Another Face Appeared on the Page

HI Everyone.

It has been a very long time since I have blogged. Life is good. Life has been busy. There has still been enough time to squeeze out some secret works of art that I would like to share with you now. Here is a new friend that wanted to come out to play.

Rose 2

And a bit of a closer look. What have you been up to?

rose

All In a dream

HI ALL!

I am hosting a new workshop coming up in August on the 17th. We will be designing, drawing and painting our own personal Dream Catchers in our journals. If you live in the Durham Region (Ontario) you should RSVP on the Facebook group ART JOURNAL LOVE and come check out our group of awesome women who have ART in there heARTS. If you don’t live in Ontario – no problem! You should still join the group because it is a place where we can get inspiration and share ideas. Here is the link….

https://www.facebook.com/events/1750161118574779/

I’ve been to London to Visit the Queen

Pussy cat, Pussy cat, where have you been? I’ve been to London to visit the Queen. Pussy cat, Pussy cat, what did you there? I frightened a little mouse under the chair….

Well…you will have noticed that I have been away for a while from my blog. It has been a busy time and not a busy time all rolled in to one. I have been teaching a lot and my day job is very stressful. Sometimes it takes all my energy just to stay upright. I have been creating, but it has been creating just for the classroom – samples of what we will be doing each class. I have not been doing much creating just for me and I believe it is a time when I could have used it.

After returning from my trip it was no surprise to those who have embarked on the same journey, that I returned a different person. Nothing seemed right…nothing fit. It was like I was displaced from my previous life and thrown into unknown waters. I know this sounds weird because you will say, but Heather it is your life. I say yes…and no.

All I truly know, is that it has been a really rough year.

As I come up to the point where I left for my adventure last year I yearn to tidy up loose ends and finish projects and get them gone! Here are a few things that I have done just recently.

I finished a round robin travelling journal entry that will be going to Harriet Hensley in Tennessee. I painted Toronto  because…Let’s face it! She would have no idea where Durham Region is. I used spray inks, collaged magazine letters, and acrylic paints in my double spread.

I also finished off a page in another journal headed for Virginia. The theme was things that you like or bring you joy. I love coffee and so I made some cups out of scrapbook papers and glued them onto the page. I used acrylic paints on the background and wrote out the words of a song by one of my fave groups the Manhattan Transfer – I love coffee, I love tea, I love my java jive and it loves me….It was a lot of fun and I really liked the colours I chose.

The last picture I worked on will go towards my many faces of women project. I have a plan to paint 52 pictures of women. I am delving in to other cultures for the next few paintings to see what flows out of me. Here is Mariel. Named by my friend Shireen.

Mariel

So you see…I have been painting. Just not sharing. I will promise to get better and post more if at all possible. Mission accomplished – 3 things done! Next!!

Artfully yours

P.S. No mice were actually harmed in the process of making this art ; )

 

Art Journal LOVE!

Art journal love

I  wanted to drop in to let you know that as of June 10th 2016 I have decided to close down my Meet up group Art Journaling 101 and open a new group up on Facebook called Art Journal Love. The meet up platform was great and well laid out, but it was getting a bit pricey each month when added to room rentals and supplies. This way there is more money for fun! Join us on Facebook to see when the next event will be taking place and watch my new you tube video attempt for the beginnings of a weekly art journal prompt.

Here is the info and the link. I hope you will join us for some fun.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1560711264232584/

Where Are We Now?

I am sure everyone has asked this question of another at some point in their life. I know I have. It is a relationship checkpoint question. It is a question used for clarification. It is a question that possesses a tone of longing.

When I decide that it is time to work in my art journal I do not always know what I will write about or what picture will come to life until I begin to write and paint. I feel as if I am merely a vessel or conduit that art flows through. When I enter into an “adventure” I experience it as a meditation or a trance like state and I am not even really sure how I paint what I paint. I am like a medium. I channel art.

If I asked any one of my artist friends who paint, draw, or work with fibres and fabric, they will agree that their medium owns them as well. The doll births itself. Fibres join together in the way they wish. Paint touches the page exactly where it wants to touch. Any artist will know exactly what I mean when I explain this concept. It is intangible, yet it is real.

This new painting is a mix of collage, paint, and doodling. I used acrylic paint, a charcoal pencil, old sheets of music and book pages, matte medium, Krylon workable fixatif, stencils and a permanent fine line marker.

My Friend Randi-Mae wrote a poem to go along with my drawing and a piece of original magical mystical music with the same title as this post that you can listen to on Soundcloud. It is truly beautiful. I hope you enjoy our collaboration. I hope there will be many more!

By Heather Gailey
By Heather Mitchell Gailey
By Randi-Mae Stanford-Leibold
By Randi-Mae Stanford-Leibold

When one door closes…another one opens

coloured door

I am working on a new art series involving beautiful doors from around the world. They are alarmingly beautiful, often barren, and weather-beaten, and all have a mystical feeling about them. As with any closed-door, it is human nature to wonder what is behind it. In this case I would ask that you look intently at each door and try to use your imagination to envision what may lie behind it. Then write about it in your journal. It will be the beginning of a new adventure for you.

THE QUOTE

While working on this project it has prompted me to think about what the statement “when one door closes…means, and in the larger picture, what meaning it conjures up for me. I did some research and searched for the statement on the internet and there I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is actually part of a larger quote by Alexander Graham Bell. The quote is as follows:

“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed-door that we do not see the one which has opened for us”.

How perfectly fitting for my post today!

MY THOUGHTS

This week it is my goal to manifest Abundance, Expansion and Creativity and write about these things in my art journal. I have talked about my plans for success with any and all who will listen and it is an exciting time for me where I feel that I can write my personal history and bring whatever I wish to life. They are many amazing and beautiful doors that are opening up in front of me to offer limitless adventures and happiness. I just have to walk through them.

In preparation for publishing my book this fall I attended a writer’s circle group with a girlfriend Randi-Mae near where I live, and had my mind expanded even further. The creativity and skill in the group made me want to write more. To get us started the organizers challenged us to take a writing prompt and start a story that would be read out to the group when the time was up. The time on the clock was 5 minutes…and five minutes only. Five minutes to get out all you could on the topic at had. It was stressful yet fun.

THE PROMPT: A twinkle in his(hers, theirs) eye.

Every time she looked at him he had a twinkle in his eyes.                                                     He had happy, beautiful, blue, and sparkling eyes.                                                                 He had loving eyes.                                                                                                                 Yes! That was it. He had LOVE in his eyes.                                                                           When he came through the door after work he would look at her with love.                  When he left for work he would look back at her waiting on the doorstep with love,             And in those last moments when they lay staring at each other before drifting off to sleep in each others arms, he would look at her with love.                                                   The twinkle in his eye was pure and it was sweet.                                                                 It was his gift to her,                                                                                                             And each day she received his gift with gratitude and grace.

This is all I got down for 5 minutes, but it was truthful, from the heart and very meaningful to me. When it was my turn to read aloud what I had written, I tried not to cry because at that moment, in those five minutes of moments, I chose to take my eye off the door in front of me and chose to take a peek at the door behind me that had once contained happiness and adventure. For 5 minutes of moments I looked longingly towards that closed-door that closed for a reason. It was a closed-door from the past that I will never open again. Today I know that if it hadn’t closed, I would not have all that I have today. I was grateful then and I am grateful now. I know we all have doors like that behind us. Thanks for letting me share this with you. Now go write in your journal!

THE PROCESS

I probably should tell you about the process of making the doors. They are all 8″ x 10″. The process begins with a close cut paper photo of a door and then I expand on each one using my painting skills. I challenge myself to make it difficult for the viewer to tell where the picture ends and my painting begins.

Here are four that are in various stages of completion. Thanks for reading my post. I welcome your comments and feedback as always.

painted blue doorPhotos/paintings of doors from around the world

pink door

Red and beige door

Grannys Rule!

It is about time I talk about grannys, don’t you think? My grandmothers were truly spectacular, strong, and adventurous women now that I think back about it.

I received a journal in the mail last week from the “Willowing” round robin with a theme of “Stately Ladies”. Immediately I thought about my granny and her sisters on my dad’s side. True stately women with big torpedo tits, blue hair, and stockings. The three sisters were Betty the oldest, Jean the middle, and Beatrice the baby. They made up the fabulous Baker-Boys sisters. All three sisters married to wonderful men, all went to Havergal College in Toronto, all had affluent and a wonderful familial upbringing.

My granny, Beatrice, married John (Nickname Jack, middle name Hales) who unfortunately died when I was one. My Aunt Betty, or Aubie as we called her, married Walter (nickname Gray) Graham who sadly also died before I was born. My Aunt Jean Clarke married Bob who was around for my whole life until early adulthood and ended up being the overseer/protector for all the sisters. These three stately women were strong and lived well into their 80’s and 90’s.

I remember stories of how my Aubie went to Japan with the YWCA during the war and then travelled back many times after that to visit friends she had made while staying there. I spent hours listening to stories of riding elephants in India and numerous trips to mysterious and far off places all over the world. With their husbands gone they decided to take the world by storm and travel, which at the time was not something women did (how times have changed).

So, here is my picture depicting three stately and courageous women. Not a photo realistic picture in any way, but an artistic representation of who they were. A memory embrace for me. I love you. I miss you! Who you were has molded me into who I am today. Thank you!

The fabulous Baker Boys sisters

I miss going to school

This semester I chose to take a break from taking my Bachelor’s of Adult Education prompted by a new job and an unknown workload. Sitting here today on this fine Sunday morning I muse that I miss going to school every Saturday. Crazy eh? I most definitely miss my tiny cohort of 6. I also found out that the Professor that is running the current course is in my top two favourites so far. I seems, some days like a double whammy that I am not able to attend. Yesterday one of my classmates even told me that this course is the easiest one thus far. AHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Don’t tell me that! Oh well…we have to own our choices.

Today I thought I would share with you a journal entry that I made in honour of the last professor I had. She was wonderful and supportive and I thought she was journal entry worthy. She did some amateur acting on the side so I called her our leading lady. This shows you that you can literally make a journal entry for any reason. She reignited my love for learning and discussion and teaching. Thank you Starr!

For this entry I used acrylic paints and stencils to colour the background and then used magazine pictures and words to convey my main thoughts. The writing with my sharpie came after I completed the whole picture. On the last day of class I presented her with a colour photocopy of the page and she was very moved that she had inspired me to make art. Later Starr let me know that I had inspired her to get back to her art as well. Happy!

The Shining Starr 2013
Mixed Media painting by Heather Gailey

 

2 Angels are better than one!

I received a pretty little journal (maybe 6″ x 8″) in the mail last month from someone in our round robin Journal pass group named Beth. The theme of her journal was “things with wings”. Many people had done dragons and such, yet for some reason I focused my artistic energy towards painting these two sweet Angels.

Journal entry by Heather Gailey 2013
Journal entry by Heather Gailey 2013

When I think of Angels I think of all my precious friends and family who have helped me through hard times over the years and in doing so have become part of my success story. For now I am only going to speak about one such Angel. Her name is Nola. Nola and I have been friends now for 34 years. We met back in high school when we were in grade 10. We went through a lot together, and even though we live far apart we still call each other friend.

Why is Nola and Angel, you ask?

When I was going through my separation and my husband first left me I did not know which way to turn. One day, soon after the break up, I decided it was necessary to make to meet with a counselor at the local Social Services office to discuss my situation. I needed to feel more confident in my ability to live, eat, and support my children, and so I went there to speak to someone about my situation and ask for some short-term financial help. I remember it was winter time and very cold outside on the day I went to apply for help. Inside the office I stood behind a woman in the long line of people waiting to speak to a clerk. It shocked me to see that even though it was snowing outside she stood in front of me with broken shoes, no socks, and a torn coat. It seemed as if life had not been kind to her. I was very emotional with all that was going on and when I arrived back home I called Nola and told her what I saw and shared that it was a scary thought that I might end up in that same way. She said to me in such a strong and reassuring voice…”Heather…I will never let that happen to you”. She stood true to her claim and never did. She would take me grocery shopping and helped me afford paint to jazz up my dingy apartment. She was there for me in every way. She never let me fall. Her wings lifted me and helped me through one of the hardest times in my life. This is why she is an Angel. I love you Nola!

Who are the people in your life who are Angels is disguise? How did they help you in a time of need? Have you told them how much you love and appreciate how they have helped you? Maybe today is the day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes I just need to remind myself. Do you?

Sometimes in all the cuffuffle of daily life I sometimes forget who I am. Today I needed to remind myself. I, Heather Gailey, am a colourful and creative creature! Now I have to mail it away because I painted the picture in someone else’s journal.

By Heather Gailey
By Heather Gailey