Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's time to get journaling about my health

I'm excited to show you my latest art journal work. Well actually, it's not so much a page as it is the journal itself. I've been meaning to alter a composition notebook that I got at the dollar store for a while now. I didn't know what I wanted to journal in it, but I wanted to make it pretty. Then Samie Kira Harding gave me something to journal. 

She's offering a mini-course called Art Journal Diary, and I'm really excited about it. For a while now, I've been trying to figure out how to journal my food, sleep, pain, and daily activities in one journal. It's become very important to me to track these things, to get a better handle on my fibromyalgia. Her course is all about how to journal your health, or daily activities. So far I love it. It comes with a PDF with examples of simple journal pages, tags, etc that you can use. So I decided that it was time to get to that composition notebook and get started on my art journal diary.

Additionally, Paula Phillips has started a Facebook group about arting your weight loss, so I figured that this would go hand in hand.

I used the Prima Song Bird collection, which was a Scrap'n with Flair kit, and it is so gorgeous and easy to work with! Of course it's hard to go wrong with Prima. So I covered the front and back covers with a pretty page, that already had some text on washi tape in the corner. I covered the seam with washi tape that I got at Desserres. Then I went for my stamps. I used the stamps that are part of the collection, and a Tim Holtz text stamp that I thought was appropriate. It says "Live in the moment and make it so beautiful that it will be worth remembering."

Altered composition notebook
That's what I want to do, live in the moment, to handle my stress better, and also enjoy the days when I am feeling good.

Cluster closeup
I used some of the chipboard pieces - this one says "Be free", and I clustered some Prima flowers around it, with a swallow charm, and some bling - also from Prima.

Corner flowers - don't you love Prima's flowers?
I clustered some more flowers in the upper corner to balance the page. I thought it was kind of cool how the peach leaves look like they belong to the flowers.

Long-suffering - this is what this journal is about
And then down in the corner, I placed another chipboard piece - this time a bird with the word "long-suffering" on it - and some flowers, with a bit of bling as well.

I love how it came together, and I'm really looking forward to working in it now. Since this notebook is going to be used almost like a Smash Book, I'm not too worried about smashing the flowers or anything, because most of my journaling will be put onto tags, journal spots, photos, etc. and then pasted into the book afterwards. I want it to be a real diary, and with it being a pretty one, it will be a pleasure to pick up every night before heading to bed.

I hope you get a chance to take Samie's course and try altering a book or composition notebook so that you get excited about journaling your day. Link me up to your altered book so that I can admire your work. And have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

What a great week...and a flower swap!

Well, it's been quite the week... I've received lots of happy mail, including prizes I won on National Scrapbooking Day, books I've ordered, a book that I've been published in, ephemera (amazing stuff) from a friend, and much more. It's been very exciting!

Almost every day I've had a package, or two, to open and oooh and ahhh over. My hubby is actually starting to get a bit jealous about it. 

These past few days I've been learning and making my very first fabric flowers for a flower swap with the gals who signed up for this month's handmade flower swap on Mrschievous Crafts' blog.

Now, admittedly I haven't played with paper in the traditional scrapbook kind of way much. But I am learning a lot, and having a heck of a lot of fun playing with paper. But I had a blast making flowers for this swap. I decided to make flowers that were sort of representative of my style. Organic, eclectic, and grungy. So I used tshirt material, denim, paper, glitter brads, jewels, cardboard and ribbons. I really hope my swapping partner enjoys them. 

paper flower with glitter brad

rolled tshirt flower

rolled fabric flower on denim

flannel ribbon flower

jean and paper flower

paper flower with jewel brad

denim and tshirt flower

rolled flannel flower

tshirt ribbon flower

paper flower

paper, tshirt and denim flower

ribbon and cardboard flower
All the flowers were fun to make, and some were a definite challenge, but they are definitely reflective of my eclectic grungy glittery style. I'm throwing in some extra goodies and I'm keeping those a secret!

See you back here soon with my first You Tube video of an art journaling page using some amazing products from Scrap'n with Flair!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

He melted my heart

It was one of those weeks. I had been teaching in the classroom, something that usually leaves me weary and exhausted at the end of the week. I had received some good news though that kept my spirits high and kept me going, feeling like I had a purpose and had achieved something I never would have dreamed about. That email kept me going, feeling like I was on an absolute high. But I still doubted myself when it came to my art. It was a hobby, an outlet for me to pour out my stresses and my joys all onto a page, with paint, ink, stamps, flowers, you name it. To me I wasn't doing anything extraordinary, I was just playing with paint and paper.

Sitting on the couch feeling tired and weary from the teaching, my hubby came over to sit beside me, and I threw my legs over his to relieve the pain I felt in them. We looked at each other and he told me he was proud of me. The conversation continued something like this:

"Because I made it through the week of teaching without crashing?"


"Oh, you mean because of my art journals. It's just fun, no big deal."

"It is a big deal. You are an artist."

My heart melted.

I've been on cloud nine, ever since.

Mixed media journal page, using Neocolor II crayons, Glimmer mist, Prima flowers, tags, cardboard, ephemera

Closeup of the flowers and tags

Prima flowers are so lovely

Glimmer mist frame

I hope to be able to come back and tell you more about my happy news, but in the meantime I hope you enjoy my layout. And coming soon will be my first You Tube tutorial video. I'm looking forward to doing that.

Have a great week everyone!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Don't you just love warm spring mornings on weekends. The kind that makes you jump out of bed and go straight to the craft room? Oh, come on now, I'm sure that's not just me. Okay, well it's true that most of us will put on the coffee, and then have a cup of that dark liquid gold and suddenly mojo flows through the veins. It was that kind of weekend. I was on top of the world this weekend. For good reason. I had a long weekend to enjoy with my husband, sunshine, for the first time in many days, and warm sunshine. Not to mention happy emails and messages. Life was good. And it still is.

Prove to yourself that you can accomplish anything

Details of the layers
You can't tell very well from the picture above but the blue is metallic, which I painted some time ago and left undone. I have several pages like that in this journal, which makes it so much easier to get started with a quick page. This page took about half an hour. Art journaling need not be a long endeavour. Putting paint to paper is a great way to begin. You never know how things will end when you come back to the page later.

Enjoy your week everyone, and see what you can accomplish with small steps this week.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

National Scrapbooking Day Art Journal

Hi everyone! I had so much fun on Cynthia Gagen's Creative Edventures Live broadcast today. What fun! I had technical difficulties which took quite a few minutes to be sorted through, but I managed to get online, with a camera and got it working. I did my usual style of art journal page, incorporating scrapbook elements, textures using texture paste, cardboard, canvas, lace, etc. Take a look below:

This is the full-sized page, in my 9X12 mixed media journal. I like the quote with the butterfly because it implies that if we learn from today's life lessons, we can transform ourselves. Here are some close ups of the textures:

Texture paste covers the strings from the canvas for added movement

Additional cardboard texture and lace tuck out from under the cluster
I really enjoyed the show. I hope you all did too. Congrats to Carol who won a hand-made mixed media journal from me. Stay tuned for more projects to come later this week!

Have a great weekend, and a great remainder of National Scrapbook Day!

Friday, May 04, 2012

Tomorrow's main event

Tomorrow's main event for me is celebrating National Scrapbook Day as, of all things...a scrapbooker! Well sort of. Join me at 5:15 p.m. EST as I demonstrate how to do art journaling with a scrapbook twist, using things like texture paste, watercolour crayons, inked up fabric and more.

Hope to see you there tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Drum roll please...

Hi everyone. I promised that I would be back with my latest news, about one door that is closing and another that is opening. I'm so excited about this news, and you'll soon see why.

As you know, I've recently been playing with paint and paper, and scrapbook elements, and glitter, and the list goes on. It's been an amazing learning experience, and one that's brought me a lot of enjoyment, self examination and clarity about where I want to be creative in my life. I've been taking online classes, experimenting with different products and media, and loving every minute of it. But no matter what, I always seem to drift back to the scrapbooking aisle of the craft store, or the art store. Which brings me to my announcement...

I'm one of the newest members of the Scrap'n with Flair Design Team! I'll be designing for the Canadian-based store, and creating new projects and sharing tutorials and ideas on my blog here, and on their blog as well. I'll also be uploading some video projects that you can watch and art journal or scrap along with. They carry a great variety of products for the scrapbooker and art journalis alike, so you definitely have to check them out. I just received my first products, and I'm chompin' at the bit to get working with it and show it all to you!

I'm really excited about this new direction, and I hope that you'll continue to enjoy my blog posts, ideas, projects and tutorials in the future. So now that I've revealed the opportunity that opened to me, I hope you'll join me in trying out various projects, and linking me up to your online gallery so that I can admire your work!