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

 

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Jumping back into my art with both feet!

Photo taken from http://weheartit.com/Queeni
Photo taken from http://weheartit.com/Queeni

This is a new beginning for me as art is on the move again. I’ve been away for a bit, but now I think it is time to return to my neglected blog and my wonderful readers who I greatly value. Excuse? Do I have one? Don’t we all? Nothing different than usual: kids, life, work, school, etc. Blogging was fun and I definitely feel as if something has been missing lately.

The good thing is that art has been moving behind the scenes and so I have much to share with you. Bet you can hardly wait!!!

Ginger prefers to wear her vegas showgirl headdress even when she is not working

OK..so…crazy title…right?? Sometimes they just come from nowhere.

Here is another 8″ x 10″ Paint and Pass that I received last week in the mail. I got mine back at the same time and I already posted it below – the one with the red bird. Here is a new paint and pass that I am the last artist to add something to before it goes home to the original artist.(tomorrow)

When It arrived it was just a page filled with all types of colourful swishes. No face, no nothing. I wondered for a moment what I would do, and then there it was in the paint…a face. Then the feather idea came – would it be a facinator hat or…? Then the final idea came to me of her being a showgirl who never wants to take off her fabulous headdress. Are you following along with my random thought process? It takes a bit, but you will get used to it. I promise. I am sorry now that I did not scan the before and after like I usually do.

Sioux’s Paint and Pass – Heather Gailey 2012

The artist that had it before me must have added some kind of waxy substance because when I put acrylic paint on the paper it never stuck. That is why the face is not skin tone, because I ended up wiping it all off. Not being able to use paint presented a challenge, so I decided to use my sharpie and my brand new Derwent Art Bars – water-soluble pastels.  They are really fun to use because they go on like a crayon yet you can add water to blend them fully like a paint. The only thing I found is that it is hard to journal over the Art Bars once they are dry because they turn back into a waxy substance, yet do not remain wet or sticky. I highly recommend them.

One of the other artists in the group sewed beads and sequins on to the page and It’s OK because as always…anything goes!

Monday’s Top Tip #2 – Gesso is the Anthem

Gesso is the Anthem…Boy, you’re so handsome

As important as an Anthem is to a country winning a gold Medal in the Olympics…as is Gesso to art journaling.

Always use Gesso (either black or white) to prime your pages before you paint. It gives a good base (tooth) to accept the paint and stops the paper from absorbing too much and wasting your materials. Use especially for acrylic paints on both paper and canvas.

What is Gesso?

Definition taken from the Golden site is as follows:

“GOLDEN Gesso is a flexible, ready-to-use ground that prepares the surface of a substrate to accept paints and provides tooth to promote paint adhesion.”

I couldn’t have said it any better. : )

Here is a good video I found on You Tube explaining how it can be used. Enjoy!!

Hiding Within

Intuitive Art

Over the past year I have received two paintings to work on that were just a beautifully painted background with no visible image showing, and yet an image quickly revealed itself to me in the form of a ballerina and the face of a woman. I thought it was called intuitive art, but I can’t seem to find a name for this type of phenomenon anywhere on the internet. All I know is that each time I can see the faint outline of the image clearly in the existing paint.

Do you know what it is called??

Ballerina – Beth’s Paint and Pass – Heather Gailey

hmmmm….Interesting that both the backgrounds were sent to me by Beth.

Face in the Paint – Beth’s journal – Heather Gailey

All Wild Eyed and Wizardy

Hi there!

I promised to update you in an earlier post (check out the link under this post) when I was sketching out a wizard for one of the journals in the paint and pass on the Willowing “ning” site, and here is the update…FINALLY! I had wanted to show my progress all the way through so you could see the steps I took. But…I didn’t…sorry. My problem is that I get so involved in creating sometimes that I don’t stop to take pictures along the way. I will have to get better at that if I am going to share with you my techniques and tips and how my artistic brain works.

I used acrylic paint and blocked out the larger areas of paint first and then built up from the darkest colour to the lightest. This actual size of the each page is 8″ x 8″.

Here is a couple of pictures to show close up and far away shots of the wizard. I still have more detail work to do on his beard and on the background.  I may write something on the background, but I am not sure at this point in the process. I suppose there will be one more photo shoot or scan before I send it off to the artist Kalona. I will see you then! I am aiming to mail it to the next person on the list by Wednesday, because I have been pondering on the price of fish…and putting off completing this wizard for far too long!

Copyright 2012 – Heather Gailey
Copyright 2012 – Heather Gailey

This is probably one of the few times I have painted a man’s face and I think I did a pretty good job. I do seem to be much more confident painting women’s faces though. Weird! Do you have that problem? Let me know.

Rainbows are all around us!

Here is a new journal entry that I completed tonight to take with me as part of my display for the networking event next week. I used one of the new journals, acrylic paint, vintage collage papers, matte medium, washi tape, and my sharpie. It was done in no time at all…in fact…I forgot how much fun it was to get messy with paint and just let the ideas flow.

The other day I went out my front door and onto the lawn to see that it had been raining. There in front of me was a divine rainbow that formed a huge magnificent arc. I stood there staring with my mouth open because it was so beautiful. The colours were so vivid I would have sworn that if I walked down the street I would have been able to capture the pot of gold. It was WOW!! Sooooo…I made a journal entry about that day.

Keep your eyes open for the beautiful things around you this week as they are all around us and help us to put things into perspective.

 

Painting the family

Well I am finally finished my entry in Leila’s journal. As I mentioned on another page, it was very hard to be the person to complete the first page. It was a lot of pressure to pick a great topic and make an excellent piece of art. These skinny pen people have shown up in my own day-to-day art journal on a number of occasions and I thought…why not bring them to life again in this entry.

The theme of Leila’s journal was Dreams and Treasures. The first thing that came to mind when deciding what my entry would be is that I am dreaming of a happy blended family. It was the first thing that popped into my mind and therefore I thought I would go with it. If anyone else out there reading this has a blended family, they will know that this wish or dream is sometimes elusive. None the less I am wishing that the dream will come true for us some day.

The pen and ink drawing depicts myself on the right with my two children and my partner on the left with his two. I realized afterwards that none of us seem to be particularly happy. I guess this is our reality at the moment. Some days are better than others of course.

I used my fine sharpie marker to outline my pencil drawings and then used water-colour crayons to fill in the figures. After colouring the individual blocks in I went over the pencil with water and added some acrylic wash to those areas that I wanted the colours to be more vibrant. I am not sure why I filled the background up with bubbles. They are filled in with a clear acrylic shimmer paint which does not register well in the scan unfortunately. All I can think of is that I LOVE blowing bubbles – even at my age.

Oh yes! I should say that I framed up the drawing with a border that was meant to suggest a wooden picture frame. It is not realistic looking because it was meant to be just a suggestion of a frame. I still have to write what my dream is somewhere on the picture frame element. Maybe in the form of a metal plate like you might find on some pictures at the bottom. I am going to try to finally mail it off tomorrow as I have been holding onto it for a bit too long. Must keep the journal pass flowing. Must! must! must!

Another journal has come my way

Another journal has come my way from one of the group members who lives in England. Her name is Kalona and her journal theme is Magic and Mysteries I believe. I have only roughed out a sketch of what I am going to do. I decided to do a wizard and he will be completed using acrylic paints and prisma colour pencil crayons. I originally thought that I would portray him standing with lightning coming out of his hands and staff, but he told me was a tired wizard and wanted to be portrayed in an more gentle light. Funny how your art decides what it wants to be. I used to have that happen to me all the time when I was designing and making art dolls. I wanted a certain doll to have purple hair and there was a fight and she ended up with red hair…and NO…I am not “off my rocker”. So here he is. I have not thought of a name for him as yet. Completion to be saved for next week when all the grad ceremonies are over. I will post more pictures as I get closer to completing him and then a final reveal before mailing on to the next member.

The Wizard