Thursday, 12 August 2010

Art Journaling with Dina Wakley: Part 4 + a small confession

Hi, hi, hi.

First things first, for those of you on 'pyjama watch', let me say that there's not a single glimpse of nightwear in this post. It's 15.50 and I'm fully dressed made-up and wearing new shoes. Lovely new shoes.

All of which has nothing to do with this final piece of work I created during Dina Wakley's art journaling workshop:

I used the same mask - that of a model cut from a fashion magazine - as I did on the page featured in yesterday's post. Only this time I made her into triplets.

My main intention with this page was simply to use colours outside my usual 'go to' palette: I rarely use such soft, natural greens and browns in my work and thought it would be good to set myself such a challenge:I had intended to add a splash of vivid red but somehow this got diverted into warm pinks and shades of claret. I'm not sure I love it - but it was worth the experimentation:
I'd also decided to go a little stencil-crazy on this page, just to see how far I could push the technique. I kept returning to it with one another floral, scrolled, vine design stencil and new colour spray ink after another. I like to think the finished effect is something reminiscent of a brocade fabric or heavily patterned wallpaper: Needless to say ... all this creativity was thirsty work:I find that a cup of tea is as essential as paint and pens when I'm creating [and when I'm not!].

While we were priming our blank pages, Dina had mentioned how, if your initial layer of gesso thick enough, you can make marks in it to add interest to your background. I covered my entire page with &&&&&&&& ampersands - I think you can just about make them out [they're on thier side] below: I don't know if you'll find this strange but I love ampersands. Seriously! There's just something so positive about them. 'And' is a good word. It means there's something more. It means there something after. It means there's something to look forward to. And all of this can be represented in one little stmbol: '&'.

I like it so much that I even considered naming my blog '&then' because the whole point of my blog is that I make, see, hear or do something ..... and then I share it with you! Anyway ....

Inspired by this, the journaling on the page is simply a series of three repeated phrases: 'and then'; 'pattern repeat' and '& again'; each within its own body-shaped outline:The finishing touch was some leaf shapes cut from an old book page, covered in gel medium and when dry, wiped over with whatever colour ink was still wet on the sheet of kitchen towel nearest to me!

So there we go. The fourth and final page from last Friday:Oh yes ... in my title I promised you a small confession didn't I? And it wasn't the fact that I love the '&' sign. No. My confession is .... that despite having taken two of Dina's workshops and sharing my work with you here ...

... my name's Julie and I'm not an art-journaler. I don't ever do it and I felt like a fraud when everyone else in the workshop was talking about it!

That's not to say that I won't ever art-journal, just that prior to and in between me taking Dina's workshops I hadn't and still don't have an art journal. I did find an amazing old notebook, with lots of blank pages, at a collector's fair which would make an incredible space in which to begin ... yet I haven't begun.

For me, if it's something I'm happy to write about and share with others, I find myself turning on the laptop and sharing it right here on my blog. With you.

My notes on paper are at 'notesonpaper'.

And as yet, I'm not sure how to reconcile this with art-journaling ... do you think my laptop would cope with me spraying it with ink and smudging it with oil pastel? Perhaps not eh?

So, let me just say thanks so much for sticking with me through my four-part arty revelations; and for taking time to leave me some most-welcome feedback. Also a big 'hello' to my newest followers this week. I'm really happy you found your way here and that you chose to kick off your shoes on my mat and hang around with me for a while.

Just ... please don't un-follow me in light of my non-art-journaling status ... you could always try to make a convert out of me instead!

J ;)


  1. Psssst....I don't do it either. And I don't drink tea, which is even worse.

    I do, on the other hand, think these are every bit as lovely as the previous pieces, slightly more muted (autumnal? Haaaa!) shades included. I especially like the brocadey/damaskish detail in the pic above your mug of tea.


  2. Well, I absolutely love this piece, Julie - those layers upon layers just have me tingling. And that's without a cup of tea ... :)

  3. Found your blog today and I love what you are doing! Incredible! Thanks for sharing.

  4. And...I appreciate your hoensty....I love what you journaler or are fabulous! I shall continue to follow and enjoy!


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