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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

LB2016 : The Simple things

A bonus lesson from Life Book 2016 with Angela Kennedy called "The Simple Things" caught my attention the other day. She did a deceptively simple face using mainly just a stabilo watersoluble pencil blended with water for shading and I'd watched the video with interest. 
Yesterday, after a lovely extended family lunch, I had some time to create, but wasn't feeling 100% and disappointed myself by wasting time on the computer instead. I'd been looking at the Documented Life latest PAC prompt which was "Celebrate White Space" and as my husband left to buy takeaways, I decided that in the 20 minutes he'd be gone, I'd just have a go at that lesson. I had no expectations that I'd create anything great - just that I had a piece of watercolour paper lying on my desk : 6" x 8" (with some bits of colour splatter) and I thought I'd just pick up my pencil and see what I got.  I fully expected that I'd start, not be happy with it, and throw it in the bin. I didn't rewatch Angela's lesson and my face looks nothing like hers, but I quite liked the face that appeared within a few minutes - she seems to be looking at me with kindness and reminding me to not be so hard on myself - I wrote this in my daily journal on Thursday night last week : 
Added a bit of colour with my graphitints - used the Port for her cheeks and Aubergine for the jersey
and then it was time to add finishing touches - just a little more shading and a stitched frame. The lesson was appropriately named - the simple act of doing this face made me feel so much better that I'd found time to create art, and satisfied that I've fulfilled the DLP challenge for this week - it's no small feat for me to leave some white space! She reminds me to give myself a break, that nothing's perfect, that sometimes I need some "blob" time, while giving me hope that I'd be able to get stuck into another art "something" the next day (which I'm happy to report did happen). I am very much looking forward to Angela's main lesson in September.
Click on the photo to see it larger, or go HERE to see my Flickr album of all my Life Book 2016 projects. You can see all my posts about Life Book this year HERE.

Monday, March 28, 2016

DLP (Leaves and Splatter) and my daily art journal

I enjoyed my spray paint experience so much for my  mandala life book lesson that I had to turn the page and spray the background for my next daily journaling space :
When I last shared my new enthusiasm for making Pocket Art Cards (PACs) inspired by this year's Documented Life Project, I shared these card bases, and completed the left card :
I got distracted by doing larger projects in my art journal, so by the time I was ready to work on the right card base for a PAC, I decided to combine prompts for Weeks 1 & 2 for March. Here's "going splatter crazy" and "add leaves"
Appropriate to start this spread with that card since our Autumn equinox was March 20th here in New Zealand. Although we are having slightly cooler nights so it's easier to sleep, we are still having wonderfully warm temperatures during the day, so while I am looking forward to changing my wardrobe, I'm happy to stay in my summer clothes a while longer :-) 
For the rest of this spread I had fun adding more stencil headings for my days
plus general stencil play
and including bits of handmade tape and this bit of torn butterfly serviette which otherwise would have been binned.
Photos like my paper mache tea cups (see my previous post) 
help keep a record of projects that don't go in my art journal. 
You can keep all sorts in a daily journal. I found this skeletal leaf outside our door - I guess Autumn IS on its way
and we finally watched this great movie with my 11-year-old 
So many clever levels - the adults in our household loved it too :-)
Love this art by Henri-Charles Manguin : 
It's called "Siesta in the rocking chair" and my friend had given me a bookmark featuring a part of it that was perfect to include on my page to set the scene for Easter weekend. Good Friday was a time for jobs, and I didn't want to cover up all that lovely spray paint, so instead included small photos of the day
The rest of my weekend thus far has been lovely time with family. Still have tomorrow off from school, so still some time and energy for art this long weekend I'm hoping. For now, here's my latest completed spread
Click on any photo to see it larger. You can see my Flickr album with all my daily journaling spreads HERE. You can find out more about DLP 2016 the unPlanner HERE.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Paper mache teacups

When we had a play day earlier this month for a friend's birthday, we made a start on paper mache teacups. You might remember this photo from one of my daily journal pages
The FREE pattern is from Ann Wood and available HEREI brought home some extra wallpaper paste, and went on to add to my bases - first a layer of small book text.
Then time to add colour - I chose to add serviettes to mine, and this was what I used to add colour to the large cup.
The large cup is 8cm high and the mouth of the cup 10cm looking down on it. The original pattern was for the small cup, but I enlarged just for fun.
I enjoy adding found words - I discovered the perfect sentence in a large print book, and was able to use a couple of tags from actual tea bags on the small cup.
And I ♥ the glitter effect
Here they are side by side - I don't care that they are a bit wonky. 
They make me smile.
Hope you have lots to make you smile this lovely long Easter weekend.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

LB2016 : Finding Centre with Mandalas

Another Life Book 2016 lesson to love - layers and stencils and sumptuous colour. This time with Faith Evans Sills - take a peek at her Life Book lesson HERE and check out her gallery of beautiful mandalas HERE.
I created a collage with lovely papers and not too much thought - figured it will mostly be covered with sprays anyway!
Initial gatherings of stencils, but needed more circular ones. Next photo I'm already to go, set up outside on the grass on a beautiful sunny day. Limited spray colours but excited to see what I can do with them
In progress
Maybe should have stopped there now I look at it again! But with me more is more ;-)
As predicted, can't really see anything left of the collage beneath - thank goodness for blogging and progress photos! I do like that I can still glimpse some of those pink stars. Now to add my mandala
and I decided I needed some words. Looked through some words out of magazines but then realised the blinding obvious - that I should spray paint some words! I own this stencil from Dina Wakley with just the right words
The spray paint got a bit smudgy on "transform" but I really like how it looks once I added some white paint pen to fix it :-) And here's the full finished piece :
Click on the photo to see it larger, or go HERE to see my Flickr album of all my Life Book 2016 projects. You can see all my posts about Life Book this year HERE.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

LB2016 : With praise for the present

I ♥♥♥♥ stencils HUGELY. They appear often in my work, so when I saw the lesson by Mary Beth Shaw (a la Stencil Girl) in Life Book 2016 I couldn't wait to get started. Mary Beth shared a lot of techniques and focused on 2 meanings of present : "being present in this moment" and "this gift that is life". She talked about not rushing the process, but enjoying the steps and being "in the creative zone". I love being there :-) This was our background : click on the photo to see it larger
It was really fun to find words I liked in the random text background. I gathered some lovely stencils
then started layering stencil patterns with colour - tried to go a bit different with my colour choices this time, but not loving it at this stage. I don't like brown....
Feel a bit better once I create some drippage with some brighter "me" colours
I need more colour contrast, so moved to adding a word with large stencilled letters as Mary Beth had demonstrated
Quite like this, but I know I need to create some more focal interest, and decide that since I'm in my daily journal I'm just going to work with the left side now to complete the project, and use the right for daily journaling. 
I chose this page because there's quite a lot of variety and interest here already, and I decide that a lovely serviette is my answer for my focal
Used a white pen to further define the seed heads once top layer of torn serviette glued down
and this page is now complete
Click on the photo to see it larger, or go HERE to see it in my Flickr album of all my Life Book 2016 projects. You can see all my posts about Life Book this year HERE.
And here's how it all looked when I added my daily jouranling for this past week : 
After being really unsure about the spread when I layered my first colours, I really like how this ended up. You can see my Flickr album with all my daily journaling spreads HERE.
As a wee aside, my mother-in-law loves garage sales and markets, and found these 2 books for me over a couple of visits. They were published in 1989 and 1992.
They are designs for quilting and applique, and although the covers are dated, the patterns are still beautiful
Fantails are my favourite New Zealand bird
Looking at these patterns today, I think they would make wonderful stencil designs
Go check out your old quilting books with new eyes...Hope the sun's been shining and you've had a lovely creative weekend.
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