Sunday, January 25, 2015

Color in Art Journaling

Here's my week three Documented Life Challenge on the Color Wheel and a quote by Georgia O'Keeffe. 

I decided to do a Mandala for my color wheel because I do this project with my students and I love the way the designs turn out. It was a challenge because creating a mandala is a very tedious task to me....Yes, I know they are supposed to be a relaxing exercise:)

I started with a spread covered with a layer of gesso and used a variety of different mediums to fill in the mandala shapes. I was a great learning process to see how each one reacted differently to the gesso. 

I wanted to leave room for some journaling, so I put the quote along the side border.

Not one of my favorite pages, but I'm glad to be caught up! I can say each challenge is pushing me a big outside of my comfort zone and helping me try some new styles.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Using Gesso in an Art Journal

 Here's a quick step by step of how I did my week two challenge for the Documented Life Project-the Journal. The challenge is facing the blank page with gesso, and the quote was by Mary Shelley.

I use gesso on almost every journal page. I love the texture that it gives, and it allows it to hold up better for all the layers. Here I glued on some burlap and cotton duct canvas pieces and then covered it all in gesso. I added a little paint to the gesso in the background here.

After that dried, I added some color with acrylic paint.

On the next layer, I used some bubble wrap and stamps to imprint more texture. I also used a watercolor pencil to outline everything. I used my Friday and Saturday hand carved stamps since I am using my journal for a planner also.

More stamps and some designs.

I finished it off with some neocolor crayon shading, more doodles, paint and the Mary Shelley quote. This quote really brought to mind one of my favorite verses, Lamentations 3:22-23. "Because of the Lord's great love, we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness." Truly, with Jesus, the beginning is always today!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Art Journaling with Documented Life and Documented Faith

Over the past year, I have been inspired both creatively and spiritually by the Documented Life Project and the Documented Faith project. For me, it's the perfect intermingling of life, faith and creativity, so I decided to jump in feet first for 2015.  It's taken me awhile to prep my Journal/Planner, and process all the prompts, posts and emails, but I managed to be ready enough to start with the first day of January, so I wanted to share a few of my pages and thoughts.

First, I purchased the Moleskine  Diary Daily Planner. Last year, it seemed like most of the participant's used the Moleskine weekly planner, but I really wanted to have more room to journal during my daily quiet time, and also have some space to record my daily "to-do's" and prayer requests. I love the binding of the moleskins, but the paper is so thin it takes a lot of prep to get each page ready to take some of the mixed media that I prefer to use. Overall though, I think I'm pretty pleased. I also got a new Bible for Christmas with a journaling column on each page. I haven't figured out yet how I want to use this, but I've loved some of the ideas I've seen over at Documented Faith and Illustrated Faith.

For the Documented Faith challenge, the word for the month is TRUTH The verse for week one was Jeremiah 29:11. Here's my Journal page for that week.

For Documented Life, the challenge was Facing the Blank page with book pages, and the prompt was "keeper of your own goals". Here's a quick detail on how I put together my journal spread. I love using old books for art journaling. In fact, I worked in our school library for two years, so any book that was ready for the trash bin went to my art stash. I have dozens of old books with nice antiqued pages. I use them all the time to wipe off left over paint and clean off stamps, and then I use those to start my journal pages or add layers.

I started off with some book pages that were painted with paint, spray ink and stencils and stamps. Without putting too much thought into it, I tore out pieces and adhered to my page.

Next I used a watercolor pencil to define some of the edges and add some shading and detail. Then I filled in with some gray paint.

Being the "keeper of my own goals" really challenged me when put in a spiritual context. All my verses this past week have related to plans and trusting God, so I went pretty deep here. My page turned out more chaotic than I like, but I kept having random thoughts, and I just wanted to get them all down on the page. It's got a lot going on, and really no focal point, so I may still tweak it some. Overall, though, I love all the texture and grungy feel. I normally use a lot more color, but the old book pages set the tone for me.

First, when I think about my goals and dreams, I automatically consider what God's plan for me might be, because I've learned from experience that His way is always best. I have a knack for making a mess of things, and God knows my heart better than I do.  He always has great plans for us!

Proverbs 4:23 says, Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it."(NIV) With that in mind, I started thinking about the best way to keep or protect my goals and dreams, was to guard my heart. Psalm 90:12, reminds us, "... to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom." I have to protect my time, and protect myself from desires of the flesh like selfishness, and protect my heart from temptation and worrying about pleasing others. I know that God gave me the gift of creativity, and it brings me so much joy. Through creating, I can praise Him and give Him glory. It's so easy for me to not make time for the things that make my heart come alive; to cave to the pressure of pleasing others and doing what everyone else is doing instead of seeking God's pace and plan.

God has showed me three verses that I need to focus on this year that can help me "guard my heart" or "keep my goals" the best. They are all things that make my heart come alive and enable me to trust, love more and bless others. 
1) Time in His word. John 15
2) Pray continually 1Thessalonians 5:16
3) Fix my eyes on Jesus-my ultimate goal. Hebrews 12:2

I would love for you to join me in this journey for 2015. I'm hoping when my journal/planner is complete, it will be a beautiful gift of praise and documented faith to my heavenly Father. I post regularly on Facebook and Instagram, so follow me there to see my daily pages.

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