Sunday, March 30, 2014

Sunday Snippets

Hello Dear Blog Readers,
It's Sunday Snippets, where I share a peek at my week in pictures...

What was the highlight of YOUR week? I'd love to hear about it!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Artful Journey Travel Diary - Part 5

Hello Dear Blog Readers,
I am back to share the highlight of An Artful Journey - Show and Share! This is the time everyone gathers to show and share what they have created for the past three days of workshops. It is a LOT of fun and excitement!

Be sure to have a cup of tea or coffee and settle in, because this post is a LONG one and BURSTING with creative goodness!

The Last Day of Workshops
On the last day of workshops, which end by 4pm, everyone assembles into the community meeting area to share the amazing work they created. This is always a wonderful time to see what everyone has been cooking up and every year it's ALWAYS AMAZING!

I shot photos of the work created in the jewelry workshop taught by Stephanie Lee and the doll and journal workshop taught by Mindy Lacefield and Danielle Daniel. These workshops generated some really creative stuff! Here is a peek at the fabulous creativity:

Paper Doll Stories with Mindy Lacefield and Danielle Daniel

Vision Quest: Symbols of Passage with Stephanie Lee

I did not photograph the books made in DJ's workshop but DJ posted some wonderful photos of my classmates holding their completed books in this blog post. My book was not exactly finished when DJ shot her photo, but it was getting close to finished. Everyone looks so happy holding their books in DJ's blog post - stop over to check out her blog post!

(And if you look carefully, you will see some of the prints DJ hung to inspire us that were raffled on the last day of classes)

Sadly, I did not get any photos of the work created in Katie Kendrick's workshop and I did not get photos of work made in Albie Smith's workshop but the work created was fantastic as it has always been if you check out these past retreat photos.

Usually, Cindy takes a photo of everyone at the retreat, a 'class photo' of sorts. This year we turned the tables and requested a photo of the instructors, since this was to be the last Artful Journey Retreat and the request was granted!

Everyone clamored to get a shot of all the instructors with Cindy, our hostess with the 'most-est' and for awhile, it was like a crowd of paparazzi! Flash bulbs were flashing and people were crowding to get a shot of these wonderful artful women:

It was a wonderful gathering of sharing, wine and Cindy's famous retreat cookies!

Completing My Book and Some Greeting Cards
I eventually went back to the classroom to complete my book. The actual binding technique was a time-consuming one so I didn't really complete my book until 9:30pm, but here are a few photos of the bound book:

I had also begun to create a few 'greeting cards' using the sewn signature technique DJ taught us. She encouraged us to find different ways to use this technique so I thought I'd try my hand at making some greeting cards. I had a few spare pages to use so I splattered paint on them:

Add some fabric and lace scraps, a little stitching and some unique greeting cards are born:

I'm in process of making a few more of these fun mixed media cards, if you happened to see this Sunday Snippets post, but you can be sure that you will be seeing more of these cards because these are fun to make!

I am still working on photographing my entire book, page by page, but I will be sharing the full book by next week. In the meantime, I've already made a new book using the techniques I learned from DJ Pettitt, though this book is an abbreviated form, using more sewing than painting. Here is a peek at this new book:

There was still some magic to take place on the last day of the retreat, which I'll share next week when I share the pages of my "Bird in the Hand" book, so be sure to stay tuned!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Artful Journey Travel Diary - Part 4

Hello Dear Blog Readers,
I am back to share more from my time spent in the beautiful mountains of Santa Cruz at An Artful Journey Retreat, where I learned some wonderful new book making techniques from mixed media artist DJ Pettitt. You can catch up with my travel diary in these blog posts: Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3.

Special Event - Artist Collaboration Night!
Every year, there is always a fun event night. Last year we enjoyed an evening of art journaling in our specially made journals. The special event for this year's retreat was an artist collaborative painting that featured Mindy Lacefield, Danielle Daniel, Katie Kendricks and Stephanie Lee.

There was a canvas for each artist and everyone was invited to submit something to be used in the paintings: paper ephemera, photos, beads, anything that could be used in a mixed media painting. The participants would paint on the canvas in front of them until the 'barker' called out to move places and they would paint for 10 to 15 minutes until each participant had put their hand onto each canvas being used. It was fun to watch these artists create quickly and in the moment!

Many attendees were shooting photographs while this event was taking place, so it was not easy to get a good photograph - these are the only shots I managed that weren't blurry...

After the painting, there was a raffle for each canvas. I chose to opt out of the raffle because there is still artwork to be hung in the new home and I'm still not sure where all of it will go! Though I was secretly hoping to win something else to hang in my studio, I thought it was best for me to stay out of trouble, generally speaking...

Sometimes You Lose, Sometimes You Win...
I was actually hoping to win a string of prayer flags at this years retreat and there were plenty of flags a'flyin this year! Sadly, I did not manage to get any shots of the prayer flags hanging in the dining hall this year, but trust me - there was almost double the amount of flags that hang in the dining hall, so I thought I had a pretty good chance of winning a string I could hang in my studio window.

Alas! I did NOT win a string of prayer flags, but I did win a special print of artwork from DJ Pettitt's class! She had made several 12" x 12" prints of her bird artwork to inspire us as we constructed our "Bird in the Hand" books. DJ raffled off these prints on the last day of classes and the winners got to choose the print they wanted to take home. Here is the print I won:

Currently taped to the studio door until I can purchase a frame for it...

I thought this print would work with the color scheme I plan to use in the new studio and the message inscribed in the artwork would be a good message for me to read regularly...

 Yes, I think this fellow will be a good mascot for my new studio space!

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I hope you enjoyed this installment of my time spent in the beautiful mountains at An Artful Journey. In the next installment, I will be sharing some of the wonderful work made by students in the other workshops - there is some FANTASTIC creativity that happened and marvelous art created, so be sure to stay tuned!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sunday Snippets

Hello Dear Blog Readers,
It's Sunday Snippets, where I share a peek at my week in pictures...

What was the highlight of YOUR week? I'd love to hear about it!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Artful Journey Travel Diary - Part 3

Hello Dear Blog Readers!
I'm back to share more about my time at An Artful Journey and the wonderful book making techniques I learned with DJ Pettitt leading the way.

Today I'm sharing about some challenges I had before the workshop even took place and I'll be sharing my artful donations for the silent auction fundraiser...

You might want to grab a cup of coffee and a snack! This will be a long post, but full of creative goodness to look at =-)

Prepping paper for book making
Before heading to the retreat, DJ recommended that we prep our pages before arriving so we would have enough time to complete our books. The supply list had the type of paper we should buy and measurements for cutting it but it didn't mention how many sheets we would need so I thought one sheet would be enough.

It wasn't! =\

I have been operating on limited funds for some time so buying another sheet of paper was not an option, but after a few email inquires to DJ, I thought I would use an old watercolor painting found among my grandmothers things and I began to deliberately and judiciously tear the painting for book pages...

The painting is an interesting one, with a color palette I liked so I began to decide just how and where to cut it to use for my book pages - I cut from the side of the painting...

...and I cut from the bottom...

This is what remains of the painting until I cut the rest to make another book...

When I showed these pages to DJ, she loved them and was struck with my idea for recycling the watercolor paintings! There are so many watercolor paintings in my grandmother's old portfolio that there isn't enough wall space to hang them, but I knew that they could be cut into book pages for future book projects, as I've done with this book project!

Since I had already purchased some paints for this workshop, I knew my color palette would be a fall color palette, which is a favorite color scheme I like to work with.

I did not shoot as many photos during my work process, as I have done during past retreats, but here are some shots I took with my camera or my iPad - some of these were already shared on my Facebook page, so if you've seen some of these photos before, just bear with me!

We began with one of DJ Pettitt's photos of a raven, which was glued to the canvas board...

While the glued photo was drying, we began to paint our pages in various ways, using different tools to create TEXTURE, which I love!

We then began to paint around the bird to create the background for him...

We also began to add some collage elements for our pages...

I now have a background for my black bird!

Painting more pages as my front and back covers are drying...

My bird is painted and resting on a tree branch. DJ thought my bird was watching the sunset and the back cover was the sunset turning to night sky - I liked that idea!

My book is in the fabric assembly process now!

With help from my fellow classmates, my fabric spine, book cover 'linings' and 'signature wrap' look REALLY pretty! I had brought some scraps, but not quite large enough for covering the inner book covers, and not quite enough for scrapping a fabric collage with colors I used for the painted book covers...and I am someone who tends to color-coordinate a LOT!

I also didn't bring any rubber stamps or inks with me, since many of them were still packed away, but one of my fabulous classmates was kind enough to share some of her stamps and inks with me. Here is a peek at one of my stamped pages:

I am working on photographing all of my book from cover to cover, page by page, which I will share at the end of my 'travel diary', which I need to complete soon before I begin to add more collage and stamping to my book!

Fundraiser Donations
Nearly every year there is a fundraiser for the Presentation Center and I have donated something almost every year there has been a fundraiser, so this year was no exception...

I finished a book project to donate and began a few other book projects for donation. Here is a peek at my book offerings for the silent auction:

One of my Shabby Scrap Journals, completed in time to donate for a good cause! You can see more of this book by checking out this blog post...

I finally found the button I planned to use to adorn this book tie, just a day or two before leaving for the retreat!

A pair of recycled box books from one Cheez-It box, begun after watching an inspiring YouTube video - each book closes differently...

...One closes with an elastic band, the other closes with a tab utilized from the box top!

A little decorative button adds a little charm to the elastic band closure...

A very special book made just for the auction - a foldout book of photos from previous retreats featuring special locations in and around the Presentation Center...

There were many wonderful items for the auction and they brought in over $800 for the Presentation Center! I am glad that I helped to bring in some of that money...

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Soon, I'll be sharing one of the events at the retreat - the Artist Collaborative Painting! There is also Sunday Snippets coming, so be sure to stay tuned for more creative goodness!