Black & White

Week 36:  Black & White

photo credit:  Michael Bell

photo credit:  Michael Bell

My husband is slowly easing into retirement and he wanted a hobby so he picked up a camera and started messing around just for fun - but when he started showing me his photographs, I was amazed at how he looks at the world.  He's good.  Really good.

He shot this photo of me when I was sitting in a very boring admissions lecture at MIT with my nephew.  (No offense to anyone - I was just way out of my league so I zoned out!)  Instead of paying attention, I was doing what I normally do and pulled out my sketchbook to pass the time. Busted!  I had no idea he took the shot, but when he showed me this picture, he said, "this is how I see you.  Your hands have so much to say."  He told me he focused on my hands - the instruments I use to take care of everyone, the instruments I use to create, and to pray and to love and to hold on to what is dear to me. . . . deep sigh.

This is my husband:  (photo taken by my son, Christian).

So this week, simple and sweet, I used his photo as my inspiration!  He shot it with a monochromatic camera so it really is in black and white. 


I matted the photo with a tiny bit of black and used my stabilo aquarellable pencil and a water brush to draw random lines on the background.  I doodled some borders using black and white pens, then adhered some sticker letters on the page.  I treasure this picture - it's a gift to be able to see yourself through someone else's eyes.


I hope you enjoy the challenge, and as always, I cannot wait to see how you all interpret and create!


For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:

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Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

About Face

Welcome to Week 35 of The Documented Life Project! 

This week's challenge is to Draw, sketch, paint, doodle a face or cut and alter one from a book or magazine.

I fully intended to draw a serious, realistic portrait this week but I looked around my art table and saw this piece of watercolor paper I had been experimenting with.  Realistic . . . out the window!  This looks like candy or confections to me.  I toned it down a bit with a little white gesso and a dry brush but the luscious neon colors are still popping through.  A quick little sketch . . .

Then I added some yummy watercolor pencils, white gouache and acrylic paint, alternating to build up layers and definition.

I decided her hair looked like frosting on a cupcake, so I turned her dress into a cupcake paper!  She's popping up to say hello!

Hope you have fun with this challenge - don't be intimidated - faces are easy and fun!  Don't judge your work and don't compare yourselves to others!  Just create for YOU!


For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:

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Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

By the Numbers

Week 34: Fill the page with numbers that relate to your week

I'm so excited with this week's challenge - I got to pull out some awesome Cavallini vintage number stamps I have had for a while but seldom use.

I stamped my numbers, then used a craft knife and craft mat to cut out the top, bottom and right hand side of each number to create a little window.

I adhered the stamped paper to some watercolor paper and opened up each window.  I wrote each item that I accomplished behind the appropriate number such as, "3 days on the beach."  Next I doodled all over the page using my Tul pen and my white Signo Uniball.

The final touch was adding an awesome arrow stamp created by Pam Garrison.  Love this stamp set!

Hope you enjoy the challenge and can't wait to see how you all "count" your days!  Happy Documenting!


For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:

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Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

Down Under

Week 33:  Use Your UnderPaper in a Creative Way

What is "underpaper" you may say?  UnderPaper is what I put below my paintings, journals, and art work to catch all those delicious paint spills and over-spraying.  It's what I wipe my paintbrushes on, doodle all over, and scratch out ideas on.  It's meant to protect my work table, but usually it is so beautiful, I have to recycle it into something else! The hard part about this challenge was trying to pick just one little piece to work with!

I sorted through the piles and examined them closely, hoping something would jump out at me.  I settled on this piece:

And then I zeroed in on this:

Photo Aug 07, 11 11 25 PM.jpg

I did a super quick little sketch around what my eye saw in the UnderPaper and highlighted a few areas with watercolor and added a sticker for the title.

Photo Aug 07, 11 47 14 PM.jpg

Now if only I were sitting in that chair with a Margarita in my hand . . . sigh.

For more information on this week's challenge you can find us here:

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Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

Fortune Teller

Week 32:  Incorporate a fortune cookie fortune

Fortune's from fortune cookies!!!!  Well I have a few of those sitting around . . . you never know when you might need one!  Okay, I admit it . . . we order Chinese Take Out A LOT around this place and I keep a little jar in my studio stuffed with the fortunes from each meal.

I'm so glad I finally had a a use for these.  I decided to create my background from a bunch of fortunes by using a UHU glue stick to attach them.  I knew I wanted to sketch on top of them, so I spread a coat of clear gesso over the top and let it dry.  The clear gesso leaves a nice, gritty finish on top that is perfect for rough sketching.

Using my fave graphgear mechanical pencil, I sketched out a 'Lucky Cat' and a fortune cookie.

I painted my Lucky Cat using gouache and Caran D'Ache Neocolor II watersoluble crayons to make him pop off the page.  I pulled my pencil marks into the gouache to smudge and shade.

Lucky Cat looks a little grumpy . . . have to turn that frown upside down . . .

There!  All better now!  I hope you enjoy this week's challenge, as usual, I am excited to see how all of you interpret it!


For more inspiration, you can find us:

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Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

Pocket Full of Sunshine!

Week 31:  Add a pocket to your page - fill it with treasure from your week

The real challenge for me this week wasn't the pocket - it was what I put in the pocket.  My treasure this week was finally being OKAY with not doing perfect art!  Who defines perfect, anyway????    I just finished an online class by Mary Ann Moss called Sketchbookery.  She teaches you that it's okay to make mistakes and keep going.  It's okay for your ink or watercolor to blob.  DON'T rip the page out.  DON'T start over.  GO WITH IT!  She teaches that if you keep going, you will love the end result.  And she was right.  I love her work.  I love her personality.  And she has taught me to love my work - just the way it is.

 

I used my Montana Acrylic Markers and my dip pen with Liquitex Ink in Prussian Blue and created a tag for my pocket.  I love using ink and I want to practice and get much better.  Then I sewed a simple pocket using scrap wrapping paper - making a pocket "old school" scrapbooking style - folding one corner down inside.  I hinged it in my book and made a home for my tag I created - the one that freed me.  My treasure this week.  It's not perfect, but neither am I!

For more inspiration, you can find us:

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Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

Smash Style!

Week 30:  Add Receipts, Labels, Business Cards. . . Smash Style

I had fun all this week collecting and gathering items to "smash" into my planner, especially since I traveled to Baton Rouge, Louisiana and got to meet up with and spend the day in St. Francisville with my bestie, Kim - who I don't get to see nearly enough!  If you are ever near that area, it is worth spending an afternoon antiquing and browsing in all of the adorable shops and just walking through the historic district and chatting with the friendly folks who are ready to share a smile, a story and a sweet tea!  And don't forget to stop in at the Magnolia Cafe for a lovely lunch in an adorable setting!  I am sure you will see some sights from that little town appearing in my sketchbook soon!

Kimmie-Lou and Me! (Our daughters are BFFs too!)

Kimmie-Lou and Me! (Our daughters are BFFs too!)

Magnolia Cafe, St. Francisville, Louisiana

Magnolia Cafe, St. Francisville, Louisiana

I had so much stuff gathered by the end of the week, I knew I couldn't fit it all!  I was also in a hotel room with very limited supplies but at least I had my trusty traveling art kit!  You can see what I always carry with me HERE in this video!

I started by covering my blank page with an AT&T ad from the newspaper, which is pretty funny because by the time I was done, hardly any of it showed!  Then I started arranging and adhering bits and pieces from my week.  I didn't love all the white space, so I started adding paint, washi tape, a white Uniball Signo pen and my trusty Blackwing Pencil that I just can't live without!  Not much of this ended up showing either by the time I was done, but oh well, that's the nature of mixed-media and layering.  At least I know it's there!

I really wanted to document this one special day I got to spend with Kim, so I added a journaling card to the left side of my tip-in and I hinged it with this awesome, wide Hazel & Ruby Fat Roll tape - I happened to stuff it in my art bag at the last minute and it's amazing how well it worked with my collage!

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So there's my "smashed up" page - I will always smile when I look at it and remember my fun day with Kim and how much I treasure our time together!  We have been friends for over 25 years and because we live in separate cities, we make the most of every minute we have together! I'm glad I have this page to revisit when we can't be together! {I love you Kim!}

Photo Jul 18, 7 45 42 PM.jpg

For more inspiration, you can find us:

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Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

Up!

Week 29: Make a Wish List

This week's challenge was to make a wish list so I decided to make a list of all the places I still want to go in this world!  I'm blessed to be able to travel a lot, but there is so much more I want to see!  And since taking a hot-air balloon trip is at the top of that list, I decide to revolve all of my listmaking around the balloon !  (Incidentally, I don't want to go on just any old hot-air balloon trip, I want to take one up in the mountains of Cappadocia, Turkey - like this . . .

And this . . .

Ahhhh, one day!  Anyway, I sketched my balloon with a Micron pen and began to paint it with watercolors.

After painting, I started to write down all of the places I still wanted to go and specifically the experiences I wanted to have.  I wrote, and I wrote, and I wrote.

And I wrote some more.

I ran out of room.

So much to see, so little time . . . . . so there you have it, my "partial" wish list!


Looking forward to seeing your wishes this week!

For more inspiration, you can find us:

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Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

Art to the 5th Retreat!


We would love for you to join the Art to the 5th Artists at our first ever Art Retreat in conjunction with She Scrapbooks in The Villages, Florida!  Here's a little teaser video to tempt you further!


For more information and to find out how you can be a part of this incredible experience, call She Scrapbooks at (352)259-6226 or visit their website HERE.

Stencil Girl, Part Deux

True North

The past few years have been a struggle for me as I try to navigate my life in my new found role of Empty Nester.  I am no longer needed as the nurturer, homework-checker, limo driver, lunch-packer, chicken soup-maker, laundress . . . . and the list goes on.  No pity party here, I just wasn't prepared for the day when that last one went off to school and my job became "redundant!"  Where were the piles of laundry, the stacks of groceries, the houseful of teenagers that were always on my couch and in my fridge?

I really  miss them. I knew I would adjust, I knew it would be just fine and I also knew the little chicks would fly back home from time to time.  But what do I DO with myself now?  What's my role?  What's my job? How do I fill those hours each day that are no longer eaten up with the chores of "mothering?"

Like a ship floating aimlessly around the big wide ocean, I knew I had to find direction.  I had to find my TRUE NORTH.  So I set out on a new journey . . . immersing myself in my art and travel and charting a course to destinations unknown!

Of course, True North is a metaphor for setting myself straight, making my course, finding my direction.  And any time I veer off course, I just listen to my heart and find my way back to my True North!

To celebrate the search for my True North, I created this tag for the Stencil Girl Talk Blog this week.

I started with an old piece of map and a #12 manilla tag.  I use Golden Matte Gel Medium to adhere the map to the tag and trimmed it to fit.  I then placed the Around the World Latitude stencil designed by Mary C. Nasser over top of the tag.  I lightly pounced on Golden White Gesso, allowing the colors and lines of the map to peek through.

Once the gesso was dry, I used the Compass Rose stencil designed by Julie Snidle to add the directional emblem onto the tag with a black Staz-On Ink Pad.  I also stamped my sentiment on the card and hit them both with a heat gun to set them.  I brushed in a little watercolor wash to make the compass and letters stand out.

As a final touch, I tied on some hand-dyed ribbons and string and added a little travel tag.  I love the way it turned out and now when I find myself feeling lost, I just look up at my tag hanging above my desk and am reminded that I am on a journey . . . and I just have to keep heading True North!

Thanks for joining me as I lament my empty nest!  It has been an awesome week working with Stencil Girl! Please head over to their blog HERE and give them some love - they also have some wonderful discounts and giveaways all week!  Thanks to them for their support of The Documented Life Project and Art to the 5th!

Happy Travels!

Hugs,

Lo

Stencil Girl!

I'm so excited to be a featured artist on the  Stencil Girl Talk Blog today (along with Sandi Keene)!  I am such a fan of Stencil Girl stencils and it was great fun to create these projects!  Sincere appreciation to Mary Beth Shaw and Maria McGuire for their support of Art to the 5th and The Documented Life Project and including me in this special blog hop!


Chronicles of an Empty Nester

When I was asked to select my stencils for the Stencil Girl Blog Hop, the moment I saw these navigational designs, I knew exactly what I would use them for.  I have always been a journal keeper and a traveler and I have filled books full of sketches and writing about my experiences. I decided to make a new book to chronicle my empty nest journey in search of my True North. 

The two stencils I chose were the Around The World Latitude Stencil and the Compass Rose Stencil. 

I decide to create my journal using a Tim Holtz Chronicle Large Worn Cover by Idea-ology and some very cool old world map tissue paper.  I crinkled the tissue and used gel medium to adhere it to the book cover.

Using the Compass Rose stencil, I spread Golden molding paste on the stencil with a palette knife so it would ooze through the holes and leave a raised image.  I love the way it looks and the stencils are such great quality that every tiny little space held up well with the molding paste.

Once the molding paste was dry, I followed the basic circular shape on the original book cover and roughed in a decorative border around the compass.  Then I rubbed ink over the raised surface of the stencil image and stamped and cut out some letters for my title.

For the inside covers of the journal, I rubbed Tim Holtz Distress Stain (Rusty Hinge) on a piece of watercolor paper with a baby wipe for a base color.  Next I placed the Around The World Latitude stencil over the paper and spritzed with Adirondack Color Wash Spray Inks (Stream and Lettuce).  The stencil left a faint outline of the latitude lines which I loved!  To make those lines pop even more, I laid the stencil back over top of the original lines and sprayed the paper again, this time using Dylusions Ink Spray (White Linen).  I lifted the stencil and dabbed at it while it was still wet.  I love the effect!

Photo Jul 02, 12 41 03 AM.jpg

I added a very cool 3-Ring Binder by Advantus through some punched holes.  Now the book looks professional and finished on the inside . . . just ready for some paper!

In keeping with the old world style of the journal, I cut some vintage ledger paper I had on hand and punched holes and spritzed them with Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist (Coffee Shop and Suede) using the Latitude stencils as a mask.  I placed them in the journal and added a travel tag.  I'm going to love writing in this book!

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To finish the book off, I doodled alternating a white Uni-Ball Signo and a black Pilot Multiball pen and coated each stamped letter with Glossy Accents to make them look like tiles.  A pretty little bow of tulle and twine was tied around the spine of the book and finished off with a little travel trinket.


I hope you enjoyed the post today!  Stop in again tomorrow where I will demonstrate another True North project using Stencil Girl products!  Be sure to visit The Stencil Girl Talk Blog and share some love and don't forget to visit their products site HERE to see what other awesome stencils they have!  They are having a fantastic giveaway and discounts this week so be sure to take advantage of it!

Hugs, Lo

 

It's DLP Week at Stencil Girl!

GUESS WHAT? It's DLP Week over at Stencil Girl!  The Art to the 5th Girls will be featured all week on their blog (as well as Mary Beth Shaw and Andrew Borloz) demonstrating what they have created using Stencil Girl's phenomenal stencils.  We will keep you hopping back and forth all week as we take turns creating, so be sure to visit all of the sites often this week.  Oh and did I tell you? Stencil Girl is offering DISCOUNTS and GIVEAWAYS all week so be sure to stop by and comment everywhere!  Have fun and we can't wait to share!

Just Picture It . . .

Week 28 - Add an Instagram or other tiny photo to your planner


For this week's challenge, I used one of my favorite photos . . .

This picture speaks volumes to me and there are no words to put it down on paper.   I kept the page and background very plain with just a few collaged elements and a simple stamp to make a statement.

Photo Jul 02, 9 19 05 PM.jpg

Wonderful memories of friends and food and sun and sand.  Oh yes, and dreams being fulfilled!


Looking forward to seeing your tiny photos this week!

For more inspiration, you can find us:

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Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram

NEW CLASSES AT SHE SCRAPBOOKS!


I'm so excited once again to be teaching at She Scrapbooks in The Villages, Lady Lake, Florida!  I just love Stephanie and Yvonne and the lovely ladies who frequent their shop - there's always a good time to be had at She Scrapbooks!

On Saturday, July 26th, I will be teaching two Mixed-Media workshops and I would love to have you join me!  Hop on over to the She Scrapbooks Website for all the details!


Canvas Art Journal Cover

Canvas Art Journal Cover

PICTURE THIS! Instagram Album

PICTURE THIS! Instagram Album



She Scrapbooks

918 Bichara Boulevard, The Villages, Florida

32159 352-259-6226

I hope I will see you there!

Create It•Mail It•Alter It

Announcing a Brand New Online Course from Art to the 5th!


Paint, doodle and stamp “art with an address”. Enjoy this creative New Twist on a Mail Art class with your instructors: Rae Missigman, Roben-Marie Smith, Lorraine Bell and Sandi Keene.

We will each demonstrate our step by step process for creating layered, detailed designs in our signature styles. Watch as we trade pieces via mail to reveal the process of using mail art to construct elements for your planner or art journal.

This is TWO classes in ONE with 17 videos, over 6 hours of instruction, technique and inspiration from 4 distinct points of view. Let us inspire you with ways to create a mailbox treasure sure to delight your recipient PLUS how to turn the mail art you receive into meaningful additions to your favorite project. You supply the postage, we will cover the fun!

Join us as we Create It • Mail It • Alter It!

Hop on over to the Art to the 5th Academy Classroom to register!

Games People Play

Week 27:  Use a crossword puzzle, soduku, or word game

Guilty.  I admit it.  I am a "Words with Friends" addict.  And I'm competitive too.  Just ask my family - I'm ruthless at word games - I'm not proud of it!  For this week's challenge I decided to make myself a teeny tiny little 'Words with Friends' game board and letters.  Too, too cute!

I gridded out my game board and drew the lines with a Tombow marker and then ran a waterbrush down the lines to blur them a bit.  I made lots of "Triple and Double" letter and word spaces.  Then I stamped some tiny alpha stamps onto watercolor paper that I painted a golden yellow.  Each letter block is only 2/8" square!  I cut them out and inked the edges with black ink.

I attached a little glassine envelope to the bottom of the page to hold all of my game pieces.  Aren't they adorable?

Now I have a sweet little game in my planner.  Originally, I thought I might make it functional, but in the end I decided to go more artistic so I glued down "Life" and "Document."  I love the way it turned out!

I'm super excited to see how you use a puzzle or word game in your planner this week. 

For more inspiration, you can find us:

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Instagram: #documentedlife #documentedlifeproject

Looking for previous challenges? click HERE

 

Visit our blogs: Sandi Keene, Roben-Marie Smith, Rae Missigman and Barbara Moore on Instagram