Printed Patchwork

Last week’s Art Journal Adventure prompt was to create a mosaic or patchwork design.  I have had it in the back of my mind that I need to be making more frequent and better use of my small gelli plate press and I thought this prompt would be a great opportunity to use it.

I painted my art journal page black in the hopes that it would make subsequent layers of colour pop. I then used the small rectangular gelli plate to place oblongs of colour around the page, allow some to overlap.  For the first layer, I used just whole blocks of colour.  For the next layer of printing, however, I used stencils to create visual texture.  Finally, I used ghost prints of leaf shaped masks hoping they would give the piece some focus, some place for the eyes to rest.

34a Patchwork - Gelli Prints

Once all the printing was dry, I picked up some black and white paint pens and outlined the leaf shapes and some marks reminiscent of stitching in order to create more of a patchwork feel to the page.  The outcome is not great but I enjoyed the process and will definitely try to pick up that small gelli plate for often to create layered backgrounds in mixed media pieces.

34b Patchwork - Gelli Prints

Smushy Muse and Portmanteau Words

It’s Week 48 on the Life Book course and what a busy week it is.  I cannot believe it is Week 48 already.  Where on earth has this year gone?  It has absolutely whipped by.  Aside from everything we have done and accomplished in Pict family life, I have crammed a lot of art into this year.  That makes me happy.  As this year draws to a close (because – seriously – it is week 48 already!) I am already making plans for the arty bit of my life for next year.  I am signed up to do Life Book 2016 and I just learned a few days ago from the lovely Julia Osterc of Loving Road that I have won a place on a Mixed Media Mythology course.  How cool is that?  I am also considering signing up for another course called Let’s Face It.  Meanwhile, I still have my Altered Book of Monsters project on the go and I will probably embark on another 100 Artworks Challenge having completed my Crazy Critters.  Hmmmm.  That’s quite a lot now that I am looking at it all listed.  It’s good to have goals and challenges though, right?

So with the prospect of a busy year of art ahead, this week was a busy week for art.  I was playing catch up with Life Book and Week 48 had three elements to it.  First up was a lesson with Donna Downey about using what she calls a “smush book”.  I have been using one for a few months now but I call it my sidekick journal.  It is a small journal in which I smear my unused paint and other media so that they don’t go to waste.  I then use that journal for quick wee sketches when I am out and about, such as when I am sitting outside my 8 year old’s guitar lesson.  Downey demonstrated using the random smears in her “smush book” through painting in the negative space.  Her resulting image was about muses.  I used the excess paint from my Autumn Fairy to create a more harmonious random page.  I must have still been in a fairy frame of mind as that was the  muse figure I carved out when I began painting in the negative space.  I like using negative spaces so this was a fun technique and one I am sure I will use again in my “sidekick journal”.

Week 48 - Smush Book Muse

The other two bonus lessons this week were from Lynzee Lynx and Tamara Laporte.  Tamara’s lesson was an introduction to gelli plate printing.  I don’t get my gelli plate out too often but when I do I really enjoy it and produce print after print after print which I can use as backgrounds in journal pages or as collage papers.  I didn’t get my gelli plate out for this Life Book lesson but instead dipped into my file of collage materials and selected a gelli print.  It was one I had just filed away, a ghost print from the fish journal page I had just created.  I decided to use this gelli print as the background for Lynx’s lesson, thus combining the two, saving me time and helping me catch up a bit with my art projects.  Lynx’s lesson was about playfully fusing words to create new, fun words that can be used in art journalling and other creative projects.  I am familiar with portmanteau words because my husband and oldest son deploy them all the time, much to their amusement.  As I happened to be drinking a mug of tea while I was thinking about art, I decided to fuse the words “Art” and “Tea”, two simple things that make me happy.  My definition of “ArTea” is “Tea in which a paint brush has been dunked mistaking the cup for the adjacent jar of water”.  That is something I have done several times.  I am pretty sure most arty tea drinkers have done the same.

Week 48 - Portmanteau Words

And now I am all caught up in time for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate!