creative Therapy

Catalyst Seventy-Nine
September 13, 2009, 7:17 am
Filed under: catalyst


As always, thank you to all of our visitors and all the encouraging comments you left for us. For those of you who did, thank you for playing along with us.


Ok! Here’s catalyst number seventy-nine:


What’s a family or personal tradition your cherish?


We’re so excited to have Traci Bautista as this week’s Guest Artist.


I met Traci briefly during CHA Winter 2007. She was teaching a make’n’take where we created a collaged journal cover. It was one of my favorite make and takes from the show and Traci was so patient and so nice as she showed is how to do it. She then signed copies of her book: Collage Unleashed and there, too, she took her time and created a piece of art inside each book as she signed them.


Traci’s art is beautiful, creative, layered and like no other. She makes printable downloads, she teaches art workshops, and also teaches online.


If you haven’t seen Traci’s art, make sure to visit her her blog or her site. You can also follow her on twitter.





Here is Traci’s art with this week’s catalyst. You can click on it to see a larger version and more detail.




Traci Says:

        ~Halloween MEMORIES~

Playing. costume.   excitement.         Candy.

  creative.     making.  crafty.     {hobo. catwoman. Pocahontas.clown}


cherished memories.     trickORtreat.        photo with daddy…


    dark.flashlights.hoping 4 good candy.LOVE.


Ever since I was a child, dressing up for Halloween has been a tradition in our family. My parents would let us choose our costumes every year. I’ve had numerous costumes throughout the years and most have had some sort of handmade element. From the little hobo outfit, to the bunny costume to my days playing Catwoman, a Moulin Rouge dancer and Pocahontas..creating handmade costumes has allowed me to express my creativity through costume. A yearly tradition was to take a photo in the front door with my dad before we went out trick-or-treating. He would always do the same pose with the growling sound…such fond memories. Now with my niece the tradition continues. For her first Halloween, the little “Glow Worm” took a snapshot with papa in front of the door.


Technique Highlight:

The collage art quilt was created by stitching together leftover pieces of my handpainted papers and fabrics. I have a scrap stash that I save and then pull bits and pieces from the stash to create the background collage. I sew randomly wild stitches using straight and zigzag setting. To attach the photos, I used my product line, Collage Pauge, to adhere them to paper frame. Then, I sewed photocopies of the original photos onto a dyed paper towel and color lasers of my original artwork to create the frames. Once I finished the composition, I took photos of the art quilt and added a couple digital photos. The freestyle patchwork quilt is never a planned piece, I pick pieces from my stash and build until I am satisfied with the composition. It’s a very random and freeing way to work. Let your creative intuition take over and have fun piecing together leftovers.



Thank you so much Traci; we’re so very very honored.



Here are some interpretations of the catalyst from members of our team.



Amy Says:

I am one of those people that believes in personal tradition and ritual. I cherish the small things that define my days and weeks and years with moments of symbolic routine. But when I considered this catalyst, I wasn’t sure where to focus, what to pull out, and I realized that in this moment in my life, the traditions that I crave are hard to spot. The one I chose to illustrate is partly reality and partly wishful thinking. It is a concept that will always be with me even if I don’t always manage to make it happen. The tradition: watching the sun rise on one’s birthday.




Rachel Says:

It started out with Young’s Farm and then moved on to Windmill Farms when Young’s closed down. The annual trip to the pumpkin farm is my most cherished and treasured of traditions, starting when I was a little girl. The pumpkin picking, the cider, the barbeque, the hayrides and pony rides have become an integral part of my life and of my very favorite of seasons… the season all about gratitude, fall. We have gone every year of Roslyn’s life and always will. It feels like home to me.


Technique Highlight:

To create custom pumpkin embellishments, I simply punch out three circles using my large circle punches and distressed the edges. I then layered them so that they resembled a pumpkin, and added some pen stitching.




Larissa Says:

I happily remember all the events/traditions related to the preparation of Christmas Eve. What a delight to get back in time where my aunts and grandmothers were sewing little Santa boots, making sweets, ornamenting trees while my cousins and I excitedly waited for the arrival of the good old man. Being able to see him through the window, decorated with Christmas lights, makes it even more the most perfect translation of a magic moment I can give…and this is the tradition I try to recreate annually in my home for my daughter. Her joy starts with the setting of the Christmas tree, a moment of which I decided to portray for this catalyst.





Opal Says:

Once, not so very long ago, I held many traditions which revolved around my family and children, birthdays, and holidays. As children do, they grew up and moved away, and they now have families and their own traditions. Loved ones have passed on. Cherished traditions have taken their toll…becoming cherished memories. I have one tradition that bridges my family of today, and yesterdays. When we get together, children and grand kids, grandparents, cousins, nieces and nephews, I always use pieces from my mom’s complete set of Jewel Tea Autumn Leaf dinnerware. She was very proud of this collection. It was in the years after WWII in the housing tracts built for return servicemen…The Jewel Tea truck drove slowly down the residential street in the city where I grew up. Honking the horn to signal his approach, housewives and children would run out to see what goodies he had that week, bread, sugar, coffee, donuts. Somehow there were points earned..and the points were accumulated and traded for dishes…These were her every day dishes, so they do show signs of wear. It is this that we all love. So, we use her Jewel Tea dishes, and one of us makes something from one of her recipes….Her apple pie recipe I used on this piece is in her own handwriting..printed on fabric, and cut into pieces to show that it is shared by all of us. The dinner plate is my version of the Jewel Tea Autumn Leaf design…the piece is quilted by machine and hand, with raw edge applique and embellished with gold thread.




Journaling Reads:

december is my favorite time of year. it’s when we get to buy a beautiful tree that gives off the most amazing scent in our house for a whole month. the tree that’s lit up. the tree that brings me joy every single day. it’s also when i get almost two weeks off work to enjoy my time with my family so we can curl up in front of the tv or the fire or our tree and enjoy each other’s company. december is when all the houses in our neighborhood light up and spread the joy. but the best part of december, for me, is the little book i get to create every single day. full of our memories, our daily moments. i love putting the pages together before the month starts and sitting to alter each page every day. just a little bit of art and a little bit of memory-keeping that allows me to re-live my day and smile. my december daily album is something i cherish deeply and a tradition that is here to stay.


Karen Says:

Two years ago, thanks to Shimelle, I started a december album. Last year, thanks to Ali, I did a more personalized december daily album and I fell in love with it so much that it’s, by far, one of my most cherished albums. You can see the pages in my albums here: 2007 and 2008. I highly recommend making one of these.


Technique Highlight:

It seems I go through phases when I create my catalysts. Sometimes they’re artsy, sometimes plain, sometimes with no journaling and sometimes with a lot. Ordinarily, I am someone who likes to journal a lot and I like to create journaling strips because they allow me to create a design with the words if I so choose. So in the next few weeks you’ll see that my pages will all have a lot of journaling and I will create the art/design around the journaling. Sometimes it’s all about the words.


Why is this in a binder?





Wendela Says:

Well, this November I’m married with my dearest for 17 years!!! And the tradition is…making a special day for our wedding anniversary :)..with a little party, or a dinner for two…a beautiful present…so exciting! Can’t wait till November 20th!


Technique Highlight:

The background I used is a chipboard book cover from 7 gypsies. The edges are crunched, and how I do that? With water! Make the edges wet, wait a few seconds, and the chipboard is more soft, so that you can crunch it with your hands…





Journaling Reads:

Every year we send out a lot of invitations to friends and family letting them know the details of our pumpkin carving party. We set up tables and tools and all together we laugh and spend time.




Now it’s your turn: show us your therapeutic art around “What’s a family or personal tradition your cherish?” I urge you to give it a try. It can be any form of art as long as it speaks to you.


Leave us comments with your work and you will qualify for the RAK we offer to a random participant. If you don’t have a community or blog where you upload photos, you can upload them on our flickr group.



Remember, this is not a competition. If your art makes you feel even a bit better at the end, you’ve won.


Until next week, enjoy each and every moment.




2 Comments so far
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My husband and I both had gardening grandmothers, and over the years, we’ve done our best to recreate their beautiful gardens. every autumn we take a day off from work to garden together, and we usually give each other garden related gifts. Here’s a montage of photos.

Comment by Alberta

[…] Personal Tradition […]

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