I'm travelling into a new way of working, a new country, a new language, and a new hobby which I'm passionate about. Come with me for some of the journey...

Friday, 14 June 2019

Doodling with watercolour

Hello all, and thank you so much for your lovely comments on my Holding On, Letting Go journal.

After that mammoth post, I'm here with something much shorter today.

I'm just sharing a couple of watercolour/doodling pages inspired by CeeCee Creations on youtube - particularly this video about being creatively stuck.

It's not so much that I'm stuck at the moment as that I'm slightly flooded with possibilities, and so don't really know where to start with things I'd like to try.

And then just as I get really fired up and ready to play, I realise I have some sort of deadline (not always crafting) that needs meeting and it all slips away again.

But with these pages I just played with CeeCee's combination of watercolour brushwork and pen doodling.

Actually it's mostly brushwork doodling on these pages, with a very fine brush, and the odd bit of white pen highlighting later.

I was also keen to try out some new handmade watercolours ordered from Jazper Stardust on Etsy.

They're really beautiful...

... lovely shades with some really nice granulation in some pigments, and great for mixing.

I stuck with my favoured organic and nature motifs for the most part.

I'm not as pattern-oriented as CeeCee is.  To be honest, I was mostly just enjoying the colours.

And then I did a larger page flower doodle, also borrowing inspiration from some of her doodled flower videos.

These are all in a 6 x 8 inch watercolour sketchbook, by the way.

I think it's pretty, and I did enjoy doodling with the pens, but I'm not sure the end result is quite my thing.

But that might just be because I strayed into the pink and purple zone, so it just doesn't feel like home!

But it's always good to try stuff out and see where it takes you...

... and there's always something to be learned along the way.

I hope you've enjoyed my light-hearted doodling- it's nice to create without an end product in mind.

I hope you find some time for light-hearted creativity this weekend, and I'll see you again soon.

To practise any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow.  So do it.
Kurt Vonnegut

I'd like to play along with the June Watercolour Challenge over at Happy Little Stampers

Friday, 7 June 2019

Holding on, letting go

Hello all!  It's a pretty grim, grey June so far, and I seem to be a little under the weather too (post-show doldrums).

It probably shows in today's creation!

I took part in the free three day art-journalling challenge hosted by the lovely and brilliant Kasia of Everything Art a couple of weekends ago.

In just a few minutes of playtime a day, we created a whole little book of art journal pages, cover and all, and I'm sharing it here today.

I'm not going to give away everything we did, that wouldn't be fair to Kasia.  I'm mostly just going to turn the pages for you., with a couple of close ups of each of them. 

There were challenges along the way, not least having to make our own marks.

With each instruction, Kasia's urging was not to think but to do.

That's probably how we managed to get so much done!  This was the end of day one - a six minute video class, and probably fifteen minutes at the craft table.

I made colour choices which suited my mood and preferences.

And I went rogue with a couple of instructions in various ways... just to keep it feeling like me.

For instance, rather than marker pens, I used my much loved dip pen with some ink.

Rather than collaging from magazines (which are not something I ever have around), I went another way with my paper scraps.

And I ended up having to do rather more with my cover than was instructed or than I'd intended...

... partly because it ended up falling apart rather more than I wanted...

... but also because it was originally a bright red colour (not me, as you know).  And when I gesso'd it, it turned pink.

And despite sealing it with matte medium, the red kept on seeping through. 

So in the end, I had to take fairly drastic measures and cover it with some papers...

... before painting it the colour I actually wanted it to be (the lovely Smalt Blue acrylic paint by Golden).

On the inside pages are words drawn from our moods over those three days of creativity.

There are little pen sketches of faces and figures.

Sometimes they're almost hidden amongst everything else that's going on.

But I really like how they suddenly come into focus as you look at a page...

... even though you maybe haven't noticed them at first.

They are really rapid sketches, but I think that speed can sometimes capture something...

... which long planning and painstaking execution misses out on.

I couldn't resist adding some wildflower stamping.

And given I'd yielded to black ink for the sketches and the writing...

(the brown ink didn't really show up well enough against the backgrounds when I tried)

... I allowed myself my favourite brown inks for the stamping.

I would estimate the total time I spent on this as only just over an hour, maybe 70 - 75 minutes...

... and that's including the three six-minute video classes each day.

So that pretty much deals with the age-old complaint of not having enough time! 

But you do have to have a little bit of mojo around to get you going.

 (Or lots of prompts to follow - thank you Kasia!)

Otherwise, no matter how much time you have...

... the stuff which turns up in front of you isn't going to make you happy!

It's messier than lots of my usual work, but it's a messiness that I'm often trying to capture.

It has a freedom which I like to aim at, and only sometimes achieve.

It's probably more often achieved on things I've not even shared on the blog...

... because they feel more personal and more vulnerable somehow.

The forward momentum of doing rather than thinking means that, in a very healthy way, you're less in control.

I think these pages probably tap into something close to my centre, unmediated.

It's not as orderly inside as one might hope, clearly!  But then I knew that, because I live in here.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of my inner workings laid bare.  And I hope you can find just a few minutes this weekend to be creative.

Who knows, if you don't think too hard, all sorts of things might work their way up from the depths?!  Happy crafting all!

If everything seems under control, you're not going fast enough.
Mario Andretti

With plenty of my own mark-making, some of it geometric, some of it not, I'd like to play along at Try It On Tuesday where they want us to Make a Mark 
And at Art Journal Journey, Halle's theme is Words To Live By - there's lots of handwritten text here, over multiple pages, from those individual words to the hidden scribbles expanding on some of those thoughts
I haven't had a chance to play along since lack of time forced me to step down from the design team at Mini Album Makers, so I'd love to join in with their June challenge this month