Thursday, April 2, 2020

Journal Jam 3

Effy Wild is sharing a weekly Journal Jam live session in The Wilderhood (her Monday, my Tuesday morning) and I've done 2 spreads so far following the prompts. I've just gone and added a label so you can see them all HERE (I include all the prompts). I've become a little addicted cos I create spreads I would never do on my own and it's great to be led if you're feeling uninspired. It is so fun to art together - I managed to catch her live this week : in NZ time it's 8am Tuesdays. Effy draws prompts and shares how she works in response to those directly in her journal, and you can follow her lead or go in a totally different direction. 
Use a colour you don't often use I don't use brown - let's see what happens when I start with something neutral and muted. Effy blended with white so that's useful for colour variation
I used titanium buff for my light/white...At least the dark brown covered the background heading in my altered book. Not in love. I am hoping for colour next!
Yellow Still considering this a background
Draw a shape Inspired by my recent book of Winged things - I'm putting a butterfly in. Using Stabilo All Pencil again, blended with water and then sprayed with workable fixative. I had a mask in my stencil stash to use as a guide for this large pleasing shape.
Use a colour you love Whoop whoop. Pebeo Iridescent Blue Green it is....
Add a word Again inspired by my March book, I want to add Rise - and I'm stamping it so it's larger than a usual found word. Found these really large alphabet stamps in a drawer which I thought I couldn't fit but then realised I could stamp vertically - also something I don't usually do. 
Drippage Decided to take a bit of a risk and drip from the side with some kind of pink
Loved that so much that I did it from the top on the other side as well!
That's the end of the prompts so over to me to finish as desired. I still have a LONG way to go on this one but I think it's got promise.
Got back to this today. I love stencils so that's my first stop, and I have an idea about light in the background. First up - let's see how Pebeo Iridescent Green Blue differs from Blue Green! The Green blue is added through the stencil here : turns out the last word is what counts. Glad the blue went over the top. 
Then to make my background more interesting. I added more of that pinky red around the page and then layered up. 
I wanted to use my seed head stamps with VersaMagic Cloud White stamp pad for some light in the background and I ended up adding more brown for contrast. I love to add gold - this is my favourite gold metallic gelly roll pen by Sakura
Here is the page finished

Discounted and Free online art classes

Have found out there's a few online art class offerings that have been discounted for April, and a couple more FREE offerings. 
Effy has just released Book of Days 2020 for half price for the month of April! This is the year-long art journal class I have taken every year since I won the second-half-year edition in July 2016. Highly recommended. Now US$60 for the whole of 2020! Read about this class HERE and then use coupon code: birdsofafeather for your discount.
Creative JumpStart 2020 is on sale for April : 31 downloadable video lessons by 31 different mixed media artists. A special US$45 sale HERE
Here are some new FREE options : 
Tracy Verdugo has just released a FREE class to keep you busy and help you to focus on the good things in this world. Stories of a She-Tribe HERE.
and I saw she has another there called Abstract Approaches HERE
Roben-Marie Smith has a Transitions Journal workshop HERE
Kellee Wynne has created a Virtual Art Summit featuring 17 talented artists available to enjoy for the entire month of April! Go HERE. You can join for no charge but they are accepting donations to help create more programs like this and keep them available to everyone at no cost when they need it most. 
And for the mixed media fibre artists amongst you, Maggie Grey's Workshop series books are now available in PDF format. As a special introductory offer, these are available for a limited time at £10 each HERE (you choose the format for the discounted price) All of these books also come with FREE online classes, taking the ideas further. Have a look at the website for details. The original series of books will also shortly be available in PDF format too so keep checking back in their shop. The WOW books are already available in PDF format but not discounted.
Hope this is useful inspiration for you. See all the other FREE online art classes I've found currently available HERE.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Creating a book a month : April Advent!

I have an Intention to create a book a month this year : small and gorgeous, mixed media and stitched. 
Very excited last week to find out that Kasia Avery has re-opened BOTH of her Advent Calendar offerings from 2018 and 2019 for FREE HEREEven though both of these offerings were created with busy December in mind, they are relevant now too. During this challenging time, use them as a way to establish your daily healing art practice and take better care of your well-being. The 2019 prompts are what I followed for my December daily last year and I had already planned to repeat them in June for my birthday month they are so good. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Suits beginners too. I loved creating on watercolour paper and then gluing them into a book cover so that I could include stitch
Once more I want to work with a limited colour palette and for each of my pages to include stitching, sari ribbon and stencils. 
My monthly challenge rules specify "small and gorgeous". I have collected a stash of old book covers and this one inspired me immediately : my favourite colour ๐Ÿ’œ A little larger than December - this one measures 5" x 8" (the red one is 4.5" x 6.5")
And thankfully, I also found I still had a pad of cheap watercolour paper to cut up for my pages. 
I wouldn't recommend this for serious watercolour work, but this is the same brand of paper I used last time so I know it's good for this purpose. So I started cutting the paper to fit that cover and then was thinking about how I had enough to make another book a little smaller and I changed my mind about my April project. 
I got out a brown book cover and cut it down in height so the pages will be 5.5'' x 7''. Although brown is the colour I am least inspired by, I can make it work since my April book will be Autumn colour themed and I'll keep my favourite purple for my birthday month. I cut all 20 sheets of that paper to divide between the books for their correct size so I will have more than enough to have quite a few double spreads in my journals. 
Excited to share more throughout April...and again in June. As usual, I've done a little gathering of supplies to keep my choices for this project limited. 
It all fits in one of my plastic containers to keep it all together. Let's see what it looked like before I packed it in there : 
Looks quite a lot but it is limited for me! From bottom left and clockwise : Acrylic paints in my autumn colours of red, orange, yellowed greens, gold, bronze and a little bit of aubergine. I am excited to have found some lovely Golden brand Mica flakes. They will be a very special addition. My brown journal with loose folded pages ready. Papers in colours as above - in my box I have split the colours into a couple of folders - greens vs reds. Sari Ribbons ♥ - I never saw a sari ribbon I didn't like. Stencils Leaf themed mainly and in the box you can see my extra large seed-head stencil. Washi tapes I've mainly limited myself to quite neutral ones. Hand stitching threads in 4 lovely colours. Heart and Flower Brads in yellow, purple, brick red and olive. Variegated machine thread which moves through red-orange-yellow-black. I will add pens, crayons, pencils as inspired along the way.
As I did in December last year, I intend to post every few days in April so you can see my progress. Thought I would share my first page here.
Day 1 : Self-Portrait. Decided I would include a photo of me as I am now. I had one from my last chemo session so resized into a word document and printed it directly onto my paper. Then added the necessary elements and a bit of documentation of where I am today.  
This journal is not about creating fabulous art but rather it's a documentation of my April, taking notice of the changing season and celebrating all that I am grateful for in my daily life. See you in a few days with some more completed pages in my Autumn Advent Journal. Check out my other posts about creating a book a month HERE.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Journal 52 : Week 13

Journal 52 is a weekly prompt from Effy Wild (Free HEREthat I'm creating on a deck of jumbo playing cards 3.5'' x 4.75'' (8.5 x 12 cm)Each card will include stitch, a found word, and be inspired by the project I've been working on that week or what's lying leftover on my work table. See the original post HERE.
#13 : Embodied. Thinking about being fully present in your own skin and listening to what your body needs. Inspired by the art work Effy used for this prompt - I shared this with you on my blog in 2018 
and I've responded a couple of times with my own silhouettes of female bodies.
Began with the papers lying leftover on my table from my March book
I decided to use one of my own silhouettes so printed a photo of my art resized to fit onto my card. Cut out to use as a mask.
Started with some stencils before adding a glaze and thinking about how I will incorporate stitch.
My word was "found" in Effy's notes this time - I printed it large on one of my recycled papers. My stitch elements are lace and the hearts were an important addition to indicate self-love. My completed card makes me smile. 
Find all my Journal 52 posts HERE. I love to see the monthly progress - this is a photo of my collection so far. That's the first quarter of the year๐Ÿ’œ

Monday, March 30, 2020

March Meander : Winged Things

I have an Intention to create a book a month this year : small and gorgeous, mixed media and stitched. I shared my initial inspirations for this project HERE.
I paired a lovely project by Susie LaFond called a Meander book with Kellee Wynne's online workshop "The Layered Page" which she is currently leaving open for free indefinitelyI began by cutting recycled book pages into 16 x 6" squares so that I could add stitch and then pair the pages front and back to make 8 squares before joining into the lovely book format. My chosen theme for this one is "Winged things" and I'm working with nature's palette of blues and greens for my backgrounds. Here's where I got to in my intro post to this project
Next was to add more complexity with layers of collage papers. Click on any photo to see it larger.
I then worked on each page individually. As well as my main Winged focal, I'm looking forward to including appropriate found words, fibre and stitch. 
This first is my front cover with gorgeous sari ribbon ties already attached but I'm not sure of the order of the rest yet.
I wanted to include some native New Zealand birds in this one 
If you are interested in finding a bit more click on the bird names highlighted : Kea above. The Ruru/Morepork below (So sweet. We had a little Ruru owl in our tree earlier this summer - also fond memories of my childhood growing up on a farm)
Piwakawaka/Fantail - appear twice on my pages. They are one of my favourite native birds. I have had this stamp for a long while 
The wood blocks of the Piwakawaka/Fantail and the Huia (now sadly extinct) were recent purchases from Tatter Tales in Waipawa. Read more HERE.
And this is the back cover : 
Now to share the completed book all stitched together. All the stitching on the individual pages was done with the same green rayon thread but to stitch it all together I decided to use a variegated thread. The Meander book only has 8 pages so I had to stitch the above pages back to back - I only stitched the edges which would not be stitched later to an adjoining page. 
Then stitched them together - a couple upside down hoping it will be logical when it opens...This was very tricky - had to go very wide with the zigzag stitch for it to be able to fold. Don't think I'll do this again with double thickness of watercolour paper.
This is the Meander layout - 'front' side. You can click on any photo to see it larger.
The book covers
And then the pleasure of playing with changing foldings to see different pages together
Very happy with my book project for March and can't wait to show you what I'm doing in April. See my other posts about this monthly project HERE
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