Nourishing My Creative Spirit

I have had a very busy and stressful year at work.  My past habit has been to retreat to the escape of fiction in the form of books.  I established a goal for this year to spend at least one evening a week in my studio, and to document that.  I fell short of adding to my accomplishments jar some time in late February, but by then, I had firmly established my pattern of entering my studio and nourishing my creative self.

I’ve played a LOT with my various Gelli Plates.  I’ve collected a lot of paint in my quest to find opaque paints.  Who knew that almost everything I had in my stock of Golden fluid acrylics would turn out to be a transparent color?  I’ve spent a lot of time browsing YouTube for art journalling and mixed media videos.  And, I’ve spent a lot of quality time with my art journal.  I also joined Instagram, where you can find me as @AnLiNaDesigns.  I’m chronicling my art journaling, and my kittens’ adventures, there in pictures.

Here are a few months worth of journal pages, oldest to newest.  You can see that I am getting better the more I practice!  Starting from the week of March 9th and going through today.

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Awake at 3am, March

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A Girl and Her Bird, started in March, finished in mid-April.

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Zen Sunset, April

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3 Leaves and a Flower, April

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A, Started in late April, Finished May 1

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Art is Not What You See, started from a trash page a week ago, finished yesterday, May 3

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Aimlessly Wandering in Circles Forever, started today, maybe finished, maybe not!

Last but not least, Art-Xscape 2015 classes are online and registration is open.  Check it out!  Kelly Kilmer is teaching art journalling in Austin Texas!  Probably partially why I’ve been so motivated to journal lately!

Art-Xscape 2015 Call for Proposal

I’ve spent the majority of my week, outside of my day job, working on getting Art-Xscape 2015 launched.  Hotel contract signed: check.  Website update: check!  Call for Proposal sent: check!!  Art-Xscape 2015 will be held October 8-11, 2015 at the Holiday Inn Austin Midtown.  That just happens to be the second weekend of the Austin City Limits Music Festival, so there will be a LOT of people in town.  Anyhow, if you’d like to submit a proposal, leave me a comment and I’ll be in touch.  The deadline is March 6, 2015.

The week between Christmas and New Year’s was spent with my baby brother, Andrew.  One of the things I did with him was visit the Hope Outdoor Art Gallery, aka the Graffiti park!  I had planned to go by once a month last year, but that fell by the way side.  Hopefully, I will make it back more often this year.  Andrew and I had fun clambering around the levels.  While we were there, I listened in on 4 gentlemen in work clothes talking about structural changes.  My fear was that they were going to tear the park down.  I checked in with the guys in the check-in booth and they reassured me that that was absolutely not the case.  The guys were from the city and they are working on improvements.  Hopefully, the work that is done will not close the park down for any length of time!  Here are some of my favorite photo’s from this visit.

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The shading on Batman is pretty incredible.

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My favorite work in the park was by ER.  This Einstein (Think Harder) was amazing!

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The turtle was also done by ER.

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The light was perfect this day (Tuesday before New Year’s).  The day before and the day after were cold and gray and rainy, but we had this one gorgeous day!

2015: A New Year, New Art

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2014 was the lost year.  Seriously, I can honestly tell you I don’t have a record of most of what I did outside of my day job.  To combat that this year, I’m leveraging an idea I’ve seen several other places, including Stampington’s Resolutions blog post, to create an “accomplishments” jar.  When I do something that is on my annual goals list, something big from my to do list, or something creatively fulfilling, I’m going to write it on a slip of paper (already have cut up a stack), date it and put it in my jar.  That way, at the end of the year, I will have a way to know WHAT I actually did this year.

One of my goals for this year, as it was for last year, is to post more.  I failed miserably at that last year, part of the “lost” items for last year, but am trying again this year.  I have a few things that I do remember from last year that I never shared.  The first Art-Xscape was a success.  I’m hopefully close to solid dates for the next one.  My beloved Marigold went across the rainbow bridge to wait for me.  The 4th All Dolls Are Art went in the books and the 5th is open for registration.  I went to Barcelona for work.  I adopted two rescue kittens.  I participated in the 2nd annual ATX Artisans Etsy Local market.  I opened a new Etsy shop!  So, I have a lot of catching up to do with you here.

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First, I’d like to introduce my new girls, not so little now, Calla (the calico) and Cookie (the Siamese).  They are sisters, and soon will be 7 months old.  They are sweet and funny and definitely brought a blast of sunshine into my life.  Calla is the innocently ornery fearless one.  Cookie is the vocal lover when she wants to be and is more timid than her sister.  They think I’m a softer, louder, more fragile cat tree. 

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Second, I’d like to introduce my new Etsy shop: AnLiNa Mixed Media by AnLiNa Designs.  I have put a lot of my new work there and will be transitioning my art dolls there are they expire on my first Etsy shop.  AnLiNa Designs will remain where I stock my hand-dyed velvet, rayon, cotton and trims.  I’ll be adding digital collage and paper packs in the future.  (speaking of the ornery fearless one, she’s in front of my screen trying to play with the cursor!).

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Last, I’ve been spending more time in my art journals lately.  Yes, that is journals, plural.  I’ve given up on just working in one.  I have one that I’m chronicalling my life and thoughts in and another that I’ve gelli printed in.  The third is my painting journal.  I’ve not gotten very far with it yet, but after spending lots of time online looking at art journalling videos, I broke it in this week.  Here are two spreads, not so well documented in stages as I took some of the in process photos on my cell phone and some with the camera.  This is definitely not my usual style, but I like it. 

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This is the second or third layer on the 2-page spread.  I started with Dylusions spray inks through stencils, then FW inks dripped and spread around the page.  Then a charcoal pencil and Caran Dache Neo Color 2 crayons.  Paint and more marks with black FW ink.  Matte medium over the crayons and to glue two news paper circles down.  More paint.

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This has lever layers of paint on top, white on both sides, an orange on the left outside the bird (which I didn’t like once I got it down, so more white).  Then I started stencilling, painting, drawing with FW ink and a skewer and just kept going.
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I think this is the finished spread, but I could change my mind still.

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“Be There” scanned in to my laptop.

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And “Flowers”, also scanned in.  Very subdued color palette, which is not my usual style, but I’m pretty happy with it.

Art-Xscape 2014

I’ve been a busy beaver the last two weeks, getting started with trades for Art-Xscape 2014, which is coming up April 4-6, 2014.  I’ve been playing with altering an Altoid Tin.

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Plus I’ve interviewed Lynne Perrella, Pamela Hastings, Lisa Renner, Cathy Taylor, and Stephanie Rubiano for the Art-Xscape blog, all of whom are teaching at Art-Xscape.

Here’s a preview of some of their classes, all of which still have openings!

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Each of these were posted to the Art-Xscape Facebook page.  If you would like to see updates on the event, like our page and visit often!

Art-Xscape–Breaking the Boundaries

As I announced in June of last year, I’ve launched a new venture – a mixed media art retreat called Art-Xscape.  The event is the first weekend in April and we have so much fun planned!  I’ve got faculty interviews going up over on the Art-Xscape blog.  If you are looking to broaden your artistic horizons – consider joining us!  We have classes available with Pamela Huntington, Kathy Kromer, Jo Pearson, Lynne Perrella, Lisa Renner, Stephanie Rubiano, Val Studer and Cathy Taylor.  Our classes run the gamut of media and techniques:  fabric books, paper and painted books, figures, collage, painting, assemblage, encaustics, alcohol inks and monoprints.  All of our classes are 1-day, so you can mix and match to your heart’s desire!  Visit the Art-Xscape page to find out more!

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This is a new class from Lynne Perrella!