Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Potion Thyme Witch

This is a new pattern on my website called Potion Thyme Witch, it is painted on a star shape which is available from Creative Arts Lifestyle  You can find the pattern on my website

Friday, July 14, 2017

Sculpting with Paper Clay Part 2

Spent a little time today working on painting this little guy and I'm so thrilled with the progress.  He is really beginning to take on a personality with the addition of paint.  I'm beginning to think about what my next sculpture will be, I'm thinking about something to accompany this guy, maybe a snowman? Maybe a pet for him?  Hmmm.......

I need to finish up the scarf, gloves, hair, and the crook.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Sculpting with Paper Clay

Every year I spend a week at my Dad's sculpting studio where he is teaching me how to sculpt.  We've done this now for many years and every year is a new adventure.  Last year we decided that I was ready to begin sculpting one of my own designs.  I used a sketch that I had worked up of a winter elf.  We used a wire armature and began developing the character using Paper Clay.  In the past we have used the oil based clay but I wanted something that did not need to be bronzed to make it permanent.  Paper Clay is a self-hardening clay which did not need to be baked.  There was a bit of a learning curve to deal with the clay as it is slightly different from the oil based clay I had always used.  This is how far we got the first year.
 This year my goal was to finish the "gremlin" as I had fondly called him.  I wanted to add boots, hair, a base, and something for him to hold in his hand.
We added a shepherds crook for him to hold onto and attached him to a wood base where I added snow to the ground.  Now it was time to begin the painting process.
So far so good.  Check back later to see how he develops personality as I finish painting him.  

Thursday, June 1, 2017

70 Days Art Challenge with Kelly Hoernig

I began an art challenge with the talented Kelly Hoernig 18 days ago and it will last for 70 days.  She was inspired to begin this challenge after traveling to France and becoming inspired by Van Gogh.  I may have been drawn to this challenge because Van Gogh has always been one of my favorite artists, maybe it is because he lived such a tortured life but I prefer to think that I am inspired by his genius.  Needless to say I joined the challenge knowing that I struggle to be consistent during an art challenge, at some point in time during the challenge I lose interest and only do those daily challenge pieces which interest me.  I am determined to finish this challenge completely and am finding it to be an inspirational activity.  For one thing I've had the opportunity to use both my acrylics and my watercolors.  I tend to let my watercolors sit instead of using them as often as I'd like but decided to pull them out and to use them this time.  I'm finding that even though I may not like a daily challenge piece the opportunity to stretch myself as an artist is really appealing.  Hopefully I will not lose interest and will continue to be consistent with this challenge as it may help me grow as an artist.

Kelly has given us a series of words as prompts and then we take those words and use the word to develop an artistic interpretation of the word.  She also films a series of videos each week showing a variety of techniques.  I've learned new techniques as well as being inspired by the talented artists who are participating.  They are all amazing.    

These are just a few of my daily challenge pieces:

You can read all about the challenge and join us on her website at    

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

This new pattern is called Reindeer Crossing and is available on my website  This is a part of a series of picket patterns.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Gell Print Papers to be Used in Design Work

These two projects are called Celebration Santa and Celebration Snowman.  For both of these projects I printed the papers which were used in Santa's coat and hat and the Snowman's coat and hat on my Gelli Plate.  I think it is genius and makes short work of painting the coat, simply print the papers using the paint colors that you want to use for the coats, once dry cut the coats out of the paper and decoupage to your canvas or surface.  Both of these projects are available on my website as online classes and as patterns.  How cool is that to use the Gelli Plate to complete a section of your project.

If you are interested in purchasing a Gelli Plate to begin printing your own papers to use in design work look at them through my Amazon Affiliate program.  If you click through from this link and purchase I will get credit and you will get a great tool.  This is a tool that I use regularly and recommend highly.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Upcycled Glass Doodling

I am a published artist!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  I must say that I am very excited and thrilled that Viking Woodcrafts felt that my glass doodling techniques were book worthy!  This book is currently available and is jam packed with tips, techniques, step by step photos and instructions for 12 bottle designs.  We will use the Deco Art Glass Paint markers to shade and highlight each bottle to add depth and interest.  Want to purchase the book?  Come on over to C. Hartman Designs
 to reserve your copy today.  If you purchase the book from my website you will also receive access to 6 Glass Doodling Technique Videos.  For those of you who are visual learners these videos will enhance the book experience.  Come join me on my glass painting journey.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Conversion Chart for the Deco Art Fluid Acrylics

I recently published these Inspirational Mini Canvas project in the February issue of the Pixelated Palette.  I used the Deco Art Fluid Acrylics and was asked for a conversion chart for Deco Art Americana Paint instead.  I was not able to find one on the Deco Art website and had to instead come up with one on my own.  This is not exact but I did find Americana paints which I felt were close and would work well together.

Deco Art Fluid Acrylic Paint Color                                   Deco Art Americana Paint Color
Blue Green Light                                                    Sea Breeze 

Cadmium Orange Hue                                            Jack-O'-Lantern Orange 
Cerulean Blue                                                         Sapphire 
Cobalt Teal Hue                                                      Turquoise Blue
Cobalt Turquoise Hue                                             Desert Turquoise 
Hansa Yellow Medium                                            Bright Yellow 
Metallic Gold                                                         Any Metallic Gold paint
Primary Cyan                                                           Sapphire
Primary Magenta                                                      Razzle Berry 
Primary Yellow                                                        Bright Yellow
Pyrole Orange                                                          Orange Flame
Pyrole Red                                                                Berry Red
Quinacridone Magenta                                             Red Violet
Quinacridone Red                                                    Santa Red
Quinacridone Violet                                                 Black Plum
Vermillion                                                                 Cad Orange
Yellow Green Light                                                  Bright Green

Friday, March 17, 2017

My Favorite Art Supplies for Children for Watercolors

As many of you know, I've just retired from a 35 year teaching career as a K-8th Grade Art Specialist.  Over the course of those many years spent with children I've learned what supplies do and do not work well.  Let's face it, kids are hard on art supplies, brushes in particular.  I continually reminded them to not GRIND their brushes into the paint, do not leave their brushes lying in water, when cleaning the brushes remember to clean them completely, and my personal favorite... do not tap your paint brush on the tub of water after cleaning or before.  Any ideas why that was my personal favorite?  After my go rounds of tears from kids who were either splattered with paint, or their projects were splattered with paint I learned early on that was one of the Golden Rules of painting in the art room.  I bet even today I have students who have graduated from High School and moved on to their own careers but will remember Mrs. Hartman harping on them about that.  I also always used washable paint with my very youngest students.

 Let's talk a little about some of my personal favorite supplies.  Yes, these also happen to be affiliate links to Amazon and if you click on them and purchase through the link then I get credit and hopefully someday will make a little extra money. However they are also here for your convenience.  I always wanted my own personal shopper and who wouldn't like to have someone break down what does or does not work well for children, especially aspiring young artists.

This is an excellent set of paints, particularly for the child who does not GRIND their brush into the paint. It is a very good quality paint set which is a step just below tube watercolors but will give your child a wonderfully rich palette of colors to begin with and will last for a very long time.  I used these with my students from the 5th grades on up through middle school.  However younger children can use them easily.
  Tube watercolors are a great option for the child who is ready to take care of their paints and ready for the next step in watercolor. These are a good quality paint to begin your child's watercolor journey. You will notice that you get 12 paints instead of 24 in the Grumbacher set. Your child should have an understanding or an interest in developing an understanding of color mixing at this stage.
Cake Tempera is a wonderful option for young children who want to paint a lot and are not quite ready for the investment of a watercolor set!!!  These are incredibly economical, will last for years and give that watercolor look in a paint set that fits most parents budgets. They can also be used for school projects that come home as homework.   I used these with all of my students up through 5th grade and occasionally with middle school.  This set even comes with the palette.  I actually used this brand with my students and it is of very good quality.

 Let's talk about brushes:  I recommend that kids only use a round brush.  At some point in time the serious student will want to explore a variety of shapes and sizes of brushes but for most children the round should be the starter go to brush.  Buy different sized rounds so they have a variety to work with.  A round brush helps them learn brush control.

  In my classroom, my go to brushes were these Dynasty Eye of the Tiger Brushes, they have an acrylic handle and are EXTREMELY durable.  I had a set this size and it lasted for over 10 years before I had to begin replacing brushes.  I did not allow the primary age students K-2 to use these.  I began letting the 3rd graders use these all the way up through middle school.  These stand up to kids very nicely and still give superb performance.  Why an acrylic handle?  Some children and adults do not like how a wood handle feels in their hands, especially if the finish on the handle begins to crack and peel.
 I realize that most of you will not want to purchase a class set of brushes, this is a good option instead.  The problem with this set is that you do not get larger round brushes.

  Royal Brushes are a good option for children, I had many of these in my classroom and they also held up really well to the tortures that children put them through.  These do come on larger sizes, this is the basic set.
 Here is another excellent brush for adults and kids.  These are also Dynasty Brushes, Black Gold is an amazing quality synthetic brush for a fantastic price.  I've listed a number of sizes that I prefer and use in my own artwork whether I'm using acrylics or watercolors.  These are more of an investment and have a wood handle but the wood handle stands up well to kid use.

I've had many students over the years both privately and in my classroom and I always try to find the best quality materials that I could afford or I felt that my students could afford.  That is a good rule of thumb for any aspiring artist whether you are a parent buying for a child or buying for yourself.  I've tried to give you a number of good options that I personally can recommend and have used both myself and as a teacher.

I'm planning to do a number of these posts and wonder what would you like to see me compare next?  

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Free Pattern at C. Hartman Designs

This pattern was first published in the Pixelated Palette online magazine and is now available as a free pattern at C. Hartman Designs.  You can find it at this link  Mixed Media Valentine Project.  Enjoy!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

One Point Perspective Video Class at C. Hartman Designs

During my 35 year teaching career my students completed this project.  It is kid tested and teacher approved.  Join me, children of all ages, while we experience one point perspective successfully.  I will teach you the techniques necessary to complete the project: developing converging lines, learning to sketch a caricature, using a theme to complete the foreground, middle ground and background.  All of this while using inexpensive art supplies.  I will guide you through the process so that you feel comfortable enough to develop your own ideas for the project.  Parents can feel comfortable allowing their children to develop the project on their own or may join in for a shared art experience. This project is for children of all ages but kid tested with 4th-8th grade students however if you are an adult who simply wants to develop your art skills this class is for you as well. Join me at C. Hartman Designs to learn more about this opportunity for you and your child.  

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Capital Letters and Calligraphy Practice

Here I am practicing capital letters in my Calligraphy class.  It was difficult and I need lots of practice but anything worth doing is worth doing well.  

This is me practicing last week using a variety of nibs and different inks.  If you have followed me on my blog you know that I am an art supply junkie so of course learning a new media is just an opportunity to purchase new supplies.  LOL.  My daughter and I have been taking this class together and she has been thrilled that I have so many art supplies because that means that she doesn't have to purchase as many supplies.  But I've tried Sumi Ink, colored inks, parallel pens, and a variety of nibs.  If you look carefully you will see all of these supplies used on these pieces.  

These two books are my favorites so far.  They are informative and definitely give tons of information about the art form.  I recommend these highly. Iv'e been using them weekly since purchasing them.

Two of the inks that I've found that I love.  Make sure that you rinse and clean the Sumi ink off of your nibs right away.  If not then I've used a little toothpaste and a toothbrush and it cleaned right off.

Speedball nibs are so far my favorite, they are easy to use and give me a fine line when needed.  Next post I will share a few more nibs that I've found that I really like.

If you want to try a great fountain calligraphy pen, I love these.

So far this is my favorite gold watercolor to use with Calligraphy.  It flows off of the pen well and produces a lovely gold color on the paper.  I've also used these in watercolor and they are amazing there as well.  More to come with these.  Love them.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Picasso and Monet, Some of my Favorite Resource Books for kids.

I've used both of these book while teaching.  Laurence Anholt writes books which are based on fact and teaches children about the artist in a fun entertaining way.  I'm planning to do children's classes using both of these books in the future.  Take a look at these, they are so fun and are definitely some of my favorite resources for children.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Showcasing a preview of my newest soon to be released online class.

 I'm in the process of putting together a series of online classes showcasing  projects which I use now and used when I was teaching.  These are kid tested and teacher approved  where children can complete the project on their own while feeling success.  These will be available in the near future on my website but thought I'd give you a sneak peek of some of the resources which I use now as an artist and used in the classroom with my students.  These are just a few of those.

Lawrence Anholt has a series of books which are based on fact about a number of famous artists.  Kids love them and get a taste of the artists life and artwork.  The two titles shown below will be listed as resources in the first online class explaining how to develop a one point perspective drawing.

The Art of Perspective is an amazing resource for all artists and goes into detail about the different ways to use perspective in your art.  I own this book and used it as a teacher and as an artist.  I would recommend it highly.

I'm in the process of filming my one point perspective class as we speak and hope to have it out sometime this spring.

Here is the sample project for the online one point perspective class.  I hope you or your child will join me.  These classes are designed for kids to work on independently but also a parent can join in and have a shared experience.

If you are interested and would like to get supplies ready click on the links to purchase the resources I've listed.

I have recently joined Amazon in their Affiliate program.  I'm looking forward to sharing products which I love and use in my art life and hope that you will consider using my links so I get credit.

Tripod for Photography

I just found this product on Amazon, it is a tripod which has a center bar which pulls out and places the camera horizontal to the table.  I think this is brilliant and think that I will try it for my online classes and tutorials.  I will post more once I have the tripod and have used it.  Take a look at the link and see what you think.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Calligraphy Journey

One of my goals for this year was to take a Calligraphy class, I'd like to eventually use calligraphy in conjunction with my artwork.  I'm certainly not there yet though.  I became interested in lettering a number of years ago, because I am a "can do" kind of person I just knew that I could teach myself Calligraphy.  As far as I can see about all that I taught myself was bad habits.  I didn't have any of the foundation work and didn't really see the point in making lettering which was the "right" size so would just practice my letters until I had a pretty letter.  I enjoyed myself but now have to break all of those bad habits.  It is certainly going to be a work in progress and can see that it is going to take time until I'm able to letter on any of my artwork using Calligraphy.

This was my first week practice, this is just the one that I kept to share with you.  I had quite a few sheets which went into the round file.  

Second week practice.  Some of the letters are getting better after hours of practice and many sheets going in the garbage.  

Third week practice, we worked on v's w's, z, and an angular y.  Much harder this week and I'm sure will throw away lots of pages.  

 I will keep you posted as to my progress, I have class on Tuesdays and if you follow me on Instagram I have tried to post samples before I throw them away.  I have a few more classes in this first session and then will take the second session as well.  Have you ever done any Calligraphy?

In person class

As many of you know I am a retired Art Teacher, taught in the public school system for 35 years and now can teach just a few students at a time which is such a privilege.  I recently taught a class to two wonderful ladies who just wanted to paint!  We Gelli printed, painted on canvases, added collage elements, stenciled and just had a wonderful time.  Look at their journey.

Want to take a class?  


Just cleaned my studio.  My husband wanted to know what I had cleaned.  .Oh well, you can't win them all.  I even cleaned off all of my shelved and reorganized and re-purposed things into the garbage.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Gel Printing with Christy Hartman

Gel Print With Christy Hartman.
Are you curious about Gell Printing?   Here is a video that you might find interesting.  

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Watercolor Techniques using Acrylics

Do you enjoy painting watercolor techniques using acrylic paints?  These cards are just a few from a set of cards that I completed for as a free download.  This project brings the background into the foreground.  I decided to do a series of You Tube Tutorial showing just a few of the techniques used in this project.  Leave me a comment.  

Friday, January 20, 2017

Altered Book/Journal Part 4 Finished

Now we will add even more paper, I like to add paper to add a different texture to the piece.  I think it makes for a more dynamic project.  Here you can see how I am auditioning various papers to see which ones I prefer.  These are all scrap booking papers but I could have used my own Gel Prints or painted papers as well.  Maybe we will save that for a later project.  I attach them with Decou-Page and removed the masking tape from the elastic band so I can use it.  I have given these as gifts to friends and use them myself as journals and art journals.  

What do you think?  Is this something you like to do?  Leave me a comment!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

My Soon to be Published Upcycled Bottle Painting Book

Here I am shipping my painted bottles to Viking for my new book which will be out sometime this spring or summer. My daughter took this photo while we were waiting in line at the Shipping Depot. I have been working on this project for the last 5 months and it is so exciting and thrilling to have completed the book and am sending the finished bottles on their way. Since I cannot post any of the photos in the book yet I'm posting the photo from my online bottle painting class Whimsical Bottle Painting 101.

Art Journal #4

As you can see from this journal page I've added paper, napkins, and some paint to develop this abstract landscape.  I didn't begin adding paper hoping to develop a landscape but it appeared as I began painting.  And you can see the result.  The paper held up well as I layered paper and napkin sections onto the book paper with matte medium.  I used the Deco Art Media Matte Medium and was really surprised how well the book paper held up to the layers and paint application.  Interesting!  

Are you participating with me?