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Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Memento Mori




Hello all, an unexpected post today... well, unexpected for me at least.  I really didn't expect to fit in the Tim Holtz May tag, so this is a bonus!

I knew I'd be making it at some point as it's an absolutely beautiful piece of inspiration from Lord Holtz, but I thought that'd be somewhere down the road a way.

Quite apart from the time available, I've been feeling pretty Mojo-less.  That's not quite fair... my Mojo's been busy with the dollshouses, but that doesn't seem to leave much over.  

So it was a real pleasure to just sit down and let someone else do the thinking.  And oh boy, did I have fun playing with all that metal?!

So it's an even bigger thank you than usual to Tim, for giving me a couple of happy hours at my craft table, when that's been a rare commodity lately.










You'll notice one major change from Tim's tag (apart from not having the ShadowPress folders - yet).

As you'll see further on, I simply couldn't get an inky background that I was happy with so, since we were playing with the paper sizes, I decided to let some 12x12 in on the act too as my background.











With various things that are going on, I found myself reaching for objects to do with Time and with the things that are precious to me in my life - things I want to make sure play a big part as those seconds tick away.  How will you spend your time in this life?








It started to become a bit of a Memento Mori, a reminder of death - but in a positive way!  A reminder to make sure the things that matter to you are included in life on a daily basis.

So music and words are here, for starters in the background papers on the panels.  In a cliched kind of way, this key was perfect... these things are the key to a happy life for me - words, music, learning, and of course the crafty creativity.









I had the Rabindranath Tagore quote running through my head while I was making the tag: the butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough - another prompt to live in the moment and make the most of it.

So there are butterflies too... delicate filigree creatures, balanced on the edge of time.




This one is perched on some old watch parts - internal workings and an old pocket watch back, along with some other bits and bobs, including a lucky number 7.













The pen nib reminds us of the possibility of leaving something to endure - whether that's memoirs, music, art, writing, children, good works, happy memories - to leave you able to smile in the face of death.









The butterfly shape is echoed again in the lock I chose ready for opening with that key.  

In fact, I noticed as I took the photos, that I seem to have chosen harmonious shapes - circles, ovals and butterfly shapes in the main... it wasn't conscious!









There's another genuine clock part connected to the Lifetime Muse Token - this watch face has a lovely shine in the sunlight.

(Oh, yes, sunshine - another key ingredient in the happiness recipe - I'd've liked a snidge more of it for the photos really).









And no, I haven't got any of the lovely ShadowPress folders yet - the set I think I'll make most use of doesn't come out until later in the year, so I'm holding off (there seem to be a few dregs of willpower remaining) until then.

So instead I used my favourite dimensional lettering, the Alpha Parts, and added an iced topping of Distress Paint in Picket Fence and Pumice Stone.










Another lucky number 7 to ward off the evil eye...












Oh, and the tiny little clock brad (Prima, I think?) was a happy find at the bottom of one of my travelling shoe boxes of stash.  Perfect for the theme which had developed.













And the linen ribbon to top it all off, fastened with a metal panel to echo the larger ones on the tag.













I'll just quickly share a couple of the dismissed backgrounds... feel free to skip all the failures! 

I think part of the problem was I rested the panels on some white mountboard while I was inking, and I became rather attached to that look - so nothing else quite worked for me.

















I tried some dark metallics (with Perfect Pearls Mists and Distress Stains) thinking it would pick up the metallic elements on the panels quite nicely.  No go.


















Next go was a paler look - closer, but still no banana...




















... even once I'd added another layer of splatter and inked the edges - nope.











So that's when I gave in - I really did try, honest guv! - but there was definitely too much over-thinking going on.  Having hauled all these beautiful things out of my stash, there was no way I was putting them on a background I was only half happy with.  

For a while, it looked like the plain white would be the winner, but then I thought about what Tim said in his post about the different pattern sizes within the pads, and I grabbed the large 12x12 music sheet.  And that was the one for me.


In the end, the whole thing was so heavy, I had to put it on another piece of mountboard to stop it flopping everywhere.  That solidity gives it a really lovely weight and presence - and the whole thing makes me very happy!




Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony.
Mahatma Gandhi

Whoever uses the spirit that is in him creatively is an artist.  To make living itself an art, that is the goal.
Henry Miller

I'd like to enter this as my May tag in Tim Holtz's 12 Tags of 2014.
At the Craft-Room Challenge the lovely Annie would like to see Things With Wings - will butterflies from butterfly do?!
At Craft Hoarders Anonymous the challenge is to Show Some Metal or Glass.
At Creative Inspirations the challenge is Tag It.
At Tag Along the theme is Tick Tock.  With all those watch parts and the theme of what to do with the time you have, this should fit right in.



82 comments:

Rita said...

What a fabulous tag Alison, and a wonderful story to match everything on the tag. I love your take on the TH tag and the fact it has lots of special memories that are personal to you. Thanks for sharing. Hugs Rita xxx

barbarayaya62 said...

As always an inspirational work! It has been very difficult for me this tag ! Your tag is totaly wonderful, i love all metal elements!!! Gandhi's quote is absolutely true! BArbarayaya

maria's knutselplezier said...

Wow , super, what a beautiful design , great details !!

Greetings
Maria

Marci said...

What a nice surprise! I like your tag, and I see what you mean about the base tag. The one you used is just right. Wonderful!

Juliz Design Post said...

Beautiful tag Alison. I love how everyones Tag is coming out unique to them with the similarity of Tim's.
Julie x

Dagmar said...

What a fantastic tag !!!! I love it and the background ist just right. So many details- great work! Hugs Dagmar

chrissies said...

Terrific tag with lots of wonderful things added to it. Looks like your mojo is still in working order :)

Love Chrissie x

sally said...

This is beautiful Alison & the memento mori really struck a chord for me as my mum sadly passed away yesterday morning, so much on here remind me of her.

Bittersweet beauty for me then....

Sally

Asia King (aka Joanna K) said...

I love how your tag turned out. The subtle background really helped tie in all the little pieces and all the elements are just fab!!! Greetings from Poland! xxx

Neet said...

Fabulous tag Alison and what a lot of thought provoking words - true to your blog name this post.
Thanks and Hugs, Neet xx

Anneke said...

You can be proud of Yourself because this so pretty. I love the details. Just love all of it together. It has taken quite a bit of time but see the wonderful results. Love Anneke.

craftytrog said...

So glad you found time Alison, your tag is glorious! xxx

Deborah said...

A very clever take on the tim tag, Alison. And so beautiful. I agree, the patterned papers were the right way to go.

Chris Warner said...

Wow, what a stunner! So different to what I've seen so far, this really stands out. A fab tag Alison, good luck!! [s] Chris xxx

ElizabethR said...

Love the thoughts you have with this tag, it's fab! Elizabeth x

Artfully challenged said...

This is stunning Alison, I found it a hard tag to do....mainly parting with bits of stash made it harder! It's gorgeous,i love the colour you have used,blends in beautifully.

Donna.x

Buttons said...

You're right - the ephemera collection looks perfect on that music score background Alison. I love the almost monochromatic look to this and elegance of the matching metals. Another winner I think... Jenny x

JansArtyJunk said...

It's fabulous Alison.... I love the colour, background, the butterflies and all your wonderful trinkets! Gorgeous take on the May tag... love it ...Jan x

rachel said...

this is stunning alison and so very personal. its a real joy to listen to your thought process. the butterflies on the time pieces are particularly poetic. fabulous x

Kathy/NorthCarolina said...

What a beautiful tag! I liked tim's design this month, too...and I really like your take on it. All those wonderful metal bits combine to make a meaningful theme! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous Challenge #8: Metal or Glass!

massofhair said...

Meaningful Tag, lots to contemplate. Liking your finished piece a lot:-) x

Redanne said...

Love your wonderful take on Tim's tag Alison and I love the Rabindranath Tagore quote as well! Anne xx

Kay Wallace said...

Absolutely L-O-V-E your "heavy metal" tag, Alison! Totally brilliant!

Christy Butters said...

Totally love this! What a great use of all those metal bits and pieces.
Thanks for sharing with us at Craft Hoarders Anon :)

Alie Hoogenboezem-de Vries said...

A great way to show all the metal pieces Alison...in total a great and inspirational tag!
Also thanks again for your sweet comments on my blog :-)
Have a nice day, Alie

Alie Hoogenboezem-de Vries said...

A great way to show all the metal pieces Alison...in total a great and inspirational tag!
Also thanks again for your sweet comments on my blog :-)
Have a nice day, Alie

cathylynn said...

Your tag is priceless. Love the combination of shapes and metas that you used. Thanks for sharing your various backgrounds and your final choice was best. I'm sure we'll be seeing the other backgrounds soon.
Now I must see what Tim did.
Hugs, Cathy-Lynn

Hettie said...

Wow! This is one awesome tag! I know the A word is used a lot, but I don't use it very often...until today.
Love what you have created. I bet it weighs a bit too!
Hugs
xx

Julie Ann Lee said...

Fabulous tag, Alison. I adore the butterflies. How lovely that Tim H was able to provide just the stimulus you needed! Lovely to see this and read about how it was created too. Julie Ann xxx

Lisa M said...

Okay, truce! I agree...I'll let you crawl around in my brain and I'll crawl around in yours.
From beginning to end of your post, it read like a calm winding stream filled with beauty and purpose. Without a doubt you've created an eye candy for living and living well.
I just love it!
Lisa x

Dorthe said...

I love the story ,telling about your choices and the meaning behind,-
what a special tag, wonderful in almost no colour and metal Alison.
Hugs from Dorthe

S@ndy Diller said...

This tag is just stunning. I love the way you have layered the metal pieces and the entire layout is so pleasing to the eye.

Pammejo said...

Stunning Tag and I think you hit the nail on the head sort of speaking on the challenge of metal and glass. Beautifully done...glad you are sharing with us on the Craft Hoarders Anonymous Challenge Blog

Carol Q said...

what a lovely combination of paper and "metal" Alison. I also love the orderliness of your tag.

lynnesbowsandbelles said...

Transfixed by your tag.
I simply love the concept behind this tag and also the repetition of the stunning butterflies and I like the stone colour palette.
A thing of beauty.
Wishes
Lynne

Zoe Sanderson said...

Well that was quite a journey and very TH. Those butterflies are beautiful while all the other elements work so very well the placement is wonderful. Thank you for bringing your fabulous tag to us at Craft-Room Challenge XOXO Zoe

Silvia(Barnie) said...

That's amazing, a fantastic tag with great metal elements. Gorgeous look.

Stempeln und mehr - Evelyns bunte Welt said...

Great tag dear Alison! Ilove all those metal elements and the "scrubbed and polished" look.
xxx Evelyn

Paper Profusion said...

Idea-ology never looked so good - I love all the metal Alison. Nicola x

Lys Scrap said...

It's almost as interesting to read you than to admire your tag, Alison! Il love the metallic theme and the harmony you put in it. And I understand more now you show it the importance of the background I missed to pay attention for mine!

isisimaginings.com said...

Completely stunning & utterly gorgeous! I still haven't made mine, must get a move on.

Almo said...

Stunning Alison, I enjoyed reading your post today as much as looking at all the carefully chosen elements on your tag. Interesting to see your rejected backgrounds, you are spot on with the final choice of the music papers. Mo x

Astrid Maclean said...

Absolutely brilliant Alison, love how you just used those pale colours, it makes for a fabulous backdrop to all those metal pieces. I think your mojo is well and truly come back to you!

Coco said...

You're right to be very happy with the end result!!! What a wonderful tag, rich in various elements that all combine very beautifully and even perfectly with the last background you have chosen! A great post with all your (bad) trials, very funny but also very interesting.. TFS. Have a great (possibly long) week-end Alison, Hugs Coco xxx
PS: I'm not worried about your mojo... :D

Annie said...

Your tag is stunning Alison and I am glad you found some time for you.
I enjoyed following your creativity and thought and so relate to it.

I think you should mount it on a beautiful piece of driftwood as it would be a beautiful piece of home decor

Huge hugs
Annie x

Helen said...

I love your version of Tim's tag!! Hope the mojo comes back soon - in the meantime thanks for catching up with my many posts over the last few days, it's much appreciated!!

Netty said...

So much thought has gone into the making of your fabulous tag Alison. Another masterpiece, hugs Annette x

Gio said...

Wow, Alison! Despite your mojo, this is truly an outstanding piece. So elegant, and perfect in every details. Very different from the original, still so eye-catching!

Samantha said...

Awesome Tag I love everything about it and love the style,
hugs me x

Chrissy said...

Fabulous, beautifully metal filled tag Alison.I can see the weight of it and it must feel wonderful..Love it.

luv CHRISSYxx

Unni A said...

Faboulus tag! I love all the wonderful metal elements, it's beautiful! And I'm sure it must be very heavy !? :)
hugs, Unni

Jan Marie said...

Thoughtful work of art. . .love the explanations of each piece to provide the artist's true take rather than my own interpretation! Lovely layout! Thanks so much for sharing your style with us at Craft Hoarders' Anonymous!

Donna Idlet said...

Beautiful tag! So happy you found time to make this. Love all the details. Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

Rosie Schirrmeister said...

Boah, this is gorgeous, Alison.

Sue said...

It's a beautiful tag Alison, full of perfect little details and touches, and the background is just right! xx

Karen Garrard said...

Alison....what a gorgeous tag! This is a real winner. Karen,x

Tincan Crafter said...

I barely made it in there myself!!! I love that you called him Lord Holtz - I often find myself wanting to worship at his feet....more like his creative hands and visionary eye, but I will go with feet for now. You really did something beautiful over here. I love those filigree butterflies, I think that both the white mounting board and the eventual background are lovely. I like the metal clampy thing you used to fasten the linen ribbon. I am always in awe of how you put things together Alison - your style not only appeals to me, it reaches out grabs me into it.

Sandy said...

This tag is perfect -- I don't know what else to call it. I have examined it quite throughly and every little detail is wonderful. You have combined so many elements perfectly - with great harmony. I feel like I am a judge on dancing with the stars -- honestly Alison - I love this. What a good eye you have a great stash!!
Sandy xx

Shari Trumbull said...

Fabulous, Alison!! Your tag is harmonious! Your final choice of using the sheet music paper is perfect! All of your embellishments just pop off of your tag and really give our eyes so many fun things to look at and ponder! And those beautiful filigree butterflies--Just lovely! Just a wonderful tag, Alison! XOXO-Shari

Nan G said...

Love the monochromatic tone of your tag! The cream words and music paper was the way to go, definitely. Of all the May TH tags I've seen...I like yours the best! Hugs

Lisa S. said...

You have put so much thought into this tag Alison and I love it. It's fabulous! Sorry I've been scarce too, vacation time. :) I'll do a proper catch up this weekend. xx

toni said...

Hi Alison , thank you for your lovely comments on my tag, I was very happy that Tim had pinned it and in such good company as well!!! Yours leapt out at me straight away, wonderfully cool and calm colour range and so many lovely embellishments. It was very interesting to read all the special meanings behind each of your tiles. My lucky number for this year as you may have noticed is 60 as I celebrated that huge birthday last month. Your thoughts on time really speak to me !! Hope all is good with you love Toni xx

Gloria Stengel said...

Hands down, my favorite of our challenge so far! I love all the layering of the metal bits! Stunning! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

hazel said...

A fantastic tag Alison, thank you for sharing it with us at Craft-Room challenge.
Xxx Hazel.

Terry said...

Wonderful May tag creations, Alison! I just love those butterfly tiles, so cool! Hugs!

Dianne said...

Hello Miss Alison, what a wonderful post dismissals and all they will be used for other projects, well this is the BEST Tim's tag even better than the masters I think, its a glorious metal work of art, the back you used is perfect, I would love to touch it :), thanks for sharing your take on the tag. It's great you got some time to just play...

glendabrooks.blogspot.com said...

Your tag is just awesome. All along the steps I just kept looking at the finished piece and then back at what you were doing and all those metal pieces are so eye catching and I agree, I like the music paper too! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

Annie said...

Here with my CRC hat on. This is such a gorgeous tag Alison and I adore all the elements. Thank you for playing at Craft Room Challenge this fortnight.

Hugs Annie x

lost coast scrapper said...

Amazing!! Thanks for joining us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous!

Marcie Rhys said...

Lord Holtz will be asking you to run his kingdom after seeing this masterpiece! What a huge amount of work you have put into this tag AND this post.

Your composition is truly masterful, and I'm so happy you shared your efforts at a background that you ended up not using. Some times we of lesser artistic persuasions, think the very talented artists just nail everything coming right out of the gate. (I never thought about this before, but it is not knowing exactly what journey we will take, that makes the process so rewarding.)

This really is a beautiful. Thanks so much for taking the time to share your work and thoughts so eloquently.

Kate said...

A stunner! I love all that metal...

Debi said...

gorgeous- and even with all the metal and the skull somehow still really feminine!! thanks for sharing with us at Craft Room Challenge, Debi x

Kasia said...

What an amazing details! Wonderful tag!

Amber Milone said...

Simply gorgeous! I love all the different metal elements you used and the butterflies are beautiful. Thanks for joining us at the Craft Room.

chanya13 said...

Wow!!!! Fantastic tag, love all embelisments and wonderful colour combo. Thanks for joining us at Wednesday's Creative Inspirations. I hope you get to join us again for our next sketch. Agnieszka

Jools Robertson said...

Wow! Metal magic!! Just loving those fab muted colours and the embellishments are stunning especially the butterflies and placement

Jools x

pollyspaper said...

Great take on the Metal of Glass Challenge. Thanks for playing along with us at Craft Hoarders Anonymous Challenge Blog. Hugs from Ginny at Polly's Paper : )

Kathy/NorthCarolina said...

Congrats on being chosen as a favorite in Craft Hoarders Anonymous Challenge #8! Your project is just beautiful!

rkramadh said...

So well coordinated and cohesive, beautiful tag indeed.

Kezzy said...

Wow fantastic tag based on Mr Holtz tag. I have to admit, sometimes plain and straight is just what is needed. I have really noticed that lately. Sometimes I try and try and try to get a background right for my image and sometimes feel disappointed that the white or plainer paper better. But it must be right as in the end those are the ones I love while the ones I ended up forcing still don't look happy lol. I remember reading somewhere that if a piece of work catches your eye then it's because the artist understands the theory and the end result is pleasing to the eye. I really seem to see that at the moment with my work and others as I try to understand the process and yep looking at the inky backgrounds you did I agree

Kezzy said...

Oops the comment posted which I didnt mean it to lol. Anyway you get the gist of my waffling lol. I really love all the reasons for each oiece you added. Kezzy:-) xxx

Marjie Kemper said...

Alison, this is one exquisite tag... I adore it!