Saturday, February 18, 2017

Adventures in Art Journaling

Back in early summer of last year, I began an art journal with a page called 'Let the Adventure Begin!' I started out with a layer of black gesso, then used copper Dazzles stickers to embellish the page. The final touch was to add some texture with rubber stamps using copper ink. 

I was so excited to finally be starting an art journal after a couple years of just thinking about it. Once this first page was done, though, I abandoned my journal in favor of more timely projects that came up, mostly birthday and Christmas cards.
With the start of the new year, however, I resolved that I would do my best to keep moving on the art journal project. Below is the next set of pages I created in early January. I started out with white gesso and then gradually added lavender acrylic paint with the intent to leave the center area lighter than the edges. To be honest, I made this background before the black and copper page, but I just could not figure out what I wanted to do with it. One of the groups on Facebook that I'm a member of recently became active again, and in one of our conversations the phrase "butterfly mind" came up. "Blissful moment..." is from a creative prompt. I was tickled pink (or lavender, lol) when I realized the two phrases play well with each other! Naturally, I had to include some butterflies, so I started by stenciling some in a slightly darker purple onto the page. The gold and white crocheted butterflies were the last to be added, along with a few clear gemstones to bling things up a bit.

The third set of pages has a beautiful stenciled background that I was quite proud of and didn't want to cover up. After admiring the Flirty Flamingo (a current Stampin' Up! In Color) background, I finally decided I wanted to do flowers. I grabbed the perfect set of flower dies from Paper Wishes and proceeded to give my Big Shot a workout. I wasn't initially sure that the papers I chose coordinated with the page, but at the encouragement of a couple friends I forged ahead and started building up the flower layers. The white paper that you see has specks of gold in it, and that really jazzes up the page. (Click on the picture to enlarge it!) I knew I wanted to add a hummingbird since it goes so well with the saying I used, "Hope is a waking dream," so I was elated when I found I owned the perfect hummingbird die.

I generally don't like doing collage work, but last week I got a wild hair to make one. It all started when yet another Good Housekeeping magazine that I never ordered appeared in my mailbox. As much as "good housekeeping" does not apply to me, the thought of simply throwing the magazines away pained me. So I started flipping through them and pulling out images and words that appealed to me. I ended up with a rather large pile! The next natural step was to start trimming and layering the clippings into my art journal. I found some words that spelled out a message perfectly: "Happiness is real easy... Look for those with heart, and activate your own awesome, good, real heart." The box in the lower right corner reads: "This is not a quick fix. This is my decision to make beauty last." I have no idea if the message makes sense to anyone else, but to me it's rather profound.

Below are some closer-ups, and if you wish to see it even closer just click on the picture.

Upper Left
Lower Left
Upper Right
Lower Right
As you can see, I also added a bunch of hearts, a few hummingbirds, and a black border to hold it all together. The hearts both match the message and are a nod to Valentine's Day, which was when this project was finished.

Once I was satisfied with my collage, I sealed it with matte Mod Podge. In the process the magazine paper wrinkled, but I'm considering those paper wrinkles to be texture added for overall effect! :)

I'd be remiss if I didn't point out my Turkey Lady on the far right. She even wore a scarf to celebrate the holiday! (I'm so easily amused, lol.)

So that's my art journal to date. I anticipate future posts about it will be much shorter than this one. If you have any questions or observations about any part of the project, please leave a comment for me and I will get back to you.

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My next project involves making some ATCs (Artist Trading Cards) and something called Pocket Letters, but first I have some completed cards to show you in the next post. Stay tuned!

Happy smiles,
Joyce Spear a.k.a. StamperJoyce

Friday, February 17, 2017

Valentine's Day Cards

I don't ordinarily make cards for Valentine's Day, but this year I decided to swap cards with a StampNation sistah -- and while I was at it I ended up with three more cards.

The card began with some simple stenciling using the color Party Dress from Catherine Pooler Designs' new line of ink pads:

Next, I narrowed down my stamp choice to the Stampin' Up! Host set called 'Love You Lots' because the critters featured in the set are so adorable. I had great fun using colored pencils to color the hedgehogs, ladybugs, and frogs.

I used the Sweet & Sassy framelits and the Stitched Shapes framelits to create layers and add interest.

The sentiment is from another set -- I don't recall the name, but anyone needs me to look it up I'll be glad to.

The final touch was to add a few strategically placed sequins on each card.

The frog I referred to earlier was stamped on each envelope and also colored with pencils... but I forgot to take a photo. (Sorry!)

The cards turned out cuter than I had imagined them, and I'm already looking forward to making next year's valentines. (Let's hope that feeling lasts another year, lol.)

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Coming up next: a quick update on my Art Journal, including an introduction to the Turkey Lady. ;)

Heart-y smiles,
Joyce Spear a.k.a. StamperJoyce

Happy New Year 2017

Here's a card I made at the end of 2016 to give to someone for the New Year's holiday, but then forgot to send.

I began by blending Fossilized Amber, Worn Lipstick, Salty Ocean, Broken China, and Wilted Violet distress inks onto heavy white cardstock. I added the black die cut of a cityscape and then began embossing fireworks stamps from The Ton's Pyrotechnics set in a variety of colors of embossing powder.

I mounted this colorful piece onto a Basic Black card base and then used Stampin' Dimensionals to add a black banner with the words 'The best is yet to come' embossed in white.

The inside of the card simply says 'Happy New Year' amid another shower of fireworks. The photos only hint at how sparkly the entire card is.

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Coming up next: Valentine's Day cards and an update on my Art Journal.

With optimistic smiles,
Joyce Spear a.k.a. StamperJoyce