Thursday, July 28, 2011


Water media. I have the hardest time using water media in my art journal and I just don't know why. I paint with watercolors all the time but not often in my art journal. In Christy Tomlinson's "She Had 3 Hearts" workshop, she demos lots of water media, so I decided to make myself use them in my journal. This page was done with watercolor crayons and Gelatos and it was a struggle! It is just a different mindset for me. In the end, I did enjoy myself and the experiment, but I will definitely have to work with these things more. While I'm not crazy about the page, I had a learning experience and isn't that what it's all about? At least that's what I keep reminding myself.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

3 Hearts

Monday I started Christy Tomlinson's "She Had 3 Hearts" art journaling workshop HERE. This is the very first art journaling class I have taken and even though I have been around awhile (when it comes to art journaling), it has been nice to learn a few new things and be reminded of some things that I already knew but forgot about. It's easy to get into a rut in art journaling sometimes and just reach for the paints and supplies that you "know". Know how they will behave, know how they will turn out, etc., which is nice but art journaling is about the experiments too. I always have to remind myself while working in an art journal of my "art journal motto", which is "you win some, you lose some". Sometimes you end up with something you really love and sometimes you end up with a complete disaster but it's all about the process. At least that's what I have to tell myself. I once saw a blog by someone (I wish I could remember who) that she called "mostly nothing, but sometimes something". I loved that and it is exactly how my art journal could be described.
I wouldn't call this first page an absolute disaster but I also can't call it a stunning success. But the process was fun, which is all that matters. It is almost entirely done in acrylics (fluid and heavy body) with some Pitt pens, gel pen, charcoal, stamps, and a teeny bit of collage thrown in.
Christy's class is based on an old Chinese Proverb that says: "a woman has three hearts, one she shares with the world, one she shares with her family, and one she shares only with herself." Isn't that a great thought?
Well, since I was starting a new class, I decided that I needed to start a journal just for this class (because the 6 others I already have going is just not enough). I bought a book at my local thrift store to alter. I chose one with good paper and a good spine and, since Christy told me to, I gessoed my pages which has helped with the stability of the paper, which I already knew (Isn't that was gesso is for anyway?) but being impatient, I usually skip. So that's been my biggest reminder...DON'T SKIP THE GESSO, especially when working with book paper.
And so I'm off to work on my "3 Hearts" journal some more. There is an enormous amount of videos to watch in week one (like 28). If you, too, would like to join the "3 Hearts" workshop, it is still open to sign ups. I'd love to see you there!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Where Have I Been?

As I mentioned before I left for my big adventure, I finished a new Remains of the Day journal just in time to go. I LOVE (I know I use the word "love" a lot, but I really do mean it!) to use vintage bits and pieces in my journals but I have a hard time running across them and when I do, they are usually more money than I want to spend. I mean, after all, I am just going to cut them up, tear them, paint over them, etc. I don't want to spend a wad of cash. Plus, my kids usually don't appreciate "the hunt" as much as I do. SO here's my major discovery: Just Something I Made HERE by Cathe Holden and Graphics Fairy HERE by Karen (I'm sure she has a last name, but I don't know it). Oh my goodness, these two blogs are FREE VINTAGE HEAVEN!!! Did you catch that? FREE!!! Both these blogs have like a bazillion followers and so, as usual, I am one of the last to know, but I love them so much! It's like I've been living under a rock and someone just turned it over. I really don't know where I have been but I'm happy to be educated in Just Something I Made and Graphics Fairy. My printer has been working nonstop since I discovered them. Awesome. I'm so grateful they both share their treasures. So grateful.
Here's a few pages from my journal. The blue "Seal of Approval" is from Just Something I Made. So is the vintage tag. The eyes are from an old journal page.
And so are both of these tags. There are so many little bits that I printed for this journal and they make me so happy! You can see more pages with my little vintage treasures HERE.
And speaking of happy, I know that I have been going on and on about watching my brother's solo but I just have to post ONE MORE picture (well, maybe one more). It might be the best picture of the entire trip and it doesn't even have a plane in it...
...Isn't that the best. Makes me start to tear up.
How's that for the cutest thing?

Friday, July 22, 2011

A Most Amazing Experience

Watching my brother's solo U-2 flight this week was such an amazing experience. Our family had the opportunity to ride in the chase car that helps the pilots land the U-2. This video shows what it looked like from a chase car. The video was filmed at the same AFB with the same make, model, color, and heck, might even be the same car that we rode in while following my brother. There were 8 of us so we split up and each rode along for 5 of my brother's 10 "touch and go" landings. We hit at least 100 mph every ride and my dad saw the speedometer hit 130 mph. Although we didn't really watch the speedometer because we were so focused on the plane right above us. It looked close enough to touch. The kids were obviously impressed. Oh, who am I kidding, I was equally as excited as my 4 year old. Maybe more (since I'm being honest here).

It was a once in a lifetime experience for me and I am so grateful that I was able to go. Being able to solo in a U-2 is a pretty remarkable accomplishment. They give you a number when you complete your solo and my brother's number is 898. That means that he is the 898th person to solo a U-2 since the plane was put into service in 1955. I kept telling my kids what an amazing experience they just had and I hope that when they grow up, they will realize that they were able to do something that most people just don't get the opportunity to do, but most of all, I hope they learn, from my brother's example, that you can accomplish anything, even the "impossible", if you are willing to do the work. Congratulations Brent!

Monday, July 18, 2011

So Excited!

I'm so excited to be going here:

To watch him:

Fly this:

I have never seen my brother fly in real life and this flight will be his U-2 solo. It's a BIG deal! I can't wait to spend all night driving with my parents, kids, and nephews (we rented a Suburban) to get there. 3 adults and 5 kids, 13 hours one way...what could possibly go wrong? Wait don't tell me. I want to be an optimist! But really I don't care how I get there, I just can't wait to see my brother. He is awesome. No matter what, it will all be worth it. I even made another Remains of the Day journal to take with me. I ran out of time posting pictures of it, but I will when I get back home. I kinda LOVE it.

I'm so glad my husband supports me in all my craziness. He really helps me try to accomplish all the "brilliant" ideas that pop into my head. Maybe he just likes all the quiet when I am off on another adventure with the kids but I so appreciate him. I am blessed.

And we are off! This is truly going to be our California Adventure!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sketching, Journaling and Catching Up

I know that you all probably think that I have been in some sort of artistic rut or something, based on the number of posts here lately, but no. I am alive and well. I have just been too "busy" (read "lazy") to take some pictures and get them posted. So here's what I have been up to the last little while. 1. I have been journaling. I have been working in my 9x12 Canson Mixed Media journal lately. Love the paper in that thing! As much as I enjoy altering old books for my journals, it's almost like heaven when you work with decent paper.2. I have been sketching in "Molly" the Moleskine. I love the feeling of a Moleskine sketchbook in your hands but I am not crazy about the paper for watercolors. I think I am turning into a paper snob. Wish I was able to bind a book as well as the people at Moleskine. Then I could have the best of both worlds.
3. I've been working on finishing up my travel journal from our vacation.
Look how fat and juicy it is getting, and we were only gone a week! I saved a colossal amount of stuff along our journey and I LOVE this thing. I made one for my daughter and one entirely full of pockets for my son too. We had a great time relaxing at night and working in our journals while we were gone but I still have a bit more to work on before I can say that it's finished.
Well, that's it! That's what I've been doing, well, besides weddings, laundry, barbecues, parades, sparklers, vacuuming, and attending my 20th class reunion. That's right 20th! I guess I no longer qualify as a spring chicken but I did have a great time. Our class really is an amazing group of the best people on the planet. Just GOOD people. I really do love them. Probably couldn't have said that WHILE I was in high school but now that I am older and wiser, I can say that for sure! I guess it's good that I am no longer a spring chicken...well, at least in that regard. I'm just hoping that my mid-life crisis involves a black Dodge Charger with a Panther Pink stripe. If I have to get old, that's the way I want to get there!