Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Lucky Girl!

Here's a little fact that is just unbelievable to me:  When Art Journaling magazine publishes an article, they PAY the artist!  PAY, like with money!  Don't tell the good folks at Stampington, but I totally would have put my journal in their magazine FOR FREE, so this idea of being paid had me more than just a little giddy!  They give you the option of having them cut you a check OR giving you a credit at The Shoppe at Somerset for supplies.  If you choose the later, you get paid a little extra and since I fully intended to spend every dime on art supplies anyway, that was my choice.  In my mind, that's a WIN-WIN!! 
So I turned on the Pitch Perfect station on Pandora, clicked that mouse, and went shopping!
I chose things that I either cannot find in Idaho or that I would have NEVER have kicked down the money for, had I not had a credit, because in my mind, not using "real" money makes it easier to shell out exorbitant amounts for a supply that I have always wanted.  I know, it's a bit delusional, but when it comes to buying art supplies, sometimes it's just best not to think about the net worth of your art supply arsenal.  Plus, you forget all about that kind of thing when the UPS man shows up at your door with a box full of awesome!
That's right!  I bought myself not one, but TWO sets of Copic sketch markers and a set of Copic inking pens.
Here's my test run in my Dylusions Journal (which I pretty much LOVE, by the way.  More about that another day).  By the end of this little experiment, I felt that maybe, just maybe, I could fall in love with Copics.  Then the very next morning, when I went to church, I ran into a friend of mine who is a very talented artist and she opened up her church bag and there, next to her hymn book was a bag of these...
Spectrum Noir markers.  They, like Copics, are alcohol markers with dual tips.  My friend had decided that alcohol markers were not for her and GAVE me all of them.  How cool is that?!!  I used both the Copic and Spectrum Noir markers to make this little doodle.
 I've been really missing the ocean lately.  I'm not sure exactly how or why a ocean loving/needing girl ended up landlocked, but one day, maybe, I'll live near the sea....ahhhh....sorry, sidetracked.  Anyway, as I was saying I used both brands of markers together on this doodle and I learned a couple of things.  1. Spectrum Noir markers are bleeders.  I'm not talking about bleeding through the paper to the other side (all alcohol markers do that).  These bleed out from the point of the pen.  They spread quickly and you have to be VERY careful in detail areas.  2.  Spectrum Noir markers do not play well with others.  When they came into contact with the areas colored with the Copic pens, they caused the normally clean Copics to bleed into them.  The Copics, however, did not do that.  It could have the potential to be a fun effect to work with but it is NOT fun when your crisp black doodle starts running into the other colors.  Not fun at all.
After all my experimenting, I came to the conclusion that I like the Copic markers a little better.  That's not to say that the Spectrum Noir pens will sit idly on my desk, I think that with a bit more experimenting, I can avoid some of their obstacles and I'm ALWAYS happy to have a reason to play with new art supplies.  I am a LUCKY girl!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Treasure Found

I am a HUGE fan of Sharpie water based paint pens.  I love those things.  I love their ability to write over almost anything, their opacity (how's that for a word?), their ability to just keep on working, and that they are so accessible.  They're in every store.  In fact, the ONLY two complaints that I had about them was that I couldn't get a smaller tip than "fine" in my neck of the woods, nor were there many color choices.
And then I walked into Michaels....
It was as if a beam of light came down from Heaven and fell upon them...
Choirs singing...
That's right!  Water based Sharpie paint pens in EXTRA FINE and pastel colors.  Peach, blue, aqua, lavender, and PINK!  Not neon pink!  Just plain, old, regular pink!  I slapped down my Michaels coupon without hesitation!
Oh, how they make me happy!  I had to take them home and test them out immediately.

I love this quote by Twyla Tharp and if ever there was a week I wanted to run away from home it was last week.  The house made from the tag that the mechanic put on my keys as I left my car with him is just one of the many souvenirs left over from a tough week.
I have some amazing 140 lb. Fabriano hot press watercolor paper in this journal and it was calling for me to just play with watercolors, pens, and my "fancy" crayons (Caran D'Ache Neocolor II's)...oh, and my spiffy new Sharpies!  I LOVE them.  I thought that I couldn't love a pen more than these and then, as I was finishing up this page, the UPS man arrived....and THAT is a story for another day!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

All War Belongs On Paper

So, during my long blogging absence, I have been dealing with some tough things.  Most of them are still fresh and precious and I'm not really ready to share too many details, but I will say that I am learning to allow myself to be a little more vulnerable (slowly) and trusting.  Vulnerable and trusting is NOT my talent.  I am (and I'm sure that I'm not alone in this) my own worst enemy.  Between learning to manage my fibro and breaking down my very well built walls, I end up feeling a little banged up sometimes.  It is during those times that a bit of divine intervention shows up and the basis for this page is no different.  This quote and the words of Byron "Katie" Reid came into my life at exactly the time that I needed it.
How GREAT is that quote?!!!  This quote sums up in five words why I journal.  Sometimes it is happy and bright.  Sometimes it is just, well, NOT.  Either way, it is part of me and my expression of whatever battle I am in at the time and it's ALL okay.  In fact, this page is from a journal that I lovingly call my "Welcome To Bolivia" journal and there is a good possibility that I will have to BURN it at some point.  There are things in there that I'm not sure I will ever be comfortable with them seeing the light of day!  Only time will tell.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Love and Fear

What's this?  Two posts in two days?!!  Shocking!
I thought it might be nice to share a little bit of journal art that I have been experimenting with.  I was looking to try something new to me when I saw THIS tutorial on Pinterest by Nine Scrap.  Her awesome blog is in French, which I don't speak, but her work is GORGEOUS.  Fortunately for me, her photography broke through the language barrier and I was able to follow along.  Here's what I came up with.
I don't own spray ink (yes, dear husband, there are art supplies that I DON'T own), so I just watered down some Golden liquid acrylics as a substitute.  I actually love using liquid acrylics in place of inks because they are permanent and won't move around when I add subsequent layers.  Layers moving around when I don't want them to is a bit of a pet peeve of mine, you know.
After following along for the first few layers, I sort of started down my own path and used gel medium to attach a heart torn from a Japanese book.  I added color to the heart with Gelatos and then blended it all together with gesso and my finger.  When the heart was totally dry, I sanded it a bit to reveal the layers.  After the whole thing was dry, I used an Inktense pencil and a waterbrush, to shade the heart and the letters, because, apparently, I just can't help myself. 
While I was finishing up the page, the neighbor girl was looking over my shoulder. She said that it was "so cool".  I thought so too.  So thank you Nine Scrap for the inspiration.  Both myself and the neighbor girl are impressed with your skills!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Still Around

Wow!  This is one neglected little blog! 
Well, I'm still here and I'm still throwing paint around every now and then.  I'm just not awesome at keeping my blog updated, but I did want to stop in and share a bit of AWESOME news to anyone who may still check in on this blog.  If you remember, back in December, I sent in my little art journal to Art Journaling magazine and I am happy, honored, excited to announce that it can be found in the current issue.

See??!!!  That's MY name right there!  It's just so exciting for me.  I love Art Journaling.  It's one of the tools that helped me the most on my art journaling path.  I studied each issue to glean every technique, style, and supply I could learn.  It's so amazing to think that now, maybe, someone else is out there learning from my journal.  It's a "full circle moment" for me and I'm SO GRATEFUL for the opportunity!