Monday 28 September 2015

I'm back and I've got some exciting news...

Hi Folks! I hope you all had a great summer,
and are enjoying the beautiful fall season!
In my part of the world, the tress have begun 
to turn into their glorious autumn colours.
We put on sweaters, drink more tea
and marvel at the beauty and colours around us 
as we witness the seasons change once again.

Life has been very full for us,
and change continues in our lives as well.
Over the summer, I took a blogging hiatus 
so that I could focus on other parts of my life,
and chip away at some of my art goals.

I'm really excited to let you know that I have been invited 
to participate in an upcoming art show 
which will be held right downtown in our nation's capital!

The show, which is hosed by Roger TV's Barbara Laurenstin,
 is called Art in Fashion 613
{because "Art can be Fashion and Fashion can be Art"}

You can find me in one of the booths,
selling my art.
A bit about my art:

One of the things I have been really enjoying doing 
for the past two years or so,
is painting whimsical girls.
I often scan through fashion sites, magazines and Pinterest
for inspiration for my girls' outfits.

Here is a peak at some of the art I'll be selling:


Some of my art will also be sold as prints in various forms. 
Here are a few examples of the accent cushions I'll be selling:

 If you are in, or near, Ottawa I'd love for you to come on out to the show!
Tickets are available here.


Sunday 3 May 2015

more exciting news

Hey Friends,
Happy Spring to you!  
With spring comes new life, 
new seasons 
and new opportunities.

I'm so thrilled to announce that I have a new opportunity
that has come my way...
I will be teaching 
six week series on art journaling!

We will be delving it all sorts of techniques 
with acrylic paint,
sprays and inks,
water colours 
{and some other yummy 
mixed media supplies}

If you want to launch into a fun new art journey,
or if you've already begun, 
and want to learn more skills,
this class is for you!
{No art experience is necessary}

Here's the when and where:

beginning Saturday, May 16th
from 10am to 12pm
at the

Don't delay, classes start soon!

Register here or here to join me!
{Barcode is: 99686}

I sure hope you can join me!



Thursday 23 April 2015

free download for you

It has dawned on me that some of you reading this blog
might not know what art journaling is.
Please allow me to explain...

Art journaling is a way of keeping a journal 
in which you use a mix of art and words 
to express yourself, to practice drawing or art techniques,
 or to document your life, thoughts or discoveries.

{Art journals have been around for a very long time. 
A quick google search of "Leonardo da Vinci art journal" 
will prove that.}

In my recent workshop, 
I created a couple of pages that had words
which could be used in an art journal.

They were included in the welcome packets I gave them:

 Today, I thought I would share them, 
and make them available as a download here 
for you to use in your own journal.
{Please keep these for personal use only.}



Tuesday 14 April 2015

art journaling workshop

What a wonderful Saturday morning I had!
This past Saturday I ran an art journaling workshop 
at the Bluesfest School of Music and Art (BSOMA).

I went into the morning with such excitement,
which was equalled by they enthusiasm 
of the wonderful people who registered.
We had full registration 
{with some others who also wanted to join in!}

Here's a peak at the morning, tables set up and ready to go:

I created a little packet for each person. With only two hours, I was definitely pressed for time, but I wanted to introduce some colour theory, along with a quick talk about the many different ways to keep an art journal.

I based the class around some of my art journal pages,
 teaching the techniques I used here:
And then the wonderful process of creating began. 
A few of the folks had art journaled before, 
but for most this was the beginning of a beautiful journey for them.

The ladies {and one man} were so open, friendly and engaged. 
They were truly a pleasure to teach.

 I absolutely loved teaching this class and had such wonderful feedback, 
with requests for more, and longer workshops.
{Do you guys know how humbled and excited I am about that??}

I am working with BSOMA to create series of classes, so stay tuned!


Friday 10 April 2015

workshop time

Hey Friends! 

I'm excited and ready for my art journaling workshop tomorrow. 
I heard last week that it is sold out
Yes, sold out!! Wow, I'm blown away. 
Thank you to those who love, support and keep believing in me. 
You are a gift in my life. 

Here's a peak at the cute {and info-packed} little packages I'll be giving out. 

I am hoping to bless the sweet folks who have signed up,
and send them home inspired with a new passion,
and some skills to fuel it!

I plan on posting some pictures from it, so stay tuned. 


Wednesday 25 March 2015

art journaling workshop

I'm seriously excited to announce that in April,
 I will be teaching an art journaling workshop
in partnership with the Bluesfest School of Music & Art!

I'd love to have you join me in this two hour class!
Together we will talk about a whole slew of art journaling techniques,
you'll see examples from my art journals
and we will create some fun pages.

You will leave the class with ideas and resources 
to help you continue to explore, create and discover
in the world of art journaling!

You can register through:

The Westboro Brainery
Dovercourt Community Centre

I sincerely hope to see you there!

Wednesday 18 March 2015

my bird love

If you've followed my blog for a while
you probably know that I love birds.

My art journals pretty much
always have some bird pages in them. 
They usually aren't detailed pieces of artwork, 
but quick sketches and doodles
that capture my love of birds.

Is there something that captures you? 
Something you tend to find yourself drawn to over and over again?
I'd love to hear what that is!

Here are a few of my bird pages...


Saturday 7 March 2015

water colour love

One thing you might not know about me is that I love using water colours! 
They are my go-to supply when I want to add colour to a sketch or doodle, 
and a carry a travel pack with me in my purse at all times 
(as well as a small journal, a water brush,
 and several pencils, black pens and a white gel pen). 

I like to vary my styles, 
and I don't feel that I have to confine myself 
to using them in one specific way.
Their versatility is definitely something I love about them!

I've mentioned before that one of my favourite artists is Danielle Donaldson.
Her work and style continually inspire and influence me. 
Check her gorgeous work out here.
(She will soon be teaching another on-line class. and that makes me very happy!)

Here are a few water colours I've done in the past few months: 


Wednesday 18 February 2015

creating dynamic backgrounds

A while back I said that I would write a blog about possible supplies 
for creating a background in a painting or an art journal page. 
As I set out to do that today, I realized that the possibilities are endless!
So, I picked some basic ones to show here and I will list more ideas
at the bottom of the page.

Creating backgrounds with many layers is not only a lot of fun, 
but it gives your work of art a great deal of depth and interest.
It is a great way to experiment,
so be creative: cut, tear, crumple, form your supplies!

One of the great things about layered backgrounds is that there really are no mistakes.
Anything you don't like can get pushed into the background and made to fade away,
which simply creates more beautiful depth. 

Here are a few of the things that I use to create a background:

 Handmade paper: this paper is often art just the way it is!

Napkins/Serviettes: There are so many designs out now. One great place to shop for this is your local Dollar Store as they often have an inexpensive selection.

Tissue Packs: like napkins, you can find many patterned tissue packets 
and they layer beautifully in any artwork.
(Hint: for both napkins and tissues, 
peal away all the layers expect for the top patterned one.)

Every craft and art store sells patterned paper! 
I have found that I personally tend to prefer the smaller sized paper pads 
(around 6"x6") as they tend to have finer patterns on them.

 I use doilies both directly on my artwork or as a stencil.

Thrift stores always have old clothing patterns.
The paper is nice and thin which is great for layering. 
Sometimes I cut out the lines on the pattern and simply lay those down on my backgrounds.

Practise paper and test paper: save all of these! 
They are usually filled with colours you like, 
and are a wonderful way of making your background 
even more personal!

Gift tissue paper: so may colours and patterns to choose from.  
Like napkins and tissues, this paper is very thin 
and is great for adding translucent layers.

Acrylic paints, watercolours, guache, daubers, inks and sprays. I don't think there is anything more versatile for a background than paints and inks.  Be aware that some (like acrylic and many inks) are permanent when dry. Others, like watercolour paint, will bleed and move when any liquid is applied. To make water-soluble supplies permanent, 
seal them with a sealant (like this) before adding your next layer.

 Stamps, stamps stamps! 
These are soooo great for adding texture to the background
(and the foreground) of a painting.
Again! Remember to seal your layer if you are not using a permanent ink pad like this!

Oh my! I love washi tape and am *somewhat* addicted to it!
I bought the sheets of washi from Christy Thomlinson's on-line store (Scarlet Lime)
(Confession: I'm not showing you all the washi tape I have, 
and I haven't stopped buying it!
Hmm... I wonder if my husband is going to read this post!!)  

So, this is just a start. Really it is! 
There are sooooo many other things that I use 
(and that I don't use, but you might!)...

• sheet music (I use this a lot!)
• newspaper
• magazines
• wrapping paper
• wall paper
• post cards
• greeting cards
• postage stamps
• envelopes
• ephemeral of all sorts
• on-line images that you print 
(*you can can glue these directly, 
or use a transfer technique to put the image onto your artwork)
• pens & markers
• inktense blocks and coloured pencils
• mark making tools of all sorts
(perhaps that will be another blog post)
• gel mediums to glue papers on and to add texture 
(such as: this or this or this or this or this)
• book pages 
(yup, I have some books that I rip the pages out of 
which is an accomplishment for someone like me who loves books!)
• paper towels
• rub-ons 
(I usually leave these to the final stages of a painting or journal page, 
but they certainly could be used in a background)
gelli plate mono printing techniques

I'm sure there are other ideas out there ... if you use something that I haven't listed, 
please comment below. I'd love to hear what you use.

Happy art-making folks! 


Monday 2 February 2015

celebrate progress // try something new

One of the things I've wanted to do for a long time is try my hand at stamp making.
While I have been pretty busy with some new initiatives around art
{which I'll certainly share when I am able to!}
I decided to give it a try.

In a world of Pinterest and perfection
trying something new can be intimidating
to say the least, 
but forcing yourself to step out
bit by bit
will open new doors, 
and illuminate parts of yourself
that you may have never seen.

Here is a truth 
that God whispered to me one day
when I was fretting about areas of personal struggle:

"Look for progress, 
not perfection. 
That way you can celebrate 
any small advance."

So, with that I mind,
I tackle new things,
and I celebrate small advances in my life.

I have had a high density rubber block for quite some time.
It sat in a drawer, 
patiently waiting to be used for just over a year.
Today I pulled it out and carved my first rubber stamp.

I did not remember to take a picture of what it looked like before I unpackaged it,
but here is the chunk that remained after I carved into part of it.
{my carving tool, self-healing cutting mat and the product label are included 
in case you want to try it yourself.}

I made a simple leaf pattern and drew it directly on the block. 

For more complicated patterns,
I think I would draw the image on a separate paper 
and then use transfer paper to get the image to the block.

Here are a few pictures of my process and the result:

It is very simple and flawed, but I don't care.
It was totally fun!!
I'll add this to my stamp collection 
and use it in other art initiatives.

I'll leave you with this quote I saw today
{author unknown to me}

"Embrace imperfection, 
its a sign that you are not afraid 
to try NEW things."