Proudly Canadian

Proudly Canadian

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Getting creative in class with Christy Riopel!

Well, this is the time of year when life gets super busy.  Fall time means work conference, Thanksgiving, Halloween, staff meetings, Xmas planning at work, and overall just a busy time of year.  All that translates into, not a lot of time to play!  Free time is at a premium limited time and I need to take advantage of the opportunity when I can.  So, when I heard that Christy was coming back to town to do another one of her awesome classes, I was all over it!  A months notice allowed me to be sure to book that time off and luckily the cards played in my favor at work and I was able to take that weekend to attend her class.  I was ecstatic!  You have no idea!  Nothing makes me do the happy dance like getting inky and playing with amazingly creative people.  Fun fun fun...

The weekend consisted of learning a bunch of different techniques and resulted in a lot of pages getting done.  Yaaaa Baby!  I have always done my art journaling in the large Dylusions book but decided to purchase and use a smaller art journal this go around and I am so glad I did.  Though I love my Dylusions, the space on the page is huge and hard to fill sometimes, so unless you have a plan on how to utilize all that space it can be really intimidating and time consuming.  I would spent up to a full day, 7-8 hrs, on a page till I was satisfied with it.  A daunting task when time is so limited.  So to be able to do an art journal page in under a couple of hours in a smaller book makes it not so challenging to find some time in an evening or weekend where I can just sit down and create something start to finish instead of in intervals like in the larger journal book.  This in itself makes me a happy girl.  :)  This blog page is gonna be long and it's as much for me to remember the key things I learnt so I don't forget.  My memory isn't so good these days.  Gotta love mid age!  ;)

One of the first pages was using a stencil and gesso'ing thru it to create a resist.  Then spraying with your choice of color sprays to create a background.  Using a baby wipe, wiping the background to pick up the color from the gesso'd portions to reveal the stencil pattern.  I did the Prima circles stencil and Dylusion sprays in a 3 different tones of blue.  The result was a background that looked like planets and stars, and I took my inspiration from that.  Then we ripped different patterned papers to create a landscape type feel.  Chose our stamps and saying.  Finished with some gelato's for shading. And whallah....a page is born.

The  next page was fun using the Izinks.  Great!  More fun stuff to buy.  We gesso'd the page to start to seal the paper so we could move the ink around the page.  I picked out my colors I wanted to use (bought some more colors, oh boy!) and added a few drops to the paper.  Once all the color drops were down, sprayed with water and time to get inky with the fingers.  Using a tapping motion I moved the colors around till I was happy with the background.  LOVE!  Then drew the stems with a charcoal pencil and smudged it a bit for some shading.  Cut some leaves and glued them down with a matte medium and charcoaled around the edges.  I found a small petal flower and stamped it on top to create a flower, but I wasn't happy with the stamp I chose, too small.  So I took my black Izink and drew randomly, circles around the flower.  Yup, like that much better. Added my saying.  The little black dots were improvised after class cause I felt like the page was still lacking something and I wanted to use another new product I invested in called irRESISTable by Imagine.  Super cool!!!

I love love love this next one we did!  I need to find some BIG chipboard letters.  I think I used to have some but put them into a garage sale bin... not sure if it sold or not, going to have to go hunt and see if they still exist in my life!  NOTE to self.... do not sell or throw away anything cause you might come across a use for it some day!  It may take years but... you will find a use eventually! LOL By laying down the letters where we wanted them we could then splatter color around it leaving a white image.  After tracing the letters onto the page where the white space was we could then gesso inside the letters to white out any over/under splatter and I found any color smudged creating a cool effect.  Charcoal pencil was used to shade around the letter to create dimension.  I found my stamps I wanted to use and stamped them down.  (Now this page is not representative of how I feel about snow... LOL)  I used my water brush and some of the same color Dylusion sprays and did a light color wash over the snowflakes and the penquins toques.  Then we created a border around the word to frame it in.  This page is so darn cute!

Ok, now I have to admit I altered this page a bit.  Sorry Christy.  The effect was really cool.  I liked the technique we learnt but I felt it was too bulky for my book... so when I got home I changed it.  We had taken toilet paper rolls and flattened them, cut strips and glued them down to create a pattern that we wanted.  I did a wheat pattern cause it reminded me of my Dad.  He was a farmer and when he passed we placed wheat sprigs on his casket.  So this page is for him.  Once the strips were glued down we gesso'd the entire page and the rolls and then sprayed the page and let it dry.  It looked really cool!  But I think I cut the strips too thick and I couldn't close my book properly and it made it harder to work on the backside of the pages because of the thickness.  Soooooo... when I got home from my weekend, I took my Exacto knife and started to carefully remove the toilet paper roll strips from the page.  The paper tore in some places were the glue pulled off exposing white paper that wasn't gesso'd and in other places it left glue on the paper.  Kinda cool!  I grabbed my matte medium and sealed over top to seal in the rough tears and exposed paper.  Then I took my Fabre Castel india ink pen in a brown and ran around the wheat buds and smudged with my finger to soften the effect.  I love love love how it ended up looking!  So the toilet paper roll still served a purpose and created a whole different effect for me and my page that I am thrilled with!  I added some stamps and a saying.  The saying is multi toned because it tells me that even when you think you messed up like I did on this page, something wonderful can happen, as well as, this page being about my Dad, he guided me from above to not give up and create something wonderful.  Thanks Dad!

Warning!!!  In this next technique we learnt, paper towels were harmed in the making of this page! LOL  I love this technique and all I could think was oh great,,, another reason to hoard what I would normally throw away.  I need a bigger craft house.  LOL   So, lets see if I can remember everything I need to remember.  The idea is to use that roll of colored paper towel with all that pattern from blotted off stencils and stuff and transfer it to the paper.  So, you take the paper towel and separate it into a single ply and lay it down on a unprepped page.  Take the matte medium and brush on the page and lay the towel on top and then brush more medium over top to transfer the color thru onto the page.  Do NOT let the medium dry and once the color has started to transfer lift the paper towel off the page and the pattern and color has transferred with the texture from the paper towel onto the paper.  Super cool!  Then the idea was to stamp on an image with a lot of white space onto the page and gesso inside the lines to mute the colors and semi white out the inner ground.  Some of the pattern and color will shine thru and create this really neat effect.  A charcoal pencil was used to create crisp lines and smudging again.  Then we used gelatos or paint to created shading around the images.  When I got home I wasn't thrilled with where I stamped my flowers and felt it left a lopsided feel to the head and a disconnect on the opposite side.  So I created a few more mini florals and painted and gesso'd to try to recreate a similar effect, cut them out and using dimensional glue dots added them where I wanted them.  Yup, happier now!  :)

More pages to show and techniques that I need to remind myself of... so I'm going to go to a part 2 and post a second blog page on all I learnt.  Once I'm done my blog pages, I think it's time to get inky and put some of these techniques into practice on my own.  :)  

To all my Canadian friends, I am thankful for the men and women who served, sacrificed and gave us the freedom to be able to live such full lives.  This Remembrance Day, is a day to be proud of those who served to keep us FREE.

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