Saturday, March 25, 2017

Painted Paper Collage: Eagle

Working on an eagle collage, sitting with the results to date. Might make the feathers more distinct. Below is the step-by-step of how he was created.

Pencil and Derwent Inktense WC Pencil sketch.

Toner copy of the drawing transferred with gel medium to a collaged canvas.

Beak and eye collaged with gelli plate paper.

Tea dyed paper and lace rice paper added.
Final (to date) Eagle with paper details added with lace and gelli plate papers.

8 X 10 canvas, 150.00

Creative Collage: Hungry Bird

My Visual Art Journaling group is still meeting twice a month at my home studio in Northglenn, CO. but my creative collaging has been focused on mixed media collage on canvas or cradle board. Actually, the jury is still out about whether to call it "Mixed Media Collage" or "Painted Paper Collage". I use mostly painted or gelli plate printed papers but also use some specialty rice papers, Derwent Inktense Water Color pencils as well as occasional mechanically printed patterned papers and tea dyed dictionary pages. As I'm writing this I'm leaning towards Mixed Media Collage, even though that implies the use of dimensional elements, which I don't use. Tell me what you think.

I'm way behind on blogging about all the collaged bird canvases I've completed in the last year or so but I'm going to blog about the "Hungry Bird" canvas in this post and will post about the eagle I'm working on soon.

Original drawing in pencil and Derwent Inktense WC Pencils
Transferred a toner copy of the drawing to canvas using gel medium.
Rose patterned paper for inside mouth, tea dyed paper on breast.
Pencil sketched background. 

Additional tea-dyed (tea baked paper) and patterned paper added.

Additional paper and lace rice paper added.

Details of background blocked in with watercolor.

Working on shadow area below bird. Pink buds and stems papered.

Next steps.

Continuing to add grasses to foreground.

Iridescent papers added to the petals.

More grasses and blue sky painted in.

Final piece with softened sky and additional grasses, stamens.
I'll try to post a better picture of the final piece, this one looks a bit faded. I'm not sure what is so satisfying about painted paper collage but the fussy detail is right up my creative alley.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Activating Your Sacred Art Studio with a Collaged Candle

My studio candle and a Happy Buddha

7" x 7" collage including catalog images of sculptures from Sacred Source

Dollar Tree altar candle
I wrote a paper about creating personal altars as part of my Sandplay Therapy training.  My research into altars, from many traditions, lead me to understand that most altars have at least two things in common. The first is that altars are most often created to acknowledge the importance of something or someone we value in our lives. Another commonality is that a lit candle activates the altar and the sacred space (such as your studio).

Whether you are initiating sacred space for art making, workshops, groups, prayers, meditation or personal therapy, I believe that lighting a candle can enhance your important activity. I would like to suggest that you make this candle even more meaningful by creating a special candle for your studio.

You will need a 7" x 7" piece of flexible paper (I used a nice rice paper), an altar candle (I bought mine at Dollar Tree), images for collage, scissors, permanent glue stick (for collage) and paper craft glue (for attaching your collage to your candle).

Simply create your collage by cutting out and attaching images that relate to your art process and your creative life. I have an image of an ancient calendar (honoring the seasons), a picture of Ganesha (the remover of obstacles), an image of the triple goddess (the three ages of the feminine: maiden, mother and crone) as well as a window (view into other worlds) and art supplies. This collage represents the sacred nature of art making and group work that takes place in my studio.

You must choose your own imagery: your playful inner artist, an image of a muse or mentor, important family members, images related to personal goals. Don't over think this--just gather collage materials and allow you intuition to guide you.

Once your collage has been completed just wrap it around your candle, putting paper craft glue in a line at the two joining ends of your collage. If you only glue the joining edges you will be able to remove your collage from your candle, when the candle has burned down, and put it on a fresh altar candle if you want to. You might also like to make a new studio alter candle collage each year or season. Alternatively you could glue your 7" x 7" paper to the candle first, then add your collage images. The advantage of this is that the two ends of your collage will match in theme and color.

Enjoy this activity and please leave comments about what kind of studio candle you made for your sacred art space.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Altered Day Planner for 2016

2016 Altered Day Planner, hand designed stencil, gelli plate, collage

Planner, back. Tea-stained music sheets cut with stencil,
bubble wrap patterned gelli plate paper

2016 Altered Planner, collage, gelli plate,
Twinking H2O paint

2016 Altered Planner, Brush Dance design,
washi-tape tipped in pages.

For the last three years I've been altering a day planner from Brush Dance. I love adding custom
covers and adding extra pages with washi tape. I can't tell you how great it is to glue in monthly
mementos of events like post cards, photos, sketches and doodles, favorite quotes. At the end of the
year I end up with a perfect (for me) memory book for the year. Since it gets "fat" I keep it closed
with a dollar store elastic headband.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

More Flower Mandalas

Flower Mandala Page
Pam Carriker color wheel stencils, spray ink, collage, watercolor pencils, Gelly Roll pens

There is something wonderful about working within a circle. Love making marks, scribbles,
punching out colored dots, playing with color. What could be better? Great to gradually work 
on this page, coming back again and again to add layers of color and texture. I think one
day there will be journaled text all around these circles on the page, but taking my time. At this
point kind of like the stray stripes of yellow ink. 

Monday, April 27, 2015

Pink Flower Mandala

Pink Flower Mandala

Acrylic, collage, Twinkling H2O's, Gelly Roll Pens

I used Pam Carriker's color wheel stencil to start this piece. I'm obsessed with sectioned circles, spinners, mandala's
and labyrinths right now. Of course I've also been staring into the face of  flowers for years as well. Why?
It makes me happy. 

Lovey to walk the local labyrinth that happens to be close to where I live. Love the idea of entering being willing
to receive, receiving the peace of this walking meditation, then integrating that peacefulness on the way out.
Know it's different for everyone. Know that others have their own way of interacting with these millenniums
old constructions. Know that I will learn new ways of using this sacred interaction as the years pass as well.

Looking at this pink flower mandala I'm struck by a lot of things. How pink has not always been one of my favorite colors.
I remember as a child being angry that diluted red (weak) was the color assigned to girls while blue (strong) had been
assigned to boys, at least that's how it seemed. And blue is the color of the whole huge sky and the whole huge ocean
while pink seems mostly to dwell in the barbie aisle. I demanded a room with blue walls (strong) and refused to wear pink.
But now? I love how bight and vibrant it is. I love how it vibrates next to the blue. And pink relates nicely to spring green.

I also really enjoyed scribbling on this piece. And, I enjoyed scribbling with the eraser tool in photoshop today.
I thought of Jackson Pollack and his scribbles of poured paint and thought about how Jackson would have liked the kind
of disembodied but fully engaged marks I scribbled. Man, is it all about going back to that primal scribble to just purely
enjoy those ecstatic scribbly marks?

I'm also noticing that those seeds at the center of the flower made by punching holes in patterned paper. Despite
that vibrant pink they seem to have the most presence in this piece.  I think I've been thinking a lot about getting
older (and going to seed, lol) and what I'm creating for the future. How I will give to future generations?
Not sure, but I will keep you informed.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Enough Owl Energy

"Enough Owl Energy"

DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylic applied with a small Gelli Plate, roller, brush. Stenciled with
fluid acrylic (white).  Lettered with Identipen, outlined with Gelly Roll Pens.


I've been neglecting my blogs.  This one about visual art journaling and my other about sacred art
including art therapy and SoulCollage "Healing Art Works".  In this new year I intend to get the
energy going in both of them again. Today I went to Alice's house to make pages.  I think this group
(Eileen, Alice, Tisa, Betty, myself, and others cycling through) could be called the Raven Journal
Group.  The raven is a symbol of the crone, and all in our group are over 50, with a few of us
a bit farther down that road.  I mention this because it feels like my task this year is to "accept
the things I can not change", which mostly boils down to coming to terms with getting old. Not
enough energy, not enough time to do all those things on my life's "to do" list.

My monkey (neurotic) mind has been taking note that, like a car past its warranty, parts of this 
body are no longer in the pristine shape it was, say, 30 years ago. Each birthday (July) and each 
winter (cold) seems to gift me with a new ache or line. This new year has been newly bulging
blue veins and newly sagging skin. Sigh. Also new worries about where money is going to come
from when the child support stops this year; the additional issue that surfaced yesterday. Yes,
I am both a senior and a single mom to a teen who graduates from high school this year. Oh did
I mention the employment problems most adjunct college instructors are experiencing?

I think that universal health care is necessary but it has also meant that employers have limited
most of us to 2 classes or less. So with all this weighing on my mind I brought my trick bag of
supplies and my journal to my group, almost staying home because of a bad case of angst.

So above is the page that emerged. Love the gem colors of the DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics. Used
the smallest gelli plate to stamp on color and texture. Rolled off the color from my brayer; got my
brush in there as well. Then stenciled with a doily stencil, pouncing on with a makeup sponge.

At first the stenciled patterns made the page look like the rose windows of a church. Then I noticed
that the colors seem to vibrate and radiate. Then the words came: "Enough Energy", "Enough Time",
my word for the year "Courage". Then I saw that those energetic circles looked like owl's eyes.
Which made me think of the wise owl and the "Wisdom" that can come with age. I love it when the 
message of my journal pages is inescapable. The energy of this spread can not be denied. 

Despite my anxiety about life's realities I can see and feel this message: See things clearly, there is
enough energy, there is enough time. The croning process can bring wisdom. Take courage.