Creative Kiddie Crafts – Superhero Costume

My nephew is about to turn two, and he has one of the biggest imaginations I’ve ever seen in a kid his age.  Last year, his obsession was with monsters/Monsters Inc.  This year, he is all about the superheros.  Spider Man and Batman are his favourites, but he kept telling my sister that he needed an “ornange” (aka orange) shirt so that he could be “Super Matthew” – and a birthday idea was born!

supermatthewlogo

I started by designing a “Super Matthew” logo in Adobe Illustrator. The colours were more just a guideline of what it “could” look like.

I ended up going shopping for fabric after creating the logo, and I found some cool orange and mint-green/turquoise based prints that I loved so much! I also dug deep into my mom’s old fabric stash and found some vintage options that were super cool. The vision was definitely coming together in my head.

Now, keep in mind, I don’t really fancy myself a sewer, so this was a bit of a challenge for me.

supermatthewmask I decided to start with what I thought would be the easiest part of the costume – the mask.

I picked out my orange and mint green felt, some matching embroidery floss and ribbon and went to town on making a reversible mask.

I based my work on this tutorial over at slowmama.com that I came across on Pinterest. I didn’t follow it exactly, but I *really* loved the tip about using packing tape to affix the mask to the felt when cutting the pattern – that worked so much better for me than pins!

 

supermatthew_mThe next step was to begin turning the logo I made in Illustrator into a textile version with fabric. This was a bit more challenging than I anticipated, because in graphic design, there are all kinds of tools to help you make straight, precise lines. With fabric, not so much.

I created two versions of the “M” – one for a cape, and one for a t-shirt. They definitely had a bit of a “handmade charm,” but they were pretty good, I thought!  I used fabric glue, rather than sewing the pieces together.
supermatthew_giftI created the cape using this tutorial from The Southern Institute.  It was pretty easy to follow – all I did was buy a large men’s t-shirt, cut off the arms and front, add a velcro closure to the neck, and glue on my logo.  Voila – instant cape!

For the wrist cuffs, I just free-handed them using felt, and stitched on a little M.

And for the t-shirt, I found a shirt that was one size too big for my nephew (so he could wear it for a while) and glued the logo on.  I folded them all up, wrapped them in some blue tissue paper and set them into a reusable box.

supermatthew_card Finally, I created a card using various matching papers and washi tape, carrying through the “Super Matthew” theme.

I also included a Spiderman board book, and an Incredibles book – both of which he was more interested in when he opened up his present!  Oops.  I think my family was more excited about the present than my nephew was… UNTIL my niece decided to put his cape on herself, and he realized exactly what it was that was in his present.  Then, he immediately wanted to put the cape (and the shirt) on, and he ran around the house yelling “FLY!!!” … it was just about the cutest thing I’ve ever seen!

 

Personalized Digital Art: Tinker Bell Portrait in Photoshop

Screen shot 2014-07-29 at 4.29.42 PMFor family birthdays, I always try to go with a present that is personal, creative and significant.  So, when I was taking a Photoshop class in the spring, I created my final art piece with my niece’s birthday in mind.  The project was to take a personal, family photo, and transpose it into something entirely different.  My niece loves Disney, just like me, and she is especially loving Disney Fairies, and Tinker Bell in particular, lately (Just like her auntie!  Girl after my own heart)

When I received the assignment in Photoshop class, one of my first ideas was to take a picture of my niece and turn it into something whimsical and fantastical.  And what is more whimsical than Tinker Bell in a forest?!

Screen shot 2014-07-29 at 4.29.22 PMI started with this photo of my niece dressed up as Tinker Bell, posing on the front lawn.  And then I eliminated virtually everything from the picture.  Using stock photography, Photoshop Brushes, various gradients and techniques I learned throughout my photoshop class, I was able to create a forest scene with a little Nicole-fairy dancing on a magic mushroom.

I replaced the small Tinker Bell costume wings with dragon fly wings that I created myself by turning them into Photoshop brushes.  I downloaded various grass and mushroom brushes, and combined several pieces of stock photography for the final piece.

When it came time to have it printed, I had a bit of trouble finding a place that would print an extra large square photograph, so I ended up resizing it slightly to fit in an 11×17 picture frame.  I picked up a sparkly black frame at Michael’s, and had the photo printed at Walmart.

When she unwrapped her present, it took her about two seconds before she realized that it was actually herself in the picture, and then she was absolutely ecstatic.  It was so cute to see the expression on her face.

bday_present01 bday_present02

If you would like a gift like this for someone special in your life, hit the contact tab, and we can discuss the details!

Quick Creativity: ICAD

I’ve been keeping pretty busy lately between my two night school courses, my photography job and my own Superflash projects – but one of my new favourite things that I’ve started doing is “ICAD” – aka, Index Card A Day, a project by Daisy Yellow Art.  This is a great project where you design one 3×5 or 4×6 sized index card each day for 61 days (all of June and July).  There are prompts that you can follow, or you can choose to do whatever you want – the point is to take a bit of time each day to be creative!

So far, I’ve been following the prompts.  I’m not sure if I’ll stick with that through the entire project, but I’m enjoying it for right now!  Here are my first 5 cards:

ICAD #1: Prism

Day 1: Prism

ICAD #2: Circus Tent

Day 2: Circus Tent

ICAD #3: Hello my name is...

Day 3: Hello, my name is

ICAD #4: Puzzle

Day 4: Puzzle

ICAD #5: Galaxy

Day 5: Galaxy

Are you participating in this project?  Have you ever done anything like this to challenge you to be creative every day?  Leave your thoughts in the comments – and if you’re participating, leave some links to your cards too!

May The Fourth Be With You

May The Fourth Be With You by Superflash Creative Happy Sunday, and May The Fourth Be With You!  Are you a Star Wars fan? Today’s the day for you to celebrate!  Are you doing anything special to mark Star Wars day?  Dressing up as your favourite character maybe?  Or just wishing this wonderful greeting to everyone you meet?

Here’s a little art piece I created in Photoshop.  I’m thinking of using Yoda as a full resolution printable – what’s your favourite Star Wars quote?

Share in the comments below, and let me know what you’re doing to mark Star Wars Day this year!

Custom Art is always in style

Formed by God's Hands Text Art by Superflash Creative Are you looking for a special and unique gift for a special someone, but aren’t sure what to get? Custom art is always in style!  I was recently contacted with a quote, and a colour scheme in mind and asked if I could turn it into something special for a graduation present.  Over the course of a couple of days, I was able to go through a few different drafts, changing some colours, fonts and backgrounds, until I fulfilled her vision.  I don’t stop until you are satisfied!

My client was looking to print and frame the art herself, so I was able to send her a full-size digital file.  Need me to print your art for you? I can do that too!

Quote art is great for graduations, birthday cards, religious events, baby showers (framed quotes on nursery walls are always a great touch!), and so much more.  I can create art from your favourite quote, or I can help you find a quote for your event.

Do you want some custom designed art of your very own?  Click on over to the Connect Tab and get in touch for more info!

 

Free Printable: Chalkboard Easter Tags

 

 

 

It’s almost Easter and that has me thinking about Easter baskets!  Every good basket needs a tag, so I’ve created these printable chalkboard tags for you to download and share with all the little bunnies in your life! Simply download the high resolution PDF file, print, punch, tie and go!Free Printable Easter Tags from Superflash Creative

 

To download the PDF file, click HERE and hit “save as”.

Supplies needed:

  • printer
  • cardstock
  • scissors
  • ribbon or double-sided tape

Instructions:

1. For best results, print on heavy cardstock.  Print and carefully cut along the edges of each tag.

2. Use the tags by either punching through a corner and attaching with ribbon, or attaching to a treat bag with double-sided tape.  Use the tags to embellish Easter baskets, candy jars, treat bags or any other gift you’re giving this Easter – Enjoy!

9 Alternatives to the Lobster Two font

When the font Lobster Two was first released, I went crazy for it.  I loved everything about it – it’s retro, it’s clean & easy to read, and it has a lot of flair.  If you browse around this site, you’ll notice my love for this font too.  Unfortunately, it was released as a free font, and just about half the world decided that they loved it too.  Now, Lobster Two is everywhere.  It’s nearly impossible to go a day without seeing this font – dare I say, it’s becoming the new Comic Sans (not even linking to that one, because really, nothing is worse than Comic Sans, and I’m not going to proliferate it).  I think it’s time for me to get away from it – and I’d like you to consider moving on from Lobster Two as well.

Anyway.  Yes.  Lobster Two is a graphically beautiful font.  But it’s overused and it needs a chance to rest.  So today, I present to you 9 font options that are similar to Lobster Two.  Use these for a comparable feel, without being lumped in with the masses still using Lobster Two.  Most of these are free, some are free for commercial use as well.  Which is your favourite?  Are there any other fonts that you think are too overused in design today?  Leave some comments below!

Alternatives to Lobster Two, from Superflash Creative

1. Deftone Stylus 2. Fontleroy Brown 3. Grand Hotel 4. FF Jackie Block 5. Mission Script 6. Pacifico 7. Playball 8. Retroactive* 9. Sofia

* Note: this links to a demo version of this font, which does not include all the characters.  The full font is available by clicking through at the link provided.