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Weekly Photos 2017. 49/52.






1. Walking through the woods, looking at the ground.

2. I found a wasp’s nest, no wasps though.

3. The light in the woods was pretty this week.

4.  Watches for days.

5. Estate sale this weekend, found some treasure but not these chairs!  I like how the seats are all different colours.

Happy Monday x


My Daily Moleskine 2017. November Pages.


Giant bubble wrap is a brilliant tool to use with the Gelli plate!


I am putting far too many leaves into the planner!  The opposite page is a ‘ghost’ signature which is a word or name which is treated like an ink blot to make a shape or creature.


I went on a creative field trip and used the train and museum tickets for this page with a gingko leaf added.


Cut out from the newspaper and some colour added!


Face painting with sumi brush and ink.


Blind contour drawing and some brush script.


Some birthday wrap and labels along with a rose petal.


Gelli plate print of a fern leaf and gingko leaves.


My colleagues at the library bought me a birthday treat!


A ‘mini masterpiece’ inspired by the Fluid Art class along with some doodles.

Can you believe we are almost at the end of the year?  I have loved filling up this planner and it is so satisfying to see it nearly full.

Happy Thursday x

Weekly Photos 2017. 48/52





1. Fabulous texture and colour on a fire hydrant.

2. This guy was lost in the park, sitting on the bridge waiting for his owner to return.

3.  Green tiles on the outside of a building in Dutchtown, St Louis, MO.

4. This used to be the Brentwood Historical Society building, it is certainly history now.

Happy Monday x

Handmade sketchbook for the Season of Nature

I am beginning to get a bit obsessed with making books!  I love to make all the sketchbooks with different papers in different sizes with fold outs and accordions.  The more I make the more ideas I get for another one or two or three.

We are about to start the new season over in the Get Messy Art Journal community and it is going to be The Season of Nature.  I found a book called ‘A Field Guide to Animal Tracks’ not long ago and thought it would be perfect to make into a sketchbook for The Season of Nature. Once the pages were out I was ready to go!

I made two signatures and stitched one to each inside cover of the book so they open away fro each other.  I used pamphlet stitch to fasten them onto the edge of the cover.

I have made a pretty backwards book which started by stitching the papers onto the opposite side than expected, but I like the way the two books are working together already.  I have not made a gatefold like this before and I like it.

The paper inside the book is a mix of hot press watercolour paper, brown kraft paper and a couple of pages from a vintage book of nature.

It should be fun to work in and I am looking forward to filling it up!

What are your favourite sketchbooks to work in?  Do you have a regular book you like to use or do you make your own? How about a combination of bought and made?

Happy Thursday x


Weekly Photos 2017. 47/52








1. Giant palm frond.

2. Finds!

3. Which way? At Babler State Park in seventy degrees this week!

4. Leaf with a heart shaped hole.

5. A dilapidated barn.

6. Blue sky and dry grasses.

Happy Monday x


Printing giant leaves.


I was walking home from a successful trip to Goodwill last week and I spotted some huge palm fronds in my neighbor’s garden trash.  After checking that was ok with her I came home to get my garden snips and walked back to harvest a couple of pieces.

When I got home I left them in water for a couple of days until I had a clear time slot and a clear table.  I gathered some large sheets of paper and some smaller papers including rice paper, corrugated cardboard,  brown kraft paper, ledger paper, book paper from a vintage garden catalogue and of course dry wax paper.

I used a combination of gelli plate and adding paint directly to the leaves to print them, both worked well but I wish there was a giant gelli plate!!!







See!  Very big leaves!!

Once everything had dried, I wanted to make a book or two using my newly printed papers.




One book was made with a single sheet of printed paper folded into an accordion.  I glued the backs of the pages together to give it a bit more stability.  The paper I used was pretty thin, so the book is not bulky at all.  Then I used the brown paper as a cover.





The second book is a good ole pamphlet stitch book with 7 sheets folded and stitched down the spine.  There is no special cover just stitched and ready to go. For this book I used smaller papers like the book pages, ledger paper and sketchbook paper.

If you need book binding ideas and good instructions, check out Esther K Smith’s ‘How to Make Books’. I must have checked this book out of my local library a hundred times!

For all of these prints I used black gesso and a brayer to apply the paint either to my gelli plate to to the leaf directly.

Keep your eyes peeled and your gelli plate at the ready, you never know when inspiration or printing materials may appear!

Happy Friday x

‘I like’ Friday, a Creative Day Out.

Last Friday the library where I work was closed so I took myself on a creative day out.  I jumped on the Metro Link and headed to my favorite magazine shop to start my day.  I picked out a couple of mags and went on my way.  Along with my magazines I also had the little sketchbook which I literally made right before I left along with a few pens and a water pen filled with ink (one of my favorite things to use).




Back to the train and off to Forest Park and the St Louis Art Museum not forgetting to stop off and get a rosemary brown sugar latte (so good!) to walk across the park with.

The sun was shining and the trees were in their fall colours as I walked across the park to the art museum.


Once at the museum I made sure I kept my eyes and ears open.  You never know what you might hear in the galleries!  I made notes in my book and little sketches as I went.


As I walked to the museum I gathered some yellow gingko leaves with a view to sketching them when I got to a bench to sit on.  Also I noticed a couple of signs with bicycles on so I snapped them with my phone also to sketch when I got to sit.

Making little plans like this as I went really helped me capture the day in my sketchbook with words or sketches or taped in leaves!  More often than not, I will take a sketchbook out and be so self conscious I would do nothing in it.  This time I was determined and I to achieve this I made it easy to do for myself.  Which is why I gathered the leaves rather than drawing them on the spot and why I took photos of the signs instead of standing in front of them sketching and feeling silly and consequently rushing to be done rather than really looking.


I made no masterpieces but I did start a new sketchbook and got some ideas and some conversation tidbits to use at some point.

Even the title of a piece of art caught my attention – ‘In Praise of Flower Hunting’ – the title of a Japanese block print.  What a fabulous idea!  I want to make my own something inspired by these words.

While I sat in a dark room watching a photo exhibit I over heard some people outside as they walked by and one of them asked his friend ‘Did you fart?’ which was a moment of hilarity for me because I have the sense of humor of a toddler!!! Did I write that in my book? Of course I did!


These shadows demanded that I sit and paint them, so I did.  The window was off a gallery with some quiet seating, so I could get my book and ink filled brush out and make a quick sketch without interruptions from my self confidence.


These illustrations made my heart leap they are so beautiful, I wanted to look at the whole book!


This piece is full of print and collage on beautiful, it inspired me to find some gorgeous paper and make some art!

A lovely day out, I grabbed some Vietnamese noodles for a late lunch and headed home for when my kids arrived from school.


What is your ideal day?  Do you take yourself out on field trips when you can?  I certainly want to try and do this more.

Happy Friday x