Thursday, May 2, 2013

Art Journal Good Times Happy Hour!

Who isn't art journaling these days?  You?  Why not?  It's exciting!  It's freeing!  It's such a fun process that really releases you to think more creatively.  Which helps you all around, right?  Right! 

Why am I talking up the art journal craze?  Because I've been on an art journalling craze- that's why!

In addition to my own 'personal' journal, I'm doing two art journal 'swaps.'   I'm a member of the art journal group at a local shop, Paper Crown, and I'm involved with a thru da mail version with a group of BFF's (as the kids say) from  Speaking of my wimmins, we all met up, recently, to shop the town red- a couple were even from out of state!  What a commitment to fun is that?!   Here's a picture of us:

Aren't we classy?  Well, we are.  And FUN, too! 

Okay, back on topic:  At first, I was worried about doing pages in someone else's 'journal.' (And is it still 'your' journal if other people are doing pages in it...?   I don't know.  I'm not here to get technical.  I'm creative, dammit.)  I was worried about either not doing something 'worth it' or 'cool enough.'  Then, I thought, "KORY! Why WORRY?  You don't worry about wandering around the parking lot of your apartment complex, in your boxer shorts, to dig through a dumpster while juggling a Gatorade bottle* full of boxed wine SO WHY worry about your page not being 'cool enough'?!"

So I listened to whatever that is that presents itself as my conscience and I threw my worries, along with tons of Distress Paint, to the wind.

I would be lying if I said I don't plan anything out before starting a page.  I do have a plan of some sorts- usually a vague idea.  Sometimes, I do approach my worktable with a grand scheme but I surprise MYSELF and that blueprint is abandoned for something wildly new that is even better!  And that, people, is another reason (Is that just Reason #2? I lost count.)  as to why I love art journaling. 

I DO have techniques, of sort, to jump start an idea, however.   In the sliver of a chance that my technique will work for you, I'll share!

Project Number One:  My Paper Crown layout for April.

With this group, we're given a theme.  April's theme was 'Birds.'  The first thing that popped into my head was the ancient Greek comedy, The Birds.  By Aristophanes.  Remember him?   Immediately, I knew that I wanted to do some kind of 'scene.'

Before I did anything else, I started up my 'Art Journal Technique NUMBAH ONE!'

Art Journal Inspiration Technique NUMBAH ONE:  Pre-Art Inspiration Search! 
Take your inspiration word and head to Google.  It's kinda like when you play Dr. Google and try to diagnose your real or imaginary illness.  Only it works.  Instead of spending the day coming to grips with your freshly diagnosed terminal illness, you actually accomplish something. 

For example- the inspiration word was 'Birds.'  And because that inspired my inner-Google (brain) to think Arisophanes' Birds, that's what I typed into Mr. Google.  Then, either write down words or quotes or ideas that jump out at you from the search results OR click over to Google Images and see what kind of visuals/photos/drawings/colors grab your eye. 

From there, you'll be a bit more organized in your thoughts/ideas and when you browse through your box of collage clippings or stash, certain things you didn't think of before just might make sense to you!

Here's some close-up views of my BIRDS layout:

Looking at it now- I hate those flippin columns.  I jes' might come up with some idear to replace them, the next time our group meets up...

That was my Paper Crown layout- now, onto the 'PayDay Friday' art journal club!

There's no set theme for each round with this journal.  That kinda makes getting started a little bit tougher. 

Yeah, I know- I know.  A moustache.  I know what you're saying.  "Kory!  That moustache is OVER.  It's the new octopus and it's already old."

Well, to you, I say, "Oh, go sit your hexagon ass on a chevron.  I like the moustache.  Almost as much as I like the image of the guy flying around with his umbrella.  So there."

This page was put together without a plan at ALL.  I was digging through my plastic bin of collage materials and came across a stack of pictures of hideous food that I clipped from an old cookbook.  That reminded me of my second biggest fear:  eating so many Little Debbie's Zebra Cakes that firefighters have to tear a wall down and lift me out of my apartment with a crane.  What's my first biggest fear?  Eating so many Little Debbie's Zebra Cakes that Richard Simmons runs up to me and starts hugging me and crying.  How else to express these fears than with a moth/broken stature/jumping boy standing atop a mountain of 1960's food reaching toward a black pearl?

Here, above, you can see slightly sinister gingerbread men, climbing the food mountain.

Another of my 'no plan/no inspiration to begin with' pages.  Again, I'm obsessed with this little umbrella man.  He just looks so happy to be flying around with his umbrella and suitcase.  And moustache.  I applied him with the acrylic paint image transfer technique, over many layers of Dylusions spray inks, scraped blotches of paint, Distress Ink, and body oils.

I made a tag for the bottom right of the page.  On the way to an all-day technical rehearsal for the last play I was working on, I stopped in at Hobby Lobby.  I picked up Mr. Holtz's moustache die!  I love it.  I used it to cut grungepaper and heat embossed it with American Craft's Aqua embossing powder.  I added a couple of charms I had in my treasure chest.

Okay, I've got too much to do today.  It's May 2.  It's 38 degress.  And I need a jump-start.  You know:  a diet pill and a cup of coffee.  See you later!

-kory k