Artistcellar Blog

Imagine. Create. Enjoy.

Hello! Hello!

I hope this post finds you well.

It is early summer here in Minnesota, USA, and I am feeling inspired by butterflies lately. I found the perfect stencil to play around with. It is designed by Tamara Laporte and manufactured by Artistcellar. The stencil is called, “Butterfly Wings,” and it is part of Artistcellar’s Signature Series stencils. This set is “Tam’s Whimsy Series”. You can find it on

Supplies Used

  • Butterfly Wings” stencil from Tam's Whimsy Series by Artistcellar
  • 140 lb. watercolor paper
  • black ballpoint pen
  • Pilot ultra fine permanent pen
  • Various colored pencils
  • China Markers
  • Water-soluble colored pencils (Albrecht Dürer by Faber-Castell)
  • Small brush
  • Water jar
  • Paper towel

Step 1:

Trace the butterflies using a ballpoint pen and/or a Pilot permanent pen.

Step 2:

Treat the outlined butterflies like a “coloring page” and fill in the shapes using colored pencils. I used a variety of pencils. Only some of them are water-soluble.

TIP: When you do add water-soluble colored pencils, use a small brush and some water right away. Otherwise you may forget which area is made to get wet.

Step 3:

Optional- Choose one butterfly to color in warm, water-soluble pencils and another in cool, water-soluble pencils.

Apply water to each one once you are done coloring them in.

Step 4:

Use your own mark making style and a China Marker to add designs around the butterflies on the background of the paper. Next, add some marks with a water-soluble pencil.

Step 5:

Add water where applicable, to the background designs.

Continue adding fun marks with different colored pencils and/or China Markers.

Step 6:

Add one final layer of water-soluble colored pencil around the main elements. (I used yellow.) Then add water with your small brush.

Step 7:

Enjoy your work of art!

Thank you for reading this tutorial. I hope you feel a sense of calm and relaxation as you trace, color, and add your wonderful marks to the paper!

Many Blessings,

Briana of

Greetings Everyone!

Today, in my art journal, I played around with the 12" x 12" Water Series stencils. It has been a very snowy February, and now a very wet March here in Minnesota, USA. It felt appropriate to use these stencils! I chose the Ripples stencil from the 12" x 12" Water Series.

I was having trouble sleeping last night, so I was envisioning what I would do for my artistcellar post! Pink and water was the inspiration behind what transpired.

Supplies Used:

Step 1:

Make it pink.

I used pink and white acrylic paint and scraped it across the two pages.

Step 2:

Using a foam roller and deep periwinkle acrylic paint, I applied paint in the spaces of the Ripples stencil by Artistcellar.

Tip: Foam rollers work great to cover an area quickly when using large stencils.

Step 3:

Using fluid black acrylic paint and a long-handled no. 8 brush, I loosely drew a mandala.

Step 4:

Add some details, using a script liner brush.

Step 5:

Finally, add a contrasting color of acrylic paint around your mandala and the background designs.

I am sending you encouragement to play around with your art supplies this week. Make a mess; draw something simple. Do not worry about the end result, but do enjoy the process.

May it be so.

Blessings to you,

Briana of

Hello and welcome!

Are you a circle lover? There is just something about that shape that gets me every time! Circles are calming. They encompass the whole. They represent the cycles of life. What do circles mean to you?

Today’s post is all about circles. Last time I shared how to create a simple mandala using Dye-Na-Flow. Today, I am sharing some more circle-inspired art. I am using Dye-Na-Flow and acrylic paint. The art is on watercolor paper, mixed media paper, and Bristol paper.

I am not showing the techniques, as I am working on my next online class where we will do lots of fun circle making.

However, I would like to help you feel inspired to play around with some circle making of your own. Why make circles, you wonder? Just read above. Circles help calm the nervous system. I don’t know about you, but I definitely could use a little help in that area right now.

Here’s a magenta and orange circle. The magenta is Dye-Na-Flow. The orange is acrylic paint.

Here’s a close up of some of the texture.

Finally, I made a circle pattern in my Canson XL Mix Media journal with the wonderful midnight blue Dye-Na-Flow.

As you can tell, I am a big fan of circles and Dye-Na-Flow! May you feel inspired to do a little of your own circle making.

For more art ideas and inspiration, you can find me at OrangeSpiralArts.comor on Instagram @brianacreates.

Have a wonderful day!

Blessings to you,


Greetings to all! Thank you for being here. 

Art supplies, especially ones with rich colors, are a true joy.

Have you ever tried Dye-Na-Flow? It is made to work on fabric, but also works on paper! There’s a great description on the artistcellar site listing all of the wonderful options for use. In case you don’t have time to hop over to the artistcellar site, I will quote the description for you here:

Jacquard Dye-Na-Flow Liquid Color

“This little bottle of liquid color is like magic. Originally intended for fabric, it can also be used on paper and in journals! Our favorite way to use this dye is with a water brush! Just take an ink dropper and fill the water brush with the dye, and paint away! Use it for calligraphy, journal writing, painting faces, and whatever else you would use a brush for. You can also put it in the empty Fineline applicator to make scribbles and fine lines in your paintings.

  • 1-1/2 oz bottle
  • Made in the USA"

Today in my Canson XL Mix Media, 9 x 12 inch journal, I created a simple mandala using Dye-Na-Flow. I used it like liquid watercolor.

Here’s what my set up looks like:

I started by creating some circles, rinsing my brush between colors.

I noticed that some of the pigment settled on the bottom of the jar, so you’ll see me go back over those magenta lines again.

Painting circles is so relaxing. It brings about a sense of calm and peace that feels really good to the whole body.

I like how the darker magenta looks over the lighter magenta. Also, when the magenta and yellow touch, it creates a wonderful orange. Take a look in the center of the mandala.

If you are looking for a new art supply with rich color, I highly recommend Dye-Na-Flow. It’s versatile and a pleasure to paint with.

Happy Creating!

Sending Blessings out to you,

Briana of Orange Spiral Arts



Hello again everyone! I’m back with more drawings of pretty girls' faces. This time I’m using the Pentel Pocket Brush pen!

This has got to be my favorite brush pen. It has a real brush tip, but it almost felt like I was using a really bendy felt tip at first because the bristles sort of stick together (in a really nice way). It’s really smooth to draw with and always lays down a good solid amount of dark ink. 

The different line weights you can make with it are also impressive! It’s easy to make super fine details and also big thick lines. You also don’t get any streaks like from felt tip pens, and it’s soft enough to not pill/break the paper. 

I’m going to try inking this drawing I made with it. I already took a picture and finished it digitally so no worries if I mess up…

It’s good for fine lines, but no matter how small your lines are if you’re using it slowly or just holding it in place too long the ink will spread/bleed a bit. It’s best for long quick lines - I had a lot of fun using it for the lines in the hair.

It doesn’t soak through the paper too much, my paper is pretty thin and the back is only a little darker where I was really heavy on the ink.

Since it’s good for quick lines, I got the idea to do some practice faces! To practice making lines without sketches underneath, the placement of features, drawing quickly… I filled up a few pages with some of these funky faces.

This pen is also so much fun to use. It’s so smooth and inky. I think it also comes with a few replacement ink packs so I don’t have to worry about running out of ink.

I bet that it would also be amazing for calligraphy. I’m not too good at calligraphy without sketching underneath, especially because I’m a leftie. Since we write from left to right, it's like pushing the brush instead of pulling it, and then the ink gets all over my wrist. :( Fun fact: I think I learned in sixth grade that Leonardo Da Vinci was also a leftie and he did all his writing backwards/mirrored. Maybe I just need to learn how to do that! 

Have a nice end of the summer everyone!

Hello Everyone,

A while back I had the idea to use some Artistcellar stencils that I had not tried yet. You know, the ones in my stash. (Please tell me I am not the only one with an art supply stash!!)  I introduced the following hashtag on Instagram: #artistcellarstencilchallenge. There was not a lot of participation, which is no big deal. However, I still like this idea, as it never hurts to have a little encouragement to use our supplies on hand or the ones in our stash. Since Instagram now allows you to “follow” hashtags, I would gladly cheer you on if you do ever decide to use some of your new Artistcellar stencils and post them to Instagram with #artistcellarstencilchallenge.

Today, I am using the following supplies to create the most colorful lily pads you have ever seen!

Supplies Used:

Water Series stencils-12 x12 Lily Pads

Acrylic paint

Foam paint roller

Baby wipe

Crayola Slick Stix

Rag and Bone Bindery Large Blank Page Journal

ProArt Markers-Set of 100 colors

TIP: Back to school season is a great time to find markers and other basic supplies on sale at your local shopping spots, like Target, Wal-Mart, Michaels, etc. I highly suggest getting a set of 100 markers. Crayola makes a set that I have been happy with, as I keep stealing them from my son’s art center. : )

Step 1:

I rolled two tones of green over the large 12 x 12 stencil, using a foam roller.

I decided to use a page spread in my Rag and Bone Bindery journal to clean off the stencil with a baby wipe. See images below.

Step 2:

I decided to add some color to those negative space lily pads.

I used Crayola Slick Stix first.

To move the color, I simply dipped my finger in a jar of water and touched it to the lily pad I just outlined.

I thought about stopping here, but pushed myself to keep going. 

Step 3:

Use a box of 100 markers to your heart's content.

I reached for my set of 100 markers for motivation, as color gets me every time. 

I noticed that coloring made me feel calm. I also noticed my brain was processing some hard stuff I’ve been thinking about lately, but my body felt calm and relaxed while doing so. This helped me to keep going with the coloring.

Below are some photos of my completed page, where I used Crayola Slick Stix, as well as markers to fill in the lily pads. 

I then added a few lines and swirly rock formations into the mix!

The left side of my page has some space for journaling or doodling, which I think will offset the lily pads and swirls nicely.

Step 4:

Add journaling or any other doodles to complete your page spread.

In Summary:

If you feel inspired, post your art to Instagram using the hashtag #artistcellarstencilchallenge. I would love to see what you create using your stash of stencils!

May you make some time to color and play, so you, too may feel a sense of calm and peace in your heart. Art is good for the soul!

Sending Blessings,

Briana of

Greetings, Everyone!

Have I told you lately how much I appreciate you? Well, I would like you to know it. I appreciate you being here, reading this post, and getting ideas for your art. I appreciate you supporting a small business like artistcellar. In fact, you are quite wonderful. You are shiny as a sparkling diamond, and as “glow-tastic” as the brightest neon Gelly Roll pen! Really, it’s true! You and your creativity matter. I just wanted to let you know that you are appreciated, sparkly, and “glow-tastic”!

Today I am going to use one of the Diamond Series stencils in my art journal. I am currently working in this amazing, Large Blank Page Journal by Rag and Bone Bindery. As one of Rag and Bone Bindery’s new brand ambassadors, you could be a lucky winner of a $75 gift certificate by entering my giveaway! Enter to win right here! (Pictured below are several sizes of Rag and Bone Bindery’s Blank Page Journals. Aren’t those deckled edges yummy??!!).

For this current journal spread, I am working in the Large Blank Page Journal with the bright orange patterned cover.

Above, you will see an Art Foamies stamp, some texture from a children’s texture roller tool, and rolled out acrylic paint, using a brayer. The Radiant Stencil from the Diamond Series is ready and waiting for paint.

I applied purple paint through the stencil using a cosmetic wedge. I created one on the left side of the spread:

And one on the right side of the journal spread.

From here, I pulled out my Gelly Roll pens and started to doodle, draw designs, and write on the page. I was sitting outside on a beautiful summer day, just enjoying the warm air and breeze. Moments like this are important.

The Moonlight Gelly Roll pens are my favorite. I seem to have the most success getting them to write.

After I doodled on the diamond, I extended the doodles around the page, too.

I enjoyed these moments in my journal.

May you find the time to take a break, work in your journal with some fun supplies, and enjoy some fresh air. May it be so.

In Summary

Art journaling is relaxing and fun.

If you like handbound blank journals, photo albums, binders, brag books or need a guest book, feel free to enter my giveaway for a $75 gift certificate to Rag and Bone Bindery.

You are appreciated! Thank you for being here!

Blessings to you,

Briana of

Hello All,

May this post find you well.

It is finally spring here in Minnesota, USA, so I am feeling inspired by flowers! What kind of flowers do you like? Though there aren’t any blooming cacti near me, I absolutely love looking at other people’s photos of them.

I’ve created a journal page, combining a few random elements to create a make-believe blooming cactus! That’s what art journals are for, right?

Supplies I used:

 Here’s the basic process:

  1. Scrape purple paints in a shape of your choice, using Catalyst Blade.
  2. Use a contrasting paint color, a cosmetic wedge, and Jill K. Berry Texture stencils over the painted shape.
  3. Paint the background of the page, around the main shape.
  4. Glue on the flower image.
  5. Do some journaling over the background.

See photos below.

When you don’t have a lot of time, but you want to play around in your journal, this is a fun exercise to try.

Sending you vibes of whatever brings joy to your heart!

Many Blessings,

Briana of


Hello everyone!

I'm so excited about today's project because not only does it make an awesome gift for others - it is also a great thing to make for yourself, and since it's my birthday today - that's what I'm going to do!

This weekend I went antique shopping with my family and I found this incredible vintage book! For this particular book, the pages didn't lay flat quite like I need for the perfect art journal - but I knew exactly how to remedy this. 

First, I started by cutting the cover off of the book. Then, I grabbed some watercolor paper and started making signatures. Just fold each paper in half, then stack 4 papers together. This makes 1 signature. I ended up making 5 signatures total, but only used 4 of them. This is a great way to use up the scrap papers in your studio too! Here, I incorporated a few pages that I had already created with Artistcellar stencils and watercolor

Once I had all my signatures ready, I used an awl to poke 3 holes on each end, exactly 1 inch apart. I did this with all signatures and then also with the covers, make sure not to get my stack out of order. 

Then, I thread a needle with dental floss -- yes, you heard that right! Dental floss. A little unconventional maybe, but it serves as a waxed thread and it's SUPER STRONG. Added bonus, it smells minty. :)

To finish the book I followed the coptic stitch binding technique which allows for the book to lay totally flat !

You can find a ton of great videos on youtube for the coptic stitch method... it's pretty easy and creates an incredible art journal in the end!

Hello again! 

This week is extra exciting because NEW STENCIL RELEASE! And this time - it's faces!

The new stencils are called "Fowler Faces" and they were designed by mixed media artist, Kylie Fowler. Eeee!

I love using portraits in my art journaling and mixed media paintings, but I still find using portrait stencils to be super fun as a launch point. It's also great for anyone who has trouble with proportions, etc. 

You will see in the video that I end up taking a different direction than what I started with - and that's okay. Don't be afraid to change course halfway through. 

I also had an issue with video'ing, so you miss some of my color, but you will still see how I set up the collage/spread. I hope you enjoy the video I created for you today!

Supplies used: 

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