Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The final week of Index Card a Day

I am a little sad that the challenge is ending this week. I have found so much inspiration from the challenge and the other artists I have connected with on the facebook page.  I have not had a lot of time to look through the flickr group yet but I will be doing that soon. This is my first time doing ICAD and it is so amazing and wonderful I will not be missing it next year. I have to say a huge thank you to Tammy for creating such a lovely group to be part of.

This week I didn't use the theme or prompts. I have been doing a print making workshop at and I wanted to use some of the papers I made. It was taught by Sandra Duran Wilson who has several books available. I have gone with abstract designs and used some of my scrapbooking supplies. I also used mostly metallic acrylics like Lumieres and metallic Folk Art paints.


My final collection of cards. I have put them into little 4 x 6 photo brag books so they are like a mini art journal.

Monday, July 29, 2013

More Wild Art Summer

This week I have been doing a lot of journal pages, trying to finish up some of the classes I have been doing. This flower page was a lesson in the Wild Art Summer class. I chose to make mine two layers and used some stencilled gel on the background. I used some coloured pencil for details.

I have been trying to copy the style of the teacher in this class but realised the other day that it was a bad idea. I need to do the art but in my own style.  I love Junelle's style with the free black outlines but it is not the way I sketch and I have struggled with it. 

Now I have figured out that it is ok not to use the black outlines. I will still do them if I feel that it will suit the piece of art I am making but sometimes they are not needed on my mixed media pages. I feel like I get a more painterly look without black lines. To my eye the black lines seem to make it look like a sketch or sometimes a cartoon. I will continue to enjoy the classes I am doing but in my own artistic style.

Friday, July 26, 2013

ICAD week 8 wrap up

The overall theme I used this week was doodling.  I have never been much of a doodler. It takes too long for me to doodle a whole page. I would rather just sketch and get on with the painting. I even tried zentangles for a little while (about 2 weeks) but they were too slow for me. I really admire people who do them so beautifully.

Prompt disco.  I had to google mirror ball to see what they looked like for the sketch. This was a fun challenge. I used pen and markers for colour.

Prompt pastels.  I doodled the flowers and coloured them with Pan pastels.  The background was coloured with a conte pastel and blended to make it smooth. 

 Prompt clouds.  I sketched some clouds and filled in the patterns, then used a little bit of markers for colour.   Some tips I have learned for drawing clouds are:  
- keep the bottom of the cloud flatish
- cloud shapes are taller on one side and trail away to nothing on the other end
- if you are adding colour they are usually grey on the bottom and white on top
- have a look at clouds in the distance and take note of their shape

Prompt Found poetry. I had to look up found poetry to find out what it was. I picked a page from a Dean Koontz book because he uses the most descriptive phrases and words. I had to scan the page and reduce it to get it to fit onto the card. I then picked out my poem and used acrylic paint to cover the words that I didn't want to be seen. I doodled in some butterflies to go with the poem. 

Prompt crossword.  I tried to only use words that related to ICAD but I had too many black spaces to fill so I added some random words as well. This one took much longer than I wanted. 

Prompt Jar.  A whimsical style that I have used a few times since starting this challenge.  I find it amusing that I have never used this style before. 

Prompt stapled collage. I found the sketch of the desk in a magazine and used it with a wallpaper photo. I doodled some of the flowers from the wallpaper across the card.  The words come from another magazine. 

I am going to miss this challenge when it finishes next week. I will not stop creating art though. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

My little art studio.

I am posting pictures of my little studio and some of the ways I organise supplies. The biggest tip I have is to get as many drawers as you can. It is so much quicker to get supplies out of a drawer than from the bottom box of a stack. I used to have lots of stacks before I renovated last year.

 I like working on two things at once so I have something to do while one drys. I have a lot of drawers within reach of the desk so I can grab things as I need them. The yellowish drawers hold my markers.

 The other side of the room. The Ikea shelf unit holds so much stuff. I try not to overload it. It mostly has my books and scrapbooking papers. I chose a favourite colour for my room. It makes me so happy I can't wait to get in there in the morning. You can just see my computer on the right.

 This drawer unit from Ikea takes up very little floor space but holds so many supplies. It is one of the best pieces of furniture I have bought.

 I have a cutlery tray in the drawer that holds my washi tape so it sits upright and I can easily see the colour I want to use.

 This is the palette I use for my acrylics. It is a plastic container with damp sponges in it. I tuck in two layers of greaseproof paper and put the paints out on that. The damp sponges stop the paint drying out and at the end of the day I put the lid on.  Usually the next day the paint is a little runnier but I can mix in more paint if I want it thicker.  It helps a lot when I have mixed my own colours for a painting. When I finish I just throw the paper away and put clean paper in. It means there is very little wastage.

 I have my coloured pencils in plastic glasses on my desk. I put a little filler and foam in the bottom to cushion the pencils when I drop them in. Having them accessible means I use them a lot more than when they were in a drawer.

 I like to use a lot of sprays and stains in my mixed media journal pages so my husband made this shelf to hang behind the door. I sprayed each colour onto a label and attached it to the outside of the bottle so I could see exactly what the colour is like.

 My scrapbooking embellishments and beads are organised in these little tins that I keep in the cases I got from an office supply store.

 I have a lot of these drawers units that came from the same store (officeworks in Australia). I sort most of my supplies by colour. I find it easy when I am looking for something green to pull out the green drawer and look through.

 The units stack so I have all my stamps and cuttlebug plates in them too. One unit holds my scraps of paper that are colour sorted.

 This unit was made by my husband. It used to hold my son's rock collection until he moved out then I repurposed it with a coat of white paint and lots of jars.    

Being organised in the studio means I don't have to spend half my time looking for things I want to use. I love my little room. 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Wild Art Summer

I have been doing a new online class called Wild Art Summer. It is a continuation of the Wild Art series that I have been doing. I like it because it encourages sketching, a skill I have been working on for a while now.

Before the class began we were given a challenge to draw a porch swing. I sketched mine in the garden because I couldn't figure out how to draw a porch background.

 The first lesson was to draw a mud room.  I added a lot of things that I am interested in like my art bag, camera, gardening things, needlework. The view through the front door shows my letterbox and two magpies who were coming to visit frequently.

We were tasked with drawing a girl with flowers in her hair.  This is acrylics and is close to the original class project. It is on a little block of wood. 

 I used internet photos to sketch some wildflowers and coloured them with watercolour.

Vintage trailers were the first lesson of the outdoors week. 

 I love doing these type of mixed media pages the most.

I found this quote when I was looking for the one I used above so I made it into a journal page. I gessoed the page then used sprays for the background. The rest is watercolours and pen. 

A pair of seagulls showing a change of perspective.  Acrylics over gesso.

 Watercolour on gesso technique. I didn't like the way the watercolour was on gesso so I will not do that again. I prefer watercolour paper so the colour can bleed more.

Watercolour and pen. We were practising our writing. I have developed my own style over the past year. 

 Black acrylic and white pens.  An imitation of chalk board art, trying out more writing styles.

My market stall sketch ended up at the beach. It is more like my idea of summer than a farmers market that was in the lesson.  

Thursday, July 18, 2013

ICAD wrap up week 7

Only a little over a week and a half until ICAD wraps up. I think I will miss working on the cards but it will give me a chance to catch up on some of the other classes I have been doing.  I have come to realise the challenge has inspired me in ways that no other classes have done. I didn't think I could draw very much before I started this but that has changed with each card I have completed. 

I also didn't think I had very many ideas for different types of art but that too has changed. The prompts really inspire me to try anything. If I can't draw something I just look it up on Google.  There are so many free drawing lessons on the net that I always find something that will suit me. It has also made me rethink the online lessons I have been paying for. More on that later.  

Here are the cards for this week. The overall theme I went with was Nature.

Prompt magenta.  My first card this week was inspired by the prompt. For some reason I always think of water lilies when magenta is mentioned.

 Prompt raindrops. I used watercolor and googled water splash to find out how to draw it. I drew two types here.

Prompt ocean.  I saw a drawing of an ocean on life book that inspired this card. The dolphin is something I have learned to draw recently. 

Prompt bicycle.  I didn't want to draw the whole bicycle so I stuck with the wheel.  The vine is simple. The leaves are just one brush stroke with another colour added when half dry.   The flowers are one drop of pink, then a dab of red into the center of the pink. When they were still wet I put one dot of white pen into the middle which ran into the red by accident. 

 Prompt faux quilt.  I used the foil paper from Lifebook earlier in the year to make this card. I stitched the card with pen.

Prompt snowman.  Another watercolour and pen sketch. I have never seen snow. 

Prompt zodiac.  The easiest Zodiac to paint I thought would be Libra.  

Monday, July 15, 2013

Life Book 2013 update

I have been catching up with some of the lessons for Life Book over the last few weeks.  You can click on any of the photos if you want to see them larger.

 A lesson with Shiloh, about painting your muse. I didn't think much of the artwork for this lesson so I used the techniques demonstrated to paint my version of one of her other paintings.  I used acrylics and a little pencil for this one.

This lesson was with Effy Wild. I painted my tree a little more whimsical than the one Effy did. I did an ICAD with a similar layout so that inspired me here. I am quite happy with the way my art journal writing is developing.  

 This lesson was with Dion Dior. We used Twinkling H2Os to do some flowers. You can't see the sparkle they make in the photo but the whole page shimmers.

A lesson with Tam from Willowing. She had a rabbit on her page but I wanted to draw one of the magpies that have been coming to greet us at the front door. It was too dark so I turned it into a bluebird instead. I like these mixed media pages.

A Kelly Hoernig lesson.  This one was a lot of fun and one of the few Life Book lessons where I have actually copied the artist. It was acrylics and pencil.

This lesson was with Joann Loftus. I did go my own way for this one because I was too lazy to cut out all the collage pieces like we were supposed to. I used some paper I made earlier in the year for another lesson on the silhouette. The background is acrylics that were still wet when I used a stencil and dylusions white spray. It made some of the white blend with the purples. After it had dried I really liked the effect so I didn't add much more to the piece, just a very small quote.

Halfway through the year with the lessons now and I know I won't be doing the class again. I don't think there is anything wrong with the lessons, but I feel like I have moved on with my skills now and am not learning anything new. I want to try more advanced art work.  I would still recommend the course if you are a beginner, or you want to try out a lot of different teachers.