Ali Edwards Capture life. Create art.

September 2, 2008

Three Things : Creative Books (+ a giveaway)


Three books to inspire, challenge and fill you up creatively this week:

True Vision: Authentic Art Journaling by LK Ludwig : I got to meet LK at Artfest last year and enjoyed her art just about as much as her personality. I ordered this book last night and am looking forward to some new ideas (it's been quite awhile since I picked up my art journal). After looking through the next book on the list (see below) I have some good ideas for backgrounds to try.

Acrylic Revolution by Nancy Reyner : This book is packed full with techniques for working with acrylic paint. I have been looking through it the last couple of evenings, dreaming about potentially doing some painting, and being really inspired to get out my paints and try something new and different (new + different for me).

Taking Flight: Inspiration And Techniques To Give Your Creative Spirit Wings by Kelly Rae Roberts : I was lucky to see an advanced copy of this book on my recent girl's weekend and I can't wait to get my own. There are a bunch of mixed media how-to's as well as a lot of words (of which you know I am a fan – I like to know the thoughts behind the actions whenever possible). According to Kelly Rae, "this book isn't a traditional how-to book, but rather a book that dives deeper into telling our stories about how we came into the creative life – as a way to inspire others to stretch their wings and see what is possible for their own creativity."

Here's one of the Amazon reviews on this book:

Kelly Rae Roberts is an amazingly talented artist and apparently
equally gifted as a writer as well. This book is a journey from her
soul right into yours. It's part journal, part sitting around getting
deep with your girlfriends, part interviews with other talented artists
and part art instruction. So very different from other art books, even
from the same publisher. It goes above and beyond and straight into
your heart & head, making you think about your own creativity.

And until you find your creative spirit, the how-to make art
sections are very clearly thought out and well written. I know that I
will be able duplicate even the pieces that had materials I've never
used before.

This book is a treasure that I know I will refer to again and again.

I have two copies of Taking Flight to give away this week. To be entered into the drawing leave a comment below and let me know about your favorite creative technique is these days (it can be scrapbooking, mixed media, anything). Comments will be closed tomorrow (Wednesday) at 5pm Pacific and the winners announced shortly after.


[ Three Things is a weekly product series : check out the archives here. ]


  • 1.
    Anita said…

    Scrapbooking, but especially journaling. I am still putting my European Vacation on paper so I don’t forget a single details….and this will be included in the scrapbook.
    Love your blog and the inspiration you provide me.

  • 2.
    Sylvia said…

    my favourite technique is using loads and loads of gel medium to stick all my bits and pieces onto a canvas. after painting everything anyway!!

  • 3.
    Christine Villacarlos said…

    Those books look very inspiring indeed :)

  • 4.
    Joanne said…

    Hi Ali…mixed media is definitely my craft of choice these days….I’ve been playing and combining scrapbooking and that together, but working in my art journal is definitely my first love! Thanks for the giveaway.

  • 5.
    JoLynn said…

    I have been loving painting with acrylics. I am doing the Donna Downey Newspaper art journal.

  • 6.
    Heather said…

    I am loving using glitter glue and popsicle sticks on paper with crayon and stickers – very preschool, very fun!

  • 7.
    Christine Villacarlos said…

    oh my favorite technique these days is distressing paper edges :) tearing or curling

  • 8.
    Cindy Mandernach said…

    boy you get up early… :) congrats on you and your sisters baby news. it will be so much fun to have babies together. lately i have been making a lot of house art, you know..the stuff you decorate with.. love your samples.

  • 9.
    marilyn said…

    I love cardmaking and scrapbooking but have been wanting to take a watercolor class. Maybe that will be my fall project!

  • 10.
    Amanda Susan said…

    I’ve been doing a lot of stamping lately. Trying new things.

  • 11.
    christen said…

    i’ve been enjoying stamping a lot lately…getting my creative juices flowing :)

  • 12.
    annie bw said…

    my current favorite creative technique is playing with handlettering/calligraphy. And photography–like you, I’ve recently reconnected with taking more photos.

  • 13.
    Jo said…

    Scrapbooking is my favourite creative outlet, followed by making mini albums / books. I’m looking forward to receiving your new book through the post anyday (I live in England) – lots of ideas floating around. Can’t wait to get started on more projects.

  • 14.
    Maureen said…

    Thanks for the generous giveaway and links to books that sound really fascinating.
    Right now, I’d have to say mixed-media as I am happily in the kindergarten of ATCs and postcards combining paper and digital images. After getting my mind scrambled with the digital, it’s sometimes soothing to switch to scissors, paper and glue. I’ve been amazed at how each piece takes off in its own direction, not always where I thought it would, but where the creation wants to go.

  • 15.

    Lots of ribbons, fabric and buttons for the grand daughters. I am excited to use them since I have 4 boys. Oh and lots of tulle.

  • 16.
    Bethany Barger said…

    My favorite “technique” these days is to try to find a different way to use things. I like looking in my stash and finding some sort of embellishment and thinking to myself…how would someone use this…and then trying to find a completely different way to use it that someone esle might not have thought of. It’s challenging and fun all at the same time.

  • 17.
    Enjoli said…

    I love to stencil. I create my own images and use them for home decor and scrapbooking, and I also like to make my own journals. That’s what I’ve been into lately and I love it.
    Have a good day…

  • 18.
    Jenn Biederman said…

    I absolutely want to get the last book…Taking Flight! It sounds awesome!
    My favorite technique right now is adding stamping to my scrapbook pages…didn’t do too much of that before I started making cards this year. I am having fun with the challenges over at Hero Arts. Happy Stamping!

  • 19.
    Laura said…

    My favorite creative technique currently is organization. My desk is always such a mess (and I’m a digital scrapper, so I don’t know why it gets so messy), but I found that everything was caught up in the mess and not the process, so I am trying out a new organization system (with the help of my uber-organized husband) to put to work starting when the kids go back to school tomorrow and am feeling completely inspired. [How was that for a run-on sentence?]

  • 20.
    Jennie Gift said…

    Thanks for the give away. I have recently been inspired by all the mixed media works I have seen lately on your blog. Picked up a set of canvases yesturday and some gesso and hopefully I can get to work on them soon.

  • 21.
    Anna Ely said…

    Mixed Media is my thing. I love the melding of my photographs, paper, paint and little things collected along the way. I’m still big into digital when I am away from my art desk as I love it for it’s portability. Gotta love my laptop!!
    I love reading your blog and want to thank you for all the inspiration and wonderful links to books, blog and other things to feed my Muse!!

  • 22.
    Jenna said…

    I’m in a bit of a creative slump right now, but I’ve been using mixed media techniques and canvas to get me back in my groove…

  • 23.
    Susan said…

    Thank you for your give-away! My favorite technique is stamping. I make lots of cards and also stamp on pretty much every scrapbook page I make.

  • 24.
    Mary said…

    Incorporating word stickers when writing my journal is my favorite lately. It helps get over the fact that I am not crazy about my handwriting and it works. I also like using punches like the one from Fiskars(threading water) on my papers, and of course stamps. I am mad about stamps. I would like to be an expert someday like Tim Holtz.
    Thanks Ali!

  • 25.
    Midnight said…

    Fabric, glitter, watercolors, collecting oil painting supplies for a new class. Trying new things in my mind is my best technique.

  • 26.
    Aimee Confer said…

    Right now I love decorating the house we just moved into. It is very old and has lots of character!
    I look forward to seeing this new book!

  • 27.
    Keely said…

    I’m always looking for new inspiration so thanks for the giveway.

  • 28.
    Heather said…

    What a great giveaway. I think I may have to order that first book too. I have really been inspired by an Art Journal class I just took.. using unconventional things to glam up a page… Concentrating more on the words than actual pictures.

  • 29.
    Joan said…

    Favorite current technique: Layering…I love seeing how different textures/patterns look side by side or overlapping each other. I have also been using color combinations that I normally wouldn’t be drawn to. I am learning a lot.

  • 30.
    Ann said…

    When I do my art journal, I definitely love mixed media and layering items.

  • 31.
    Christene said…

    I was in a creative rut until I recently discovered digital. Wow, are there loads of possiblities! I am having fun learning, exploring and playing. I know that I will go back to paper (with some hybrid and digital pages thrown in) especially since I just took some new technique classes that I can’t wait to try out – and a new batch of photos just arrived.

  • 32.
    Jan Connair said…

    Well, I’m a digi chick, and my favorite technique is posterizing and upping the saturation on single-subject photos. This is an especially good trick for photos that aren’t quite in focus, but are great personality shots!

  • 33.
    mommi said…

    Hi Ali, my current favorite creative technique is ..trying ( hardly!) to use paper, especially patterned ones, in a different way.
    I ususally scrap in a very minimal way…and often using the “right paper” with “the right photo”. Now I’m trying to feel free, cutting and distressing and not to be shy in using patterned ;) .love from italy.mommi

  • 34.
    caro said…

    … been following kelly rae, ever since you put up her icon, and love that she’s a “possibilitarian”. That in itsself is inspiring.
    My creativity, lies somewhere inbetween words, the mood/colours they conjure up and then how it relates to my life/spiritual path. If that’s a technique… otherwise, a bit of fabric, stitching,canvas, tranparencies, doodling – as it all gels onto cardstock. Importantly, I allow this to be one area where instinct governs choice. FUN!

  • 35.
    Heather said…

    My newest “thing” is glimmer misting everything possible and finding all kinds of different ways to incorporate alcohol inks in my art. Took a class from Tim recently and am now completely hooked on Prima Clears, tranparencies and alcohol inks!!

  • 36.

    My favorite technique lately has been something I have always loved and it is so very simple: inking (or painting). I am finding I am inking and/or painting just about everything I touch lately. I am all about using the simplest things that give the greatest impact.

  • 37.
    care said…

    I was working with acrylic paints this weekend and not really happy with the results. I’ll have to check out that book. thanks for sharing.

  • 38.
    Krys72599 said…

    Don’t have a favorite technique but the new one I’m using most now is paint – paint on scrapbook pages, paint to make custom backgrounds and frames, paint on canvas (inspired by Donna Downey), and next week, at the all day crop I’m attending, I’ll be trying paint on photos…
    And I’ve found myself thinking long and hard about scrapping about myself, and creating a book about me… I have a formula one, but I want it to be me, created by me, about me, and like me… We’ll see what happens!

  • 39.
    Crystal said…

    My favorite technique lately is focusing on keeping it simple. Words + photos and a little stamping when inspired.

  • 40.
    naomi said…

    I love doodling around things. Shapes evoke emotion be it soft & windy or angular and modern. The color of extra fine roller ball is always important.

  • 41.

    I guess mixed media scrapbooking is my current favorite…especially with paint and resists. It seems a bit overdone for just adding to an album so I will probably frame it for the walls. Don’t have to worry about over stuffed albums that way! LOL!! Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  • 42.
    asnipofgoodness said…

    Favorite technique????Thats why I need this book! Kelly Rae Roberts rocks, and I want to try her techniques!!! really, I’m making a lot of visuals for my homeschool classical conversations class, and trying to make what most view as boring subjects, interesting. Love your blog, and congrats with the new creation inside…what a joy a new baby brings!!!

  • 43.
    naomi said…

    I love doodling around things. Shapes evoke emotion be it soft & windy or angular and modern. The color of extra fine roller ball is always important.

  • 44.
    Helena said…

    I love to sew and stitch on my layouts.
    I used to sew and do needle point or cross stitching when I had not yet been exposed to the world of scrapbooking, which then swallowed me completely to the point of having to abandon all the other crafts or other hobbies I used to have.
    Sometimes I have un URGE to use my sewing machine and I have been using it on my layouts a lot. Lately I’ve been also stitching on my projects. It’s relaxing :)

  • 45.
    carolyn said…

    I have been using gel medium to “glue” with fabric and then paint or ink. For many different looks.

  • 46.
    minna said…

    Just give me some cardstock and inks and an old mag to cut off and I’ll be entertained for hours. I love scrapping but making ATCs is soo much fun, too!

  • 47.
    Kathryn marks said…

    I can’t believe you are giving this book away – I have just written it on my list of books to buy!! And I do mean just!! Immediately before reading your blog! too amazing. I am a scrapbooker but am keen to try some mixed media things – Donna Downey’s newspaper stuck together book is first on my list of things to try.
    Kathryn from Australia

  • 48.
    Susan W said…

    I am in a bit of a rut lately. I am hoping that your book will be arriving any day to my house … anxiously waiting the arrival of it. And I am hoping that will get some of creative juices flowing again.

  • 49.
    Melissa said…

    Hi, Ali… I was coming here to leave a comment (really a question) anyway, so it’s a PLUS to have a chance to win this awesome book too!!
    I preordered your “Recording Life’s Details” mini album book several months ago and I see that it is shipping, but I’m wondering if you could provide some sneak peeks of the book please? There are only a couple of pages on the CK site and I am anxious to see more… which means that I will be stalking the mailman a bit more than usual. (ha!)
    Thanks so much,

  • 50.
    susan said…

    Scrapbooking and other papercrafts
    Although I am trying to expand my projects to include some paint and stitching. Now that school is starting I hope to have a bit more “play” time.