Archive for May, 2011

Since I started taking the Strathmore Visual Journal Workshops, I’ve been spending a lot of my time in the “multi media” room playing with paints and journals.  I haven’t even unpacked my sewing supplies and machine from retreat.  Still haven’t finished the journal cover I started at retreat or finished the cover for the handmade journal.  Instead I’ve been playing with my art supplies.  The first page of the handmade journal is done.  It turned out really well and looks good when you see it in person, I just can’t get a good photo of it because of the gold metallic glaze I used as a final layer.

First page of journal - pic didn't turn out well

Then I decided to do a watercolor painting of Toby using the new paints I got for Mother’s Day.  It turned out pretty well, better than I expected.  I posted the pic on Facebook and Jessica commented that she didn’t know I painted, I posted back that “neither did I”. 🙂

Toby - Journal page

Since starting to work in my art journals, I’ve been checking out the blogs of other art journalers.  Some of them are teachers and post free tutorials on art/visual journaling, drawing/sketching, etc…    Whenever one of them mentions drawing, they also say, “Don’t say that you can’t draw, it just takes practice.”  So I have been practicing and also working my way through the book “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain”.  The book helps you to develop and use the visual/perceptual right side of your brain, over the verbal/analytical left side. 

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain

Alot of you have heard the story about the 8th grade art teacher that on the second day of classes asked me to transfer to another elective class because I would be wasting his time and mine by staying in the art class.  Let me tell you I was one traumatized eighth grader and it was many years before I tried to do anything with art again.  Now I realize that the teacher didn’t want to teach art, he wanted students who already drew well so he could mentor them.  So now I’m sketching and practicing, having fun, and it’s for myself.  I’m not trying to impress or prove myself to anyone. 

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Our Mallard Visitors

We have new visitors to our yard.  They sure eat a lot of the bird seed, but it’s fun to watch them waddle around the yard.  The female eats the most and waddles all around checking things out and the male follows along behind her.  Toby loves to watch them even if he’s not quite sure what to make of them, then when he’s had enough he tries to catch them even though they are as big as he is. LOL
We have been having the craziest weather.  It can’t decide if it’s summer or late winter, one day it is in the mid 90’s and then like today it is the low 60’s.  Not good for my Fibromyalgia but I’m armed with pain med patches, there are days that I look like I’m trying to quit an extremely serious smoking habit. 🙂
This year I had a really nice Mother’s Day.  Kerry came down and we went to lunch and then shopping.  She bought me a bunch of toys art supplies, and Steven & Jessica sent me White Earl Grey tea in a beautiful tin covered with a gold foil japanese print paper.  So now I’m all set to play in my art journals while drinking tea.
I like my Strathmore Visual Journal with the watercolor paper, but I don’t care for the ring binding in the center.  So I decided to make a journal that would lay flat and not have any interuption in the center of the two pages.  Making my own book was so much fun that I can see me making more of them in the future.  I used 9×12 mixed media paper folded in half, 5 pages per signature and there are 6 signatures in the journal.  It was so easy sewing the signatures together.  I think it took as long if not longer to fold all the papers.  In the photos the journal doesn’t have a cover yet.  I have since covered it and worked on the first page, but since it has been so overcast lately I don’t have any pictures of that yet. 

Journal without cover


Journal open to lay flat

As always click on the photos to enlarge.

I’ve been trying to improve my sketching/drawing skills.  I found a book that is supposed to really help and I’ve been slowly working my way through it, there will be more about that in the next post.


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