Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Diagnosis Design #7 Jocelyn Olson

First an intro...

In medicine, we document using SOAP notes. It is an abbreviation to help keep consistent format when logging information. 

S=Subjective. What does the patient report. Subjective Data. This also includes the Chief Complaint (CC) which tells what the patients main problem is and History of Present Illness (HPI) a history of what happened to bring them in.

O=Objective. What exam findings do you gather. Objective Data.

A=Assessment. What is your Diagnosis, what differentials could there be (alternative diagnoses)

P=Plan/Education. What is the plan for the patient. What do you want them to learn?

This is the format I will use also.

Now lets begin. This is Jocelyn Olson...

Hanging out at a park with her dad and kids.

How did I come to know Jocelyn? I was looking at the Paper Crafts Blog in April of 2012. New on the scene, I was trying to just figure things out. I didn't know who was who or what was what then. I saw the card below which was nominated for Stamping Royalty 2012 and thought, what a perfect card. How can this card be so so perfect? No smudging, straight, the color choice was a little different for a holiday card, but I think that is what made it so wonderful. I loved it! 

So I did something that I had never done before. I looked at the name of the artist who made it and tried to find her. I began following her blog immediately and I was hooked. She made hand made cards look professional to me. I would study her work trying to figure out how she did it. Then I found out a magical and scary word: DIGITAL. I admire what she has brought to the crafting world, digital that is beyond just print and cut. She is the master of digital, digital-hybrid, and 100% handmade stamped cards and is bringing digital to the mainstream. 

I usually chose designers whose work is very easily identifiable. For Jocelyn, it took me a little longer, but I can usually still identify her designs based on her aesthetic. I hope that after reading this, you will be able to pick out a Jocelyn card out of a line up as is the case for other DD candidates.

 (For the record, this card IS stamped, not digital) Next thing I knew, she was a fellow Paper Crafts Gallery Idol gal and I have loved her even more since! 

Her creative resume is so so good. She has won numerous prestigious titles and contests, published a gazillion times and I think after you read about her work, and see what she can do, you will understand why.

Tell me about yourself, how did you and your husband meet?
My husband and I met on a blind date. My mom and his dad worked together and had adjoining
offices. They would talk about their kids and decided it would be a good idea to fix us up on a
blind date. I was living in Texas at the time, and when I went to visit my mom at Thanksgiving,
she sprung it on me that a trip to a sports bar to watch a basketball game would really be a blind
date. I was annoyed but went along with it. So my mom, brothers, and their wives were on our
first date to watch the basketball game at a local sports bar. Afterwards, I told my mom that he
was nice, but it wasn’t like anything was going to happen (“I live in Texas…he lives in South

A couple of weeks later, my (now) husband sent me a letter. It was before e-mail was as
mainstream as it is now, but it was still romantic. We wrote letters back and forth for seven
months before we saw each other again. Within a week of seeing each other again, we pretty
much knew we would get married (that was 15 years ago).

Her husband Craig and daughter Leni at a historical quilt show. The quilt behind them is one Craig's grandmother made.

CC: I want it to be perfect. and if you do, digital is the way to go!

HPI: Jocelyn has turned us regular crafters into believers of the digital possibilities. She can manipulate images like no one I have ever seen. And just for the record, talking to Jocelyn is like therapy. She is very good saying and asking just the right questions to get you to talk AND feel better.

You will find that her cards are therapeutic also. The sentiments she uses convey messages of hope and promise...

What program do you use to make your digital and hybrid cards?
Photoshop Elements 11.0. I’d love to get the full-size Photoshop program, but Elements is much
cheaper. It was the best $70 I’ve spent on crafting.

Where do you find inspiration?
My biggest sources of inspiration come from online places like Pinterest, fellow designers’
blogs, general design blogs, and Etsy. I love looking at new product lines (both digital and
traditional), and I always get ideas for cards that way.
I also find inspiration in unusual places like my three-year-old’s books. My husband and I have
collected art, mostly from when we travel, and that provides me with ideas. I have a giant oil
painting of a lawn chair in my craft space. ;) (her craft area is a small corner in the dining room).

What do you do for a living? Does it influence your design?
I’m a research and evaluation consultant for state, federal, and higher ed disability and special
education programs. I was a professor and went back and forth between teaching and research
for over a decade, but when we moved to South Dakota, I decided to take the leap and become

My work and my paper crafting are pretty separate, although I do sometimes find card sketches
in my work files. The move into the digital world was influenced by my work. I travel to other
states from time to time for work, and since I always have my computer with me, I can design
any time I travel. Last summer I participated in Gallery Idol, and for one round, I was designing
one of my cards on the flight home. A couple of months ago, we were driving home from
Minneapolis (in a snow storm, no less), and I was on Photoshop make a card for a call. You get
the idea.

Did you take a digital class when you first started?
No, I’m all self-taught.

Why did you chose digital?
The main reason I started using digital elements is because I would have an idea in my head, and
I didn’t have the products to execute it. Frankly, I was frustrated because I couldn’t find stamps
and papers in the designs I wanted. Now I can usually either find an image I want or make it

Otherwise, here are my top five reasons:
1) Convenience (like I already said)
2) The huge diversity of products
3) I can tweak images, like change the color or scale of an element, to fit the project
4) The undo button is my friend J
5) I don’t have a big craft space, and I don’t have to store as much stuff

Card you are most proud of?
I’ve always been proud of my “Hey” card. The card was published in Paper Crafts Magazine,
and although it wasn’t my first published hybrid card, it represents a turning point in my mind
for when I fully committed to hybrid designs.

(comic book inspired cards have become her signature)

What are your best publishing tips?
Before I started blogging, I stalked a lot of blogs for several months. One of my favorite bloggers
was Chan Vuong, and I contacted her for some tips for getting published. She gave me some
great pointers that I would not have known at the time (e.g., make projects other than cards,
use new products, take a close-up photo of the project, etc.). She was incredibly helpful and
supportive. I’m no publishing expert. I guess I’ve had the best luck with submitting projects with
less common products.

How long do you think about a card before you are on the computer creating it?
A long time. When I get a design team assignment or a call, I typically think about the project(s)
for about a week before I do anything. What can I say? I’m a slow crafter.
Total card time (how long it takes to create a card from start to finish?
From the point I sit down to start crafting, it usually takes me about 1-3 hours to make a project.
Cards with a digital element are usually slower for me, but that could be because I’m distracted
by e-mail, Facebook, TV, etc. Traditional (non-digital) cards are typically faster, but I obsess
over things like cardstock and ink colors.

Favorite place to buy clothes?
I’m short and need short lengths. I tend to shop at Ann Taylor Loft or Banana Republic since
they’re available locally. Since I work out of my house, I don’t buy clothes as often anymore.

Funniest joke you ever heard?
I’m a big fan of Laffy Taffy jokes—the cornier the better. I hate when I buy a Laffy Taffy and
it’s a repeat joke (which of course means I’ve eaten far too many Laffy Taffies).
Here’s a pin that always makes me laugh out loud: http://pinterest.com/pin/89016530104407243/

Most admired blogger?
Oh goodness, I’ve been dreading this question because it’s like choosing between a slice of
lemon meringue pie and a piece of chocolate cake (I must be hungry). My favorite bloggers are
ones who make projects that make me wonder “why didn’t I think of that?”

Saddest thing about blogging?
Without a doubt, the saddest thing is when a fellow paper crafter passes away.

What is the secret to longevity to bloghood?
I have no idea. I suppose I should be more analytical about it, but I just try to keep my head
down and do my own thing.

How long have you been crafty?
Like most crafters, I’ve always been crafty. I used to love to draw and make sticker books.
I loved my Fashion Plates, Lillian Vernon personalized colored pencils, and metallic paint
markers. In my 20s, I dabbled in cross stitching and quilting but was pretty terrible at both. I
didn’t get into papercrafting until I was in my 30s.

Most pinned card?
I’m not completely sure since it’s hard to tell with Pinterest, but I know I had a bunch of pins on
a card from September 2011. It’s not my favorite card, but I still get weekly traffic on my blog
for this card.

The best way you can see a persons style is through a body of work. Let me show you what Jocelyn can do. These are some of my most favorites...

There is always an element of FUN in her designs.

It's difficult to discern which cards are digital and which are not. This one? Digital Hybrid!

She understands color.

You don't have to work hard to get the message.

Do you notice:
  • Her cards look like magazine ads. They are graphic, CAS, and bold. Her use of color is very conscious and purposeful and mainly because she can create just the certain perfect color that a regular stamp pad can't always touch.
  • Her cards are not SERIOUS, there is always a touch of fun whimsy to them. Even when the card IS intended to be serious, somewhere there is still fun. See the feather below? Just a little fun for an otherwise more serious card.

  • She uses nothing typical or ordinary. The fonts are fresh because they are different and computer based fonts. The possibilities in her designs are limitless.

****For fun I asked Jocelyn to show me how she creates a digital hybrid card from START to FINISH. WATCH!!!****

Whimsical Graphic Hybrid Design

In asking the community what makes Jocelyn stand out amongst the rest and what they like about her work...

JOSCELYNE CUTCHENS (PAPERCRAFTS MAGAZINE GALLERY IDOL WINNER 2012, OWNER OF BOSSY JOSCIE FLAIR): I love Jocelyn's style, it's cute but not cutesy, modern but not stark. She's not afraid to mix things up and use a punny sentiment, I absolutely love that about her. She's a whiz at piecing together digital and traditional for some of my favorite hybrid cards around. Jocelyn is also a super sweet lady with a cool name.

HEATHER CAMPBELL (PAPER CRAFTS MAGAZINE GO TO GAL 2013, GALLERY IDOL TOP GALLERY IDOL TOP 10, STAMPING ROYALTY WINNER 2012): Jocelyn has some serious style when it comes to paper crafts. She's witty and the girl must have an amazing sense of humor because it radiates from her designs. Her knowledge of digital and hybrid cards puts her in a league of her own.

LUCY ABRAMS (DESIGNER FOR HERO ARTS, STUDIO CALICO AND SIMON SAYS STAMP): Jocelyn is a ROCKSTAR!! Jocelyn has long been a favorite designer of mine. She combines style and fun effortlessly, using products in wonderfully unique and clever ways. I mean, look how cute THIS doughnut card is. Eeek!! And creating THIS neon card with digi stamps... amazing. I always love seeing Jocelyn's cards in magazines. She truly is a talented and diverse card maker with a real eye for detail.

Think you want to join this genre? 

  • Buy photoshop. One cannot do her body of work without it. It's the only way to get that crisp effect that is so typical of her work.
  • Clean it up. Jocelyn is a clean and simple gal. She flexes her design power with color and graphics 
  • Don't be shy. Her designs don't hide. The sentiments and images are in your face telling you something...and you are gonna like it! So Go Big or Go Home!

 How long have you been crafting?
Almost 7.5 years ago, I walked into a Michael’s to look at cake decorations, and I saw the
scrapbooking supplies. I was pregnant at the time, and as I strolled through the aisles, I had the
brilliant idea to make 100+ handmade birth announcements. A couple of months later, as I was
trying to match the various ribbons and patterned papers in the dark with a newborn on my lap,
the idea didn’t seem so brilliant.

I dabbled in paper crafting for gifts over the next couple of years and bought a die cutter to
cut felt for crafty projects. It wasn’t until I found a fabulous nearby stamp store (The Crafting
Cottage in Corning, NY) about five years ago, though, that I really became immersed in
stamping and paper crafting.

If I had to pick a song that represented Jocelyn to ME, it would be this one:
Don't worry Be Happy by Bobby McFerrin. Her work is fun, happy, and always conveys a positive message.

Thank you Jocelyn for taking the time to answer the questions and giving me full access to your blog Red Balloon Cards.

Where did the name of your blog come from?
It’s from the book Goodnight Moon (Goodnight light, and the red balloon). My son was just a few months old when I started blogging. He was colicky and a bad sleeper, and I think that was one of the few phrases my sleep-deprived brain could come up with. The irony is, I don’t really like balloons very much IRL.

RIC Baby Shower for Aga!

Many of you already know that our teamie at the Runway Inspired Challenge Blog Aga recently gave birth to a darling baby girl. In honor of this blessed event, our design team is having a baby shower. We were given this inspiration photo by Marc Jacobs:

Sure, polka dots would have been lovely. But a little glitter splatter makes it fun. If you want to know how I did this technique, click HERE.

The bow is a Silhouette file. I couldn't figure out where to put the sentiment, so I just printed out a repeating sentiment on my printer and popped it up on the bottom.

SO...what is up for grabs if you should win this challenge? A guest spot on RIC!!! So come and play!! And for oodles of inspiration, check out my beloved design teamies who are also excited to celebrate with the gorgeous Aga.

Aga (on maternity leave)

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Card Has to Make Sense

Picture it...March 2013, and I have to create a card for the upcoming A Blog Named Hero Anniversary Celebration and collaboration with Simon Says Stamp (say that 3 times!).

I wanted to make a card that impresses, so I set out way ahead of time and made this one:
It uses my favorite SSS die "ABSOLUTELY" and a Hero Arts/SC sentiment. A winning combination right? NOPE. Ever make a card and you only love it for like 5 minutes?

So I have finished orientation in my new job, I am exercising 4 days a week, I am losing weight, and I am feeling good. It's a great time to get back to my craft room (newly remodeled, did I mention that? photos to come just as soon as I can. But don't get your hopes up, it's not fancy or Pinterestable. Maybe when my kids are older and the space can be entirely mine). But I digress, I was speaking about cards.

I make this:

It's cool you know, for a boys card...and then I notice it. That little BENT corner on the right. Do you see it? IT WAS KILLING ME! I squinted and stared and tried to correct it with editor, but it was just staring at me like a piece of chocolate I couldn't eat.

so you know what I did, like any good cardmaker would do. I made another one...

this time I put glitter in it and stars and made it into a shaker card like it was intended to be  (I screwed that up on the previous card too). And I photographed it and felt so good about the whole thing.



I started thinking. (bad idea) What do clouds have to do with gears? NOTHING. And I had the perfect washi tape to make the clouds work. THIS ONE:

My brain got all flustered with the idea of missing out on the perfect washi tape useage. Because I forgot that I HAD some of this washi tape. Then I decided that I needed a cup of tea and some frozen berries with vanilla yogurt to help me get through the crisis. 

I came back certain I had to make ANOTHER card.

And that my friends, was the card you see on A BLOG NAMED HERO. At last, I felt at peace with myself and the universe. Check out the blog for a chance to win prizes!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

PaperCut Spring 2013 for GCD Studios

It's Here! Our first issue of PaperCuts magazine for GCD Studios has arrived showcasing the new design team. This is a FREE online magazine featuring cards, scrapbook pages, home decor, and more. I am so proud of all of us who worked so hard to bring you a really great body of work.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

RIC #34 and Jennifer Rzasa

It's time to hit the runway at Runway Inspired Challenge...

Our guest designer is Amber Kemp-Gerstal!
Aga (on maternity leave)

The winner gets a $25 GC to Ellen Hutson!

About this card:

A solid black and white card would be expected. Now we all know at RIC you have to kick it up a notch. That's just what the DT and contestants do. Soooo...I am always finding myself being pushed to create something our fearless leader Jen would be proud of. And you SERIOUSLY don't want to miss Virginia's card this time! 

The chevron patterned paper was a gift from my pal Marcy for my birthday. thanks friend.

Gold Twine is Clear and Simple Stamps, Stamp set is Hero Arts/Studio Calico

The image is a Silhouette File Design ID #8177 

And speaking of Jen...she was lovely enough to send me an original piece of artwork for my birthday which I promptly hung in the guest room :)

Isn't it beautiful? There is a little touch of gold glitter in it. Kinda feels like it was made just for me :) Thank you Jen.

Friday, April 12, 2013

ABNH Anniversary with Hero Arts and A Cleaning Must Have!

It's time to celebrate with A Blog Named Hero and this time we are showing off our projects using Hero Arts! It is no surprise that I love being on this team because I love Hero Arts! The fonts on their sentiment stamp sets, like this one called Cheer Up, are always right on trend. So go check out what the team has created today :)

To make this card I embossed the roses in the corner and then ran my Hero Arts ink pad on the surface in a random manner covering the card. Some hot pink washi, hot pink versamark ink and hot pink cardstock to mat the card and I was finished! Pretty Easy!

On another note, I MUST share with you some new cleaning products I recently purchased that has made my day to day cleaning SO much easier. I used to sweep my hard wood floors with a broom. Don't laugh. It was awful because then I would have to get the dustpan out too, it was a 2 step process and so annoying.

I have hardwood floors on my entire first floor; mopping it was just as painful. My mopping was always done Cinderella style...on my hands and knees and take hours. Sure I tried the swiffer and squeeze mops, but they never got out the crap that would be hard and stuck. I ended up scrubbing it with my hands and a cloth. Above is a picture of the family room when our floors got finished before we moved in to our home in 2011. 


I found these products:

A Hoover Cyclone Stick...It's a MUST have people!

And for mopping...

A Hoover Twin Tank Steam mop. Now I have seen these on QVC and thought they were a gimmick. I didn't believe the steam mop could clean that well. THEY DO! I mopped my entire floor in 30 minutes.  It has a triangle head to get in the corners. It even got out the crusty crap that used to take serious scrubbing before. 

So that's it for me! I have a lot more time on my hands now that cleaning is easy to help celebrate with A Blog Named Hero!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Saturday Afternoons #9

It's Saturday...which means I get to share another creation made with October Afternoon products...

 using Sidewalk Collection

I have talked a lot recently on my blog. Today, I am going to just let the card be the star of the show!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

ABNH April 2-TImeless Twine

A Blog Named Hero is having their one year anniversary! In celebration, we have month long festivities sponsored by some really wonderful companies! The first week's sponsor is Timeless Twine. They were generous enough to send me this great shade called FIRECRACKER

The twine made me feel patriotic, so out came my new Hero Arts set "Darling Sentiments" and I went right for the stars. 

The team has some great designs for you on the blog if you want to check them out and win some prizes!

RIC #33

Runway time...

Jennifer always picks the coolest photos for the Runway Inspired Challenge

To me the photo translated into TEXTURE. I especially like the tone on tone texture in the girls sweater and so I translated that with the embossing of the tag and the silhouette cut file.

The prize up for grabs is some Bossy Joscie Flair!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You just have to play along. We have some of the best players around. Always impressive and inspiring. Speaking of inspiring, check out the design team:

Thanks so much and I look forward to seeing you all on the runway!

Edited to add: the silhouette file is Design ID #38509