Sunday, 22 May 2011

Finally a Ranger Uni Update

Whether its jetlag or just struck down with a cold that is going around here, flat out organising our Unmasked Retreat (update coming later this week)  I have finally found a little time snuggled up here with my blankie to try and finally blog about my awesome experience I was fortunate to be apart  – maybe you should grab a cuppa and a blankie yourselves as this is going to be a long post.  I don’t really know where to begin to tell you all about my adventures with Ranger U.  I met so many amazing people and the whole experience was one never to forget.  If you ever get the chance or opportunity to attend I can thoroughly recommend it.  My mind is still boggling with all the information and really wish I had another week off work that I could just play and experiment with all the techniques we learnt.  But I will slowly share these with you when I get the chance and a break from the 9-5 job to experiment some more.
Im not the best or relaxed plane traveller
but was in awe of the view from the plane crossing from LA to New York.
Not as appreciative of the captain telling all air hostesses to buckle in a number of times...
I have read many of the other attendees blog posts so I am going to pinch a few pics of theirs and add a few of mine and I hope you can go on a little blog hop with me to get a little glimpse of how fortunate I was to have had this opportunity.

I arrived a day earlier than needed so that I could do the necessary outlet shopping that was required, mostly for my daughters and my mum.  It wouldn’t be a trip to the US without coming back with ANOTHER pair of converse for the girls – and so that was one of the first stops.
On Thursday my new roomie arrived finally after lots of flights being delayed due to tornados across the east coast.  Jenn is from The Scrapbox Canada and was lovely enough to offer to share with me to save costs.  It was great even sleeping on a sofa bed.  Eh???
Anyway on Friday the fun began and we arrived at Ranger.  I was sooo excited to catch up again with Christy Tomlinson (The She Art goddess) and we sat near each other with an other Aussie in between us Chad from Stamp-it (Distributers in WA), probably good as im sure Christy and I wouldn’t have got as much done as we did if we were next to each other…..  Christy has written a great rundown on the weekend and you can read her version HERE but I just want to highlight a little something I found on her blog – We had a lot of laughs too.. so many mishaps (mostly from Melissa.. holy cow that girl can make a mess out of anything! Lol) But SO FUN!  Oh Ok I was the aussie version of a silver tin man at one stage…. I really didn’t hear Tim say don’t squeeze the dabber tube – and I just happened to have the silver one…… oh dear!!!!

Day 1Tim began with chatting about all the products we would learn about and then went on a tour of the factory.  Can you believe they MAKE all the ranger products on site.  Did you hear me…. On site – not china or anything – but right there in New Jersey.   It was unbelievable.  Obviously we weren’t allowed to take any photographs but they have chemists of their own and they test every batch etc to make sure we all get the absolutely best product we can get.  It was totally mind boggling and awesome to see the whole process.  It certainly makes you look at the old ink pad in a new light when you see for yourself just how many hands have touch it to get the completed product.
Anyway we got back to the class room and learn all about Perfect pearls.  OMGosh these are going to become my new best friend.  I only had a couple of these of my own before Ranger and I soon found out you don’t blow in the lid to clean it – you will look lovely covered in fine pearl shimmered dust – which I did.  But after the next 10 tags I soon learn that these little jars of powder are jars of magic and the techniques I learnt I just can’t wait to play with on other projects.  SO DANG COOL as Christy would say, regularly…..
In the Afternoon,  we used the MeltArt Melting Pot with UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel) – WOW WOW WOW, We used it with shrink plastic, image transfers, faux soldering and making our own moulds etc.  This is something I can’t wait to get a hold of – CHAD im waiting for my pot to arrive.
Melting Pot (photo taken by Christy)
That night we had a BBQ dinner and met some of the amazing Ranger staff and got to know the other attendees a little better.
Ranger U, an amazing company
Techniques upon techniques - mind overload...

Day 2
This morning we were fortunate to have the gorgeous Claudine Helmuth teach us.  She has a paint and stamp line with Ranger. She showed us many new techniques! Things you can do with Gesso, Multi Mediums, Extra Time.. and her paints go on like butter.. oh so smooth and rich. Just like the expensive brands..  AND the cool things you can do with her StickyBack Canvas! Make your own fabric with image transfer! – mind is boggling all over again especially wanting to put some of our next designs onto fabric….. oh I really wish there were more hours in the day
Today was square pizza day and as Tim recommended, the Buffalo Chicken pizza was totally awesome – yes AWESOME it sounds a very American word but desicribes things just so perfectly…..AWESOME

Square pizza (Photo by Christy)
After lunch Tim was back with us teaching us all things DISTRESSED – I love those ink pads but now I have a new love distressed stains and stikles and distressed embossing powder – I love them all.
Dinner was great Chad and I went out for dinner with the boys to a little local pub – Barnacles Bills and had the bestest hamburger and a little sight seeing around Jersey Shore.  I even dipped my toes in the water….  It actually felt great on my swollen ankles… don’t know whay travelling does it to me but my ankles need replacing afer flying and it happens EVERY time…. Someone tell me a cure please!!!!

Day 3
Last day came all to fast and I really didn’t want it to end.  I really could have taken a whole week of this as there is still soooo much more to learn.
Today was all about Rangers other products, Ranger’s Adirondack Line – ink pads and Color Wash Sprays – WOW these colours are unreal, I love Glimmer Mists but the colours of these are so rich – I think I have found a new love and these will be replacing the others very quickly I think.
The Aftersoon was spent learning all about alcohol inks and paint dabbers.  The effect you can get with alcohol inks are unbelieveable and definitely need practice and experimenting but it was again mind boggling.  Tim is just way to talented for one person but he is so encouraging and I think every attendee will be leaving going back and playing for the next month and experimenting.  I will have to wait a couple of weeks to catch up on everything that has to be done at work before I have that luxury but I can tell you it was an experience necver to be forgotten and information that can only be built on and hopefully I will be able to share with you all some of the things I have learning in upcoming projects and classes.

One of the things that happens at the end of Ranger is that we are congratulations receive our certificates that endorse us as Ranger Educators, which means we are endorsed by Ranger to teach you about these products and share some of the techniques we have learnt over these few days.  Tim has always been a fantastic support to me with classes and I can’t wait to support him and Ranger in the future promoting their products as much as I can.  It will be exciting to start to put some of the techniques I have learnt into practice and share with you.
The most fun one can have in three days.
Thanks so much for sharing all your knowledge with us Tim,
and Mario, what would i have done without the kettle corn.......

That night before saying goodbye a few of us Jenn (my room mate), Chad, Rosa, Mark and Christy went out for dinner but not before visiting the Jersey Shore for a little frolick on the beach….
The infamous Jersey Shore.
thanks jen, chad, christy, mark and rosa for a fun evening
Can't wait to catch up with you all again

New Friends, new knowledge and techniques and I can’t wait for some spare time put these into practice.

Thank you to all my new friends that I met(will be keeping up with your venture in cyberspace), to Tim and Claudine for so opening sharing your knowledge, Mario for keeping us all so well fed and of course the HUGE bag of kettle corn that kept me going all day on the Sunday – gosh I love that stuff and please please please if any of you are at the next CHA show come by and say hello – it will be great to catch up with you again.

1 comment:

Cassandra said...

Wow Mel! Sounds like a blast and definately unforgetable experience! I can't wait for you to show me everything you learnt lol (jk). And can't wait to hear about Unmasked :o) *hugz*