April 1, 2013

Art Journal....my very first page

Hey everyone, hope your week is off to a good start.  Before I share my fun post for today I want to remind you that April 1st means Gossamer Blue's new kits are up for sale.  Looks like they're going quickly....no joke....so be sure to check them out.  I absolutely loved this month's kits.  If I had to hand pick items for kits, this would be the stuff!  I'll be sharing lots of projects throughout the month using kit items so please visit often.  Also, our Guest Designer for April is Jennifer Kinkade.  Her work is fabulous and she's loving the mixed media on her work lately.  I instantly love her.  :)

That leads me right into today's post.  If you've been following my blog and Twitter then you know I'm dabbling with the mixed media too.  I have been doing lots of research on fun products, watching art videos like crazy and I've been collecting new supplies.  Here's a little shot of some of my new art supplies below. I'm so excited to be trying new things.  Don't worry...I still make cards, I still do Project Life, I still do fun packaging.  It might be all be a little more mixed up though as I discover new techniques to try.  New to me, I should say.  I'm not reinventing the wheel...just getting my feet wet in something new!
A while back, I believe last Summer, I offered up a kit in the shop using some Studio Calico 4 x 8 journals.  I compiled my supplies for own journal but never really got far.  I dug out that basket and am happy to report that I'm using it all again.  I thought it would make a perfect art journal, where I could try out new mixed media techniques without having any fear of commitment.  No pressure, no assignments...just experimenting to see what happens.  

When I first thought of creating art journal pages I immediately thought of of far out there, artsy creations that were way out of my style.  Then I got to thinking that an art journal is whatever you want it to be.  There are no rules.  There is no style to follow.  That's the beauty of an art journal.  There's also no pressure, no fear of failing, no judgement is needed.  So I'm going for it.  

The other thing I noticed when looking into art journals is that a lot of the focus is on using people and faces as focal points.  Eeek, drawing faces just scares me.  I've done my share in art classes and it's not my fave.  So I needed another focal point for my journals.  That's where all my fun mini Instagrams will come into play.  They're perfect!  Whether I find some Pinterest photos (just for my personal use only) or I use photos of flowers I've taken, etc I think they're going to be great.  So I printed off a bunch and will keep them in a little basket.  Each time I finish an art journal page I'm going to reach for a new Instagram and just dabble some more.  I hope you're inspired.  If not....just play along and don't tell me how bad it is, okay?
I dug right in on my first journal page and kind of forgot to snap the beginning photos.  But here is my 4 x 8 page in the early stages.  The base pages of my art journal are just pieces of patterned paper that I like.  This particular page had gridline circles on it.  I started out by punching more patterned paper circles and adhering them with matte gel medium from Claudine Hellmuth.  This stuff is like glue or mod podge.  You just slather it on your paper then slap it down.  I use my palette knife like I talked about last time.  I then added some old book paper.  This shot also shows some purple-y shading which is my Pan Pastels.  Lastly I used my Christy Tomlinson stencil from Pink Paislee and sprayed on some October Afternoon mist. 
Then I got daring.  And bright.  I used watercolors with lots of water to add some paint to the top of my journal page.  Then I tilted the page at an angle so the paint would run down the page.  Very cool.  Very fun.  And bright. 
One of the mixed media artists that I've found and really like is Dina Wakley.  Her artwork is bright and colorful and she has great design tips.  I purchased her book called Art Journal Freedom and it's awesome.  If you've seen her book, you might be saying, "Mish, her style is not your style."  True, but what I love is that I can see beyond Dina's style and work her methods into what is my style.  Her use of design principles and color is just fantastic.  You can click on her book link and take a peek at a few of her book pages.  So inspiring and she offers tons of tips.  One of her tips is to use Viva paper towels to sop up wet paint.  The whole roll!  Simple roll over your wet paint...just ONE time....to soak up excess paint.  Viva because they don't have patterns and one time so you don't smudge your paint.  Cool, yes?
So now on to a favorite new product I love.  Gesso!  This is the white medium that you apply to prime canvases but it's so fun to wipe over a project.  You can use a paint brush but if you remember last time, I talked about how I like the palette knives.  So much easier to clean up.  I wanted to tone down the bright colors and I may have gone a little overboard.  But I still love my first journal page.  A little, a lot, it's all good.  I love that I can smear a bit over my photos too to make them blend into my background.  Gesso is awesome stuff!
Then came the modeling past.  I really just didn't know when to stop, right?  I used a Studio Calico stencil and my palette knife to spread it on. I love the texture of this stuff.  Oh, and I wanted to tell you about the circles.  I used a Derwent 4B (soft) pencil to scribble circles around the patterned paper circles before apply the modeling paste. I do love working with pencils and the soft graphite is more appealing to me than a black marker that I see so many art journal artists use.  Much more subtle.  
For a finishing touch I added a quote sticker from Cosmo Cricket and some machine stitching.  It was so relaxing and fun to try out new techniques on my art journal page.  It's a great way to find new techniques to incorporate into my cards, etc.  I've read that lots of you are interested in using mixed media and trying out your own art journal pages. I do hope that you will join me.  I've got something fun coming to the shop too that you might be interested in.  It's all in the beginning stages but I think you'll like it.  :)

Here's the beginning of my next art journal page.  I've dedicated a spot to just dabbling with my art.  This way I can work on it here and there whenever the mood hits.  For this art journal page, I'm hoping to achieve a more minimalist look with my mixed media, letting that awesome ledger paper shine through.  
Thanks for joining me today!  

10 comments:

Erica said...

Beautiful! An art journal sounds like so much fun. I can't wait to see what you create :)

Michelle LaPoint Rydell said...

Your first art journal page is beautiful! I love the colors and layers!

Susan Coan said...

This is really awesome!

JeanFB said...

Great page! I love that you took something that was your "thing" (instagrams) and made it the focus of your page. Wonderful!

allmixedup art said...

great job on the art journal page...love the circles and the gesso adds the right touch!

Joan V said...

Awesome. Thanks for sharing.

alexandra s.m. said...

What a great post and I love what you were able to accomplish Mish!
very beautiful and inspiring in so many ways ;-)

Thank you~

Patricia/NYC said...

Beautiful page! I love the dripping purple :) looks like you're a natural for art journaling!

Cynthia Lee said...

GREAT first page!

Cynthia Lee said...

GREAT first page!

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