About 4 years ago I did a few sessions of counselling to get my head around some stuff. We also worked on me sleeping better, without huge success. We identified three things I wanted to achieve in the counselling; she said 3 is about the max you can do at any one time. One of the words we settled on was content; not content as in “no growth needed” but content to let the process work and accept life as it happens. There were a lot of very good reasons why that was needed.
And, full circle, the same thing applies now. There’s a lot of change happening in my life, and I can’t control much of it. It’s important I feel content with life regardless.
I’m inspired by Claire Stead‘s art and have just got her new release from Funky Fossil through Natalie May Scrapbooking in Australia. I got some clear text stamps and her collage paper. I was working in my 6×6 Dina Wakley kraft journal, one of my favs, this morning and flicked through the collage paper book and there it was — “I am content”. The universe wants me to know it will be ok!
All crafters know this story … buy something you love – paper, paint, ephemera – and it’s so good you don’t use it, you just stash it away. I bought a very expensive tube of paint once and when I finally decided to use it the paint had gone hard in the tube.
Yesterday the weather was miserable and, in some ways, so was I. I decided to haul out the drawer I keep my general supplies in. Things like Stamperia rice paper, Tim Holtz paper dolls, and so on and just play.
I did a bunch of pages using up things I love, while I still love them. Now I have space for more supplies when I see something I like. If you’ve got things tucked away that are “too good to use” why not treat yourself by pulling them out of your stash and using them? You’re worth it. Here are some of yesterday’s pages.
I’ve done a 100 day project before; it’s a good way of doing a deep dive into a topic. This year I decided to improve my drawing skills with the aim of being able to draw faces in my art journals. I signed up for Dina Wakley’s Facing the facts class at https://dinawakley.com/store/.
I drew a face at the beginning of the journal so I can look back at where I started. When I did an Advanced Diploma of Creativity (Honours) over 4 years by distance with The Learning Connection we did some drawing, and I improved, but didn’t keep it up. It’s definitely a skill that needs constant use, for me anyway.
I’m on day 10 and already seeing an improvement and feel able to start making the faces a bit more my own. It’ll be interested to see what I’m achieving at day 100.
My art practice runs deeply through my life, and sometimes cracks appear. Life gets in the way, and my art practice takes a lower priority for a time. From the outside that probably looks like a wee crack on the surface and no big deal. But actually those shallow cracks run deep – art is vital to my life and it’s important I always find – make – time to move my hands.
Since Tony moved into the rest home I’ve found less time for my art. At first glance I should have more time, not less – but that’s not how it works. By the time I work, and visit him 4 weeknights out of 5, then bring him home at the weekend, time is precious. When he was at home, sure things were difficult, but I sat at my art desk while he slept the days away.
Over the last few days I’ve made a concerted effort to do a bit more art and it feels good to be moving my hands. I need to prioritise my art time better! These pages are all in my Dina Wakley journals.
This multi-page spread in my Dina Wakley journal was inspired by Niamh Baly. I’m an avid follower and often find myself inspired by her, but this was a more direct inspiration than normal. Tony’s had a few rough days – that is another day’s post – so I spent a lot of today working on this while he slept in the lazyboy behind me. I used Dina Wakley paint, stamps, printed tissue and a page from her Collage Collective book. The quote is one I saw on FB that seemed appropriate, given all the support we’re getting at the moment. I’m pleased with how this turned out and glad I put the time into it.
There’s nothing like a little play time in my journals to restore my equilibrium! This layout is in my small Dylusions journal and used the Dina Wakley words collage tissue, and Dylusions paints and collage collections.
One of the Dina Wakley art tutorial videos I watched recently suggested making a reference file of all your Dina Wakley paints, showing the analogous (neighboring) colours and the opposite or near opposite colours. It’s a fun exercise and a good way of finding new colour combinations to use in your artwork. I bought a new notebook and worked my way through each paint in my collection, adding the analogous colours from her colour wheel, then using pieces from the Collage Collective to glue on small accents from opposite on the colour wheel. I found some combinations I absolutely love! Here’s a sample of the pages I’ve made.
While I’ve been off work recuperating, I’ve watched hours and hours of art tutorial videos by Dyan Reaveley, Dina Wakley, Niamh Baly and Tim Holtz. Sometimes I learn new techniques, or new ways to use existing products, other times I’m reminded of things I used to do. It’s always good to find new ways to use existing products. And, yes, I’ve bought quite a lot of new stuff too 😉
I’d had one of Dina Wakley’s small white journals before and loved it, so bought another one recently so I could practice what I was seeing in her art videos in an accessible format. I’ve been playing with creating abstract figures using her acrylic gloss spray, different ways of creating backgrounds including using her black gesso, and experimenting with colour combinations. I’ve found the wee abstract figures are great for playing with colour combinations and think this journal is going to be quite full of these quirky characters!
Last week had its ups and downs. The downs I’m not documenting… The ups included an amazing fishing trip for Tony, something that was on his very short bucket list.
Tomorrow we’re seeing the respiratory specialist, Dr Hicks, to get the details of his latest lung MRI, to confirm a few things. We’re supposed to see the Hospice Dr to look at his meds, but this might not happen due to COVID19 level 2 – Breeda is trying to sort it for us. Tied into that is a meeting with the Hospice wound nurse to have a look at the ulcer on his foot.
I continue to art out all the feelings. I’m so grateful for my art journals as I’ve been feeling a bit unwell, and my temper starts to fray far too easily. I’ve been playing on my huge Dina Wakley mixed media journal.
I bought a small 6×6 Dina Wakley journal partway through the year. I love the thick white watercolour pages, and will certainly buy another at some stage. The smaller format is good to work in when time is short too. I’ve only got a couple of pages left in it, so thought I’d share what I’ve been doing.