PERFECTLY IMPERFECT-I may not be the best at what I do, but Nobody has MORE fun trying than I do! :)

Monday, May 30, 2011

Collage, Paint, and Soul-21 Secrets

Another great project from the 21 Secrets playground. I'm not saying my page is great, but the workshop was! This one was inspired by Tamara Laporte in Collage, Paint, and Soul.

This is actually the same page. After some emotional digging, guided by Tamara, I layered torn papers, writing, and paint onto a sheet of card stock, then added a layer of torn magazine images that spoke to me from various magazines. Then I added more paint, stamping, doodling over that to get what it looks like now.

I am learning to journal and paint intuitively in these classes, and it has given me so much freedom to just play with the process, which is my favorite part. It also makes it uniquely mine. I'm not sure I like the second version better than the first, but it sure was fun to get it to this point!

The words on her cape (I seem to have a thing for big buttons and capes) say, "I am the product of all my experiences," and that is the truth with my hand up! :) Did you notice that the cardinal turned into a finch with a hat on? He just seemed to need a little striped hat! :)

The tulips represent my daddy, who passed away almost seven years ago, and I miss him every day. Tulips were one of his favorite flowers. The dog and the birds represent various pets that I've loved, and been changed, by over the years. The trees and background stuff represent nature and misc things that have also helped mold me. I love hats, but I live in a tiny town where everyone knows me and would laugh at me, and I've never had the nerve to wear them, but a lot of my drawn ladies wear them. The red circles on the cheeks represent the jester side of me, and I do have one when I'm in the mood. :)

 I guess, now that I think about it, the cape with no openings is hiding all the bad/negative experiences that have helped shaped me, and like anyone who has lived a long time, I have plenty of those too. It is true that everything that we experience with any of our senses becomes a part of who we are, isn't it?

I am just now realizing that I had no idea when I tore the images out and glued them down what they would come to represent. Just now, as I was REALLY looking at my page, I realized what they were saying to me. Isn't that amazing? (Light bulb moment here!)

Hope something on here made you smile! :)

Me and My Shadow and Adding Dimension-21 Secrets

These are journal pages inspired by the workshops Me and My Shadow with Violette Clark and Adding Dimension with Kelley Brown. I did mine on cardstock and used a variety of techniques learned in other 21 Secrets workshops in the background, as well. There is also a lot of emotional work involved before the doint the art, and I'm loving all the different processes I'm experiencing. Can you tell that I'm excited about these workshops? LOL

The first page is my society face, along with labels for the characteristics I tend to portray around other people. I tried to use lighter brighter colors for my "sunny" side. My labels are written on the butterfly and the stems. I wasn't aiming for a smirky smile, but that's how it turned out. I don't think I look smirky in public, at least, I hope not! Reckon my subconscious is trying to tell me something? :)

This is my shadow side. The side I try to keep to myself and hidden from other people, although I'm not too good at hiding things. I have one of those faces that shows whatever I'm feeling, no matter how much I'm trying not to show it. :/ For some reason, in this series of workshops, I've been drawn to a lot of purple and magenta/pink color, although this one isn't actually quite as purple as it looks here. I don't know what that's about. I'm usually a blue/orange person, but I guess everything changes around at one point or another.

This page also contains a sewn on pocket to hold secrets that I want to hide and on the left is a flap, held on with cheetah duck tape, that lifts up for more personal writing. These ideas came from Kelley Brown's workshop, along with some other great ideas. You will probably see more from her class as I go along. :)

The faces and the butterfly were created on a seperate piece of cardstock and attached with gel medium. I have also used hand made stamps, stencils, cutouts, spray color, torn papers, writing, etc among the layers in the backgrounds.

Both these classes were a lot of fun. I would hate to have to pick a favorite from the fourteen I've taken so far. And I still have two to finish and five to start!

Connie just sent out an email that she's extending the workshops until the end of the year. Registration has been extended until Oct 1. So there's still time to participate if you're interested!

These workshops are deeper and more involved than the last round, and I, for one, am happy about this. I was beginning to wonder if I was going to get through them all before August and get what I needed to out of them. Now, I will have time to re-visit all the workshops and catch up on any new videos or ideas that have been shared and participate more in the classrooms.  Yippeeeeeee!

Have fun with ART! :)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Connect to the Goddess Within You-21 Secrets

This is the journal page that I created connecting with my inner goddess in Goddess Leonie's workshop in 21 Secrets. This was an interesting workshop and journey to find and meet my goddess, and I found her floating serenely among the tree branches with the sun and sky above her.

As I'm typing this post, I realize that that's exactly where I should have expected her to be. One of my very favorite places to be alone is sitting on the bank of our big pond with my head back looking up through the tree branches at the sky, and very often the bright sun is peeking though the branches back at me. It's where I feel most at peace with the world.

I didn't start this page with that in mind though. It is purely coincidental, or intuitional, or my sub-conscious at work? I don't know. All I know is that I went on a journey and she is what I found.

I watched Goddess Leonie's wonderful videos, read some of the discussion posts, and looked at the amazing pages that class mates had created, but I have to confess that I could never get the audio meditation to play. I tried numerous times to no avail. So, based on what I heard and read in the workshop, I made up my own meditation and quietly went on a mental journey to see what I could find.

After I meditated, I opened my very large Moleskine watercolor journal, dampened a page, and started dripping different colors of acrylic inks onto the page, letting them merge and run where they wanted. Occasionally, I lifted the book to help them along or sprayed a little clear water on them to soften them. When the page was covered, I left it to dry and for a few days I looked at it not seeing anything. Then all of a sudden, I turned the page end ways and there she was, complete with long flowing robe and kerchief head scarf! The bright sun peeking over her shoulder in one little spot throught the branches, the blue sky overhead.

I did some stamping with a large Asian stamp to add a layer. I wasn't paying attention to where I stamped, but when I went to paint her hand, there was a stamped flower right in it. I painted her face and gave her a blue kerchief instead of the green one she appeared with, then I painted shimmering gold acrylic ink over her robe and added the large buttons that it was begging for. The gold ink allows the colors underneath to show through. It just makes them shimmer a little.

I was trying to figure out what to do with the rest of the page when I noticed the cat walking down her sleeve looking all pleased with himself, so I gave him a little attention. Then I noticed the large regal profile with blue hair in the right corner looking out into the future. I gave her a few curls and a little detail, but not enough to take away from my goddess. I wrote in white gelly roll pen and called it done. Just as I was putting it away, I noticed the red/pink heart just over my goddess's shoulder and near the sun.

This quote in Sarah Ban Breathnach's book "Simple Abundance" seemed to fit the page;

"Let your mind be quiet, realizing the beauty of the world, and the immense, the boundless treasures that it holds in store." Edward Carpenter

Pondering what all this means gives me food for thought. I'm wondering if the arm that is reaching outside the page is inviting me up to float among the tree branches in peacefulness and serenity with her...

This was a fun experience, and I'm so glad I took the workshop. I love my inner goddess! Thank you Goddess Leonie! :)

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Paint Writing-21 Secrets

I'm on a roll this morning! I've already posted 3 posts of finished projects, and I just completed another workshop, so I thought I'd share it as well. This is what I created in the Paint Writing workshop with Silky Hart in 21 Secrets. Another great workshop, where I learned some different and unique writing techniques and created my own little journal. Love it!

The poem that I chose to write is:
The Coin
by Sara Teasdale

Into my heart's treasury
I slipped a coin
that time cannot take
nor a theif purloin;

Oh, better than the minting
of a gold crowned king,
is the safe kept memory
of a lovely thing.

It's the only poem I remember from high school, and it's stuck with me all these years for some reason. It's etched even deeper in my memory after writing it all these times on these sheets, but it's a wonderful little poem, don't you think?

Scanned portions of the front and back of my painted and written paper. I used kind of a tan colored charcoal sheet. May not have been the best choice. The pen nib kept hanging when I tried to upstroke. Or maybe I just need more practice. That's probably it! I switched to a copper gellyroll pen on the back, because I love copper.

I used a black charcoal sheet of paper for this page and gessoed it with clear gesso, which gave it a sandpaper feel, and I used colored pencils for, well, color. LOL And look! I learned some African symbols. I have no idea what it says though. I hope it's something good! :o

Then we made a little journal out of the pages. This is it closed  Isn't it cute? It can be left as is, or I could add stuff to its little pages. I  used fun yarn to bind it with, because it was already in the needle, and I can be a little lazy sometimes. I added a hand made bead to it just for fun.

This it open, inside and out.

I really enjoyed this class too, and I love my little journal! Thanks, Silky! :)

Playing With Patterns-21 Secrets

I'm sharing a few pages here of the many I did in the 21 Secrets workshop Playing With Patterns with Debra Cooper. This was another class that once I got started, it was hard to stop. So many ideas and ways to design with color on these papers. Some of the pages kind of overlapped with the Child's Play workshop with Alma Stoller that I took earlier. That's okay! The workshops are meant to work together. :)

These are actually a little brighter than they scanned, but you get the idea! I used a home made stamp on a yellowish background above.

I LOVE bubblewrap! Who doesn't? :)

A found stamp...

Lifted up excess paint off another page and added bubble wrap stamp...

Some stenciling fun...

The page above and below were made by lifting up excess paint off other pages. I didn't have spray paint and didn't want to buy any, so I tried to make my own by adding paint and water in some little spray bottles. Needless to say, too much water, too thin paint in a spray makes a BIG mess, but I got the idea that Debra was trying to get across! Love it!

More patterned papers...

The one above is actually a sage green folder that I patterned up to hold my other patterned papers.

Text pages...

Small manila envelope-Too much water on the left, which was my first try, so I scooted over to try again, and when they were dry I  patterned over the mess. I think it looks pretty cool!

Now that I look at my papers, I didn't pattern too many like Debra showed us. Hers was gorgeous, and I learned how to make gorgeous patterned papers from her. It's just that I tend to use what I have on hand or what's laying handy, as the case may be, and I didn't have any big gorgeous stencils or stamps, so there you go. But I loved the workshop and will definitely be making more papers, because I love the process! Thank you Debra for showing me new techniques for the stamps and stencils! 

One thing I love about mixed media, everything can be used and nothing is wasted. And I have all these art supplies that I've accumulated over the years that I've been dabbling in arts and crafts, some I wanted to try and never did use, some I tried, but didn't really know what to do with or how to use them, some I just never got around to trying. Now, thanks to Connie and these workshops, I'm improvising and using up all these supplies that I was afraid to mess up before, because they were expensive. I've gotten BRAVE in my art dabbling and they're finally getting used! What a blessing to be able to play freely!

Urban Layer Cake-21 Secrets

Another fun workshop in 21 Secrets, called Urban Layer Cake, with Tammy Garcia. I didn't have the fibre molding paste on the supply list, so I improvised. I had gotten a small bottle of Snow-Tex in a box of miscellaneous art supplies for Christmas, so I used that on the page above. I love the texture, but it sure drank up the paint!

For these two, I used a heavy gel medium for the texture. It gave the paint more of a transluscent look. You may have to click on the page above to enlarge it to read the poem by William Blake written in white.

Once I got one layer cake made, I just had to make another, and another, and of course I couldn't help splattering paint all over the top. My intuition made me do it!

I haven't taken a workshop yet that I haven't really enjoyed, and I look forward to using all I'm learning in my journals  for as long as I'm able to journal. Thank you Tammy for teaching me how to layer a cake! :)

Silent Messages-21 Secrets

Love this Silent Messages workshop with Rachel Whetzel in 21 Secrets! I learned about and adore paper clay! Adding it to my permanant supply list! I only bought the smallest package, 4 oz, because I wasn't sure I'd like it. I had enough to make two journal pages, with a tad left over, which I made little discs out of to use on another page. I need a little more practice, but I like my pages, and can't wait to do more.

 This is the beginning stage, and the scanner picked up darker places on the page and lighter. It looks much different in the last stage! :)

I used a thick, heavy paper board, and it still curled some from the dampness of the paper clay, but I think it will flatten out okay. The paper clay was such fun to work with, and it adds a whole new dimension to the page. It takes a while to dry, but it drys very light in weight too.

I also learned how to make a page mean something to me without telling anyone who sees it what's really going on with me on the page, which is great for me, because I tend to hold back sometimes, afraid that someone will see it and know what I meant to be private.

Below are my finished pages. That is, they're finished unless I decide to tweak them a bit more. And I can just hear one of my best friends telling me that I better leave well enough alone! LOL

I'm thinking these would make good journal covers, because of the heaviness of the board that I used.

As I said before, I need some practice, but for my first attempt, I'm pretty happy with these, and they are silent messages to myself.  I'm so glad Rachel taught me how to "go silent" on my pages! Thanks Rachel! :)