Saturday, April 18, 2015

Journal Prompt 16: What Would you Like to Do?

5 x 8" journal page

The prompt this week was to pick something you have always wanted to do but haven't gotten around to yet.  
My friend Cynthia mentioned recently her love of Line Dancing and immediately I wanted to learn too!

It'll have to wait to fall when I return to fulfill this wish.
The dancers are a line drawing off Google images that I ink jet printed, then did an acrylic skin, attached with acrylic mat medium and when dry retraced with an apprentice black permanent pen.  The letters are foam letters from Dollar General!  The background is a Gelli print with lots of lines (get it lines dancing?) made with an oiler boiler and permanent black ink.  

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Ipad Zentangle

Today I had a little time to play around with my new app called "You Doodle". 

Despite the fact that I am not too thrilled with the word "doodle" and am ignoring that and trying out different kinds of tangles using it.  

I entitle the first one on top "Line Dancing" which is one of the topics I plan to discuss in my Journal Prompt this week.  I am asked to think of something I'd like to learn.  Friend Cynthia likes to line dance.  That sounds really fun.  Next fall I may join her.

One of the fun parts of You Doodle is that what ever you fill in or add in the doodle the colorful pattern will continue on in the part you expose.  Very cool. These were made using a stylus.  I do have the "enhanced" version as it was on sale for only $2.99.  I can hardly wait to play more with it.  It will fun for traveling.

I printed these out on paper (sent from my iPad). 
I also printed out a few small versions to glue in my tangle a day calendar!  Also very cool.   

So far I haven't figured out how to shade on the tablet but once printed out, I can shade AND add enhancements to my heart's content.  Are we having fun yet!?  

Monday, April 13, 2015

Not your everyday boring yellow mailing envelope!

One of the joys of multi media is that it can go just about anywhere and on most anything.  

This is a 11 x 14 mailing envelope.
I am recycling it.
A perfectly good (but very boring) yellow envelope.

On the front to camouflage the previous label, I have Gelli printed, stenciled, stamped with hand-made stamps, drawn and sprayed with paint.  Most of the paint is permanent but a few of the paints are water based.  So I will take it outside and give it a few coats of acrylic clear spray to make it all permanent before it goes to the post office! 

With most of the stencils I like using a foam brayer and acrylic paint.  I think when this is possible, it far outweighs using foam stampers.  And it goes very fast and the foam brayers wash out beautifully and can be used over and over.  

The "calligraphy" is mine and is original..done in 05 and 02 micron pigma pens.  Based on an idea in a recent video by Andrea Joseph where she uses a kind of "contour script".  It is a little harder actually than it looks.  I did it 5 times before I got that one and it still needs polishing.  (She has a great blog by the way). 

This technique is especially nice when sending a gift rather than actually gift wrapping it.  It can sit with other gifts and look pretty "outstanding".  Hahaha.  

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Fanz: Diva's Challenge this week.

I think I've had "Fanz" in my collection but I can't remember ever using it!  That's what I love about the Diva's Challenge.
Ya just never know until you try it!

Also been playing around with "auras" as an enhancement.  Linda Farmer sent around a list of some of her favorite "stuff" and Maria's ideas about different kinds of auras was one I had not seen before.  Shucks, just adding lines is only ONE way to do an aura!  She did auras in all kinds of ways!
Who would of thought?

Have a good week everyone.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Nice to be honored

I was honored today (along with many other teachers) for my contributions toward teaching Zentangle this year at our park here in FL.  

We had a great pot luck lunch which was very well attended.  

(It is so weird to see myself without glasses!)

Zentangle Calendar

Well, I was up to date a few hours ago.. Hahaha.
Keeping a daily calendar sure reminds you of how time flies.

Wonderful warm days here in central FL but that mess of weather causing all kinds of issues in the midwest will push down this weekend and unload rain on us big time.  We need the rain but am not happy it will arrive just when my company also arrives!  Where do I complain!?

Today our Art Group here in our park will conclude it's activities with a big pot luck lunch at 11 am all designed to thank the teachers who have been working so long and hard (for free) all season long!  
We have so many wonderful volunteers!  You can take classes here in oil, acrylic, pastel, colored pencil, clay, china painting, pen and ink and watercolor in our art room! All for free!  (you buy your own supplies).  It's a big selling point here in our park.  We have over 100 clubs with everything from Woodburning to Line Dancing, Fishing to Orchestra, Bingo to lapidary.  You name it.  We got it.  Or we will get it.  Hawthorne Park in Leesburg (look it up). 

Some of our classes will continue on informally over the summer.  Probably 50% of the homeowners here stay all year.  The rest of us toddle up north to cooler spots for the summer and return in the fall.  

Have a good weekend everyone!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

En Plein Air

3" x 13" WC on Arches cold press

Beautiful day to be outside.
I met with some friends this morning to en plein air paint…we started about 8:30 a.m. in hopes of avoiding the heat of the day.  We are getting close to 90 most afternoons here in central FL now.  

My next door neighbor's hubby is a fantastic gardener and there is so much around you to paint it hard to decide.  Barb Sailor recently did Stargazer lilies and my neighbor's wife, Katie, loves hers so I decided to make them the center of interest in the tiny painting.  I used a little "Opera" to bring out the bright color!  It's not signed yet…a see a few little possible tweaks to it..a little brighter yellow on the one plant in the orange pot.  If you look REALLY close you will see a little ceramic frog sitting among the plants.  

I have a mat and frame the exact size of this painting which is why I chose this size.  

The background is "imagined" as the plants actually ringed their porch.  

Another neighbor dropped by at noon with warm chocolate chip cookies and icey lemonade.  How spoiled are we!!!  There were two other artist painting with me this morning.  We had fun chit chatting as we worked.  One worked in watercolor pens and one in colored pencil.  

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Journal Prompt #15

5 x 8" journal page with booklet closed

Same journal page with booklet open

The prompt for week 15 was really complicated with a lot of different options on how to complete it.  Basically it re-visited our first "word" that we chose at the beginning of the journal in January.  My word was "Attentiveness" and to pick another word from the word list generated by other journal writers to match up to yours.  I picked "mindful".  

Then to take the two words and find tangles that start with the beginning letters (in my case M and A).  I chose Aurukas and Merryweather.  Then tangle a tile with those two.  Finally jot down some feelings about the progress you have or have not made with staying with this first chosen word.  

There's not a lot of room on a 5 x 8 journal page and I am not doing two page spreads too often.  So I decided to add a little "booklet" to give me a little more space.  

Materials used are stencils, acrylic paint and ink, Sharpie paint pens, Micron pen, YES glue, specialty cutting scissors with a ragged edge, darning needle and twine, small metal clasp, die cut letters from the Dollar Store, and a hand made stamp.

I think I am one of the few of the 150 or so journal folks in this prompt group who is actually keeping up with the week by week prompts.  A lot of people are doing really fantastic art work that I love to look at but that takes them weeks behind in the project.  We all have lives…and other art.  It's my take that you can't spend two days on a prompt.  

Monday, April 6, 2015

Print of Stained Glass

8.5 x 10.5 print

Guess what arrived today?

When your name gets picked in an online drawing it's always kind of neat.  Zentangle's newsletter now and then has a drawing for a print of something special.  I fell in love with the new Zentangle stained glass window at the Providence headquarters.  It was designed especially by Rick and Maria on the 10th anniversary of Zentangle.  

The glass artist is Stephen Paulson.  It is installed above a door way.  There are tangles in the 4 corners and the "angel" has butterfly wings and is holding "the book of Zentangle".The little bee in the left corner is a symbol for Rick as he is a beekeeper.  The feather is for Maria as she is a calligrapher.  It's a beautiful little print and worth of framing for my studio.  Very fun.  Thank you Rick and Maria.  

Tangle a Day calendar April 4-6

I had SUCH a good time doing this calendar page!
I was obviously inspired by Carole Ohl's marvelous work on previous pages but I only had to stop because I ran out of white paper!  

Also enjoyed the new tangle "Loop" which I 
tangelated with Crescent Moon around it.  Such a nice easy and pleasant looking tangle!  

Update on cataract surgery: Everything is going very well. Thanks for all the prayers and good thoughts.  I see the surgeon again on Thursday for another check up and then it'll be about 2 more weeks and I'll get my prescription for reading/computer glasses.  I am not wearing glasses for TV or driving…just up close work.  I still have quite a few "drops" to take in both eyes…for another two weeks.  But I'll be back at the pool by Wednesday!  Temps in central FL are close to 90 most days now.  

All us former Wisconsin-ites are pretty delirious right now over basketball!  Tonight is the night!  Can we do it?  Whatever happens it's amazing that we got this far!  So go Wisconsin AGAIN!  

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Journal Prompt #14

5 x 8" page in journal

Our week 14 journal prompt was to describe how it feels to be a "fool for love".  Whatever love you choose.  It was suggested to use a circular shape and "valentine" colors but that was optional.  

I think being a grandparent is the most adoring love I can think of.  Next to my mate and my children they are THE most beloved people on earth to me.  (Well, my sister sort of sneaks in there somewhere too).  

There are 12 hearts with the names of each of my grandchildren (all above average of course). I think it came out sort of looking like a bracelet.  I used stencils, paint, ink, stamping, tangled hearts and glue.  I threw in some glitter and confetti stars.  It is a "happy page" and fun to make as a prelude to Easter.  

The words in the center came from Pat or Mike when they were about 6 or 7.  It's hard to throw anything away from the little ones!  

And by the way "GO WISCONSIN!"

Friday, April 3, 2015

Zentangle calendar in April

Lacee is a brand new tangle and it seems to me to hold many creative possibilities in it.  Crescent Moon is old tangle and this version is based on a Helen Williams tangelation of it.

You'll note on my side bar that my Zentangle and other art classes are all "up north" now for summer.  I am "winding down" here in FL.  April is hot…you have to take it easy…we'll be in the 90's most of next week…everything slows down in pace now.  

Easter Sunday looks lovely in mid-80's and then hot hot hot follows that.  I have set up an en plein air event for the park art group next Wed but we'll have to start early and in the shade. 

My 2nd cataract surgery was last Wed and it went well.  There is always some discomfort and swelling for a few days and a sort of "gritty" feeling like you have something in your eye!  
But I know now that this will only last a short time and get better each day.  One more post op exam on Thursday of next week and then I'll be waiting to the end of the month for my exam for reading glasses.  Like most folks, I'll probably still need glasses for art, reading and computer.  Thank you to all the blogger friends who have been rooting for me and my recovery!

After Easter I look forward to a nice long visit from my sister and brother in law (from SC) and following that a 3-day wc and collage class with Gerald Brommer up in The Villages.  You will hear all about that!!!   

Today I hope to have a little messing around time to work on the Week 14 Journal prompt and I think we'll have lunch out on the adirondack chairs in the yard this noon.  (Me with sun glasses, of course).  

Have a blessed Easter everyone.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Zentangle on Sunday

Auraknot has always been a "mac 'n cheese" tangle for me.  Loved it from the first time it I got it to work.  :-)

I've never done it on a Renaissance Tile before and I sort of like that effect too.

It was nice to see Rick and Marie's versions of Flux.
I have always liked that one.  Come to find out I have been mis-naming another tile Flux also…when I think it is really "Corner Box" or something else entirely.  
Need to look that up.  

Also turns out that I have won something in a drawing on  Good thing I checked in on that today and found my name!  It has something to do with the beautiful new stained glass window that has been installed at the zentangle headquarters in Providence.  I'll let you know when the secret surprise arrives!  

Tomorrow is my hubby's big day as the local in-house TV station at our park is featuring his model train lay (along with 3 others).  The taping is tomorrow morning!  Lots of preparation going there!!!  So I'll spend the afternoon prepping for my Tuesday Zentangle class.  It will be my last Zentangle class of the FLorida season (I think).  April is just too busy to try to fit anything more in.  

I am taking a 3-day Gerald Brommer wc and collage workshop up in The Villages April 20-22, have guests, AND am having my final cataract surgery this Wednesday.  That means a lot of follow up doctor visits and finally getting some new glasses toward the end of the month.  

Friday, March 27, 2015

Diva's Challenge: A spiral

Balo and Brabs on a Renaissance Tile.
I have one more Renaissance class coming up on Tuesday so I thought I'd give the Diva's challenge a try on a honey colored tile.

Stencil ideas

I think this is the 3rd time I've posted today. Yikes.
That's a record for me!!!
I've sort of been sweeping up some odds and ends of things and finishing up Zentangle calendars and doing a journal prompt and now I've switched to organizing stencils.

I had my stencils out for something in my journal recently.
And I remembered I had seen a video on YouTube recently about "reinforcing" the edges of stencils using back to back duct tape.  I have several packages of very small stencils that I got at Michaels or WalMart or some place like that because I really liked the patterns (even though very small).  And I like the price.  Have you noticed how expensive stencils ARE????

Anyway…I took two, a heart shaped and a zig-zag one and I taped the edges.  You can see the black paper showing through those two stencils above.  Now instead of being 3.5" x 4.5" they are about 7" x 7.5". Quite a difference and lots of edge to hold on to when you are using them!!! 

Then I rolled out some Liquitex Basic acrylic paint in gold and using a "foam" roller I roll-printed over the stencil.  Foam rollers are my NEW favorite way to use stencils.  A big Tracy Batista tip!  This stamping with foam make up sponges or padded little foam stampers is for the birds.  The sponge rollers work so smoothly and print so well and are so easy to wash out afterwards!!!!

You can find these small sponge rollers in the hardware stores or Walmart stores or Dollar Stores.  They run under $5 and often come with an extra sponge.  Perfect for painting with Yupo paper as well by the way.  Another story.

I also practiced with the zig-zag stencil, continuing on with it to make a large print.  By matching up the design of the 
stencil and "continuing" on with the print making you can make a LARGE print of the stencil without actually having a large stencil!  Voila. 

I was stenciling over some watercolor patterns, by the way, that made last spring and have not used yet.  I laid crumpled Saran wrap on the wet watercolor and let it dry that way.  I am sure you have done that at one time or another yourself!  That's the pattern on the far right at the bottom under the gold zig-zag.  

Because this is watercolor underneath, I would lightly spray this whole thing with an acrylic clear mat spray (outside) to set it and make it waterproof OR you can roll out the mat medium thinly on your Gelli plate and print the paper onto that surface and when it is dry it is permanent!  (That is also the way to make ink jet photos and printing permanent as well, by the way.)  Especially if I plan to add anything else on top!  

My other favorite way to use stencils is with a spray.  But I don't have very many of those…one black and one white and they are both water soluble.  So, like wc above, they would have to be made permanent before adding anything else. 

Okay…we are having company later today and so I need to get this studio a little straightened up!!!  I keep getting distracted!!!  WE expect some rain later this afternoon but I hope that it shifts off quickly.   

Tangle A Day Calendar updates

Felt good to get "close" to catching up on the ole "Tangle a Day" calendar last night.  Hey, if I can get one done today…voila!  

I am enjoying the new tangle "Keystone".  It reminds me of another one but I can't remember which one.  Binial and Caviar I've had in my Evernote app on my iPad for a long time but forget to use them.  I love the variation on Coaster with the daisy petals.  It's a "mac and cheese" tangle for me although the dark fill takes quite a long time to do.  It makes it dramatic.

I am enjoying a gorgeous dawn here in central FL (high 78 today) which is like perfect.  BUT we have maybe 50% change of rain later today.  Tropical.  The important thing is no rain Sat because our park is having it's HUGE once a year rummage sale tomorrow and it's open to the public.  Last year we made $16,000 on it in just 5 hours.  AMAZING.  And stuff is selling for rummage sale prices too.  It's not to miss.

There's a Land That I Heard of Once in a Lullaby…Journal prompt #13

5 x 8" journal page

Share your best "dreams" or your best "dream day".  So many things went through my mind…how would I spend my dream day and what would I do.  What would make me happiest.  Who would I choose to be with?  I found this prompt almost impossible to sort through.  SO so many things make me happy.  

I am probably happiest when I am making art…drawing, painting, journaling, sketching, printing, creating…etc.  I tend to do this in a solitary way…but having said that one of the reasons that I can be so creative is that I am loved enough to be myself.
Does that make sense?  Something to do with "centering".  

So when I set out to visualize that small center of my soul where dreams and creative begin…it became very complicated to pull out any one single thing…instead it all became very "dream-like" with ideas and happy thoughts swirling about.  Thus my journal page for this week reflects that.  All the while I found myself humming "Over the Rainbow"…"there's a land that I heard of"…."to a place behind the sun, just a step beyond the rain"…"once in a lullaby".  

The materials that came to my fingers yesterday were an acrylic skin that I made (ala Tracy Batista)..most of the swirly blues were made on a plastic sheet projector and then pulled off and glued on my page.  Then swirls of lovely lines in black tied the dreams together…dimensional paint…Slicks.  Gel pens slipped in and added patterns in white and rose and yellow.  And "nonsense" printing slipped in with a dip pen in Black Cat india ink.  

So it's a very personal representation of a happy dream like presence.  Somewhere "over the rainbow".  

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Fun way to use Gelli print scraps

Scrap pieces of Gelli print paper on deli paper and other papers make darling little paper beads.  I used heavy gel medium as the glue and put a little coat of it over the bead to help make it a little stronger and sturdier.  

I had some pretty little turquoise beads left over from another project and so I interspersed them into the necklace.  
The suggestion I saw on line was to string this on elastic…I think that might be a fun thing to do.  I'll try to find some.
Also the instructions suggested wearing 3-4 strands together each slightly different length.  That looks really nice.  

It's a little messy but it doesn't take long to do and the dry in a few hours!  Voila.  Ready for Easter!  :-)

By the way…I aced my post op cataract exam this morning.  My right eye is almost 20/20 now.  After completely failing the exam before surgery!  I am so happy!  
Left eye is April 1.  Hold that thought!  

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Art Class at DK Art Supply in Leesburg, FL

Zentangle 101 Part II: Renaissance Tiles

Great group of 10 folks who did a wonderful job on their tiles and tangles.  I am going to sign up to teach Christmas tangles in November when I return in the fall.  

One more class to teach at Legacy Park next week.
That will wrap up the FL season for winter/spring.

I'm one week out from my first cataract surgery now and the eye is finally settling down.  I can even swim in the pool this week and over the weekend now!  But the second surgery is Wed April 1 so then we start over again!  Boy I can hardly wait for this to be all over!!!  (I'm such a whiner!)  Hahaha.  

Friday, March 20, 2015

Diva Challenge: Tangle in Green (and Tangle A Day Calendar)

Diva's Challenge to work in "green".  

Every few days I get caught up on my calendar again!  Hahaha.  
I love "Itch".  I had forgotten about it.  

My eye is slowly healing…I think I had more swelling than some people have as the doctor increased the steroid drops for a few days.  But the comfort level is much better today and most of the "gritty" feeling in my eye is gone.  

I am teaching a Part II: Renaissance Tile class tomorrow so am glad that I am feeling pretty back to normal.  I am wearing my "old" glasses from a few years ago when the prescription was not as strong.  This seems to work better for me for reading and computer.  The cloudiness is gone from my eye but it's hard yet to see how much actual improvement yet.  I still have some "blurriness" in that eye from surgery.  I think for me it's going to take some time for the healing.  Some folks it's almost instantaneous but not for me.  

Happy first day of spring everyone!