Thursday, February 20

2014 Goals: First Revisit

I just wanted to take a moment today to take a look at the goals I had made in 2014, and see where I'm standing. I never did this previous years, so maybe that's why I never exactly held true to them. You can see my 2014 goals, here.

Art goals: 

  • Learn my new camera - I have been dabbling lots with my camera. I know I still have lots and lots to learn, I just can't wait for it to warm up outside, and then I'll take it for adventures!
  • A new painting per month - I created a lot of new paintings last month, so I'm definitely keeping on track there!
  • Start filming my art - I have created two films todate: an instructional one, and a fast-forwarded one. I like to say I'm on target there too - filming takes a lot of time, and with everything going on, I'm surprised myself that I got two done. 
  • Finish unfinished painting - I have started working on some of my unfinished work. There are a lot of new commissions that have come up though that have pushed those back a little for now.
  • Art journal weekly - Maybe not every week yet - but I'm definitely working in my art journal a lot more regularly now!
  • Build a table - This will wait for summer I think :)
Personal Goals:

  • Attempt, again, to donate blood - I was able to donate blood when we tried again! :) Last time my iron count was way too low, and this time is was nice and high, so we were free and clear. 
  • Read more - I've been reading a lot more too. Trying to read right before bed, instead of watching tv or playing on the computer / phone
  • Train within Mammography - I was accepted to take a training position at work in our department, so I will now be able to train in mammography and become a Mammographer! Super exciting!
  • Get healthy again - There are still goodies that show up at our house from time to time, making this a little harder - cupcakes and pie were dropped off the other day lol. 
  • Keep our house lovely - Being so busy with commissions and work and training has made this hard to keep up to sometimes. The common areas are usually clean - it's just laundry that is my nemesis lol...oh, and the art studio is usually a little 'untidy' when I'm on a painting spree - okay, it looks like a tornado has gone through it on most days...but that's just creative flow! 


Wednesday, February 19

Art Journal: Sweater


The quote I'm featuring in today's art journal page is from Lana Del Rey's song, 'Blue Jeans' - "You fit me better than my favourite sweater." I've been listening to her music consistently for the past few weeks while creating, and love, love, love it so much!


I wanted to experiment with masking fluid and acrylic paint on this spread. Masking fluid is typically reserved for watercolour paint, but it worked alright when I watered down the acrylic paint and took special attention to be sure it wasn't too thick over the masking fluid areas. Acrylic paint dries to a sort of "polymer film", and so if it's too thick, it won't give way to the masking fluid when you try to rub it off. There's is definitely a fine line, and it was a very enriching experiment.

The reason for doing this page with acrylic paint over watercolour was simple: I wanted the translucent layer effect that thinned down acrylics give. Had I completed this page in watercolour paints, the colours would have bleed into eachother more - which would be a beautiful effect as well; but just not one that I had wanted.


Tuesday, February 18

First time!


A couple weeks ago, I was able to donate blood for the first time!! It wasn't as bad as I thought, and I got a nifty pin to 'celebrate' it being my first time. This was my major 'resolution' last year, and I wasn't able to complete it then because of my low iron. We prepared a bit this time, eating lots of rich-in-iron foods, and I had no problem getting a high iron score - even a few higher then James'!

Thursday, February 13

Reworked


I got some new fun products on my last large art supply order. I usually like to purchase random things here and there to experiment and learn about new products and companies. When it comes to art - you don't know anything about a product until you have actually put it to paper or canvas. I will be sharing these products on another date - but they included some acrylic paint markers and some new acrylic paints, as well as some brushes. 


Above is where I left this girl sitting - for the better part of a year. She has been 'reworked' once already. With all the new goodies in hand, she sort of spoke to me to start working on her again. I have all of my 'works-in-progress' up against one wall - always staring me down, so that if inspiration can strike with them again one day. That was how it was for this piece - I looked at my supplies, looked at this painting - and then went to work. 


It is still far, far from done. And although it is reworked, the true aim and idea of my initial concept is still in place - I just have new tools to carry it out a bit better, and more like I wanted. Her face still has many layers to go - and the background has many layers and small details I want to include too. My main goal is to create a sense of depth around her. Lets see if I can achieve that!



Wednesday, February 12

Art Journal: Washi Love


A sweet little art journal page - very simple: just washi and acrylic paint. Just to show you, it doesn't have to be complicated to be beautiful! As a finishing touch, for a little added interest, and to really highlight the texture that the layered washi gives under the paint, I distressed the paint a little by sprinkling water on top of dried paint, and scrubbing a little with a coarse paint brush.


I love the little pops of pink in this spread :)

Tuesday, February 11

A Clear Mind


I've been on a creative rampage the past few days, and then BAM! I hit a wall. What always helps me out, is clearing up my art room, and especially my art desk. It helps a lot of have that space, and to see things more clearly.


Cheers to clearing creative blocks!

Monday, February 10

Mixed Media Beginnings


Just sharing some progress of a mixed media painting. Not sure it's direction just yet, but I'm just taking it step by step, and seeing where the painting leads me. Above is the first layer of collaged papers. I really like the yellows and greys together.


Next, I added a few bits of washi, and then went over it all with a bunch of gel medium. I used a stencil to create a very textured surface. As well, I added some gauze that I applied with a more watered down mix of gel medium (so that the gauze texture does not get lost among the gel medium holding it down).


It doesn't look all that great with the wet medium, being white. But looking below, you can see that it dries super transparent, and all you really see is the gauze.


 An up close shot of that delicious texture:


Next I think I'll start adding some paint. We will see. I'm pondering next steps. :)

Friday, February 7

Unconditionally Watercolour Painting

"Unconditionally" - Watercolour Painting
Another super sweet Valentine-themed painting to share with you all, "Unconditionally".  I had a hard time naming this painting - the concept of how to paint and create it was very solid in my mind, but as for the title - I kept going back and forth between a couple. This sort of delayed sharing it with you. But then I finally thought up a perfect name, something that is so in line with the thought of love, romance and relationships - Unconditionally. That no matter what, that person in your life - husband, wife, family, friend... - that they are there for you unconditionally - and that is love.


The original painting is available in my online shop, Jellybeans, on Etsy.

It is now set up for direct checkout. Meaning that if you're not a Paypal fan, you can just pay directly through the checkout system via Credit card, Etsy gift certificates and more (available payment methods depend on your geographic location). Of course, Paypal is still available as an option .

Wednesday, February 5

Art Journal: Happiness is a Cat at Home


I've been pretty good about working in my Art Journal - of course, we've been snowed in all those days. And more is on the way, fingers crossed I'm not surrounded by closed roads for days again... I videotaped this particular art journal creation. It's not an instructional one - it just fast-forwards through everything with some cute music. I was just creating with headphones on, not so much in the talking mood that day heheh.  I've listed the supplies below the video, and if you have any questions about the process, please just ask below in the comments, and I'll answer them the best that I can :)


Supplies:

  • Decorative paper
  • Mod Podge
  • Faber-Castell artist PITT big brush pens
  • Unity Stamp Co. Stamps 
  • Black Ink
  • Neon acrylic craft paint paint: pink
  • Craft Paint: white and teal
  • Princeton Catalyst wedges #1
  • Washi tapes
  • Date stamp

The process was a pretty simple one: collaged background, add more layers (markers, stamps, washi tape and acrylic paint to bring it together). I then outlined the cat, and painted white all around. I dabbed with towels, and scrapped with the wedge to be sure some of the texture and colour of the background peaked through. The wedge allowed the white paint to catch on the edges to really emphasize texture. The I added a few words (I wrote them out on pencil first), and it was done!


Oreo seems to like it :)

Tuesday, February 4

Heart Strings Watercolour Painting

"Heart Strings" - Watercolour painting
I've begun to starting painting Valentine's themed watercolours. This is a "holiday" that I really love. I know that it's often regarded as a 'Hallmark' holiday - a scheme to make people buy lots of stuff. But, if you don't fall into the trap of consumerism; it can be a really cute holiday to celebrate everyone you love and spend special, quality time with them. We often just make a really nice dinner together, and then have a quiet evening with some wine. Being shift workers, it's so nice to spend time with each other.


Anyways, back to the painting :) "Heart Strings" was inspired by the Mixed Media Valentine Garland video tutorial that I shared with you all. The idea of the little birds decorating the trees with them was an adorable thought that I wanted to paint out. The whimsical branches of the tree help to bring out that magical "Disney-movie" feel to it: think Cinderella's super cute little birds twittering and flying around gracing all the trees with little hearts

The original painting is still available in my online shop. If you miss out, I do have a few more Valentine's paintings to share :)

Saturday, February 1

Don't Blink





Just having some fun with my camera during the last "thaw" a couple weeks ago.... catching raindrops on my camera.