Friday, December 31, 2010

Flying into the New Year

It's a very chilly night, here... I'm tucked up on the couch, playing with the dog and doodling. I hope everyone's tucked up somewhere warm, if not now then soon.

Flying into 2011... here's a mixed media journal spread done with acrylic paint, decorative masking tape, Sakura paint pen, gel pen and Prismacolor pencils. I used a very dull x-acto knife to cut out the birdie.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Playin around

Another really inspiring and productive day out at Patti's studio, today. Plus I got the chance to try out her lightbox and got some shots out of my large hemp journal, which is spiral-bound and thus challenging to scan.
The first one is a background from that book that is ONLY background, but I love the colours and the textures that I got playing with palette knives. The lightbox set up really captured the blues and greens well, I think. I dusted off my Wacom tablet to draw the fish in Photoshop. I'll have to do that more, because I'd forgotten how much fun that is.

This one started out as pan pastels, which I then painted over with clear medium, collaged on some nice paper, added some washi tape around the edge and sketched the birds in white gel pen.

And this one is so mixed and from so long ago now that I don't remember all the steps. o_O

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A quick post...

I really need to set up a light box like Patti has to take pictures of her work at night. I'm never home during the week until after dark, so without a light box you get a crappy scan instead.
It would be much easier if the book wasn't landscape format I suppose... and if I could work on just one page at a time instead of spewing my art over both pages. But where's the fun in that?

Friday, November 12, 2010

Spiral bound books I find a bit challenging to scan... however, here is the inside back cover of my blue journal. Not done yet, but I do like the colours.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Blue journal

Patti and I both got one of these mixed media journals from Strathmore and, oddly enough, I've been using its pages for sketching only, so far. I have managed to get a start on the front and back covers and took some shots outside.
The front.

The back.

Gargoyle reads.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Pencil sketch, originally... then I scanned it and played in Photoshop for a very small amount of time. Need more time! My evenings are too short.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

from the depths of my desk drawers...

... I unearthed a drawing of mine from 2001. It had a young elf cleaning her sword while a raven sat upon her helmet, and I really liked it at the time. Now, not so much. The arms are awry, the boots are weird and her helmet looks plastic. So I thought I'd try a fresh approach to her and re-draw the scene, but it kept not gelling in my head. Finally I realized that she needed to be done a different way, because I'm different now. Or at least I'm older. ;)

Watercolours, Pigma Micron pen and white pencil crayon.

I wonder what I'll think of this attempt in another nine years?

Thursday, September 30, 2010

just goofin' around, that's all...

(I miss the old This Hour...)

Here's a couple that I painted in Patti's gorgeous leather-bound journal. The paper was yummy! I love the way it took the sepia watercolour and it didn't buckle at all under the acrylics. Smooth, hot-press watercolour paper is my favourite paper evar. I do try to broaden my horizons, but keep going back to it. :)

My thanks to Patti for the great photos!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Because having a readership of one or two lets me get away with it...

When I first found spaces that were strictly for art online I was a pretty happy camper. I love art, I love artists, I love reading about their processes, discouragements and successes. I'm neither talented nor confident enough to make a living at it myself, but it's always been my number one hobby since Nana stuck a broken crayon in my little fist.

I've never been a big fan of certain art types. Performance art, erotic art, and tagging, for example. I wouldn't seek it out myself but whatever floats your boat, dude.

Erotic art especially is something I am completely uninterested in, although I do believe it is a valid art form and can be practiced to the point where it's museum-quality. It can also be a 19 year old boy drawing his "fur-sona". Definitely not museum-quality, but should he be stopped from doing so and posting online? Who the hell cares?? I don't care. I don't have to look at it. I certainly won't be posting about him, or mocking him because what he does isn't to my liking.

This is all just ranting because one of my favourite stopping places online posted a really unnecessary bit about the art journal craze. Maybe if the writer wasn't a fairly well-known and working artist it wouldn't have rankled so much. As is, the whole post seemed so mean-spirited. Like the owner of a large restaurant going over to the hot dog vendor on the corner and laughing in his face for being poor. Not only laughing at him, but inviting all of his friends to come over and do the same thing. Just really poor manners.

It discourages me, probably because it hits so close to home (and because I'm fighting migraines and the office plague and I'm hormonal). I don't like thinking that one of my favourite artists would look at what I do and turn up his nose. It has happened to me before, though, when a friend encouraged me to send some things to a "real artist" for input. I was told I didn't even have the basics of artistic talent - that there was nothing in my stuff to even critique it was so bad. I did cry over that but it didn't stop me from making messes because I am literally incapable of stopping.

The message of people like Kelly Rae Roberts and Teesha Moore speaks to me because they're saying that I don't have to go into making art with the sole intention of Making Fine Art. It really is okay to just enjoy the process! That's what I'd been needing to hear for a really long time. I thank my friend Patti for first introducing me to the concept. A couple of times, being able to shut everything out and paint has literally saved my sanity.

I am not a sunshiny personality, I'm a pessimist and I don't believe that the sky is the limit. I believe if I followed my bliss that I'd likely end up walking off a cliff for lack of proper signage. The pages of my art journals reflect that. No one in the art journal community has ever told me that I'm not really creating anything because I don't use pink stripes and audobon birds. I certainly wouldn't tell them they aren't artists because they only use collage or only make jewellry. Do your thang. I have no reason to judge.

I guess that's what I want everyone to understand: you have no reason to judge. Let people do their thang. Especially if you're lucky enough to be able to make a living from your artwork.
Now I'm gonna go make messes with fucking finger paints. :P

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Again With The Pretty Papers

This is from my little square hemp journal which is currently in Patti's keeping while we swap. :)

Not yet finished... but I like his/her hair. Fluid acrylics and Pitt pens.

My sincerest apologies to any octopus enthusiasts. It's just a doodle and doodles are immune to anatomy.

I Do Like To Play With Pretty Papers.

I've also been playing with oil pastels and matte medium a fair bit lately, along with Pitt brush pens, beeswax, masking tape, blended fibre paste, paper clay, and watercolours.
 This is the front cover to my current favourite journal. Patti and I found two of them left at The Papery and loved the weight of the paper. It really stands up to a lot of abuse. The shiny cover was a bit of a pain to sand off, but enough matte medium could make a politician stick to his promises...

 One of the abused pages inside the journal du jour... Axel dubbed him Professor Erstwhile and it stuck. Must've been all the matte medium.

I had a wave of nostalgia the other day for being ten years old when I loved purple and reading the Oz books with all the John R. Neill illustrations.

Friday, May 7, 2010

What a good day

Bean and I went for his first (but not last!) visit to Patti's studio and huge puppy fun was had by all! Patti's husband Tim Zurowski is an amazing wildlife photographer and he kindly offered to get some shots of His Bean-ness today. He needed all his skill to capture this puppy-blur! He just does not sit still unless he's comatose, and when he's comatose, he's snuggled next to someone. Not an ideal subject really, except that he's so damned cute!

What you can't see here are Patti and Tim's two standard poodles, Cody and Keiko, who are fantastic doggy hosts! Cody and Bean got along like a house a-fire and Bean was wooooorn out by the end of the day. He napped a couple of times in his kennel, so Patti and I got to art awhile too.We played with some awesome Japanese masking tape, from Pretty Tape and Happy Tape and pan pastels, mmmm.

I had a moment today where I was perfectly happy and finally felt that all the grief I've gone through up to now has been totally worth it. :)

Haven't had an awful lot of time to do any involved projects, but I've been doing a lot of doodling and painting of abstract backgrounds in my journals.

Here's a few of them.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A little distracted lately...

... and here's why.

Meet the 4-legged addition to our family: Bean!
He's a border collie/black lab mix and, yes, we are insane for doing this to ourselves. ;)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

And the latest piece

I utilized charcoal and matte medium a lot in this one, as well as some clothing pattern paper.

Newest Journal

I love my little square hemp journal so much that I got its big sister, my medium rectangular hemp journal... which somehow does not flow off the tongue quite as easily. This is the cover and a few of the inside pages. Still want to dropkick Photoshop.


Wow, what a lot of changes in so small a time-frame. New jobs, new house, new household accoutrements, deaths in the family, huge family dramas and my one and only kiddo getting her first job. Feels like I've been thrown into the deep end of the pool and I'm just now getting that first gasp of air after struggling to the surface! I sure do wish that life came with an instruction manual. I'm sure all of you have been in a similar position at some point.

ANYways. Art!

I finally got the scanner hooked up again, although Photoshop is running like a passed-out sloth on my old desktop for some reason.

There's so much to catch up on, it will likely take me a few days of scanscanscan-swear at Photoshop-scanscanscan.

Here's a few to start:

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Not dead!

I have not died! I am just in the middle of the most hectic, sad, happy, funny, frustrating 3 month period of my life. Apologies go out to anyone reading from iATC! I had to be a total flake online in order to keep it all together off-line. Maybe one day I'll have enough time to get back to it. In the meantime, I don't even have my art supplies with me, so pencil is having to make do.

I'm hoping that by February I'll be able to make a more substantial post.

Sure do miss art-blog-surfing. :(

Here's a quick sketch before I go.