Tuesday, 27 March 2012

'Bon Voyage' to my Round Robin Art Journal

So today I sent out my art journal for a round robin journal swap I'm doing with seven other blogging friends. Here's a peek at what it looks like although the photos don't do the layers and materials used any justice.

Front cover - using wall paper, scrapbook paper, handmade petal paper old damaged children's book and a wooden heart shape 

Back cover - using wall paper, scrapbook paper, old damaged children's      book & a mother of pearl button.

Welcome Pages - including a letter to all the girls participating and an eight page guest book. Using a range of papers, mother of pearl buttons and spun/twisted thread.

My 1st page - an acrylic paint and Pitt pen doodle

Page 2 - A mixed media collage using old party hat, old paintings, acrylic, fabric paint, glitter wrapping and ink. 

I waved my journal goodbye and wished it well on its round the world trip.Wish I could sneak along with it but alas I cost a bit too much to post!

This week is a busy one with the house being decorated and both children performing in an adaptation of Cinderella at their school. It may be difficult to find space, materials and time to create but I shall try my best. Luckily the weather has been sunny the past few days and so I may be able to gain a little refuge from the stress outdoors :-)

Wishing you all a happy & creative week! 

Kat X 
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Thursday, 22 March 2012

Imaginative Procrastination & Getting Out of a Creative Slump...

No, I haven't disappeared off the face of the blogging planet. My time and energy has  been swallowed up by a few days break, followed by (or actually started when away) another round of viruses and then ending recently in a creative slump. You know the kind - you think about creating but are sure no idea is worthy, that your skills are lacking anyway and subsequently become despondent. Suddenly the only creative activity you do is to invent extremely imaginative ways to procrastinate!! Sound familiar?

Luckily, I was invited to join a round robin journal swap which has encouraged me to be creative and nudge the muse back into action. Today I was working on my journal. I covered a plain spiral bound brown card scrapbook album with rich red wallpaper as a base and cover. Then I worked on the first two pages which you can see in progress in the photo above. On the left side I've made a little pocked to hold the letter I'm writing to all participants as a sort of 'welcome to my journal' type of thing. On the right side I am making a mini guest book so that each participant can sign in & introduce themselves. With Creative Everyday's mixed media theme in mind I'm adding buttons/yarn/fabric/brads and similar. The photo above shows the work in progress.

  • What do you do when you feel creatively stuck? 
I've tried many things including - just sitting down to create even if the page in front remains blank. Just showing up can be half the battle. Often I just need rest, time

and mind nourishment to recover. Other times, like now, a new project will encourage my muse to show its face. So thank you Lisa!

On this subject I find creativity coach and writer Eric Maisel's books helpful. I've read 'Van Gogh Blues' and 'Coaching The Artist Within'. Both are an interesting study of the emotional link we have with our creativity and are full off advice that can help us understand the creative mind.

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Friday, 2 March 2012

Blue Mandala - An 'In the spring' allegory for IA & a completion of last week's texture challenge


This week's Inspiration Avenue challenge, set by the lovely Lisa, asked us to use Botticcelli's 'Primavera' ('In the Spring') painting as inspiration for creating allegory, something with a hidden meaning and something from our soul. In my last post (underneath this) I shared a WIP for the IA texture challenge and this mandala painting is the finished result. I'd also like to link this up with Paint Party Friday today and catch up with some bloggy friends there.

The 'tropical' blue was inspired by the gorgeous blue Spring skies we've had this week. Mandalas have been used for centuries as a way of conveying meaning and soul. This is one of the simplest mandalas I've created. Often I like to include lots of fiddly details in my mandalas - but not this time.

Whilst creating this mandala I was feeling the need to strip back, clear my mind and be calm. Interestingly, without consciously making it so, this mandala seems to reflect that inner need. Now looking at it with this in mind: this mandala is also about growing from the inside out, being unafraid of the empty quiet, floating on calming oceans with rhythmic waves, happy making skies and radiating light. But honestly, I didn't think about making meaning as I made this, I just enjoyed getting lost in the act of creating.

Fascinating how art, writing, music or any form of creative expression reveals something of its maker even without their intention. After reading part of my YA novel a friend commented that, despite the story being fantasy fiction, she had learnt so much more about me as a person from my writing. This at first surprised me, almost scared me; I'd known that authors reveal themselves in their fiction but somehow hadn't spent time considering it in a personal context, with me as the author! Silly of me really because of course we put ourselves into everything we create.
  • What does your creative work say about you?
I'm unlikely to get much internet time next week but when I'm back online I shall write a catch up post & share with you what I was up to whilst away from my computer...

Wishing you all a great weekend & a happy week to follow!

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