Published Wedding Canvas

This canvas was a birthday present for a close friend. It was also published in the Paperhaus Magazine – Summer Issue – where I was, amongst others, featured as a Mixed Media Artist.


I wanted to add only some small color spots and let the texture speak out.


Love the look of this – I hope my friend does too but it looked like it 😉


It seems like I like doing canvases like this for weddings 😉 – See here is one I did for my husband’s and my wedding a year ago. That is as romantic as you get me in my work- LOL.


Here is what I used for this canvas:


Have a beautiful day





Atmen, Atmen – Jeden Tag Atmen or…new canvas

Breathing, Breathing, Everyday Breathing would be kind of the translation 😉



It is a bigger Canvas – 50 cm x 60 cm – 20 inches by 24 inches. I had lots of fun incorporating a street art paste up which is in my neighborhood forever – love the guy and the saying. Also love the texture on it- which is hard to photograph on such big scale- so here are some close-ups.



it is pretty dimensional



Initially I did this for my Hamburgendsie Exhibition but I am not really sure if I want to include it. I have to let this sit a while and maybe go back to it to decide.



Meanwhile I keep on breathing- LOL

Have a wonderful day





40 is the new 30 or…You asked


Today I am turning 40 and I am looking forward celebrating my birthday with some of my best friends here in Hamburg and my sweet friend Julie Fei Fan Balzer who is here visiting me.

A couple of weeks I had asked you which questions you always wanted to ask me and I collected those and some of the questions I got via email all the time for my F.A.Q site- and here you go -some things some of you wanted to know about me…why not post that on my birthday- LOL.

Q: Where do you live?

A: Right now in Hamburg, Germany…but I am transitioning soon to New Jersey City in the U.S.  You can see some posts about my Strolls around the neighborhood in Hamburg here:

Q: What inspires your art work ? Is it the products ? or a combination of things ?

A: I think it is indeed both. Sometimes when I get new art supplies and try them out it, it totally inspires me to some art work I would have never done. some supplies just make me want to use them over and over again and I get excited – but there are also many other things that inspire me. Often it is a stroll through my neighbor hood, there is so much that inspires me here. But also listening to a song, or reading a book. I love when I stumble over a quote or line in a book/song and it makes me think and this is often then the starting point for my work. Most of my work is very emotional as guided by the emotions and the thoughts I have while creating in my mind.


Q: Does your creative mojo ever get blocked? What do you do to unblock it?

A: It does! And now the answer is really a weird one. Sometimes it helps to just keep going…with a little “WHATEVER ” attitude and that sometimes turns out to be the best work ever…probably because I let go. But sometimes this fails too or I just feel like I cannot even do “WHATEVER” and then I just go and let it be. I do something totally different. Go out, do something I wanted to do for a long time , clean, meet friends…and when I come home mojo is usually back

Q: How do you get started with a new product and figure out all the ways to use it?

A: I analyze it a lot before I open it. I read all I can find about it, make the necessary connections to products that are the same or similar and then start testing the things that do work with the similar products first. After realizing what the unique features of that products might be, I start experimenting new techniques and check those. It is a long process but I enjoy it and makes me feel I really know the product. If I like it and feel it is a good fit to my work- I use it and I teach with it too.

Q: I would love to know how what for most of us is a hobby became a profession for you. You have mentioned that you previously worked in the legal profession. Please share how you became a professional mixed media artist.

A:Yes indeed I studied law and worked as a paralegal for 17 years. I loved my job – but in 2004 I stumbled across scrapbooking and very soon over Mixed Media Art where my heart is. In 2006 I was asked to teach my first workshops in Berlin, Germany and I have come a long way since then. It wasn’t a light-hearted or fast decision and a lot of work over many years went into this. Over the years my obsession with Mixed Media Art and my teaching opportunities grew so much, that I spent almost all my vacation days traveling to different workshop venues. So in 2011 I decided to take the plunge and become a Professional Artist. I let my readers know back then in this post: Life Changes…And Change is good.


Q: Do you have any regrets quiting your job as a paralegal and becoming a full time artist?

A: No! But read more about this: Was it worth quitting a well-paid job? Or …Insanity

Q: What were some challenges and/or unforeseen changes you faced making the jump from hobbyist scrapper/artist to pro?

A: There were two major challenges for me. One was fear – you can read all about it here: Thoughts: The key to chance is to let go of fear. The other hardest struggle for me in the beginning was that from having a very structured day and times in the law office going to a way on deciding how to organize self employment. In the beginning often times I would have a hard time starting in the morning – then work till after midnight. Now I start early in the morning and still work till midnight- LOL- so hopefully soon this gets even better .

Q: Are you teaching workshops?

A: Yes I do

In-Person Nathalie Kalbach In-Person Workshops
I teach in-person classes around the world on a variety of topics.

Online Workshops 
My Über*Media series is dedicated to techniques with different media. I also teach project-based online workshops.

QCan I subscribe to your blog?

A: Yes, absolutely. If you want an email when I post (usually every second day) you can subscribe by signing up on the right in the sidebar “Get the n*Studio Blogposts via Email” That way you never miss a post at all. Another option is to sign up through a rss reader for example Follow my blog with Bloglovin

Q: Where do I find things on your website?

A: Check out my site tour here.

Q: Where can I buy your stencils?

A: You can buy all my stencils either directly at Stencil Girl Products or at the stores which I listed extra here under My Products. I also show some projects I created with the stencils  there. So check it out 🙂

Q: What are your favorite supplies to work with?

A: There are a lot. For more detailed insights with my thoughts about My Favorite Mixed Media Essentials read here. The series is still to be updated. But here is a visual list of the supplies that I use all the time

QHow do you choose the colors that go together the best in your work?

A: I wrote a series of posts about colors and my relationship to them- called Colors are Your Friends which explains a lot how I choose colors and why for my work.

Q: How do you organize your studio?

A: ahhh tough question…there are several attempts – and probably it will be all different once I moved- but meanwhile I leave you with one of my last organization posts when I bought a letterpress cabinet.


Have a gorgeous sunny day!



I Got Glasses


This layout was published last month in the Paperhaus Magazine and I had loads of fun doing it. The picture shows me with my new glasses…I guess my eyes are getting older- snigger


I painted the background with Luminarte Silks and also stamped with bubble wrap after applying some of the Luminarte Silk on top- love the effect.  I also used my Circuit Stencil and a pencil and just traced through the stencil -I love the effect.


The faux sewing I did with the Sew Easy Tool- which I love a lot- but always forget that I have it. You basically trace the stitching down and then I use a black journaling pen and just trace along- looks pretty real and makes it easy for some small stitching areas 😉

Here is all that I used


Do you have glasses? I actually like mine- although it took me a long time getting used to them and I still get a bit dizzy when the light changes.




There Is No One Way To Art

There is no one way to art. There is many ways. There is YOUR way. – Robert Ryman

I love this quote and it makes me fall even more in Love with Robert Ryman and his approach to art.


Lot’s of fun playing with my What’s The Point Stencil and some silhouettes I cut.


I had cut out the silhouettes and played with the mask and the stencil which I got out of the two figures. I layered the stencil over too and sprayed with Liquitex Spray Paints over it -I like the effect.


For the paper I used some Distress Inks – I just love how the Distress inks make every color pop.


Here is what I used for the page:


Stroll Through the Hood


A lot of times I get asked what inspires me. And one of my key answers is always “a stroll through the hood”. It might be street art, it might be thoughts or feelings connected with certain sights, it might be stuff I find to buy…in one way or the other you might find the photos, the thoughts, the feelings, the colors or anything from those strolls in my art journal, a mixed media project or a scrapbooking layout.

I would love to show you once a month what inspired me while strolling through my neighborhood. I hope you like the little insights into my daily life where I live (at the moment Hamburg, Germany). This is also a wonderful way for me to remind myself on the inspiring things in the hood. Maybe you get inspired by those posts and even invite ME to a stroll in YOUR hood – feel free to grab the logo and leave a comment for me on the post and share!




Love this simple cute one -it would be a perfect postcard- and…the wall does indeed look like this- pink patina 😉



Speaking of pink….hello…it is usually not my color- but ohh love. This is from the inside of my favorite flower store …you get a bunch of flowers- no big stuff around, 5 Bucks, and you are out. They open Wednesday till they sold all flowers…sometimes Friday your are out of luck. Then they are on their way to Holland again to stock up 😉  Awesome awesome- I know I will for sure miss this one.



I love this in a little alley in the hood. I also love the background- I am not a brown color person- but this is intriguing with ll the dots and little hints of red.



And how can you pass up this photo-op – in a site street around the corner – so much fun with Andreas Muhme– we did another photo shoot, this time outside and had fun strolling around looking for places.



And another pussy cat…again love the simplicity of it- and yet so cool!



This is the outside of a kindergarten – loooveee the colors! So much fun!



Especially since I know we move I walk around my neighborhood with more open eyes than ever and explore little alley ways too. It is a lot of fun.

Hope you liked it- see you next month in the hood ;)





Whatevers Round 2…or You didn’t really think it is over, did you?

Two Button

Nahhhh – it is not over….there are so many more Whatevers out there…they need a story…and seriously it was way too much fun! We so enjoyed each other’s story and also the amazing stories of those of you who participated…see….

So welcome our friends Carmen Sanchez and Martha Richardson who will join us!


We will start with the first Whatever in Round 2 on July 15, 2013 – we hope you will join us then. And till then in case you don’t know how the Whatevers work …here is short summary 🙂

The Whatevers – is a creative story telling project founded by Cat ScanlonVicki Chrisman and me in 2012.

Have you ever been to a flea market and then had this weird sensation of those faces from long ago times looking at you? Sometimes you find a little trace of the history on those photos, the name and city of the photographer, a scribbled note or year on the back of the photo…but that is it. There is no more ….Really…no more? They are forgotten as long as they have no name and no story…

Watch our intro video from 2012:

We are happy to have Carmen and Martha joining us.

What all five of us have in common (besides enjoying each others company and having a blast)  is the love for vintage photos, whether it be family treasures or sometimes found ones.

Here is how it works

  • Vicki, Cat, Cuchy (Carmen), Martha and I and I have made a one-year commitment to each other and picked twelve photos with Whatevers whom we will give a story.
  • Every month – if possible always on the 15th –  each of us will do a post with an individual story that goes along for us with the same photo.
  • If you want you can play along and we will have the photo for you to download and show us your version of The Whatevers. The photo will be posted at the end of our blogposts- not on Facebook!
  • There is no rules to the story itself- it can be funny, sad, uplifting, breathtaking- WHATEVER
  • There is no rules on the length or the form of the story– it can be a short sentence, an essay, a poem or a soap opera – WHATEVER
  • There is no rules on the artform you choose – it can be a scrapbook layout, an altered art project, an art journal page – WHATEVER
  • Here is a rule though: if you take the photo you have to link back to us and show us your story.
  • These pictures are from our personal stash and are for personal use for you only! If you want to use them for a publication whether a book or magazine in print or digital form please ask for permission!
  • If you want to participate we’ll have a linky list for each Whatever Post.
  • You can also join our The Whatevers -Facebook Page

See you on July 15 with the first Whatever

Huge Hugs




I Am Enough Art Journal Page


I played a bit around in my art journal and I love especially how the left page turned out . Sometimes it is good to just play because accidentally you might find a fun new way for a background – like I did 🙂


I also got a new color combo crush…you better get used to it- hehehe- I might use it again 😉


Have a creative day today 🙂


Closed Doors …or Word Emesis

My art journal is not only my technique-play book, it is also my way to express feelings and often an outlet for emotions. I think art is an amazing therapist- LOL- so much cheaper actually when a real one 😉 This page was done after I was REALLY upset a couple of weeks ago – LOL- doesn’t happen to often- but hey…can happen 😉


Lot’s of Liquitex Spray Paint over Stencils on here and then I played with the Liquitex Paint Markers-I love how you can paint with them over magazine pages, use them for writing or sketching and to blend areas in.


I wanted a grungy look here ….I guess I archived it. Actually I want this page as a wall of my studio- that would be cool- LOL.


If you art journal would you agree that it helps you deal with emotional stress better?


have a beautiful day


Heimathafen or…Hamburg*End(si)e Exhibition Canvas


Another canvas for my exhibition in August here in Hamburg. This one is actually 16″ by 24″ big (40cm x 60cm) . I figured out that for canvases in that big size I need an easel but I guess for the time being here in Hamburg I might not invest in one or maybe I should…mmmh…mhhh – LOL…never shy of an excuse to go to the art supply store 😉 .


It is a collage with acrylic paints, acrylic inks and acrylic markers . It was a slow process on this canvas …It moved several times in the apartment so I could just look at it because I wasn’t too happy in the beginning and needed to figure out what it was. It was the ship on the right that made me crazy…something was badly off, but now it is done. I really like the colors- and I know they are not very usual for me .


I am sure you got it figured out, this is the Hamburg harbor – a bit part of our city, and the title is home port. Now working on the next canvas which is even bigger…let’s see how this goes- LOL

Have a wonderful day