5

Art Journal Stalemate

Art Journaling has become very trendy over the past few years. I myself have started quite a few, but I always seem to get to a point where I stopped. This bothered me for quite a while as it seems as if I could never get more than just a couple of journal pages before I became bored with it. Until now…

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You probably recognize this lil gal from my post on Emotions & Art

After pondering why, I could never seem to really get enthusiastic about art journaling, I finally realized that it was because I am the type who tends to advance quicker and more fluidly when my process has some type of organized thought process behind it.  So I began my own “Girls” Art Journal.

 

Since beginning this journal on the 10th of June, it seems ideas for new pages are coming to me consistently and I am having such a great time filling my pages.

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This is also a wonderful place for me to test out new color schemes, new products, new theme ideas etc… For example, with the Fall Girl above I wanted to try out a darker skin tone than I typically use. By testing it in my journal, it took the pressure off and allowed me just to be free to experiment.

My next page spread I wanted to see how I would like using colored pencil for part and then watercolor paints for other parts. Just me testing a different way to come up with skin tone and textures, so my Mermaid Girl was created.

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My latest girl, the Naturalist Girl, was a mixture of watercolor crayons, paints, acrylic marker pens and colored pencils. My focus on her was to make her more whimsical.

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Now that I finally figured out why the journals were so hard for me to stick with my mind is jumping ahead to other theme type journals I could do. It feels so nice when you finally figure out what it was that had you at a standstill.

 

How about you? How do you motivate yourself to work in your art journal(s)? Do you use prompts? Do you do theme’s? Maybe you prefer having one journal for everything? What motivates you to keep filling up your pages? I would love to hear from you.

 

Hugs & Love – Ranae’

5

Techniques’: When is it your own?

I have my own style in many things but lately with my girls I have taken to following Tamara Laporte’s wondrous tutorials. I always try to make some part of each tutorial unique in some way. Yet I find myself leery of saying it is 100% my own yet.

For example, I recently completed one of Tam’s tutorial called the “Merry Muse” The photo below is Tamara’s work.

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(Click Here for more info on this tutorial)

To make it more my own I used a different color palette and I changed the items in her hands from a Celtic Harp to Moon and then made my dove different with no crown. See my take on this tutorial below.

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So yes it looks different than Tam’s yet similar still because the techniques used are pretty close to the same.

My next project I decided to still use the techniques I have learned from Tam but I didn’t follow her tutorials directly and even drew my very own girl without any visual aids from anyone else’s works. In other words, the girl is totally my creation.

However, once I completed her, in my mind she is still not really mine. She is not from any tutorial, she is not a copy, and yet she still doesn’t feel like all mine. Simply because the techniques I used were all learned from Tam.

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I would be very interested in what others may think. If you are learning techniques from other artist’s when does what you are working on become your own work? Does every technique used needs to be 100% your own idea? Does it become your own if you mix one learned artist’s technique with another’s? How do you get to that point where you feel your creations are all yours?

I personally have no answer, I am still on the journey to developing my own personal style, technique and cohesive works. However, I know one thing…

Learning various techniques from various artist’s is definitely a great way to keep me moving forward in this journey. So to all those wonderful artists’ that share their own techniques, trials and tricks with us I thank you with all my heart! Thank to each of you, I am confident that one day I will be able to do the same and will have my “own” unique style and techniques.

Hugs & Love from – Ranae’

3

Emotions and Art

It’s still funny to me how often emotions change the way an art piece will look. For example, I decided I wanted to start a new art journal and fill it will girls. So on May 30th I opened up my brand new Strathmore Soft Cover journal book and began to sketch.

My sketch quickly showed all the emotions I was feeling on that day. You see it was my middle daughter’s birthday and sad to say that she and I are not in contact with each other, it was also the day my Oldest daughter contacted me with some hardships she is going through, which only intensified my sadness. It was an emotional time and yes I cried as I sketched. My girls eye’s seemed to carry every emotion I felt, and I now wish I had scanned her when she was just a sketch so I could show you just how much she changed.

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I just finished her today and was sharing her with a friend of mine when I realized she no longer looked deeply sad but more wistful instead. I am thankful for that and quite pleased with the end results. As I pondered this I noted that it was actually only a couple of very slight changes that made her lose some of that sad look. The corners of her mouth were evened out and no longer curved down and the slant of her eyes opened up a bit.

As I thought of this I realized how our emotions often can change in somewhat the same manner. A slight change here or there can also change how we are feeling. A change of scenery can often bring us from feeling dreary to feeling hope. A relaxing bath can help take some of the stress of our day away. A kind word from a stranger may make us forget the heaviness we were feeling only moments ago. It’s really quite amazing when you think about it, how often we literally decide (without realizing it) to stay in our down frames of mind, when all we really need to do is make one tiny change, then another tiny change, here and there until once again we are at least feeling wistful instead of sad and then from wistful to happy again.

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So next time you’re feeling low try to remember that often the slightest change is the first step to feeling better quicker. Just like our Art our emotions can be changed if we just try a little something else.

Hugs & Love – Ranae’

 

 

 

 

6

Those Wonderful Mishaps

While I was working on Tamara‘s Winter Soul Flakes girl I had used the golden brand gel medium to glue the paper pieces to my background. So when I went to use the neo color crayons over top as she did, mine just does NOT want to keep the color, it was acting like a relief instead and was ickkk. lol

Soooo, I tried to put gesso over those bits and wound up with a very muddy background. Which I was not really happy with.

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So after asking advice from some of Tam’s other fans and still not being sure what to do, I did a test with 3 different adhesives. Decoupage Matte – Golden Matte Medium – Liquitex Matte Gel. As you can see in the attached photo, they first two still show the glue line when the watercolor crayon is used. However, the Liquitex Does not, it also holds the color better.

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Now this in itself did NOT solve my entire dilemma lol Why? Because I already adhered my pieces and my background is NOT what I want. lol Sooooo  I decided to go ahead and gesso over the background.

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This however in itself would not be enough because it will put me right back at having a surface that is not going to absorb enough to use the water based crayons I wish to use. Soooooooooooo ( lol ) After having covered the back with the gesso, I have also added 3 thin coats of Golden’s Absorbent Grounds.

Once this one completed I again added NEW scraps of paper using the “Liquitex Matter Gel” this time. From there I continued on and was able to finally finish my girl and am quite pleased with the results. Especially having been thinking I was about to ruin her completely.

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So thanks to a wonderful mishap, I learned a few tricks and valuable lessons! It’s ok to be frustrated when the mishaps happen but don’t give up! This is further proof that everything can be fixed, sometimes we just need some trials and error’s.

Hugs & Love – Ranae’