Thursday, March 26, 2015

A New Skill

This week I learned/relearned how to make hand made recycled paper, and it might be my new favorite thing! I have been cutting paper for book leaves which leaves me with a bunch of odd shaped scraps and I have finally found a way to recycle them. 
I made a little paper screen out of two old photo frames and some stiff tutu tulle (since I didn't want to buy a whole roll of screen from home depot.) I used my own scraps of paper as well as brown paper bags making this a recycling project. Some of the paper has sparkles in it and I dyed a few sheets using acrylic ink. Each sheet of paper measures approximately 5" by 8". 
The past few days I have immersed myself in paper making as well as paper marbling videos. I am slightly obsessed! I plan to master these skills and see where they lead me. Sometimes learning something new opens new doors to different ideas and concepts, which is always a good thing while making art. 
I have not quite figured out what I want to do with this paper and I am already planning another batch. It may turn into journals, art, cards or I might just sell it as is in my book shop.   :)

Monday, March 23, 2015

Back to Work!

Spring Break is over....It was fun, relaxing and reasonably productive and I have piles of paper and paint all over the floor to prove it. But it's time to get back to the dance studio...the other art that I love so much, and the pain that comes with it (and maybe I'll clean up some of that mess....)

This weekend Sebastian added a keyboard synthesizer to his growing instrument collection which means my weekend soundtrack consisted of electric guitar and all the fun sounds the new keyboard makes! While he was playing with his new toys I took a break from my current paintings to paint some more mushrooms. There was no real reason for it. I woke up Saturday morning and felt the need to make a small (5" by 7") mushroom painting. I like the idea behind the roots and cross section although I did not quite capture the roots that were in my head. So, there may be more roots in the future!

This painting is now in my Etsy shop for the very reasonable price of $25, so if you are into fungus....check it out! ;)

I am going to try to update this blog more regularly. I've almost been posting weekly but I would like to amp that up a bit. That also means I need to make more art so we will see if I am organized enough to find the time. Summer will be full of art and blog posts for sure but May and June get a little busy and stressful!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Spring Break

Ahhhhh, it feels so good to have one week off! I think everyone should get a week off in March. It gives you time to rest, catch up on things and get your taxes done! I have been doing all those things plus making as much art as possible!
On Monday I made some attainable goals to finish old projects but by Tuesday I found that I had started a handful of new projects. Being inspired is a great thing but unfinished art is piling up around me and some of it might not be completed till summer at this rate!
It's been awhile since I replenished the journals in my secondary Etsy shop, Das Buch so I collected some of my chipboard scraps and decided to do a series of cute little pocket sized books. Thus far I have completed one and I am hoping to get at least 2 more completed before my break is over.
This little journal has a hand painted cover (front and back) and is filled with blue and white paper (80 pages.) I used fancy gold paper for the spine which matches the gold beads on the ends of the braided rope that ties around the book. I stitched the journal together using waxed twine and a coptic stitch  that allows the book to open flat without damaging the binding. 
This book also contains my first attempt at paper marbling. Historically the end papers of books  contained marbled paper and I have been interested in the process ever since I watched an inspirational video on it. I bought an ink kit that does not require a carageenan mixture to make the pigment float. I simply floated the ink on the water and carefully placed my paper into the swirled mixture. The effect was pretty cool and I am going to experiment with different papers and colours. This journal has more handmade elements than some of my other books and I am really excited about how cute it is.
This little book is now listed in my Das Buch etsy shop along with my other creations!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Whalien

I have finally completed this odd painting and I am going to attempt to explain it a little. Before Christmas I was snooping through Sebastian's sketchbooks looking for something to turn into a gift for him. I came across this whale (I thought it was a fish...although upon further examination it is definitely a whale) which I have always liked but forgot about.
 I asked him what the story behind the fish was and he replied that it was a whale, floating in space...aka a Whalien! lol
I immediately started researching galaxy paintings and painting test galaxies for the background. I also started sketching it out in my sketchbook so he could add in the planets and other alien life. 

Progress on this painting was slow and tedious but only because I didn't want to make a mess and have to start over. I spent a weekend intermittently painting stars as white dots quickly get boring, but the overall effect is pretty cool. My sister was a fan of this painting from the initial sketch onwards and has since claimed it as her own! So I have 11" by 14" prints available on Etsy!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Sketchbook sketches

Dance competition season has arrived, ballet exams are done and June is closer than I think. I am tired and stressed but I get Sunday off and there is only one week left till spring break! 

This weeks art was sketchbook based. Last week I lingered too long in the art section at Michaels and ended up with a new small sketchbook. I didnt quite finish my last sketchbook of this size  but since it is held together with tape I managed to convince myself that I deserved a new one. I purchased a Strathmore drawing sketchbook (5.25" by 8") and even though it is meant for dry media it is holding up well with watercolour washes. I've been drawing some pretty random stuff lately...probably dealing with stress and body pain. I watch a lot of nature/animal documentaries ( I highly recommend David Attenborough's new series!!!) so some of those animals are starting to show up in my art.

My plan is that some of these concepts will become paintings or journal covers. If I do enough random drawings at least a couple are bound to be worthy of greater things!