Friday, 28 November 2014

yes! Paint on my fingers :-)

Yesterday I spent the day with a good friend of mine, and we did some artjournaling together. Aaahh, the feeling of paint on my fingers again, the sound of the paintbrush rinsing in the water, the stickiness of the gel medium, the dripping and splashing and scraping paint around on my pages..... heaven ....

Even with the limited supplies that I had I had the greatest time. It forced me to be creative and find new ways of getting the results that I wanted. I'm not sure it is finished, I might change things or add to it, but I'll share it anyway :-)

I can't wait to get all of my materials here and start a canvas again. But for now I'm hooked on my artjournal. It's a long time ago that I worked in my artjournal, and I had forgotten how much fun it is to just play and not think about what will come out of it.

First it was hard seeing figures, but then I left it for a while and came back to it later, and one by one the figures started to emerge. This is the whole spread:

The weather is very dark and gloomy here, and it was not easy to make a good picture. Can't get the colours right, but it's the best I can do at the moment.

I also made a sketch this week:

She looks a bit sad, but at the start of the week I was having a hard time getting used to the cold and dark weather again and I guess it showed through in my drawing ...

But yesterday I got such a lovely gift in the mail. A few weeks ago, around the time I was doing my giveaway for a free spot in Soul Food, I also participated in a giveaway at Magpie's Nest. And lucky me: I won!! There were a few prices to win, and I got the one that I really wanted:

"Quotes Illustrated", a wonderful book full of art from different people and with different mediums, each combined with a quote. The perfect gift for me, since I'm crazy about the combination of images and words. So thank you so much, dear Patty, I will always treasure it!

There are a lot of promotions in my Society6-shop this week. Today it's free worldwide shipping and you get discounts if you buy for a certain amount. Go have a look!

 And last but not least: my funny for this week :-)

Enjoy your day! Thanks so much for visiting, and I wish you a wonderful relaxing weekend! Linking this to Paint Party Friday ♥ ♥ ♥

Friday, 21 November 2014

a little tutorial and some sketches

I'm still catching up with paperwork and e-mails, so I still didn't get as much art done as I would've liked. But .... I bought some canvases, I bought a new artjournal, and I bought some basic paints. And, oh yes, some gesso and medium too. And grabbed a bunch of magazines from my mother's table last weekend ;-)  So I'm ready to get going next week, or maybe even this weekend already :-)

I managed to finish 2 sketches this week though:

This last one is a sketch I had already started in my sketchbook, and I decided to finish it for a dear friend of mine, who lost her son 5 years ago this week. Art does not take away the pain, but it can soothe and heal. Art has helped me so much when my sister died last year, and it still does. I remember finding a beautiful picture of an artwork online when I returned to Australia after the funeral, it really resonated with me and with the pain I was feeling. I just hope my drawing helped my friend a little bit in the same way ...

To make up for the lack of paintings, I decided to show you an easy way to make some cheap stamps. I started making these a few years ago already, and made some more in the last weeks in Australia. Took some pictures, but didn't have the time to write a blogpost about it. Here are some results:

These are not for fine details, but they are perfect to use in a background.

So how to make them? You can use all kinds of foam for this, but the results can differ depending on how thick and firm the foam is. Just experiment a bit with it. I have used those knee pads they sell for working in the garden, also foam that was in toys for kids, and here I mostly used kids' floor mats, like these:

In these the back has a pattern in it, but you can also find foam that is smooth on both sides, and then you can burn a pattern in both sides.

I used a woodburner to do this. When I wanted to start, I didn't want to spend too much money, so I called 5 different stores for the prices and got 5 (very) different prices. I went and bought the cheapest, which was about 12 euro's, and had 6 different tips that I could use:

And I've been so happy with it! The only thing you need to take care of is that you either work outside or in a very ventilated room, and that you wear a mask, since the smell is really not that nice and I'm guessing not very healthy either. But once you get past this and protect yourself enough, it is so much fun! It goes really fast, before you know it you have a whole bunch of them and can start using them. Here's another example:

Take care that you don't hold the point too long in one place, because it burns really quick. Start with the finest tip, and when you get a feel for it you can experiment with the bigger ones. And it gets really hot too, so don't touch the tip before it's completely cooled off.

Hope you'll have fun trying this out! I'm linking this as always to Paint Party Friday. Take a look over there at all the participating artists. It's worth it!

Here's my funny for this week :-)

And no, it's not my cat ;-)

Oh yes, almost forgot: remember I asked you last time whether you prefer using word verification or registered users to be able to comment? From your answers it was very clear that word verification is not very popular, and that most people prefer to comment as registered users. So I'll leave it like it was. Thanks so much for commenting!

Hope you're enjoying your day, and that your weekend will be beautiful! See you next week! ♥ ♥ ♥

Friday, 14 November 2014

and the winner is .......

Thanks so much for all the beautiful comments on my blog and Facebookpost last week! It was a pleasure reading them, and an even bigger pleasure being able to draw a winner out of the almost 100 comments and shares on this blog or on Facebook!

Here's the bowl with the names .... ;-)

I'll keep you in suspense a bit longer, because I first want to clear up something. Have any of you had any trouble commenting on this blog? I got a message that for self-hosted bloggers it would be difficult to leave comments on Blogger-blogs, if the option for "name/URL" was not open.

I had a look at my settings, and the only way to make the complete list of identity options available is to let "anyone" comment on my blog. Which includes anonymous users. And that's the problem for me. When I first started my blog, anyone could comment, but after 1 or 2 years, I started getting so many spam-comments it wasn't funny anymore. So I chose to only let registered users comment. Didn't get any spam after that..... The only other option was to use word verification, which I am not a fan of ....

So my question is: which one do you prefer: always being able to comment, but having to fill in those almost unreadable letters or numbers to prove you're not a robot, or leaving it only for registered users (which is not only google-accounts but also open-ID users) (whatever that is ....). I really would like to know ...

So, now for the results of the giveaway! I had wanted to use Rafflecopter, an online tool that lets you set up giveaways and picks a random winner. Easy, I thought ..... And yes, it was easy to set up, but when I wanted to put it on my blog was when the trouble started. Couldn't get it on there, not even with the html-option. I only got a link, and not the sign-up box I wanted. So in the end I decided to use the old proven method of my previous giveaways: my daughter ..... :-)

Here she is, innocent hand going into the bowl .....

And this is the name she drew:

(the (B) after the name means it was a comment on my blog)

Congratulations to CHRIS! I will send you an email to let you know you won. Just in case, (one has to be prepared for everything, right!?) (well, also because my son wanted to draw a name as well ... ☺) my son drew a second name, which I will use if I'm not able to get in touch with Chris. But hopefully I won't need that.

Thank you all so much for participating, and for those of you who didn't win, I hope I will see you in Soul Food anyway :-)

I cannot believe I am still not ready with sorting things out and getting all my papers where they need to be. I knew moving to another country is a lot of work, but I underestimated the administrative work that goes along with it. As a result I didn't get much art done. Again. Boohoo!

But my daughter and I have taken up the habit again of sitting on her bed together before she goes to sleep, so I managed to get this sketch done:

Feels good to be sketching again ....

Last week I forgot the funny picture at the end of my post. So here's two to make up for it: one funny, and one taken at exactly the right moment ... :-)

That's it for this week! Thanks so much for visiting me and for taking the time to leave wonderful comments. I'm linking this to Paint Party Friday, and I hope to visit all of your blogs this weekend! Have a beautiful day, and enjoy your weekend, wherever you are! ♥ ♥ ♥

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Soul Food Interview!

Hi, I'm back! I have to, since today my interview for Soul Food was scheduled ;-) But I must admit my head is in overload at the moment, with all the things I need to do to get settled in Belgium (who knew moving countries could be this exhausting ...?)

It is nice however to be back online, I missed seeing and making art in the last few weeks.

So, as I mentioned in this post, I will be teaching in Soul Food 2015! For those of you who don't know Soul Food, it is an online art class with 3 head teachers (headchefs) and 17 guest-teachers (sous-chefs). It'll run over a period of 3 months (1Feb - 30Apr 2015) and you will get 2 video-lessons a week from different teachers. Registration will open on January 1st 2015. More information is over here.

And, to introduce myself, I had to make a video of myself answering a few questions.... I did this weeks ago in the midst of packing, having no experience at all with making video's. I managed to finish it, and I included a lovely song of Sarah MacLachlan in the end part where I show some of my work. But today, when I wanted to publish it, I got the message the video was blocked in some countries because of this music. Waaahhh... I really loved that music in combination with my art, but I did what I have to do and removed it. So you'll have to watch it without I'm afraid....

Here it is:

Making a video of yourself is quite eye-opening I must say. I noticed I cannot keep to a script. I just start talking and think of something and add that too, and in the end I'm talking way too much.  I had to start over many times, just in order not to bore you with an hour-long video ;-) And I hope you don't get dizzy watching it, because I also can't seem to be able to sit still. I talk with my whole body.... I know I use my hands a lot when I talk, but I wasn't aware that I'm wiggling on my chair the whole time too ...

Anyway: there's good news: I can give away a FREE spot in Soul Food!!

If you want to have a chance to win: leave a comment on this blogpost, or visit my Facebookpage and leave a comment there. If you do both: your name will go in the draw twice :-) And if on top of that you share my post on Facebook, your name will be entered three times!

I (or probably my daughter, who loves this kind of thing) will draw a name next Friday the 14th of November.

So go ahead, take your chance! The free spot is not only for my class, but for all the classes in Soul Food 2015!

I am not sure yet what I will teach,  it'll probably have something to do with drawing figures, but it might also be a journalpage..... Or something else entirely. Wait & see ;-)

Before I left Australia I managed to make 2 more drawings for Inktober. Since we left I haven't drawn even a single line! I miss it, and I really need to start making time for it. It has just been so busy I didn't even read my mails anymore ... Hopefully next week, when the kids are settled in in their new schools, and we have finished all the formalities and paperwork.

But here are the new drawings:

And now for some more good news: Lulu, the online shop where I sell my calendars, has a promotion on all calendars! Now through 13 November you get 25% off when you use the code 25CAL at the checkout! Great, isn't it!? This is the front of my 2015 calendar, all the paintings that you see a small part of here make up one month of the calendar:

And my other calendars from 2013 and 2014 are still available too!

Okay, that's it for now. I will be linking this to Paint Party Friday tomorrow. I hope within the next few days I'll find time to visit your blogs too. Thanks so much for visiting, and I hope to see you in Soul Food 2015!!