Bohemian Rhapsody

That is such an iconic song… and once it’s in your head, it won’t go away! I have had such a busy day today… catching up on all the creative things I have been itching to do! I do enjoy knitting, playing with fabric, sewing and all that stuff, but I crave the freedom that being messy with pages, paints and ink brings. I surprise myself sometimes – that I can actually find anything is a miracle! I finished a Julie F-F B-inspired canvas; I started an art journal for recipes I print out that I use regularly; I made backgrounds of another 2 pages in 2 more old books (soon to become journals); I finished off the Green Jester character I started when I created Nick’s page and I journalled this spread for Wednesday Stamper’s challenge – Bohemian Rhapsody, humming the words as I painted. I got so mucky I had to wash my hands 3 times already today! (They don’t like bits of paint on their toast, you see…!)

Is this the Real Life?

All the rubber stamps are my carvings! I love using the dip pen to write with and I think I shall buy some acrylic inks soon, especially white. Then I can write in a more flowing style in both black and white. It seems to be easier to write over lots of layers of acrylic paints and soluble wax crayons too. That’s something I often find problematic. Here’s my green Jester lady…

Oh she’s pretty! I have a boyish character all painted, ready to finish off too. I just seem to have so many things on the go at the moment and only the one pair of hands… ah well! 🙂

I {heart} U xx

This is a 20″ x 16″  (51cm x 40cm) canvas I painted for my daughter to hang in her bedroom. She’s been after a big canvas (or 3) in bright, funky colours for her room but I never managed to be in the right headspace to do it… till a few days ago. I saw a smaller canvas on Tammy’s blog which inspired me in its simplicity. She just used bright Neocolours and water and kept it very simple.

I painted a large canvas with blobs first and doodled and drew and toned, etc. till I had lots of flowers in bold colours. It was too busy for Amber, but I had another idea and used “boxes” for hers, keeping it less cluttered, with more white spaces.

"I heart U"

A little closer…

And again…

And the best bit? She likes it… 🙂

Crazy or inspired?

I wrote recently that I had made peace with the fact that art journalling can be about merely putting pencil, pen, paint to paper and keeping your words, emotions, etc. private, hidden, or even off the page… Here’s what I painted yesterday, in my Long Tall Skinny Journal that I made with Julie Prichard in the Supernova class. I only have one or two pages left unpainted, but I know I can soon make another journal, so I am not too worried!

This was paint over collage, inspired by Tam, from Willowing. She has become rather taken with this technique and it appealed to me, so I tried it out.  Here’s the finished piece, just worked on with pencils and pens and actually, I have journalled around her, in very small writing, but significant! It’s about DH’s reaction to her – he thought it was like seeing a face though a hole and he didn’t like the crazy hair… 😉

Just face it!

I think the colourway, being experimental for me, was influenced – subconsciously – by Matisse images I had seen earlier in the day… I like the colours though, and the addition of blues and yellows to the face is something I might have been able to learn, but it’s more fun to experiment sometimes, isn’t it?

I need to link this to Theme Thursday’s “Crazy” and also to a wonderful post – The Everything Book! – by Julie Fei-Fan Balzer… of  Art Journalling Every Day fame.

Unconditional Love?


I found this on Facebook – via Tam ( – and it’s a definite fingers crossed, please let me win Tam’s prize for my birthday? Please. please!!!

I made this spread about Unconditional Love this evening. I used an old book called The Rose of No-Man’s Land which came from the freebies bin outside a charity shop. It’s about the role of nurses in WWII and I sometimes use the odd page from it here and there. I sprayed a double page last week with the violent pink homemade alcohol ink and left it to dry. It seemed the appropriate colour to use as a background for a page about Love…

Apart from when I did my “structured” sneaky goal-setting exercise back in January, I haven’t really vented in my art journals, until today. Today I had to get down how I feel about the unconditional love of a parent for a child… and it felt really good to spill it! I let off a lot of steam and allowed myself the luxury of purest emotion. After all, it’s my journal spread, isn’t it? In my old book, and my emotions are all over the page…

forever and ever...

I really like the drips which turned into heartstrings… I like the foam stamps and the paint. I like that I put it down on the page and covered a lot of it up, but… I will always know what I wrote and when I see that spread, I will remember why.  That felt so good!

There are some great art journalists taking part – do join in! The prizes are numerous and wonderful – good luck!! 🙂

Feelin’ hot, hot, hot!!

When I was going to dance classes some years ago, we used to dance freestyle Salsa to this great number… and once you start, you can’t stop!! So the Three Muses challenge this week is to use HOT as your theme. I found myself thinking random, disconnected thoughts and then paralleling them in my head with colour and words as I created the background with yellow and orange paint.

In the spirit of using up scraps from my desk and unfinished projects too, I connected the Take a Word (Romance) with these joined up puzzle pieces and they also, being a little racy (hot?), fit the 3M theme… Prompted by Tammy’s (Daisy Yellow in my head) “measure” prompt, I used the quirky eraser stamp I carved on Sunday night along the bottom of the page…

How cool is that? How hot is this? Measure it!

Funny how your mind works, isn’t it?  The bitty specks of black on the page are embossing powder, with which I have been really childish today! I have been reinventing a large canvas*** I wasn’t happy with and I ended up really playing this morning – splattering paint on it and then throwing embossing powder into the paint. Honestly! So I had to see what happened to the fabric flower when I heated it too, didn’t I?  Fine until you overheat it – see page for details… *giggles*

***I am renaming it “Reckless abandon”… Watch this space for photos later this week!!!

Oh and here’s a fun video of that catchy tune…

Do you ever feel?

This week the Three Muses’ Ann has us thinking in black and white, Zetti, retro, whatever! I like black and white a lot, I mean, heaps! I have had these images from a Ten Two Studios Collage sheet for quite some time and I just went with an idea – experimenting a la art journalist!!

Do you ever feel out of Synch?

This page is opposite my colourful alter-ego “Granny” and they couldn’t be more different, could they? When I produce 2 such enormously varying pages in the same evening, in the same book, I wonder how my mind works… Sometimes I even worry about my sanity! (Just sayin’!)

I dug out my white Posca pen for the heavy lettering and used the Sharpie Poster paint pen for the “Do you ever” words. The checkerboard effect is made with a foam stamp in white acrylic paint. Dots are silver Giotto pen. Note the purple (Sharpie) highlights!!

I am thoroughly enjoying the expression of self in the various journals I use. I think this will be one of my best years for creativity and productivity. Thank goodness there is a positive end product to much of the angst in our eveyday lives, eh? I can no longer imagine a life without art and art bloggers.

You can live the life you choose…

… is the tag line of the advert for some ‘special’ insurance for the over 50s and when I saw this picture in the mag, I felt such a strong connection to it, I had to use it. This could will be me when I’m older and more wrinkly (but don’t tell my DD!)…

It resonates with the “vintage” theme at Take a Word this week. There’s no point in me doing something floaty, quaint and pretty because that is so not me – and I wasn’t going to create a page, but… I looked at the definitions of vintage and some were relative to wine-making, retro clothing – 40s to 80s fashion! – and then I thought of my age – 52 – very vintage indeed! Hence the granny on a Harley! I also love Hello Kitty and I used to collect Groovy Chick stuff for DD until she outgrew it. I think all those things are “tags” for me. don’t you?!! 😉

While I’m at it, I found another brilliant blog about art journalling: Tammy has written Art Journalling 101 – a free guide. Check it out for some great tips and ideas (and she’s such a lovely person too!)

Hanging by a thread…

I was over at Traci Bunkers’ blog recently and she has set herself the task of carving a stamp every day over 30 days. I love handcarving stamps and decided to use the reverse of some of my eraser-carvings for a new batch. This is what I came up with this evening:

New stamps...

I’m quite pleased with all of those and I used them in this journal page. I really enjoyed this one – no tears, no angst – feelings under control for a change. I found the image of a mouse hanging onto a balloon in a magazine – he’s trying to reach some cheese in the ad.! I spotted its potential for journalling and used some sheet music scraps and a down-sized black and white photocopy of “Nearly Naomi” to represent me!

... hanging by a thread...

I don’t think it’s quite as balanced as I would like, but I am really happy with what I am achieving lately. I feel like I am making so much progress in my art journals and it’s really lovely to have new stamps to play with again!!

In fact, I have enjoyed this month so much, I have signed up with AJED again for February!! Go Julie! 🙂

Tag-love, or Love-tag?

Just messing with you! Here, because I can, is a tag made from scraps using only what was on my desk at the time this evening,  a “tag” for Wednesday Stamper and there is “Love” in it  for Theme Thursday (white hearts, I love that poppy stamp and my triple Cherry Pie stamp where I have only used the “art” bit…)!


Recycled an old shipping tag which was uneven, so I made a feature of its oddness. I cut it a bit more and then wiped some black paint over it, added some Quin Azo Gold (I have been making journal backgrounds!), stamped the poppies, added the leftover bit from the ATCs a few days ago, stamped the Muse and trimmed it, all the while adding layers to a couple of pages in my art journals.

My hands are filthy, I love this tag, I have 2 more pages to work on and tomorrow is another day. This li’l rottweiler is going to watch a film** and go to bed….

** “Did you hear about the Morgans?” starring Sarah Jessica Parker and Hugh Grant!


It’s really part of day 4 but I am trying to spread these out a bit as some days I have less time and no time at all! That’s life, innit? So here’s another question answered…


The tag is recycled from a T-shirt we bought for DH! Sometimes these “No Fear” labels and tags make the difference between saying yes or no to buying the Tee!!  I know that sounds silly, but, there was a time when that applied, honestly!!

So here, “Love is…” = “No Fear”. The tag and stamps say it all, don’t they? 🙂