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October 13th, 2015

art journal page showing painting of the goddess MinerveThis art journal page was actually a warmup exercise done for Lifebook 2015, week 34.  The art journal page was inspired by a lesson taught by Alena Hennessy, called Painting the Muse. I chose Minerva for my muse-goddess. I think she is a Roman goddess.

I used tones of green, white and black. The back relies heavily on black and green Dylusions sprays. The goddess is hand drawn and painted over top of the sprayed background.

The hand-printed text reads, “try to imagine what you desire”. I thought Minerva’s closed eyes looked as if she were meditating or visualizing her goals.

I gave Minerva a fancy headdress and used a little red for visual impact.

This was a warmup exericse. I did a larger, more elaborate goddess for my bigger painting. I will post that tomorrow.

If anyone is interested in Lifebook, owner Tam LaPorte is now accepting registrations for Lifebook 2016. You can learn about it here: Click here to view more details about Lifebook 2016

July 30th, 2015

art journal page with painting of orca whale This art journal page has a painting of an orca whale. The theme was DREAM. I made this for a swap at Art for the Creative Mind, a Yahoo mixed media art group.

I started by doing some paper collaging, then painted over the collage with acrylic paints.

I drew and painted the whale free hand, then did some stenciling with stencil paste. I used a rubber stamp to apply some shapes that resemble seaweed, at least in my opinion.

I drew on some bubbles, and used a stamp to apply the word DREAM.

I printed the word BIG with a Sharpie.

I live in Vancouver, and we often see orcas in our coastal waters. They are always a thrill to witness, and this one was fun to paint.

June 11th, 2015

art journal page showing painting of Johnny Cash This Art Journal page represents the spirit of Johnny Cash. I am not a fan of country or CW music — unless its Johnny Cash. Then I’m all for it.

I made this for a swap at Art for the Creative Mind, an online art group that I have participated in for a few years now.  The theme for this month is “SOUND”.

I thought about SOUND for quite a while, and of course, I considered all the obvious images  that come to mind — musical notations, people speaking, ocean waves crashing, trains approaching, birds singing, etc.  None of those images resonated with me.

Then for some reason, the words to Sunday Morning Coming Down started playing in my head.

“For there’s nothing short of dying
That’s half as as lonesome as the sound
Of the sleeping city sidewalk
And Sunday morning coming down.”

I’m learning to do male portraits. I’m not yet very good at it, but unless I try, I will never get better. So this cowboy is not really supposed to look like John Cash — but he is supposed to represent his essence and his particular sound.

I drew the picture with graphite pencil and colored it with acrylic paints and watercolor crayons. The background is collaged. It has papers, paint, stamping and stenciling.

The words to the song are computer generated and distressed with light brown artist chalk.

June 11th, 2015

art journal portrait of a male high school graduate This art journal page is my attempt at painting a portrait of a male high school graduate.  I didn’t get the face quite right. They say practice makes perfect. I am working on portraits these days, trying to get the faces, heads and shoulders to resemble actual people, usually from photographs.

Here, I like the mortarboard, the body and the clothing. The face, not so much. I haven’t done very many male portraits. In fact, this may be the first attempt ever.

This particular art journal page was done for a swap at an online art group called Art for the Creative Mind. The theme for this month was “feel”.

I stamped the letters to spell Feel the Pride, and arranged them along the front of the gown.

I drew the picture with graphite pencils and used acrylic paints for the coloring.





April 8th, 2015

art journal page with cartoon cat and mouseThis Art Journal page is entitled TRUST. I made it for a monthly swap at Art for the Creative Mind.

The theme for the year is Nature. The sub-theme for this month is trust.

I made a collage type background with tissue paper and paint. I drew the cartoon cat and mouse by hand.  I view animals as being part of nature, and the cat and mouse seemed to reflect trust issues.

The text, printed out from the computer and colored with artist chalk, reads, “Do you trust me,”I asked. “Gosh, no,” you replied. “Me neither,” I admitted.

I added a little stenciling using molding post and I drew hearts on a string to dangle from the text.

March 23rd, 2015

art journal page with girl listening to nature and holding her finger to her mouth to say shhhThis Art Journal page is for a swap at Art for the Creative Mind.

The year-long theme for this swap is Nature, and each month has an additional theme. For this month, the additional theme is Listen.

The first layer of the collage consists of scraps of various papers glued on to the watercolour paper. I used a gel medium for the adhesive.

I drew the girl by hand, and painted her, plus the background, using acrylic paint. I stamped the butterflies on with black Stazon Ink and a rubber stamp.

The hand written text reads, “Be still and listen to the sounds of nature’s music all around”.

It did not turn out as well as I hoped, but that is the nature of art. Some projects are more pleasing to us than others.



February 8th, 2015

art journal page female figure sitting under a tree This is an Art Journal page made for a swap at Art for the Creative mind. The latter is a Yahoo group for mixed media artists.

We are making an art journal page every month to swap. The theme for the entire year is Nature, and the specific theme for January was Solace.

I wanted to make a silouette-like shape for a female figure sitting under a tree. I saw a summer scene, the type of scene you see when you are facing a backlit scene on your camera.

I used acrylic paint and some watercolor crayons for the background. The female shape is drawn with a graphic pen.

The text, written with a black Sharpie, reads, “There is Great Solace in Nature.”



December 13th, 2014

art journal page with image of wonky house Be is Ever So Humble There is NO Place Like Home.  Or so says part of the message on this art journal page.

The theme was Wonky Houses, as as is often the case, it was made for my swap group, Art for the Creative Mind.

The background is mixed media paper over which I have sprayed some various inks, forming blobs and smears and streaks at random.

I made the wonky house from scraps of scrapbook paper, and outlined it with a brown marking pen.

To add a bit of texture, the steps are made from folded papers, glued in place.

I made the tree from more scrapbook paper, and attached a cut out, hand made flower on top of it.

Using a marking pencil, I drew some branches extending from the tree and made a few birds flying above the house.

Some small yellow circles cut from scrapbook paper formed a border of flowers along the steps, with stems drawn with brown marking pencil.

And that is my humble little wonky house.


December 13th, 2014

art journal page with textured heart and cartoon drawing of shopping woman A textured heart is the focal point on this art journal page.  I made it for a swap at Art for the Creative Mind again. We were to create a heart with texture, and the theme was My Great Big Generous Heart.

For the background, I used some mixed media paper on which I had sprayed blobs of inks.  I painted over this with white paint and various other colors.

To make the heart, I used a lot of gesso and stencils, then colored over it with inks and sprays.

When that was dry, I rubbed it with Inka Gold.

Now about the cartoon shopper. Many years ago, I was recovering from an illness and I amused myself by drawing and coloring cartoon forms.  The shopper was one of those drawings.

I felt inspired to put the shopper over the textured heart, attaching it messily with gold colored staples.

Seeing as it is Christmas season, I think I equated the shopper with giving Christmas gifts.

Around the edges, I wrote with red marking pencil: “Is it really better to give than to receive, or do we receive by giving?”

I drew doodled circle shapes around the edge of the paper with orangy-yellow marking pencil.





September 2nd, 2014

art journal page with texture I made this Art Journal page for a swap at Art for the Creative Mind.

The theme was simply, “texture.” We were expected to create texture using any method we wanted.

I began by smearing gesso over watercolour paper and then raking through it with a fine comb. This created the second layer of texture.

Next, I added color by spraying various colors of inks onto the dried gesso.

On top of that, I used a star stencil to create stars with Liquidex Modeling Paste. The Modeling Paste takes on the color of the inks underneath, so I ended up with colored stars throughout the page.

I cut the two dancers using dies and the Big Shot Universal Embossing and Cutting Machine.   I glued the dancers in place, then added the key and the leaf, which are both rub-ons.

At the bottom, I used a Sharpie pen to write the words Artfully Vague. I have no idea why those words came to mind, but they died. Maybe its because the dancers are silhouettes and the background has a misty quality.


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