Did you hear about the 100-Day Project?
"It’s a celebration of process that encourages everyone to participate in 100 days of making. The great surrender is the process; showing up day after day is the goal. For the 100-Day Project, it’s not about fetishizing finished products—it’s about the process."
The project is sponsored by Elle Luna & The Great Discontent site. Check out the details - and join in.
You're supposed to create a unique hashtag for your project. I'm calling mine - #100DaysofArtCreations.
I worked on a couple of small collage pieces that I will post on Monday. But now I'm thinking of creating hand lettered art instead. Why not change my mind! As Elle says, "It's about the process."
Reading these posts will surely inject your weekend with inspiration and new ideas. Read one post now and the others later. Or binge on creativity and read them all now. Be sure to keep a notebook handy while you read.
Technorati Tags: be creative now, boost creative confidence, Brainzooming, creative process, creative thinking skills, creative tips, enhance creativity, inspiration, Mike Brown, mixed media art, motivate creativity, motivation, social media sources, unusual creativity
Image from Dick Blick site
I was surprised to find out that plaster cloth was used to make these art pieces. I actually have plaster cloth purchased from Dick Blick hidden away in one of my cabinets. I'm definitely going to try this technique, especially since the warmer weather offers a bounty of flowers, leaves and interesting weeds.
To find other projects on the Dick Blick site, click the link near the top of the page that is labeled, For Artists - then click on Project Ideas.
For my submission, I used soft-colored paints, decorative tissue trim and plaster to create the word: Color. I took artistic license with the prompt - and reworked it into: paint under the plaster.
Originally, I was going to use (small print) rose-covered tissue paper for this piece. I had a few pieces that I was hoarding because I can't seem to find either tissue paper or napkins imprinted with roses. Well, I misplaced my hoarded rose-covered tissue paper so I used another sheet of decorative tissue.
I notice that many European mixed-media artists use flowered tissue paper or napkins. I've checked all types of stores in the USA but I guess it's not popular here. If you find a source, please let me know.
Technorati Tags: April 4th Art Challenge, April Theme, art journal, color, Color Safari, Exploring Inks and Paints, Journal Prompt, mixed media art, plaster, The Documented Life Project, Water Under the Bridge, Watercolors
Roanoke River Light House in Edenton
Yesterday, we visited Edenton, NC which is about 20 minutes from our home. The town was recognized by Forbes.com as one of America’s Prettiest Towns. Edenton has a relaxed vibe and a lovely downtown area filled with shops, restaurants and small businesses.
A continual source of amazement to me in North Carolina are the Cypress trees (correct name: baldcypress trees). I think they are beautiful and have a romantic mystery to them.
Old Log Piles
I was fascinated by this old log pile in the river so I just had to take a photo of it. On our way to Edenton I was on the lookout for abandoned houses but we didn't find any suitable ones. I like to take pictures of old homes and then use them in my collage art. I probably will use the Cypress tree and log piles in a collage piece.
Our Shih Tzu, Tia & Teddie, enjoyed the tour but liked the ice cream best at the end of the trip.
Here's some food for thought for this weekend: Today, I happened upon the post, How to Encourage More Creative Thinking written by Gregory Ciotti. He is the host of Sparring Mind. The article is quite long but there's a lot of good information presented. Here are just a few of the interesting ideas:
Create Psychological Distance - "While it’s long been known that abstaining from a task is useful for breaking through a creative block, it also seems that creating psychological distance may also be useful."
Check out the complete article and determine how you can apply these ideas to your art.
Via Jeanne Oliver's ning, I'm taking Danielle Donaldson's online class, Creative Girl: Storybooks & Studious Girls. Above is my first watercolor painting.
I like the fact that Danielle teaches us illustration techniques rather than just how to create whimsical drawings. I highly recommend the course.
Here's a description of Jeanne's ning:
"This network is a creative community that has been designed to inspire, encourage and connect you with other artists."
"This network is free to join. Once you are a member you can connect with other members, chat, join in the forums, join free art courses and even purchase classes."
Jeanne's ning is very well run and jam-packed with many opportunities. Check it out!
Technorati Tags: creative community, Creative Girl - Storybooks & Studious Girls, Danielle Donaldson, forums, illustration techniques, Jeanne Oliver ning, mixed media art, online class, sketches, watercolor paintings, whimsical drawings
I've been toying with the idea of creating cartoons in my Art Journal. So I searched around and came up with these resources:
So what do you think - Do you see any comics in your future Art Journal Pages?
Check out the complete post for more details. You need to scroll down to get to the Ten Tips.
Which of these ideas can you apply to your own art?
I used the word Focus in two different ways: I focused on painting an Oriental Ship. And I focused on painting a wet-in-wet watercolor painting.
In the reference photo, the ship's sails were orange. Since I'm really not an orange person, I made the sails pink.
Yesterday, one of our members, Julie Armstrong, hosted our Tidewater Artists Group (TAG) at her home for the Art of Conversation.
Whenever our group meets, we're always busy creating, either at one of our workshops or Art Journaling Sessions. Julie had the idea of meeting just to talk. We enjoyed a wonderful afternoon discussing art, future workshops, creative ideas, sharing resources and more. Of course, we shared a delicious meal too.
Julie created the cutest gifts for us: a small notebook necklace (for taking notes), Daisy water jugs, Think Out of the Box pendants and a sachet that carried the scent of the Ocean, appropriate for the Tidewater area.
It turned into a beautiful afternoon that helped us leave the winter winds behind us - and look forward to Spring.
I finally began and completed my art journal page for The Documented Life Project. The March 14 Challenge is Borders. I know that I'm a bit behind but maybe I can catch up on some of the previous 2015 challenges.
For my borders, I used floral napkins printed in England and the words Fleurs Bistro stenciled in plaster. The stencil comes from the Americana Decor line (from DecoArt).
Are you participating in the challenges?
Yesterday I painted this close-up of a Daisy on 4" x 4" watercolor paper. I used Kosher Salt on the background and center of the flower.
I don't know if I mentioned this before but lately I enjoy working with MaimeriBlu watercolor paint in Cyan. I love the range of shades the color produces.
What is your favorite watercolor paint?
I like - and agree - with what he says about the habit of reading: "Reading the right book at the right time can help us spark an idea for a project, guide us toward the exact solution we need for a problem, or otherwise inspire or motivate us when it matters most."
I've always been voracious reader ever since I was a child. In fact, I'm usually reading three or four books at any one time. I'm not counting the reading I do on my laptop or iPad.
For more details, check out the complete post. How about you? Do you have a reading habit?
I created some whimsical sketches using Shipping Tags and Letraset Pastel ProMarkers. The manila tint of the tags slightly affected the final marker colors. Maybe, I'll use white tags next time.
Oddly, the spot that you see on the top, left-hand side of the birthday cake tag does not show up on the actual tag. Hmmm.....
The warm weather is finally coming! Here in North Carolina it's now 66 degrees outside with a high of 69 degrees expected today. And even warmer weather is predicted for this week. YAY!
To create this mixed-media piece, I cut out heart shapes from bleeding tissue paper. First, I wet the Bristol Board paper and then laid down the hearts. I added more water and a sprinkling of Kosher salt. After it dried, I removed the hearts/salt. I was surprised at the resulting subdued colors. Only the orange tissue looked vibrant.
To deepen the hues, I added some Gouache paint. I so like the texture created by the salt.
Take a few minutes to check out the complete post. It's a good read.
Here's another recent sketch that I did using pencil, blending stump and pen. I recently began drawing - and hand lettering - with the Uni-ball Vision Elite Roller Ball Pens.
Now I know why they are such a popular pen. The ink flow is so smooth. Plus, they are archival quality and acid-free ink.
What's your favorite pen?
Here's the beginning of a page in my small Art Journal. I may just add some shading and words. I want to keep this page simple.
It's unusually cold here in North Carolina so I switched from my daily walks in Nature to the tread mill at the Fitness Center. Studies indicate that walking indoors or outdoors similarly boosts creative inspiration.
However, I read another study that claims walking outdoors is more conducive to creativity. I agree with the latter study since I feel so much more expansive and inspired when I walk outside and observe the sky, trees and wildlife.
Still, one advantage of the treadmill is that I get more time to read. I was re-reading the book, The Muse Is In: An Owner's Manual to Your Creativity written by Jill Badonsky today.
I liked what she said about summoning up your muse: "Act Nonchalant - Starting an activity with the intention of just playing to pass the time or have fun can relax the same pressure that turns into creative blocks. Make time for just toying with something, not for the best seller, the perfect art or the brilliant invention."
How do you invite your muse to play?
I continue to be amazed at the intriguing magazines that one can find on Issuu.
Today, I discovered the March 2015 issue of Ideas magazine which appears to be based in South Africa.
Topics covered include:
Grab a cup of coffee and take some time to check it out.
Via the Empty Easel, I came across this helpful post on Seven Advanced Drawing Tips for Creating Photo-Realistic Drawings in Pencil and Graphite written by H. Edward Brooks.
Lots of good information here. Here are a couple of tips that I am going to try:
Check out the complete post for more drawing details.
Here's a sketch that I recently completed. I used pencil, pen and a paper stump.
It's so true that the more that you practice sketching, the better you become at it. I will have to keep working on my portraits.
I may make a copy of this sketch and paint it.
What have you recently drawn in your sketchbook?
Image from Schiffer Publishing site
When I first began leafing through Pigments of Your Imagination (Creating with Alcohol Inks) written by Cathy Taylor, I thought to myself, “I need this book.” As I got further into the chapters, I thought, “You (dear reader) need this book.”
Before reading the book, I had played with alcohol inks but I felt that I didn’t take the medium far enough. True, I created interesting alcohol ink patterns but I wanted to do so much more. This author definitely opens up new possibilities for alcohol ink explorations.
The Materials & Tools Section covers substrates, color variety, adhesives, mediums and a wide assortment of tools. Did you know that you can create alcohol ink art with craft foam, coffee stirrers, contact paper? And an oiler boiler? There is also a helpful discussion about the many different brands of alcohol inks on the market.
Drip and Blow Texture Technique
The Simply Start Chapter gives you a good foundation on how to work with these unpredictable yet vivid and enticing inks. This is important because the rules of alcohol ink are much different from other mediums, as some of you may already know.
Taylor walks you through simple techniques to help you understand how colors react, blend and invade other colors. I am especially interested in experimenting with the Drip and Blow Texture as one of my first projects.
In the Special Effects Chapter, you’ll learn that the addition of simple materials such as wax paper, stencils - or even masking fluid - and alcohol inks can result in some spectacular art paintings. Mixing and matching techniques will enhance the visual effects of your work.
In the Ink-Scapes Chapter, there is information on how to lay a wash with alcohol ink, create a mountain landscape, seascape, dreamscaping with June Rollins - and even a cityscape.
I enjoy painting flowers so the chapter on Flora and Fauna-Scapes really caught my interest. There’s a cool technique on using a hair dryer to manipulate the inks into floral shapes. Artists Diane Marcotte, Wendy Wilkins and Karen Walker also share their secrets on creating stunning and more intricate alcohol ink paintings.
Madras Effect Technique
The Fabric Effects Chapter offers techniques for creating batik-style paintings and madras patterns. You can also marble fabric using alcohol inks and shaving cream. Surprisingly, alcohol ink dyeing works with silk fabric too.
In the Everything Else Chaper, you’ll discover how metal, ceramic tile, plastic, glass – in fact any substrate that is nonporous - offers opportunities for artistic experimentation and even recycling. In the latter case, think aluminum cans.
You can quickly and easily create marbled papers which can then be used for collage, greeting cards, wrapping paper or in your art journal. Finally, a Gallery of alcohol ink artists gives readers more motivation for producing their own unique art masterpieces.
Clearly, Taylor offers readers a comprehensive source book on how to explore the spontaneity and color vibrancy of alcohol inks. As I mentioned in my introduction, “You need this book.”
Technorati Tags: alcohol inks, book review, Cathy Taylor, collage, everything else chapter, fabric effects, flora and fauna-scapes, ink-scapes, materials and tools, mixed media art, Pigments of Your Imagination, simply start chapter, special effects
I'm continuing to sort out my collage materials, ephemera and paper files. Today I came across some past magazine columns written by Terri Trespicio.
The columns, 10 Thoughts on Whole Living, appeared in the now defunct Whole Living magazine produced by Martha Stewart. I always enjoyed reading Terri's inspiring words. Here are some of my favorites from those columns:
Most of these quotes can easily apply to artists.
Terri Trespicio is a writer, lifestyle and relationship expert and media personality. Check out Terri's blog for more details.
Munsell color system, 1915, Albert H. Munsell - Pre-Pantone
You'll find a lot of your favorite museums: National Gallery of Art - Musée d'Orsay - The Smithsonian - MoMA and so much more. Check out the The Permanent Collection and Galleries, Exhibitions and Shows Lists too.
You must also view the Virtual Vatican Sistine Chapel. I actually felt as if I was standing in the Chapel once again. Such beauty!
Troll through the online museums for some quick inspiration for your next art work.
Technorati Tags: (MoOM), art galleries, art shows, Coudal Partners, mixed media art, MoMA, Munsell color system, Museum of Online Museums, Musée d'Orsay, National Gallery of Art, Swiss Miss, The Smithsonian, Virtual Vatican Sistine Chapel
Via the Arts Business Institute (ABI), I discovered this post on 10 Reasons to Diversify Your Creative Product Line. Although the article is targeted to artists who sell their creative products to wholesale buyers, I believe the information is also useful to Etsy-type sellers. Here are a few of the points that caught my interest:
Read the complete post for more useful information that you can apply to your own small business.
I finally finished my huge hooked rug.... But.......I still need to sew on the black yarn edging - and the back binding tape. This is in addition to all of the mixed media art projects that I'm absorbed in.
I don't think I will ever hook such a large rug again. It's too time consuming. However, working on it during our rug hooking group meetings does make the process go faster. We all do traditional rug hooking and create our own designs.
Our Tidewater Artists Group (TAG) met on Valentine's Day for our monthly Art Journaling session. Stephanee Howell and Catherine Mein co-hosted the event at Catherine's beach house in Sanbridge Beach, VA.
Catherine led a lively session on how to make Pattern Books. Using paper templates, tons of embellishments and ephemera, we created unique book pages. We edged each page differently by cutting or gluing on an assortment of decorations.
Here are some of the pages that I did.
Last we created a spiral binding for the books. I still have a lot more work to do. I want to cut and embellish the remaining pages. Last, I will be painting each page.
We had a fun time and delicious food.
If you regularly read my blog, you know that I especially like posts/articles on Creativity. Here are two inspirational sources you may also enjoy:
What's a Mash-Up? According to Fraley:
"Mash-Ups, put simply, are combinations. In innovation work, the desire in doing a Mash-Up is to get to that wonderful fresh snow of new thinking. It’s new thinking that creates new products and services.......Mash-Ups can indeed get you to that elusive fresh thinking that leads to innovative solutions."
Although the article is primarily targeted to the business world, I believe artists will find specific nuggets of information to help them come up with new ideas for their art - and art business. Be prepared - the post is quite long. But you can always read it in short segments.
Follow Your Fascination:
"If you find yourself fascinated by a new idea, chances are good that there's something meaningful about it for you to consider. Fascination, quite simply, is nature's way of getting our attention........ It's an indication that we are being called. Out of the thousands of ideas with the power to capture our imagination, the felt fascination for one of them is a clue that there's something worthy of our engagement."
What new ideas will you come up with this weekend?
Technorati Tags: A How To Guide, breakthrough ideas, creativity roundup, follow your fascination, Gregg Fraley blog, Idea Champions, innovative solutions, inspiration, Mash-Ups For Innovation, mixed media art, new thinking, visual artists
I generally do not keep separate Art Journals for each medium. I usually do paintings, collage and everything else in one journal.
This year I'm doing something different. I created a Watercolor Art Journal which I posted about a few days ago.
Now, I've taken an inexpensive small Piccadilly journal (about 5" x 8") and decided to do Simple Art Pieces in its' pages. Maybe collage art or paintings. Here is the first page that I worked on. I may add some art stamps to the page.
Well, I'm now at that stage where it's difficult to find the art supplies in my Studio. I'm sure you can identify: piles of papers and books, half-finished projects waiting to be completed, bottles of paint, mediums and glue scattered about and on it goes.
I decided to organize my colored pencils first. I had been keeping my pencils in a box which made it difficult to find the appropriate colors that I needed. So I purchased two Yasutomo Niji Rolls from Dick Blick for $4.95 each. The rolls have the capacity to hold 36 pencils, pens, markers, water brushes or other drawing supplies.
I like the idea that I can see all of my colored pencils spread out before me. I need to purchase two more rolls. Yes, I have more colored pencils (including watercolor pencils). I also want to arrange my colored markers in another roll.
Now, it's on to tackling the paper collection. It's so difficult to part with collage papers and ephemera.
I'm back to my nightly sketching routine. I had gotten off track due to other projects but now I both sketch and practice my hand lettering on a daily basis. I enjoy filling up notebooks with this work.
The best part is looking at my past endeavors to see how I have progressed, changed and grown in my art.
I completed the above sketch last night using a pencil, pen and a paper stump for shading.
Do you have a daily art practice?
I purchased Jane Davenport's new book, Beautiful Faces (Drawing & Painting).
In one exercise, Jane suggest painting some ovals on a page and adding two curved guidelines (horizontal and vertical) on the ovals. Next, place facial features on the guidelines.
Since my watercolor paints were not nearby, I colored my ovals with a yellow highlighter - and then added the details. Jane's book is very comprehensive and jam-packed with great techniques. You may want to check it out.
Technorati Tags: #thepostmansknock , art stamps, butterfly, card challenge, DIY Greeting Cards, handcrafted cards, Lindsey, mixed media art, orient express, paper scraps, purple, ThePostmansKnock blog, trains, vintage ephemera
I decided to devote an Art Journal to watercolor painting. However, I didn't have a journal with watercolor paper. And the nearest art supply store is over an hour away.
So I went to Walmart and purchased a Canson Watercolor Pad (140# weight). Cost was $6.00. (About a month ago Walmart was selling them for $5.00). I separated the pages from the pad.
Then I went to Office Max and asked for a spiral binding. Cost for this service was $3.52. For a total of $9.52, I now have a Watercolor Art Journal. I'm happy with the results.
I'm happy to report that my Cinnamon Pink Banner is published in the Feb/Mar/April 2015 issue of Artful Blogging magazine. My Banner appears in the Banners We Love Section.
I'm in good company.There are nine other lovely and beautiful banners featured in this section of the magazine.
Managing Editor, Danielle Mohler, has put together a fabulous issue. The photographs are absolutely breathtaking. And the bloggers' vignettes will surely inspire you to create some art and stories of your own.
This issue is just the pick-up that you need on a cold Winter's Day.
Technorati Tags: Artful Blogging magazine, artist bloggers, awesome photographs, Banners We Love Section, Cinnamon Pink Banner, Feb/Mar/April 2015 issue, Managing Editor Danielle Mohler, mixed media art, Stampington magazines, story vignettes
I recently purchased some Dick Blick Studio Artists' Wood Panels for my mixed media art work.
So I was interested in discovering this post on Lori McNee's Fine Art Tips site - How to Make Your Own Inexpensive Small Painting Panels.
Artist Marc Hanson "makes his own small panels from 8 Ply 100% Rag Museum Board. He uses Crescent board."
"Hanson first cuts the panels out with a mat knife and an aluminum ruler. He primes them either with a coat of shellac, a thin coat of acrylic primer with pumice and then shellac or he glues linen or canvas directly to the panel using, Miracle Muck." You can read the complete post here.
What substrates do you use for your art work?
Leslie Saeta, founder of Thirty Paintings in Thirty Days, provided us with details on how to create a collage of our 30 paintings in PicMonkey.
I'll spare you the grisly details but things were not exactly working out for me. I did manage to incorporate 25 of my 30 paintings into a collage. YAY!
Check out Leslie's blog for the collage creations of the other participating artists.
Today is the last day - Day Thirty - of 30 Paintings in 30 Days. I'm back to circles again. But this time, I added some white accents.
During the Thirty Day Challenge, I actually only missed two days. So I created two catch-up art pieces. Here is my rendition of a pinkish-red cone flower painted with watercolors.
And last, I painted purple circles on a vintage page from an old typography book - and mounted the art on some brown paper left over from a delivery package.
Note: Typepad is acting up again. I can't delete that unwelcome rectangle you see below.
My article - and art work - is published in the Spring 2015 issue of GreenCraft magazine.
As you can see, Editor Devon Warren and her staff did a beautiful job with the photography of my Elegant Eco-Artist T-Shirts. The photographs make my T-Shirts look like they came from a fancy boutique.
I hope that you make some Artist T-Shirts for yourself and play the role of the Elegant Diva while creating in your Studio.
And be sure to check out the other innovative and fun projects from the contributing artists in this inspiring issue!
Only one more day to go! It's Day Twenty Nine of 30 Paintings in 30 Days.
I painted a cone flower again but instead of working with watercolor paints I used washes of acrylic paint.
Diluting acrylic paint with water offers the advantage that once it dries, it won't lift when you apply more water and/or paint. While watercolor dries lighter, acrylics will dry at the same value and intensity when it is used transparently. However, using acrylic paint will dry darker when used opaquely.
Have you ever worked with transparent washes of acrylic paint?