Thursday, August 21, 2014

Masculine Lighthouse Birthday Card: Published

I just found out that this card has recently been Published in Scrap & Stamp Arts Magazine!
Next month is my husband's birthday. This guy is truly my best friend and partner in this journey called life. Two years ago I was going through a very scary health issue and my husband Sandy was there every minute to help with the decisions, surgery and recuperation. He had to put up with my tears and moods too. I'm fine by the way, but will continue to be monitored by my wonderful doctor at the Mayo in Jacksonville, Florida.

I wanted to make my husband Sandy a very special birthday card.

Dreamweaver Stencil - LG665
Stamping Detail -Rubber Mat (not the same as thin mat used for cutting with Spellbinder dies)
Marvy watercolor markers
Stencil brushes
Scrap paper
Removable tape

Direction for using the heavier larger Dreamweaver Stencils in the Cuttlebug:

1. Place stencil on acrylic plate using removable tape to hold in place. I bought new "B" plate and reserve them just for embossing. A set of 2 were on sale recently at Michaels. My old ones were very warped and might have ruined both my machine and the new stencils.

2. Place paper over the stencil and tape using removable tape.

3. Place Stamping Details rubber mat on top of your paper.

4. Place scrap paper as a shim on top of rubber mat.

5. Sandwich with the other "B" plate.

6.Place on the thick spacer plate.

7. Run through and emboss!

Stencil taped to paper to go through Cuttlebug. Blue tape was used to show, but the tape doesn't release easily!

Layers ready to go through the Cuttlebug

Going through the Cuttlebug

Embossed lighthouse after going through Cuttlebug

Stencil and embossed design

Stencil ready for color to be added
Stenciling in the colors with special stencil brushes and marker colors from the palette 

Stencil and finished lighthouse design

Finished stenciling 

Finished outside of card

Letters cut on my Cricut using my Gypsy and then glued inside the card.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Fun in the Sun at Flagler Beach, Florida

Photo sketch by Sandy Brooke, Digital Image by Mo's Digital Pencil and card by Carla Brooke
It’s summer and it’s time to hit the beach. Just one and a half hours from Orlando, is the seaside town of Flagler Beach. The town is on an island bordered on the east by the Atlantic Ocean and on the west by the wetlands of the Interacoast Waterway.These unspoiled beaches are easily accessible located as they are; 68 miles south of Jacksonville, 31 miles south of historic St. Augustine, and 20 miles north of Daytona Beach. Few tourists traveling on I-95 realize the treasure that they are passing up. Nineteen miles of unique red sand beaches, virtually traffic-free, with unlimited access are waiting to be discovered by the discerning traveler. The red coloration of the sand is derived from the coquina formed from seashells.
Photo sketch by Sandy Brooke, Digital Image by Mo's Digital Pencil and card by Carla Brooke
There is an 800-foot pier to tempt fishermen of all ages and skills. Some 46 varieties of fish may be landed from the 25-ft. deep waters that the wharf accesses. There is a bait shop at the foot of the pier where you can rent fishing gear and purchase bait and supplies. Eateries, gift shops and galleries are located along scenic A1A.
For young people who still find it exciting to risk life and limb there is a new skate park located near the beach. This exciting complex was built by the county and is situated at Wadsworth Park. It is on the North side of SR 100 just ½ mile West of the Flagler Beach Bridge.
The Intracoastal Waterway, constructed in 1890 helped to attract fisherman and permanent residents, with its wide, deep-water channel through the wetlands and marshes. Here they discovered plentiful wildlife; including crabs, tarpon, bass, manatees and dolphins. Flying overhead and wading in the shallows are numerous herons and egrets.
The community was originally called Ocean City and the first homes were built in 1913. The beachside community began to grow, with the addition of a general store and the Ocean City Post Office. The beach proved popular with campers, sun worshipers, fishermen and later with surfers. In 1923, the United States Post Office declared “Flagler Beach” its official name. At the Flagler Beach Museum, vintage photographs and artifacts gathered from pioneer families illustrating the area’s history. This museum is located at 207 South Central Avenue, Flagler Beach 32136. The museum hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Sunday and the First Friday of each month 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.. For more information and holiday hours call 386 517-2025.
Although located in one of the fastest growing counties in Florida, Flagler Beach in Flagler County has managed to retain its small town atmosphere. Holidays in this town are usually celebrated with much flair and fanfare. The town celebrated July 4th with a parade in the morning and in the evening a colorful fireworks display over the ocean, just beyond the pier. This exciting presentation was enjoyed from the boardwalk alongside the dunes of the beach.  For information on upcoming events call the Flagler County Chamber of Commerce at 386 437-0106.
Photo sketch by Sandy Brooke, Digital Image by Sassy Cheryl and card by Carla Brooke
Photo sketch by Sandy Brooke, Digital Image by Mo's Digital Pencil and card by Carla Brooke

Nearby in Palm Coast, public-spirited volunteers in partnership with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services are constructing the new Florida Agricultural Museum in a desire to educate the public about Florida’s agricultural past and future. The museum promises to be the state’s largest living history museum, to house and display artifacts collected from across Florida.  Here, in the future visitors will view the beginnings of farm technology and large-scale production of agricultural products. The Florida Agricultural Museum is located at 1850 Princess Place Road, Palm Coast, Florida 32137. 
A trip to Flagler County, Florida is fun in the sun and more!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Memorial Gardens in Ormond Beach, Florida, where the Fairies are!

I am willing to bet you didn't know that fairies live in husband and I went on a photo shoot to a local gardens and there they were just hanging about!

The Memorial Gardens, is a lush, tropical rainforest nestled into the heart of the Ormond Beach adjoining the Ormond Beach Art Museum. It features native and exotic plants, water features, and a gazebo. The Gardens contain five ponds that are home to numerous turtles, frogs and fish. Aquatic plants such as water lilies and water lettuces offer food, shade and natural cleansing within the ponds. Plants such as papyrus, bananas, ginger lilies and wild flowers, which flourish near the three ponds that were formed by natural depressions.

Belgian-trained Chicago landscape architect, Henry Stockman designed the gardens in the 1940s, which feature both manicured landscape and natural areas. Many weddings have been held in this magnificent setting. The Gardens are situated on approximately 2.5 acres at the southeast corner of Granada Boulevard between Seton Trail and Halifax Drive.

Actually these lovely fairies are from the My Craft Studio, Midsummer Garden CD. The disc came with the 2nd addition of My Craft Studio Academy Magazine. I put the fairies from My Craft Studio into Craft Artist 2 along with my husbands great photo sketched shots!
Then there was this one tourist, who could not find his way out of the gardens! 
This sweet little fellow is a digital stamp from Mo's Digital Pencil.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Ocean Walk, Daytona Beach, Florida

Recently, my husband Sandy and I went to Ocean Walk in Daytona Beach. He took pictures for my new series of cards and we lunched at Johnny Rocket! Of course I went off my self imposed diet and had a wonderful cheeseburger and sweet potato fries! I also ate some of Sandy's cheese fries (I was bad that day). The waiters did a fun line dance to an old rock tune, that was adorable! They have nickel machines at each table to play rock music from back in the day, but only the ones at the counter work. It was fun. This story is illustrated by those cards, made from the pictures that Sandy took that day and sketched with his camera and I added digital images to. Now, that's fun too!

Ocean Walk Shoppes and Movies boasts something for the whole family to enjoy! From its bold, geometric shapes and electrifying colors, to its picturesque setting next to the historic Bandshell on the Atlantic Ocean, Ocean Walk Shoppes and Movies offer a unique dining, shopping and entertainment experiences in Daytona Beach. You can come to play and stay all day! Ocean Walk Shoppes features a family friendly retail center with recognizable tenants like Bubba Gump Shrimp Company, Johnny Rocket's, Sloppy Joe's, Ker's WingHouse, Starbucks, Cold Stone Creamery, Quizno's, Sunglass Hut and Maui Nix Surf Shop.

Ocean Walk is near numerous Daytona Beach hotels and condominiums, which front on to the incredible beach, where you can enjoy a host of amenities and a spectacular entertainment.
 You'll find shops, restaurants and movies just steps away from several upscale Daytona Beach resorts. You can stay at the area's only traffic-free beach and enjoy an array of outdoor activities.

Set against balmy breezes and anchored by 23 miles of clean, hard-packed white sand, Daytona Beach is known as the World’s Most Famous Beach. Daytona Beach is internationally known for its racing roots, hosting some of the largest motorsports events in the world including the Daytona 500, as known as the "Great American Race."

Tourists and residents treasure Daytona Beach southern hospitality. The residents and millions of visitors enjoy moderate weather, exceptional recreational activities, an active arts community and, the family-friendly beaches.

The climate in Daytona Beach ideal. The area enjoys mild, year-round temperatures which range from an average of 59.3F (20.6C) in the winter to an average temperature of 78.5F (30.4C) in the summer.

So if you enjoy watching a fast-paced sporting event, a stroll on the beach, or somewhere in between, Daytona Beach can accommodate many different speeds and lifestyles.

Digital images are from Sassy Cheryl and also from Mo's Digital Pencil. Backgrounds are by Sandy Brooke.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

St. Augustine's Carousel

St. Augustine has a treasure just north of the City Gates, it's the J&S Carousel.  Charles Wallace Parker, known for his Country Fair style manufactured this mechanism that carries a variety of carousel art.

A collection of American Carousel Art at its most dramatic and enchanting would include, not only the Country style such as Parker, but the ornate grandeur of M.C. Illions of the Coney Island style and the famed carver D.C. Muller who brought realism to the Philadelphia style.

The Country Fair style, form-following-function horse, of C.W. Parker were typically long and sleek, and were developed to withstand a whirlwind of travel throughout the Midwest in carnivals.  Country Fair animals were more stylized than the Coney Island style or the Philadelphia style.
Parker of Abilene, Kansas bought a secondhand carousel and took it on tour in 1892.  The invigorated showman became the “Amusement King” “Colonel” Parker, a colorful showman.
Parker decided that he could build a better machine after 1892 and was in production as Parker Carnival Supply Company within two years.  His early horses were small and carved in standard poses with compact, portable designs and hair tails.
Cost-efficient entertainment was his aim, rather than establishing an original artistic style.  These machines were setup and dismantled every few days as the carnivals criss crossed the country each summer.
Parker horses changed, as the industry became more sophisticated since he understood the necessity for novelty and flamboyance.  After a move to Leavenworth, Kansas in 1911, Parker’s carousel horses became wild creatures, with forelegs ready for a lunge and hind legs kicked out.  Parker Amusement Company became the world’s largest manufacturer of Amusement devices.
Parker’s “carry-us-all” were small and portable, designed for traveling fairs and carnivals.  His catalogs give testimonials by satisfied buyers about the earning power, ease and speed of erecting and dismantling the machines.  This was an advantage in beating competition to the customer’s purse.
Despite these testimonials to a quality product, his animals were constructed with glue and iron nail, considered a shortcut, instead of dowels.  Few survived the rough life of constant movement in carnivals.  This fact alone makes the C.W. Parker carousel in St. Augustine very special.  The “Amusement King”, Charles Wallace Parker, died in 1932 at age 68.  This was five years after the St. Augustine Carousel was manufactured.
Although the carousel and its’ painted ponies originated in Europe, they achieved their highest artistic glory in America and once they numbered in the thousands.  No trip to an amusement park, carnival or state fair was complete without mounting one of their brightly colored steeds.
Once they transported millions-young and old alike – to the far reaches of imagination.  The distances they traveled were measured not in miles, but in dreams.
My grandson
Now, their numbers are few but the memories and the lore remain, as do the exquisitely crafted museum pieces of the painted ponies, the multicolored giraffes, and the camels in their ornate trappings.
The City of St. Augustine itself has a wonderful appeal for many reasons, but not everyone knows about the carousel.  The St. Augustine, C.W. Parker carousel was built in 1927 and is owned by James Soules, local resident.
Mr. Soules inherited the carousel from his late brother Gerard Soules, who was a famous performer with the Ringling Brothers Barnum  and Bailey Circus.  He found the carousel in a barn in Mystique, Michigan in 1987, purchasing it for $25,000.  Jerry spent another $70,000 restoring it, replacing the machine’s metal horses with fiberglass reproductions of Illions, Carmel, Muller and Dentzel horses.  With the help of Carl Theel of Theel Manufacturing in Leavenworth, KS, he expanded the mechanism from its original 28 feet to 34 feet in diameter.  Theel fabricated new fiberglass rounding boards, wooden platforms and hardware; it would be the last carousel Carl Theel worked on before passing away in 1992. 
The carousel was in operation in 1992 at the Fort Wayne, Indiana Zoo.  Gerard Soules was working at the famed Circus, Circus in Las Vegas, Nevada, when a burglar killed him.  He was fifty-six years old.
After inheriting the machine, James Soules restored the carousel for a second time in 1992.  Two years later in November of 1994, he brought the C.W. Parker carousel to its present location in St. Augustine. Old time music plays while the carousel…now known as the J&S Carousel, takes you back to another era. There have been two weddings on the carousel.   In 1998 James Soules’ daughter was married aboard the carousel.  Previous to that an ex-employee was married on it in 1995. 
My grandson and his dad

Santa appears just after Thanksgiving at the carousel.  Rides are one dollar. This colorful carousel is located in Davenport Park between San Marco Avenue and US 1 at San Carlos Avenue, next to the Public Library building.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Marineland, Florida

My husband Sandy at the original entrance to Marineland.
I recently got a request for greeting cards featuring mermaids. I made a few cards using copyright free backgrounds, but my husband suggested a trip to Marineland for some local backgrounds. Marineland is in Flagler County, Florida on the northern border.

After living down the road from Marineland for 15 years, we decided to go for a visit. Marineland opened in 1938 as Marine Studios. The original vision was to duplicate marine life in nature to meet the needs of Holywood's demand for underwater footage. By the 1960s Marine Studios became Marineland of Florida, a popular public attraction showcasing dolphins and giving stadium style performances. Films and TV shows continued to use the facilities.
An old photo of what the facility used to be like back in the early day and in 1977!
Marineland was a show type theme park, when we were there in 1977. Things have changed some since my 4 year old son and I sat in the front row viewing a performance (we got a soaking wet) by dolphins in a large tank. Now the facility is owned by Georgia Aquarium and is dedicated to dolphin and small whale rescue and research. Through several Marineland Dolphin Adventures they work to increase public awareness and contribute to scientific study through conservation. Due to a series of hurricanes in 2004, many of the original structures needed to be replaced. Only the gift shop is the original building, in which I walked around during my many outings with my son in 1977.
A recent visitor in the gift shop.
When we arrived for our recent visit, I introduced myself and my husband Sandy to Meghann Dendler. Knowing that the facility is on the look out for stories from visitors, I began to tell ours and while doing so, she called in Diego Aizcorbe, the Guest Services Manager. He was intrigued by our story.

Here is where this story gets pretty interesting. In 1977 my husband was on the camera crew shooting a 3D movie called "Sea Dream" at Marineland. He and I and our 4 year old son came down from New York and lived for about 4 months at the Four Winds Condominiums. Others on the crew for this 3D movie also lived there in condos right on the beach! One time we traveled as a caravan throughout the area filming the movie which was later shown at Marineland. I would often visit the facility with my son, buy fudge and just enjoy the surroundings. We were given every courtesy and the staff even put out nets for shrimp, which I learned to cook and enjoyed a special dish with our invited guests.
I remember these jaws way back before Danni was born!
After listening to our story, Meghann us personalized tour of Marineland. My husband took pictures and we were truly impressed with the changes that were made over the many years. Then we came to a room which had many artifacts from the days when this was both a film studio and a performance based facility. There on the wall was the only poster of the movie "Sea Dream" and as we looked further at the collection of camera equipment, we saw that these were the same ones my husband used 37 years ago.
Poster of the 3D movie shot so many years ago.
The notations that he and others on the crew made on each piece of equipment were still there! The movie itself is missing and will now be looked for in the air conditioned warehouse. The theater in which it was shown has been gone for many years. Diego has assured us that he would make every effort to find that film and he would get in touch with us. My husband in turn promised to look for the stills, which he took while shooting with the motion picture camera 37 years ago. The two men will one day get together and enhance that display.
Meghann Dendler next to the actual camera my husband used 37 year ago!


 For additional information go to:

Monday, June 30, 2014

Husband and Wife a Team

This card was created for a challenge at Mo's Digital Pencil, using "Superduper Girl." "It's a Girls World" is the theme.

I just want to talk a bit about what went into making this card, which is a truly collaborative effort between my self and my wonderful husband Sandy. Like most of my recent cards, Sandy takes the shots (this is the carousel in St. Augustine, Florida) and then somehow in his camera manipulates the photo, resulting in a scene with amazing colors and line.

Yes, his work could very well stand on its own and has! What makes this different is that the shots were done a specially for the backgrounds of my cards! I follow that work by placing my pencil colored digital images in the forground using the Craft Artist 2 program.

I want to thank Elaine Wheeler and Sue Peck for tipping me off about this marvelous program and for being there for me, when I'm in a jam. Both of these lovely ladies are my newest good friends living in the UK!