Friday, May 29, 2020

Journey of a page

   This month on the Dragonfly Dreamers Exploration group page the theme is art journaling.  I have been playing in art journals for 6 or 7 years now. It is probably one of my favourite things to do. There are no rules and it doesn't have to be perfect because it's just for me. I use them to experiment and try new techniques and mediums. I use them to do online class work in. I use them for doodling, drawing...well for just about anything. I have quite a few I'm working in at any given time and I often work in more than one at a time. The sizes vary from small 5"x5" handmade journals to larger 8"x12".  Mostly I like to use ones with heavy watercolour paper but a few have different paper and one is all black.
   Often when there is left over paint from other projects or students work, I slap it into a journal page without any thought as to what I will do with it. So my journals have quite a few pages in this ugly stage. Last week I asked people on my social media to choose a page for me to finish. This is the page they chose and it's journey.

This page was probably the nicer of the three to chose from. At this stage it's just left over paint that's been slopped on and a bit added with a stencil. I often don't have an idea when I start a page but for this one I did. I knew I wanted a kind of jungle leafy look and a face peaking out. But first I needed layers.

Since it already had some stenciling started it only seemed natural to keep going with more layers of stencils. This is all done with acrylic paints. It's amazing how fast doing some layers of stencils can bring the page together.

After the stenciling I was drawn to the circles so I accentuated them a bit with pastels and graphite.

At this point I did something that I almost regretted. I took some paint and scraped it across the page here and there. I did not like this as soon as I got it on and this stuff dries fast. I quickly took a paper towel and took some off. It didn't take it all but the effect worked after all. This is the light coloured splotches(technical term) you can see. I could live with it now.
Then it was time for mark making. For this I used pastels, Marabu Art crayons and some graphite. 

And then there are all the details. I spent quite a while, over a few days playing with the rest. For the leaves I used mostly acrylic paint and some Posca paint pens. I used Caran D'ache Neocolor II to do some shading and blending of the background. More marks were added in spaces that needed them.  It was a very fun page to do. 

I hope you enjoyed hearing a bit about the process of a journal page. Are you an art journaler?

Keep Creating!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

A challenge for challenging times.

   I hope in these challenging time you are finding some peace of mind in creativity. My studio has certainly been my sanctuary in the last month and I'm so grateful for it. 
   I've been playing with a lot of different things and exploring a few new ones. Although I had lots of things to do and play with I decided to give myself a challenge for the month of April. I am doing a sketch/drawing each day and posting on Instagram. Drawing is something that I have been wanting to do more of so I thought this was a good opportunity. 
Day 3 Flutter

Day 4 Nest

Day 5 Lush

Day 6 Breeze

Day 10 Fledgling.
   If you'd like to see more or to join in use #sketchapril2020 on Instagram.

   What creativeness have you been doing to keep you going?


Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Monthly Explorations

   It's been an interesting year so far to say the least. I've been taking some time to reboot and work on some new projects over the winter and just when I am ready to get back to doing some workshops the world has turned upside down. Now it's time to rethink the next  steps to take.
   Being an introvert makes the social distancing an easy thing to do for me. So I'm choosing to take advantage of my extra time alone in the studio to play and catch up on things. I hope you're able to make the best of the situation and give yourself permission to play.

   One of the things that has kept me busy this year is my Monthly Explorations Themes over on my FB group. In January the theme was Doodling, Mark Making and Drawing. What's not to like about that!

8"x5" journal page on Bristol Smooth

9"x11.5" Dylusions journal page.

In February the theme was Stencils. I love my stencils and use them often. There are so many ways to use them. Here are just a few.

Since it was February I had to do a few heart cards. I made my own heart stencil with a heart die I have and then layered other stencils on top of it for the patterns. I used Distress Inks and Oxides for the colours along with some light modeling paste and Finnabair Icing Paste for the texture through stencils.

Multiple layered stencils.

This page was done with a lot of layers of collage material, paints and stencils. The mushrooms were a new stencil I got recently from Stencil Girl. I used Nuvo Expanding Mousse through the stencil. This was an new product for me and I loved the way it puffs up when heated. Once dried I coloured the mushrooms with Finnabair waxes.

9.5"x8" double page in small Dylusions journal.

This is another page done with lots of layers and even more stencils. But here the stencils are used mostly in the background instead of the focal point as the mushrooms were. 
9.5"x8" double page in small Dylusions journal.

  And now in March the theme is Watercolour. This is not a medium that I play with much or know much about so it really is about exploring and learning. 
  I made myself a small book with 5.5"x5.5" watercolour paper pages to do my playing/experimenting in. It is a nice size to try out something new.

   I did a few pages of rocks. They were great for practicing some mixing and layering of colours.
Watercolour rocks.
   These little swatch doodles were inspired by a fun Canadian Artist, Cee Cee's Creations. You can find many of her videos on Youtube. They were very fun to do. I'm sure I will be doing more of them this month. 

Watercolour swatch doodles.
  If you'd like to see more come over and take a look at Dragonfly Dreamers Monthly Exploration Themes. And of course you are always welcome to join the group.

Keep Creating!

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Starting the year with colours

This years first workshop was a fun group that contacted me to do an Acrylic Pour Swipe workshop for them. It's always nice to have a group of friends in the studio to play. Since they hadn't done any Acrylic Pouring before we did a little exploring with Dirty Pours as well as swipes and waves. They did really well for their first time pouring. 





This is a sampling of one of each of their pours that they created in an afternoon. 
Thanks Karen for organizing your friends for a play day here in the studio. Look forward to seeing you again some time.

Happy Creating!

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Imagination is Boundless Workshop

   I love the name of this workshop. It's actually the saying that is on the sample canvas but it is so appropriate for this workshop. The possibilities for it are endless. 
   I work very intuitively when I create so I don't usually think about the specific things I use and why I'm choosing them but when it's done it usually tells a story or teaches me something. For me it's about letting go and not overthinking it.
  These students did a great job of not over thinking things and created something that is all their own.




Do you work intuitively or do you have a plan before you start?

Keep Creating!

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Card making time.

It's that time of year again! Have you starting your Christmas cards yet? Do you make your own cards? Do you even send out cards any more?
Well here in the studio we've been making cards like crazy. My Creative Studio Tuesday evening group has been busy with Christmas creating since the beginning of the month. This past Saturday was the Christmas Cards workshop. As with most of the workshops, once they learned the basic techniques they have an infinite number of ways to go with their cards. Just take a look at the wonderful variety they created. 





I hope you receive a few cards as lovely as these this year.

I will have a few of my cards for sale along with everything else creative I've been up to this year, at this Sundays Open Studio here in the studio at 3557 Munster Rd. I will be here with friend selling our creative wares from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. Come on out for a coffee and some lovely company. See you soon.

Happy Creating!

Monday, August 26, 2019

Totem Grid Canvas workshop

I just notice that I didn't post my Totem Grid Canvas workshop from earlier this month. I hadn't taught it in a few year so there were a few requests for it. It's one of my all time favourite workshops to teach so I was happy to be doing it again. I love the techniques with texture and all the fun combination of objects people use to finish it off. 



Mary Anne.

Teaching this workshop again has inspired me so much. I see more grid canvases in my future and possibly some interesting variations on this theme.

Keep Creating!


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