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Time For An Art Journal – Part 2

A while back I started making my own art journal so I would have a place to try new techniques.  The first part of making the journal can be found here.  I finally managed to get it finished.  I gathered all of my papers for the inside, which were comprised of vintage book pages, maps and watercolour/mixed media sheets.  The papers were different sizes and I put them in different directions to add some interest.

I punched four holes through the cover with my cropodile to use as a guide.  Then came the pages, a few at a time. I found two thick blue elastics (on my broccoli, good recycling :) and ran one through the top two holes, going from back to front so the loops were at the top.  I did the same for the bottom two holes.  In the interest of full disclosure, I did break one the first time pulling it through.  I got a little over zealous, haha.  I would also recommend running it through a few sheets at a time so they don’t tear.  I then took a cool looking paint brush  and slide it through the loops to hold it all together.  You could use anything though, such as a stick for a more rustic look or an antique utensil for a vintage feel.


To finish it off I took out my Ranger Melting Pot

I love encaustic so I wanted to try to get the look without all of the work.  Since this journal is just for me, I thought I would experiment.  So, I melted some soy wax chips and applied it to the surface.  I think I put on about three layers with each layer going in the opposite direction.  I love the cloudy look it gave to the cover and not to mention the texture it added.

But after a day or two, once it had completely dried, it cracked a bit :(

For this purpose, I really don’t mind but if you were working on something special, it would likely be an issue.  Sometimes it doesn’t pay to take shortcuts.  I still love the way it turned out, flaws and all.  Nobody is perfect, so neither should our art be.

Collage Obsession Challenge – The Sun

This week’s challenge over on Collage Obesession was the sun.  I thought this little piece was appropriate as it seems to summarize all the good feelings that the sun can stir up.  The smell of fresh laundry drying, the sight of beautiful trees blooming and the sound of bees buzzing in the air.


I created this small 4X4 gem with a scrap piece of wood left over from building the baby’s room.  Hrm, I feel a tutorial coming on.  Stay tuned…

Collage Challenge – simply White

This week’s challenge over on Collage Obesession is simply WHITE.  Hrm, this was a difficult one for me in that I usually incorporate tons of elements to my pieces to add depth and texture.  I had to step out of my usual comfort zone.  Which is the point of all of this I guess, it is called a challenge right??  So, this is what I came up with…

I cheated a tiny bit as I added a touch of blue to my white for the background so not everything melded into one.

Check out all the lovely texture I created with one of my vintage doilies and some gesso…

Hope everyone is having a good week, half way to the weekend.  WOOO!!!

Birthday Encaustic Class

Milah’s birthday was on Monday so we had our family celebration on Saturday, which was St. Paddy’s Day.  Of course the theme was all things green.  Our Ottawa family came for brunch and instead of typical birthday hats I had all sorts of green accessories for the kids to wear.  Here is the crew in their gear.

and our little Amelia with her little hat…

I don’t think she is too impressed with having to wear it, what do you think? hahaha!! She almost looks pained.

The guest of honour blowing out her candle…

For one of her gifts I decided she deserved a birthday encaustic class as she has been getting back into art lately.  I also thought it would be fun to have a mother daughter art day.  So, off we went on Sunday to St. Elmos Fire for the afternoon encaustic workshop.  I am not sure who was more excited, haha.  Here are our pieces..

This is mine, which I am not totally happy with.  It is my first one though so I am trying to be easy on myself.

This is Milah’s, which turned out awesome.  I was so proud.

I absolutely loved the process.  All the layering of the pieces and the wax.  It is hard to see but the wax creates such dimension, it is pretty cool.  You can get all kinds of texture in it, then highlight it with oil paints.

Christina was great as usual but made me totally comfortable with wanting to try this at home.  I have always been scared of fumes and such, but as long as you do it properly and have some sort of ventilation, all is well.  Not that I will rush out and get all the supplies tomorrow, but one day :)

Collage Challenge

So this very cool artist over on Itkupilli has a few blogs and one of them is Collage Obsession.  She puts out a weekly challenge for everyone and anyone in any medium you wish.  So this week, in honour of St. Paddy’s Day, the collage challenge was simply green.  So, this is what I came up with.

I entitled it “Sometimes we all need help to fly”.  With the lighting it is hard to see but all of the background papers have different tones of green in them.  This was fun, I think I shall try this collage challenge again :)

St. Elmos Fire

Thanks to my amazing man, I have gotten to do something I have been wanting to do for a while -take a mixed media workshop at St. Elmos Fire with the lovely Christina.  When I got there I was shocked that she knew who I was and flattered to find out that there had been some mutual stalking going on.  Here is Christina talking to one of the students…

The workshop space was gorgeous…

Check out this awesome chandelier Christina made, in Italy I believe…

I got to go with two of my bestest friends…                  STEPH (isn’t her painting so bright and cheery, just like her :)

and JEN, who’s birthday it was last week and who was a mixed media virgin (not to mention extremely pregnant)…

Then there was a mother daughter team (they even had matching aprons, how cute!) who I believe had been there before as their paintings turned out great…

She seemed like a bit of wild one, check out the bold use of paint, haha…

Now for my finished piece.  Which I wasn’t able to get done while I was there.  I got a little ambitious and upgraded the size of my canvas and had to finish it at home.  I knew I wanted something inspirational to possibly hang in my workshop space.

There were the most amazing vintage looking prints there, it was oh so hard to decide what to start with, but when I saw a random image of a swing and bike, I instantly was reminded of my childhood and choose the picture of the girl feeding a bird.

Sometimes it is good to be brought back to when you were a child and had no worries or stress and you could just be, maybe have a swing and feel the wind in your hair.

The entire experience was amazing, they even served me tea :)  I had forgotten how great it is to create with others.  So inspiring to see everyone else’s pieces evolve over the class.  I definitely must do this again.  I heard there is an encaustic workshop coming up soon.  Must sign up for that.

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

Thought I would do a quick reverse canvas tutorial on a way to change up your typical canvas.  Just turn it around!!  Using a reverse canvas this way is great when you have bulky items you want to add to your piece or like the look of having a built in frame around your art.

So, you take this….

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

Then add this with a medium or Modge Podge…

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

It should be tissue paper, a sewing pattern or something equally thin and light so that it easily gets into all the cracks and crevices.  7 gypsies have some amazing tissue papers.

Then you can make this…

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

and this…

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

Reverse Canvas Tutorial

You should really use something a little more substantial when gluing larger pieces such as the nest and zipper circles.  I used my trusty glue gun, one of my favourite tools.

I shall be posting a more extensive video tutorial on incorporating zippers into your work soon, so stay tuned…

To see my other tutorials, check the Tutorials section.


Goodbye Fall

Wow, where has the time gone?  Christmas is but days away.  Here is a glimpse of my Fall in pictures.
My little muffin at the park…

I went back home to NB to spend some time with my ailing grandmother, my lovely Mimi.  I took the girls to Daly’s Point…

Here are the apple trees I use to love to climb at my grandmothers house…
I felt so adventurous being so high up in those trees hiding from the rest of the world (or more likely my brothers) As I looked at them, all kinds of childhood memories came back from when I would spend the weekends with my grandmother.  She used to get up at the crack of dawn, bake fresh bread and make me this huge spread for breakfast (fit for a queen), including freshly squeezed orange juice.  Being the strong, hard working lady she was, her clothes were always hung out to dry, no matter what the weather…
This is the first of a series of clothes line pieces I am doing in honour of my Mimi.

Follow-up from the Faire

So many things going on this month.  I unfortunately do not have any pictures from the fair as I forgot my brand new camera (that I got for my birthday from my amazing man, which I love, love, love.  Camera that is, well, and the man).  I feel like such an idiot for such an oversight.  I am still hoping some of the vendors may have gotten pics they can forward.  I was so impressed with all of the great quality and original items from the vendors.  I had a great day and sold many paintings.  Namely the top one in the picture below.

I used my Tim Holtz dress form stamp. I LOVE all of his stuff.  Oh, to be independently wealthy, I would buy all of his products in a second.
We are already on the look out for another larger venue for our spring edition of Savoir Faire. So, if you have any ideas in the downtown Aylmer area please let me know.

First She Art Girl

When I have a few spare moments I like to surf the net looking for other mixed media artists and the other day I came across one who is was quite similiar to me in style.  Her name is Christy Tomlinson and I absolutely love her stuff.  I signed up for her “She Art” workshop almost immediately.  I am really enjoying it, when I actually get a chance to work on it.  It is sometimes difficult to make time for your creative self, so I am pretty excited to have stumbled upon this world of online, self paced workshops (I know, where have I been right?)  Anyway, here is my first girl…

It is for my wonderful and brave friend Kristen who has finally gone out on her own and is opening her salon next week (if all goes well), it is called Mint Hair Studio.  I am so incredibly proud of this talented lady. Well, I am off to the cottage for a week, woot woot!!!!