Monday, 20 February 2012

Book of Days 2012

I mentioned yesterday joining a wonderful new group for art journalling, this group is called Book of Days 2012. It started at the beginning of January so I'm a bit late but that doesn't matter you can join anytime. Also its FREE to join, though you can pay a very small amount to join a premium class to if you wish. Run by a wonderfully kind lady called 'Effy' who does a weekly video to show you lots of tips on how to do so much with mixed media and your art journal.
Not only that, but there is also a facebook group full of wonderful members giving support and encouragement to each other, and a flickr page to show off your works and look at others.

So, I set to work creating a new handmade journal just for this... taking a redundant book I no longer use and covering with brown paper, not one of my better ideas as brown paper didnt really like gesso.

Then I had a play to decorate the cover. Might have been an idea if I had waited for my introductory email from Effy who shows you how to do this much better, so for my next book I will follow her advice, but still there is no right or wrong way to do things, just have fun doing it.

Not having had the best of weekends my first page was not such a happy one, so we will leave that one out. This is my second page I did today, you see I am practicing painting my girls, and still need plenty more practice - but this is more of a fun and less stresful way to do it.

I think I did get far too stressed trying to master everything, and need to take some time out to relax a bit - so this is just right for me at this time.

So, if anyone fancies starting an art journal, this is just the best place to start, follow the link and take a look for yourself - Book of Days

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Happy Birthday Julie

Its my oldest friends birthday today. See just how lucky she is to have a handmade birthday card, one of my earlier girls so not as good as they are getting, but I started a while back trying to make the card, and this was take 3. Didnt get to see Julie today as she was still in bed when I called with her card and pressie, at 11am!! alright for some, I was on the way back from walking the dogs on the beach then.

I have joined the most fabulous new group for art journalling, so hope to find time to tell you about that next. Just what I needed to share what I do and find an awful lot of help and support, and so much to do there too. Its called 'Book of Days' so yesterday I made a new art journal for it and did myh first page today, starting to feel better already so hopefully I might even get back to running my Etsy shop soon, and joining in with the Crafty Folk team.

I bought Julie some art stuff for her birthday, so am expecting great things to share with you in the future from her, no excuses now. I also forgot to buy some wrapping paper so I made that too yesterday, brown paper and decoupage, with handmade gift tag.

Glad you liked it Julie, and its great to put in the effort for someone who appreciates it, I dont know too many people who would. Look forward to seeing you later in the week mate, thats if you are adjusting to this great old age ok:)

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Sad Sketching

One of those days today with very little time to do much, so I decided to just try out some sketching. Its called sad sketching as I am sad today, dont worry nothing drastic or earth shattering, just yet another occasion of people I thought were friends and could trust turning out to be not what they seemed - I can never understand how people can be so nasty to others, does it make them happy? What irritates me more is why I am always so suprised by this.

Anyway, as it turned out this lack of quality time and miseries turned out to be quiet good, well I think so (for me). Remember not so long ago I couldnt manage a matchstick man/woman. So, before I totally distroy these works with paint (not quite got to grips with that yet) I thought I had better take their picture of how they started, in order of my days practice. The first one was mainly 'eyes practice' and just to be sure I didnt ruin her with paint I coloured her in with coloured pencil for a change.

The next one is a real features practice, not happy with the noses I do, so been trying to improve them. Couldnt decide what to dress her in so she matches me today, going to try painting her in the next day or so.

The last one I was quite pleased with, this is the look I am trying to achieve - now whether or not I can do it again remains to be seen, and what happens to the poor girl once I attack her with paint is another point - but still I like her so far.

So that was my arty day today, still not finished the orange peril - my supplies didnt turn up till today and not enough time on Thurs/Fri/Sat to do much - also now wondering whether to add one of my ladies to it... decisions, decisions...

Think I might do some more sketching this evening. Sorry I havent been on any forums today, will try catch up in a day or so when feeling brighter.

Hope everyone is having a great and productive time.


Tuesday, 14 February 2012

All About Layers?

I am still TRYING!! Lucky enough to have met some truly wonderful people out there in the art world who are teaching me about this layer lark in mixed media. Each time I do one it goes horribly wrong, so I have been advised to show each layer as I go along, so we can all see what happens. Everyone else can enjoy watching just how much mess I can make each day.

I started out with my latest toys that I love, they are Derwent Inktense pencils, so you start off simply scribbling about with them - good eh?

Then, just add some water.. yes, just water and they turn into bright ink

Next I added a bit of collage, just a few paper scraps..

Then out with the paint brush and Acrylic paints, and stamps

Finishing off day one once it was all dry with an indian ink pen and nib, adding a bit of doodling...

I think I know were I am heading... just waiting on the postman for the next bit of collage etc, wonder just how badly I can get it to turn out this time LOL. Also working on a birthday card, but think I need stronger card so it can stand up.. Talking of which, today is of course Valentines Day and Also my wedding anniversary, my Mum makes cards in her free time, she is very good. This is what she made for us today, has my favourite things on the front, nice glass of wine or two and my dogs.

Hope everyone is having a lovely day today, I will update what happens next on the orange peril when its done, fingers crossed.


Sunday, 5 February 2012

Still trying to relax more

Bit like buses really, no blog for ages then 3 at once. I have joined an on-line mixed media group, so I take pictures and load them each day, therefore they are ready to pop on here and only takes a mo. Besides, I do like to keep you all entertained, and the more of my attempts you see the more you know you can do this too, and probably much better LOL.
So, OH tells me I am trying to hard again and need to chill out and just enjoy what I am doing without worrying about whether or not I will create the next masterpiece. Today has been just that and my creation of Freda the Fish and her dancing friends now has him quite concerned the plot is on its way down the road - I thought it was fun turning my silver slodgy circles into little dancing characters, poor Freda was not as whimsy as she should have been, my head had her more floaty I dont quite have the hang of that yet...

Now although Teddy is not the best he did teach my how to free draw with charcoal on layers today, was a bit scary but improvement on the outlines than ink I think so might be having another go at this, I had quite a time playing with charcoal today basically just making marks to try get some control.

Lasty is today's Art Journal entry, I have joined a few groups on this too so sorry you may well be subjected to viewing some waffle in the journal from time to time, Art Journals are great for daily practice. Tomorrows pages are currently gesso coated in readiness for then, not that I have a clue what I am doing yet if anything.. as spending most of the morning having to split up all the dog walking with having no car then the afternoon awaiting the fix-it man, not ideal to start any painting so hoping there will be some time left afterwards.

We were lucky enough not to get any snow here over the weekend, though it was very chilly earlier with freezing fog and ice, the pavements were deadly - good job I just walk my oldest dog first thing, although I was slower than her today and the penguin style walking is not kind to the legs. The local park walk with them all later on was ok, still icy and both Alfie and Jaja managed to fall over on the ice, the old lady Tess had more sense though and avoided the slippery parts.

Hoping we get a few warmer days in, I'm told the freeze is back for next weekend though, bbbbbbbbbrrrrrrrrrrr.


Saturday, 4 February 2012

Oh dear, well I tried

As I said yesterday I had this great idea to make some bookmarks, so last night they were all cut out and gesso added ready to begin today. Still on the mixed media, aka make a big mess and try turn it into something nice? well... I made the mess! Not quite turned out as I had hoped and still not finished, but I will continue anyway to be sure my idea works even though the design clearly does not, YET.

The OH has informed me I have gone back to trying to hard, I must just enjoy and stop trying... not quite so easy as catastrophe struck last night on his return with his car on the back of the flatbed AA truck. As if that wasn't bad enough he went out to move my car to clear space and my back rear window exploded! so we currently have both vehicles off the road with hefty repair bills each. Of course on the bright side, thank heavens it happened last night and not today when the dogs were in the car, doesnt bare thinking about.

But, doesnt help my 'trying to hard' thing as these darn cars need paying for and unless I start shaping myself in some way I will be out of funds for my next tub of gesso! not to mention (get this) after reading Zoe's blog, seems I also need some 'Modge Podge' (bet that blew your mind Mick)..

Before I started on the Greyhounds today I first tried in my Art Journal, you see I have the 'theory' just cant quite get the effect I wish onto the paper. As my illustrator friend says 'PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE' better go do some more, just some light sketching tonight see if I can improve that.

No snow here as yet, but an awful lot of rain - just right for nice loooong dog walks now I have no car for a few days, and there I was worried about driving in it not a problem now. Every cloud and all that..

Thats all for now, lets see what tomorrow brings.


Friday, 3 February 2012

Mixed Media and Collage

My Goodness, its 9 days since I last blogged - were on earth did they go? During that time I have been learning all about mixed media and art journals, what fun it is too. Having started following a few of the experts on their blogs I have finally worked out what its all about, that is lots of layers and even collage (remember that?) some more books and products later and here are the first things I have come up with. I am quite fond of my penguins, here is a closer look at them.

I am trying to design a birthday card for a friend (and one day maybe even for sale) not quite got there yet, but more fun had trying.

This one had my most layers, collage and stamps ever - I realise I do still have more to go, and of course more practice at faces and fleshtone, it would also have helped if my ink hadnt decided to blotch on me.. cant tell you just how much fun this is to do, I'm told more practice is what helps you get plenty of that going on..

I really must go clean up though, had so much fun this week the OH was away on a course so I had more time and space as totally demolishing the kitchen work tops with paint, glue and my latest discovery 'gesso' was fantastic and he will be back in a few hours, eeeeeeeeek. That and much less PC time, as I the neck and shoulder pain is worse when I am on here, so OH has promised to sort that out this weekend, something to do with chair and space he thinks.

Last thing I did today was make a start on some bookmarks, I have cut out 8, coated them with gesso last night front and back, and I have done some paint layers, sketches and stamps on them so far (well 5 of them). The idea came about as I have lots of books on Journalling etc and keep loosing my place so need some bookmarks, but again its a possible selling idea for the future, so see how it goes - really do need to do something with my shop soon, my supplies bill is getting rather high.. I do have some more bags to list but need to sort out my chair etc to do the photographs (yes, more excuses..).

Ok, waffled enough now - hope everyone is keeping warm for the big freeze forcast in the UK, if the forcast stays true its just for a few days so not too bad.

Have a great weekend.