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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Catching Up

I went back to see what I had shown all of you and what I hadn't. Boy do I need to catch up! Some of this stuff goes back several weeks. I'm still doing ICADs, but I won't show any of those this time. The season is almost over and I'll be doing a post about the ones I like the most when it is over.

The Studio isn't quite set up yet. I've got more organizational stuff in, but I'm taking it all one day at a time. If I get to something that is an unholy mess, I deal with it, and then go back to playing. In the long run that will mean I remember where I put things, and it never becomes a miserable job on any one particular day.

For example, I got some new stencils in and it hit the "overwhelm" button, so last night I started using the page protectors I'd bought over a month ago and got the ones that didn't have a home settled into page protectors and the container I'd bought for them. I didn't go into the stencils that do have a home, but those will get moved into page protectors too, and possibly into a 3 ring binder at some point, but not quite right now. I know where everything is, and nothing is so jumbled up that stencils are getting torn.

On to art journaling!

 The first two layouts were ones where I knew I wasn't quite finished. They are both from my experiments journal. In both cases I knew I needed words to finish them.

I think the letters I used in this one were too small. I'm still learning how to use letters I buy and put down, and I've got these tiny ones, and the huge ones below, in black.

I know I need to buy something in between. I think larger letters would have made me happier.
The 2 inch letters were the right choice for this layout. It actually does take courage to create things. This background has collage, as does the other one, and paint and stamping, and who knows what else. It is literally a hot mess, but those bold black letters do seem to have pulled it all together.

It makes me happy.

There is only one spread left in the experiments journal. I think I know what is going into that last spread. And then I will have to work on the cover.

 In addition to the experiments journal, I've been working in this hand made journal (my first) for a class I'm taking at Gulfsprite's site. I've jointed Art Geeks there, but that won't actually start until August. There is a free class with 9 or 10 videos, and I've been taking the class and treating it as a real class with homework.

This was the first page. On this one I used various kinds of dimensional media to create texture on book text and crumpled up scrapbook paper. I'd seen loads of videos on doing this kind of thing but watching and doing are two different things.

Once the dimensional media had dried, I painted over it. Each of the different media took the paint differently, and you can actually see that in this background.

All of the spreads in this journal are now backgrounds, not completed pages.

The second class involved using a photo from a magazine, and scrapbook paper, and other papers that were painted, to fit with the colors in the photo. I also cut the paper, which also altered it from what it was originally. I lucked out because that week's ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY had this great two page photo in it that worked extremely well in this background. Actually, except for journaling and a title, this page is a finished page.

This is the third page in the class. This time we were putting the paper on horizontally. The idea was to cut out petals and use both the petals and the cut out, and to use the papers both painted and unpainted along with some paint and some painted book pages.

Like the first page this is almost an exact replica of the one done in the class, and once again I like how it came out.

 More paint, more cut up scrapbook and other papers. I also got to use two flowers I had painted on a painted paper project I did months ago on this page and I love how all of it came out.
 This class was about using just black and white and multiple scrapbook paper (with a little music paper). I only had one washi tape that was black and white and it is in there too.
 Something simple and elegant. Some doodle flowers from scrapbook paper, a little paint that is just scrubbed on and some lnesdone with a marker.

 In this case I didn't have the materials to do the actual class project, so I used what I had. I cut out a vintage photo, probably of an actress from the 19th or early 20th Century. I stamped on tissue paper with brown ink and painted a gold patterned tissue paper and music paper with brown paint.

I would never have done a background this way before this class, so obviously I have learned a lot.

And finally the unfinished cover of this little handmade journal. There is one more class that I haven't done anything for. There was one class where I decided to do an ICAD instead of a spread, and it is one of my favorite ICADs. I knew I didn't have enough pages to do every class in the journal. But I can make the covers out of the project for the final class, and then, I'm going to put some beads on the strings I left long so I could decorate them.

This isn't just my first home made journal. It is also my first finished journal. The commercial ones have lots of pages to go, and that is fine. I like working in multiple journals. There is also a journal made out of gelli prints that has reached its half way point. I'll talk about that one in another post.

Take care all.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

What I've Learned From Doing ICADs

If you had asked me in May if I was capable of doing a tiny piece of art every day for two months I probably would have told you no. I have a hard time committing to anything long term. Or at least I thought so. But here I am on the 46th day of ICAD season and I've got 48 index cards with paint on them.

So one of the things I've learned is that I can commit. I have 48 cards because I mus-numbered one of the cards and decided to make a second one for the official number of that day, and because one day I just could not stop at just one.

One of the things I was committing to was making a single card every day, and for the most part that is what I've done. I've made at least one EVERY DAY.

 So this is the pile I showed a while ago. You can see how many cards there actually are although you can't see most of them well.

And this is a photo of the last 8 days.

I've learned a lot from doing the cards and not just about commitment. I've tried new techniques. I've used supplies I have never used before. I made cut outs using my electronic cutter, and cut things freehand, and stamped and painted and fussy cut things out from the Internet and magazines. I already know that I'm going to be trying out a couple new techniques I've never done before or that I've only done on Art Journal pages while I was taking a class.

Index cards are cheap. If your experiment doesn't work out you haven't spent a lot of money. You can try something new. You can see something someone else has done on YouTube or on the Internet, and try it out for yourself. 

My only problem is that I am going to miss them when July is over. Only 14 more days. I could just keep doing them, but I think there is a reason not to do that. Not totally sure what it really is. I'm sure that looking at the cards from year 1 and the cards from year 2 should show a big jump in quality. I also think that when you come back to them after a year away, you focus on them differently than you did a year earlier. And I think those aren't the only reason not to do them year round. But I will miss them.

Take care all.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

This Week's Stuff

I haven't done that much Art Journaling this week. Instead I've watched a bunch of YouTube videos and recognized that one of the reasons I get stuck is that everyone else out there has stuff I don't have. Not art supplies so much at this point. Over the last 6 months or so I've bought a bunch of art supplies. But things like the elements I had when I was digital scrapbooking and the embellishments everyone seems to have. Some of that "stuff" is bought, but a lot of it gets made by the artists out there.

And that is what I've been up to. I bought the Silhouette and I've been cutting stencils, but also I've begun to cut various die cuts that I can turn into the stuff I've been missing. I've bought a couple of fashion magazines because although I'm not likely to make layouts out of fashion pictures, I just might. And there is other stuff to cut out of the magazines. like words and phrases, and small pictures, and even squares of colorful images that you won't be able to tell came from a magazine. I might just be doing some of that on the Silhouette. Not sure how it will react to magazine pages as paper, but we will see.

I've just gotten a new book that is sending me off on even more of this making it stuff. For example I have an old vintage book that I bought because it was a favorite childhood craft book. I think it is older than I am. It was all about making costume dolls out of paper mache. I'm not likely to ever make the dolls. My attempts at age 12 were pretty awful, but I just loved the book. It has illustrations of the dolls. I'm going to be copying the drawings, and I might even color some of them and use both the plain ones and the colored ones as collage sheets. The art journaling book has multiple ideas on how to make collage sheets, and using drawings like the ones in the doll making book are just one of them.

Another thing the author suggests is copying one's own art to make collage sheets. And I've got two collages that do not have words on them at this point (but will soon) that I'm going to do that with.

A collage sheet is something that one makes so one can cut it up and make new art out of it. At this point it is another thing I don't have, but will have soon. I've also got a lot of stuff on my computer from the digital scrapbooking days that I've begun to catalog. Some of that also needs to be turned into things I can use.

I do have a couple of pictures for you to see. 

 It is ICAD season. In June and July, every year, the Art Journaling community does little pieces of art on index cards. At this point I've done at least one every day. I did two only once so far. I've learned a lot. The early ones were nothing to write home to mother about. The newer ones have been much better. I've got things I printed and cut using the Silhouette on a couple of the newer ones.

And on the newest one, the one with the 35 on it, I've got a hand made flower embellishment.
There has been a sudden craze in some of the groups I've been following on Facebook for hand cut and decorated flowers. So far I've only decorated a few, but here is a stack of flowers cut out of book pages and Gelli prints waiting for their turn with the markers.

This also has been part of my element/embellishment journey.

The messy drop paper in my art area is on purpose. Pretty soon it will get to the point where I will turn it into an intentional painted and collaged paper. Which I will use to make more embellishments and elements. More circles. More squares and more flowers.

Take care all.