Tuesday, January 27, 2015


Digging out from the storm....and in between, working in my art journal....

Art Journal
The View from my Window
This is in my 9 x 12 Dylusions journal. 
 Inspired by the snow storm.  

Winter at Night
Acrylics, tape, molding paste, stamps, glitter

This is just a different view of winter.  Perhaps these paintings illustrate the two sides of my Gemini personality.....Unfortunately, you can't see the sparkles in the trees and in the snow because the camera doesn't capture it.  The molding paste pattern is my favorite part of this.  A colleague of mine at work loves to bake and at Christmas, she gave us all a little box with cookies in it and the box had this cut-out cardboard piece that was part of the box.  I saved it and used it for the pattern you see in the snow.  Pretty cool.  

Saturday, January 24, 2015

De-stressing and Distressing!

I've come to a conclusion this week....and my feelings were re-affirmed by a friend I took a workshop with quite a few years ago now...taking classes stresses me out!  She was feeling the same way.  Perhaps having a weekly challenge is too much.  And then there's the steady stream of seeing the photos of the art others in the challenge have done...now that's intimidating.

I thought if I got on board from the get-go with the new Documented Life Project for 2015, that I would be excited and create some great art.  What I've discovered is that the stress starts to build waiting for the weekly "prompt" on Saturday morning...and then trying to get the art done between other activities on my weekend...like grocery shopping, shoveling snow and ....well you know how the weekends go if you're a working person.  That being said....I spent a snowy day today working on some samples of prayer flags as I will be showing others how to make them and I've never actually made one myself!  I did have fun.  The flags will be created by everyone from children to seniors and not everyone feels they are "artsy"....but I hope to get lots of people on board.  I had fun doing this today and I made mistakes in the process, so it's good to figure some of those things out before you show others.  Here are my two samples:

Prayer Flag
Acrylics, Beads, Buttons, Felt
This is the 1st one I made.  I started with just a pencil sketch.
I know it's hard to see the lines, but I had to figure out my layout.  I think this would be easy for anyone to do and adapt to their own design.  

I started to lay in some color. I painted over the trees because I knew it would be easier to add them later with a black Sharpie. Same with the word PROTECT at the bottom.  And I like the word Family in the rooftop window. I did "Family" different in the sketch than in the finished piece.  I added beads to the trees and a button doorknob just to illustrate some of the things everyone could do and add to their work.
Here is the other flag:

Stencil, Inks, Acrylics, Paint Pens
on Muslin, backed with Batik print

Painting on muslin is not difficult as long as you iron it to freezer paper first.  That way it stays firm and smooth.  I used a stencil for the tree with an ink spray.  I used an ink dropper in different colors for the circles. The green at the bottom I painted with acrylics.  The piece in the middle of the bottom is a separate piece of muslin I stitched on.  I drizzled inks on this piece as well.
On one of the branches, very small, you can see I wrote the word "joy".  This was so much fun!  In a way, I guess I did the DLP challenge...which was using words on your journal pages...I just didn't do this art in my journal.

Monday, January 19, 2015

DLP - Georgia O'Keefe Quote

"I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way." 
---Georgia OKeefe

College - Deli paper Gelliart prints
Magazine words/photos/pen
9 x 12 Art Journal
I'm going to start by saying I have mixed feelings about these pages.  My first thought was to start with dark colors at the bottom and work my way up the pages.  I cut out circles for the right-hand page (there is one large circle as the base) and I found a page in Conde Nast Traveler that was a photograph of lots of different foods, flowers...all edible things and all in round bowls.  There was something about their colors and shapes that told me I had to use them on the page in addition to the deli print circles. The letters that spell out COLORS are from Coastal Living magazine and the two O's are buckets of paint....

The opposite page was again the deli prints and magazine words but I cut the shapes into squares and rectangles and put Georgia O'Keefe's quote up in the left-hand corner.
I definitely love lots of color in my art...why have all of the luscious art supplies if you don't use the colors!  Takes me back to my first large box of Crayola crayons...maybe there were 64 colors in the box....all pointed and fresh and they smelled good too....I still love them.  
A little story....when I was at the end of my senior year in high school, I was in the hospital with appendicitis.  I don't know how this came about...can't recall, but I had a box of crayons and a coloring book so when anyone came to visit me....I had them color and sign a page in the coloring book.  I kept that book for many years....and ultimately tossed it.  I so regret throwing it away now!

There's something about being part of a class, whether it's online or in a classroom that always challenge me.  It just adds a little layer of stress.  The quote for this DLP challenge is really wonderful and perhaps if I'd spent more time thinking about it, I would taken the art deeper rather taking it at surface value and literally just putting "colors" on the page.  Doing my art on weekends which is really the only time I have....my window to devote to art feels small.
Perhaps I'll consider doing more journaling on this quote and see what my outcome might be.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

DLP - 2015 Self-Portrait

How we see ourselves in art, is not necessarily as the traditional self-portrait. Think about some of those Picasso drawings of faces.  On the page opposite the post below, I created this page which I am calling my self-portrait.  I don't know if everyone who knows me will agree that this is me....but there are definitely elements of my personality in this painting.  It was fun to do and I love all of the colors captured in these two paintings.  If you were to do a self-portrait of yourself....not as the traditional face....what would your page look like?

And some close-ups....

DLP - 2015, Book Paper

If you're familiar with the Documented Life Project - 2015, below is my art using book paper, which is the 1st challenge prompt for this year.  It is also a place to put some goals for the year.  Here is my finished journal page...lots of color....I just can't stop.  My goals don't really change...they're always my weaknesses that I need to work on...


The first step in the process, glueing down some paper....I used newsprint, a grocery list, some deli printed paper, magazine text.  The "love life" is a pillow in the Pottery Barn catalog.  There is also a receipt from a store in New Orleans I visited a couple of years ago!  After glueing alll of the book paper,  I covered the entire page with clear gesso to protect the paper for the next step.

Next came some paint.....blue is always my first "go to" color....

I could have stopped right here.....but I didn't.
And a close-up of some camels I saw in a recent Sunday NY Times....they were just too fun to pass up.  

Thursday, January 1, 2015


Art Journal
Water Color Crayons/Ink

This is my first little drawing of the new year, at 8:27 am EST.  I love the richness of water color crayons.  First, I just took a black permanent pen and did the sketch; then I added the color and, lastly, took my paintbrush and moved the color around.  
I stayed up past midnight to see the new year in.  I have yet to concede and go to bed before that.  After all, another year is gone that we'll never have again.  I think about how fortunate I am to have a home in a wonderful place and how important that is....to feel safe and secure.  And I have HOPE because if you don't have HOPE, you have nothing at all.  Every year we HOPE that the next one will be a little bit better.  I'm keeping my fingers crossed (and throwing in lots of prayers).