Saturday, April 30, 2011

Day 28 - Basketry Sample

Today was the first day of a biennial weekend of classes put on by the Misti Washington Gourd and Basket Guild and sponsored by the San Diego Botanical Gardens in Encinitas. My friend Mollie is a member of the guild, but she was unable to go to the class she had signed up for today, so I got to go in her place. Yay for me! It was a class in making a rainstick, taught by Jennifer Wool from the Bay area. We used a heavy-duty cardboard mailing tube as the rainstick and wove reed, cane and basket stuff (that's a technical term) over it to cover up the cardboard. I've done very little weaving, but Jennifer's instructions were good and she was very patient. I didn't finish but I have all the supplies and I'm confident I can finish with her instructions. Just for fun, and also so I can remember the process better, I took some scrap pieces of the reed we used and split it into little skinny strips, then used them as the "spokes" for a mini sample of the beginning of the bottom of the rainstick. For the weavers, I used waxed linen cord. So that is my ATC for today!
Go make art!

Day 27 - The Dreamer

What is she dreaming of? Waiting for life to happen?  Or... Perhaps her next art project?
Go make art!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Day 26 - Zentangle® #10 with Watercolor

Had fun today with a Zentangle® on watercolor paper with watercolor washes to add a little interest.
Go make art!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Day 25 - Zentangle® #9

I'm getting the hang of these Zentangle® patterns. Too fun!
Go make art!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Day 24 - Zentangle® #8

More Zentangle® fun!
Go make art!

Day 23 - Paris Love #2

I have a large number of collage things related to Paris, so I thought I'd reprise my Paris love theme. Not happy with this one at all. Everything is so scattered; I am tired tonight and not thinking clearly. I should have started with a clean background, too. Some of these old backgrounds already have the ribbon and some other stuff I can't peel off. At least I finished one today.
Go make art!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Day 22 - Dream Always

Another collage using background paper I made long ago.
Go make art!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Day 21 - Harp/Blues Festival

I went to the Harp Festival in La Mesa today and had a great time. It's harmonica harps and the music was blues. Yesterday I helped a friend make 20 lbs of awesome homemade potato salad that went behind the scenes with the food for the musicians. Today I spelled the helpers selling burgers a little but mostly got to sit and enjoy the music, which was great!

I brought my sketching and painting stuff just in case, so I drew a little scene from the festival and added watercolor. Since we were early to help set up, we got a great central location for our chairs, but that meant the sound engineer's equipment blocked part of the view of the stage; next year I will move over a little bit so I can see the stage, or at least the center of the stage. I rarely had a good view of the lead player/singer.

Clearly I need more practice with both drawing and painting, but for me, it's a pretty good job. The musicians did have feet, but I washed them away when I went in with the background wash and a slightly darker wash to make a shadow for them. The more I tried to fix it the worse it got so I gave up and all I can say is that the bass player was wearing boots and the guy playing the harmonica did not have pigeon-toed clown feet. :-)
Go make art!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Day 20 - Paris Love

I managed to get this one done early since I've got lots of stuff to do today. Not 100% happy with it but I do like it, and it photographed well. Things work much better when you don't glue anything down until you are absolutely sure where you want it to go. That's the voice of experience talking; sigh...
Go make art!

Day 19 - You're Special

I stumbled upon a whole stash of collage bits last night and spent a fair amount of time sorting and playing with it.  Lots of stuff left over from various projects, paper scraps, stickers, rubons, etc. Fun!
Go make art!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Day 18 - Windows onto Distant Lands

The good news is that much silliness went into this ATC. It was completely overloaded; all but the kitchen sink, as the saying goes. So I pared it down and ended up with this.  Go figure.
I think this image is from Chris Cozen, my acrylic/mixed media teacher. She is so generous with her resources and images. It's probably Italy or some exotic place like that.
Go make art!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Day 17 - Green

Today's theme is/was green. One thing I really noticed today is how hard it is sometimes to make a collage this small. Although I'm glad I didn't pick a larger format for this challenge,  I had to reject a bunch of stuff because it was too big for the ATC.
BTW, the picture is of my grandmother, grandfather and his sister. Their last names began with "F".
Go make art!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Day 16 - New Zentangle® patterns

Using 2 patterns I learned at the class yesterday, Fern and Printemps. We also did Cadent, but I need more practice on that!
Go make art!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day 15 - More fun Zentangle®

Today I took a Zentangle® class at The Stamp Addict, so I was inspired to make another Zentangle® ATC.
Go make art!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Day 14 - Balboa Park Roses

Today is National Sketchcrawl Day. I met up with Andrea from the San Diego Sketchcrawlers group at Balboa Park. We were going to sketch in the cactus garden, but it is quite warm today so we went to the pergola in the rose garden. The roses are so beautiful! If you like roses, it is definitely worth the visit. This is one of the best times to visit Balboa Park. This rose is variety "Chihuly".
I blogged about the Sketchcrawl here.
Go make art!
Edited 7 PM: I'm finally home and able to take a decent photo of my ATC and get it right side up!

Day 13 - Zentangle® with watercolor

This one was drawn on watercolor paper first and then I used watercolor over it. I'm not at all happy with the Mooka pattern on the right - it's kind of a mess. I almost pasted a postage stamp or something over it, but it's late and I want to go to bed. I think I'm going to look for my colored pencils (currently lost somewhere in the black hole of my house) and use them instead of the watercolor. Or maybe watercolor pencils. We'll see.
Go make art!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Day 12 - Timeless Journey

The background of this and yesterday's ATC have a lot of iridescent color to them that is impossible for me to photograph. They almost look metallic in real life. I really like the Chinese Bronze-age style of characters from 3000 - 4000 years ago.
Go make art!

Day 11 - Spring

I finally found the papers I had painted with acrylic paints and then cut into ATC-size pieces a couple years ago. They will make nice backgrounds for the next couple of weeks of ATCs. I love Graphic 45 papers too, they have such nice images and colors. I did learn something new with this one: trying to make Zentangles over the paint is not such a good idea. It's really hard to write smoothly on a painted surface, especially with the opaque gel pens where you have to write slowly in order to get enough ink. My handwriting is bad enough, I don't need any obstacles!
Go make art!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Day 10 - Write Soon

I've spent almost as much time trying to get a good picture of this ATC as I did making it. Yes, the color is weird, but in real life it doesn't look so sickly. Anyway, I spent a few hours today gathering together collage materials so now I have too many things to choose from. Haha, not really - I expect I'll need it all and more before my year of ATCs is over. I do like the border embellishment - I found my main stash of it. It's called German Scrap and it's a foiled paper that's been embossed and die-cut. It comes in a bunch of designs and colors. Most of mine comes from either Collage Stuff or ARTchix Studios. I have also gotten collage image sheets and other stuff from both of them. My other favorite place for art goodies is Sky Blue Pink; they have tons of stuff for altered arts and collage.
Go make art!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Day 9 - A Zentangle® Collage

Today's ATC is strange but ended up being kind of fun. Still frustrated with the state of my collage materials, I decided to make another Zentangle® because I knew I could make it fairly quickly. I didn't want to spend a lot of time on today's card because I'm tired tonight.  I went to the zoo yesterday and my feet are still complaining. Plus yesterday's ATC wasn't actually finished until well after 1 AM, so I didn't get enough sleep last night either.

Before shading the Zentangle® I decided to add some watercolor to it instead - forgetting that it is Bristol board, not watercolor paper. The blue and purple were too thick and went on very dark, so it couldn't be lifted like real watercolor paper would have allowed. I added the border of sawtooth decorative paper and a sticker to give it a little more interest. There's no boo-boo under the sticker, honest! Just too much paint.

Even though I ended up spending more time than I planned, I like combining the doodling and collage so look for more of that in the future. Time for sleep now. Thanks for visiting, now go make art!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Day 8 - Mom's cousin Ruth

This is my Mom's cousin Ruth in the mid to late 40s I think. My collage supplies are so disorganized that I got rather frustrated while looking for stuff to use. Sigh...
Go make art!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Day 7 - My Mom as a little girl

This picture is of my Mom and grandfather when she was about 4 years old, in 1922 or possibly 1923. I'm pretty sure I never saw this picture until after she died and I was looking for pictures of her as a child. It's one of my favorite pictures of her.
Go make art!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Day 6 - Hidden Depths

I love making collages. I found this mermaid in some collage bits I got from somewhere and I had just been looking at the cool paper, thinking it looked like underwater; the rest of it just came together. It's amazing how much easier it is to make an ATC on a deadline. Thanks for visiting!
Go make art!

Day 5 - New Zentangle® patterns

I was going to do another collage today but didn't have time to finish the one I started. Later I was showing Zentangle® to some friends of mine so I made this ATC. I used a slightly modified Betweed and one of my new favorite patterns, Zedbra. I almost got home in time to post it on the right day. I need to figure out how to email a post to the blog from my phone so I can post things on time. But since the Networked Blogs program doesn't seem to post my entries on Facebook in a timely manner, I guess it's not that critical.
Go make art!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Day 4 - Secrets of Nature

I'm trying to collect all my collage materials together, so I decided to make a collage for today's ATC. I have a feeling that it won't be long before I'm wondering what possessed me to do something like this challenge. This came together with random bits I happened to have already.
Go make art!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Day 3 - Goldfish

A couple of weeks ago I went to the Cherry Blossom Festival at the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa park. They have a delightful koi pond, and the Zoo also has a nice collection of gigantic koi. I was going to make a picture of koi, but decided to do a goldfish instead because I miss having an aquarium. I used to have one with a bunch of goldfish and a couple of clown loaches that got to be quite large. This was done on a Strathmore watercolor ATC.
Go make art!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Day 2 - Another Zentangle®

I love doing Zentangle® patterns, they are so much fun! It is a highly meditative form of drawing. Some people tell me that it would drive them insane to doodle like this, but I think it would be good for them to have something like this to focus on. Just sayin'.
Go make art!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Day 1 - ATC

After all the work I did getting ready for this challenge; cutting cards, carving the stamp, stamping over 120 cards and writing the intro to the blog, I'm exhausted! So what was I going to put on the first ATC? For lack of energy to think of anything else, I thought I could inaugurate my year of ATCs by simply writing ATC with Zentangle® doodles. I didn't have a plan so it's all kind of awkward. In typical fashion, after I drew some outlines, I doodled the letters in reverse order. I'm not sure how the A got so out of control, perhaps as a rebellion over the rather sedate T. This one definitely could use a reprise when I'm not so tired.
Go make art!

A new challenge

A little background: I recently met up with a few members of San Diego Sketchcrawlers group for a nice morning at Balboa Park. It was wonderful to meet new friends Rachel and Lydia and re-connect with Stephen, who I've met a few times in relation to stamping, journaling and bookmaking. They were so welcoming and enthusiastic it was impossible to resist the enthusiasm. The day was April 1, 2011. They all had little giftees for everyone so I felt rather silly, though I'm trying to think of it as a birthday of sorts, since I got stuff and didn't give any. The birthday of the return of my art life, or something grandiose like that, so I don't feel so lame; all I had to share were pumpkin seeds, which were declined graciously. Lydia made a great video of the morning. I'm fairly new to sketching, so all of their sketchbooks were amazing to me. Lydia even made two great sketches, and she came late, too! But I guess for a newbie, my tree isn't so bad.

Anyway, they talked about a lot of different things, and some of it really struck a chord with me. Particularly Noah Scalin's books Skulls and 365: A Daily Creativity Journal. Rachel brought her copy of 365 to show us. After visiting the websites Skull a Day and 365: Make Something Every Day, I got inspired to do something myself, as I feel the need to have a little more self-discipline in my life. (I seriously need a LOT of it, but I'm starting with a little and hoping it grows.) I actually bought the Skulls book a few years ago and found it fascinating, but had forgotten since then that he had made one a day, which is marvelous and amazing. On his 365 website, he posts info about people taking up the 365 challenge to make something every day, and it's fascinating to see what people are doing every day: making a book a day, taking a nature photo, daily turtles, snails, and scissors, a daily kindness, a daily thank you, and so many more. It's extremely inspiring.
I decided to make an ATC every day. I have not set any limits on style, theme, media or anything like that, mainly because then I would have to make a decision, which would encourage procrastination.

The first thing I did was carve a stamp for the back of the ATCs. Then I cut a bunch of ATCs and stamped them. I found some packs of pre-cut ATCs in watercolor paper and acrylic paper and stamped them too. So I have a lot of blank ones to use, I think at least 4 months worth.
Here is my lap desk as I was stamping the cards. I started this blog as a challenge to myself - being accountable for an ATC every day will definitely be a motivator to finish.
A little more background: I have to give credit to Traci Bunkers, whose daily carving and sketching and journaling have also been inspiring. I am in awe. I almost started a carving a day, but not yet (was too lazy/forgetful to go get a bunch of cheap erasers). She sells Henna stencils in her Etsy shop; I got a few recently and am looking forward to trying them out. 
I recently started doing Zentangle®, and love it! You can see a few of mine on Flickr here. Jennifer Van Pelt, owner of the Stamp Addict, has started a Zentangle® club that meets twice a month, and is teaching Zentangle® classes, and is very helpful and encouraging. I find it very meditative and I love the results, too. I expect a lot of the ATCs will be Zentangle® doodles, or contain some doodling, especially at the beginning.
Kelly Kilmer is a Southern California artist and teacher, and journals constantly. Her creative output amazes me. She is also a good resource for info on supplies, places to spend one's limited art supply budget, and inspiration.
OK, I just realized this is starting to sound like an awards acceptance speech. Sheesh! I guess I've been trying to figure out what exactly has been the trigger for my recent surge of motivation and enthusiasm to create. Maybe as the ATCs pile up, it will become more clear...