Sunday, April 28, 2013

Should I change my name?

I'm thinking about changing the name of my blog (or "blob" as my mother calls it).  I named it Procrastination Rehab because I was a major procrastinator.  However, this blog has seriously helped to rehabilitate me.  I've gotten fairly consistent, as far as, creating something every day.

This blog is a record of my journey to become the artist that I've always wanted to be.

I've been trying to think of a name that fits me.  My first thought was  One of my best features would definitely be my feet. They are small (size 5 or euro 35) and they haven't gained weight as I've aged, like the rest of me.  My husband always says that he married me because of my cute feet.

I'm going to keep thinking.  Any ideas would be appreciated!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Those Damn Chickens!

Everyone knows that I love my chickens.  We have 3 beautiful hens, Zebra, Molly, and Rhodey.  They have a large coop and we let them out every afternoon to walk around the yard eating bugs and taking their "dirt baths".

Today, I cooked some grits for them to have, along with their regular chicken feed.  They love grits so I thought it would be a nice treat for them.  I headed out to the coop, opened the door and things just went downhill from there.

All three of them were siting at the top of the coop on these rafter-like boards.   When I opened the door, all three of them flew right at my face.  I hit the ground fast and they just missed me.  They actually had the nerve to look at me like I had scared THEM.  But, they commenced their bug-hunting and I sat down to watch them and draw a little.  Here are some rough sketches.  I've never drawn a chicken before.  It's obvious that I need to work on it.
After about an hour, it was time to get them back in the coop.  Usually, I just get behind them, waving my arms, saying "BACK IN THE COOP" in a very low, firm voice.  But, they were not going back into the coop.  Those chickens ran around like little maniacs.  They would get near the door, acting like they were going in, only to take a sharp left and start running.  Now usually anytime I see my chickens running from behind I crack up.  There is nothing funnier than to see a chicken run.  But today - not so funny.  I tried everything.  I was chasing them while waving long sticks in both hands.  I started building barricades in an attempt to block them.

While I was frantically trying to round them up, it reminded me of something my husband told me a long time ago.  He said that Mike Tyson used to train by chasing chickens and trying to catch them.  I thought that was just horrible.  How mean, chasing poor little chickens.  Well let me tell you.  Chickens can hold  their own.  It's not that they are really that fast.  It's that they can cut left, right, and spin around better than any NFL running back.

The sun was starting to go down and I was almost in tears.  I can't just leave them out because I am way to fearful and neurotic for that.  I would have visions all night of them being grabbed by hawks, mauled by foxes, or raped by a roving band of roosters from the wrong side of the tracks.  I had to keep going.  I couldn't give up.  FINALLY, I got them in.  After closing the coop door and walking toward my house, I swear that their cackling sounded a lot like laughter.

Here's a couple things that I have worked on:

This is the corner of my bedroom.  The black thing on the wall above the TV is a stand that the old TV used to sit on.  My husband really should remove it!

I'm trying to get used to the Prismacolor pencils. (I also can't seem to get my eyes at the same height)

I was in a little crafty mood and covered my clipboard with paper and washi tapes.

I was practicing shading faces with the colored pencils (from Suzi Blu's Mixed Media Girls)

Whats there to say - a girl in a turtleneck.

Another girl face.  I like the shading in this one.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

A Little Piece of Faith

I had gotten some little 5X5 canvases for a dollar at Michaels.  They were liitle inexpensive canvases that already had a picture on them for a child to paint.  I figured that, for a dollar, they would be used for something.

Last night I was looking for something fast to do.  I brushed a couple coats of gesso on the canvas to cover the black picture outline.  I stamped on sheet music with black Stazon ink then cut a heart out of  a book page from an old book, then painted it with watery green Soy Paint.  I didn't have any pre-made chipboard letters.  So, I printed FAITH off the computer, enlarged it, taped it to some card stock, and used a razor knife to cut out each letter.  (You then have a FAITH stencil that you can use later).  I glued the heart and letters to the canvas with gel medium, added some charcoal pencil around the heart and dry-brushed Liquitex Black paint onto the letters.  I added some more black paint lightly around the edge of the canvas, then sprayed with clear archival, semi-gloss varnish.  Start to finish, it took about an hour.  I'm going to do some other words.  Maybe, BRAVE, STRONG, HAPPY, etc.

I must be honest - this was not, totally, my creation.  I was blog-hopping and saw a banner that had plaques very similar to this.  I've tried to search my history so that I could find the blog and give the artist credit, because I can't remember her name.  I haven't been able to find it yet, but when I do, I will add it to this post.  I don't want to take credit for any art that is not my idea.  You know, it's difficult because I'm always finding inspiration from different artists.  I'll see a technique or style and want to try it.  My intention is to use all of this acquired inspiration to build my very own style.  Many of the artists that I admire have tutorials and workshops to teach their techniques,  As a matter of fact, I am taking a workshop rigt now by Suzi Blu, called Fairies, so I will be painting some fairies very soon.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

An Old Quit

Quilts are really interesting things.  I've seen quilts that were so detailed that they looked like paintings.  Some quilts tell a story.  The AIDS quilt is a beautiful remembrance of loved ones.

The amount of work that goes into making a quilt is impressive.  Choosing the fabrics, in itself, can be daunting.  I've never made a quilt.  I remember starting one years ago.  I think I got 5 squares sewn together before I gave up.

My mother gave me an old, handmade quilt a few days ago.  She told me it was made by Aunt Jeannie.  It occurs to me now that I don't know if Aunt Jeannie was my mother's aunt or my grandfather's aunt.  I guess I should clear that up.

Since I'll probably never make a quilt, I figured that I would draw a picture of the one my mother gave to me. There are probably 4 times as may triangles in the actual quilt, but I'm not that disciplined.

I was also practicing my facial feature drawing skills this afternoon.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Girl Number 3

I'm on a roll.  I painted another girl on the back of a cereal box today.  Again, this one is very Kelly Rae Roberts-esque.  I tried another new technique.

I covered one of my rubber stamps in gel medium, instead of ink, then I stamped it on the surface.  I used water color to paint over it.  The gel medium acts as a resist to the water color.  It looked really good.  I wish that I had taken a picture of it right after I used the water color.  I ended up painting over it with acrylic paint because the dress needed to be more pronounced.  You can still see the stamp through the acrylic, but not as much as with the water color.  I want to try it again on something else.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Thinking About Flying

Inspired by the works of Kelly Rae Roberts and Susie Blu, I spent this Sunday afternoon trying another face.

I was very patient this time.  I started out with a piece of cardboard (OK, it's the back of a cereal box).   I tried something that I saw in a video by Samantha Kira Harding.  I put gesso on the cardboard, then wrote all over it with Prismacolor Premier markers (she used Copics, but I don't have any), then brushed gesso over the writing.  It smeared some of the marker which looked really pretty and you  could see a sort of ghost image through the gesso.  Then I used stencils and spray ink, acrylic dabbers, and ink dabbers.  I collaged some torn book pages, decorative tissue paper, and a lacy rice paper.  I went over everything with watered down Golden Titan Buff to calm it down a little and make the papers more integrated.

I drew the girl with a charcoal pencil, then painted her face, arms and hair.  After it dried I used a charcoal pencil, Pitt markers, and a white gel pen to draw her facial features.  After I painted the dress, I stamped a butterfly on regular white paper, reduced it, then colored it with markers and glued it to the dress.  I added the wings, some more stamping, and a little molding paste through a plastic grid.

I just need to brush a layer of gloss medium and it will be finished.

You know it's hard to develop one's own style.  I watch a lot of tutorials on Youtube and am addicted to arts/crafts magazines.  When someone is showing you how to do something, naturally, your piece is going to look quite a bit like theirs (just not as good, of course).  I'm guessing that many people gain inspiration and technique from others, then eventually develop their own style.

I'm working on it!!

Pretty Paisley

As much as I try to do other forms of art, I always end up pulling out the pens and drawing.  I just love to draw with a nice black pen, then color.

I bought a new book on Friday -  Creative Doodling & Beyond: Inspiring exercises, prompts, and projects for turning simple doodles into beautiful works of art by Stephanie Corfee.  It's good because she goes through different doodling shapes and boarders and leaves space for you to practice next to her doodles.  Okay, can you tell which page is mine and which is Stephanie's?  Of course you can.....mine are on the right.

Here's my doodling from last night.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Playing with Colored Pencils

Here's the project that I worked on while watching Celebrity Appentice.  I was very happy about 2 things on Sunday night - this drawing and that Omarosa was FIRED!!

I used a black Faber Castel Pitt Artist Pen and Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils.

Here's the tutorial  that I watched to learn how to draw the fat squiggly things.

Blowing Alcohol Inks

There are several videos on youtube about blowing on alcohol inks. So, I tried it and it is so easy, so fast, and so pretty. I made this one in about five minutes. I used glossy inkjet paper, Ranger inks, and a straw. You just drip the ink on the paper and blow.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

ZATISSE - A little Zentangle, a little Matisse

I found the Modern Master Challenge on Art Journaling,  I found it a little too late  They were doing Matisse in February.  However, I thought I would take a look at some of his paintings and find out a little bit about the guy.

He was pretty interesting.  He hung out with Gertrude Stein, Picasso, the Cone sisters (who were very interesting - I might write a post about them someday) and other artists and collectors,

Matisse was a painter, printmaker, and sculptor.  In 1941 he had surgery and remained in a wheelchair afterwards. With the help of an assistant, he started creating collage-type work.  He called it gouaches découpés.  He brushed gouache onto paper, cut it in pieces and  attached it to other paper.  His works were large in scale.  During this period he created the Blue Nudes, which are probably some of his most recognizable pieces.

So here is my tribute to Matisse.  I zentangled one of his nudes.

The Real Blue Nude

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Look at My Tote Bag

I really like Zazzle.  I discovered the site a couple years ago.  There are other similar businesses on the web, but I've used Zazzle and haven't been disappointed.

I would like to put some of my art on greeting cards, coffee cups, tote bags, etc.  So, I uploaded a piece to Zazzle and ordered a tote bag and a card to see how they would look.  I'm pleased, considering that I photographed the art journal page with my iPad.  If I actually decide to try to sell something, I will photograph my art using more professional equipment (better lighting, better camera, etc.)

I ordered the extra large bag, so it makes the picture look like of small.  It would probably look better on the regular sized tote bag.

This is a drawing that I did while watching "Dance Moms" last night.  I think this would look really cute on a coffee cup or dishes.  I think I'll order a coffee mug from Zazzle to check it out.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Playing around with Gelli Plates Again

I really love the Gelli Arts gelatin plate for monoprinting.  It is so easy and it's really simple to clean up. Inexpensive craft paint works the best.  The prints make great collage paper or backgrounds.

Here are a few that I did this afternoon.

I used a wood graining tool on these two!

Also, here's a painting that I did in my art journal some time ago.  I was flipping thru today and I had forgotten all about this one.  I touched the trees up a bit.  This is a little dark for me.

This is the Gelli plate that I use - the 8X10.