Monday, 1 February 2016

Art journaling for a new year.

Depending on where you live in the world, January can be a dreary old month. Here in the north of England it has been grey, wet, blustery, stormy, and so, so dark. But daylight hours are beginning to increase little-by-little so there is hope on the horizon. The lack of light really gets to me every year and can me feel quite gloomy :-(

So, to counteract that, at my latest art journaling class with the fabulous regulars (at Art from the Heart, UK) I decided that we would focus on more positive things and think about growth and new beginnings. Each time in this regular class I try and do something new; no point going to a class each month and doing the same old, same old. You don't have to *like* all the new things that you try but the idea is that you might learn something that you can add to your regular style. This time we tried building up a background with lots of random layers (you can see some stamping showing through my top painted layers) to add a little history to the page. And from there we let the page grow organically, starting in one corner and taking it from there. We added doodled flowers and lot of scribbly writing.

Initially we worked on a tag (not so scary!) and added it to a page 'cos it just looks so nice with all that white space!

And then we worked on full sized pages:

Roll on spring!

Thursday, 28 January 2016

More finishing off ...

Every now and then I go back and try to finish off all the half done incomplete pages in my journals. It is an on-going battle because as I am completing some pages I will be simultaneously creating more half done pages!

This is a page in my Midori Travellers notebook (LOVE my planners!) I love that this page sits next to a page of boring- to-do lists or maybe a shopping list!

I started this back in August last year but just added a bit more ... as you do ...

Now I need to go and finish off of the other half finished projects I've got lying around the house. *sigh* it's never ending ...!

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Altered Spoon Doll!

Recently Mr Crane and I went for a lovely cup of tea in a local cafe, where there happened to be uber cute wooden spoons on the table. He saw wooden spoons but I saw doll potential.

So, I set to, gessoing, painting, and adding glitter to make this little altered doll. And she is really quite little - only 15 cm head to toe.

Of course she is wearing very fetching red glittery underwear LOL! 

All several other spoons just 'fell' into my handbag ;-)

Thursday, 21 January 2016

Art journaling catch up!

It may look as though I haven't been very busy on the art front during January, but actually I have been very busy behind the scenes, prepping classes, making samples etc .... Nothing I can really share at the moment. Yesterday, as I was supposed to be doing yukky paperwork, I got distracted and decided to finish off some pages in my art journals that had been laying around unloved for a little while. It's amazing how these things can happen when you are supposed to be doing something much less interesting!

This is a page I started a few months ago during one of my regular art journaling classes at Art from the Heart (UK). It's in my square black Dylusions journal - I love how the black page gives a more grungy feel.

I wrote the scribbly words with a dip pen, dipped into DecoArt Media Mister in Carbon Black. This works really well as a writing ink. Just don't tip the bottle over once you have removed the nozzle!!

The images were by one of my favourites - Nancy, at Crowabout Studio B at Mischief Circus (link above). Love these images!

Before I go, you may have seen that I will be teaching at The Misistry of Mixology event in April this year, alongside the fabulous Andy Skinner. I'm so so excited about this! It's is sponsored by DecoArt and Tando Creative and promises to be a fabulous event! Bookings will begin on Monday but places are limited ...... All details can be found here. Hope to see you there!

Byeee for now! Have a great day. Brrrr - minus 4 here today - keep warm!

Sunday, 3 January 2016

Happy New Year!

Well, what a year 2015 was! I think it's time for a round up of the last 12 months ...

Last new year I decided I wasn't going to make any new year's resolutions as I never manage to keep them anyway. Instead I decided to jot down good and positive things that happened throughout the year and save it until the following new year to open. I even managed not to peek all year! 

Opening it all out to read was actually quite exciting, and also very surprising. It is amazing just how much stuff we forget, or don't actually realise happened in the last year. Sometimes things seem like they happened ages ago, and yet it was all in the last 12 months.

If you haven't done this before, I really recommend it. It's very quick to do and easy to keep on top of, and a lovely thing to look forward to next new year.

2015 was the year that I had my first ever stamps published for Stampotique Originals. I can't even begin to tell you how exciting it is to see your art in rubber! One of the best things was seeing what the fabulously talented Design Team came up with. You can see their lovely art *here*

Here's a few of my makes from during the last year using my own stamps:

Of course I have always had a bit of a soft spot for Stampotique Originals and use them often in my journal pages:

Throughout the year I have continued to mess about in my journal, and sometimes just on recycled card (can't resist an old cereal box!):

I started to make art in the new Dylusions black journal which surprisingly makes your paints appear really bright!

  An angel for Christmas:

And something new for me - painting mandalas with my *new* DecoArt fluid acrylics.  Love!

My lovely friend Mell ALWAYS manages to inspire me and get me hooked on new things. For my birthday back in July she gave me a lovely planner which set me off on a new creative direction. Love planners! And they are so portable, and kept me well occupied during family holidays and travels during the summer months:

Throughout the year I have continued to teach art at various locations, and I am always very grateful for the wonderful enthusiastic response I receive. It is always a great honour and pleasure to share this artistic journey, and I'm looking forward to lots more classes during 2016. You can see all the details *here* And if you are heading to the Stitches Trade Show in February at the NEC, Birmingham, you might just see me there!

The Artistic Stamper, Kent

Frodsham, Cheshire

Art from the Heart, Harrogate UK

The Stamp Attic, Oxford

It's Crafting Time, Cambridge

Rossendale, Lancs

I also did a bit more filming of classes. I filmed my new Marvelous Miniatures class, and also my class for the awesome Wanderlust. Eeks! Very happy to be a part of this!

And there were a few things I wanted to try in 2015 ... 

1   Bookbinding ... yes, I took a workshop and learned how to bind books! Still more to learn but at least I made a start.

2   I wanted to make art on a bigger scale ... no, I failed miserably on this. Still there's always another year. 

3   I wanted to learn how to crochet ... Yes, I did this! Although I have been a knitter all my life I wanted to crochet, but more specifically I wanted to crochet blankets from the Attic 24 blog. I got myself a book, I looked on you tube and I did it :-) 
(Thanks to my friends - Wendy, Gez, and Angie for inspiring me and cheering me on!)

Over Christmas and New Year I tend to shut down and hibernate, and focus on family, as family time is so so precious. My youngest turned 13 this summer so now I have TWO teenagers in the house (yikes!) This has made me even more aware of how quickly time flies, and the importance of spending time with each other (before they flee the nest ... I can hardly even think about that). 

But now, as we enter the new year it feels like it's time to come out of hiding and get going again. 

I wish you all a fabulous 2016 filled with love, happy times and good health. And colour. Everyone needs lots of colour in their life ;-)