Prompt60 #37

"Nature is my springboard. From her I get my initial impetus.
I have tried to relate the visible drama of mountains,
trees, and bleached fields with the fantasy of
wind blowing and changing colors and forms."
Milton Avery

You can do this prompt as a writing prompt or an art prompt. 

Writing Prompt: The term flash fiction refers to a micro-story, a super duper short story. The definition varies; read about flash fiction at Writers Digest.  I like to see it as about 300 words or less. 

Art Prompt: Create imagery that reminds you of high tide or sand castles. You might find a spark from the color of the ocean, the sky, the waves, the reflection of the sun....


PS. If you happen to have Zine #11 handy, there's an article about flash fiction which includes a bunch of pages from a tiny journal I created with micro-stories and little ink & watercolor illustrations.

Prompt60 #36

"Searching is half the fun: Life is much
more manageable when thought of
as a scavenger hunt as opposed to
a surprise party." 
Jimmy Buffett

5x8" watercolor moleskine, ink

5x8" watercolor moleskine, ink

My guess is that I'm not the only artist with quirky habits. I skip the first page in my drawing journals {going back later to do that page}, although not my mixed media art journals & altered books. I work those in random, non-chronological order. 

I made this page in the pre-op area before my recent foot surgery. My strategy was to focus on drawing rather than the upcoming surgery and it definitely helped! The waves under the word "lost" were added to bring balance after I had written the "st" so high in the air. I'd been told not to bring any valuables, so I brought a "new" journal along, knowing that it could easily be lost in the shuffle {walking pun intended}. I'd rather lose a new journal than a journal with my work inside! 

Art prompt: Create a "return to" page in your journal. You can do this on loose paper or an index card and washi tape it into the inside front cover of your journal. Or use the last page for this purpose. Try this in ransom note fashion. You might include a phone number or email address or even offer a reward, depending on the importance of the journal to you.

Art prompt: Create a "return to" page in your journal. You can do this on loose paper or an index card and washi tape it into the inside front cover of your journal. Or use the last page for this purpose. Try this in ransom note fashion. You might include a phone number or email address or even offer a reward, depending on the importance of the journal to you.

Prompt60 #35

"I usually have an immediate recognition of the potential image, and I have found that too much concern about matters such as conventional composition may take the edge off the first inclusive reaction."
Ansel Adams


Your challenge? Get a little basket or bag and go to your art supply closet, shelves, boxes, drawers, piles, etc. and gather seven (7) items. Now go to a fairly open work-space {without a gazillion more things available} and use those materials on an journal page. You do not have to use all of the items. 

this photograph has nothing whatsoever to do with the prompt. it's just because a blog post without a photograph doesn't look quite right.

this photograph has nothing whatsoever to do with the prompt. it's just because a blog post without a photograph doesn't look quite right.

Examples that found as "1" Item. Use anything in your stash, these are just examples!
one bottle of fluid acrylic paint
one magazine
a set of watercolor pan paints
one jar of ink

Free items:
one pencil
one black pen
one jar of water
one pair of scissors
one brush

Constraint: You cannot go back for more stuff. Unless you file form 678.1-(1)b subsection 22. Well, I'll give you a little break. You can go back ONLY for stuff that is simply a different color of something you already got out. But! You have to trade in something else that you've already used.

The ZINE Perspective

To try to convey what is inside my Zines I'd thought it would be fun to share excerpts from the last several issues. These in-depth digital delights are developed for artists and artists-in-the-making, for art journalists, mixed media artists, doodlers, writers and creatives who simply want to add more art to their lives.



Some excerpts...

a) From Art Journaling Without a Safety Net, in Zine 13. "Keep going even though there’s not a safety net. Keep going even if you don’t know what on earth you want to do. Keep going even if your colors turn to mud. Because tomorrow there will be a little less mud and a little more clarity. Tomorrow your very own journal will become your safety net."

b) In Zine 13, Impromptu Moleskine Pages, goes in-depth about my current cut + tape art journal. "Once I started adding stuff in haphazard & impromptu way, I experienced a shift in perspective that launched an avalanche of creative energy! I’m hooked on this kind of journaling, *flying* through this book, inspired, working on multiple pages at once, excited with each new blank page."

c) One of the nine Kick-Start Prompts from Zine #11. "Pretend you are the manager of a zoo. You need to develop a map of the zoo, including the housing for each of the animals, signs, refreshments for visitors, even a double decker tour bus. Draw the birds-eye-view or 3D style map zoo visitors get when they buy entrance tickets." 

macro view of issue #13.

macro view of issue #13.

d) From Finding Your Creative Work Style from Zine #9. "Working in multiple mediums makes me happy! So I bounce between projects in vastly different mediums, channeling my energy in different directions. That’s the natural way that I work, and I’ve found that each medium informs and influences the other mediums.  What about you? Have you analyzed how you work? First, gather some clues, and let’s explore various working styles."

e) From an article in Zine 8 about Building a Collection of Ephemera & Papers for Art Journaling. "Paper can be gessoed, painted, cut, folded, smudged, soaked, glued, layered, peeled, sanded and excavated to see earlier layers. Having a wide variety of colors, textures and types of papers provides an abundance of choice when creating. "

f) In Zine 12, one of the ideas for dealing with Creative Hesitation. "It’s frustrating to stumble into an apparent cul-de-sac, a dead-end, a fork in the road. Try to look at the dilemma like this. Do you want to add something to the page, or cover something up? You don’t have to know the entire story, just the very next step. Take a baby step. Or a massive mind-altering leap."

g) Thoughts about Why Art Journaling Matters, from Zine 10, with ideas about how to make your journaling process more valuable for you. "An art journal is a tool for learning. When you finish a page, {actively} note one thing that you could do the same - and one thing you could do differently - on the next page."

How to get the Zine? Get the Zine at Etsy via instant digital download {fast!}

Or purchase directly via PayPal and get the Zine by email within 48 hours {manual process} with the link below.
Purchase issues via PayPal, Get Zine via email.

What's Ahead for the Zine? 

I'm working on articles for the next two issues and then I'll decide whether it makes sense to keep publishing them. Tentative topics include, "not planning your creative work" and "ideas around erasing lines" and creative writing prompts. My digital stack of articles-in-progress [in draft format] bounces up and down, each topic chirping "pick me, pick me" like the angry birds. 

Idea Threads

I'm sharing some of the art that I did in the last few weeks but haven't had a chance to post. 


This started as a few index cards with stitching and inked journaling. I cut them into pieces and these two formed a whole. So, here's to synergy and randomness and good surprises. 

I'm writing this post on my phone. This is weird to me, to do a post in this way, but a lot of stuff feels clunky this week. like having my well protected foot in a black Birkenstock-like sandal and keeping it elevated 99% of each day.

So now that I am more clear-headed and the foot surgery is a done deal... I am trying something new, for a short period of time. Maybe a few blog posts. 

This started as an Instagram post but then I challenged myself to develop a blog post via phone. I'm limited by a dreadful one finger typing speed, using square phone photos altered with iPhone apps! 


These are index cards, stitched, inked and journaled with negative thoughts about games people play. The writing is with a dip pen and india ink although the ink name escapes me.

I wrote about not playing the game. Unauthentic people can spend an inordinate amount of time trying to communicate authenticity. And it works more often than not.

There's value in writing about bad and good and all of the quirky stuff in between.  

I don't like to reread negative stuff, I just want to write it and get it out. So I cut it up and  put the pieces in a basket of collected papers. 


Thank you for your sweet blog comments! And your sweet Instagram comments! And likes! Now there are likes on blog posts on the new blog. And you can "reply" to comments by other people! The comments kept popping up on my phone the past few days and helped more than you can imagine. 

Surprise! My new article for Create Mixed Media posted while I was out... Do Something Creative, Anything!

Map, Snap, Alphabet, Free Fall

Pages from the 5x8" Moleskine with magazine clippings, maps, hand-carved stamps, washi tape.

Note to my wonderful readers: I will be taking a blogging break for a week or so while I recuperate from foot surgery. You know that I cannot stay away very long! The reality is that I've been dealing with pain issues for about 6 months and this is the course of action to get back on track. My family will be taking good care of me, and most importantly, I've stocked the fridge with chocolate iced cream. I've got lots of stuff on TIVO to watch, books to read, pens for sketching. Once I get my bearings, I'll figure out how to balance my MacBook and work with my foot elevated. Thank you as always for reading and for your kindness along the way.