I gift some, and sell some. I do have some I can't part with, and they're displayed in my craft area.
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Old 03-13-2015, 08:12 AM   #5
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I used to work with two scrappers/cardmakers who got heavily into making altered mini books and albums. The finished results were gorgeous, and I was tempted to join them. But I did ask what their long-term plan was for display and storage. They had none, so I passed on it. I hate dusting with a passion, and these things were so embellishment-heavy that storage would also be a problem.

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Old 03-13-2015, 09:33 AM   #6
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I'm going to follow this thread because, while I love mixed media, I am not into journaling. Maybe someone will come up with other things I can do with my gelli prints and other mixed media experiments that are currently stuck in a drawer.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:33 AM   #7
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I've been wondering the same thing recently.

Don't get me wrong, I really love Papertrey Ink's style. But this past year, they have veered away from a clean and simple stationery style, and ventured into all sorts of strange items. Tiny little houses and villages with snow globes, stitching products that seem redundant to anyone who has a rudimentary skill, dies that are so complex and good for only one use, project kits that look like stuff overload. Their releases have just become too too too much product, and it has totally turned me off.

As someone who is constantly trying to control the amount of stuff I have, it just seems like a lot of crafters are destined for an episode of Hoarders. What are they doing with all the stuff? And even if I gave some a detailed snow globe village, what the heck would they do with it?
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Old 03-13-2015, 10:00 AM   #8
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A journalist friend of mine once shared his philosophy on ego: 'Today's news is tomorrow's fish wrap.' I figured if he could take that attitude with his career, I could take it with my hobby, lol! Whatever I create, I create with the knowledge that it's a temporary object. It tempers how much of an investment I'm willing to put into each creation. I still get great joy, no dust, no heartache when it's time to switch it up.
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Old 03-13-2015, 11:50 AM   #9
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Maybe it's a spring cleaning frame of mind or something but it seems like a lot of us are thinking along these lines lately!

Just before I clicked over to here, I had been to the PTI site as well, Maryrose.... and I had been thinking the same things as you. I haven't even been making cards lately except related to the business end of it (and I've never been good at sending cards anyway).

I'm not entirely sure why I started to drift away from paper, but I think the ideas brought up by the OP and others had a lot to do with it.

I've dipped into mixed media and polymer clay instead. They both seem more substantial, durable and purposeful. If I spent a great deal of time creating something elaborate from paper/cardstock, I would wonder what the heck would I do with it and how long would it last anyway? It just all seemed so temporary. I would never have something like that on display to get faded, wear, tear, and yes, need dusting (which doesn't work too well with paper IMO).

As others mentioned, I do admire the artistry and expertise of those who make these elaborate projects. But I also wonder what they do with it. I think the idea of donating to nursing homes is wonderful! That's so true - sometimes the surroundings can be blah... and it's almost better that it would come from a stranger. They'd have no sense of obligation to hang on to it... just enjoy it for awhile.
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Old 03-13-2015, 01:53 PM   #10
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When 'whatever it is' is ready to leave (gifted, recycled or trashed) I take a photograph and file in an album on my computer. That way, it lives on - but doesn't take up space.
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Old 03-13-2015, 03:49 PM   #11
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If you just want to create for creation's sake, you can always go 2D and art journal. Well, with embossing pastes and gesso, glass beads, etc. your art journal might be 2-1/2D LOL
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Old 03-13-2015, 03:50 PM   #12
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I've wondered about this, also, and have tried to steer clear of making any of these works of art. The little display space I do have in my craft room is already filled with little boxes or special cards. I'm still happy making cards and already have a storage system in place for them that requires no dusting.
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Old 03-13-2015, 04:47 PM   #13
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I battle this same thing too and have for years. I am terrible about sending cards and refuse to make cards with so much "stuff" on them I can't easily send/give them to someone. I also refuse to make any sort off 3D papercraft item because it is not durable and so seems wasteful to me. However, I NEED the creative outlet. so I make scrapbook pages - those will live on and be looked at for many years and store nicely in their albums, art journal pieces - also live nicely in their books and can be looked at later, mixed media pieces - these are displayed around my house. I do not yet have so many that I am out of wall space! I also try to keep "usefulness" in mind when I do other hobbies like sewing and crochet.
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Old 03-13-2015, 04:55 PM   #14
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Glad you asked, been thinking the same thing. I can say I do like those little houses from Paper Tray. I am sure I can find something to due with those little houses. BUT I am too scared to order from them, with all the issues they have.
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:31 PM   #15
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I have wondered this myself. Depending on what you create, some people store the items and swap them out. My ex sis in law, had two large paintings and she would swap them, half a year each. My husband and I also dont like to give large works of art out as gifts. We find it too imposing on a person's space. That is probably why I sell small mixed media pieces on Etsy. As for cards specifically I keep what I love, even if its in a box, and donate or trash the rest. Paper banners that ive made for special occasions I have kept so far and will trash if they get torn. I guess with me it depends if it falls under hobby art(cards), or fine art(painting etc.)
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Old 03-13-2015, 09:36 PM   #16
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Great thread with such interesting responses. Lots of food for throught.

I have this dilemma myself. I love to create things, but I am also quite practical at heart.

I love making cards and sending them, and I hear from friends and family that they love finding a card in their mailbox and that it cheers their day. That makes me feel I've done something worthwhile.

I think of cards as "of the moment." I try to let people know that I don't expect them to "save" the cards I send to them. But I've had several tell me that "I've kept every card you ever sent me." Some people are like that, and love to keep cards they receive.

I feel pretty good when I give someone a set of handmade notecards, because they will probably be used. I'm older, and of the generation that sent letters and notes, and many of my friends still actually write to people instead of emailing or texting, lol.

Something else I make and give are little decorated notepads and small purse size notebooks. Everyone seems to like them, and use them. One of my daughter-in-laws makes a reqular request - "If you have time, can you please make me another little notebook?" Warms my heart, for sure.
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Old 03-14-2015, 12:55 AM   #17
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I think this topic has been on my mind and I just can't get a kick start. I want to do projects that make me happy and possibly sell. I am with all on the cleaning and dusting. The fun to me is making the end project. If I give a friend of hand lotion she likes as a gift she will use it up and throw away. She enjoys it and into the garbage the container goes. I am so bad about keeping things way to long that someone made for me. I have told myself that when my friend made this for me I loved it at that time and time doesn't stand still so we have to let it go at some point. I also tell my friends they are allowed not to keep something forever...my feelings won't be hurt if they let it go. I just want happy for a while then move on!
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Old 03-14-2015, 03:52 AM   #18
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I don't make that many cards any more and my class attendees all want to do projects for displays and gifts.

I only have a few things I display in the main living area of the house and rest I rotate in my stamp room, give away, or donate. I also do some work in an art journal but it's not a fav.

I bought a cool frame from CTMH where I can easily rotate out 12x12 art on canvas. I change it for the seasons/holidays or whatever I make that I love.

All of my family always request one of my projects for a gift so I can easily rotate them out of the house. I have 4 requests from family members for the canvas shown below. I'm not really sure I want to make 4 of these.

My DIL works in a low income school and the kids don't have money for gifts and they love what I donate. Every so often I package up a box and give away.

Grandy, I also tell my family they don't have keep everything but they insist even though they know I don't keep what they give me forever. We all talk about minimizing so I have no problem with someone getting rid of what I give.

I don't see myself going back to just card making - it's too limiting whereas as nice empty canvas is heaven or a new box tutorial is a joy. I'll keep making and recycling.
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:02 AM   #19
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For similar reason, I can't bring myself to go to one of those Wine and Canvas parties. I know I would never display one of the canvases.

That said, I have made a few home décor pieces with my stamps and dies. I swap some of them out seasonally.
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:24 AM   #20
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That canvas is beautiful! There are so many details to look at. I can see why you had multiple requests for it! Having so many enjoy your art would be so motivating to keep creating!
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:31 AM   #21
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This thread pretty much nails several of the reasons I was hesitant to get into card-making, and DEFINITELY echoes my thoughts on 3-D paper items! I gave in to the card thing because it's "small art" and easily accomplished. I'm really, really bad at sending them out into the world, so I periodically box them up and give them where they will be used. I am exploring ways to use my stamps and inks and embellishments for more "permanent" projects, as I am of the same mindset as others on this thread - that this much time, energy and material could be better spent on something less ephemeral. I have other creative outlets and hobbies, though, so I don't stress too much about it - if I just make cards and give them away, I still had the joy of the making, and it is a good way to learn techniques or do experiments in small, manageable increments.

I do agree that much of the "product overload" in the industry has pushed things over into ridiculous! I'm still a bit cranky about dies that you can only use with particular stamps, although I do own a few (how's that for hypocritical?) It seems that everything is geared to "easier, faster, make it look professional", instead of relishing the joy of taking time and enjoying the process of doing something by hand and having an imperfection or two - or twelve!

We did a massive purge of our entire lives when we moved last fall, and I am being very careful about what stays and goes in our new apartment, as well. I agree with whoever it was that said to keep only that which is useful, beautiful and brings you joy - the rest is just "clutter", no matter who made it or how expensive it might be or anything else...
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:33 AM   #22
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Stamphappy1650 - your canvas is beautiful - forgot to mention that in my other post
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:35 AM   #23
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I am enjoying reading everyone's responses! Since I don't make bigger, more elaborate art, I had always wondered what was done with it all. I saw pictures of Tim Holtz's product line displays at CHA and while so amazing to look at, I also thought, "What happens to all this after the show?"

I make lots of cards and scrapbook pages. My cards I mail out, give as gifts, or put in a box at the back of my church for people to take. I also make some for a local antique store to sell. I also will make gift card holders, little tags to put in my family's lunch boxes, treat holders for special surprises, stuff like that. I do not mind a bit when people throw it away. The fun was in the creating.

When I make decor, it is something seasonal and fairly simple, like a banner or ornament or paper frame. When the item gets too worn and torn from use, I toss it. If any embellishments or ribbons on it are salvageable, I will reuse those parts in another project.
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Old 03-14-2015, 06:00 AM   #24
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This has been an interesting read, and I'm so much in agreement. I love the altered art so many people do, but have never got into it, as storage would be the problem. We have an old Victorian house- our room sizes are probably what you would call a closet, lol, and I'd just have nowhere to keep/display any of it.
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Old 03-14-2015, 07:12 AM   #25
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This has been a great post to read. I have wondered about some of these rather bulky scrapbook pages and even the really layered cards with all the flowers and embellishments. There is no way you can even put them in an envelope. But, that being said, I still really love the look of these projects and do even make them once in a while. I guess it just depends on my mood when I enter my craft room what type of project I will work on. Anyway, just love this board and love to come here in the morning and read my paper it makes me feel so much better than reading the newspaper these days.

Love your canvas Stamphappy.
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Old 03-14-2015, 07:26 AM   #26
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Interesting. There is something to be said for making something just for the pure pleasure of making it. Sort of like musicians. At the end of the song, there is nothing left to enjoy except the memory of the song.

On the other hand, paper and supplies are pricey, and take up space so we have to be selective as to what we make or we do have a hoard on our hands.

I find that I am inspired only when I know I am making something for a particular person or event. I try not to make cards just to have them sit in a box. Although sometimes that does happen, and if they sit too long I reconstruct them -- take them apart and salvage the supplies, and then just remember the fun I had in making them.
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Old 03-14-2015, 08:37 AM   #27
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So glad this thread was started. I share similar thoughts as all of you have expressed here. All the 3-D paper crafted art and mixed media pieces are amazing to look at and I am in awe of the talents and imaginations of the artists who created them.
But I always come back to the " but what do you DO with it"? thought.
I loathe dusting and I can't see myself taking the time to grab a soft brush and go around gently "sweeping" those intricate little paper villages or multi-layered floral fantasies to keep them looking their best. Even if I created a few pieces they would most likely be holiday themed and then storage becomes an issue.
I suppose I will go on admiring these creations online but stick to card making.��
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Old 03-14-2015, 11:37 AM   #28
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Well if dusting is keeping you from saving those treasures, that's what canned air is for!
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Old 03-14-2015, 12:11 PM   #29
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Great thread. Ditto. Would love to get into altered art, but I'm too practical. I love the idea of art journals, but would not know what to do with them. I'm trying to cut my clutter so I'm very careful about what I get addicted to these days....
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Old 03-14-2015, 01:06 PM   #30
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I love the art journals also but I would never finish one. (I know myself too well).
I am really bad about making a project to see how it's done and I enjoy doing it. Then I want to try the next new thing. I got up early this morning (also not me) and went with my husband for breakfast. Our Jo Ann's is moving next month and they have decent sales but I only "Needed" one thing. Of course I bought 2 things. I tell my friends to come and use some of my stash, you know there is always leftover product from every project. I'd rather it be used than just cram it in a box. I don't know what the answer is as to what to do with the stuff we make. I wish I had all the money I've spent but then my life would be so dull!
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:18 PM   #31
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I think of an art journal as a sort of scrapbook. It is a fun place to try new techniques or to do some journaling of thoughts accompanied by some art. They really don't take up much space at all!
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Old 03-15-2015, 05:34 AM   #32
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I've been expanding my craft into different venues beyond cards. I am now combining art with journals, bible journaling, and planners. It really does not take up much space, and in the end I have a useful product that is only for me. It also allows me to find another use for all of my papers, stamps, stickers, diecuts and washi.

I think I've always had a problem with the hand-crafted "giftable" items, because I look at them and my thought is "I wouldn't want to receive it, so why would I give it?" I never understood the Hershey nugget box trend...seriously? The container cost you fifty dollars to make with paper, diecuts, and supplies, but it's housing four pieces of chocolate that cost about fifty cents?! It's the totally impractical items that make me scratch my head. Give me a card with a Starbucks gift card inside! I will use that gift on a good latte, and won't feel guilty about recycling that card later!

(By the way, I'm the classroom mom who gets mad now because we cannot give one edible item at the class party, but we can give twenty five cheap items made in China that will end up in the landfill!)
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Old 03-15-2015, 07:53 AM   #33
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I have no idea, I don't have anymore wall space for random canvases. I mostly give away my crocheted pieces and cards though.
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Old 03-15-2015, 08:28 AM   #34
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Just wanted to jump back in with a thought that occurred to me while reading more of these responses: I still don't know what I'd do with too many altered canvases or whatever, and would probably only make projects like that if someone specifically requested it, but I DO see the value of an art journal. If my mother or grandmother or auntie or someone had kept an art journal and I discovered it or was given it, I would be over the moon thrilled! It would be a peek into their life and personality that would be so very personal and specific! I would be amazed and teary, I'm sure. Just a thought for those who are on the fence about art journalling (and I think I just talked myself into starting one).
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Old 03-15-2015, 12:14 PM   #35
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I just bought an art journaling magazine last night! I may get into that, too. I already sort of have since I have randomly participated in the mixed media challenges here. I took an old spiral bound desk calendar and used that as my journal. I painted over all the pages. Each page/challenge has a life's blessing for me on it. It's been fun!
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Old 03-15-2015, 01:54 PM   #36
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Wow, these are wonderful and enlightening posts!
I look at paper crafting as therapy or just fun! I love buying products and I don't care when I get to them. I make things and give them away and don't care what is done with it after it leaves my craft room. I sell cards to a friend that asks for them. I keep cards/projects as a reference sometimes but will throw them away at the drop of a hat.

When this hobby of mine starts to endanger others or leaves me hungry then I'll stop but for now....
I LOVE PAPER CRAFTING ALL SORTS OF THINGS because it brings me JOY. I hope I don't sound selfish.
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Old 03-15-2015, 01:58 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arizona Maine View Post
Wow, these are wonderful and enlightening posts!
I look at paper crafting as therapy or just fun! I love buying products and I don't care when I get to them. I make things and give them away and don't care what is done with it after it leaves my craft room. I sell cards to a friend that asks for them. I keep cards/projects as a reference sometimes but will throw them away at the drop of a hat.

When this hobby of mine starts to endanger others or leaves me hungry then I'll stop but for now....
I LOVE PAPER CRAFTING ALL SORTS OF THINGS because it brings me JOY. I hope I don't sound selfish.
Not at all! The first sentence in that paragraph is why - JOY is the whole point of EVERYTHING we do (or, at least, it should be...)!
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Old 03-15-2015, 06:12 PM   #38
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I guess a hobby is a hobby when it all comes down to it. Over time it's cheaper than therapy. I know my crafting has helped me through many rough times. I am also a painter and I remember going through one patch with one of my daughters as a teenager. I was painting a bench for a client and it turned out beautiful. I remember thinking at the time. "I can not do this but I promised." When my mind was on that painting I could shut out the world...lol. Therapy is expensive too. lol
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Old 03-15-2015, 06:59 PM   #39
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I am glad there is this thread! I was into mixed media before mixed media was main stream and I find I don't really like all the mess. Maybe, as one person stated, it's the feeling of spring cleaning because that is what I have been doing for several weeks.

I am veering back to when it was simple, some cardstock, stamps, ink, embossing and simple embellishments. I have a three drawer storage unit that contained so much paint and media stuff I had no idea how to use.

I did mini albums that took a looonnnnggg time to make. After I was done many people I gave them to didn't know what to do with them and I ran out of places so I stepped back from that as well. Just cards and scrapbooking for now.
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Old 03-16-2015, 05:47 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cnsteele View Post
I see SO many amazing creations, like canvas collages or assemblages or decorated boxes filled with artsy trinkets, etc. It is so fun looking at it all. But then the practical side of me asks "what do they do with it?". Do they give it away to someone? Sell it? Display it in their home? If it's displayed in the home, what do they do once they tire of it or run out of space? Toss it? My home is so small (one story, 1200 sq. ft., 3 kids and a small dog plus DH and me) that, while I do display much of what I make, I do eventually have to throw it out to make room for new things I create.

What do all you fabulously creative and artistically prolific people do with your art?
If we ONLY bought supplies with this thought in mind, we'd probably be a lot better off. I have started to think about this every time I want to buy something. Then I can worry less about what I do with the finished products!
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