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    Wednesday
    Nov122014

    Inktober Review

    I've been meaning to summarize my work and discoveries after the Inktober Challenge and it was Anika's wrap-up of pattern work for the challenge that visually "prompted" me to pull together my ink work from the month of October. To analyze the results, I worked on about 27 different pages during the month. Worked with a variety of markers, pens, inks, dip pens, nibs, the rapidograph and also high flow acrylics. I forgot to include two pages where I filmed tutorials... another mandala and a slow journaling page. There were a bunch of pages going simultaneously {as per usual} and some pages took 2-3 days to finish. There's stitching on a few of the slow journaling pages too. 

    All in all, I'm really happy with the way the month played out, even with two family birthdays, recuperation from dental surgery plus a Halloween get-together at our house. The coolest thing is that I didn't plan ahead and just went with whatever I was in the mood for each day. I wound up working on a lot of themes and techniques and just exploring without any particular goal. 

    Do you have any process for reviewing your work for a challenge? For looking back and evaluating what you've learned? What was the most recent challenge that you completed?

    Monday
    Nov102014

    Color-Themed Collage {Blue}

    "Yet, it is true, poetry is delicious;
    the best prose is that which
    is most full of poetry."
    Virginia Woolf 

    Have you created a color-themed collage? It could be stitched or glued or stapled, but the idea is to pick collage stuff based on color alone.

    Just pick a color and go through everything, literally everything, in your paper stash in a hunt for that color. You can focus a specific aqua blue or vermillion red or even a color combination collage {two particular colors} where you only use items with those colors. You can be as flexible as you wish, for example, allowing items which contain those colors but might have other colors... or just papers with your desired color. In this collage I used anything remotely considered blue to my eyes. 

    The good news is that the sewing part is relatively quick. Still, this page took about three days because I just worked a little at a time between other life stuff. It takes longer than you might think just to gather up the papers - and then usually I'll not gather up enough stuff so I restart my search. 

    I have a stack of papers cut to a particular size and these will be added to the Play Journal. My journals all have names so that I can refer to them and think about them and it gives them character. The Play Journal is not yet stitched together so I can keep adding to it. That's the way I made the little Joker Journal, although that was finished in a few days and the Play Journal has been in process for months!

    November is Art Every Day Month. I'll do something creative each day this month. I've been doing this challenge since 2009, so this is my 6th year!!!

    Saturday
    Nov082014

    Spotted Photo Theme: Street Art

    This month, the theme for Hanna's monthly Spotted Photo Theme Challenge is "street art," which includes graffiti and found posters. And that is one of my favorite topics, perhaps because I don't see it so often.

    Click to read more ...

    Wednesday
    Nov052014

    The Joker Book

    “Books are the mirrors of the soul.”
    Virginia Woolf

    This is the front cover of the journal. Now you see the Joker that inspired the name. Thank you to Lauren for the retro playing cards and thank you to Sue for the pretty green & gold paper. 

    Click to read more ...

    Saturday
    Nov012014

    Tangent № 12: Linger

    “Remember to delight yourself first,
    then others can be truly delighted."
    SARK

    I was thinking about how someone unfamiliar with art journaling might view this creative outlet. Creative outlet? Art? Craft? Documentation? Mess? Collage? However you want to define art journaling, know that it is really supposed to be loose and unstructured. It doesn't really have an end goal other than the work entailed in putting stuff on your pages. Linger, the title, comes from the words at the top right corner and the lyrics of the Cranberries tune. And also the idea of allowing yourself to linger over the various areas of your page and change them if you want to change them. 

    That said, I filmed the process of making these chaotic pages. Lately I am leaning toward more, more, more and not wanting to stop working on a particular page. I thrive on bright colors and selecting images that are kind of silly together, not telling a story or anything as goal-oriented as that. The weimaraner and the oranges and the japanese model, for example. Growing up, we had weimaraners, by the way.

    1. Try working from a smaller subset of papers. Flip through your scrapbook papers, painted papers, clippings from text, images & magazines & journal fodder and make a SMALL stack of stuff that you COULD use for that particular page. Then create an art journal collage, but just pull stuff from this smaller SUBSET of papers. The stack is your "potential or "in-between" ideas. No need to be 100% sure or commit or promise yourself that the initial stack will be the exact stuff you'll use. Working from a smaller stack may help you focus. I can't always describe "why" I like a particular little item that I place in the smaller stack of papers, or on the page itself. Guesstimate? I make a stack of about 1.5x as many papers as I think I'll need. I go for a variety of colors, words, shapes & images. 
    2. Use an image or photograph to launch your page. You could pull a color or two from the image, work with the mood of a photo or use one of the subjects of the photo as a prompt. For this page, I pulled the graffiti feel and the grungy feel of the photograph into the squiggly marks under the first layer of paint. I write more about this in Zine #12 in an article about the role of photographs in idea generation

    Watch the video in the little box or go watch at Vimeo {9 mn}

    The materials used for these pages. This page spread started with a photograph printed on a Polaroid Pogo Printer. I've had this handy little printer for years and I still find the desaturated prints charming. Next I made squiggly marks {sorry no technical term for that} with Neocolor II wax crayons and painted over those with Golden heavy body acrylic paint. I adhered papers and then made marks and scrapes in the still-wet acrylics with a regular pencil. The words, doodles and circles were drawn with a dip pen and Golden high flow acrylics. I'm really sorry to tell you that the video cut off the last few minutes of those repeating white circles. This is an Exacompta Basics Journal.

    To see all of the videos in the Art Journaling Tangents & Tactics series see the index

    Wednesday
    Oct292014

    Prompt Cards with Sapphire Blue

    You never know what will happen around here. My 12 yr old daughter {henceforth known as Sapphire Blue} challenged herself to make a bunch of art journal pages using art journal prompt cards. And yes, the prompt cards are back in the Etsy shop. We had been organizing the cards and putting them in sets and she started asking how they worked. So I showed her some pages I'd done and how I used the words, one by one, and she whipped out a bunch of cool stuff. So here are her fun art journal pages.

    9x12" bristol paper, pitt brush pens. I love that Sapphire Blue played with a candy theme, incorporating M&Ms on the gingerbread house and a little mini Candyland game style map. 

    This was created from the SEASIDE COTTAGE card which is in set #105. The prompts selected were: Violet, Map, Gingerbread House, Mint, Love or Joy.

    Click to read more ...

    Tuesday
    Oct282014

    Art Journal: Groovy

    “Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.”
    Rainer Maria Rilke

    Pages from the Noticing Journal. This page spread has gone in lots of different directions with a two year gap where it sat with just two photographs. But now I love it! It's groovy! 

    Materials include Golden airbrush {now called high flow} acrylics and fluid acrylics, photographs, washi tape, hand-stitching with metallic embroidery floss, a quote, japanese papers, ephemera, Neocolors. The machine stitching is the back side of the stitching on the reverse of each page.

    The following photos show the pages in March 2012.

    Directly behind the left photograph of the curtain, on the previous page, is a photo that's exactly the same size and in the same location. So I decided to stitch the photos to the page by hand at the same time. That way the stitching makes sense on both pages.

    Yes, that's a sewing machine needle. And no, it didn't make any sense to use it, but this was two years ago and I was too lazy to go upstairs and search for a needle.

    Anyhow, it's good to have another page in the Noticing Journal finished. I think it might be ready to call it DONE after 2.5 years but want to go back through all of the pages and see if there's anything else I'd like to alter. It's bittersweet to come to the end of a long project, isn't it?

    Sunday
    Oct262014

    Inktober #08: Making More Messes

    “Your eye must see a composition or an expression
    that life itself offers you, and you must know
    with intuition when to click the camera.”
    Henri Cartier-Bresson

    Late night disorganized alphabets.

    I wasn't going to add water, but then I did. Yesterday I posted the sketched faces so you can see the difference.

    These are my two favorites.

    I think this ink & water thing is getting out of control. Not sure if these blog posts have been interesting or not, but I wanted to share as documentation of the pages I'm doing for the Inktober Challenge. I find that sharing the stuff I do for a particular challenge keeps me focused.

    Trying to decide what to do in November for Art Every Day Month. It's an annual tradition! I am thinking about going through my papers and magazines and cutting and pasting. Art Every Day Month is facilitated by Leah at Creative Every Day. It's a very open challenge to pretty much do any sort of art you want. Each year I try to pick a focus. One year I worked through much of an altered book. Another year I did mandalas. Last year I didn't even finish, but I hope that this year will be more productive.