Saturday, March 24, 2012

Me+Art Journaling=True Love

Epic Art Journalist Julie Fei-Fan Balzer has a great blog, and today she answered the main question: How To Get Started.  At the end, she asked everyone to list how each of us started as well.  So this is my story:

I'm very much a beginner, and totally new to "art."  I started out using Crayola products: watercolors (I'm still using these,) crayons, colored pencils, etc.  I figured that if I didn't like them, I hadn't wasted any money because my son plays with the same things.  And of course, with Crayola, the total for a little of everything was less than $10.

Well, and craft paint too--I've been what I consider a "crafter" for years now, so I had plenty of craft paint acrylics to use.

I've written in my journal my entire life--my mom encouraged this and I've never stopped.  She gave me my first journal at age 5!  So I started by adding a few pictures to my journal entries.  And then one day last year I leaped and created a full "Art Page."  It was a total failure but I LOVED it!!  I was hooked, and I've been consistently learning and experimenting ever since!

So I'm going to show my first Disastrous page and some others that stand out in my mind.  My apologies to these artists who inspired me--at the time, I never thought about showing my journal, so attribution was not important.
I had no plan, no idea of what to say, how to use the supplies I had just bought or anything else, but it was SO-MUCH-FUN!!  It reads "Don't let the Gray blind you from the Sparkles all around."  The inspiration was a cute pin on Etsy, a cloud with little heart crystal raindrops.

Luckily, even with this disaster, I had the idea to keep notes of what I'd done.

 And some favorites:
 I spent hours, an entire day actually, creating and making flower stencils of my own.  I've never used them to this day...but I felt the need back then.  I really liked this quick entry I made, using a printed page from something online and my Pitt Big Brush pens.

I used a black and white printable, colored over it with my Pitt Big Brush pens, and pasted a photo of my son on the next page, and covered both with tons of Mod Podge.  This is in my top 5 favorite pages :)

 It's a sketch I found on the web somewhere that I printed out in black and white and then painted over myself.  This was my first time using watercolors, which made the ink run, so I really turned this into a jumping off point for my own version.  I loved (LOVED!) what I'd made, and then used acrylics on the sky and learned the hard way that acrylics are OPAQUE and ruined my piece!  I was able to remove most of it, and ended up starting over the next morning once the page had dried, and was able to make something I love.  The quote above says "Yearning to hear the whispers of my soul."

All these pages are from last year.  I have some more recent works to show as well.  These are not necessarily in a journal, but I've been happy with these pieces:
 I had this page complete--my first "real" ART JOURNAL page, and then I ruined it by adding glitter to the words.  So I covered them with the same paper, but I no longer liked my quote, so it's been sitting for a while.  I finished yesterday, using "ART and Courage Becoming Friends" as a title.  I covered the entire page with packing tape, a move I may later regret, in order to protect it from paint overflow from other pages--I get messy with the edges :)

Another recent favorite, I have no idea where the title came from, but once I had the 3 pink pictures together, the title "Only Wake Me Early If You've Brought Me Pink Roses" jumped into my mind.  NO IDEA where this came from--hubby never buys me flowers, and I thought I was fine with it--he gives me gifts all the time, just not flowers--and I get up early for no reason all the time.  Oh well, I'm putting this in the Art For Art's Sake column.

And for last, this is the outside of my current art journal.  The cupcake is white, brown and red felt, with marker "sprinkles" so it stands out against the white page, along with a flower and a K both painted with metallic paints.  I've titled my journal "Flowers and Cupcakes" to reflect my recent obsessions.  I couldn't use the flash because the entire thing is also covered in clear packing tape for protection--why did I choose white?  Oh well :)
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