Sunday, December 30, 2012

Goodbye 2012


Looking back on this year, I've accomplished most of the small goals I set for myself. I got my driver's license, my first car, and a more convenient work schedule. I painted a bunch of things and made a bunch of journals. My new website went up, my pricing evolved and I was invited to some fun, local craft fairs. I fell in love with a bunch of new art supplies!

My new year resolution is to participate into more Surrey Arts Council events; one cannot create in a vacuum, right? This will be super difficult since I am such an introvert who thinks the day ends at 5pm, haha. Hopefully my Rainlendar will help me out with this one.

What about you? Do you make resolutions every year? Do you actually keep them?

Friday, December 28, 2012

Art Journal Page - 12/28/12

This took a while to put together! I don't have a large enough memory card to record more than five minutes of video at a time! The ratio is special in some way, but eventually I'll figure it out :3

Playing with the Gelli Arts plate in my journal!

Music: "Whiskey on the Mississippi" & "Airport Lounge" by Kevin MacLeod

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Playing with Gelli Arts Monoprint Plate


Welp, I finally got to open the box and try out the Gelli Arts goo plate! 

Did you ever get to do the linoleum cutting prints in high school? This is kind of like that except no carving or special tools are required! It's actually just a rectangular jelly on which you spread fluid acrylic paint. Then you put the paper over top and it transfers onto the paper.

Why don't you just paint directly onto the paper, you ask?

I don't know. But this way is fun too :3

It would be difficult to describe how to use one of these with words, but Roben-Marie has put together a fantastic video tutorial which answers all of the questions!


At first I had no idea what I was doing and started to have doubts. I don't have lots of cool masks or stencils so I thought I was simply out of luck. But the more layers I added, the more fun it became.

I used bubblewrap, string, circles of paper, a stamp, a regular paintbrush and some plastic canvas I had laying around.


I'm trying to stick with watercolour in my current journal, so I don't know how often I'll get to use this. Next journal batch, it will make some pretty interesting covers, I think! Maybe some clever greeting cards, too.


For such a cool toy that is quickly growing in popularity, the price is actually pretty reasonable. Part of the reason might be because it doesn't actually include a brayer in the package. This was the only thing that disappointed me. Without the brayer, it isn't truly "ready to use".

I suppose you could paint it on with a brush, or perhaps they expected this to only be popular among experienced printmakers who already have the tools... In any case, I ran down to the Michaels with a coupon and bought the simplest brayer I could find.

People are coming up with some pretty cool ideas.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Tiger Lily Painting


My second application of watercolours actually started to look really lovely. The canvas is so absorbant that it was very difficult to achieve a "dripping" look as the paint didn't want to follow the water away. I wouldn't particularly recommend this...


Continuing around the edges! :3

I love love love the look of the colours, but definitely couldn't do any watercolour techniques on this! I couldn't even paint with details so I drew some tiger lilies using a charcoal pencil and some white conte...


Half of these "drips" are just painted lines.


Fun little experiment, though not terribly successful. Maybe I will keep working on the lilies. My grandparents grew tiger lilies in their garden! It's hard to believe that all of those plants were twenty years old the last time I saw them, and now they are probably bulldozed and built over...

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Adventures with Raw Canvas


When I was at the store picking out a wooden panel, I caught sight of some stretched raw canvases. I thought they were really beautiful so I bought a small 8x10" one to play with. 


So... not really knowing what these raw canvases are meant for, I wanted to find out if one could throw watercolours onto it.

So far, the answer is... no. Not really. The colour of the canvas is nowhere near as bright as a piece of paper, so much of the colour is lost. 

The rough surface is probably doing a number on my brushes, but that's okay because my brushes are pretty old and "basic" anyway :3


But the way they soaked together on the canvas was kind of fun, so I'm going to keep playing with this to see if I can get anything good to happen. 

Bonus Yummies: 
I... I totally caved and upgraded to a super basic DSLR today. I'M SO EXCITED. It's the Canon Rebel T3 (like I said, super basic) and I'm sure I'm going to break it. Assuming I ever figure out how to use it.

I got stuck on the first page on the instructions on how to attach the strap. Seriously. I'm doomed.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Wallpaper for the New Year


It is so strange to think that this time last year, I dreaded the new year. Dreaded, dreaded, dreaded.

December is a procrastinator's dream! There are so many wonderful excuses why not to do something: busy time at work, vacation, businesses are closed for the holidays, school's out, what-have-you. So last year I knew that when January 1 came about, I would have to get my driver's license and get my wisdom teeth out.

Worst anticipation ever.

But not this year. I don't have any concrete plans for next year, and maybe that's why I've been having difficulty falling asleep lately...


Nevertheless, I am kind of excited to see what 2013 will bring! I decided to freshen up my desktop background using all of the same resources I used last time, but in a slightly different way. I used the butterflies from my Inner Turmoil painting.

My Rainlendar2 has proven itself as useful as I was hoping it would be!


I'd love to put these wallpapers up for download but that would be against the TOU for some of these resources, unfortunately :(

Lauren Harrison

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


I've been saving this one for a while, as it was a special gift!


 I wanted to try painting on wooden supports because I hear nothing but good things about them. The wood is so pretty that I couldn't cover it all. So the bottom half is partially untouched. Love love love it!


I traced the stencil pattern with Liquid Pearls. The wood panel has deep sides like a gallery canvas, and I "wrapped" the image around the sides. Unfortunately I didn't take a photo of that part.


I will probably use these panels again :)

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Art Journal Page - 12/15/12

I know lots of people seemed to like it, but I took the Clover journal from my shop for personal use :P

Clover and Buttons were from the first journal batch way back then, though I sort of wish I'd chosen Buttons! I like that one. It has a really nice texture on the front, and a few pages inside that were only half-sized. Next time.

Maybe the next future batch of journals should all include different sized pages as an experiment? I think they're kind of neat.

Well anyway, this first page above was inspired by some pretty, sparkly little faux leaves I used as a holiday decoration. I'm hoping to use more watercolours in this journal. On top of watercolours I used some metallic craft paint and a little gel medium!

Music: "Airport Lounge" Kevin Macleod

Friday, December 14, 2012

Ambrosia's Polaroid Magnets


I saw a photo on Pinterest of these homemade Polaroid magnets and thought they were super cute! So I tried it out. Could make a nice little hostess gift for any holiday parties coming up...


It's actually more challenging than it looks (they look a bit better in the photos than in my hand). Trying to get good edges with bookboard and combining glue and printer paper are some tricky things to do.


I haven't decided yet if I'm going to glaze all of them (the glaze only seems to exacerbate imperfections in the paper/glue step) but the magnets were so super easy to attach. I used the Elmer's magnet strips and they're actually not too bad. The adhesive actually sticks! A bit stronger than the thin magnet cards you get from businesses, which is good. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Goddess Leonie's Business Workbook 2013

After some pondering, I downloaded Leonie's 2013 Business Workbook. She has a "Life" version as well which is probably lots of good fun.


It's an e-book that you print yourself, but my elderly home printer isn't useful for colour printing.  I had an unused cartridge full of colour ink so I printed some pages anyway! I imagine these pages would look quite lovely if printed professionally.


I'm excited to answer the tough questions! The website boasts 80 pages, but I think that must include the calendar. There were about 20 pages that I printed out which contained the workable questions. These are questions about goals, visions, income, profit, accomplishments and light problem solving. They look good!


I love how she encourages us to really OWN our minor accomplishments. I would be very interested to fill out these booklets every year to really see how each year improves in small ways!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Mini Painting - 12/9/12


I haven't done a mini painting in a while and I was inspired by some sketchy-style watercolours.


I have old high school sketchbooks full of drawings like this, ha! This basic use of light layers on a plain background sort of emphasizes what I love about watercolour: it is fearless and forgiveable and effortlessly beautiful.


Available here. 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Free to Be


"Trapped in a small cage with our creativity, we all wish we could benefit more from our passions. Some succeed while others dont. But all want the same thing - to be free just to be ourselves."

Halfway through I decided to switch to pencil crayon. I don't really use them but I love the look of the metallic copper pencil on the cage, so I'm glad I did!

There are a few more pictures here.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Birth of an Idea


I spend too much time on the internet. But of course I do. There is an endless supply of colours, images, tutorials, opportunities, conversations, videos and ideas

Inspiration usually comes from the outside. You know that saying: "Nothing can be created in a vacuum," or some variation of the same. A clever photo on Pinterest pulls at my heartstrings, while drama is unfolding on an Etsy forum thread.

Just as I am about to put the laptop aside and tidy up, an image pops into my mind. The nearest item is a cheap notebook that was left behind in a school locker. I scribble the image (called a "thumbnail") with messy, black lines under some old driving directions. It's usually the scribbled thumbnails I appreciate the most.


There is usually some procrastination between the two-second sketch and the actual painting. There is just so much potential in the scribbles that I am too afraid to start painting. Sometimes it turns into a good idea, and sometimes it doesn't. 

I paint in flat blocks of colour, obscurring details to create an ugly, blurry image at first. And then... who knows what will happen?

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Journal Page 12/2/12

That's it, that's all for the White Rose journal. Here's the last page where I cleaned off my stencil a few times. It's like having a pre-made background!

The next journal I'm using is going to be the Green Clovers one unless something else takes my fancy :3

Friday, November 30, 2012

Journal Post 11/30/12


Here is a way to use a page in the back of the journal where I test or clean off stencils (I got a new one! I think it's a chain link fence, and it's very cool).

Also, a colour I don't use often - black!


I drew orange swirls with a watercolour crayon and scribbled them into poppies with a pen. I can still see the pattern of the stencils right through them.


The black is another watercolour crayon. I actually don't have black in my regular watercolour set. It DOES have white though, which I never use. I'm sure one day I will discover why there is a white watercolour pan, what it's used for, and that it's amazing. Or something. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Liquid Pearls


There is a set of these "pearls" at Michaels which piqued my curiosity, but were priced a little too high for me (like most scrapbooking toys). I found some single bottles and decided to splurge on one.


This one works way better than the 3D paint I bought at the dollar store. This one does seem to hold its shape much better (though it does shrink a bit after drying). It takes sooo long to dry, that even after 8 hours the tops got a little dented after closing my journal page.


It makes for some fun detail work, though. :3

Monday, November 26, 2012

Refresh Your Surroundings


For a while, this blog layout was feeling a bit "dark" so I finally came around to redecorate. Now it looks a bit more like my website, and consistency is good.

PLUS! It's almost winter where I live. It's already dark by 5pm most days, and it really puts a damper on my spirits. Who wants to go out or do errands when it's dark?

Not me. I'm a day bird. My apartment walls are bright yellow. I paint butterflies and flowers all winter long to remind me of nicer, drier days. Keeping an art journal is also a source of comfort; there's nothing like a little colour therapy!

So this winter, why not take 20% off of anything in my shop with this coupon code: WINTER2012

What do you do to fend off the winter blahs?

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Journal post 11/24/12


I haven't taken much advantage of the absorbant surface of the pages; these are the last few layouts of the book where I clean off the stencils and they end up sticking together and tearing. So I'm using up more of the many many many scraps of things hanging around. I love the colour scheme, though.




Thursday, November 22, 2012

Inner Turmoil


"Negative thoughts, grudges, unfinished business planted in our hearts and suppressed there. They grow and mature and eat away at the flesh until there is nothing left, when they suddenly burst forth and expose their wrath to unsuspecting witnesses."


Available Here.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

When You Feel Flightless


This weekend, before I left for day two of A Piece of Work, a Varied Thrush hit our window. At first, I thought the sound was our cat Milo's paw hitting the window, as he happened to be looking through the glass and naturally tried to catch it. When I looked outside to see what was the matter, I expected it to be a windblown leaf, not a bird frozen in shock!


It seemed to be in good shape (just a little woozy), so I paused to marvel at its pretty colours. It sat in the dry bucket with an old towel for nearly an hour before taking off.

I thought about the bird periodically throughout the day, so naturally I was drawn to Shannon's little paintings she'd brought to the show that morning. 


We made a trade!

I chose this particular one because it really is terrifying to take a chance and fail. And there is a lot of failure, don't get me wrong.

A lot.

Of failure. 

But I think once you fall down a few times, jumping just doesn't seem as scary as it once did. There will be bruises, and embarrassment... but there is also exhilaration!

That's one of the nice things about collecting art, in that it is an in-your-face reminder of something lovely. When I look at this painting, I will remember the pretty bird that visited us that morning. I will remember all of the people I met at the show and all of the lovely things they all said. And I will remember it everyday, instead of only on the odd chance I flip through my scrapbook. 

This is good, because when I'm not thinking about this potential, I do feel a bit flightless. I hope that this will continue to remind me of things that truly matter :3

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Post Fair Bliss


Ohhhhhhh I am floating on cloud 9 right now! I am resting up from the weekend show in White Rock which was a ton of fun! While there was not much profit to be had from this craft fair, I got to meet up and chat with some cool people!


Finally got to meet Violette Clark in person, and traded goods with Shannon Ganshorn. I got to taste some pretty amazing wine vinegars (I think I have more wine vinegars now than actual wine - oop!).


And now I'm totally poooooped and relaxing on the couch with a hot meal (after a day of nibbling on dry crackers) and a yummy iced mocha.