Finished Spread: Radioactive

This spread was created an in an altered book, Odysseys and Photographs (2007), and was specifically produced onto these pages due to the unsettling imagery that was already printed on the spread. Somehow these images, unaltered and bizarre, seemed to speak to me in a time of frustration. The photos on these pages originally displayed a restrained lab mouse being injected with a steel syringe, and a man controlling a robotic arm in order to place makeup onto a subject’s face—strange, right?  I took the liberty of adding my own peculiar imagery, paired with a color palette inspired by the word visible on that syringe: radioactive. Though it may appear a bit eerie, I actually really like how the spread turned out!

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“Radioactive” Art Journal Spread

As I’ve mentioned before, I often find that my art journal spreads are more chaotic and detailed whenever I create while angered or distressed. These types of emotions affect me strongly, but I am also able to pour out frustrations onto a journal spread more easily. It’s therapeutic for me, almost as if I’m removing the negativity—piece by piece—with every stroke and line. This spread has been halfway finished since the end of last year, but I somehow found the inspiration to complete it. I began this spread when I was overwhelmed by some feelings of anger, and the subject matter definitely does not hide this!

 

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Radioactive” Closeup, Left

Although this spread may not depict the most cheerful of illustrations, I was honestly pleased with line work that I created when drawing these skulls. These illustrations are studies of northern american rodent skulls, sketched with a soft lead (Faber Castell 8B lead, jumbo) and inked with a black brush pen (Kuretake No. 7). The original drawings were found in a vintage nature book, a gift to me, and my attempt at replicating them was almost perfect! I’m slowly advancing my drawing skills, and am always delighted whenever I discover that I’m making progress.

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“Radioactive” Closeup, Right Top

This spread was started in order to deal with intense negative feelings, but I was able to achieve a sense of accomplishment for the illustrations! The positive feeling of success in my abilities as an artist outweighed my anger. Although I don’t like to leave art journal spreads unfinished, my change in disposition was probably why I was able to close the book on this spread for so long. Creating in my art journal is always such a positive experience for me, and it’s one of the reasons that I love to share this niche hobby with others! I promise you, I haven’t been keeping an art journal for 13 years without benefiting from doing so!

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“Radioactive” Closeup, Right Bottom

This journal spread might be finished, but there are about 10 more in this altered book that are only just started! I’ll be working on some of them this weekend, but I’ll definitely be starting a new art journal spread during my Instagram live stream on Sunday at 8 pm EST. If you’ve got the time, don’t forget to join me! Until then, feel free to drop me a line in the comments below!

 


 

Disclaimer: I have recently become an Amazon and Get Messy affiliate. Amazon links and Get Messy links are affiliate links. I will receive a small portion of the sale if you use these links to purchase the art supplies or subscribe to the Get Messy community for an annual membership. You support this blog and my ability to continue making art through the use of these links! (And also gain my unending gratitude!!!) All other links included in this post are not affiliate links; they are included for educational purposes and for your convenience.

 

Floral Tutorial & Freebies

It’s the very first FREEBIE WEDNESDAY, and I could not be more delighted to share what I have in store for you today! If you follow me on Instagram, you probably saw the hand drawn floral pattern that I shared last week. It was inspired by this Get Messy season, Art 101! Last week, my very first post and tutorial as a Creative Team member went live on the private site. (You can totally check out the site and see if you’d be interested in becoming a member by clicking HERE.) I was extremely excited to see what it would inspire throughout the Get Messy community!! The feedback and art that came out of it was 100% awesomeness! Because of all the pen play happening, I was inspired to create some florals as a simple and quick way to get my pen to paper. The result was unexpectedly beautiful! One flower became two, two became three, and suddenly I had filled an entire page with a gorgeous pattern!

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Partially Drawn Floral Pattern from 3/9/2017

If you look through my art, you’re bound to see a lot of abstract shapes, silhouettes, eyes, and animals, but I tend to steer clear of florals. While I find flowers lovely (there’s a fresh bouquet on my desk right now), they just don’t seem to be a good fit with the imagery that I usually produce. However, these roses are special to me. My grandmother was absolutely obsessed with roses, and taught me how to draw them at a very young age. This rose shape is very close to the way that my grandmother taught me, starting in the center and building petals outward with overlapping sections. The image below is a quick tutorial on how I draw these roses, even though—if we’re being honest—they look quite a bit more like begonias or carnations.

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4 Step Rose Drawing Tutorial

As you can see in the image below, I remark my lines two or three times so that there is more detail and character to each petal. This makes the edges of each petal appear folded and more natural. You’re more than welcome to try out this design and add it to your archive of floral drawing knowledge! Its just as easy as the simple daisy illustration that so many of us are guilty of doodling! It only took me about thirty minutes to fill an entire 8.5″ by 11″ page. The pen used, as seen below, was one that I received in my Art Snacks subscription box in July ’16. The fine tip, a 0.3 mm, and smooth gel ink  a pleasure to work with! It is the Pentel brand Arts® Hybrid Technica used on 67 lb vellum Bristol paper.

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Finished Floral Pattern from 3/9/2017

With the wonderful power of technology, I was able to color in the flowers with soft pink and purple hues and invert the line to whites. (This created a pattern that I liked so well it is now the wallpaper for my phone.) I also recolored the flowers with a more traditional red, and  then adjusted the hue to green, which made the flowers appear to be succulents.

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Preview of Rose Pattern Freebies

All three of these recolored patterns and the drawing in black and white are available to you for download for your personal use! They are HD images available as full page PDFs. I advocate using them as collage material for your own arty goodness!! Just click the links below to print and/or download the PDFs! You can print them out, collage them in your art, or use them as a new desktop wallpaper! Just get creative and have fun. The only thing that I ask is that you not redistribute these freebies or claim an unaltered version as your own. You do not need to credit me if you use these freebies in your art, but I definitely wouldn’t turn down a shout out!

Click links to download…
Roses Coloring Page (Black & White): PDF Here
Roses Collage Paper – Pink & Purple: PDF Here
Roses Collage Paper – Green Succulents:  PDF Here
Roses Collage Paper – Red: PDF Here
Entire Collection: PDF Here

 


 

Disclaimer: I have recently become an Amazon and Get Messy affiliate. Amazon links and Get Messy links are affiliate links. I will receive a small portion of the sale if you use these links to purchase the art supplies or subscribe to the Get Messy community for an annual membership. You support this blog and my ability to continue making art through the use of these links! (And also gain my unending gratitude!!!) The Art Snacks website and all other links included in this post are not affiliate links; they are included for educational purposes and for your convenience.

Live Recap: March Art Snacks & “Embracing New Waters”

I’ve been doing a live stream on Instagram (@emmykait) once a week for a month now, and the experience of sharing my art journaling process has been amazing! Being live on the internet is a totally new experience for me. Although I found it nerve wracking to do my first live session, the art journaling community on Instagram is so friendly and supportive. I don’t believe that I could have picked a better site to do live streaming through! I have met some genuinely talented and kind individuals though Instagram since going public with my profile in April of 2016, and with risk has come reward!

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Setup for Instagram Live Streaming

Yesterday’s Instagram live stream (3/12/2017) consisted of unboxing my March Art Snacks subscription box, and of creating an art journal spread from beginning to almost completion. For this live stream, I was working in my smallest art journal: a pocket size Moleskine brand sketchbook with 111 lb cream colored paper. This month’s Art Snacks box held the following items, as shown in the image below:

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Art Snacks Subscription Box Contents for March 2017

I was very pleased with the contents of this month’s Art Snacks, which was valued by the subscription company at a total of $32.05. After opening and testing these supplies on camera, I used the watercolors and paint brush to coat the top half of my spread; I also drew randomly with the pencil on the pages. After using these these supplies, I decided to try to finish creating the art journal spread using only supplies that I had received in this and other Art Snacks boxes! With the exception of my collage material, my favorite matte medium (Golden brand), and some grey acrylic paint (also Golden brand), I succeed in this personal challenge. The following image is of what the art journal spread looked like by the end of my live stream!

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“Embracing New Waters” Work In Progress

Even though Instagram only allows it’s users to stream live for an hour, it’s possible to go live again immediately. When my live stream automatically ended, I was tearing my collage material, about to affix it to the spread.  I came back online for a few minutes, though, as I was in the process of adding the collage elements and wanted the live broadcast to end with my journal spread being close to finished. Although I absolutely loved the results of my journal spread as created during the live stream, I didn’t deem it finished. I prefer to alter any collage material that I use, and also wanted to add some black lines to the page. The image below is of the spread after I altered the collage material and added more details to the pages. I would now consider it finished! It is titled “Embracing New Waters.” Aside from the Golden brand paint, all art supplies pictured have come from Art Snacks!

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“Embracing New Water” Completed, Surrounded by Art Supplies Used

As you can see in the images above and below, I added a lot of detail to the swimmer pictured in my collage material. I added outlines around the body in white and black. I then mixed the Terra Rosa watercolor with some of the gray acrylic paint to create wild wavy hair, using the red and black markers to detail. The boldest addition to this spread is the thick black lines radiating from the image of the girl, highlighted with white watercolor paint, which was not diluted, but rather straight from the tube. The inspiration for these expressive lines comes from a tutorial by the talented Julia Thomas via the Get Messy blog!

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“Embracing New Waters” Completed, Closeup of Center

This spread came together in about an hour and a half; I could not have completed it so quickly were it in a larger journal. I also like to use this Moleskine for live sessions as it can comfortably fit within the view of the camera without loosing much detail onscreen. I have used my larger altered book journals during past live streams, and will probably continue to do so on occasion, but find this Moleskine becoming my go-to for art journaling during these hour long stream sessions! Thankfully, I have amazingly supportive parents that watch a lot of my live streams, so I get frequent feedback on what works and what doesn’t. (What I mean to say is that my parents think I’m cool—but they’re also pretty cool, so I’ll take the complement.)

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“Embracing New Waters” Completed, Closeup of Left Side

Hopefully, you were able to join me for this week’s live stream, but if you weren’t, fear not! I will be streaming every Sunday at 8 pm EST, working in my art journal for all to see! I hope that you can join me sometime, and I especially hope that you’ll be making art with me, chatting about how awesome art journaling is, and letting me know if you have any questions about the many art supplies that I seem to be hoarding. Also, feel free to drop me a line by commenting here on the blog with any questions—or just to say hi!

If you’d like to read more about Art Snacks, check out my blog posts for the unboxing of the following months from 2016: May, June, August, and October. All you have to do is click the month mentioned, and you’ll be there!


 

Disclaimer: I have recently become an Amazon and Get Messy affiliate. Amazon links and Get Messy links are affiliate links. I will receive a small portion of the sale if you use these links to purchase the art supplies or subscribe to the Get Messy community for an annual membership. You support this blog and my ability to continue making art through the use of these links! (And also gain my unending gratitude!!!) The Art Snacks website and all other links included in this post are not affiliate links; they are included for educational purposes and for your convenience.

Announcing: NEW Schedule & Freebies!

I’ve been gone from the blog, but only because I’ve been working SO hard to share more and better content with YOU! Yes, you. No, seriously, you. Okay, okay, I’ll stop being creepy and give you the specifics…

I’ve been recently doing live streaming on my Instagram (@emmykait) every Sunday, and the feedback has been so inspiring that I’ve re-realized my passion for sharing and encouraging others to create! Because of that, I’ve jumped back behind my desk, and developed a NEW schedule for this blog.

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Schedule for MadeByEmK.com

Here is the breakdown:

  • Sundays at 8pm EST, I’ll be live streaming the start of a new art journal spread; on rare occasions, I may also work on other (perhaps more impressive, even) art. Live streams will last for at least one hour.
  • Mondays, I’ll be HERE on the blog with a new post, recapping all of the lovely things that came out of the Sunday live stream. Monday’s post will include photos of the artwork and a quick discussion on the tools, techniques, and/or questions that I answered during the live stream.
  • Wednesday is the day that you definitely don’t want to miss!! I’ll be sharing an in depth discussion on my favorite tools, techniques, or supplies. I’ll also be giving you free printables for you to have and use! Which means: WEDNESDAY IS FREEBIE DAY! 
  • Thursdays will be art show and tell day here on the blog. I’ll be sharing with you one of my newly completed art journal spreads or other artwork! If you’re a fellow Get Messy member, then you’ll probably want to swing in on Thursday, because many of my pages are inspired by the prompts and tutorials created by my fellow Creative Team Members!

I’ll be working diligently in my studio on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. Although I won’t be posting here on the blog, feel free to check Instagram and my Instagram story, because I am constantly updating my social media followers on my artistic happenings. I also LOVE to interact on Instagram, so feel free to say hello or drop me a line!

If you have questions about commissions, want me to come guest blog for you, or anything of the like, please use the “Contact” tab at the top of this website, or click HERE.

This post contains an affiliate link to the Get Messy website. If you click the link above and sign up for the Get Messy community for a year, then I will receive a small portion of the sale to help support my artistic journey, including the upkeep of this blog. However, it is available on a month-to-month basis, and even per season: if you choose to go that way, I receive no payment, but totally support your interest because I love Get Messy, and want you to enjoy its benefits the way as it best fits you!!

Finished Spread “Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me”

Anyone on social media knows that posting a political opinion is like opening the flood gates for a tsunami of angry retorts, incomprehensible arguments, and approval from the same four people who always agree with you. I don’t know about you, but it seems to me to be bad business to engage in things that accomplish so little; it’s very difficult to have meaningful conversations or debates via social media. That being said, there are just some things that shouldn’t even cause a debate, such as equality and human rights. Sure, it’s “political,” but  wanting to deny anyone equality or human rights just seems down right deplorable.

Speaking of human rights—bet you saw this one coming—women (and some men) in the USA just marched down the streets of Washington DC wearing glorious pink hats to the tune of equality. No one was arrested, no one vandalized their surroundings, and no one asked for more than what they’re due. I did not march, due to prior obligations, but I did have to listen to men talk about how dumb and unnecessary the Women’s March on Washingon was—but, like a good little woman, I held my tongue. Or perhaps they held it for me? Actions speak louder than words, and my actions conformed to a society that better women than I are trying to revolutionize. How ridiculous must our world be that I feel uncomfortable standing up for my own rights?

After that painful experience, I came home and did the one thing I know to be most comforting: created art. The following images are photographs from an art journal spread, which flowed from me so quickly that I could feel the words exploding in the paint. I screamed through collage and pens, and spoke the words that I wish I had when those men told me that my thousands of sisters marching in the streets could accomplish nothing. I cried with ink, my strokes spitting back vile toxins of doubt, which these people had tried to drown me in. I never believed them, but it still hurt to have that venom within me. And that is why this spread is called, “Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me.”

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Art Journal Spread

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Right Top Detail

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Right Bottom Detail

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Right Side Detail

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Center Detail

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Center Detail 2

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“Don’t Watch My Mouth For Me” Left Bottom Detail

Giveaway! 1 Year of Get Messy & Watercolor Set

To help me start off my year right as a Creative Team Member for the beautiful community that is Get Messy, I have been been granted the privilege to host a giveaway for an entire free year subscription of Get Messy to a lucky random winner! To make things even more fun, I’ve decided to also giveaway a set of Prima brand watercolors!! The watercolors that I discussed last blog post (click HERE to read) have made me so happy, and I really want to give another individual the opportunity to work with them! This giveaway is totally free and taking place on my Instagram. Details below!!!

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So how do you enter?
• Set 1: Go to my Instagram page.
• Step 2: Follow me @emmykait and @getmessyartjournal.
• Step 3: Like the photo that says GIVEAWAY! (It looks just like the one above.)
• Step 4: Comment on that photo by telling my your favorite art supply.
• Step 5: Wait until I announce a winner on Wednesday 25 January 2016.

This giveaway is located on my Instagram: @emmykait and admission will end 23 January 2017, 11:59pm EST.


PS: I am now an affiliate through Get Messy and am able to receive a small payment in return for you becoming a Get Messy annual member. By clicking the link above and purchasing an annual membership, you are supporting me and this blog—and I am beyond thankful if you choose to do so! That being said, I know that not everyone wants to jump into a whole year membership, so no hard feelings if you just want to try it out for a month. The community is awesome though, and I really think that if you enjoy art journaling, you’ll love being a Get Messy member too! Here is a review that I wrote about the community before becoming a Creative Team Member of affiliate. The site also offers a free class for you to get a taste of the things offered in the community. You can check out the Get Messy official Instagram, and see if that doesn’t get your creative spark…well..sparked!

 

Review: Prima Watercolor Confections

I don’t know what got under my skin this past week, but I suddenly needed to own a set of watercolors. I have hundreds of markers, dozens of acrylics, 100+ gel pens, and a growing collection of inks, but somehow I’d yet to empty my bank account in the name of colorful watercolor half pans. It simply’d not do!

I have so many different type of water soluble supplies, most of them professional quality, but I realized that the only decent water color set I own is one that had been given to me about 8 years ago, and it’s withered to almost nothing. After a little research, I decided upon a pretty set of half pan water colors by the company Prima, as they seemed affordable and included an array of colors that is both varied and beautiful!

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4 Different Sets of Prima Brand Watercolor Confections With Sketchbook

I have this things with art supplies: if I don’t go all out and get a set, then I feel restricted by my palette, and become blocked. When this happens, I either end up not using them or completing the set almost instantly. This an expensive problem to have, but when it comes to art supplies, it’s not like I’m not going to use them if I have “too many,” so I tell myself it’s okay to just get sets. (That, and I like to complain about this problem to my husband, who then just tells me to just buy it, so who am I to argue?) The nice thing about the Prima brand Watercolor Confections is that they are currently available in 5 set of 12 colors, which means the entire collection allows for one to have 60 different color options pre-mixing.

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Wrappings from Individual Half Pans

1 of the 5 sets, however, includes only metallic colors (the newest set, the Shimmering Lights palette) which is not something that I would use regularly. I did not purchase Shimmering Lights until after I had used these 4 sets, so I cannot comment on it. The 4 sets that I did purchase include “The Classics,” “Tropicals,” “Decadent Pies,” and “Pastel Dreams.”

Each set includes:
• 12 Individually wrapped half pans of watercolor paint
• 1 watercolor tin (holds 12 half pans or 6 whole pans)
• 1 pre-printed and annotated swatch paper (fits in tin)

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Prima Watercolor Confections Swatches in Sketchbook

The Classics set includes basic primary colors, secondary colors, magenta, grayscale colors, and a brown. This set is perfect for an individual who is looking to own only one set, as it includes most necessary colors for the mixing of a complete pallet. The Tropicals set includes bold tertiary colors and variations thereof, as well as a warmer brown color. The Decedent Pies set consists of four neutral colors, four metallic colors, and four darker tertiary colors. The Decedent Pies set is best for portrait artists due to it’s flesh tones and colors that seem to be perfect for eye colors. The Pastel Dreams set seems to be pastel versions of many colors included in the Tropicals set, which one would be unable to achieve without white, a color only included in The Classics set.

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The paint in each set is assigned a number as relating to all colors in the Watercolor Confections series. The Classics include colors 1-12, Tropicals include colors 13-24, Decadent Pies include colors 25-36, and Pastel Dreams include colors 37-48. These numbers are printed onto paper (seen above) and is wrapped around each half pan of paint. Before purchasing, I read a review that recommended purchasers of these sets to write each color’s assigned number on the bottom of the individual pans, and am passing that information along as fantastic advice!! Having the number permanently attached to each color allowed for me to reorganize my pallets as I saw fit, without questioning which colors came from which sets.


I started by removing all half pans from  the sets, and based on the color of the papers wrapping each half pan, I organized the colors in a ROYGBIV fashion, keeping the pink colors with the red hues. Once in place, I unwrapped each color, writing the assigned number with a sharpie onto the bottom of each individual pan. This can be seen below. If you purchase a watercolor confections set, I recommend this immensely!
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As previously mentioned, I don’t have a lot of dry pan watercolor experience, so I cannot compare these to many other watercolor sets, but this is what I can tell you from using and researching these sets: the colors mix well, are highly pigmented, are not chalky when dry if used on watercolor paper, and are rated by the manufacturer to be extremely lightfast. Once used, many of the colors have a textured consistency after drying, but I have yet to notice any texture in the watercolor once made wet and in use; this texture may not look too great, but it seems inconsequential. This texture can be seen in the image above and below. Another thing that I questioned was the sizing of these pans, but as someone who has only owned large watercolor sets, the tiny half pans seemed almost too small to use. However, after a couple days spent playing with the Watercolor Confections, the fact that these half pans are slightly smaller than a US quarter is no longer an issue.

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I swatched each color onto the papers that came with each set, but crossed out the numbers, as my tins are no longer in the order of which they arrived. This paper is sturdy, but has an odd amount of sheen to it for paper destined to be watercolored upon. I recommend using these in the tins, as they fit and are pretty accurate to color, but I also recommend swatching each color in a sketchbook or on the paper with which they will be most frequently used. photo-jan-12-1-13-04-am

As you can see in the photo above, I have mapped out my tins based on hues, keeping a record of the original color collections in my watercolor sketchbook. This way, if I discover I’m running out colors from a specific set, I will know which on to reorder. Having swatches in the tin and in my sketchbook is convenient for later work, but I also decided to label the exterior of each tin in order to dertermine which tins contained which hues without needing to open each pan set.

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Instagram Takeover!

This week is pretty cool for me, as I’m taking over the Get Messy Art Journal official Instagram, @getmessyartjournal. Until January 8th, I’ll be curating the Instagram with photos of my own art, re-posts of Insta photos that use the hashtag #getmessyartjournal, and be responding to questions and comments on any of the photos that I post! I’m still going to be active at @emmykait, my everyday Instagram home, but I’ve been hoarding photos of my art journal spreads specifically for the Get Messy takeover! Here’s a little taste of the photos I’ll be posting on the ‘gram:

This honor was bestowed upon me as a Get Messy Creative Team Member (which I totally posted about HERE), and I was so lucky to be the first to takeover in 2017 and I got to post the 1,000th Instagram photo for Get Messy! I know it’s not like I won a world series, but seeing as how my sports knowledge starts and ends with the fact that “World Series” is a sportsball term, this is way cooler to me!  I quit my 9 to 5 at the end of 2015 in order to pursue my passion of creating, and it seems like that choice was made with perfect timing! Working with Get Messy this year is a dream come true, and starting it off with this takeover is just the icing on the cake! I hope you come visit me there this week!!

Links!

Announcing: The Vision Oracle Deck

I’ve been so distant lately, but I have so much art stuff in progress that it’s almost overwhelming to be able to write (blog?) it all down! I’m working on Get Messy stuff for next year (if you missed it, I’m part of the 2017 creative team) and videos for about 4 different projects. But honestly, what’s had me obsessively occupied is my newly finished project: The Vision Oracle Deck! 

The Vision Oracle Deck Announcement


After going through my most recently finished art journal, I realized that I’ve had such a wild ride in 2016! I’ve also been getting more and more into my tarot and oracle decks—especially after taking Vanessa Oliver-Lloyd’s beautiful class, “Totems.” (Available for purchase HERE)—and I realized that a combination of art journaling and oracle cards was a total possibility! After many long nights behind the lens of my camera and behind the keys of laptop, I have finally finished photographing my journal, editing photos, and curating what I think will be my absolute favorite oracle deck! 

Example From The Vision Oracle Deck: “Curiosity” Card


After throwing a quick post onto Instagram, I recieved great feedback!  Because of this, I’ve also decided to get a few extra copies of this deck, call it an inventory, and make it available online! I don’t know how many likeminded folks will find it, want it, and love it, but I know for a fact that it’ll make one person pretty happy just to hold in her hands! (If you guessed me, you were right.) I can not wait to receive the cards, as I’m having them professionally printed and shipped to me, but I’ll let you know when they get here!! 

I’ll place these cards for sale on Etsy, and announce they’re availability here on the blog as well as on my Instagram!

Huge News! Art Journaling News!

I’ve finally taken a break from jumping up and down in excitement to write this post, so let me start out by saying I’m ecstatic to be telling you all my good news!! Are you ready? For 2017, I will be pushing myself to be as creative as possible for my new position as a Creative Team member! I’ve been chosen to be a part of the Get Messy Creative Team for next year, and will be creating videos, tutorial posts, and sharing images of my art work for a group of 1500+ beautiful people who share my biggest passion: art journaling!

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Art journaling is the one thing that has been with me for the majority of my life, before I knew that such a thing even had a name. I could not be happier to share my love of arting between the pages of a bound sketchbook, altering coffee table books, and getting my hands colorfully messy!  I feel like my artistic style has come such a long way in the past couple of years, and finally defining my method of creating—with certain techniques, supplies, and tons of emotion—has not only helped me find my artistic voice, but is now letting me share it with others. (It sounds goofy, I know, but I’m in happy-shock, so please bare with me.)

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A Sampling From My Art Journal Collection

When I was younger, before “art journaling” was defined to me, I called my art journals “my souls,” because that’s what it feels like: pouring my soul onto the pages of these once empty pages. While I may not be an emotional exhibitionist, I’ve always considered myself an open book, and oddly enough, it seems like sharing my “souls” is allowing me to prove it. So, let’s start with my most recently finished spread, one inspired by another Get Messy Creative Team member: Vanessa Oliver-Llyod, aka Dans Mon Crane!

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“Altered Dimension” Art Journal Spread

Vanessa hosted an hour long live event on the private Get Messy Facebook page last week, and while I wasn’t able to participate in the fun during the event, I happily re-watched the video at my desk, following along with her process. I can’t say that this spread turned out looking even remotely close to Vanessa’s beautiful journal pages, (which you should totally check out HERE) but I’m still very happy with my end product! It was so odd to not begin my spread with blocking in shapes of acrylic paint, but starting as Vanessa did instead. I stuck true to all of the suggestions made during the live event, but I just couldn’t stop myself from making all of the wild doodles and drippys that I so love to add to my journal spreads! Her ideas plus my ideas turned up making a pretty unique spread.

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“Altered Dimension” Close Up, Bottom Left

My spread ended up featuring a poker card, the queen of diamonds, which was altered to be far creepier than originally intended; her skin was painted green, her hood turned into a homage to The Bride of Frankenstein, and a third eye added to her chakra point. I’m not complaining by any means, as I fan-girl over weird and creepy pretty frequently, but the contrast of theme from that which was created during the live event is pretty extreme. The photo below is a close up of this altered card, presented next to a queen of hearts from the same deck for a better understanding of how much altering occurred.

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“Altered Dimension” Comparison to Unaltered Playing Card

I had so much fun with this exercise, switching up my process, and doing new things in my art journal that I would have never done without Vanessa’s input! I wasn’t alone either, as this exercise got a lot of the Get Messy community members in the mood to create. Seeing everyone’s pages was pretty awesome, as each member applied the suggestions to art journal spreads while guided by intuition and staying true to their style! As you can see in the close up’s below, I also didn’t stray too far from my usual aesthetic.

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“Altered Dimension” Close Up, Top Left

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“Altered Dimension” Close Up, Top Right

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“Altered Dimension” Close Up, Bottom Right

I’m so excited to not only work with Vanessa, but continue learning from her—and my new team members—over the course of this next year! If you haven’t joined this group, feel free to visit the Get Messy website and check out the FREE class, so that you can see if it’s right for you. I’d LOVE to see you there!! (Note: Even if you decide not to join, I’ll still be sharing a lot of stuff here, and I’m not going anywhere!)