Wednesday, 28 June 2017

WOYWW #421: Erosion Bundle Results (yay!)

I seem to be out of sync with the WOYWW sequence, but I'll follow Julia's lead and call this week #422. (Nope, it is #421, after all!) Which is the number of weeks this marathon blog hop has been going on and even continues while Julia is Stateside doing all sorts of fun things.

What a difference a week makes, hey? Unbearably hot and stifling last week, cool and refreshing this week - I know which one I prefer! And I don't even mind the rain! Over the weekend, I decided to open my erosion bundles that I'd put out in the garden back in February, inspired by Evelyn Flint. I blogged about them here and here. My bundles looked like this before I opened them:

Having learned my lesson from the sneak peek, I opened them outside expecting all sorts of residents to emerge. Sure enough, there were some spiders, earwigs and other tenants that I couldn't even identify crawling around. They have all been evacuated unharmed and are now happily living somewhere else in the garden. There was a lot of ooohing and aaahing on my part when I opened the packets, though neither my son nor my husband seemed to understand my fascination with the weathered textures and colours. My son thought they were "skanky" - I think, they're delectable! Each to their own - see, what you think!  

I'm totally in love with this process and will try it again soon. I can use these elements in collages and on journal pages or just admire them as they are. 

Thanks for visiting today. I lost my internet connection last week, just as I was doing my rounds, so it took me a few days to get back to everyone. If I accidentally missed you, please give me a shout! 

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

WOYWW #420: Heatwave!!!

I'm taking part in WOYWW three times in a row this month! And let me tell you, it is HOT in the UK right now - well, by British standards, anyway. I took this photo of my temporary desk in the garden on Monday working on a LifeBook lesson, but after that I had to move indoors as it was unbearably hot out there, even in the shade. If you want to see the finished project, you can find it here.

Other than that, I have a couple of pages in my new organizer to show you. They look very similar as I used the same paints and imagery, but they are supposed to be separate pages. The left hand side is the inside cover of my organizer. 

I took this photo while we were on a family outing in Evesham, Worcestershire. There's a possibility we might move there, so we looked around the town. This is the local museum and dates back to the 14th century!  

Could anyone identify this feather for me? I found it on my walk around the countryside. I'm hoping it's an owl feather, or something equally cool, like a hawk or a falcon. It would be good to know! It has the patterns of a tawny owl feather, but it's more pointed than the ones I saw online. 

Here's Oreo keeping cool on the roof over the garage last night. Now that we have to keep all windows open, he can get out there. He likes to observe the other cats from a safe vantage point. 

Happy Summer Solstice - enjoy the longest day of the year! 

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

LifeBook Week24: Self-respect

I hate to admit it, but my last LifeBook post was nine weeks ago! This was last week's lesson, by Julie Fei-Fan Balzer, titled Fertilizer for your Creativity. I'm somewhat familiar with Julie's work as she was one of the first artists that I came across on my mixed-media journey, so I was happy to see her name pop up on the teacher list this year.

Julie's lesson included an exercise to transform negative words into something beautiful, so we started out with some nasty messages from our inner critic - and let me tell you - I didn't hold back! These words were written in large block letters all over the page, which were then transformed into abstract shapes and flowers. Mine are probably more abstract than necessary - it looks more like a flow-chart LOL!

I used my Inktense blocks to colour them. Julie used gouache paints, which I haven't got. I've ordered a cheap set to try them but it hasn't arrived yet. I think I managed to achieve similar results with the Inktense. Some outlining and doodling completed the process and voila, my negative opinion about myself were transformed into some funky, VERY abstract flowers. Here are three stages of the process: (I'm deliberately not showing the original words - too embarrassing!)

I added the word 'self-respect' as an afterthought as it seemed like a fitting title for my page. If you have self-respect, you don't continually slag yourself off, like I do sometimes.

I really enjoyed this lesson - it brought me back to my doodling roots. I'm easing myself back into a more regular blogging routine and hopefully I will be able to catch up with some of the other lessons that I missed. However, I do not intend to do all of them this year. At least I'll have something to work on next year without having to spend more money on courses. I think I have enough unfinished classes to last me a couple of years! 

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

WOYWW #419: A cheap organizer

Hello peeps! I'm here again for another round of WOYWW - the second week in a row, which is an achievement in itself. I managed to do some arting yesterday - here's the obligatory desk shot:

I was working (playing!) in a cheap organizer I'd picked up from The Works at the weekend for just £2! It's got lots of pockets, which is what attracted me to it in the first place. I'm not an organizer sort of person, so I'll just use it as an art journal and fill the pockets with tags and cards and such. I've already done a couple of pages, just randomly playing with paint. Not all pages need to have a "story" - sometimes it's just about the play. I'll have fun altering the cover later. It's nice and sturdy, so I'm thinking of a Finnabair-type collage for the cover. 

The £2 organizer!

First two pages

Detail shot
Detail shot
I've also found a great way to display my printed feathers from last week. Remember those mini buckets I altered a while ago? They're perfect for holding my feathers! I just stuck a bit of aluminium foil in them to hold the feathers in place - almost like a bunch of flowers. I need to paint some more feathers so I can fill all three of my buckets.

We've had some lovely sunny weather over the last few days. I just hope it won't get too hot. Any hotter and I start suffering. Here's Oreo enjoying a bit of sunbathing, making sure the rays reach all parts of his tummy, not worrying about his modesty. How does he not get overheated with all that fur?

Thanks for popping in!
Hope your day is filled with sunshine too! 

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

WOYWW #418: Gelli printed feathers

Has it really been 4 weeks since my last post? I'm checking in with a quick project and update for WOYWW.  We have finally sold our house, just before pulling it off the market. The problem is that we still haven't found anywhere to buy, so it might all fall apart, but we'll keep looking. The good news is, that I can bring my stuff out now and start creating again - as I don't need to keep the house pristine clean and tidy, ready for viewings. So I wasted no time to get messy and got my gelli plate out yesterday to print on some feathers. I was inspired by this video on YT. This is what my desk looked like during the proceedings:

You can spot a stack of white feathers that I got on eBay. They came from China and were very cheap. I used my 8X8 inch gelli plate with a variety of acrylic paints to colour the feathers and then I stamped and stencilled on top of them with white paint. This is what I ended up with:

I've also got some nice prints from the gelli plate:

The feathers are very pretty to look at. I might used them in projects, or just put them in a jar for decoration. This was just a quick project to jumpstart my creativity. It's hard to get back on the bandwagon once you've fallen off, but I intend to return at full steam- sometime soon!

We went on a short mini-holiday last week during the half term break. I'll post some photos - see if you can tell where we were. Hint: I expect Angela (@Felix the Crafty Cat) will recognize this place immediately. 

We were away only for one night and decided to leave Oreo in the house instead of putting him in a cattery. I'm sure he preferred it this way too. We left him with plenty of food/water and he had the view of the garden, all his toys and several places to sleep to while away the hours. He was fine when we returned and he didn't seem to have missed us at all.  

I've missed this years ATC swap, but I'm looking forward to seeing 
all your wonderful creations as I do my rounds. 
Happy W8YWW!