Wednesday, June 29, 2011

GPP Street Team Crusade No. 52

Michelle Ward of Green Pepper Press host a Crusade every month called GPP Street Team Crusade.  You can read all about this month's Crusade HERE.
This month her challenge to us is to think about how the change of seasons affect our choices when creating.  Like we pull out our summer wardrobe, do we pull out or summer colors?
I love all colors and there are some I use all year long, but I also don't make a big change in wardrobe from season to season.  Living in the Pacific Northwest, we don't experience much extreme weather.  Winter requires a coat and summer (usually and hopefully) doesn't.
But even though I still find my art is influenced by summer.  I think the added hours of daylight have a big effect on me.
Green is about my fav color and I use it alot.  And when it's sunny outside I think I tend to reach for lime green often.
In the summertime the trees in my art are full of bright green leaves , in the fall the leaves in my art reflect the fall colors, and in winter the trees in my art are bare branches.
My art is heavily inspired by nature, and the seasons have a direct effect on what I see in nature.  I love to check out a few favorite trees each season and witness the beauty of each unique season
Looking through my current art journal I find some definite influences in different season.  For example, a page created this month, a summer or tropical theme, bright colors:

 A page from last October, a flower theme which could reflect summer but a dark background:
This was a thought provoking Crusade.  Was interesting to ponder how the seasons affect our creativity.
Thanks for the inspiration Michelle!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Violet Green Swallow

I just did a simple page in my Altered Bird Book using one of the backgrounds I had already prepared.  When I can't get my creativity flowing I sometimes just go through a journal or altered book and do some backgrounds.  Doesn't usually take much time for the ideas to start coming to me for more creativity.  Making backgrounds might be my fav part of the process most of the time!  Then once I'm ready to add something it's fun to go through looking for a background that'll work.

This time I found a black background with some iridescent green paint on it.  I sprayed over it with Wild Plum Color Wash then wiped it with a baby wipe so it was streaks instead of dots.
I had a postcard I've been saving to put in the altered book that my friend Debbie sent me.  She had added the words "Birds of a feather"  and I added the stamped feathers.  I lightly colored them with violet colored pencil but it didn't show on the scan.  I taped the postcard in at the top so I can flip it up and read the message on the back.
I think the page turned out great.  Thanks Debbie for the cool postcard!
Well, back to some major reorganizing of my studio area...I've been at it a few days but had to take a quick break to do some creating.
Hope you all are enjoying your summer.
Thanks for taking a look at my blog!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Stencilage Journal Pages

I've been having a lot of fun playing with stencils.  They are especially fun to use with some of the sprays out now - Glimmer Mists and Color Washes are a couple.  Stencils are also fun to play with with spouncers or foam brushes and paint or ink.

My very talented friend, Paula, aka Journal Artista, is hosting a contest and will be giving away some Crafter Workshop stencils.  To be eligible to be in the drawing for a stencil you need to make some art using a stencil and share a link to it on her blog Linky.  You can read all about it on her blog HERE.

Back to the fun I've been's a page I finished today:
The background is all craft acrylic paints,  The design in the upper left corner and lower right corner were made with a Tattered Angels stencil.  I kinda grunged them up with some extra paint and Color Wash spray.  Decorated the background with dots made with pencil eraser, circle made with rx bottle and some stenciled flowers with a stencil I made with the Tim Holtz Alterations Tattered Florals die.  I never completely plan my journal pages, kinda let them evolve as I go.  And this time I had some die cut flowers laying around on my art table, as well as a couple scraps of colorful watercolor paper.  I liked how the bright colors looked with the dark blue so played around with placement and glued stuff down with matte medium.  Looked through a list I keep of words and quotes to use in my journal someday and decided "If not now, when?" was a good choice.

Guess maybe I use prompts backwards...most people pick a prompt, then do the art.  I sometimes know what I want to say on the page, but usually I do the art and then decide what it's saying to me.

I'm really liking that Tattered Florals die.  Here's some more stenciling with it:

And still more:
These both came about with what us Journal Artista Ustream friends call Paulaisms.  "Use what is around you on your art table".  Probably not her exact words but close.

For the gold and blue page I was painting book pages with watercolors and then die cutting the flowers.  After cutting out the yellow ones I set the leftover paper aside and it was on top of the book page I had painted blue.  Looked pretty cool!  So an idea was born!  I painted the gold background, glued the blue page down, then the yellow.  Looked sort of plain so added some cut out flowers.  Still needed something so used some of the die scrap as stencils abd sprayed with bright blue spray I made by mixing Glacier Glimmer Mist with some bright blue Memories reinker ink.  

I used matte medium for gluing down all the pieces on these pages.

The green page started out as a background page I was going to post to show the stencils.  In addition to the flowers I also used sequin waste (or also called Punchinella) to stencil the dots.  I did that first, then put the flowers down and sprayed over them with Color Wash.  (fyi - I get my sequin waste HERE)  I love sequin waste and use it all the time.
Here's the background page:
   I got a magazine in the mail today and saw an ad with those ribbon flowers (do you all look through magazines thinking "I could use that in an art project!"?  sometimes the ads catch my attention more than the rest of the magazine).  Right away I was trying to think what to do with those and thought the bright colors would be great on that green background.  So while watching the Artistic Bikers Thursday Ustream from the fabulous Oasis Studio I fussy cut the flowers.  And Blade was talking about summertime and things that represent summer so I thought summertime would be the perfect title for this page.  I've been wanting to see how ledger paper would feed through my printer so once I got the text how I wanted it I printed a page out of an old ledger book I got off ebay for 99 cents awhile back.  Worked out great and I'm really happy with the page.
You can get links to The Artistic Biker Ustream and YouTube from his blog HERE.

And if you want to see more stencil art,  check out a page I did a little while ago - Click Here
This page was definately Paula inspired with the many layers added to it!

Thanks Paula and Blade for all the inspiration I get from both of you!

If you read all the way through to here I applaud you.  If not, I understand, it got pretty long.  Hope you enjoyed the pictures!

Sunday, June 12, 2011


I seem to have a "thing" about Kingfishers with this book.  The cover is covered with Kingfisher postage stamps from Australia.  As well as a couple more Kingfisher stamps on the spine.
I finished up a couple pages in the book last night that are all about Kingfishers.

The first thing I did when I started these pages was glue a 12x12 scrapbooking paper to the pages with matte medium.  I've been working in this book off and on for a couple (or maybe even a few) years and some of the pages are starting to fall out so glueing that paper in reinforced these pages.  Also I've been taking advantage of numbers already in the book so cut out a window for the 7.  I used stamp decorative edge scissors to cut out the borders for the stamps as well as frame for the 7.  I could only find six of those stamps and needed 7 so scanned and enlarged one to get the seventh.  Arranged the stamps and glued them down.  Then stamped the word KINGFISHERS.
For the other page I thought since it's a Kingfisher I would use the crown on the scrapbook paper to embellish that point.  The image is drawn on a piece of Fabriano paper with Prismacolor watercolor pencils.  Then smoothed out with water and a paint brush.  I went over the blue with metallic watercolor paint.  Once completely dry I painted background with very light green and edged with a bit darker green.  Glued that down and then stamped the word KINGFISHER.

Here's a couple other pages I've done in the book using the numbers in the book:

The other thing I did to the book this weekend, in addition to glueing in 12x12 paper to reinforce pages, was to go through the book and use patterned packing tape to put loose pages back in the book.  As well as using the tape to reinforce pages coming loose.  Here's an example of one of those:
Thanks for taking a look!
I hope you are having a creative weekend!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

something to CROW about

Although I've slowed down some I've been trading ATCs (Artist Trading Cards) for quite a few years.  And I have a couple huge notebooks full of them.  And they are a lot of fun to look through every once in awhile.  I trade alot of cards with my friend, Debbie (she's hosting a great giveaway on her blog, you might want to check it out by clicking on her name).  And they are all great ATCs but there is one from a couple years ago that is my favorite.  And I decided it needed a place of honor in my bird altered book.  So here it is:
I had a black background page already and mixed up some acrylic paints to get colors to resemble the ATC background and the moon (which is a plastic bingo game piece) and used punchinella/sequin waste to color the background with dots.  Then stamped a crow on 3 small pieces of card stock and colored the edges with a black ink pad.  I glued down the ATC and the 3 stamped birds.  Needed something more and after some thought decided to stamp the bird directly on the background a few times to balance out the page.
So that's the favorite ATC and the page I created around it.  I like having it in a place of honor!
Thanks for taking a look!

Sunday, June 5, 2011


Owls are just about my fav animal and bird.  I think they are beautiful and fascinating to watch.  I've been watching a couple families of Barn Owls on UStream the last few months.  From eggs hatching to the young owls fledging.  Really fun to watch (except when they tear a little critter apart to eat...I know it's part of their reality but I chose not to watch those parts!).
Inspired by those beautiful owls, and a desire to play with my new watercolor pencils I drew this owl:
I drew it on a card of smooth Fabriano paper.  I had a page in my bird altered book that already had the copper and platinum background paper on it.  Sometimes when I can't come up with an idea or am not feeling very creative I just play around with backgrounds in a journal or altered book.  Then the background is all ready when something comes along needing a page - as in this case.  I adhered the owl drawing to the background with triangle shaped dark copper brads.
Thanks for taking a look!
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Friday, June 3, 2011

A Whimsical Little Bird

A friend gifted me with a set of 24 Prismacolor Watercolor Pencils that she never uses.  Yay!  They are really nice!  I wasn't even aware Prismacolor makes watercolor pencils.  I really enjoy playing around with watercolors.
Here's the first thing I drew with them - A Whimsical Little Bird:
First I drew the little bird with a pencil.  Then filled in the color with the pencils.  After I took water and brush to it the first time, I went back over it with a white pencil to add some shading/highlighting.  I was drawing on a piece of cream colored card stock.  I tore the edges with a ruler for a sort of deckled look.  Next I put some of the blue pencil on a page in my bird altered book.  After smoothing the the pencil marks out with water and brush I sprayed the page with a mixture I made of Glacier Glimmer Mist and blue Memories Reinker ink (careful if you try this - if you get any on your hands it doesn't easily wash off-takes days to wear off-is it a bad thing to have blue hands???).
Next I found a piece of decorative paper to layer with the bird.  I fussy cut some of the flowers to put along the bottom side of the bird picture, as well as a couple more here and there.  And called it done!
Thanks for taking a look!
Hope you have a creative weekend!