Friday, 28 March 2014

Carmella's Cats....(Magical Journal Journey)

The first journal (apart from my own)  I get to create in on this year's Magical Journal Journey is Lisa Di Nunzio's. As explained in my last post, for our theme this year we have all chosen an artist who we admire. Lisa chose Modigliani whose style includes portraits of people with elongated necks and faces, often tilted to the side.
               Now at this point I have to admit to some shoddy research and foolishness on my part. Seeing quite a few 'Modigliani's' cats I misunderstood that they had been inspired by the fact that Modigliani had painted his own cat once. This led me to my idea for Carmella and her cat portrait studio. However, after painting a few cats I discovered I'd misunderstood. Modigliani himself hadn't a painting of his cat in his collection. Instead an artist called Eve Riser-Roberts had created the idea that Modigliani's cat had jumped up on the chair where his subjects had posed and Modigliani had painted him. Well it may have been fiction but it led to my own story and paintings.

My first painting is of Carmella. Bear in mind I don't/can't draw/paint people so this was a big challenge for me:

and if you click to enlarge the image below you can read the story of how she was inspired to open a cat portrait studio:

Here are a three of the neighbourhood cats that begged to be immortalised with her paintbrush:

 Another new part to our challenge this year is that we are all collaborating on the journal covers. These two cheeky chappies are my contribution. I hadn't named them but my son thought one looked like planet earth and the other like the lava that ran through it. I thought this was a clever observation by my ten year old. So maybe they could be named Lava and Gaia???....
This journal was a huge challenge for me. It stretched my abilities, pushed me outside my comfort zone and forced me to face my fears over drawing/painting faces. However, in the end I thoroughly enjoyed it :-) I do feel a little embarrassed about believing that Modigliani had actually painted his cat. However, who knows, maybe he did. Meanwhile, hopefully Eve Riser-Roberts won't mind that her blue Russian cat inspired yet another story and some characterful cats into existence.

Wishing you all a Happy & Creative week and weekend!Kat :-) x

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Wednesday, 12 March 2014

MJJ14 - Creating With Friends!

This March brings the start of a new Magical Journal Journey for 2014. I'm a bit late sharing pictures and it has been far too long since I last posted. I shan't bore you with my reoccurring reasons for struggling. Instead I wish to celebrate the beginning of this new collaboration. This year we have all chosen a favourite artist to inspire our journalling. My chosen artist is Jennifer Judd McGee. My daughter recently introduced her to me and I loved her work.  I also felt her style tied in with some of my own ideas, yet would challenge me greatly.

We are collaborating on our book covers for the first time this year so that we should all end up with front and back covers as a collage of everyones art.  I decided to repurpose an old Scooby-do annual to make the journal covers. I covered the annual's covers in countless layers of Gesso and glue.....

....and then painted/collaged a portion on the front. On the back I left a little of the original cover showing:

On the inside of the front cover I created a drawing that opens up to reveal a type of sign in page that allows each artist to create in a square. When this is finished I imagine it will resemble another piece of collaborative art. I've also included the black and white drawing that preceded the final piece:

The following are from the first two pages and introduction/letter. I have used printed minatures of my art to create a collage tree and do the windows of the house.....

Please do visit the other MJJ ladies,........the links to their respective blogs are on the right. Next I am lucky to work in Lisa DiNunzio (priti.lisa) journal. Her chosen artist is Modigliani and you can see the beginnings of her journal on her blog here. I have to admit I'm quite nervous about attempting to paint portraits. I've never drawn/painted people and I have visions of nursery standard paintings spoiling Lisa's journal. But I shall try my best and hopefully if I approach it with a bit of 'me' and lots of love it will mean something nice to her at least. Or provide her with something permanent to make her laugh when ever she's feeling down ;-) Either way it will be unique, lol :-)

Wishing you all a Happy and Creative week!
Kat :-) X

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