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Get Messy Art Journal: 3

You’re invited…

This week’s Get Messy Art Journal Challenge pages are a response to Lauren’s prompt for July:

Prompt #1: Let’s have a party!
Art Challenge: Plan a fun party! Create a collage detailing what your party will be like. Include food, drinks, décor, lighting, color scheme, dress code, place settings, location, guests, etc. Plan until your hearts content! There is no money limit or restrictions. Use your photos, magazines, art supplies, etc to create a collage, mood board or anything you would use to give to a party planner to convey your artistic direction for the event.
Journaling challenge: Detail for us who you will invite, time of day, location, purpose, etc.

I admit, I had no idea how to plan this imaginary soirée. I was torn between my desire to cobble together some ambitious, Pinterest-worthy setpiece, and my desire to show a party I’d actually throw in real life. I started thinking about parties I’ve loved in the past, and realized they had one defining characteristic:

Their simplicity.

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(click on photo for a larger view)

The best parties I’ve ever been to were unplanned gatherings of those with a will to be wild.

They took place on Pensacola Beach under a full moon, and consisted of good friends, good beer, a swimsuit, a guitar, and a bonfire. If you had a dollar for the bridge toll and the right kind of friends, you were golden.

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My ideal party would include midnight swims in luminescent water, cold drinks of all kinds, fire dancing, all your favorite songs on the guitar, and a bonfire to warm yourself by and talk to your closest friends into the night.

At this party, we’ll sing as loud as we want, swim in the moonlight, and dance barefoot in the cool sand.

This has been going on since the dawn of time:

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“Nuit d’été (A Summer Night)”, by Winslow Homer, 1890.

Are you in?

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GetMessy_1000x297

Get Messy is an art journal challenge where a gang of crafty vixens are sharing art journal pages we have created to practice our skills and push past our creative limits with hopes to inspire. We share our pages without restraint every week, and once a month we create around a prompt. Go check out these crazy talented ladies who are creating pages who each have a unique perspective and style. We will be sharing our work around social media so follow the Pinterest board and the Instagram hashtag #getmessyartjournal.

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Get Messy Art Journal: Adding Pages to a Bound Book

I love bound notebooks, but one of their drawbacks is the inability to change their paper. For my Get Messy Art Journal Challenge book, I knew I needed a bound book to protect my pages. But I felt stumped on how to include all the pretty art and scrapbook paper I’d chosen for the project.

Then I ran across a book entitled The Decorated Page, by Gwen Diehn. Aside from being packed full of wonderful art journal inspiration, it also contained an idea for how to add pages to a bound notebook. I decided to try out her instructions and report the results.

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1. First I selected the paper I wished to add to the art journal, and cut it approximately to size.

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2. I used a ruler and a craft knife to remove a sheet of the notebook where I wanted to insert the art paper, making sure to leave a 3/4″ stub to attach the new paper to.

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3. I chose my piece of art paper (for this demonstration, a piece of tracing paper) and used the cut-out page of the notebook as a stencil, to trim the art paper exactly to size.

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4. I lined the art paper up next to the paper stub left in the notebook, and used a tiny bit of scotch tape to hold them together.

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5. Now for the fun part — washi tape!

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6. I ran a strip of washi tape over the seam between the notebook paper stub and the new art paper. The tiny bit of scotch tape held it secure while I did so, and the washi tape covered the scotch tape.

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7. I gently turned the new “page”, and applied washi tape along the seam between the art paper and the notebook paper stub on that side, too.

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8. Now time to trim off the extra washi tape at the bottom and top of the notebook!

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9. There was a bit of overhang in the new art paper page when I shut the art journal, so I used scissors to trim it away (and round the corners to match my notebook).

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10. Here we go! A freshly-inserted piece of art paper has become a page in my bound art journal!

  • This technique seems to work well for various thicknesses of paper, from tracing paper to textured watercolor paper.
  • Regular-width (or even wider!) washi tape is better than thin washi tape, as thin tape isn’t wide enough to grip the two paper edges together very well.
  • This tape bond holds up, especially if it’s left to set for a few days before being worked on — I wouldn’t hang myself off the added sheet or anything, but it’s certainly strong enough to make art on.
  • You can tape the pages together with tape that contrasts boldly, or with tape that blends the two pages together — it’s a neat look either way!

I hope you found this tutorial helpful! I recommend checking out The Decorated Page if you get a chance. I’d love to hear whether you’re tried this method in your art journal, and what your results were!

Now for a sneak peek at this Thursday’s Get Messy Art Journal pages:

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GetMessy_1000x297

Get Messy is an art journal challenge where a gang of crafty vixens are sharing art journal pages we have created to practice our skills and push past our creative limits with hopes to inspire. We share our pages without restraint every week, and once a month we create around a prompt. Go check out these crazy talented ladies who are creating pages who each have a unique perspective and style. We will be sharing our work around social media so follow the Pinterest board and the Instagram hashtag #getmessyartjournal.

 

GetMessy1000px

Get Messy Art Journal: 2

This second week of my art journal was both more relaxing and more challenging. I liked my first pages, and so this time I dealt with a small bit worry about “living up to them” in the second go-round. But it was easy to get over–pages need to be done, not perfect. Also, I felt freer to explore the materials however I wanted to. I got messier. And it reflects this tumultuous week very well.

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I’m happy to say, in the process of making these pages, I wrote my first two poems in almost eight years! Creativity breeds creativity.

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Nothing went wrong with my week, per se. But the job situation in this house has been quite a rollercoaster, and some of the feelings I’ve had have been dramatic. It definitely helps to know I’ve got a partner supportive of my career and creativity.

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I tried to capture both the moments of calm and the days of intensity.

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We have a cozy home, and it’s a refuge from the serious-business things we’re working out about the place we want to create for ourselves in the world.

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Some days have really called on my inner resources.

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All in all, this has been one of those summers where I got all ready to put my feet up, and instead had my socks knocked off. Can’t complain, though–it’s been a rocket of personal growth, career insight, exciting plans, dramatic realizations, and deep love. I know I will look back and be eternally grateful for the visual record of this art journal.

Here are my tips for documenting a turbulent week in an art journal or a scrapbook:

1. It’s okay to be oblique. You don’t have to describe exactly what happened, if you don’t want to. It’s not the same as vagueposting–this is for YOU, and the combination of words, pictures and colors will be enough to remind you of how you felt.

2. Conversely, feel free to be as explicit and descriptive as you like. If the image or words on the page seem too stark, try painting over them with a thin wash of color, partly obscuring them with a photo, or using paper and washi tape to create a “cover” that must be opened to see the story.

3. Let yourself go. There’s no need to contain your feelings into the style that you’re used to. The very purpose of the feelings that you’re having may be to broaden your style!

4. Some good art materials for intense emotions are acrylic paint, graphite sticks for scribbling, sandpaper to “open” the page, and india ink to create a feeling of boldness.

5. If you make your art journal page, and still feel that it’s too personal to deal with on the daily, don’t tear it out! Use some tiny tape rolls around the edges of the spread to hold it closed in your journal. That way it can still be there, but you won’t have to see it–and nobody else easily can, either.

Above all, love yourself for what you let yourself create. Authenticity is gorgeous.

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GetMessy_1000x297

Get Messy is an art journal challenge where a gang of crafty vixens are sharing art journal pages we have created to practice our skills and push past our creative limits with hopes to inspire. We share our pages without restraint every week, and once a month we create around a prompt. Go check out these crazy talented ladies who are creating pages who each have a unique perspective and style. We will be sharing our work around social media so follow the Pinterest board and the Instagram hashtag #getmessyartjournal.

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Summer ’14 Reading List

At the beginning of each season this year, I’ve set out a stack of books to read over that span of months. At the end of the season, I write a review post about what I thought of each book.

I tend to read faster when I’ve given myself an “assignment”. All those years in college gave me the habit, I suppose!

Here are the books I’ve been reading this summer:

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The Secret Circle Trilogy, by L.J. Smith (author of The Vampire Diaries). This is a re-read for me. I first found and loved these books back in the 90s. It’s a lovely story about a coven of witches in New England.

A Natural History of the Senses, by Diane Ackerman.

The Power of Myth, by Joseph Campbell and Bill Moyers. Another re-read of a book I loved in high school. Everything you ever wanted to know about mythology, psychology, and archetypes. Amazing stuff!

I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was, by Barbara Sher.

Being, Belonging, Doing: Balancing Your Three Greatest Needs, by Ronald Potter-Efron.

Show Your Work! by Austin Kleon.

Artist’s Manual: A Complete Guide to Painting and Drawing Materials and Techniques, by Angela Gair and Chronicle Books.

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles, by Steven Pressfield.

Letters to a Young Poet, by Rainer Maria Rilke.

The Air Conditioned Nightmare, by Henry Miller (not pictured).

I love to read, and I’ve been trying to making more time for it. I got a little burned out on reading while I was in grad school, and I’ve averaged only 5 books a year in the years since. 2014 has already knocked the socks off that limit. I might be ready to go for the big 5-0 next year. We’ll see!

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Get Messy Art Journal: Supplies

With only two days until Thursday’s Get Messy Art Journal layout reveal, I thought I’d share my favorite art journal supplies, as well as a sneak peek at one of my upcoming pages.

I’m pretty simple when it comes to a project’s supplies. I choose some tried-and-true things, and whatever other supplies I’m most in love with right then, and attempt to stick to that “limited palette”, as painters call it. Too many options and I get anxious. That might change as I become more comfortable with the project, but right now I’m trying to see how much can be said with the basics.

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What I’m using (approximately clockwise):

  • Quad Rule composition book
  • Tombo glue pen
  • Assorted washi tape
  • Various brushes
  • Black liquid acrylic paint
  • White craft paint
  • Gold acrylic paint
  • Craft knife
  • 3 dip pens: 2 round nib, 1 crow-quill
  • Black India ink
  • Silver, gold, copper and black Sharpies
  • Black photo corners
  • Conte sticks in many colors
  • White Sakura Gelly Roll pen
  • Graphite stick
  • White crayon

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K & Company and Crate Paper pads, and Mi-Teintes art paper.

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Some of the Crate Paper pad selection.

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Some of the K & Company paper pad.

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And I finally found some magazines! I think I last bought a magazine seven years ago–I mainly get media from the good old internet. But these National Geographics I found have beautiful photos, and will go great with my art style.

Finally, here’s a tiny peek at one of the first pages I made for this week’s Get Messy Art Journal Challenge. Full reveal right here on Thursday morning!

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GetMessy_1000x297

Get Messy is an art journal challenge where a gang of crafty vixens are sharing art journal pages we have created to practice our skills and push past our creative limits with hopes to inspire. We share our pages without restraint every week, and once a month we create around a prompt. Go check out these crazy talented ladies who are creating pages who each have a unique perspective and style. We will be sharing our work around social media so follow the Pinterest board and the Instagram hashtag #getmessyartjournal.

cutting the other edge

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