Archive for February, 2014

It did its job for me!
Click on it and enlarge if you want to see any detail.


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Are We There Yet?

No matter what I added to this card, the tall guy in red still dominated this image.
are we there yet

All the collage elements are from the same recent issue of The Economist, which sets a high standard for prose (especially obituaries), photography, and other graphics. No, not quite right: A couple tidbits are from an advertising flyer.

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Big Egos

I’m wrestling with some big egos right now. One of them is mine. Visual journaling is a good place to get it all out. I’d like that rooster to look meaner. Maybe a white sharpie paint pen will do it. I’ve been wanting a white paint pen.
Paint on paper, paint on bubble wrap, hand lettering, collaged lettering and images, marker, multicolor Crayola (three crayon colors in each crayon). Waiting on the work table: huge letters spelling out “Explode” and markers for adding smaller-scale writing.

The image on the right is a volcano. It has been pasted in upside down. Look twice before you burnish down a well-pasted collage element.

A friend shared a wisdom passage with me. Paraphrased: Don’t shy away from difficulties, for the gods may not send such an opportunity again.

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The next themed swap I am working on involves grids. Serendipity and planning meet and marry in paper weaving. grid1
I used tape to hold down the loose edges and reduce the risk of catastrophic tearing in the mail. The translucent tape doubles the number of tones on the surface.

Out of curiosity I made a sepia version of the same card digitally. You can tell I really like brown. Rough-textured edges show if you click on the image to enlarge it.

This grid is based on paper from a teacher’s grading book. Nothing is woven. You can hold it one way for meaningful text or, if the text distracts from the experience, you can turn it upside down for pure pattern.

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So …. I was surprised when I coated a journal-page-in-process with matte medium, and all the writing done with gel pens smeared. It’s readable, it’s an effect, but it’s not what I had in mind. I’m looking for comments from others who have had this experience and found a workaround or can lend me some wisdom of some other kind. Besides “don’t do that,” which I’ve figured out.storm-diary-snippet
I have to amend the observation. The dark gray gel pen did not smear, while the bright blue one did. The gray was a Souffle pen, I think. More research is called for, that’ll be fun, though smeary.

UPDATE: Another artist observed in a post that sometimes you need to lay down a layer of fixative before adding gesso or acrylic medium. Now this starts to sound like a lot of smelly stuff … but I do have two cans of fixative.

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They won’t be too fancy; just for fun. Here is the first one. I’ve forgotten how to do a sophisticated erasure job in PaintShop Pro, so the upper left is a little messy in the electronic rendition, but the original is fine.

Miscellaneous paper cutouts, Artstix, and gel pens. I really really like using gel pens: They will write on anything.

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I won’t really know what a “visual journal” is until I have made one for a while. There are fascinating books and blogs on the subject. They suggest that a visual or art journal can be anything you want it to be, good guidance, of course, but nothing you can think your way toward: You just have to do.

Here’s an early page, attempting to memorialize a tattered dish towel of my mom’s that neither my sister nor I really wanted to discard. Embellishment is worked over an inkjet-printed scan onto card stock. The big tear in the center can’t be seen because there’s no contrast with the background, so I think another scan with a contrast paper behind the tear will be added.

Also maybe a photo of my mom smiling in her kitchen; not a typical photo, though that’s not to say my mom didn’t smile in her kitchen. She just didn’t often “pose.”


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