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Saturday, March 28, 2015

LB2015 : Drawing on the inner and outer world

This next Life Book project was created by Jane Davenport. Her work is a-maz-ing...especially for someone like me who is newly experimenting with the world of faces - WOW.
Click HERE to go to Jane's blog
We started by making a collage of images that are meaningful to us - our inner world. I used New Zealand plants and a fantail, images from the beach, flowers, dictionary definition of "creation", sheet music and {of course} butterflies...then I looked at what I had and thought it looked a bit of a mess. I think my inner artist guardian must have been having a wee sleep ;-)
My thoughts were : it's not very cohesive - too many different things going on - I haven't gone with one colour scheme - I have no idea where to put a figure...Rather than give up immediately, I realised I might just need some more inspiration. So decided to have a flick through Jane's new book which arrived to live at my house yesterday! 
and I found this piece of a page - and a lightbulb went off...Very excited to try a stencil for my face
My friend has loaned me Jane's face stencils to try out, and when I found this page on Jane's site about using the stencils, I realised my collage base will work just fine...I just need to focus on some areas and let others go. First the face stencil - I applied black acrylic paint 
and once I'd drawn her figure with black permanent marker (and added a butterfly to her bustline), I added a green glaze to block in the background (Jane uses gesso for this step)
That background made it seem very obvious that she needed a lavender dress
turquoise hair
and I added a little acrylic paint to tone down the dark areas on her skin while being able to leave the soft florals on her arm and face untouched
Some black pen details and she is finished. You can click on the photo to see it larger.
I love that I've created something that is Jane Davenport's style, but also very me, and different from what other people created in this lesson. And I'm keen to try the other face stencils in my future play.
You can see all my posts about Life Book HERE and I've created a Flickr album for all my Life Book projects HERE

Friday, March 27, 2015

LOVE birthday gift

I have a special arty friend who always gives me gorgeous handmade gifts for my birthday. I saw this wooden word at Spotlight 
Covered it with a layer of gesso and then 2-3 layers of these lovely soft green paints
Then collaged on pieces of serviette with mod podge
some lovely found words
embellished with painted dots and inked stamps - seedheads are a favourite of hers
And now it's a lovely piece of wall art 
Click on the photo to enjoy it larger

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

LB2015 : Inner Artist Guardian

The next Life Book project on the schedule was with Jane Davenport but Tam also provided us with a bonus lesson from LB2014 for those who wanted to have some extra practise for a front facing portrait. With a mixture of excitement and nervousness (which is what I currently feel every time I create a face) here's what happened
 Initially very happy with my pencil drawing on watercolour paper.
And quite like how her face looks with the colour and highlights added. Then I started painting in the rest of it. Don't know about you, but my work always goes through an ugly stage at some point in the process I know I just have to push through. 
Click on the photo so you can better see what I wasn't happy about. We had some collage elements in our background.  I don't like how that looks on her dress - looks like Cinderella patches at this point! And in the background, some of the paper lifted - I think I applied the gesso when a paint layer was too wet. I was happy to peel some of it off. After I let it all dry, I added more layers. 
Because I had chosen orange as one of my colours for this piece, I was really happy that I'd used the burnt sienna paint in my last post because I knew it would work well as the base for her hair. 
I lightened her dress with white pen work around the neckline and butterfly, and added rayon thread machine stitched details. 
The wing details were created with metallic pen work
And of course I had to add my word for 2015. I like the soft quality of the stabilo marks all pencil here.
I had thought she was done, but leaving the room and then coming in for a fresh look made me realise I needed to add a stitched border to the background edge
This is my completed inner artist guardian - click on the photo to see her larger 
She will make sure my inner critic doesn't stop me creating. Tam has also created a blogpost about how to deal with your inner critic if you don't have an artist guardian :-)
You can see all my posts about Life Book HERE and I've created a Flickr album for all my Life Book projects HERE

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Week 12 : DLP 2015

Information about the FREE Documented Life Project is HERE
I've been enjoying watching the videos in Roben-Marie's new workshop for the past couple of days so really wanted to use my gelli plate for this challenge. I was also inspired this week initially by a fellow challenge artist whose flowers reminded me of those by Angie Lewin and Anne Brookes
I started with my gelli plate and since I knew I wanted to do flowers, started with greens for my background and printed straight into my journal :
The second layer I went a bit lighter with the paint, but it didn't make a big difference to the left hand page
I wanted to have more contrast so reached for brown as another garden background colour. 
Should have reached for the raw umber, but instead used burnt sienna - it came out quite orange! I do love the effect of cleaning off your stencil with a baby wipe so that the paint rubs onto your page...
I had to tone it all down a bit, so added a layer of buff titanium - again used the wet wipe method to transfer even more of the paint across the page.
Still very green on the left, but think it will be okay once I start adding my flower layer which is soon. First I stamped with one of my own hand-carved stamps and green paint for leafy effect - it also marks out my journaling section for this week.
Because I didn't go brown in my background, I now happily have the option of using a favourite colour combination of turquoise and brown for my flowers. Also wanting some lighter flowers so added some buff titanium too when I painted in shapes to doodle on next
I'm going to use that lovely liquitex paint pen (photo above) for my flower doodling too. Click on any photo to see it larger.
I had such fun with my doodles, but made sure that some of the mark making from the gelli printing shows through in a few gaps between this layer of flowers
Here's this week's finished spread :
Unusually for me, this page is made entirely of mark making and doodles. I fulfilled the art challenge of them as a focal point, and the page came quite quickly into focus.
If you like mark making, you might like to check out Traci Bautista's bonus video on her blog HERE. It's a continuation from Lesson 3 of her free Strathmore workshop and she shares some fun ways to add handmade stamps and stencils over your printing.
You can see all my posts about the Documented Life project HERE and I've created a Flickr album for all my Documented Life 2015 spreads HERE.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Gelli printing : new class excitement!

So excited to see that Roben-Marie Smith has just launched a new gelli print making online workshop called Printmaker Pro.
It is on special until Sunday and I have signed up immediately! I took her Mixed Media Mayhem class and it was fabulous. She shares a great deal of information and her videos are very professional. She is also very helpful with responding to questions you may have along the way. I loved what I saw in this gelli printing video she produced a couple of years ago and am excited to see what she has learned since then. 
Go here for all the information to sign up including preview video and lovely photos of her printing work - and it's on special until Sunday US$5 off.
How am I going to fit this in with my other classes you might wonder?!...I think this will fit very well with my Documented Life weekly challenge - I used my gelli plate as layers in my journal in weeks 9 and 10. This class will give me more ideas for general journal pages, and lots of fun papers to use for collage, card making and my other mixed media art. I love that she also includes stitch in her projects.
You make 2 lovely minis and a larger folder to stash all the lovely printing as part of this class : 

Both of these images by Roben-Marie Smith
I love my gelli plate but know I don't use it enough - this will help enthuse me I am sure!
If you are interested in printing but don't have a gelli plate yet, there are other options. You can make your own : there's a recipe here - I might try making a round one
Check out Traci Bautista's FREE 3 part class at Strathmore where she shows how you can use a paper palettea glass plate or even plastic page protectors
This Strathmore class stays open now until the end of the year - some great ideas for beginner and to stretch yourself as well.
Hope you have a great weekend with time to have some creative fun. Talk to you again soon.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Week 11 : DLP 2015

Information about the FREE Documented Life Project is HERE.
The theme for March is doodles and mark making, and this week's challenge was about borders : 
This was a challenge that I contemplated for a while before starting. Inspired by borders as the idea of a frame - seeing outside the border - pushing your boundaries, but not at all inspired by the song lyrics. Eventually I decided I just had to somehow start, so I laid down a collage of paper and serviettes, leaving a blank border around them although no idea what I'll do with that space...
The pink is quite bright and I am thinking I want to do another face, so I apply gesso with brayer to tone that paper layer down, and also stamp with gesso - have you seen this youtube about Gesso with Jane Davenport? Some nice ideas.
Thought that glimmer mists would be nice colour for my next layer, but was almost finished the bottle of Delphinium. 
So I sprayed with the green, and sponged on with the soft purple - you can see in this photo why they have "glimmer" in their name (click on any photo to see it larger)
In Life Book I have been watching more lessons about faces, so thought I would practice again in this journal. 
Then I added doodled marks in her hair
a quote within her hair (Emily Dickinson)
more doodles in a couple of the borders
and with my own quote inspired by Guillaume Apollinaire I finished my spread
You can see all my posts about this project HERE and I've created a Flickr album for all my Documented Life 2015 spreads HERE.
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