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

Monday, February 28, 2011

Zentangle Fun

Double page zentangle in large Moleskine sketchbook using a Zig double-ended marker. I'm new to this artform, but I can tell you it's very calming, a lot of fun, and highly addictive! 

I read that one of the ways to start a tangle is to close your eyes and draw a few simple lines trying to express your feelings, then fill in the lines with patterns. The other day while my father-in-law was visiting with us, I was doodling in my book, and I turned to a clean page and just let my pen glide around the page while I was looking at and listening to him talk. I came up with a large tangle line, which I filled in and finished while watching TV after he was gone. This is how it turned out.

I really like it!

Now to finish the other three I have started...

What I'm Working On...IF I Can Find the Space!

 I'm sitting in front of my laptop pondering where I'm going to make space to work today.  My current studio/playroom is our dining room.

Just for fun I thought I'd show you what I'm facing as I sit here. Sorry about the picture quality. I forgot to turn the flash on, and there's a flouresent light overhead with a yellowish tint to its light. Needless to say we never use the table for eating! LOL

 Here are some of my ABSOLUTELY favorite tools that I always have within arm's reach. Laptop, Mp3, gum, scrap paper for notes, post its, and COFFEE. Art Journal page for a screen saver! WIP felt doll #2 guarding my coffee.

 Still to my right and up a little, WIP felt doll with the rest of her top laying near on a box of wool felting supplies, waiting patiently for me to get back to them. Behind them an old computer desk full of books, beading, stamping, half-finished paintings and projects, and misc.

 Straight ahead is my sewing machine on the other side of the table with a stack of art journals in progress between me and it. I've been sewing on some of the journal pages, although I did repair two pair of hubby's pajama pants while I was at it. Between the journals and the machine are piles of paint and stacks of background and misc papers, plus files of stuff. My water container and brushes and my styrofoam plate palette is on the left side of the table. The painting corner to the left I'll explain on down the post.

 To the left of me is my printer on a TV table with my drawing board laying on top of it, where I've been doing my larger painting. I know, NOT a good idea! :/

Still to my left, two large cheap watercolor papers that I've been working on for the last 2-3 days for backgrounds. I've gessoed and painted both sides of each page. Also a zentangle that I started last night in my Moleskine journal while watching TV with hubby. Great alternative to eating! Behind is a portrait of my little Pekingese, Kibbles, who has been gone since 1997. I can't bring myself to finish it.

I'm not going to show you the view from the other side of the table or the floor. But I can scarcely believe it myself. :o It is like getting through a mine field to get to the other side of the table, and any day now I'm going to straighten it up. :)

I have a very large studio upstairs, but it has steep stairs (and I'm prone to falling), it costs too much to heat and cool it, plus since hubby retired he likes me down here with him, so I'm relagated to our very small dining room, but I'm blessed to have a space at all, so it's all good.

 This is the whole sheet of the corner showing in the picture above. The light glared on one end of it and the following pictures, but you get the idea. As I said above, these are big sheets of cheap textured watercolor paper that I've randomly applied liquid acrylics and inks to, using brush, bubble wrap, sponge wedge, etc.

I planned on cutting this sheet up for collaging or journal pages, but a pinkish face shape appeared on the left side and I've. since taking the picture, painted in a face, shoulders, and hair, and I've lightened up and changed the background. Right now I'm liking it, and I'll show you when it's done, unless I really mess it up, and it still winds up in pieces. I did sponge paint the back of the paper with a sea sponge, just in case. :/

The second sheet I used mostly acrylic inks on. I drizzled them on then used an old credit card to try to spread them. They soaked into the paper pretty fast. despite the gesso, thus the blurred effect. I used a brush handle to draw squiggles and stuff in the damp ink. It does look better in person.

This is the back of the previous sheet, using acrylic inks, liquid acrylics, bubble wrap, and a sponge wedge. This sheet will most likely be cut up for journal pages, or atcs, or.......

So these are some of the projects I'm working on, plus I started two more zentangles while visiting with company yesterday and finished one of them last night while watching TV with hubby. I'll show you those in a different post.

By the way, the answer to the riddle about a space to work? I stand up to paint on the makeshift table to the left, and I either hold my sketchbook on my lap or take it to the living room to draw or zentangle, I take my needle felting to the living room and hold it on my lap, and I set the sewing machine down in the floor to glue stuff in my art journals. I can also take those to the living room to write or draw in. It would be much easier if I could work on only one project at a time, but I can't. I have to have a variety of projects going at once, or I get bored. It's not about the finished item for me. It's about the learning and doing of it, the process of figuring things out. But I will eventually finish them...

I'm so glad you visited, and I really hope something here made you smile. Now to get back to one of those fun projects... :)

Friday, February 25, 2011

Zentangle Challenge #10-Open Spaces

I'm still new at zentangles, but I discovered a challenge blog, , a couple of days ago on the blog of a member (I'm sorry I don't remember whose) of the Everyday Matters drawing group that I belong to, and I thought I'd like to try the challenge. It's hosted by a certified zentangle teacher, and there's some great work on it. I already had this one started on an art journal page, so I thought I'd start the challenges with it.

This one is untitled, but I used a black Zig marker on a watercolor paper (textured) that had background colors and patterns painted in liquid acrylics on it. Sorry about the holes down the side, but I had already put it in my journal. :/

Here I go to share it in the challenge! I hope it fits the criteria and the subject ok. I loved doing it! :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Doodles, Crow and Cow Sketches, & A NF Sampler

All of these were done with my sketch and wash pencil in my Moleskine, practice and play.
 I like to doodle while watching TV. The other night we were watching Blade II, and I did quick sketches of patterns in the background. They had to be quick; there's a lot of action in the movie. :)
I sketched a small version of this in the doodles above while watching Nights in Rodanthe. It was a black metal sculpture, sort of a room divider thing, in the movie, and it was gorgeous. So I decided to try a larger version in my sketchbook. I had already brushed on some leftover white gesso onto a portion of the pages, so I drew over it, then went over everything with a damp brush. It didn't turn out quite like I wanted it to, but there is a little charm to it, I think. :/

Clara Nell was sketched from an original photo, and is my first attempt at sketching a cow with a pencil. I tried one in paint when I first started painting, but it wasn't solid black like this one. Black objects or animals are very hard for me to shade. I decided not to use a damp brush on her. I left well enought alone, for once! She's not perfect, but she's mine, and I learned that I could do it! :)

I got in an order from Joggles with some new colors and textures of felting wool a couple of days ago. I wasn't quite ready to start another doll just yet (first doll in post before this one), and I didn't want to dig out something denim to try needle felting on, so I made a sampler, of sorts, on a square of wool felting that I had handy. It only took a few minutes, and it was fun!

I have way too many hobbies and way too many half finished projects and too little time! LOL

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Meet Selma!

So a few months ago, after seeing some needle felted animals online, I thought I'd like to try it and bought a little simple kit at Hobby Lobby. It was really easy, and when I was finished, I had a flat flower applique (see under needlefelting label on sidebar). I also tried a little free-form flat piece. I loved it and was hooked!

Right after that I got involved in some art journal workshops and since I only had the needles and a minute bit of yarn left from the kit, I concentrated on my art journals. However, I acquired more supplies from Hobby Lobby and an order to Joggles online during this time, and two or three weeks ago I watched some Utube videos on needle felted dolls, then jumped right in to making one of my own. From a simple flat flower to a doll with a needle-sculpted face is a big jump. But that's me, for ya! :0

Anyway, below is my 3rd needle felted project and my first doll. Don't know why I named her Selma. That's just the name that popped into my head when I looked at her, so I guess she introduced herself that way. She certainly wound up a character! :)

Selma in her birthday suit, front: I began with roving wool and a felting pen to form her body. The head was formed and felted to the body. The arms and legs were formed and joined at the knees and elbows, then to the body, then her butt and breasticles were built up with the wool to create the basic figure.

Selma behind...literally!

Closeup of Selma's face with a little sculpting where her features will be...
"Don't Hate Me Because I'm Beautiful!"...

From Behind...
I didn't want to figure out how to needle felt her clothes just yet, so I just needlefelted them directly to her body, boots and all. I only had a few colors of felting wool to work with, hence the color combo.

Three-Quarters View
Notice the Pink strip of hair (I know, it looks whitish in the sunlight). She is posing on the car bumper and she is light as a feather. The wind kept blowing her over and twice she fell off the bumper into the dead leaves. I tried to get her cleaned up. Luckily, nothing was broken...

Full View--13 1/2" Tall
Not the best face and hair, but, hey!, it's my first time to try sculpting a face. Besides, you can't say that she doesn't have character! LOL

I realized after I made the pictures that I made them before adding her jewelry and her nostrils. Also, in the event that you think her hands look odd. The thumbs and each finger has to be formed and felted on individually, and I didn't want to take the time just now, so she has thumbs, no fingers. Just pretend they're fists! LOL

My tools: The bubble wrap is only to keep the felting mat (brush) from sliding around while I'm working, but all you need is roving wool for the core, wool felt in colors, needles, and a felting mat.

The needles are extremely sharp with burrs on them to tangle the wool into itself, and I can tell you from experience that if you jab your finger with them, it hurts. :/

I am in no way an expert or a professional, but I LOVE needle felting. Other than making sure your finger is out of the way where you're holding the wool, it's very meditative, and an easy thing to do while watching TV.

There will be other projects coming. I've ordered more colors of wool, and I'm already planning another doll, plus I want to do some felting on denim, so stay tuned...

Friday, February 11, 2011

Doodlicious Angels Among The Pages

A few more Doodlicious pages from my first journal. Fluid acrylic paint smeared onto purple cardstock with an old credit card, a scrap of painted watercolor paper glued on for a pocket, words torn out of a magazine, and Dove bite size candy wrappers with messages on the inside. I sewed two pages together with fun yarn and a needle just for the fun of it and to see if I would like it. I did! :)

Green cardstock with fluid acrylic applied with old credit card. Torn scrap paper with lines to write on. The words haven't presented themselves to me yet. The paper on the left is folded so that the top lifts up for writing on the inside too. I used zebra duck tape to hold two pages together...and because I LOVE zebra duck tape! :)

Same as the page above, except the tape is in a different place to hold two pages together. This one shows the jagged credit card edge more in the paint. Yellow cardstock. I really like these colors together. Is that weird? :/

This page is part of the large paint-doodled pages of poster board that I did to start the journal. I love music and I found these napkins at Wal-Mart. I seperated one so that I only had one ply, tore it up and glued it down with gel medium over the doodles. I love all the notes and turquoise squiggles. The words haven't come to me for this one yet either...but they will! :)

Ok, this one is part of a two page spread (second page below) and it started out as a thick textured scrapbook paper, which I painted over. The angels and hearts are cut out of a paper towel and glued on with gel medium. The cut-out design has been filled in with paint. The angels and hearts were originally painted black, like silhouettes, but they looked too Halloweeny, so I put a strip of zebra duck tape across the bottom, which didn't make me like it any better. I mixed a little red acrylic into some white gesso and painted over both, right over the tape, to make them pink (I love pink), added a face, hair, and arms. Then I glued white unruyu paper over the skirt, used a white gellyroll pen to squiggle over the bodice, and glittered the wings. The hearts were filled in with a red marker and squiggled on with a gold gellyroll pen. Everything was outlined with a Zig black marker, and I wrote words with a white gellyroll pen.

Doesn't she look like she's just itching to get into something?

This page was made the same as the other one, except that it's on a 6 x 9" manila envelope with a smoother surface, giving it a slightly different look, and, since it's an envelope, I can hide "stuff" in it! I really like these two pages, and I had fun figuring out and trying to get them to where I could live with them, let alone, like them!

 And I really did meet an angel in her sock feet once! :)

I still have some pages to finish in this journal, but I'm also beginning to work in a second Doodlicious journal, and I'm adding the finishing touches on a needle felted doll, which has also been a lot of fun. I'll show you when they're ready!

Hope you're having as much fun as I am with your creative endeavors! :)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Word For the Year---NOW

For a few years now I've seen various artists online, in their blogs and artwork, pick a word for the year to focus on for inspiration and/or motivation. Many of the words are action words.

Anyway, this year, I decided on one for myself. It's not an action word unless you put other words with it, but it's a word that's been in my conscious for a while now. The word is NOW.

I'm 61 years old, and not in the greatest of health, although I'm very thankful that my health is as good as it is. I say this, because even IF I live to be 90 years old, I don't have that many years left to live, and maybe even less to be creative.

Hence, the time to do the things I want to do or create is NOW, as in:


So far, I've created two projects using my word. The last one (top) I created is the one I decided to put on my sidebar. It started out as a watercolor with the letters drawn and painted in my large A4 Moleskine watercolor book. It wasn't going very well, so I pasted torn scrap papers with writing on them onto it with gel medium, added some acrylic inks, white fluid acrylic, and writing in black zig marker and gold gellyroll pen. I wound up cutting the large letters out of white cardstock, covered them with clear gesso, then shimmering gold acrylic ink, then some white gesso in spots where they got smudged during the gluing down with gel medium. I added dots and outlining with the Zig marker and stamped dancing mice to make it fun. I like it a lot now. :)

The first one I did (bottom) in the Moleskine journal by applying leftover paint with an old credit card and drawing in the letters. The largest letters are painted, then outlined and "stitched" with metallic pens, which I also used to fill in the smaller letters. I wish the metallics showed up better in the scans, but unfortunately they don't. :/ I love dragonflies, so I stamped a couple onto the NOW and added a couple of sponge stamped hearts for a bit of whimsy.

I plan to apply this word liberally this year, so look for it in future projects. OK? :)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Doodlicious Journal Pages & A Llama

A few days ago some friends emailed us a photo of their new baby llama. It was so cute that I couldn't resist trying to draw it, using my sketch and wash pencil in my Moleskine journal/sketch book. I seem to have a penchant for not leaving room for feet, no matter what I'm attempting to draw. Nonetheless, I decided to share my first attempt at drawing a baby llama. I'm proud of myself for trying and I actually like it! :)

Baby llama is an off white color with a black spot on both back legs and woolly fur.

When my neice and neice-in-law gave me cookie cutters for Christmas a couple of times, they had no idea that I would use them for everything BUT baking cookies. :) Cookie cutter shapes and metallic pens in Moleskine journal with ideas for their different creative uses.

A page out of my first Doodlicious journal, using clorox on damp fluid acrylic paint, inktense pencils, white gellyroll pen, and a starry gold ribbon.

Double page in Moleskine using left over fluid acrylic paints spread on with an old credit card, white gesso on starry house shoe sole used for a stamp, and a black Zig marker for the letters, hearts, and circles.

A double page in Moleskine using leftover paint squished around with a large round bristle brush, blocked on with a flat brush, and  lettering is brush and Zig marker.

Another double page Moleskine testing some colored markers I got for Christmas, lists, a drawn bird sitting under a Frappucino label, a 50s themed napkin with notes and turquoise squiggles, leftover paint smudges, bubble wrap stamped in pink, and Zebra duck tape just for the fun of it. I love these pages of odds and ends!

That's it for this post! I'm having loads of fun playing in my journals and sketch books this winter, and I'm also finishing up my first needle felted doll, which I'll share as soon as I tweak her a little more. Also, more Doodlicious pages to follow...

Hope you enjoyed visiting as much as I enjoyed having you!