Friday, January 29, 2016

Mixed Media Art Prompts

I saw a great Idea the other day, maybe on Pinterest, I can't remember, but thought I would try it.

It's a Mixed Media Idea Prompt set of cards. 

I started by going through the trash.  Yes I did. 

We had been clothing shopping and I had cut off and tossed all the tags.  They are all different shapes and usually really stiff paper.  When I ran out of tags I cut up a cereal box.

I laid the cardboard all out and coated them with gesso. 

Black gesso in this case, only because it was sitting on my table and I seem to have a couple bottles of the stuff and hardly ever use it. 
I brushed a coat on one side, let it dry and then the other side got painted as well.

Magazine pictures, washi tape, random little bits and pieces of  this and that.   

I found all kinds of left overs so they got glued down on the cards.  It was a great way to use up a few things.

I brushed some white paint on a few cards.

I used stamps and stickers, brads, beads and ribbons.

I tore paper, cut out faces, stamped words and smeared on some more paint.

I added some doodles with paint pens and honestly just had a grand ole time mucking about on the cards.

Anything goes!

 Next I made a list of all the ways I could add a little something to a mixed media piece including some that I had just done.

  The idea of this was to break out of the same old rut.   

I typed the list out and cut the prompts into strips. 

 I used gel medium to adhere them to the decorated cards. 

Finally a hole punch in the top and I put them all on a book ring. 

Now if I get stuck and can't decide what to do next I will pick a card or two at random and let them lead me to my next step.

Here is a list of my Mixed Media Prompts.

make a spiral and fill it with words
sew on a button or two
fill a space with a message
draw a poppy and paint it red
stamp with bubble wrap
add a map
make a new foam stamp and use it
add a dragonfly
add music notes
use a red paint pen
draw hearts with wings
use a black sharpie
draw a bird on a branch
add a music sheet
stamp on a butterfly
draw a mushroom
paint out the negative space
stitch on the page
add a flower
make a new hot glue stencil and use it
layer on a tea bag
add some metallic
draw a dandelion in seed
layer on simple flowers drawn on vintage paper
use a white paint pen
draw a zentangle pattern
stamp over a stencil
add a tag with a brad
write on tissue paper and glue it upside down
stamp wings
sew on some beads
blow ink around with a straw
stencil on some alphabets

Have you got any more to add?  Tell me and maybe I will make some more cards!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

week 3 Firecracker bush

One of the first things I notice when I get to my Texas home is my firecracker bush.

Clusters of scarlet tubular flowers resemble small firecrackers and it blooms all fall and winter for me. The leaves are slender and rush-like with long, showy cascades.

A favorite of hummingbirds; this perennial is a must-have for tropical butterfly gardens.

Most firecrackers will grow to a height of approximately 4 or 5-feet but mine is well over 7 feet tall. 

Another reason I enjoy my firecracker is that this flowering bush attracts butterflies, bees and many types of  hummingbirds.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

week 2 Aloe Vera

This week's flower is my Aloe Vera.  It has a really lovely flower held high above the plant on a long tough stock.  

 When I arrived here in November I noticed the buds starting.  The flowers are just now starting to fall from the stock and it's late January.
Most people know the healing benefits of the leaf of Aloe Vera.  Break open the leaf and rub the thick, slimy juice on a wound, sun burn or bug bite for some relief.

When I moved to this house I found a pot under the down spout of the eave trough  (gutter for my American readers).  There was no dirt in the pot just two wrinkled and sad looking Aloe Vera plants with a half inch of slimy, dirty water in the bottom of the pot.  My neighbor told me that they must been there for five years as no one had done any gardening in that yard for at least that long.  Poor things.  I promptly planted those two sad plants in my garden and today, three years later I have a very healthy and prolific patch of Aloe Vera that has thanked me by producing many new plants and four lovely tall and beautiful flower spikes. 

Monday, January 11, 2016

week one Hibiscus

Besides my regular painting, Im going to attempt one painting a week or 52 paintings of a specific theme in 2016 and have picked my garden flowers as my topic.  Since I move from Saskatchewan to Texas during the year my garden flowers are pretty varied.

Week One:   Hibiscus

There are several hundred species of Hibiscus.  They are  native to warm temperature and tropical regions throughout the world.  The tea can be made of hibiscus flowers and is served both hot and cold.  The beverage is well known for its color, tanginess and flavor.  Hibiscus tea is popular as a natural diuretic.  It contains vitamin C and minerals, and is used traditionally as a mild medicine that may even lower cholesterol.   Tuck a flower behind your right ear if you are single or openly available for a relationship.

Saturday, January 9, 2016

colouring books... yes or no?

Have you got caught up in the colouring book craze?

Last winter I found Joanne Basford's colouring book Enchanted Garden.   
I originally bought it to attempt to learn her drawing style. 

I love drawing leaves and trees, flowers and mushrooms, so I happily spent hours attempting her designs in my sketch book.  I never put a crayon or marker in that book. 
For me, it was a reference book .

my attempt at drawing from the Secret Garden colouring book

my drawings in Joanna Basford's style

Then along came her book, Enchanted Forest and I ordered it from Amazon but before it arrived I was gifted a copy.    So now I had 2 copies and I gave myself permission to colour in one of them.  I had a much neglected set of Prismacolor colour pencils so I dug them out and sharpened them up.

The whole colouring book craze seemed to explode. 
Soon my Pinterest  started featuring tutorials on how to colour,
how to blend, what pens to use and Facebook groups devoted
to colouring started up.

I bought more colouring books, bought some fine line markers that wouldn't bleed through the pages and my Prismacolor pencils got shorter and shorter. 

I could color in front of the TV and soon had my self a little colouring book nest around my chair. 

Colouring book page

I enjoyed all that colouring but I noticed that I stopped drawing,
stopped painting and stopped journaling. 
For me, colouring is easy but drawing isn't. 

Colouring book page

I  need to work at drawing and painting everyday or I forget how. 

So now put my coloured pencils and markers away and packed up my colouring books.
I'm worried that I will never paint again if I continue to colour in my colouring books. 

colouring book page

What do you think? 
Have you jumped on the colouring book band wagon and
if you are a painter or drawer have you found that it sapped your creative energy? 

Or should I not worry about that and just enjoy the fact that I was doing something that I enjoyed.

Leave me a comment about your colouring experience.

Artfully Yours,


Saturday, January 2, 2016

Review of 2015 - ArtSpa

2015 was a busy and wonderful year with lots of things accomplished.

What I didn't get do was post many blogs.  You see, we don't have a very good internet connection at our home in the forest.  I write blogs but often can't post them. 

What I think I will do this winter is go through my drafts of blogs and post them now.

September of 2015, my first ArtSpa weekend.

(I plan on at least 2 ArtSpas in 2016, one in June and one in September.)

Here is a little story of my first ArtSpa.

Now that my Studio is set up I am ready to start sharing my beautiful space and that means Art retreats, classes, art shows and workshops. 

I invited some girl friends to join me for a weekend and we had my very first Artfulness retreat. 

I planned projects, set up bedrooms, cooked and prepped for the weekend and then on Friday afternoon everyone started to arrive. 

We jumped right in and got our creative juices flowing with some stamping, water colour painting, stenciling and I introduced the ladies to my Gelli print pad. 

Saturday after a breakfast of fresh muffins, bagels, coffee, fruit and juice we went for a short easy hike. We took our time and really looked. 

We found lots of berries, flowers and hundreds of mushrooms.  The sun was shining, chickadees were singing and the temperature was perfect.

We took lots of pictures,
picked a few flowers and
then took them and
our sketch books
to the outside table
to practice drawing.

              Nothing fancy, just got the basic shapes down and
recorded a little about what we saw and where we were. 

This is a great way to start any creative session. 

It was a beautiful morning and I had a little trouble getting the ladies to move back inside to the studio.

 We spent the rest of the day painting, stamping, stenciling and laughing.  The ladies had a great time and were pretty pleased with what they accomplished in such a short time.

Supper and visiting in the evening, then off to bed so we could get back to being creative in the morning.  It was a little cooler outside the next day so we went right to the studio and started working on our second canvas. 

We did intuitive painting and then painted the negative space to find the subject inside.  Breaking out of your rut and trying something new stretches your creativeness.

It was hard to stop on Sunday and I don't think anyone really wanted to go home.  So we relaxed on the deck and enjoyed each others company for a little while longer. 

Great times!