Sunday, 11 January 2015

WANTED - 1 x Mojo, missing since November

Hello lovelies!

First full week back at work this week - this working thing really gets in the way of a) creating art, and b) getting my mojo on.  

I find that my mojo takes a while to get going.  Once it does I am fairly prolific, but it seems that mojo is wandering in the desert, and is yet to find its way to me here in Perth.

I know that it just takes time and space, but a missing mojo is no laughing matter.  To try and get the juices flowing, I have enrolled in Lifebook 2015 (you can find out more here).  Now, I hear you all saying, "But Liz you still haven't finished all the classes from Lifebook 2014 yet!"  Yes, this is true, but the knowledge that some arty videos and lessons are hitting my inbox every week may just call my mojo home.

So I spent some time last weekend actually creating something.  It was a struggle, particularly as I still haven't unpacked and completely organised my art supplies, so I can't just put my hands on what I want when I have the urge to use it.  In fact I can't even find my humungous store of washi tape - clearly I have put it somewhere "safe" - or perhaps its just gone to the same place that the "other sock" goes to after you have done a wash.  It's another of life's little mysteries.

As with previous years Tamara asks us to meditate on our mot de l'année (word of the year).  This was not a tough one for me, given the upheavals I experienced through 2014, I knew some time ago what 2015 needed to be about.  I've gone for a serve of "balanced & calm, with a twist of "measured" thrown in to ensure that I do not let my responses to situations ruin the balanced and calm.

So here is my little lifebook page, very simple techniques with a focus on colour:
I decided that I wanted to do a triadic colour combination so I went for yellow green with violet and blue.  It was a challenging triad to use, but I think I got the balance right.  The envelope on the page has some aspirations for 2015 inside it.  Not goals, aspirations - I don't want to be hard on myself if I don't achieve them, and I would be if they were goals.

So did you set a mot de l'année for 2015?

'till next time


Thursday, 1 January 2015

Emergence & Happy New Year!

Hello lovelies,

Well, first thing's first - HAPPY NEW YEAR! 

I must say that it is great to be looking forward to a new year settled in a new job and in a great little house.

As you have probably guessed, the last 2 months have been hectic to say the least - leaving Melbourne, travelling across the country, finding a house (and getting the internet turned on - blo*dy hell that was a traumatic experience), starting a new job then hosting family Christmas at my house.  Needless to say I collapsed in a heap on Boxing Day!

But the important thing is that I am finally settled in Western Australia, and have today started thinking about my art & doodling, and missing you all like crazy.

From a cursory look, there is not much in Perth in the way of mixed media (or even scrapbooking) shops and suppliers, so my online art life - and online art shopping - will have to become more active than ever.

As I am yet to produce any art in my new house, I thought that I would give you a virtual tour instead.  Most importantly I'll give you a peek at my new art room - that was the worst part of the unpacking, I am an art supplies hoarder!

So here we go:

I'm living in a suburb called Inglewood.  It's about 8 km's from the CBD so it's only a 20 minute bus trip to the office every morning.  The house is typical for the area - built around 1910, red brick with the all-important verandah to cool any breezes coming in the house.  Like many houses it has been extended at the back and the block subdivided - but there is enough garden to keep me happy.
This is a shot from the front door down the hall.  Behind me is the master bedroom, the door you can see to the right is the guest bedroom (very important when my interstate friends want to come and visit).  To the left is my art room, and the room you can see at the end is the original dining room, that I have converted into a large study & work area... working from home a day a week is an option for me. 

Here's the study - there is a huge fireplace to the right of the picture, stuffed with bits of art.
This is the extension at the back - a large living area, with the kitchen to the right.
Back up toward the front of the house, here's the art room.
It's a really large room, which it needs to be!!  The day bed ended up in here because there was just nowhere else for it to go, so as a result I have put my permanent working table under the porthole window (you can see that at the end of the verandah in the first pic).
Here's the other side of the room... whilst I love the mantelpiece, it is really large and sticks out a mile (they all do in this house - there are 3 of them), so my big grey metal cabinet and a bookshelf are against the wall to the right of the picture.
The fireplace isn't working, so it has become a place for box storage.  In fact the challenge with this house has been a total lack of cupboards - apparently cupboards or wardrobes were optional in 1910... I am now the queen of the flatpack: I've built a shed, 3 wardrobes, a linen cupboard and 3 sets of shelves in the last 6 weeks.  I'm refusing to get out my cordless drill for at least the next 6 months! 

So now I'm off to a movie with my parents (keeping them happy), and then I am going to pull out my art stuff and fondle it - even if I am just gessoing pages it will help to start my creative juices flowing a little. 

Here's to an arty and creative 2015 - its going to be a good one!!

'till next time


Sunday, 26 October 2014

Art Journal Pages - the 201 progression continues into transfers

Hello lovelies!

This is the final installment in my art journal 201 progression, as it was the final class in the series yesterday. 

The final class is about transfers.  I know, transfers can be tough, and I probably shouldn't be teaching these in an introductory art journaling program... but my logic is that I want my students to complete the 6 classes with a toolbox of techniques that will enable them to do anything they want on a page.   And transfers are an important part of being able to do that.

So we do 2 transfer techniques in class - tape transfers and gel transfers.  I pre-prepare skins for the students and discuss the technique, but we don't have enough drying time for skins to cure properly, so its a toughie to do in class.

Here's the transfers page from the first iteration of Art Journaling 201:

and here's the second. 
This page has a bit more collage than the previous, as I want to introduce the students to the concept of mixing their techniques.   Often I find that they will compartmentalise and have a page of "texture" and then a page of "transfers".  In Art Journaling 202 we start to explore the ideas of using multiple techniques on pages as well as mixing up our techniques and media.

So I will be a bit quiet on the blog for the next few weeks.  The packing men arrive early tomorrow morning (7.30 am), to move my house interstate, and I have to clean before my tenants move in.  I've got a day at the races Saturday, and then its off to Perth to house hunt in a week before starting my new job. 

'till next time


Friday, 24 October 2014


Hello lovelies,

Things around here are crazy, cray-cray, mad! It's 3 days until the moving company arrive to pack my house... and I am still frantically trying to get things done.

So you may remember the photo of my art studio whilst I was in the throes of filming my last art journaling 201 classes:
This is what it looks like now:

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Art Journal Pages - the 201 progression continues into Texture!

Hello lovelies!

Well its time for some more art journal progression. It's Class 5 - Texture.

I really love creating all kinds of texture in my art journaling. There is something soothing about a page you can feel as much as you can see it. I love taking my books and flip through them, sometimes just to feel the pages.

Actually, I even think, next to making the pages, the flipping through the books is the biggest perk of having an art journal. I made many paintings over the years and I usually create lots of texture in them. Don't get me wrong, I love making them, but when they are done, they are done. You hang them somewhere and that's it. 

Next to the tactile nature of art journals, I love that they are small, all different, open to experimentation and a great way to practice new techniques. I can just go in, do something when I feel inspired and move on when not. They are patient and there is no pressure. The beautiful thing is, I don't even have to like what I did. There are no mistakes in art journaling.

Here's the "extreme texture" page from the first iteration of Art Journaling 201:

and here's the second.  It's very similar, as this technique is always going to provide a fantastic finish.

Saturday, 11 October 2014

New art journal videos

Hello lovelies!

I have a little treat for you today.  A new series of videos demonstrating how I alter my journal.

This is a bonus lesson for my 201 students to help them when the need to learn how to thin out pages - primarily because the last lesson was on embedded "extreme" texture, and so nowmany of mystudents will have a journal that will no longer close properly.

The videos also include a full demonstration of preparing a page background, inserting transparencies and discussing how to add a fold.

All great techniques / know how for you to have in your toolbox!

You can find all my free videos on my vimeo channel here, or under the tutorials section of my blog here, or you can watch them by clicking on this post title and bringing up the whole blog post.

'till next time