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.

Art Journal Speed Process: “Enlighten the Untransformed”

I (finally!) got around to finishing a spread that I’m currently recording the process of, and I’m sharing it with you today! I don’t know how excited about this you are, I’m pretty stoked, because it’s a rarity that I can focus myself long enough to make sure all aspects of a page get recorded. If you’re like me and leave your art laying out, you probably find yourself stepping past, only to double back in order to make a mark or two. I often can’t cram everything onto a page in one sitting, simply because a completely detailed art journal spread usually takes about six or more hours to finish. I know many other artists can bang pages out in just an hour or less, but my aesthetic is all about clutter and chaos, so I love lots of little designs and details…which can take a LOT of time.

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This journal page, which is all about trying to enlighten those who are unwilling, is both a statement about myself and others. I think that everyone should strive to have an open mind and an open heart, and even though many people believe themselves to be ‘open minded,’ I’m not quite sure they’re correct. The Socratic paradox says that a wise man knows that he knows nothing, and to accept that you have ignorance is to accept that there is always more to learn and understand. This page speaks both to my personal beliefs and to my political beliefs. As an American, I think that this message is especially relevant right now, during the 2016 presidential election.

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Although this page was not specifically created in response to anything, this is one of those spreads in which the meaning developed as it took form. I’m a strong believer that inspiration comes most often when we aren’t looking for it, and sometimes my muse doesn’t speak until I’ve already started working; this was one of those times.

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Anyways, lets get past the heavy stuff and enjoy how our minds can take the ugly and form into something beautiful, which, in this case, is providing me with reason to reflect and create! Being able to create another art journal spread (where I can meditate and breathe easy for a while) is great comfort for my anxious mind. I invite you to watch this process video, take a moment to unwind, and even play in your own journal! Enjoy! (If the video below doesn’t work for you, click HERE.)

 

Finished Spread: Catcher of Dreams

For a week, I’ve been out of arting commission, babying a bruised hand. Thankfully, none of my knuckles retained any of that lovely plum hue that both inspired and impaired. I’m not at full capacity, but I decided to take a peek at the Get Messy blog, and couldn’t help myself from shifting from computer to art journal. One of the many lovely prompts from this past week recommended using the imagery of a dream catcher, and while I’m not one to interpret prompts too literally, I decided to have a go at it. Little did I know, my inability to think in geometric shapes would cause me to spend hours trying to figure out how to draw the netting of the catcher. That being said: I’m 99.9% happy with the finished net design of my dream catcher! (My favorite dream catcher, a heart shaped frame wrapped in teal leather, was the only one that followed me into my teenage years; after this drawing experience, I thank myself for not attempting to draw it and it’s complicated net work!)

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“Catcher of Dreams” Art Journal Spread: Upper Left

As someone who doesn’t include a lot of text within the spread of my journals, I can be pretty picky with the imagery that ends up on my pages, but a dream catcher does speak to the memories of my youth. Living in an area where sacred burial mounds and beautiful Native American earthworks speckle the landscape, I was always aware of native culture, especially because of the the annual festival of Native culture that is held in my hometown. I was afflicted with night terrors as a child, and the ceiling above my bed held as many dream catchers —mostly from that festival—as I could ration for the thumbtack holes, like constellations, above my head. For this reason, my spread also portrays an eye (on of my favorite images) crying, the coloring mimicking the dream catcher and its blue dangling strings, a representation of the fear and panic that sleep can cause me.

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“Catcher of Dreams” Art Journal Spread: Upper Right

I also liked that using a dream catcher in this spread would date it for me, as the Dakota Access Pipeline protest continues to dominate the news. With the beautiful people of Flint, MI still struggling with ruined water pipelines, and now the Natives in the Dakotas struggling to guard their water sources, my heart aches for those who must fight for their freedom to drink clean water. I don’t usually get political when it comes to art journaling, but sometimes your subconscious speaks before you can censor it.

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“Catcher of Dreams” Art Journal Spread.

Now that I’ve been a part of the Get Messy art journaling group, I have a lot to say, and say I will next post. Thank you guys for hanging out with me! Feel free to drop me a line via comment below; I’m thrilled to be back in business and painting away!

Finished Spread: Space and Clusters

This is a spread that has been sitting quietly, half finished, in my art journal for about two months. The colors are great (pastel blues and greens paired with their more vibrant counterparts via india inks and transparent acrylics) but there is just something really off about the whole spread that kept me away. Honestly, I think that the biggest issue I have with this spread is how dense the right page appears as compared to how much negative space is seen on the left page. Understand: both pages are 100% my style…just not coupled together. To me, the pages on either side of this spread contrast so harshly that they may as well be different pieces entirely. But, good news: they’re just pages in art journal! Here I was able to be creative, explore a color palette, and lose myself in a world where the only thing that mattered was the time spent making something.

So, I’m sure you’re curious to see this monstrosity, no? Well, it’s really not that bad, so I’ll share. (Insert winking emoji here.)

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“Space and CLusters” Art Journal Spread

And, while the spread itself may be lacking, the individual elements are pretty fun. Here are some closeups for your viewing pleasure:

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Center Close Up of “Space and Clusters” Art Journal Spread

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Left Close Up of “Space and Clusters” Art Journal Spread

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Right Close Up of “Space and Clusters” Art Journal Spread

Thanks so much for blinding yourself on this spread (joking…kind of) and don’t forget to visit me here again Wednesday! I’m in the process of editing a new speed process art journaling video, which is of a page that I actually think is pretty cool! For a sneak peak, you can visit my instagram by clicking this link: EmK’s Instagram.

ArtSnacks Unboxing: June 2016

ArtSnacks is a company which ships a small box containing 4 to 5 different art supplies and 1 piece of candy to your home each month. The box also includes a Menu, which explains what each art supply is, and a sticker with the Art Snacks logo; any other items are entirely promotional.

It’s finally June, which is crazy because 2016 is already half gone. The good news, however, is that my ArtSnacks box is here and I’m thrilled about it! I’m sure you’re curious to see what goodies were hiding inside, and so was I. So curious, in fact, that I postponed my mini-getaway just so that I could open it. Below you will find a photo of the contents in this month’s ArtSnacks! Of course, I’d be a monster if I’d done that away from my camera, so I set up my desk and filmed it, too.

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This month, the box included 5 art supplies. The first item was by the brand AD, a new supply called the Spectra Marker, which is alcohol based and came in ultramarine. The next item was a specialty softcover sketchbook, which was produced specifically for ArtSnacks by the company Denik; it contains 34 thin pages (68 front/back) in a sturdy binding of four sewn signatures. This box also contained a water based brush marker by the company Caran d’Ache, and is a new product called the Fibralo. Next in line is the Kuretake No. 7 brush pen in black, which luckily came with a bonus refill, as I couldn’t read the packaging if I had too! Finally was General’s Layout pencil, self described as “Extra Black,” and a supposed favorite among animators. Here is the “menu” for more information:

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June ArtSnacks Menu

June’s ArtSnacks did not include any other items besides the supplies, menu, and sticker. ArtSnacks values the 5 art supplies at a total of $20.15. Given the chance (and the cash), I would personally purchase 4/5 supplies, not having much use for the sketchbook. The sketchbook is valued at $5, which I find to be incredibly reasonable for the special design, so I’m still happy to receive it. With the exception of the sketchbook, you can see a detail photograph below of each supply in use.

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June ArtSnacks Supply Detail

Click the video below (or go here) to see my unboxing of June’s ArtSnacks—and stick around to the second half in order to see my application of each supply for my version of the ArtSnacks Challenge!

Below is the finished art journal spread that is featured in my June ArtSnacks video. This spread was created using multiple different supplies, including the contents of June’s ArtSnacks box.

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“Pink Elephant” Art Journal Spread

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“Pink Elephant” Art Journal Spread: Details

If you subscribe to ArtSnacks (or any other artsy/craftsy monthly subscription box), tell me about it in the comments: I’d love to hear your input!

Note: This ArtSnacks subscription is out-of-pocket for my household. I am not affiliated with ArtSnacks nor any of the brands shown in this video or discussed in the blog post. I have received no payment or gifts to participate in this ArtSnacks unboxing. Yet. That being said, if you work for any of these companies, please feel free to get a hold of me and send me free stuff. Seriously, though, I’ll take what I can get.

Finished Spreads: Week of 5/29-6/4

I’ve been on a roll this week at my desk: painting, drawing, gluing and more! It seemed like I was working in both art journals consistently for about 3 days, switching back and forth in order to allow paints and inks to dry. I’ve finished 3 spreads, started 2, and worked on 2 others, totaling in 7 different spreads in progress at one time! Today I am sharing just the 3 finished spreads, so as to not overwhelm you…or my camera. Enjoy!

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Finished Art Journal Spread 1: “Bull’s Eyes and Blood Stains”

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Art Journal Spread 2: “Flea Market Vacation” (or “Fish in a Bottle”)

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Finished Art Journal Spread 3: “Labor”

New Endeavors: Arting on Records & ‘Get Messy’

The big artsy thing I began this weekend was a new way to display my art: painting directly on vinyl records. Below is a photo of my current work in progress. I’d be lying if I said it was a new idea, but I plan to create art that is similar to my art journaling style, so I know that will be original! Acrylic paint is holding exceptionally well to the record, and I’ve been pleased with the way my Uni-Posca paint pens are handling on the vinyl as well. I’m still in process of painting my first record, but I’m having tons of fun with it, so I’m sure more will follow. I was lucky enough to have a friend with a collection large enough to contain duplicate records, which I was given specifically with the intention of crafting with; things took only a small turn, and my attempt at crafting with the records have turned to arting on them!

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Painted Vinyl, WIP, Unnamed

This weekend, I also placed it upon myself to discover what the hubbub on Instagram is about involving this whole ‘Get Messy‘ organization. Many of my art journaling peers are #hashtaging about this group. After a little googling, I discovered that this is a very private community for art journalers. It involves prompts, a lot of art sharing, some videos, and a private blog. It’s only $10/month (or $100/year), so I decided to give in and kill the cat. (In the curiosity way, not the animal abuse way. I’ll have you know I donate to animal shelters.) I chose the the monthly route to make sure it was going to be worth my time, but I honestly don’t know yet; it’s going to take more than a weekend to be sure that ‘Get Messy’ is for me.

Every Monday ‘Get Messy’ posts prompts, Wednesdays feature techniques, and each Friday there is new “inspiration,” though I’m not quite sure what that means yet. This happens for 6 weeks with a 2 week break, and of course I joined during a break, so I’ll have to browse through all of the archives for my information. (I won’t actually get to see the site in action for about a week and a half.) It doesn’t have 1000’s of videos, or anything like you’d find in an online class—but I didn’t expect that after seeing the price tag. That being said, if you’re curious, I think it’s worth checking out for $10.

Note: You must have or create a PayPal account, which you can do on-site, to purchase even a month of ‘Get Messy.’

Finished Spread: Vocals

I have finally completed the art journal spread seen as a work in progress in this post: WIP: Orange & Blue Background. It’s not everyday that I feel comfortable with a spread and I can call it finished, but happy day, this one is done!

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“Vocals” Art Journal Spread

Since the last update of this spread, I have used the following supplies on it: white acrylic paint; pens in black, white, and blue; my Faber-Castell blue PITT pen; a white woodless colored pencil; and a sticker (which I “artistically” butchered) that came from my place of employment. I’m not one to regularly use stickers, but I allowed it of myself, as it had originally spelled something different and called for severe alteration. The black lettering on the white background of the sticker worked well with the illustrations that I had drawn onto page, featuring thick black lines framing opaque white paint.

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Detail of Illustration on “Vocals” AJP

I fell in love the the disjointed brush strokes that create the circular design found at both the top of the left page, as well as on the right side of the right page. My husband told me that the clusters of outlined orange dabs, which are overlaid with black dashes, look like koi swimming beneath the surface of water. Even though it was originally a completely abstract pattern, I can now see blurred little fish wading on the page. Whatever it may look like, I’ve never created this design before; don’t be surprised to see it show up in later work, as I’m rather fond of it.

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Detail of Abstract Design on “Vocals” AJP

I think it’s finished, do you? If you have any thoughts about this page, leave me a comment below! (Or if you just want to drop a line and say hello, that’s welcome too!)

I’ll see you Friday!

Art Supply Haul 1: Challenge

What’s awesome about an art haul challenge is that a) it allows for you to use all your fun new goodies and b) it forces you to use items together that you may not have thought to combine. It’s makes you think just a little harder about the work you want to do. This isn’t something I routinely do, but its good practice and a great excuse to make something new.

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I’ll be using the spray inks, black and silver pens, stencil, and collage material that I unboxed and tested in this blog post. With the knowledge that I’ve gained from my quick testing, I have some ideas about how to incorporate all of these supplies in one cohesive piece.The sprays were a little difficult to control, so I knew they would be the basis for my background. I also decided to use the stencil, with its large size, as a background element, creating an already very busy page. I’m not one to usually use collage material as the main focus for my art work, but some simple circles and large text found in my package of ephemera seemed like a perfect contrast against the already complex page. I wasn’t sure how to use my silver pens, but after the adhering the collage material, I realized outlining them with some glimmer would help separate the shapes from blending into the background. The black pens were used for detail work, as intended upon purchase, and the smaller silver pens served for the same purpose.

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Along with the six art supplies purchased in my first blogged-about supply haul, I also used acrylic paint, markers, and other gellyroll pens to create this page. Because the of my decision to use the globe ephemera, I knew I was going to create a page displaying a representing the solar system. I was also drawn to the image of the pointing hand. Using the text ‘where’ pushed me to add words as a main focal element. After much brainstorming and scribbles on post-it notes, I came up with the phrase, “Figure out where you are before you decide where to go.” I relate pretty strongly to this phrase right now, especially in starting this new project in blogging!

This video below is, from start to finish, the creation of the journal page pictured above. Enjoy!

Art Supply Haul 1: Unboxed & Tested

In this post I’ll be sharing with you a quick video where you can watch me unbox each item and catch a glimpse of five different art supplies at work, as well as what pieces of collage material come in a very stuffed package. I will also be challenging myself to create an art journal page using these items, so make sure to come back tomorrow for that video! But before we get to that, let me explain why art supplies are the fuel for creative fire.

First of all, you’ve caught me…I don’t actually need any new art supplies. But, while making art is my passion, buying art supplies provides me the instant gratification that cannot come with literally watching paint dry. Its easy to become discouraged by a bad sketch or a slip of the paintbrush, but fresh pens and new paint is where the potential for greatness hides! Even ‘cheap’ acrylics and office supplies can transform a plain piece of paper into the blueprints for a masterpiece. Regardless, even if they don’t produce greatness, trying new supplies is always a fun experience.

Art Haul #1 Used

Purchased Supplies (seen above):
• Vintage Style Collage Material, 63 piece pack (Tim Holtz brand)
• Honeycomb Stencil, 1 piece (Tim Holtz brand)
• Metallic Silver Gellyroll Pens, 3 piece .4mm tips (Sakura brand)
• Brush Tip Wink of Stella Marker, silver (ZIG brand)
• Ink Sprays, 2 pack w/ 2 oz purple & 2 oz turquoise (Dylusions brand)
• Micron Pen Set, 3 piece w/ .45mm & .35mm & .25mm tips (Sakura brand)

Well, I haven’t splurged in a while (on  art supplies, that is) and  decided to go to the store just to see if there were any deals worth exploiting. I was able to get 2 items on sale, 1 item on clearance, and—with the help of my husband and a coupon code—get 2 of my last 3 items each at 40% off retail price! I’ll be honest by saying that all of my shopping excursions don’t usually end up looking so thrifty, but I wasn’t willing to spend as much as I might during a more impulsive trip. It also helped that the store was only open for another half hour, strictly limiting how many products I could handle and covet.

So, without further ado, here is the video you’ve skipped through the text to get to…