finding inspiration

Hiya friends!
I’m back with you today, just like I promised, to share with you some fun ways for finding inspiration in your paper crafting. These ideas may or may not be new to you, but hopefully I can share something that will spur you into finding new inspiration for yourself.
If you’re at all like me sometimes you come up against a wall, a mental road block, when the creativity just isn’t there. At times like that I find that, no matter how hard I try, often what I create in times of creative dry spells just doesn’t please me very much. When the creativity is flowing freely I can usually make things that I really love more often. Plus it usually takes me less time to make something when I’m feeling creative rather than spend time trying to make it work when it just isn’t.
Everyone is different when it comes to creativity and how we push through those time when the creative juices just aren’t flowing. We all need to find what works best for us.

Today I’m sharing one of my favorite places to find inspiration. And that is magazines. One of my very favorite things to do is to grab a magazine and page through it and jot down whatever stands out to me in one way or another.

The best thing about this kind of inspiration is that most of the creative design work is already done for you. The magazine’s graphic designers have already picked out eye catching color combos and great design layouts. It’s their job to make things look as appealing to the reader’s eye as possible, so why not take advantage of that?
Another reason I love to use magazines is that you can get them for free. You don’t have to subscribe to lots of magazines to use them for your paper crafting inspiration. When I take my kids to the library I often pick out a few magazines to check out and take home with me.
I also love to visit bookstores like Barnes & Noble. I grab a few magazines and my notepad and just write down things I see that inspire me. In fact, I have started to always keep a small notepad in my purse for just this purpose. It can be paper crafting magazines or not. I’ve found inspiration in magazines as boring as my husband’s Fortune and Men’s Journal magazines before.

This blog post came about because of a card I made recently for a sketch challenge. The inspiration came form a magazine cover. My favorite magazine ever to use for finding paper crafting inspiration is Martha Stewart Living. Love it! Those MS people really know how to deliver stunning color combinations and all around great designs. Every single time! This is one of those magazines that I usually pick up from my local library.
The one that I’m pointing to today is actually a publication from June 2009. The fact that it’s a year old doesn’t matter to me in the least. I still found tons of inspiration, as you’ll see in a bit.

Here is a shot of cover of the magazine I’m using today.

Isn’t is gorgeous? In fact, the cover is the only thing we’re going to be talking about today.
First, let’s talk about the colors. The colors on this cover where the first thing that caught my eye. The bright oranges paired with fresh greens and white made me want to walk into that room and lounge on the comfy sofa surrounded by the cushy pillows and just relax for a while. I can imagine I’d hear the ocean waves in the distance and feel the salty beach breezes waft through the open windows.
I knew I had to create something using these colors and this card that I shared on Monday was the result.

But I didn’t want to stop there. As I sat and looked at the cover of the magazine I realized that there were many other points of inspiration to be utilized here.

I sat down and sketched out a few things that I thought I could use to make a card. Let’s take a look.

How about the table and floor?

When I sketched it out it looked like this.

And the card I made from this sketch looks like this.

As you can see I ended up rotating the sketch to go vertically instead of horizontally on the card. That’s just one way to increase the versatility of your card sketches. I also stuck with the color scheme of the room for this card.

Do you like it? want to see more? OK, let’s move on to those pretty pillows.

My sketch for using the pillows looked like this.

Again, I rotated the sketch and I moved things around a bit. This is the end result.

I stayed true to the color scheme again and I also pulled inspiration from the stripes on the surf boards in the corner for the tiny stripes on my card.

The last sketch I made was taken from the doorway. Take a look.

And my sketch.

I changed things up a little as far as the color scheme for this last card. I liked the colors of the vase and table in the doorway and wanted to incorporate that into my design somehow. This is the card I came up with.

Take note of how I used the sea foam green color in the cover photo to make green glass jars to hold my flowers. Do not take note of my water coloring skills, though. Water coloring is not one of my strong points. I kind of stink at it, actually!

So there you have it. At least three sketches, a winning color combination (or two), and endless design possibilities without even opening the cover of the magazine! You know there are lots more of the same to be found when you open up the magazine and browse through the pages. Consider the amount of magazines there are to be found all around every day, from the coffee tables in our living rooms, the shelves of the library, or the racks of the bookstore. Not to mention the ones we page through when we’re waiting at the dentists office or the hair salon. Truly inspiration is all around us right at our finger tips. We just need to know where to look and how to interpret what we see that we like onto paper.

I hope some of what I shared today has been helpful. I’d love to hear about ways you go about finding inspiration.
No go out and read a magazine!

Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your sweet comments. Even if I haven’t responded, please know that I love reading them. They are what keep me blogging! Seriously!

16 thoughts on “finding inspiration

  1. kolleen seibel says:

    Wow brenda ……. incredible !!!!! I wish I had as much creativenes up top as you did. I was just thinking of reorganzing my scarp book stuff. NOT much going today!

  2. christi says:

    Thanks for sharing your creative process with us. I’ve used magazines for color or layout ideas but never the actual placement of furniture in the photos to get ideas! I’m going to have to take another flip through my Martha with fresh eyes.

  3. Diane Mengel says:

    OMG….this is so fantastic!! I love the way you process things! I will have to start looking at things differently. I love your cards!!

  4. Lorraine says:

    Wow, wow, wow – you absolutely rocked that magazine cover with your imagination and creations! Thanks for sharing how you are inspired – fun to see how others are inspired!

  5. Karen H. says:

    Wowzers! All those ideas just from the cover! OK, I really need to get that leaf set now, lol! The cards are all fabulous – you have such a great eye for details.

  6. Bonnie says:

    I love your water color skills puts the perfect touch to the picture & the card design.
    You designing skills never cease to amaze me. I could have looked at that same picture for a week & never come up with that many designs. I might have used the color combination but your designs are great! It certianly is a talent.
    Be blessed for using your talent for others to enjoy.

  7. diane says:

    you have no idea how much i love your ideas! thank you thank you thank you. some how it passes through all my creative juices and lands up in my soul. love your blog. keep being creative. my soul loves it 🙂

  8. Karen Walker says:

    Just fabulous! I should print this out and keep it with me when I’m reading magazines!! I just love the card based on the sketch from the table and lamp–brilliant.

  9. Danielle says:

    Brilliant! I love how you really broke down how you get your inspiration from one totally gave me a new way to look for inspiration-Thanks!!! 🙂

  10. jeannette Siciliani says:

    I absolutely love magazines for inspiration; and I love what you did! AMAZING. I’ve been so busy lately, and I’m so happy to find a little time to catch up on my favorite blogs, like yours.

  11. Staci Miserlian says:

    Great! I like to do the same thing with magazines, using their layout & design for my cards & scrapbook pages. Might as well, they pay big bucks for people to design those. You have done your interpretations really wonderfully!

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