Imagine. Create. Enjoy.
“Enjoy the little things in life because one day you’ll look back and realize they were the big things.” - Kurt Vonnegut
A collection of miniatures in a variety of media will soon grace the walls of a local gallery. The trend of purchasing small works is gaining in popularity and can be found in both home and office settings. I find viewing miniatures a fantastic way to slow down and to make time to enjoy what surrounds me…to enjoy the little things in life.
“Excellent!” I thought when I heard about the exhibit. I instantly reached for my Artistcellar Pocket Stencils. I primed a 4” x 4” canvas panel with a mixture of gesso and Sunflower yellow acrylics and stenciled on metallic gold diamond shapes. I wanted a warm background on which to build the work.
Once dried, I added the word “CREATE” from the Creative Words Pocket Stencil Series. And what a wonderful word it is…bursting with the spirit of the exhibition. The rest of the design easily fell into place. The Dragonfly stencil from the Traditional Japanese Series is the perfect complement in essence and size. I masked out two of the insects and began stenciling in a variety of colours.
I immediately think of a piece of visual art when I hear the word Create. But as we all know, there is so much more to the meaning of this word. For the wordsmiths among us I rubber stamped text to a piece of tea stained tissue paper and attached it with matte medium. The transparent appearance was just what I was after. I finished this part of the collage with a gold foil border.
The wonderful advantage of creating with Artistcellar stencils is that it is easy to mask out just what you need. The stencil designs inspire you to make your work truly your own. This is one reason I love using the Infra stencil from the Quasicrystals Series. The random dots I chose finished the piece and added the perfect amount of extra colour.
Do you take the time to appreciate the small things in life? I hope my miniature encourages the observer to take the time to stop and enjoy the moment. Hopefully they will create and share, by image or word, the meaningful little things of their life.
The gift-giving season has begun but I think that the plethora of ideas that pop up around this time of year can be applied year round. Giving a small token of our love and appreciation to a loved one is always a good thing no matter the time of year. Today I bring to you a simple ornament-style project. To me, some ornaments do not need to just be displayed on a tree once a year. Some can adorn our homes, studios and sacred spaces and be enjoyed at all times. I'd like to think the designs I created this week can do just that.
Here's what I used:
I started out by tearing a old dictionary page into pieces and then collaging them onto the front and back of the ornaments. Let dry.
Then I painted each side with acrylic paint. Don't put it on too thick as you still want to see the cool texture from the dictionary pages. Let dry.
Using a complementary color apply stencil design to each ornament and, you guessed it, let dry. I put a few coats on as I wanted the colors to be super bright and vibrant.
Using an acrylic paint pen I embellished the designs with my favorite element, DOTS. I also added a word to the focal point of one of the ornaments. As a finishing touch I applied Inka Gold to the edges.
And there you have it! Easy-peasy and beautiful results. I think that you could further add a quote or special handwritten message on the back of the ornaments to give them a personalized touch.
I hope you have a great week. Take the time to surround yourself with loved ones and CREATE beautiful things.
I just returned from a wonderful trip in northern Minnesota. For those of you in the Midwest, I went “up north.”
It was a sister weekend. I think this is the first time I’ve spent four days with my sister since we were children! And we had a blast!
The fall leaves are changing colors all around the state. Imagine the reds, oranges, and bright yellows against a blue sky. It’s breathtaking!
For this artistcellar post, I felt like making a little project. I am decorating a file folder to collect nature photos, ephemera, and/or leaves! I am feeling very inspired by nature’s beauty upon returning home from up north.
Steps 1 & 2:
Apply Inka Gold through the Surf stencil over part of the open file folder. Fill in the rest of the stencil with white acrylic paint, using a cosmetic wedge.
TIP: To continue the water pattern, I flipped the stencil over and kept dabbing white paint through it!
Steps 3 & 4:
Print some nature photos on 8.5 x 11 inch copy paper. Cut out sections that please you. Glue them to the front and back of your file folder.
Hand-cut some letters to glue on your folder.
Place the letters before gluing to see what you think.
Add a layer of Dylusions paint to make your hand-cut letters pop!
TIP: Place and glue the first and last letter of your word. Layout the remaining letters to get the spacing visually pleasing.
TIP: Use an old catalog or junk mail as a place to do your gluing.
Enjoy your hand-decorated folder to collect nature photos, leaves, or related ephemera.
May you find some peace, quite, and solace in nature sometime soon.
Blessings to you,
Briana of OrangeSpiralArts.com
Thank you for being here.
I want to share a few things with you today.
See the step-by-step photos below, and then move to the end to read the letter from the Divine Heart.
TIP: Mineral paper is thin, and when it gets too hot, it begins to curl!
Mine didn’t turn out quite the way I wanted, but have no fear, more paint exists!
6. Apply Dylusions Blendable Acrylic with a cosmetic wedge.
7. Use a white Sharpie water-based paint pen to add highlights to the heart.
Sending Blessings Out to You,
Briana of OrangeSpiralArts.com
This week I have some new mediums to play alongside my artistcellar stencils.
To start, I grabbed an 8 x 10 piece of hot-pressed Fabriano watercolor paper. This paper is nice in that it is both 140lb and hot pressed AND it doesn't break the bank. Good watercolor paper tends to be really expensive, and while worth it - I can't always afford it!
Next, I started auditioning some Artistcellar stencils on the page. Here, I'm using Tibet Series: Buddha Eyes, Cathedral Plans: Notre Dame and Cathedral Plans: Amiens Plan. The Cathedral Plans series stencil is a longtime favorite of mine for backgrounds. They are so versatile and I've found use for them in many different paintings.
With a palette knife, I scraped Golden Glass Bead Gel through the stencil. Let me tell you -- this stuff is awesome! Glass beads inside the medium really shimmer and shine and it works beautifully with the stencils!
I let it dry completely, and then I started dripping strings of Golden Tar Gel throughout... the tar gel appears white, but it will dry pretty much clear and adds great texture (similar to creating lines with a hot glue gun).
This is a super texture rich page and it was such a fun way to experiment with new supplies and old favorites.
Hello beautiful souls!
Birthdays are the best time to make art for gifts. I ended up creating this awesome 12"x12" piece for a friends birthday the day of. We got invited over last minute so I spent the evening making his gift. He told me his 3 favorite colors were: green, blue, and purple. Score! They all look gorgeous as galaxy colors and fade into each other nicely. It turned out so pretty I wish I still had it for our wall.
I also took the time to play around with some more of the awesome Deco Art crackle paste , the 12x12 Sri Yantra stencil, and the 6x6 golden mean stencil for this piece. I had a lot of fun with the bottom layer using some stencils, and splashes.
Next I layered the crackle paste. I love watching the little crackles form as the medium dries. The inks like to show through the white layer and it looks pretty awesome.
Next I started layering the sprays and things to create the metallic gold look. I used some dylusions ground coffee spray, some glimmer mist, and some other sparkly sprays.
The first layer looks like snake skin. Pretty cool. Then I added some Viva Decor Inka Gold to really give the gold some nice highlights and depth. I even took a nice little video on my Instagram to show off the finished piece since a 1 minute video can capture way more than several photos.
I create one last piece literally last night just to get some art time in. This mini art is 4"x4" and will be backed on a flat canvas. I used the flower of life 6"x6" stencil and the third eye chakra pocket stencil. I really dig this little piece celebrating the awakening of the third eye.
What projects do you like to create when you only have a short amount of art time?
Love, light, and creativity,
Hello beautiful souls,
Well I had a blast with the crackle paste this round! I learned some awesome things too so I am excited to share those things as well. So let's dive in! I like to start out with a 4x6" watercolor piece to try out the design and then go bigger. So for my first piece I rocked the chakra, pocket chakra and pocket chakra 2 stencils.
As you can see the crackle starts out white, but that's boring, right? So why not get down and dirty with some colors?
So here are some helpful tips I learned while working with this super sweet medium. On the website it suggests that you use matte medium to help the crackle stick to your piece better, but if you forget to do that when you start you kinda have to go backwards. Luckily you can still do that after you put your paste down. So you want to let the crackle paste dry. DON'T try to speed up the crackle with a dryer or you will not allow the medium to crackle on it's own. If you want big cracks you want a nice thick layer. Thinner layers will create thinner cracks, but be careful. The thinner the layer the flakier the little crackles, and when you put the matte medium on top you will lose it on your brush. The crackle doesn't really like to let all colorful things stick like watercolors so you need to get creative. On my heart sanskrit piece I used alcohol inks and the liquid solution to thin down and blend the color. I just squirted them right from the bottle on my piece and let them drip. When I was creating both pieces of artwork I flipped between both while I learned how to use them.
So let's take a look at my Om piece using the 12x12 Om crown stencil. I got my background nice and poppin' with some super bright colors, layers, black, white, drips, inks, and watercolors. I laid my Om on the top with the crackle paste and got to work.
It was pretty with just the white. You can actually see the distress inks penetrate the surface and bleed through, but they were a little too subtle. I started out with some opaque inks, but the crackle was so delicate before I learned the matte medium trick.
So I did the inks and then did the matte medium. This is not a water based ink so I didn't have any of the ink come up on my brush when I painted on the protective layer. So you want to keep that in mind as you do your matte medium layer. You can see the places where I lost some crackle, but it looks distressed and goes awesome with my piece. I was kinda digging the kind of tie-dye easter egg look, but it was pretty pastel.
I decided to get down with some alcohol inks and distress inks to really make the crackle pop, but then things got to be a little too much, and I was losing those awesome layers I had build up.
I got a little stuck so I posted on Facebook and asked friends to help make some suggestions. I got things like outline in white, black, dark blue, and some greens. I had already tried to outline in white but it still wasn't enough to help. I decided to go for metallic gold so I covered the Om in white ink and then got out the dylusions ground coffee spray, some other sparkle sprays, and I finished off the look with Viva Decor Inka Gold. I deiced I want to to clean up the outline so I addedd a paint pen in metallic gold as well and the constrast was pefect. I LOVE how well this piece turned out especially after the mess I started out with Lol.
What awesome saves have you done with your work when you got stuck in a design rut?
Until next time...
Love, light, and creativity,
Is it too early to think about Saint Patrick's Day? If you asked my dad that his answer would have been a resounding, "NO!". My father was very proud of his Irish heritage. He had quite a collection of Irish themed objects including several books about Ireland, pins, ties, green shirts a'plenty, knick knacks and even his business logo (which he asked me to design) was a shamrock! When I saw an unfinished wood shamrock at the craft store the other day I knew it had to be mine and I knew it needed two things: Artistcellar stencils and Dina Wakley acrylic paints. Well, and a wee bit of Inka Gold too, of course!
Here's what I used:
After lightly sanding my wood form I gave it a coat of Evergreen paint.
While I waited for that to dry I used the stencils and paint on deli paper to create a few sheets with interesting layers.
I chose a couple papers and tore them into smaller pieces and applied them to both sides of the shamrock with matte medium. The best way to do this is to apply a thin layer of matte medium, then the paper and another thin layer of matte medium. Use your paintbrush to smooth everything out.
When dry I painted the edge with the Penny and Umber paint. I used Distress Crayons to add a depth of color to the outer edges of the surface and bring out more green. I also rubbed Inka Gold along the edges to give it some sparkle.
I found an inspiring Irish proverb and simplified it to add a little text to my shamrock.
A few little details made with my acrylic paint pens and a coat of clear finish later and I have a finished piece!
I really like the layers of texture and the shimmer of the gold. Many thanks to my lovely eldest daughter for being a fabulous hand model for me once again. May you all have the Luck O' the Irish with you in your creative pursuits this week!
Hello Artist Friends,
Today is my 27th post written for the artistcellar blog. I am about to go deep, so you may wish to take a centering breath before you read on.
The art I would like to share today, is a page in my journal, inspired by listening to the audio book Miracles Now by Gabrielle Bernstein.
In the introduction of Miracles Now, Gabby says
Over the last several years, our collective negativity and fear have adversely affected the economy, the environment, and the health of all beings on this planet. Due to new technology, global warming, financial crises, violent crimes, political turmoil, and planetary shifts, we’ve become more sensitive to the energy around us and the pace of life. The world has sped up, and the changes we’re experiencing can be difficult to navigate. The intensity of this time can be very uncomfortable and, in many cases, paralyzing. (p. 1, Miracles Now, Gabrielle Bernstein, 2014)
First of all, I want to say that creative expression is so important, as we practice self-care in this tumultuous time. Keeping an art journal is salve for the soul. Of course, any form of creative expression is encouraged. For me, art journaling and writing are my go-to forms of self expression.
Second, I am a fairly happy, healthy human, but in no way is my life perfect. I don’t believe anyone’s life is “perfect”. We are all struggling; because working through life’s challenges is how we learn, grow, and transform.
I also want to say that creative expression does not need to take a lot of time to create a shift in how you are feeling. I did this journal page rather quickly, but felt very connected to something greater, full of light, hope, and inspiration.
That feeling of inspiration led me to look up the meaning of the number 27, after noting this is my 27th blog post for artistcellar. I had a sense there was something there for me to learn.
According to this numerology site here, 9 is quite a significant number.
“Number 9 is the number of Universal love, eternity, faith, Universal Spiritual Laws, the concept of karma, spiritual enlightenment, spiritual awakening, service to humanity, humanitarianism and the humanitarian, lightworking and lightworkers, leading by positive example, philanthropy and the philanthropist, charity, self-sacrifice, selflessness, destiny, life purpose and soul mission, generosity, a higher perspective, romance, inner-strength, public relations, responsibility, intuition, strength of character.”
And then I also noticed this:
Okay, let’s get grounded by taking a look at the art journal page.
Allow me to share the steps I took to create in my art journal. Again, this may quick and easy.
Step 1: Grab needed supplies
Step 2: Create some marks on deli paper with Distress Crayons. Spritz with water.
Step 3: Make a print in your art journal to get rid of the blank page. (Honestly, this didn’t turn out like I had hoped, but it didn’t really matter. I did get rid of the blank page.)
Step 4: Draw into the wet areas and other parts of the journal page, using Distress Crayons.
Step 5: Create a focal point that will be decorated using Inka-Gold.
Step 6: Open the Inka-Gold container and revel at its beauty. : )
Apply the gold paint with a brush to the focal point.
Step 7: Using a pencil, write “Miracles NOW” in the gold circle.
Step 8: Use a black paint pen to make the words stand out.
Step 9: Meditate on “Miracles NOW” in that shimmering gold circle.
In summary, I do recommend Miracles Now by Gabrielle Bernstein. Even if you only get one take away item to use and practice, that is enough.
Please take good care of yourself in these challenging times. There’s a lot happening globally and in each individual person’s life. Spread as much love as you can muster, starting with self-love.
If you feel inspired, keep a journal. Writing and art making are extremely beneficial.
Thank you for reading this post. May you be well in mind, body, and spirit.
May it be so.
Blessings and Peace to you,
Briana of OrangeSpiralArts.com
Hello beautiful souls,
OMG.. did we get some amazing new toys in our most recent Artistcellar box! Are you excited to follow up on my last art piece? I knew you'd be sitting by your computer eagerly awaiting the cliffhanger reveal. LOL. So without further adieu, may I present my most recent masterpiece, The Flower of Life Heart Chakra with Heart Chakra Sanskrit Center!
Next up I wanted to play with the Japanese Geometric Series
so I did some little 4x6 water color cards. I used some red, orange, and yellow as the base colors, then shifted the order, used some distress inks for the stencils, and the sanskrit and outlined them in gold. I added some white ink for a lighter contrast with the halftone dots stencils. I didn't intend for it to look Christmasy, but it kind of looked snowy with the white ink. I called this series "SeaZens Greetings"
I wanted to create another one of my mirrors using the labyrinth series stencils, but this time I did it on black. I really dig how the colors look much more bold rather than pastel by changing the base color.
My MMM was in the studio with me again this time creating lots of layers with his piece. I took 3 shots to show the progress as his artwork changes so much with each step
Since I was feeling the mirror thing I was excited to do a chakra and sanskrit mirror series. I did a little paper template first to plan out my design.
I like to do a little template first to get the "design bugs" out before moving on to the finished product. Generally I tend to do some problem solving in this step and find this to be a helpful tool as not to "mess up" my final piece. I decided to use the 6x6 chakra series stencils and repeat the crown chakra stencil since my spacing involved 4 characters per mirror. I did the design so that the mirrors can be hung side by side and follow along the chakras in order :D I like organized design like that. I did the sanskrit in some gorgeous metallic gold paint marker to make the design pop. Could you totally see these in a yoga studio?!
I made so much art recently with the new batch of goodies I have to wait til the next blog to show you all just what a blast I had with the speedball lino cutter and speedy carve blocks we received. I learned so much about myself and design too, so stay tuned for next weeks blog!
Have a wonderful start to your new year and we will see you soon!
Love, peace, and art,