Friday, September 30, 2011

There is a clown in me...

My latest artwork for the Supplies Me course. It is watercolours on a fibre paste background. I used coloured pencils for some details. I tried to be more painterly but somehow it didn't work out that way. I am continuing to work on loosening up.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


This week our atc background was made with glue. First we spread the white glue unevenly across the card with a palette knife leaving it a little thick in places. Then before it dries heat it up with a heat gun to make it bubble and stretch. When it has cooled down it can be painted with any acrylic paint you fancy. I used Golden fluid acrylics and they looked glossy when they dried on the glue. Windows were cut into the cards so the image is adhered to the back of the card. The images are from art magazines.

With this technique some of the card colour shows through the paint. This card was a black background with pink and gold applied. 

This is the same colours of pink and gold but it was done on a white background. 

This card looked like textured linen and some of that shows through the glue background. I highlighted some of the texture with metallic paints.

Busy, busy, busy...

I have been having so much fun with the Supplies me course. We are asked to do quite a lot of work but that is the only way to learn and I am loving it. We learned to blend coloured pencils and use some watercolours this week.

I have never drawn people before. My attempts at faces always looked weird but now I have the confidence to keep drawing. This one is not quite right but it is the start of a long journey of discovery. Now that I look at with a critical eye I can see the eyes are a little to far apart and the mouth is a fraction too low.  I am going to start drawing people a lot more now, I keep looking at the proportions of faces when I am watching tv.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

There are angels all around...

My newest completed journal page for the Supplies Me course. What a wonderful time I am having over there. If I had tried to do this page 4 weeks ago I would not have had the courage to show you all, my drawings were not good then. I have improved so much already that I am really looking forward to the rest of the classes.

The page has a textured background with coloured pencil drawings. I used Distress Inks with stencils for added colour. I love to use some of the hundreds of quotes I have collected in my journals. They say what I think so much better than I can.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

New journal page

I completed the first page in my art journal that I am using for the Supplies me workshop.  I used the angels from the wall quilt I had already cut up for the cover.  I stiffened the material and when it was dry I cut out the angels. The stiffening holds the angel together if I accidentally cut the stitching.

The background was a piece of tissue paper adhered to the page and painted with blue tinted gesso. I sprayed gold onto the page to look like stars then, inspired by Van Gogh's Starry Night painting, I outlined them with coloured pencil and added a couple of blue swirls.  I initially thought the blue swirls stood out too much but in the finished piece I now think they blend in a little more than I would like.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Journal cover

I had an old quilt in my stash to find a new use for. I made it many years ago and it hung on my bedroom wall for a long time but I was never really happy with it. The colours of the diamonds in the middle were the wrong tone (they should have been darker) and I thought it looked odd. I made a new quilt and then put the old one aside to use later. I can't seem to throw away things I have made but I am prepared to cut them up for a new idea. Now is the time for something creative...
I laid the pages of my journal that have already been stitched together on top of the quilt and found I could use the top portion with the gold stars for the cover and the rest would be saved for something else. I cut the quilt to size. Earlier in the week I was given a paper lined foil bag at a pharmacy and I really liked the feel of the bag so I put it on my desk. When I saw that next to my quilt it became the perfect inside cover for my journal. I stitched the two items together with a few lines of straight stitching.

I gave the foil a light coat of gesso to cover up the store name on the bag.

Next I cut the bag slightly larger than the size of the cover so I could use the edges to form a border around the edge.  I sprayed the inside cover with various dye inks and glimmer mist sprays to add colour. I had to give the paper a light coat of varnish to protect the inks because they were rubbing off and would have marked the first page of the journal.

After this step I decided to add some extra lines of stitching to hold the layers together more. I folded the paper over to the front of the journal and stitched it in place using blanket stitch and gold thread. I realised I had forgotten to put the stiffening in between the two layers. Oh well, mistakes happen. It would just be a soft cover instead of the hard cover I had imagined. I finished off the front cover with some ribbon, then a couple of swipes of gesso and paint. I used scrapbook letters wrapped with thread for the title. I stitched the journal pages inside and added some gold charms to the spine of the book.

The letters are glued on with Scotch quick-dry adhesive that I have found will stick a lot of different surfaces together quite strongly. I have never had anything fall off so far...

I am quite happy with the new purpose for my old quilt. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

New online course

I have started doing an online course run by Jane Davenport. It is art journaling using supplies we already have. As I am a bit of a collector of arty stuff I have lots of things to use.  The first week was all about gesso. I cut a full sheet of watercolour paper into 6 pieces to make my journal. I stitched it together and will make a cover for it later on.

 The first spread has various items added to the page for texture and gesso applied on top. I then heated the gesso while it was still wet to makes bubbles for more texture.

 When it was dry I sprayed the pages with glimmer mist so the paint would settle into the grooves made by the texture. I liked the way in turned out so left it with just those two colours.

Next I used a stencil to add flowering tree branches to the top of the pages. I used distress inks to do this because I wanted to have these flowers fade a little into the background. Unfortunately when they had dried the colour was absorbed quite a bit by the gesso (as you can see below) so I ended up outlining the flowers with pencil. 

I painted the birds with Golden fluid acrylics but they were a little too shiny when they dried so I probably won't use them again in a journal unless I want a glossy page.  I wrote the quote using a Pitt pen that easily worked on top of the texture.

The finished pages have a lot more detail added with markers because pencils didn't really work over the Golden paints.   I also added a little more of a border. I am looking forward to the rest of the course where we will learn how to do faces. To be fair to Jane (the amazing artist running the course) I will only show the finished pages from now on.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Some new art

I have been very busy lately. I have two family birthdays this week as well as fathers day here in Australia. I still found time to attend my fortnightly ATC and art journal groups, and that is the art I am sharing today.

The ATC technique this week was to use corrugated card somewhere. I used it as an accent on this one. The bird painting is cut from an artist magazine I had. I love the style of the picture. I hope I can paint like that one day. I am working on it.
The corrugated card on this one has micro beads glued into the valleys of the card. It is a little hard to see in this photo but the image is wrapped with copper coloured metallic thread.  The image comes from a sheet of images I bought at Stampington Co. I will put a link on the side.

 For this ATC I punched holes and put paper behind. You could punch a larger hole and put your image behind there. The picture is actually part of the first image. I cut it into two pictures.

 My journal page from last week. The background has drops of paint applied randomly to the page, then using your fingers apply gesso to blend the colours together. Be careful not to overmix the colours. The gesso lightens the colours and stiffens the page at the same time. I then used stencils and white gesso on the page. other images were stamped on and highlighted with coloured pencils. The fabric door was attached with a few stitches. I have stitched on my page and attached buttons. The butterflies are stamped on with Marvy metallic markers. They are wonderful pens filled with pigment ink. Mine are pretty old so I don't know if they are still available. I have used Viva Inca Gold cream to add the gold highlights around the edge of the page.

I have also started a fantastic online workshop at the Institute of Cute. It is run by Jane Davenport, a truly inspirational artist. The link is in the side bar. I will post images of my progress there soon.