FOCUS

March Theme
Making Your Mark (Doodles & Mark Making)
March 21 - Week 12
Art Challenge:  As a Focal Point
Journal Prompt:  Coming Into Focus


Hey Everyone and welcome to Week 12!  I am so excited about this week because our featured artist is Danny Gregory - an artist that I greatly admire and who has been indirectly instrumental in my own art journey.  I started reading Danny's blog years ago and was thrilled last year when he and fellow artist, Koosje Koene developed "Sketchbook Skool," an online klassroom for sketchbook artists.  I spend a lot of time in their klassroom and have learned from so many wonderful and interesting artists.  Sketching is probably one of my favorite pastimes and I love keeping detailed art journals of my travels.  In honor of Sketchbook Artists everywhere, I decided to put myself out there and do a sketch for this week's challenge.  In his classes, Danny encourages you to start with a PEN - not a pencil - YIKES!  But the good thing about using a pen is that it forces you to ignore {or embrace} imperfections in your artwork!  You can't erase, so you have no choice but to keep going.  Sketching this way has helped me to draw faster and looser. I am always "on the fly" when I'm trying to document things in my travel journals and I have no time to erase things and do the over.

So to begin the challenge, I took a deep breath . . . and drew the outline of my camera.  Aaack!  See the wonky lines in my lens? My brain was telling me, "you suck - that is all wrong," but my heart was telling me to keep going - don't worry about those funky shapes and the weird perspective.  So I kept pushing.  I added some cross-hatching to define my darker values. . .

Okay - well at least it resembles a camera . . . my brain was starting to calm down a bit at this point.  There was no going back.  It's in PEN!

Adding watercolor made this camera come to life - {be quiet brain - it DOES look like a camera}.  The stressful moments passed and then I got comfortable with my sketch. Dare I say I actually liked it?  And because I am in love with my camera strap, I decide to add that on too . . .

A few well-placed stamped letters are now a reminder to me to stay "focused" and not to listen to the negative voices inside my head.  I loved this challenge and I am looking forward to seeing how you all approach it - be sure to stop by Danny Gregory's blog to see what he has in store for us - I know you will be inspired!


supplies used this week


For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:
Flickr
Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman

Join us on The Art to the 5th™ Academy™ - a thriving "community" and classroom for "The Original" Documented Life Project™!  Find us on Instagram: #documentedlife

Borderline

March Theme
Making Your Mark (Doodles & Mark Making)
March 14 - Week 11
Art Challenge:  Borders
Journal Prompt:  "Borderline feels like I'm going to lose my mind"


One of the many things I love about the March Theme (Doodles) is that it just makes me want to play and have fun - even the word "doodles" sounds happy to me.

For this week's challenge, I wanted to choose colors I don't normally work with so I started by painting the entire spread with Burnt Umber Acrylic Paint with a wide, flat brush.

Once the burnt umber dried, I used titanium white acrylic paint to loosely brush flower shapes on the background. Don't over think this step - brush once and leave it alone.

You might notice the bulldog clip in the picture.  The pages curled up when I painted them with the burnt umber, so the clip was useful in holding the page open - I use these all the time in my art journals, especially if I am painting outside so the pages will stay in place and won't blow.

Before the white paint dried, I used the Naples Yellow Deep paint to loosely brush over the flowers. I applied the paint thickly to get some texture.

I continued to layer the white and Naples Yellow paint making swirls and petal shapes - still not over thinking or over working the process - it is just supposed to be a "suggestion" of a flower.

I used turquoise and green-yellow acrylic to loosely paint leaf shapes around the blooms.

Next came the doodling!  I used my white pen to quickly outline elements on the page, then made dots in the background and swirly lines to create my border.  In the picture below you can really see the ridges left by the thick application and build up of acrylic paint.

I added turquoise paint on the border to make the whole painting more cohesive.  This was a super fun, quick page and I love that I can doodle mindlessly and not have to think about it too much.

I can't wait to see how you all make your marks this week!  Don't forget to check out our Featured Artist this week - the fabulous Jen Osborn! 


The products I used this week are listed below!


For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:
Flickr
Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman


Join us on The Art to the 5th™ Academy™ - a thriving "community" and classroom for "The Original" Documented Life Project™!  Find us on Instagram: #documentedlife

Surviving the Elements

March Theme
Making Your Mark (Doodles & Mark Making)
February 14 - Week 10
Art Challenge:  As a Layer Element
Journal Prompt:  Surviving the Elements

Sometimes my art journal pages are a place to process what is going on in my life.  There are occasions where my pages are serious and pensive and sometimes I just like to PLAY!  This week, I PLAYED! 

Reading the prompt, the only thing that kept popping into my mind was the Periodic Chart of Elements.  I kept thinking of chemistry, charts, and graphs.  I just purchased a new set of Derwent Inktense pencils and really wanted to see how each color looked so I decided to make a periodic chart using swatches of color from the pencils.

In keeping with the Chemistry theme (elements) I pulled out an old notebook I found in an antique store:

This notebook is amazing.  It's dated September 17, 1915 and every page is full of equations, chemical formulations and lab reports.  I hated to tear the pages out but knew they would enhance the design I had in mind.  I used Dina Wakley's Gel Medium to apply the notebook pages to my Art Journal. My son saw the page and said, "Oh, you're doing a challenge on Stochiometry!"  Ummmm, no - I have no idea what that means - haha!

There are 72 colors in the box of pencils so I doodled 72 boxes.  Just for fun, I arranged them to look like a periodic chart. Because our theme this month involves mark-making and doodling, I did not measure and I casually drew each square with rounded corners using my Tul Fine Marker.  It's waterproof and writes over top of the gel medium with ease.

Using the Inktense pencils, I colored in one half of each block, then brushed them with water using my Niji water brush.  I did this quickly and did not blend the color and water so that I would get variations within each block.

When the color was dry, I began the task of writing each color number and name on the associated block.  I gave them each an "initial" to identify them, just as you would see in a periodic chart.  Kind of cool looking, don't you think?  I also began doodling around and in each block, just for fun.  To add some interest and depth, I drew a line on the left side and bottom of each block with a Kuretake Zig Twin Tip Art Marker in Warm Grey and then brushed each line with water to blend.  It added a dropped shadow around each block to make them look as if they are sitting on top of the page.

I labeled the page then wrote some words around the edge of the page for a border.  And there you have it . . . a playful, quirky page - just for fun!  I am looking forward to seeing your mark-making this week!  And don't forget to visit the Art to the 5th blog to see our featured artist this week, the fabulous Robin Mead!


Supplies Used For This Week's Challenge:


For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:
Flickr
Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman


Join us on The Art to the 5th™ Academy™ - a thriving "community" and classroom for "The Original" Documented Life Project™!  Find us on Instagram: #documentedlife


You can learn how all of the Art to the 5th Artists have created their Journal Covers in our new class entitled, "Cover Story."  You can find it HERE.

Somerset!

I don't know about you all, but Somerset Studio and the Stampington family magazines are among my favorites when it comes to inspiration and creativity.  I subscribe to all of their delicious publications and when they land in my mailbox, I set them aside to read when I have the time to relax and devour every word and picture.

One of the best parts is flipping through and finding articles about artists that I personally know!  You can imagine my surprise when I opened up this latest issue and found my own artwork! Somerset did send me a complimentary issue with a letter telling me I had been published - but I didn't see it until after I already opened my own subscription.  I'm glad it happened that way . . . glad I got that giddy feeling when I flipped the page over and saw my name and my canvas art.  It was like, well, it was SERENDIPITY!

If you haven't gotten your copy yet - go get one - It's a beautiful issue - and I'm not just saying that!

Hey Soul Sister

February Theme
Layers You Will Love!
February 14 - Week 9
Art Challenge:  Using at least five layers
Journal Prompt:  Give Me a High Five

For this week's challenge, I really played and had fun and definitely didn't take myself too seriously!  To approach the prompt of "high five,"  I decided to use FIVE manilla tags and layer them in my journal.  I used five sizes; largest to smallest, and attached them end to end with 1" masking tape front and back accordian style.  Masking tape takes paint well and after several layers, you don't even notice it.  I painted the tags and pages of the journal with white gesso to give me a uniform surface to paint on.

I still didn't have an idea of what I wanted to paint on my tags - no inspiration whatsoever!  Whenever that happens to me, I just begin painting backgrounds and textures until something comes to me.  I used a stabilo pencil to scribble around the edges of the tags and blend the black marks with water to "grunge them up" a bit.

Photo Feb 21, 2 19 44 PM.jpg
Photo Feb 21, 2 21 59 PM.jpg

Still no idea . . . so I pulled out my sweet little mini distress ink blocks, some applicators and dabbed the ink onto a teflon mat and spritzed them with water.  I blended the inks together and started to layer color on all of the tags.  STILL no idea as to what I was going to do with the tags!

I decided to start drawing some whimsical faces and characters on the tags . . . just fun figures that are all inspired by people I know in my life . . .

These silly girls started to appear on the page.  I just started laying down acrylic paint and shapes and I realized these are my people--my tribe--my soul sisters!

I loved the colors - it reminded me of a carnival!  Once all of the tags were dry, I pulled out my Inktense Pencils, gold gesso, Montana Acrylic markers and my black and white Signo pens - I got a little carried away, but I just couldn't stop as each "friend" emerged!

Here's a little close up of each "soul sister."

I love the way the journal page looks when it is unfolded and flipped over.  I just used a cute little paperclip at the bottom to hold it all together when the journal is closed.

I hope you enjoyed the challenge this week - I can't wait to see all of your beautiful art journals!  Be sure to stop by the Art to the 5th Blog to see our special Featured Artist this week - Kristin Petersen!




For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:
Flickr
Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman


Join us on The Art to the 5th™ Academy™ - a thriving "community" and classroom for "The Original" Documented Life Project™!  Find us on Instagram: #documentedlife


You can learn how all of the Art to the 5th Artists have created their Journal Covers in our new class entitled, "Cover Story."  You can find it HERE.