healing haven

April 30, 2016

Zentangles Mardi Gras shoes

Recently I had the opportunity to tangle some shoes for a friend who is part of the ‘Muses’ Mardi Gras crew.  They hand out (not throw) decorated shoes rather than beads.  I finished doing 6 shoes for her.

2016-2-2 Margi Gras shoes 4x6

The first shoe I did was a black heel using a gold metallic paint pen for the tangle design I planned following the contours of the shoe.  I also tangled on the heel itself.  Then I used gold paint on the inside and black with gold specks alphabet letters to adhere the word “Muses”.

11-2 shoe black heel front

11-2 shoe black heel heel

Then I did a light pink canvas shoe whereupon I followed the stitching to plot out my design.  A black Sharpie marker worked well on the outside.  I also painted the inside with black paint and used various colored Sharpies for decorating the patterned bottom of the shoe.  I later added black paint to the area of the bottom which is still gray in picture.  Again the word “Muses” is on the shoe.

10-25 pink shoe side

10-25-pink shoe Stitched

I followed much the same process for the tan heel and the blue canvas shoe.

Finally, I was fortunate to tangle one of my partner’s baby shoes which she had just found.  A black Sharpie worked beautifully on both the shoe and the shoelace after being washed.

12-27 baby shoe tangled front   12-27 baby shoe tangled side inner

Making these shoes for the Mardi Gras Parade was a new and intriguing project for me.  I enjoyed the creativity and imagination needed to decide the pattern for each shoe so it flowed in a natural way with the actual physical design of the shoe.

I have used these pictures in both my Project Life album and for The Documented Life Project.  In addition, they are now a part of my partner’s memoirs.

 

 

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February 11, 2015

Negative Space Acrylic Layering

I had just seen a wonderful video entitled “Mixed Media Negative Planets” by Dana C on a Youtube Pinterest post and was really intrigued by the idea of working with negative space.  Then the prompt for The Documented Life Project was “Layering; when not to stop” so it seemed like the ideal time to try the new technique resulting in this final set of pages:

2-9 DLP layers 2 w-stars

However, I started by gessoing the center fold of the pages so no paint would seep through.  Then splotched on acrylic paint and gesso, stencil and stamps, dabs of this and that, winding up with this hodge-podge.

2-7 DLP layers 1

The next step was to take my circle stencil and make a few circles over interesting areas in pencil.  Then took a mix of light purple and gesso and painted over it all except for the circles.  This was the result:

2-7 DLP layers 2

Then with the circle stencil again I added a few more circle in pencil that generally touched the ones I had already.  Then painted with a slightly darker purple acrylic over everything but the old and new circles and the left side of the page where I plan to put a planner and journal leaving this:

2-7 DLP layers 3

Again, the same thing of making more circles generally touching those already there before adding a dark purple over everything but the circles and also adding a border on the left.

2-7 DLP layers 4

Started to outline the circles with pencil to have them stand out and have some shading as well as adding in date circles on the left.  This picture shows it as much bluer than the pages actually are.

2-7 DLP layers 5

Finishing touches of pen and charcoal around the circles and begin the planner/journal, which is so wonderful in organizing one’s thoughts and events.  In time, this journal will become a memoir for me and my family.

But couldn’t stop – still needed to add something else – stars.  But first I added black acrylic paint splatters, then silver acrylic with a stencil and added in stars and finally the tip-in for the month’s Art Challenge and Journal Prompt, resulting in these pages ready for more journaling and planning as seen at the top.  Here is a close-up of the “planets”:

2-9 DLP layers even closer

I was amazed by how the thought process of negative space is so very different from what one usually does in painting something.

September 24, 2014

Week 33: Document Life Project – use underpaper or paint wipes

The Week 33 prompt was to use underpaper or paint wipes as part of your art for the week.  My tip in used baby wipes and under paper cut into turtles placed all over.   I added two pictures I had taken of turtles who had visited my garden.  Washi tape is used to connect the extra page to the regular moleskine pages.

DLP underpaper turtle 1 page
The top turtle on the left, showing the month on the planner page below, is from under paper whereas the other numbered turtles are made from regular painted paper.

8-8 DLP turtles 2 pages

This then developed into the 3 pages with the back of the tip-in showing wonderful pictures of turtles from Pinterest along with a fictionalized ‘Legend’ of Turtle Time with Mother and Father Turtle.  This, along with the clock washi tape, provides their sense of long-lived, slowed-down time. Planner and journal are now ready for the week’s events and feelings.

8-13 DLP turtle time 3 pages

September 9, 2014

Week 32 Document Life Project Process

I am always intrigued how almost every prompt has coincidentally allowed for me to document my week in a meaningful way.  It happens again and again.  The prompt of “Use a Chinese fortune cookie saying” for Week 32 just happened to follow a week where I brought home the fortune – a practice I don’t usually do.  And not that the fortune was outstanding – it just seemed like a good idea.  I had brought home a paper placemat as well.  Since it was from a Chinese restaurant I was looking for an Asian themed background.

One of the gelli plate ages I had already done didn’t turn out very well.  The colors were darker than I like, but when I looked at the design, I saw it had an Asian look to it with a trellis background.  I added some stencil flowers of orange acrylic along with some vines of green and yellow.  The fortune itself was pasted on a piece of colorful orange from another project.

8-5 DLP fortune cookie 2 pages - Cr

I cut off the key design from the menu and used it as a side and top embellishment along with some orange washi to divide for the days of the week.  It was a great exercise in recognizing there are no mistakes in art that can’t be improved upon.  Just re-layer/re-paint.

On the back of the tip in I did some gelli plate printing and added a long ago picture of myself wearing a Chinese-style dress gotten in Panama.  On the center section I gessoed an interlocking block stencil which also added to the trellis look.

8-5 DLP fortune cookie 3 pages

Everything was then ready for planner page and journaling along with some memoir writing about the dress and Panama.  The fortune?   “From now on your kindness will lead you to success.”  This came in a week when I wondered whether kindness was worthwhile at time.  In a world where some people feel okay about spewing out their opinions and yet don’t want anyone else to express theirs in return, I sometimes momentarily wonder about it all.

It is an issue that brings to mind the saying: Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary?  Most people seem not to bother with the first question, much less the second and definitely not the third.  If they think something, it is necessary to opinionate it.  My father more accurately called it “diarrhea of the mouth.”

These pictures of the pages also then became printed out and included as part of my Project Life album.

 

 

August 22, 2014

Document Life Project: Week 34

This week the prompt for The Document Life Project Art Journal was to add numbers relating to your week.  After thinking about the numbers in my week, I realized that the dates themselves relate best to my week, so I decided to use my Becky Higgins ‘Rain’ Project Life cards, either whole or cut down or embellished, with the dates on each card taped so it hinges. Underneath and/or on each card will be the actual happenings and journaling of the day.   This is the tip-in page, with the background made from using a gelli plate, for the week so it has the dates of the last part of the week along with the washi tape which will attach the page to the rest of the moleskine journal:

DLP numbers 1 page
The following is the tip-in flipped over along with the first page of the planner so the numbers reflect the beginning and last of the week, all with hand-cut date numbers from the cut-down cards themselves:

8-19 DLP numbers 2 pages
And this is the completed 3 page inside spread ready for lots of journaling and recording memories of the week.  The right hand page is also made from using a gelli plate.

8-19 DLP numbers 3 pagess

What a great way to utilize some of my beautiful Project Life cards in yet another project!

 

 

 

 

 

August 12, 2014

Gelli Plate – inexpensive and homemade

I’ve looked into purchasing a gelli plate because I loved the look of what could be done with them, but I found they were too expensive.  So I wandered through Hobby Lobby just looking, not for a gelli plate, but for something that could function as a gelli plate with the same properties.  I came across craft foam in sheets with adhesive backings in the children’s section.

8-8 DLP gelli plate craft foam
Adhering two of the 6 x 9 sheets together added some thickness and give to a solid surface.  I’ve used mine over and over, washing it out in between, and keep getting great results.  It may soak up a little more acrylic paint than the regular and you can see that some of the paint remains on the sheets even after washing, but it still works great.  The price difference is worth it.

Here are some of the many backgrounds I’ve made with my inexpensive homemade gelli plate, the left side one used for a post honoring my mother, the right used as a base for a Document Life Project prompt, with the middle one still to be used

gelli backgrounds-Stitched-02

Here, the left shows 3 gelli plate with stenciling pages ready for journaling/planner for a Document Life Project set of pages and the right ready for use.

gelli papers-Stitched-03

(And I still have four more sheets in the package.  I have used these for art journaling Document Life Projects,  Project Life backgrounds for photos, and background for SoulCollage works, even for making greeting cards.)

 

August 7, 2014

Art Journaling Journey

For years I have been intrigued by the pictures of various art journals, both the images and the ideas expressed.  Usually the ideas are a phrase or a quote.  But I  also like to process and journal my feelings and patterns I discover within and without myself.  But for some reason I never attempted to actually art journal, keeping my journaling and memoir writing separate from any artsy stuff I would do.  I realize I never thought I could really do the “artsy stuff” myself.

A perfectionist artist father both gave me some tools for art and discouraged me from doing art, or even thinking of myself as an art person.  Soul Food Café facilitated by Heather Blakey, was the first internet site that really drew me in with its writing prompts and information on how to set up a blog. The group was inspiring and encouraging to someone just starting out.   I loved writing as I wove in memoir and experiences with the fantasy stories.

These became part of my blogging (see blogs starting at the beginning in 2008) and proceeding onwards for those writing regarding trips to Lemuria and Riversleigh.  Shortly afterwards I came across SoulCollage (formulated by Seena Frost) and Kaleidosoul (facilitated by Anne Marie Bennett) which really resonated with me by having both aspects of the collage making and journaling to specific questions from the collage picture made.  The questions used (see my SoulCollage-Kaleidosoul page for the list of questions) are as if the collage picture itself is speaking, allowing the unconscious to come forth at times.  I also used the collages I made as part of my posting in the Soul Food Café and Riversleigh posts.

thalia-collage-cropped

SoulCollage and Kaleidosoul questions and answers combined into Project Life cards for my album in addition to photos of my everyday life and special occasions.  Project Life has provided a rich tapestry of daily life in photos and words.  Some pages had more journaling than others, but generally was limited by the size of the inserted cards, even when using the back of the cards.

Wounded child card

Document Life Project took  everything one step further and really got me I into art journaling.  The prompts were inspiring for a page or two of doing art, as the Art to the 5th Academy website and Document Life Project facebook page had wonderful videos and instructions for learning how to use the wonderful tools of art available.  The moleskin journal recommended also included a page for planning (left side) and a full page for journaling (middle page) as well as the added yip-in art page (right side of gesso, acrylics and stencils).  This all truly combined my love of journaling with playing with art – a true combination of visuals and words.

DLP wish list 3 pages
(Pinterest has been an ongoing arena for inspiration for all of these, and other, projects.)

July 31, 2014

DLP Prompt: use a stamp in a new way

The prompt for Document Life Project one week was to use a stamp in a different way so I debossed.  This entails applying a thick coating of gesso onto a square piece of index card, then putting your stamp into the gesso.  Some of the gesso pulls off leaving an imprint that is raised and interesting.  I then used gold and pink acrylics brushed lightly on top.  I adhered the index card to a prepared page and added a small tag I had previously done but just added the leftovers of the debossing stamp for more texture.  Washi tape connects the page to the moleskin journal.

DLP stamp debossing

The next picture shows the other side of the tip-in with a red stamp randomly applied over the page to create more design.  Then a pre-designed tag was stamped twice to create depth and washi tape lace added both more depth and texture.

DLP stamp over page w-tag

The debossed tip-in with the prepped planner page and “To Do List” complete with a parchment flower and a picture from an old movie magazine allowing room for journaling about the week.

DLP stamp 3 pages w-parchment flower

A lovely week to insert and add to my Project Life album, which will remind me of the process long from now.  And will show what I am doing during my day along with other daily photos.

July 30, 2014

DLP Prompt: Favorite Shoes

The next prompt for Document Life Project, still for April, was to do something regarding our favorite shoes.  I have a very practical pair of shoes I need for any amount of walking and standing – they are good for balance.  My favorite for outings, not for comfort overall.  those would be my crazy, quilted red slippers.  So I wound up taking pictures of me wearing one of each since both are my favorite shoes.

DLP shoes prompt

Then I added words to describe each shoe and what each meant to me.  This prompt tip-in  illustrated the various aspects of my life.  Then I worked on another picture I had taken of me wearing the 2 different shoes but with a wide stance.   The associated words were then related to balancing the various aspects with each aspect going its separate way.  This was on the back side of the tip-in.

DLP shoes + calendar

Later I added the divisions for the planner pages on left and journal page underneath.  Of course, I took pictures of the pages and added them to my Project Life albums.

 

 

May 6, 2014

The Documented Life Project

Less than a month ago I came across “The Documented Life Project”  which combines, if you follow their pattern, using a planner plus adding art journaling with one weekly challenge.  There are some free video tutorials as well as fee-based workshops which are excellent.  Roben-Marie Roberts Smith, Lorraine Conte Bell, Rae Missigman, Barbara Copeland Moore and Sandi Keene are the five ladies who have organized this into a year long project complete with a closed facebook page for sharing one’s finished projects.

DLP

One could use collage, painting (either water coloring or acrylic), doodling, scrapbooking, anything that you enjoy in which to organize your planner and art and journaling facets of yourself.   There are no do’s or don’ts.  This gave me the information tutorials to know what to do and the freedom to play on my own.  I also take pictures of the album/planner pages so as to incorporate it all into my Project Life album pages.   Project Life will focus on people and events with a sprinkling of thoughts whereas DLP will focus on the thoughts of the interconnected week’s events and people therein related to the prompt.

Since I started so late in the year, I worked on Week 17 Challenge: utilize a food box into your journal.  I looked around and saw this cereal box from the health food store and saw how it related to what I had just started: clearing out my old Hospice papers from when I retired 3 years ago.  It also related in other ways which became visible as the week progressed.  I foresee SoulCollage cards arising from this collage, as well as others, of this tip-in cereal box with box parts re-placed and a collaged on statement relating to Passion (for hospice), Peace (as someone is dying), Giving Back (to others), Natural (die a natural death):

DLP - Mango Peach tip in

Then I worked on my calendar side with coordinating colors for the daily dividers, etc.  I also included a To Do List and a top tip-in on my calendar page honoring my start of the DLP.

4-24 DLP food 3 pages w-white-out

Finally I played with gesso combined with pink, cream and gold acrylics to form the foundation on the back of the tip-in to provide a base for more journaling carried over from the middle page within.

4-24 DLP pink-gold page w-calendar no words

I took pictures of the various layouts and added to the Documented Life Project facebook page as well as into my Project Life album for this year.  I keep both journals/albums open and move from one to the other, getting inspiration and enjoyment from each.

 

 

 

 

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