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100 days of freeform mandalas 1-10

Yay! I am loving the 100 day project so far. Yes, I know, easy to say when we are only at day 17 out of the 100 required days, but I am not feeling the pressure and I am enjoying my mandala making. I think one of the main reasons I am liking it so much this year is that I haven’t restricted myself to a sketchbook or one paper type to make them on.  In fact I am sure at some point I will make a mandala which doesn’t even involve paper. Some are in art journals, a Moleskine sketchbook, a handmade sketchbook, a vintage library card, on an old black and white photo and on a sheet of ledger paper. I do need to find a box or envelope to keep the loose ones all together though or I can see that by the end of the 100 days I won’t remember where half of my mandalas are! Are you doing the 100 day project?  How is it going? Happy Thursday x   …

The Sketchbook Project 2018

The Sketchbook Project is hosted and housed by the Brooklyn Art Library and I got my little sketchbook many months ago! This is an amazing and unique project in that it is not curated, you buy a sketchbook, fill it up following the Art Library guidelines, send it back to Brooklyn and you are in.  Your book filled with your art is on a shelf along with the other sketchbooks waiting for someone to pick it out and browse it’s pages. I removed the original pages and made an accordion fold out which I painted both sides of and glued it back in. The theme I chose is ‘People I wish I knew’ and my book title is ‘Vintage names and modern faces’.  I snipped out some names from a vintage encyclopedia and glued one per page/face and painted a face onto each page. On the reverse side I painted a loose pattern. I still think this is a wonderful project and I will be signing up for 2019! Happy Monday x  

Get Messy Season of Kindness Week 7.

I have been practicing my faces this week guided and encouraged by the talented Katie Smith from Studio Katie and Get Messy Art Journal in the run up to the new class called ‘Sketching Faces’ and hosted by Get Messy. The top ladies are painted in black ink using a sumi brush and using a template provided by Katie which I put under my paper as a guide.  I like to put my own style on my faces and I am learning so much from this class and getting more confident at faces which are not straight on, like profiles and turned to one side slightly. I used my new favorite paper for these sketches which is ‘Tomoe River’ paper, it is lightweight but still stands up to ink without warping too much. The middle faces are painted onto vintage ledger paper which has a nice rough texture and absorbs the ink giving an interesting look. The last girl has painted botanicals in her hair and I used a stencil with ink in a mister to get …

‘I like’ Friday. Top Tips from vintage books.

I recently picked up some excellent books from the library sale cart and the local antiques mall. Old books are among my favorite things, the covers, the advice and the illustrations.  I love the books which were obviously very fashionable and cutting edge in their information at the time of publication.  Of course some of the writing is out of date and sometimes hilarious but a lot of it is still relevant and timeless. ‘New Bodies for Old (Why, Where and How to Exercise for Figure, Beauty and Health)’ by Dorothy Nye  was written as a guide to exercise written in 1936 and it has some sage advice for would be exercising ladies. On the first page, second paragraph we are treated to the following wisdom about the ideal body shape. “It is, primarily, a figure of bone and muscle over which a silken skin stretches in taut perfection. ” No pressure then…. They use the Rockette dancing chorus from Radio City as an ideal, citing measurements to aim for –   Top tips from …

Get Messy – Season of Colour Week 4.

Lots of colour play this week, using a few colours and using lots.  I learnt that I don’t love using yellow! I painted on these vintage library catalogue cards using a very marvelous tutorial and idea from Julia via the Get Messy members blog. What to do with the cards now? I added two of them to a page I started in my Season of Colour journal (made from paper bags and atlas pages).  This page was a fighter, I almost painted ‘I hate this page’ all over it at one point (I am not even a little bit joking!). But I persevered and after a slice of orange in my corner, I jumped back into the ring and finished the page. I am so pleased that I didn’t scribble all over the page in a tantrum! Happy Thursday x

Get Messy Season of Contrast Week 6

The last week of the Season of Contrast has come around so quickly. There have been so many great ideas through the prompts and tutorials, I have not kept up, but that just means a wealth of ideas for me to try in future pages. I am new convert (as of a few hours ago) to paper weaving.  The effects are amazing and I am so new to it, most of what I have done so far (see above) came mainly as a surprise. The process for me is still evolving, but I am loving it so far.  I applied a little planning and then let the papers do the work. For the weaving I used magazine pages and images, a vintage dictionary page and a 1950’s accounts ledger book as well as a painted page from an old book. None of it has made it to my journal yet, the ledger will stay as it is and I may add to the page, but it could be finished now in my opinion. Thanks to …

Get Messy Season of Contrast Week 5

I set out this week to follow some ideas from the tutorials over at the Get Messy website as well as a prompt or two.  I even wrote down some ideas of things I could do in my sketchbooks. Lots of contrast was achieved I think and I almost managed to leave part of a page blank, but I ended up with some gold and a black gesso ‘hole’ on it instead. I had a go at contrasting patterns in my mini Moleskine and a page of black and a page of white with a little red flower. There are some contrasting colours on the last page which is in my ‘The Shape of Towns’ altered book and I decided to cut a circle out of one page to reveal the head of a statue on the previous page.  Of course once I had the head, I had to sketch in the rest of the statue onto my page. I wandered off from the prompts a little and even got distracted from the tutorial I …