Neons over Brown Kraft

Repurposing another vintage book, “The Potato Garden”, A Grower’s Guide, by Maggie Oster. Not sure of the copyright year since I already worked the first page, but it’s the perfect type of book to journal in. The pages are heavy, brown kraft, have wonderful illustrations you can include in your art and don’t have an overwhelming number of pages. Why spend top dollar for mixed media journals and sketchbooks when you can pick these up for a quarter or so at thrift shops. First page held up beautifully to a layer of gesso and heavy body acrylics through stencils. (Sorry, Maggie!)

I’m loving the bright paints I’m using to cover the brown kraft pages. Here I used an array of Artist Loft neon acrylics applied with brushes, my fingers and a palette knife through stencils. Getting out my heat gun because I can’t wait to turn the page and start again!

paper garden

Arrange paint and ephemera scraps into a pattern you love, then glue together to hold in place.  With your sewing machine, stitch the assemblage in several areas using a variety of stitch patterns.  Add some flowers using bright acrylics then gesso over an area to write on, making sure it’s completely dry first.

The day I created this, I received a little package in the mail from China and was enchanted with the postage label.  Sometimes one small element like that will inspire your entire project.

I’m not sure what I’ll do with this construction – perhaps transform it further into a cover for one of my journals.  The possibilities here are endless…another reason I’m in love with mixed media!

forever…

Acrylic paint sits well atop this oil pastel background and affords a smooth surface for rubber stamp and gel pen ink.

To preserve these layers, apply a coat of Krylon spray sealant and forget about it (but remember, no “thing” lasts forever!)

“Give thanks to the Lord for He is good; His love endures forever”  (Psalm 106:1).

Rites of Spring

SOLD

Crinkled tissue paper makes for a great textured background, but apply it to your canvas with a slight coat of thick gel medium, rather than a liquid glue, such as Mod Podge.

Check your ephemera collection for colors and shapes that speak 0f Spring and you’ll find yourself creating with a feeling of sunniness!  Outline your forms with bright-colored pencils and oil pastels rather than dark inks.  Spring is in two days…celebrate with light!

e.

Corrugate

Try playing on something you find lying around, like this crenelated square I found inside a mailing box.  It was sturdy, held fluid acrylics well, and didn’t allow wet inks to soak through.

Hearts so often grace my work, but today I especially had Valentine’s Day in mind…10 days away!   Love,

e.

The Documented Life Project Catch-Up – Using an “Un” Hand Carved Stamp

November Theme
Stencils, Stamps & Masks
November 14
Art Challenge: Use a Hand Carved Stamp
Journal Prompt: Tapestries

I’ll have to say, I’m not wild about creating with rubber stamps.  Occasionally I’ll stamp out a word or two with my mini alpha set, but as for images, I’d rather design with the tip of my trusty ink dropper.

Yet each week, DLP challenges me to a technique I might not have tried on my own, and it always leads to something wonderful, like these inky butterflies, taking wing within my pages.

There’s nothing to lose when it comes to art.  Years from now, should I return to this page, what will I remember?  Perhaps the beginning of my new love for rubber stamps!

e.

The Documented Life Project – October 24 Journal Prompt: Windows of My Mind

October Theme:  Translucent Papers
October 24 Art Challenge: Glassine
Journal Prompt: Windows of My Mind

I Googled glassine and discovered it’s very close to waxed paper. So I started with a nice sheet of it and trimmed off the edges. I added old book and magazine ephemera to create a collage then finger painted with gesso and acrylics to blend it together.

With the tip of a black ink dropper I journaled, “Wisdom Window” on the edge of the right-hand page and finished it off with a sprinkling of superfine turquoise glitter.

The Documented Life Project – October Theme: Translucent Papers – This Week’s Challenge: Vellum

Crinkled vellum paper is wonderful to use as a drip pad for your art when you recycle it as background material for your journal pages.

Here I applied a large piece of it to the entire two pages of my journal with matte medium, then trimmed the edges.  Easy peasy…half done!

More matte medium…I randomly applied pieces of ephemera from my stash, then decoupaged over them for posterity.  Next, I used a plastic paint spatula to apply heavy body turquoise acrylic through a sheet of stencil “waste.”

With a popsicle stick, I transferred today’s date, “ten 17 15,” using rub-ons.

To finish, I scratched the words from today’s journal prompt, “Sheer Genius” with the tip of an India Ink dropper, then tapped the excess droplets about both pages.

It was a rough week that continued through today, but this week’s Challenge arrived just in time to help put some art back into my heart.  Thanks once again, DLP friends…love having you in my life!  E.

The Documented Life Project – October Theme: Translucent Papers

This week’s DLP challenge prompted me to use a few of the messy drip and blot papers in my trash stash.

This is a 12″x12″ thin linen canvas that I started with a coat of gesso then a soft layer of burnt umber.  After both layers dried, I began adding the paper scraps with matte medium.  With a mini flat brush, I added a white flower, some leaves and a vine, which is barely visible after giving the whole piece a good paper towel rub to bring it all together.

At the last moment, I used black India ink to journal on a scrap of printer paper that was splattered with acrylic paint.  I tore it out then applied it to the top of the canvas with matte medium.

I think this piece has an Oriental flair and I’m happy with it, so it’s now hanging in my Etsy shop, waiting for a new home.  Konbanwa!

The Documented Life Project – Challenge: Faces – “I Can See Clearly Now”

This was “eye-opening” – no pun intended!  I watched Dina Wakley’s how-to-draw-a-face tutorial, then put a pencil to a sheet of canvas paper, and less than five minutes later had a pair of eyes!  The result sort of stunned me, since I never intended them to be mine – but there they were, looking back at me, and I wondered whether so many years of applying eye makeup played a role in my efforts.

I haven’t tried my hand at the whole face, but can “see clearly now” that Dina was right…you can do it!  Thank you, Dina!  e.

The Documented Life Project – Challenge: “When Not to Stop”

The Documented Life Project’s February Theme was, “Layers You Will Love!” and the February 7 Challenge was, “When Not to Stop.”

Hmm, February…

…July – hey, it’s never too late to start!  So in the wee hours of this morning I finished mine, and it’s apparent I knew when not to stop!  HOW FUN WAS THAT?

The Documented Life Project July Theme: Ephemera – July 11 Challenge: Focal Point vs. Layering

This week’s DLP Art Challenge is to create with a focal point and add layering as you go.

As you might have guessed, I’m all about hearts; all about love!

So after journaling in white over my shabby background of teal, lavender and yellow-gold acrylics, I began layering hearts with a cosmetic sponge through a stencil with red and pink acrylics to create an upward motion.  The illusion is that the hearts get smaller as they rise, but in fact they were laid down using the same stencil I drew and cut from a magazine cover for stability.

In following with the ephemera theme, I chose a small piece of an antique staple box, which blended right into the page.  I inked and splattered over it, which led me to my focal point of lettering, “focus on love.”

I’m so passionate about these journal prompts and look forward to seeing what other members create as they inspire me with each weekly challenge! Supplies used:  Artist’s Loft Acrylics (Michaels), Black India Ink (Michaels), White Uniball Signo Gel Pen (Everything Stamps & Stencils), Cosmetic Sponges (Dollar Tree).

e.

The Documented Life Project July Theme: Ephemera

This week’s DLP Art Challenge is to use old maps, letters, tickets “& more,” and the journal prompt is,  Life…with a history.

When I hear “ephemera,” I think of magazine clippings, junk mail envelopes, cancelled postage stamps, artsy product labels and bits and pieces of receipts.

I enjoyed this so much, I added a second page, which well documents the days following my July 4th holiday.  A cancelled postage stamp of the Madonna, cascading roses (her favorite!) from the latest Real Simple magazine, a Mix & Mingle stationery box label and pink acrylic painted hearts made for a bright page, which perfectly reflects my week of happy surprises! To tie this all together, I used a cosmetic sponge to blend the same shade of pink onto the roses to make them mine.

A peek at the second page reveals part of an emptied brown kraft Fresh Market package of espresso beans, which I painted and journaled over.  A piece of an Anthropologie receipt will later remind me of a drive to Palm Beach Gardens to spend a generous gift card from a friend who always brings joy to my heart.

I’m passionate about these journal prompts and look forward to seeing what other members create as they inspire me with each weekly challenge!

Wet Paint

It’s been quite a day for my family.  My dear nephew and his beautiful wife gave birth to a gorgeous, healthy baby boy.  They named him Harrison Steven and he is amazing!  Tonight my art reflects the love in my soul…one after another heart filled with something different.

I titled this post, “Wet Paint” because I couldn’t wait until the canvas dried to photograph it.  In fact, it’s not yet finished.  Tomorrow’s another day, but I can’t imagine it being any better than this one.  God is great!

He makes all things new

Journal pages should invite…like these pears do, to a hungry bird’s appetite. I don’t know about you, but my appetite for recording what’s in my heart is enormous, so I write daily.  It’s like stopping time with a photograph…you come back to it years later,  reunited to each detail.

For tonight, however, my thoughts are new, and I’ll record them on a page similar to this one, which is for sale in my new Etsy Shop, Pink Soul Studios…here’s the link! 

bright matters

I chose this typewriter image from my stash of magazine cutouts.  When you see something that catches your eye, tear it out and save it until the piece “fits.”  The jet black in the image against the pink [acrylic] background brightened the repeat stenciled pattern and made for the perfect end to my journal with coffee morning…happy June 1!

heart art

There’s a lot happening on tonight’s page.  But art is so very personal; there’s never too much or too little, and there are never inapt color choices.  So unless you’re creating something custom, you get to choose!

Art is about mood and music, what’s handy on your art table and what’s not.  It’s about pulling out ephemera you forgot you had and about creating something new on the spot.

Putting your heart on paper with abandon allows you to come back to it, perhaps months later, and recall exactly how you felt.

junk art

“Ephemera” was one of the first art journaling words I learned, and it’s really just anything you come across that you’d love to add to your journal page.  It can be bought, found, cut out, torn out, unpeeled, unglued, unstapled (you get the idea), then saved and stashed for later.  At the moment, I have three folders full.

Inside one of the folders are mail remnants.  To me, there’s nothing worse than seeing a trash bag filled with paper sitting next to an empty recycle bin.  So, I do my little part and save the security envelopes inside the junk mail that comes to our house.  I never realized how many great patterns there are, mostly in black or baby blue – I love them all.  Here’s one that I glue-sticked down and lined over for journaling later.

You might never look at your mail the same again!  Have a closer look at tomorrow’s to see what’s interesting…

REUSE, RECYCLE, REJOICE!