The sacrament – and my process

I was away last weekend and didn’t work in my art journals, but did get plenty of art time to work on more Hokitika Gorge paintings. But I miss the freedom that comes with an art journal, where the process matters more than the outcome. I’m not sure I’ve ever documented my process for a layout like this, so will try to capture it.

 
Before I do though, this is another song by HIM, with Ville Valo singing. HIM disbanded a while back and Ville has moved on, but I still love their music. The lyrics, often quite dark, really speak to me. Villa reads a lot, including poetry and classics, and his writing frequently includes references to religion and Edgar Allan Poe’s works.

 
This layout was done in my small Dylusions journal, which means there’s no need to gesso the pages as they’re really strong and colours generally don’t bleed through.

 
Using ink blender foams I put down Dylusions paints in Polished jade, Lemon Zest and Vibrant turquoise. Using the same colours and the ink blenders, I stencilled using Dylusions Teardrops, Squares and Diamond in the Rough – I use each colour, and each stencil, in all three sections.

 
Once that was dry I used Distress Collage Medium to glue down the magazine cut-out, leaving a medium strip of gel medium around it. Next, I blend a shadow in once the gel is dry, using a walnut Pitt Big Brush Pen to outline the collage. The slickness of the gel means you can blend out the pen, which is India Ink, if you work quickly.

 
I write out my words – often song lyrics or my thoughts – and print double spaced. I insert a line at the top of the Word doc so I know how wide each line can be and adjust my font size to fit; for the small journal 10.5cm works well for me. I roughly cut out each line and use a foam blender and Black soot Distress Ink to ink the edges to take away the harshness of the white paper.

 
I put them aside and use Archival ink in black to stamp the title with Dylusions Dy’s alphabet stamp set and Stamper’s Anonymous Tim Holtz Tall Text stamps. While the lettering is drying I use Tombow glue to adhere the text strips; I’m not too fussy about lining them up, spacing etc. Once they’re down and the stamping ink is dry, I use a broad tip white Signo pigment ink pen to add highlights to the stamped letters.

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Body like a back road

Yes, it’s more of the music I love – “Body like a back road” by Sam Hunt. This morning I’ve been doing some of the boring bits needed to get paintings ready for exhibiting, like painting the edges white. As I work, Tony’s been reading a book, Faith’s been sleeping/barking, and we’ve been listening to some of our favorite music on iTunes. The sun is out, the washing is drying in the back porch and (almost) all is right with the world!

As I did this page I dropped the letter b from my Dy’s alphabet stamp set. We must have spent 20 minutes looking for it. I was beginning to think it had joined all the odd socks in the universe somewhere. But, no – it had somehow gone under the bottom drawer next to me. I have no idea how…

Dylusions. Small journal. Paint: Vanilla custard, Rose Quartz, Slate grey. Stencils: Diamond in the rough, Star struck, Holes. Stamps: Dy’s alphabet. Other: Tim Holtz Tall Text stamps, Pitt big brush pen, Archival ink. Distress ink, Distress collage medium.

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Beam me up

As is often the case, I’ve turned to a song to say all the things I can’t find the words for. I love writing letters & blogging, and I’m a fairly slow deep thinker. Yet, when it comes to emotions, I’m suddenly voiceless.

It’s the same for many addicts. Saying what’s in the deepest recesses of our hearts and minds is too hard, too scary, and makes us too vulnerable. On the flipside, that vulnerability is very healing. Through counselling, a lot of effort, and patient friends, I’ve healed a lot in the last year or so; healing that will help me maintain a healthy weight as I get further and further post weight loss surgery.

This page uses the lyrics from P!nk’s song ‘Beam me up’ and refers to my angel babies, and also to missing Mum and Dad.

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Picking up a dropped ball

My dear art friend Theresa has had to step back from running the Colour Me Positive FB group for a bit, due to internet issues. Rather than see it die, I’ve agreed to take over for a bit, putting up the weekly challenges, and generally watching over things. I don’t believe in always picking up the ball when someone else drops it, but this time felt right. There are plenty of opportunities I say no to. 

This week’s quote is from Frida Kahlo, one of my favourite artists, and an incredibly strong woman. I suggested of people want extra challenge they use hot Mexican orange and Kahlo style lush foliage. I used Dylusion’s paints and stencils for this one, and Distress Ink to edge the word strips.

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Acts of love

I know if I’m to stay as healthy as possible, with all the challenges I have, taking care of myself properly is an act of love. Hating my body won’t work. I need to eat well, exercise as much as my disability allows, sleep enough and take time out to rest.
Dylusions supplies: small journal. Paint: Black marble, Pomegranate seed, Cherry pie. Stencils: Small stars & Star struck. Stamps: Dy’s alphabet.
Other: Tim Holtz tall letter stamps, Pitt big brush pen, white gel pen, Distress ink, Ranger Distress collage medium.

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Music of my life

I have music on most of the time – at home, in my car, in my office… music keeps my brain busy so that I can concentrate on whatever I’m doing. I know that sounds odd – but it’s common with addicts, including food addicts like myself.

I listen to a wide range of music from opera to rock and hip hop. Favourites include HIM, Queen, P!nk, Meatloaf, Kiss and Nickelback. I often record the lyrics in my art journals. Why? Because my journals are about the things in my life and in my head – and music is a big part of that.

Dylusions – Paint: After midnight, Calypso teal, Mushy peas. Stencils: Diamonds in the rough, Shutters, Squares. Stamps: Dy’s alphabet. Other – Pitt big brush pen, Ranger collage medium, Distress black soot ink, black Archival ink, white gel pen.

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Fat stigma

This page tells the story but there’s also a lot of back story. Those of you who follow me know it already. My body has changed but my attitude hasn’t – all bodies deserve to be loved and respected regardless of weight, shape, sexuality and so on. Everyone deserves good medical care, free of bias. I am grateful to people like Izzy who are changing the medical landscape, one brave move at a time.

Dylusions – Paints: Bubblegum pink, Crushed grape, Lemon Zest. Stamps: Dy’s alphabet. Stencils: Stencil It, Sugar Lumps, Teardrops.
Other: Archival Ink, Distress ink, white gel pen, Pitt big brush pen, Ranger Collage medium.   fat stigma

Star Struck!

This week’s quote speaks to me – I’m a firm believer in the power of gratitude, and this is a timely reminder not to whine! I’ve got a friend who is struggling to make the changes they say they want. I’ve suggested more than once their lack of clarity, and gratitude, is getting in the way of the Universe providing for them.

The challenge was to use acrylic paint, and stars. I have plenty of star stencils from Tim Holtz & Dyan Reaveley, so used dark blue paint, silver and copper Nuvo mousse and Golden Fibre paste for the stars. The background is Dylusions paints because I love their intense colours.

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For the love of HIM

Some songs & bands are my ‘go to’ when I’m in my office working, or at home creating. HIM is one of those; I love Ville Valo’s gravely voice and the band’s dark lyrics speak to me. Sadly, they went their separate ways a couple of years ago.

I enjoy recording the music I love in my art journals and, for anyone that cares enough to read it, the lyrics tell you a lot about me and what goes in on my head.

As an aside, Ville has joined with Finnish band The Agents and they released a single late last year. I just tracked it down and I’m horrified; it’s in Finnish so I can’t understand the words but it sounds like Abba! I was hoping for more dark music that would speak to me, but no…

Dylusions — small journal. Paint: Mushy peas, Laidback lilac, Rose quartz. Stencils: Squares, Star struck, Spring flowers. Stamps: Dy’s alphabet. Other – Stamps: Tim Holtz Tall Text, Distress ink, white gel pen, Pitt Big Brush Marker, Distress collage medium.

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