It's been a few weeks since we had a Wednesday Wonder what with Thanksgiving and some other job-related events taking me away from home. Today's Wonder has been waiting patiently, though, bless her heart! Somehow I managed to not discover her country of origin. (However, I suspect it's Germany because (1) she currently lives there; and (2) her favorite swears sound like they're in German.)
A regular Sherlock, I am....
Ladies, may I present the lovely Vanessa Menhorn:
And here is Vanessa's sweet baby Alyssa:
Two cutie-patooties under the same roof - you know the resident Daddy-Man doesn't stand a chance!
If you haven't been exposed to Vanessa's cards, you're in for a treat. She makes wonderful, classy little pieces of art - receiving a card from Vanessa might cause one to purchase a frame so it could be hung on the wall for everyone's visual enjoyment. Case in point:
If I received a card like this, I'd have it mounted and framed and add it to my annual Christmas decorations.
Vanessa has not been published, nor does she belong to a design team, but I say it's only a matter of time. She's apparently only been making cards for a few months, so watch out, world! Vanessa has won several online challenges: Hero Arts Blog: ATC (digital winner), Be Inspired (Fresh Face winner), Learning (HM), and Holiday Accessory (1st Place); Paper Crafts: Gallery Idol 2009 Top 15, Gallery Idol 2009 Top 20 and World Card Making Day Gallery Winner; Moxie Fab World: Not Your Regular Ruffles (winner), One Last Nod to Fall (HM), A Hoot or Two for You (winner), Stretch Your Holiday Style (HM), Gradient is Radiant (winner); Get Sketchy Top 5 (winner); Papertrey Ink: Guest Star Stamper (HM), Guest Star Stamper (HM), Guest Star Stamper (winner); and Caardvarks: Take a Bow (HM). And if that's not enough, one of her cards was selected for a 2 Peas newsletter, AND she was was a featured artist at Caardvarks World Card Making Day and Moxie Fab world's World Tour of Card Making.
And now my fingers hurt from all that typing and copy-n-pasting of links!
Here's my favorite, arguably, of Vanessa's cards:
I just love the simple elegance that's coming out of this rustic card. I love the delicate stamping on the patterned paper (she likes to do that, I've noticed) with the lightly inked edges. And her stitching is terrific. (On a side note, don't you just love her signature digital stamp?)
Vanessa was able to send me some pictures of her craft space with a few comments:
"I occupy a corner of our bedroom! You can see our bed and a bit of my husband`s Kung Fu weapons. Your interview was the reason I organized my space. :~) Now I am quite happy about it! I labeled all my drawers, sorted my stash and moved an old sideboard to my corner. When I started cardmaking a few months ago, I was sitting / crawling on the floor of my girl`s room in front of her closet where I had my crafting supplies, with her lying next to me on her toddler blanket! Wow, my space improved a lot!"
I'm so pleased that I was able to motivate someone to snaz up her space! (I feel very pure and noble and good... and less guilty about the present state of squalor in my own craft space.) Did y'all catch that part about how she started making cards a few months ago?!
I believe that I have each and every one of the tools and materials she used to make this white wonder of a card (with the exception of that lovely pearl button). However, trust me when I say you will never see me produce anything anywhere near this gorgeous. My sensibilities are simply not that tasteful!
Is this a cool card or what? It's pure Vanessa: deceptively simple with a fresh composition-disposition and an eye for details. And classy as all get-out....
Please join me in lifting your Diet-Cokes to Vanessa Menhorn, the Belle of the Butterflies and an exceptional card artiste!
1. Do you pre-sketch a design or do you
just leap out of the gate? How long does it usually take you to
make a page? A card?
Sometimes when I have an idea for a card, I try to sketch it, but it never turns out like I intended it to! Most of my cards just "happen." It takes from 30 minutes to 3 hours to finish a card (that sometimes depends on my girl's nap times).
2. How many, on average, pages per week
do you make? Cards?
I usually create about 5 cards a week (all naptime crafted).
I wish I could do that. Unfortunately, I'm afraid I would actually nap during the nap times.
3. How has your process evolved to make
you a leaner, meaner crafting machine? (In other words, what are some
lessons you've learned or tips you can share that allow you to
make better and faster design choices?)
I've learned so much through all the challenges! They make me try new things and keep my creative juices flowing.
4. What's your stand-by, FAST dinner
solution for those times when you really want to get to your scrap
space ASAP (or stay ALAP)?
I want my girl to eat a lot of healthy stuff, so I prepare/precook our dinner in the afternoons so I can start crafting as soon as she is asleep. Love cooking, too, so it's no burden for me. :~)
Ah... another well-adjusted super-mommy. I envy from afar....
5. If you were stranded on an island
that had a billion supplies but NO tools, what ten TOOLS would you HAVE
to have? (All the stamps in the world are available, so you don't
need to list them as one of your tools. EX: we've got all the
embroidery floss in the world, but you're going to have to bring your own
needle if you want to use any of it!)
I would bring my sewing machine, paper trimmer, scissors, Cuttlebug, Nesties, heat gun, ScorePal, border punches, computer and printer (for the great digital kits).
6. If you were still on that island,
what kind of noise would you want (if any) in the background? List as
many as five different favorite musical artists.
I love to listen to the Harry Potter audio books read by Stephen Fry while crafting and my favourite music is punk rock, but on an island I would probably listen to songs like "Somewhere over the rainbow" by Israel Kamakawiwo`ole or "I'm Yours" by Jason Mraz.
Punk rock, eh? I think I was correct about that devilish look in your eye.... Long live The Clash, btw!
7. If you could have anything you wanted, (concerning scrapping or stamping) what would it be?
A 48-hour day; my own, big crafting room with great storage possibilities; being on a design team; having a craft shop around the corner holding all the newest supplies that only cost as much as you have to pay in the States.
8. What about your style/artistry are you least satisfied with?
I have problems with adhering my layers straightly, (my dear husband likes to point out that something is not straight!) and I would love to be able to create beautiful scrapbook pages to do all the cute photos of my daughter justice.
I suspect that your scrapbook pages look dandy!
9. What cameras have you tried, which one is your favorite, and why? (You can shorten this to just the one you're using now if you like.)
I have a Canon Powershot A720 IS and it's ok for me....
10. What's the word or phrase that comes
to your lips when you mess up while creating?
("Unprintable" is definitely an option!)
Scheisse! Verdammt! (in this order)
That looks German - or something in the Nordic family at the very least!
11. Give us a quick description of your pets.
Tiger Lilly Lionheart, called Lilly. She is a grey striped, incredibly fluffy cat. If she were human she would go shopping all the time, buying the newest clothes and checking her make-up all day long.
12. Give us a quick description of your
I am a stay at home mum at the moment but will try to return to work next summer. I had an exciting job in a bank ;~)
13. Give us a quick description of your family.
My husband is working as a media designer (hence his eye for the straight positioning) and is practicing traditional Kung-Fu four times a week (that's when I do crafting in the evenings). My cute daughter, Alyssa, is 15 months old, loves to look through books with her mummy, has a good sense of humor already, and loves to hug everything and everybody.
14. Got a fun or little known fact about
yourself you d like to share?
No, I am too boring!
Oooooooh, no you're not. Let me reference again that mischievous grin of yours - that smile belongs to a lively personality!
15. What's your favorite stamping
I love to use distress inks and Versamark inks.
You can see more of Vanessa's creations at her blog, Wings of a Butterfly, and her Flickr photostream.
What a delight to know more about Vanessa! As soon as she came to the HA blog, I knew she is UBER talented!! Thanks for the FUN interview, Deborah!
Posted by: Virginia L. | December 2, 2009 at 09:32 AM
Hi, Deborah and Vanessa! Loved the interview! I had been a fan of Vanessa's cards. I especially adore the china blue butterfly on that Happy Birthday card! :-)
Posted by: Anne Gaal | December 2, 2009 at 09:47 AM
I loved hearing all about Vanessa! Her cards are all wonderful - some of my favorites are the same ones you highlighted here. She certainly has "the touch"!
Posted by: Lin | December 2, 2009 at 10:34 AM
Vanessa is most certainly a very talented lady, and I have really enjoyed her lovely creations on Flickr. It was great seeing some of her beautiful work high-lighted here, and getting to know her better. She is indeed a "wonder". Great interview Deborah!
Posted by: Marilyn Valadez | December 2, 2009 at 12:07 PM
Fantastic interview with Vanessa! I loved finding out a little more about her and her beautiful cards!
Posted by: Susan McRae | December 2, 2009 at 12:14 PM
A few months ago???? Seriously? Such beautiful cards - I can hardly wait to see more. And a Jason Mraz fan to boot. Awesome!
Posted by: Jackie | December 2, 2009 at 12:36 PM
What a fantastic interview Deborah with the oh so talented Vanessa...she really knows how to inspire us all :)
Posted by: Tracey | December 2, 2009 at 01:11 PM
I too have wondered if Vanessa is German-born - her English is just too good! Great interview Deborah, you are again unbeatable in your humor and Vanessa certainly has an eye for style and design! Really enjoyed this!
Posted by: Jacqueline | December 2, 2009 at 01:47 PM
Great interview with a true Wonder! Love Vanessa's style and I love that she loves Iz!
Posted by: donna mikasa | December 2, 2009 at 02:02 PM
Awesome interview with Vanessa.... I love her work and regularly use her for inspiration when I get stumped.... Thanks for interviewing her...
Posted by: Dawn T | December 2, 2009 at 02:15 PM
Wow, what wonderful inspiration! Vanessa is a doll and so incredibly talented. Thanks for putting the spotlight on her, such a fun interview!
Posted by: Nancy K | December 2, 2009 at 03:16 PM
Vanessa's cards are so beautiful, so fun getting to know her a little better! Thanks, Deborah!
Posted by: Anette H | December 2, 2009 at 03:27 PM
such a treat to read about Vanessa! she is such an amazing artist and soooo sweet!! thanks for the wonderful interview as always, Deborah!!
Posted by: Alice W. | December 2, 2009 at 03:58 PM
Fabulous interview Deborah, love Vanessa's work she is so stylish with her designs.
Posted by: cathy a | December 2, 2009 at 04:38 PM
Vanessa is definitely a wonder, love all of her fabulous work!
Posted by: Tiffany E. | December 2, 2009 at 06:01 PM
Another awesome interview and Vanessa's work is always beautiful! Glad you highlighted her work!
Posted by: stampersuzz | December 2, 2009 at 06:43 PM
VAnessa is such a wonderful talent I am constantly in awe of her creations and all that she accomplishes!!!! So proud of you Vanessa big congrats and hugs,KATHY
Posted by: kathy racoosin | December 2, 2009 at 11:38 PM
Great interview! I love Vanessa's work! :)
Posted by: Winter | December 3, 2009 at 10:32 AM
Great interview... I always wondered how to spell Scheisse.... now I know.
Posted by: Arlene | December 5, 2009 at 12:16 PM
Great interview! I am a fan of Vanessa's beautiful creations!!!
Posted by: Jill | December 6, 2009 at 01:42 PM
Great interview - I just love Vanessa's cards. They are all a real treat.
Posted by: Pia | December 7, 2009 at 01:42 PM