Mixed Media Collage (Acrylic August)

I got a wild hair the other day and decided to tear down a full sheet (22 x 30″) of watercolor paper in quarters.   Which is working pretty large, for me, as I usually stay right around 5 x 7″ or so.   I had fun working out some “stuff” on the surface, with lots of color and using many different mediums.     I created that piece to use as collage fodder….and here is a collage on 11 x 14″ watercolor paper, made solely from that original work:

Materials used to create the original piece, which was posted here:

I haven’t glued the pieces down yet, as I feel it may need a tweak or two.   I’m gonna let it cogitate for awhile.   The original piece was so saturated with color, while this collaged piece leaves lots of space for the eye to rest, something it really needed, I think.   It feels restful and peaceful to me, even with so much vibrant magenta humming through it.   I’d love to hear what type of feelings this might bring up for you.   Maybe it makes you feel like dancing, hehe.   🙂   We can only hope, right?    Have a wonderful week!

Whimsical Flowers

I’ve been intrigued by the work of Claudia McGill and Kerfe at Method Two Madness for many moons, and been thinking about incorporating words and mixed media collage more into my abstract work.  I picked up a random book page I’d started cutting words from last summer, and these words jumped out at me, so I thought it would be fun to let them inspire my artwork.

022016I created this mainly with Neocolor II crayons, adding words cutout from a (really bad) book, adding black acrylic paint as a finishing touch.   I can see why artists get hooked on circles!    Other similar posts using this circular technique from Cat Hand on YouTube are here, here and here.   Seriously, if you ever just wanna have fun with color and play like a little kid, those Neocolor crayons and that circle technique are sure to please.

Enjoy the weekend and make time to play today.   You owe it to yourself.

Art Journal Recommendations

I created this mixed media painting in my art journal yesterday.   I’m curious what thoughts or feelings it might evoke for you?


I also couldn’t resist giving Strathmore another plug.   As some of you know, I absolutely love the Strathmore Visual art journal series.    I’ve now filled my second one and started on my third, which really has me stoked!   The Visual journals come in several flavors.  I started with the Drawing product, then tried the Mixed Media, and now I’m hooked.   So I ordered a couple more, in two sizes.   Why?  I’ll tell you.   I can throw any medium at this paper:  pen, watercolor, acrylics, colored pencil, graphite, Tombow markers, water soluble oil and wax pastels, even collage.   No bleed-through. Is there rippling?   Sometimes, but only a slight bit.   I’ve worked with (140 lb.) watercolor paper that has buckled a lot more.

While working in this journal, it seemed to me that every medium I tried just loved the paper.   It is smooth, with just a slight tooth.   It reminds me of Stonehenge paper, which is much more expensive.   And yet, these little journals (the 5.5 x 8″ size) start at just over $5.   I definitely had to have more of this paper.   So I called Blick, and talked to a product specialist (Blick-speak for artist).   Long story short, the paper in the Mixed Media Visual Journal is their 500 Series paper.   This is 100% cotton paper, their top of the line!   It’s archival, acid free, and sized for wet media.   It is a joy to touch and to work on.   It turns out that I couldn’t even buy the paper and make the journal myself for less money.   These journals are an amazing deal.   I just had to let you all know!

The painting was a journey.    I needed some space to sort out my thoughts, and my little journal was the perfect way to do that.    It includes watercolor and acrylic paint, as well as water-soluble oil and wax pastels.   I really enjoyed marrying all these mediums together on this delightful paper.   By the time I was finished, I felt like I’d been on a mini-vacation, refreshed and at peace.   Just what I needed.    And I wish the same for you this Sunday.

An Abstract Experiment


I thought it might be fun to combine acrylic and watercolor paint, so I grabbed a few colors I enjoy, and just decided to play and have fun. I was happy with the result, but a few more catalogs came in the mail today, and they once again proved to be excellent collage fodder! So here I go again with another collage to share. Didn’t some of you warn me this was addictive?  I even added a few touches of Lumiere (metallic acrylic) paint at the end, in Emerald Green.  I really enjoyed this one.

Hub and I finally caught up and watched the Christmas episode of the last series of Downton last night, and this kept me busy through that and a couple episodes of Forensic Files besides. So, about three hours. It was loads of fun, though, and I highly recommend this to anyone looking to unwind at the end of the day. Put that recycle bin to good use!

I also want to thank all of you who inspire me with your beautiful works of art, and encourage me to try new things all of the time.  This is such a kick, and I’ve never enjoyed busy season so much as I have this year!  Art is helping work go more smoothly, and maybe even vice versa.  It’s an amazing thing, this art journey.  It’s a life journey, truly.   The waters run really deep.   It’s a cool feeling.  If I have time, I’ll try and crank out a portrait or two tomorrow for the workweek.  See you then.  Enjoy your Sunday!

WC colors:  Cobalt blue, azo yellow, veridian, turquoise, phthalo blue

I Dare You Not to Laugh


I hope you laugh looking at this as much as I did while making it.  I took advice from a blogger friend who suggested I turn my last watercolor painting into the base for a collage.  Terrific suggestion, so I took my scissors and Mod Podge and had a great time putting this together from ads and catalogs in the recycle bin.

I encourage everyone to try this; it is so much fun, and all you need is scissors, glue and stuff that you’re tossing anyway.  Why not grab a friend and a bunch of old magazines and laugh and have fun with art this weekend?   Be like a kid again.   We could all use some more joy, right?

I hope you enjoy my crazy collage, and the beautiful springish weather this weekend too!

Call this a Collage?

Hmm….OK, not sure what to call this. The definition of “collage” includes the phrase “work of art”, and I’ve seen soooo many gorgeous actual collages on blogs of my friends here on WordPress.  Not sure this falls into that category, or even close, but … as I always say, here goes nothing.


I’m kind of enjoying these late-night creativity bouts.   What’s even more fun is starting with no preconceived plan or idea and just…watching what emerges.  And then, because I’m me, trying to analyze it at the end to see where in the world I was going with it, lol.   I enjoyed using lots of different mediums, including Inktense watercolor pencils, Polychromos colored pencils, Micron and Pitt permanent art pens, good ol’ Mod Podge, and of course my goony imagination.

It was fun, though, I quite enjoyed it, and so I’ll be doing more of this kind of free-wheeling, wacky creative inventing for the next several weeks while the storm that is busy season gets cranking.  I can’t think of any better way for me to release the stress of the day, and turn it into something….if not beautiful, then at least cool and fun to look at.    I hope you enjoy it.  Have a beautiful spring weekend!  *cue the dance*

Sketchbook transformed!

sketch after 03072015 Last night, I decided it was high time to un-vanilla-ify my sketchbook.  It was glumly sitting about in a plain brown wrapper, something like this: before 03072015

all sad and blue….so I gave it an inktense border, a midnight blue fabric sky and a full moon with which to play.   Oh, and my signature seagull to make it complete!  Seagulls don’t fly at night, you say?  This one does!  It has magical powerssss, precioussss. What do you all think?  Although I like it, I feel it may lack a bit of punch and pizzazz, you know, the stuff you have in your head when you’re not worn out at the end of a long day and breathing Mod Podge fumes half the night.  🙂   This is my first (feeble) attempt at collage, and I know many of you out there are way better at this than I am, so fire away!  Tell me what it needs. And then we shall dance and sing, for today is Saturday and it is time to PLAY!  Dust off that sketchbook and try something new.   You’ll never get there if you don’t pick up a pencil (paintbrush, pen, whatever) and just DO it.  *flings arty goodness and joy*

Inspired by Indigo

zen WC 03052015

I took another break from portraits to answer the call of the Inktense pencil.  It’s a call I can’t deny for long!  They are a joy to work with.   I sooo enjoyed doing this little watercolor card.  It was just what I needed at the end of a long day working with numbers.  I used lots of other media too:  Polychromos colored pencils, Tim Holtz Distress Stains, and Portfolio water soluble oil crayons, a little tissue paper, and of course the paper on top.  I will really enjoy doing more little projects like this, especially while work is so demanding.  I kept adding more color and more color because it was so much fun.  I plan to work on another one tonight.

I should have taken the photo in daylight.  It’s looking like it has a pink tinge on the screen right now, and hopefully that’s just because of the lightbulb in my face, as I’m a little bit late getting this posted.  🙂  We are due for another 6-10″ of snow tomorrow, but once the weekend comes, the forecast is for 40s and 50s, so we are all looking forward to that!  Thank God tomorrow’s Friday!  I hope you get some art time in today.  See you for the Friday dance tomorrow.