I'm currently working on a new series about motherhood. I'm in the preparatory stages of the series. I've been drawing, thinking, planning, and experimenting. Most of what I've made are little scribbles and copious notes. But I have worked on a few more composed pieces and I thought I'd share those with you today. These are acrylic paintings. Most also include collage. As you know, I generally make all of my own collage papers. And some of the pieces also include some pencil/crayon additions. Take a peek: You can watch this short process video to see the last two pieces... Read more →

The Artful Holiday class has just wrapped up week three of fantastic art projects, art techniques, and art ideas for you! On Monday, I demonstrated how pochoir printing works: Julie said, "Cool project! Thanks for showing the many different suggestions for framing and backgrounds." On Tuesday, Tori Weyers demonstrated how she takes ordinary sticks she finds in a park near her home and elevates them to art. Stephanie said, "Thank you for the great class! I love sticks and have fabric wrapped them, but have never painted them… yet!!!" On Wednesday I, once again, shared TWO mash-up projects! Every Wednesday,... Read more →

We had such a great Book Club meeting last week. We discussed The Sketchbook Idea Generator by Jennifer Orkin Lewis. It's not my favorite book, but I shared how I made it work for me. Watch the replay below: Here are two of my favorite little "sketches" I made while working through the book: And here's the demo piece I created during Book Club: There are some fabulous versions that other people did, which are now posted in the Balzer Designs Students Facebook Group. You should check them out! The next Book Club is on September 14, 2022 at 12:15pm... Read more →

Fun fact: Before I was a painter or a collagist or even a scrapbooker, there were beads. In fact, I stumbled into A.C. Moore for the first time because I was looking for beads. Here's a peek at just a few of the pieces I've made over the years -- a lot of the photography is old and not great quality: Bead weaving and bead embroidery remain activities that I really enjoy doing. It's extremely relaxing and meditative work. Plus beads are small and make a perfect travel art project. Today, as part of my ongoing series of basic art... Read more →

The Artful Holiday class is going strong with lots of fabulous projects, techniques, and ideas for you! On Monday, I shared how to print and construct this paper vase: Kim said, "Such an adorable project, at first I didn’t think I’d love it….BUT I DO!!!! The cork one was quite stunning!" On Tuesday, Sarah Matthews shared how to make your own stamp, print your custom patterned paper, and then turn it into this fabulous ornament: Vicki said, "I loved this class and made one with 3/4 in squares! Addicted ❤️" On Wednesday, I shared TWO mash-up projects. Every Wednesday, I... Read more →

Raise your hand if you're an art supply hoarder. I hope you find this post from November 21, 2018 useful. ---- I took a class this past weekend. The instructor had us do an exercise that focused on speed. When we were done she said, "Even if you don't like it, what have you lost? 5 minutes?!" The woman in front of me turned to her friend and said, "And wasted your fabric." That comment hit me like a silver bullet. I am an unabashed hoarder. I get how hard it is to let go of supplies you paid lots... Read more →

This is a re-post of a blog from October 14, 2020. It's two years old, but these are absolutely my ride-or-die go-to supplies still. Enjoy! ---- Here is a quick guide to some of my favorite art supplies. I limited myself to just a few choices in each category. My true "can't live withouts." You can find a much longer list HERE. Art Journaling No string China Marker/Grease Pencil Catalyst Brushes Liquitex Gesso Pilot Multiball Pen Stamp Carving Speedy Carve Speedball Carving Tools Permapaque Markers (for marking the block) Black Archival Ink Pad & Reinker Carve Stamp Play Book Mixed... Read more →

Hey friends! I'm taking the rest of the week off from the blog. Steve is out of town and I've got my hands full. While I'm busy chasing down a toddler whose main ambition in life seems to be to run away from me, I thought I'd share some great content from the archives. This post originally appeared on the blog on May 13, 2016. ------- I often post art journal pages that I've created or that other people have created and say something like, "I hope you see something that inspires you." But today it occurred to me: What... Read more →

The Artful Holiday class is off to a fabulous start! On Monday, I shared how to make these super fun fabric earrings: Sharyn said, "Easy to follow and thorough instructions. I BELIEVE I can do this. I like that I can use my own stuff or paint a new design. Beautiful result! Great start to this series. Thanks." And I was thrilled when Laura posted her version of the earrings in the Balzer Designs Students Facebook Group: And Marybeth posted hers on instagram: As a teacher, there's nothing better than seeing the work you inspire! On Tuesday, Carolyn Dube taught... Read more →

Today's episode of The Adventures in Arting podcast was fueled by an email I get almost every single day: "I can't access my class." It's a statement that makes me crazy because there's no way for me to help the emailer. The questions I usually write back with are: What's the class? What's the specific issue with accessing the class? Is there an error message you're seeing? My frustration with this unspecific way of asking for help, led me to think about WHY asking specific questions is so important -- not only in getting technical support, but also in helping... Read more →