Archive | April 2016

Prompt 18, Slowing down


“The faster we live the less emotion is left in the world. The slower we live the deeper we feel the world around us” Stanko Abadzic

“It’s possible to be mindful at any speed-you can be sure an Olympic sprinter is completely focused and present for those 10 seconds it takes to run the 100 meters. But we all know there are times when speed becomes mindless, and when 21st-century life seems to be one big race. We find we’re unable to appreciate life because we’re rushing through it, with one eye always on the clock.” Mindfulness, A practical Guide, by Tessa Watt

We may not be able to live on a tropical island sipping a drink out of a pineapple, but we do need to try to have sometime when we do slow down. When I would come home from work I would pull into the drive way, turn off the car and just sit there for five minutes. It wasn’t much but it was enough time to separate work me from home me.

To respond to this prompt  journal about how you slow down and what do you notice when you do take time to take those few minutes for yourself.

Tag technique using  Tim Holtz Tissue Paper, Pitt Brush Marker and Acrylic Paint Pens



The first step is to “paint” the tag with Acrylic Matt Medium or Mod Podge, or a similar product.


Cover the tag with Tim Holtz Tissue Paper, gently rub with old credit card to press down paper, trim tissue paper to shape of tag.


I cut out the butterfly from the tissue paper. Find an element that you would like to add to your tag.


Glue the element in place. Let the tag thoroughly dry.


On the reverse side of the tag I glued a piece of card stock to add strength to the tag.


Here is my finished tag. I used Pitt Brush Markers and Acrylic Paint Pens to color and add designs and words. The quote from Gandhi reads “There is more to life than increasing it’s speed.” Tags offer a  nice addition to a journal page, possibly tucked in a pocket.See the example of a pocket In my journal at the bottom of this page.

Also a tag booklet held together with ribbon or a metal ring is a great way to respond to prompts or create art when you have limited time. Below are a downloadable tag to color and a tag template. To download click on the word tags below. Print on card stock for the best result.



This is my response to the prompt, “Slowing Down” I made the pocket for the tag by cutting a piece of card stock into a rectangle. I ran red line tape along the sides and the bottom of the pocket and then glued it into place. There is a park I like to go to that has a lily pond.  It is a lovely place to sit and look at the water. I recreated the feeling of this place on the right hand page of my journal as a reminder to take some time to slow down.

Prompt 17, Imagination


The quote from Lauren Bacall, “Imagination is the highest Kite we can fly”, points out that there is no limits within our own imagination.We can dream up a painting, a collage, journal page, poem, story or digital composition.

The definition of Imagination is ” the act or power of forming  a mental image of something not present.” Miriam Webster Online Dictionary

We as artist and or writers can bring into reality a thought or an idea, that is indeed powerful! For your response to this weeks prompt answer one or both of the following questions: What is it that sparks your imagination? What are your thoughts on imagination?

This method of making a mark comes from the book, Surface Treatment Workshop by Darlene McElroy and Sandra Wilson. It is a resist technique using dish washing soap.

You will need watercolor paper or a strong mixed media paper, dish washing liquid a dropper and or a spray bottle, a paint brush, paper towels, acrylic and or water color paint.


Take 1 teaspoon of dish washing liquid and add it to a cup of water. To get a more dramatic effect you can add one or two more teaspoons to the water. I did find I needed to add more soap to the mix for it to show up.


Here is my first attempt. I didn’t have the paint wet enough and there needed to be more soap in the water.


Try again! I used water color this time and made sure I used a lot of water when applying the paint.


Here is the next step I dropped the soapy mixture on the paper.  I found that using the dropper worked better than the spray. Let the paper dry, then take a paper towel and gently blot the remaining drops from the paper.


While creating this one I dipped my fingers in the water and waved my hand over the paper. When it dried I found it gave the best result.

feathers photo

I used a Julie Balzer stencil and a wooden feather I bought from Micheal’s to trace these feathers. Click on the word Feathers below to download the feather images. You may use the images for your own personnel art work.


Prompt 16, Create with Your Heart

The prompt this week is, Create with your whole heart!

When we create with our heart we may not know where we are going with an art piece, writing or a photograph session until we get there. Some type of art lends itself more to the process of letting go and just creating. One of these techniques is a master board. A master board can be created on a large sheet of paper using collage images, paint, ink, stencils or stamps. However you decided to respond to this prompt, try not to plan too much, just let go, have fun and see what happens, and of course let us know your feelings  on creating with this idea in mind.

Master Board Tutorial


Start with a large piece of mixed media paper or watercolor paper, gather paper images  Use an old credit card to run over the top of the images to adhere them to the paper. I used heavy gel medium to glue the images down. I like the this medium as it securely glues.


This is the paper with the images glued on to it. I used pages from old books, tissue paper, Tim Holtz tissue paper, coloring book images, images on regular copy paper from the internet, and various other papers.


After the paper was dry I used watercolor on a few places to start to unify the composition.


Next I used a stencil and Tim Holtz Distress Spray Stain. I again only picked about 4 or 5 places on the sheet of paper to spray through the stencil. The concept is to keep the layers transparent and not cover the whole paper with one color or image.


This layer I used Gelatos . First rub the Gelatos on the surface on the paper, smudge with your finger, lay stencil on top of rubbed on Gelatos, use a baby wipe to remove some of the medium and reveal the stenciled image.


For this step stencils are used again to leave a mark. Use the acrylic paint of your choice and a makeup sponge to apply the paint. Use a tapping movement to apply the paint.


Use the stamps you like and Archival black ink to stamp images on different locations on the paper.


Here is the finished master board.


The theme of this week’s prompt is “Create with your Heart”, so of course I chose hearts for the image. The master board can be cut up into whatever shapes you would like, it can also be used for a background on journal pages. I have also used it for an inchies mosaic.


Here is what the finished hearts look like.

Below are of some of the hearts I created, feel free to have for your own use. Please no commercial product use allowed. Click on the word hearts to download.




Prompt 15, Who is your favorite artist?

Prompt 15: Who is your favorite artist?  Some ideas for your response to this prompt can include: a photo of one of the artist’s paintings, select one element of their technique and use it in your pages (such as color), write about what attracts you to their work.

Claude Monet’s art technique was influenced by the art of Edouard Manet. Manet originally learned from the school of realism and naturalism of his fellow artists of the time period. Edouard Monet brought together the French impressionists: Auguste Renior, Alfred Sisley, Claude Monet and Camille Pissaro. These artists learned from each other in the same way we can also benefit from the knowledge of other creative people. Inspiration can come from members in our group, classic artists, well known mixed media artists, such as Dina Wakley, Seth Apter, Gwen Lafluer, Tim Holtz, Julie Balzer and Diane Revealey. We may not want to use every technique we see, but we can take some of those ideas and make them our own by the way we incorporate them into our artwork.

Looking forward to seeing everyone’s response to Prompt 15!


Monet Painting on his Studio Boat by Edouard Manet.

Bassin dArgenteuil by Claude Monet OSA022

Bassin d’Argenteuil by Claude Monet



Prompt 14, April 3, 2016

The prompt for this week: Sometimes you just have to laugh!

Use your imagination to respond to the prompt and get silly, funny or off beat. These words from D. Antoinette Fay is an example of  how our imagination can be used to twist reality a bit: “I wear the universe backwards. I imagine putting the stars in my coffee and sugar in the sky. I imagine going fishing in the clouds and watching the sun hide behind the lakes.”

I remember this type of thought as a child. Something as simple as putting chairs in a row and pretending you were on a plane going to some exotic location. You see this idea in children’s books too, such as Dr. Seuss. A whole make believe location with fanciful creatures.

There are also benefits to laughter for all of us. It relaxes your whole body, it boost your immune system and also endorphins are released to give you a feeling of well being.

You can take your response in the direction of something you think is funny or silly, or you can go with the offbeat where you create through words or art a fantasy land. The most important thing to remember with this prompt is to have fun.