Thursday, May 28, 2015

Patriotic US Postal Stamps

If you're looking for patriotic stamps to use for U. S. postage, then you have found them. This selection features artistic designs by artist, Cheryl Paton, a.k.a. CherylsArt.

I think you'll enjoy the artistic flair.

This first design features stars and stripes gone floral. The flower petals are made of red and white stripes, with a yellow star pattern in the center. The flower is surrounded by blue and white striped leaves. The text reads, Happy 4th of July, which can also be easily customized, on the template form, with your own greeting.


This next design gives the stars and stripes a new look. The red and white stripes are in the background, and white stars outlined in blue, form a star pattern on the striped background.


Another new take on the stars and stripes flag is the 50 stars arranged into a peace sign on the red and white background.


If you like fireworks and the traditional flag, then you'll probably like the U. S. flag done in pointillism, with a spray of fireworks in front of it.


If you'd like to see a larger selection, you can view them here:


Zazzle is a print on demand company, and their published stamps meet the U. S. Postal Service guidelines. They are legal to use on mail within the United States.

Thank you for your patronage, and may you have a wonderful celebration.

Cheryl Paton

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Color in Kids t-shirts Activity

Does your child like to color? Do they like to display their works of art? Do they like wearing their art? If you have answered yes to any of these questions, then your child or children will also probably enjoy coloring in pre-printed designs on tee shirts.


On these shirts, the designs are basic, allowing the child to more easily ad-lib with some of their own creativity. Perhaps they want to add polka dots or stripes to their creation. Maybe they would like to add in background features, or their own toppings to the pizza shirt.


I used to host birthday parties at a local craft store, and I was rather amazed and impressed with the children's creativity when they were just given basic designs to work with.


No two beginning designs ever looked alike once the children were finished with their creations.

Click on the link below to see a broader selection of available designs.


If you have a request for an outline drawing for kids, you can let me know by sending me an email to creative-brushstrokes@comcast.net.

If you are wondering about what type of paint to use, I recommend using fabric paint markers. They are relatively easy to use and are usually less messy than painting with brushes.

A tip is to pre-wash the shirts first, without the use of any fabric softener, to help the paint adhere better. Also follow any manufacturer's instructions for setting the color.

I have used the fabric paint markers by Elmer's before, and have had good experiences with them. Just be sure to recap the marker when shaking the paint up, and to pre-test on a rag or paper to get used to the amount of pressure to apply, first.



Whichever method you use, be sure to lay flat cardboard under the layer that is being painted on to protect whatever is under it, from any paint bleed through.

May you have a fun experience with your children and their painting project.

Any questions can be submitted below in the comment section.

Cheryl Paton
CherylsArt









Monday, May 25, 2015

Grosgrain Personalized Graduation Keychains

Keychains are a nice gift for the graduate, especially if it leads to a car. However, it's nice to have an updated keychain anyway, and especially one that commemorates a special occasion.

This style features a cap and tassel with a placeholder for your added text, which can also include the year of graduation. The design and text are printed on both sides, so be sure to update both sides for any customization that you do.

I like this style because they are flexible.


The strips of colors down the side edges come in a choice of 12 color options, which includes red, pink, yellow, green, purple, blue, and more.

The cap and tassel color combinations come in a choice of five.


If you have any other color combination requests, you can email me at creative-brushstrokes@comcast.net.

Many happy congrats to you and your grad.

Cheryl Paton
CherylsArt at Zazzle




Friday, May 22, 2015

Baby Shower Postage Stamps

It's wonderful that you are participating in having a baby shower for your friend. Pat yourself on the back.

Here you will find a cute selection of postage stamps designed just for this occasion. You'll find traditional colors, and alternative colors and designs too.

This picture link will take you to the page of the individual designs that are ready for purchase.


These have been designed by CherylsArt at Zazzle.

You can browse more baby stamps by CherylsArt at her Zazzle store.

Cheryl Paton
CherylsArt

Thursday, May 21, 2015

I painted my first pet rock, and tips

I've painted animals before; those were done on canvases. This is the first animal that I've painted on a dimensional object.

I had purchased some rocks at the craft store because I wanted to give this type of painting a go. I thought I might paint some cats.

However, a friend of mind is hosting a Zazzle party for me, and I decided to give her a hostess gift. So then it dawned on me to paint a pet rock for her. So I called her up and asked her what her favorite animal is and she replied dogs.

Her favorite dogs are beagles and collies. So I browsed some images of beagles online and looked at my rocks, and decided yep, beagle it is.


This particular beagle was not painted to look like anyone's pet; it is actually a conglomeration of different characteristics that I saw on the beagles that came up in my search results.

It is kind of neat painting a portrait or the like on a dimensional object. I like that it has some size to it.

A week or so before the beagle painting, I tried my hand at painting lady bugs on small rocks.


Lady bugs are a nice place to start, as they are pretty straight forward to paint.

Once I painted the dog, I was glad to handle something bigger. I also liked looking through the rocks and finding a good fit for the animal, and then determining how I wanted the dog to lay. It adds a new dimension to my painting.

Whether the subject is large or small, the basic techniques are the same.

1. Draw your main image on the rock. I used a watercolor pencil, some people like using markers.

2. Paint in your base coats, and usually a second coat on top of the base coat.

3. Then do your adding. If it's basic, add some highlights and/or shading.
For the lady bugs, I highlighted the wings before adding the dots. I dabbed a lighter shade on their wings around halfway down their back, with a small round spongeround sponge set.

For the dog, I added some highlights and shading before adding the fur strokes. I used side by side shades directly on a rounded brush to get a blending for the fur. Then I used the same technique on the rake brushrake brush to get more of a fur look.

Once the painting was dry, I also add two coats of varnish, waiting for it dry in between. A couple of coats is probably fine, unless it might get lots of use, or be outdoors, then you might want to add more.

If you'd like to read more about blending techniques for acrylic paints, you can check out my article - Blending Acrylic Paint on Canvas.

Have you painted any pet rocks yet? Will you be painting any?

What do you think of my first ventures with painting pet rocks?

Cheryl Paton
CherylsArt at Zazzle

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Custom Happy Birthday Stickers

Those little stickers just seem to brighten up the packages, envelopes, and or cards. They add that little touch that makes the gift and/or sentiment even more special. I know that my daughter appreciates receiving those little additions, as do I.

This is a link to various designs of happy birthday stickers that I have designed; each of which can also be customized with your own personal text.


There are a variety of styles for a variety of tastes and ages, from kids to adults.

May you and your birthday person(s) enjoy this extra touch.

Thank you.

Browse more birthday supplies by CherylsArt at Zazzle.com.

Cheryl Paton
CherylsArt at Zazzle


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Beach Scene Wall Clocks


This beach scene is from a painting that I did of a sandy beach with gentle ocean waves, and a blue sky. You can choose from a variety of options here for your wall clock choice.

This first version features light colored numbers on a square clock. It comes in a choice of three sizes: 10 by 10 inches, 13 by 13 inches, and 15 by 15 inches.

It has a shiny finish and is made of scratch resistant aluminum, making it lightweight. It is purchased from Amazon and requires a single AA battery.



This next option features larger numbers that are black. It comes in a choice of round and square. The round version comes in a choice of two sizes: 8" diameter (medium) or 10.75" diameter (large.) The square version is 10.75 inches. These clocks require one AA battery which is not included. These are purchased from Zazzle and are printed with an AcryliPrint®HD process.

Sand Ocean Sky Waves Beach Wall Clock
Sand Ocean Sky Waves Beach Wall Clock by CherylsArt

With this one you can have the option of easily customizing the message, and it also pictures a fun pair of sunglasses laying in the sand.



Browse more Beach Wall Clocks at Zazzle.

Cheryl Paton

50th Anniversary Stamps

The fiftieth anniversary is also known as the golden anniversary. Gold is both the traditional and modern gift to celebrate this milestone.


If you are looking for postage stamps for invitations to help this wonderful couple celebrate, then you've come to the right place.

This first selection features a border of lively gold stars for the stars of this marriage. It is easily personalized with the couple's first names.


This next design features a unique gold And Sign that has a red heart as part of its' base. It can also be personalized with the couple's names.


Both of these designs are shown with a white background.

If the loving couple doesn't mind having their photo shared on postage stamps, then this black add photo frame can be a fun choice. The couples names are written in gold at the top of the photo, and 50th Anniversary is written at the bottom.


If you would like a simple design without any names, then our gold on gold text design can work for you.


These designs are both simple and unique, and also an elegant choice for your invitations.

See other 50th Anniversary Stamps

Cheryl Paton

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Koi Fish Designs on Shirts Puzzles and More


Koi fish are so interesting looking. I was inspired by some of them at a park that I had visited to make these designs here.

The ones that I saw were either a mix of orange and white or orange and black. The background of their swimming area was shades of green.

I decided to group them together as if they were having a meeting; like a "school" of fish.

Here they are pictured on a puzzle. You can choose from an 8 by 10 or 11 by 14 inch size.


I decided to have some fun and made a photo of the taped in design, showing them in blue. I taped in the fish before I painted the background and they turned out pretty cool. Here they are printed on tee shirts.


Before they were all taped in, they started out as outline drawings. Here they are printed on tee shirts; you can wear them plain or have fun painting them in. If you paint them in, I recommend acrylic paint markers, and to place a smooth sheet of cardboard between the layers before painting.


Which is your favorite version of the koi fish design?

You can see them on more products in my CherylsArt store at Zazzle. If you would like any of these designs pictured on other products available at Zazzle, just let me know in an email to creative-brushstrokes@comcast.net or through my Zazzle store.

Thank you for your visit.

Cheryl Paton





Monday, May 11, 2015

Flower Coffee Mugs for Mom

Whether it's Mother's Day or any other day that you'd like to make special for your mom, flower mugs are a good choice. The mug will be a pretty, daily reminder of your love for your mom, and they can be filled with flowers, treats, or coffee.

Here you will find a hand picked selection from Amazon, and also a pretty selection that you can also customize if you like.

This flower mug from Amazon also features hearts, and says, "Mom, thanks for all that you do." Moms like to be thanked and appreciated. She will be pleased to appreciate your thoughtfulness.



This mug features decorative flowers and simply says, Mom. If your mom is one that likes a few extra sips, then she'll enjoy the capacity of 14 ounces in this travel option.



This "World's best mom," mug can be ordered on the plain white background, and/or it can also be purchased on the transforming mug, revealing the design and message as the beverage goes down.



The following mugs are from Zazzle, and they can be customized with your own text. You can also choose a different style mug and any color accents that are available.

This first one features colorful outlines of a bunch of flowers with the message, "Mom, I love you bunches."


This flower mug features an outline of a yellow coreopsis printed on both sides, with the message, I love you mom, printed between them.


This one is for moms who love white flowers. It features a bright painting of a variety of white flowers on a blended green background. The text can be personalized on the template form.



May your mom enjoy your lovely gift. Bless you and thanks for stopping by.

Cheryl Paton

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Sparrow in Cherry Blossom Tree Plein-Air

I finally took the plunge and did a plain air drawing. I wanted to keep things simple so I opted for colored pencils and drawing paper. Perhaps some other time, I might try plein-air with paints.

I decided to go down town by the waterfront. I had planned on painting a duck or two; I've seen them down by the waterfront before. But that day, they weren't around.

While I ate my lunch on the deck of of the restaurant, I perused the sights to see what might be a good subject. There were people bicycling on the rail trail, and I gave that some thought. I cataloged general shapes of such in my mind.

The other thing that caught my attention was the sparrows flitting about. Some even came pretty close; one even perched on the railing near where I sat. I scanned his body and tried to keep the details in my mind. In a minute he flew away.

Ah, such is the venue when your subject has wings, Anyway, the sparrow won, and I commenced to drawing as much as I could from memory. I got the main part of his body done and some of the noticeable markings on the feathers. I knew I could do a computer search when I got home, or even hopefully have some of the sparrows that frequent my backyard to fill in as models.

As I continued to glance around I also noticed cherry blossom trees near by. Ah, that would be a nice compliment to help frame my feathered friend.

So this is what I came up with.

The first drawing is shown with a white background.


On this one, I added some blue sky with my computer air brush software. It gives it a kind of abstract sky affect.


Check here for matching address labels and here for postage stamps.

Cheryl Paton


Monday, May 4, 2015

Fun and Creative Painting Kits for Kids

It's fun for kids to get their creative juices flowing with paints. Even if a kit is paint by number, kids can still add their own creativity to it, by adding some highlights and/or shading; or even a new element in the painting.

Here you will find painting kits geared towards a variety of age groups for kids, and even for the kid in adults.

Kids can create a Van Gogh inspired sunflower painting with this kit. It includes acrylic paints, oil pastel crayons, stencils, a specially designed Van Gogh roller, two sheets of paper (16 by 20 inches), and a re-usable box with magnetic closures.



This kit is especially great because you can use the stencils and rollers again and again. Just purchase extra paper, canvas panels, etc. Reviewers have mentioned kids ages 4 through 10 have enjoyed doing this kit.

The stencil can either be taped in place to let the kids paint while the stencil is held down, or the stencil can be used for tracing, and then painting the design in after the stencil is removed. A tip is to use low tack painters tape to hold the stencil in place.

Some of the families that enjoyed the sunflowers kit also liked the Starry Night Painting Kit. One customer mentioned that there was enough paint in this kit to do three paintings, but you will need to purchase extra paper if you want to paint three.

If you child likes to hold an object and/or likes trains, then they would probably enjoy this 3d paint kit. Some reviewers have said that 2-3 year olds were able to paint the train, but will need supervision. The paint is acrylic, so keep in mind that the paint will also be permanent on clothing, etc.



Also let them know that an adult probably painted the train shown in the picture, and that theirs' will probably look different when finished.

If your child would like to have their art displayed to the world, or well the neighborhood, then they might enjoy this window painting kit. It does take some extra instruction and also probably some supervision, but it can be pretty and also sparkly. The nice thing about this is that you can also use sheet protectors to paint on and then move them around.



This window painting kit includes eight colors of glitter paints and two containers of outline paints. Note that the thicker that the paint is applied, the longer it will take to dry. It is recommended for ages 6 to 96.

Is the kid in you ready to paint a wall? This kit comes with stencils to add your own farm animals to the wall. You can either tape the stencils in place and paint through the stencil, or trace the stencil outlines using watercolor pencils, and then painting them in after the stencil is removed.



A tip is to save some extra wall paint, i.e. the sky and grass color, to do any touch ups once the painted animals and barn has dried. This can be a fun idea for painting a nursery or a young child's bedroom.

I hope you have liked my painting suggestions. If you'd like to browse some more, please visit painting kits for kids at Amazon.

Cheryl Paton
fellow artist

Friday, May 1, 2015

Pin Stripes Bath Mat and Bath Set

Looking for a colorful accent for your bathroom? Check out this pin striped design on bath mats, and matching toothbrush holder and soap dispenser.

The stripes are red, pink, yellow, green, and blue, with bits of white peaking through.

The bath mat comes in a choice of three sizes, including, 16 by 24 inches, 20 by 30 inches, and 24 by 36 inches.

The bath mat is made of memory foam and has a quick drying foam core. It also has a non skid backing and is machine washable. The mat is made for use outside of the tub.


The additional color on the bath set is white. The toothbrush holder can hold up to four toothbrushes. The top of the soap dispenser is made with stainless steel. The same design is printed on each piece, and is ordered as a set.


There are lots of designs in my Zazzle store, CherylsArt. If you would like any of my current designs added to the bath mat and/or bath set, you can contact me through my Zazzle store, leave a comment in the comment section below, or email me at creative-brushstrokes@comcast.net, and I'll be glad to design it for you.

Cheryl Paton