Saturday, November 30, 2019

Art journal class review

Taught my last art journal class for the year on Wednesday night. We've covered a range of ideas for how to work in your art journal and this was a fun way to put all of that into practice. I had told them to bring limited supplies and that we would work together to create a page from start to finish. They needed to come with a quote or poem or found words and a focal image so they had a focus for the page. Then to choose a limited colour palette and select appropriate paints, markers, stamps, background collage papers and serviettes. This was all I took to class :
Their class notes had the following headings : 
1. Use paint (scrape it, brush it, baby wipe it)
2. Stencil
3. Words (found in the background, do your own lettering, stamp, cut out)
4. Paper (background, serviette, focal)
5. Cover something up with gesso
6. Markers/pencils (outline, lettering, shading, highlights)
7. Stamp
8. Drip/splatter/ink/glaze
I had written these numbers on popsicle sticks and they were in a jar so we couldn't see what we were drawing out. We got started by drawing a number and then doing that prompt on our page with a timer set for 5 minutes. It worked brilliantly - there was lots of laughter and everyone really enjoyed the bit of pressure of limited time to stop them thinking too much and to 'just do it'. They have learned during the year that nothing is a mistake and you shouldn't fall in love with your first layer or you won't want to cover it up!
I took progress photos as I did each prompt
5. Cover something up with gesso - the others already had prepared pages so this wasn't a good start for them, but I went ahead and scraped gesso on my page to cover over the darkest parts of my book pages. Some hadn't thought to use a credit card in that way so a good start
2. Stencil - a reminder that if you do something in one part of your page you should repeat it in another. 
7. Stamp - I used paint and tried to add some dark areas
8. Drip/splatter/ink/glaze - I shared three things here. A : the use of acrylic ink and transparent paint (Golden brand) to create a layer that unifies but also allows the previous layers to shine through. B : flicking paint loaded on a brush to create spatter. C : Drippage : again using ink/paint with flow and adding water. My drips didn't flow as well as they might because not all my background layer was covered and the paint soaks into old book paper instead of traveling. More lessons learned.
3. Words. First I found words in my background which I outlined with black Faber Castell Pitt pen. Then I cut some additional words found on a large print book page - I just brought a couple of pages from a recycled romance novel hoping there'd be something inspirational. You'd be surprised how often serendipitous looking works
The others wanted a little more time so we set the timer for another 5 minutes but I was happy with my words so I just outlined the larger ones with my Stabilo All watersoluble pencil and then smudged it using gel medium so it is sealed from future movement.
4. Paper. I did bring some background papers which I didn't use, but I had a beautiful serviette which had served as the inspiration for my colours and I managed to use it well around the page as my focal images
After that last prompt stick draw, we agreed we were all at the stage to do what felt good to finish our own page. For me I needed a glaze to fill in the gaps uncovered by any media. 

Especially lovely to have the iridescent and metallic paint shine up through this layer.
What follows are the student pages - amazing that we followed the same prompts and got such different results. 
My page was almost complete by the end of the night and I just love the layers but the bright yellow green spot was drawing my eye. I added some Noir iridescent paint around the page through punchinella and it made all the difference. From this 
to happy to call it complete : 
It's been a fantastic experience teaching these art journal classes and one I hope to continue in 2020. 

A few more cheaper and FREE online offerings

It's that time of year where some teachers gift the world their creative lessons with Black Friday specials. If you have a favourite online teacher, it's worth checking their teaching network to see if they've got special deals over this weekend. Wanted to highlight a few for you : 
Creative bug : get the deal HERE. Some great instructors and you can search classes by instructor or type (eg Mixed media)
I recommend Tam's classes (Willowing), especially if you want to focus on faces. Her instructions (video and detailed PDFs) are fantastic. Discounts below from now to 1st Dec 2019 (remember we'll get an extra day here in NZ cos of time difference with UK) 
Codes to Use while Shopping: (All discount codes can be combined!)
50% off Self Study Courses: ARTJOY2019
20% off Original Tam Art: TAMYAY2019
20% off Physical Art Products: TAMYAY2019
15% off Tam's Signed Books: TAMBOOKS15
20% off Life Book 2020: LOVEBOMB2020
20% off Whimsy Wonderland: YAYWHIMSY2019 
Also always recommend Alisa Burke. She has lots of Black Friday specials HERE.
Ivy Newport : I am always tempted to purchase this class above since I adore Klimt and have been referencing/inspired by his work especially this year. Her classes are currently 40% off for Black Friday specialsHer FREE classes and tutorials always available HERE.
Kasia's FREE Advent calendar journaling event : 24 days of art journaling with prompts, exploring mindfulness, self-care and gifts of the season begins 1st December. Sign up HERE until 5th December. I'm excited to do this. 
I don't know how she does it, but Julie Fei-Fan Balzer is once more doing a (daily) stamp carving challenge in December. 

Check out her Pinterest board for stamp carving inspiration HERE and you might enjoy seeing my challenge of #52 stamps which I did at the beginning of last year HERE. Spoiler alert - I only made 21! Still a great challenge while it lasted and I do use them in my journal. 
Some tips to get you started HERE.
This last is some lovely inspiration from Laly Mille. She's been sharing her journal process on her blog as a series - I am always very inspired by her work and it's really worth clicking into the posts to see how her pages develop. See all her journal posts HERE
Laly Mille Art Journal Page
She DOES have some Black Friday discounts on her classes until Dec 2 HERE. I am tempted by this one...I know I have so many online classes already but I adore her work and Summer holidays are coming for me....
Little Book of Whispers online class with Laly Mille
And if you get time, her FREE Workshop about Art supplies is still available and worth looking at - even if you're not an absolute beginner. 
Be inspired and try and fit some creative love into your weekend ♥ It doesn't always have to be spendy. Back soon with some art to share.

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Klimt in the garden with Rumi : November

When I saw our quote for November I instantly knew that I wanted to use a serviette I have of a gorgeous spiral shell - it gives me a sense of wonder and awe at nature's gifts that fits well with the quote. I then proceeded to gather other elements that would be appropriate, remembering that I need to have Klimt in the garden too.
As I gathered, I reflected that for my last card I should just dig through my box of treasure (initial gatherings as inspiration for this project) since there is so much here I haven't used and don't discover until I already have my initial idea. 
First up I wanted a gold background - the beach and Klimt. Next was placement of the shell and quote and the rest seemed to naturally follow this time. Simple stitch and colour : flowers for the garden, machine stitching with metallic thread, simple hand stitched x elements
always with the intention of adding beads and gold glitter finish ♥
Time to add the backing of blooms and finish the edges 
It needed the butterfly for the final garden touch
Not so many elements on this one, but it conveys the quiet feeling of the quote for me and is just what I need to hear right now. Only one card to go in this series. Check out the rest of my art card series in my Flickr photo set or my blog posts HERE.

Friday, November 22, 2019

FREE Online art inspiration

That's my journal prepped and ready for action on Thursday last week. It still looks like that! I've had a Spring head cold which kept me away from work and the art studio for a few days. Alongside that, my computer was sooo old it finally gave up so that affected my online activity in all sorts of ways...Thankfully everything's sorted now and I'm excited to share some FREE ONLINE ART CLASSES with you today and then hopefully sharing some actual art from me this weekend.
This lesson was first published as part of ‘Life Book 2019’ but is now available as a ‘standalone’/ ‘self study’ class. Available FREE for only one more week you can get it through FB Willowing or I also shared it on my FB Artist page.
Last year I saw posts inspired by a Free event and I'd missed the sign up....Check out Zsuzsa's gorgeous album HERE. This year I'm following Kasia on Instagram and have joined her FREE Advent calendar journaling event : 24 days of art journaling with prompts, exploring mindfulness, self-care and gifts of the season. Sign up HERE until 5th December. I have some ideas about how I could do this in a small and manageable way...I also know that the next few weeks are going to be even more crazy busy than usual  with end of term at work so no promises! Share with me if you join in.
Happy FriYAY. Try and make some creative time for yourself this weekend. Talk soon.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Fanciful landscape

This art journal spread was all about experimentation and play. I bought some watercolour absorbent ground (a Goldens product) a while ago and decided it was time to try it out in my journal. It goes on white - obviously I had cleaned off some pink from my previous page on this!
Then it was time to add watercolours - I really like that I tried flicking the wet brush to make lovely watery splatter effects. If you click on the photo to see it larger you can see it's not really a true watercolour effect, but it does mean I can mix my media so that's an advantage when I'm wanting a softer background on old book paper.
It seemed obvious that this should be an underwater scene and after looking at a lovely mermaid book from the library for inspiration, I found my mermaids...
I sketched them in with stabilo all pencil = a word of CAUTION : If you've used the absorbant ground, this seems to hold onto the stabilo and I lost the ability to erase with a wet wipe so easily....added some pink acrylic so I can fix her face shape
White pen seemed the best to add next along with a sea horse
My go-to technique next - adding stencils. Iridescent paint seemed the logical choice for mermaid sparkles and magical sea plants
Almost there
Found words required
A little more watercolour wash to make the sea more blue and I'm happy to call it done. 
Pure play and not my usual, so a fun addition to my art journal. You might remember I began the year in this recycled book  
and I'm really happy seeing the transformation
This spread takes me to exactly half way through my journal - 21 spreads so far. 
See all the art in here in my Flickr album or through my blog posts HERE
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