Tuesday, March 31, 2009


I made this piece while in a reflective mood. My mother's birthday is coming up April 2 and the "anniversary" of her death five years ago will be April 4. That still boggles my mind. Five years have gone by so quickly that it doesn't seem possible. Just seem to be reflecting on the subject of time and how fleeting it can be...

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Cherish: A Tribute To My Mother

Here is my finished art doll from JoAnna Pierotti's class at Moss Hill Studios. I call her "Cherish: A Tribute To My Mother". Mom died five years ago in April and I wanted to have this doll finished by her birthday which would have been April 2.

JoAnna's online class was so much fun! Her videos take you through every step of creating your doll. You start with any plastic doll head, an antique wooden spool and your own embellishments. Here is a closeup of the face. You can click on the photo to get a larger view:

I think Mom would have liked this doll. I LOVE her! Hope you enjoy her as well. :)

Saturday, March 28, 2009


I found some great art journal embellishments at ScrapArtist.com. The lady, the middle cardboard strip and the title all came from a kit called "Art My Journal"; they have some beautiful art journal kits there now. Check them out!

I am FINALLY learning to create my own digital backgrounds. I'm experimenting more with the basic tools in Photoshop. I created this background and am really loving the blue palette again. This is one of my favorite pictures of me as a little girl. Even then I seemed to always be dreaming...

I've put two coats of glaze onto one of my art dolls and will add the third coat today. I'm debating whether or not to antique her. After hubby puts together my base, I'll be able to mount her on it and dress her. Hope to have a finished photo soon. The other doll (much larger) still needs some painting on her face before I can glaze her. I'm nervous about painting her because she is much larger and any mistakes will be noticeable. But you learn by doing. Stay tuned...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Spring Beauty

This is the skinny book page I made for the swap with the Art Techniques group. The theme of the book is "Spring" and you were to make 25 pages of your interpretation. I found this really pretty black and white scrapbook paper which I copied and painted over in springy colors. I mounted it to 140 lb. watercolor paper so it would be on a sturdy base.

I did underestimate the time it would take to paint 25 pages but I finished them all last night and added the little "beauty" girl to each page. Whew! Now it's off to the post office to get these in the mail.

Next up: HOPEFULLY finishing my art dolls from the Moss Hill Studio workshop. If you look on the sidebar to the right you'll see an example of the type of doll I'm working on. Hope to have them finished by tomorrow at the latest.

I'm enrolled in two more doll classes: one is how to sculpt faces in polymer clay and the other is making an altered doll. Stay tuned for further developments...

Monday, March 23, 2009

Live In Color

This is an ATC I made for a swap with the Creative Souls group. I love Andy Warhol's use of color in his work and I thought I would do a small tribute to him. I hope to get my art dolls finished tomorrow or Wednesday. I'm also working on the 25 skinny pages which I need to mail by Wednesday for the Spring skinny book swap. I'll post a photo of these when I finish them.

I received the Lesley Riley book about Lutradur and I can't wait to try those techniques! She even included two sheets of Lutradur in her book. So, lots of stuff yet to come...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Window To The Soul

My love affair with pastels seems to be continuing; now it's the pink palette! Maybe it's the Spring coming and all of the pastel colors of Easter...whatever the case, I'm loving pinks and blues lately.

I was thrilled to find one of my digital collages as Tuesday's feature of the day on the Creative Souls website! Actually it was the last one I did: Coming Apart. I've been getting nice compliments from the artists there. They are all a really friendly group! If you get a chance, check them out.

I'm not making as much progress as I would like on my current projects. I've had a cluster of migraine headaches that have had me down lately. Hopefully there won't be any more after today. When I'm able to get back down to the workshop, I hope to add finishing touches to my art dolls. The fumes of paints and glues would be tempting the fates right now. I can't risk another headache coming on. I hope to get back down there tomorrow!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Coming Apart

This is a digital collage that will become part of a larger work. I have been wanting to work with Lutradur for some time but I'm not really sure how to use it. Lesley Riley just had a book come out that talks about different ways to use Lutradur and it even includes two samples with the book. So when all of this comes in, I'll be able to play! I love her work. I have all of her books and couldn't wait for this one to come out. I'm wanting to take my favorite digital collages and transfer them to fabric and then mount on a canvas and finish them from there. The Lutradur will just be another element that I can incorporate. It's fun to experiment.

I finished my charms for the charm swap and mailed them off without taking any pictures! I was in such a hurry to get to the post office Saturday morning that it slipped my mind. They were pretty basic but not bad for my first try at making charms. I'm anxious to see what I get in return.

I've been poring over the fat book pages I received. These are gorgeous examples of art techniques. There are so many I want to try. I'll start posting my favorite ones every now and then to give you an idea of what I am going to try. I started a pile of techniques that I wanted to try right away but the pile got too big. So I decided to place them in order by which technique I want to try first, second, etc. That's a little better. I'll post the first one either tonight or tomorrow. These little pages make you want to jump in and start trying them right NOW!

I still have my two art dolls in progress that I'm working on through the Moss Hill Studio class. The hardest part about the dolls is waiting for each coat of paint to dry. I don't like to use a heat gun to speed up the drying process so I just have to wait for them to dry until I can put on the next coat.

I've got one ATC swap that has to be out by the end of the month and another skinny book of 25 pages that I need to have mailed by next weekend. Those are the projects I'll be working on this week.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Grunge Beauty

I have been keeping a list of art journal prompts for when I finally decide to start an art journal. One prompt got me thinking today. It said, "find beauty in the unexpected." So I took an old rusty background and different images and fibers just to see what I could come up with.

I am waiting for different layers of my art dolls to dry and am still in the creative mode. That's the hardest part about 3-D work; waiting for layers to dry until you start the next one. You don't have that with digital art, but then again you don't have a tangible object with digital, either. I enjoy both.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


I came across these images recently and liked the "feel" of them. I was playing in Photoshop last night trying out some of the new techniques I'm learning in the Photoshop class I'm taking. I love rusty things now. I can't explain it but I am really liking the result when I place my images onto a rusted background. So of course I've been scouring the internet for free images with rust in them. There are tons of them which really made me happy! Now I've got to save all of these images I'm collecting onto a CD so nothing happens to them.

Today I am finishing up some charms I made for a charm swap. This is my first attempt at jewelry pieces and this is a mixed media group so you can use just about anything to make your charms. Hubby helped me with my Dremel over the weekend :) . Who knew you had to have so many collets? Anyway, we were able to find the right sized collet and bit and I drilled my little tiles with no problem. I'll post a picture of the finished pieces sometime later today or tomorrow. They aren't too bad for a beginner.

I'm also working on two art dolls. The art doll I posted recently was from a little tutorial in a book I had found at BN. The doll artist who was profiled in that section of the book is Joanna Pierotti. Her tutorial gave just enough info to produce a version of her gorgeous dolls.

However, I did find that she offers online workshops to teach the entire technique for these dolls through her Moss Hill Studio. She gives you the name of the glaze she uses, her favorite dolls to alter, the paints she uses, etc. This is more of what I wanted because I want to produce those dolls! Yes, I'm in the course now and it's a whole new world. I'm working on a larger and a smaller version of the dolls. The hardest part is waiting for each step to dry but you have to be patient and just work on other projects until the dolls are ready for the next layer. I'll post photos of those when they are finished.

I'm also excited about a new art community I found on the web: Creative Souls. It's a very talented group of artists who post their work (most of them are in galleries), offer encouragement and advice and have insightful discussions in their forums. It's free to join the community and I'm learning so much. That is where I found Joanna's class. The web address for Creative Souls is: http://creativesouls.ning.com/ . Check it out!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Game Board for The Creative Journey

I'm still working on it, but here's what I have done so far with my game board for The Creative Journey class (see previous posts). You can click on the photo to get a better view of each section. I used a field sketch board I found at Michael's. I just removed the hardware and that left a nice, study surface to collage onto. Plus, if I play again next year, I can turn it over and make another one! :)

The board is divided into three sections: Upper right section is the "Leaving Home"; lower half of the board is "The Wilderness" and upper left section is "Coming Home". You were also to include a space in the middle for retreat and reflection. With the exception of a couple of things cut from magazines, all of the images so far have come from my own collages. The circle represents the path that the journey will take. There are also stepping stones for each section which I have to make and then place around the board.

The easiest part of the board for me was the "Wilderness" section; probably because I'm so familiar with dark themes! The part keeping me stumped is "Coming Home" section. You are to think of images that convey things such as coming into the light, rebirth of a new self, a renewal, etc. The little door image is a plastic door that actually opens up to my "reward" images. I have it closed now but toward the end of the game I'll show you what's inside. So you can see there is still some work to be done here.

I also have to have my hero character finished and named by Sunday's class. Well, I don't HAVE to, but to keep up with the pace of the curriculum she gives you guidelines for keeping the game moving along. Today I'm going to bake up a bunch of faces from the various clay molds I have and see if one speaks to me. I did get some flesh colored polymer clay, so I won't have to paint them all this time.

Everyone's boards are so different! Part of the fun is seeing how everyone is designing their own boards and characters. They are posting them to the group as they work on them. I'm not ready to post mine yet; it's still rather bare in too many spots! So, back to work...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


I've been playing in Photoshop again. There is a great site for free images called, believe it or not, www.morguefile.com . It's not what it sounds like; no pictures of dead bodies. It's a great site for free stock photos. I get lots of ideas just browsing through the site.

I have my game board almost finished (see previous posts) and in the next couple of days I will post what I've got done so far. Right now I have to get busy making my "hero" character.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Art Doll

This is an art doll I made using the techniques of doll artist Joanna Pierroti. There was a wonderful section about her dolls and her techniques in the book, Exhibition 36 by Susan Tuttle. Joanna used antique wooden spools for her dolls' bodies. I do have a few of those but I want to practice a little more before using them.

You start with any plastic doll head and after you use her technique you end up with what looks like an antique porcelain doll. Here are some closeups of the face:

You paint her lips and give her a little color on her cheeks and then decorate the head. I love this technique. The body of her her dolls was usually just wrapped in vintage lace and fabrics and she had them mounted on a piece of wood. So, not bad for a first try.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Creative Journey

I have just signed up for the coolest class! It's called, "The Creative Journey" and it's loosely based on Joseph Campbell's "The Hero's Journey". If you Google "the hero's journey" you'll get a lot of info on the concept. There have been a ton of classes formed that explore this idea further as it applies to certain areas of people's lives; e.g. creativity in this case.

The class is taught by Barb Kobe and you can read about her and the other classes she offers at her website: http://barbkobe.com/ The class runs from Feb. 22 to May 3. It is designed to help you through a difficulty in your life, a life transition, deciding what to do with your life, or any other kind of question you may have about how to proceed on a certain issue.

It is set up in a game motif. You design a game board based on your life and what you're going through. The above example is somebody's actual game board from a previous class. Throughout your journey you'll design game pieces or characters to signify obstacles, allies, fears, etc. The dolls in the collage above are actual game pieces from participants of past classes.

It's not too late to sign up. There has only been one lesson so far. You can listen to the recordings of the classes as often as you need to. You get an e-booklet of the class curriculum that contains all of the info you'll need to design and make your game board, how the game is played, creating characters, etc. There is also a private Yahoo group for the participants where you can access files, photos, and other info that you'll need.

I'm in the process of designing my game board. I'm almost finished. We have a teleconference scheduled for next Sunday night. By then we should have our game boards finished and our "hero" character finished and named. I'll be posting bits and pieces of my Journey as I go along. This should be a lot of fun!