Artistcellar Blog

Imagine. Create. Enjoy.

Oh hello again!

This week I have been really busy filming - I'm a teacher in this year's Ever After with Willowing Arts! My theme is Alice in Wonderland, which you know I'm very excited about.

To keep with the Alice in Wonderland theme, I decided I wanted to paint intuitively  on a huge piece of watercolor paper. 

I had so much fun creating that "poster" last time, I decided to give it yet another go. I started with some 12 x 12 Artistcellar Stencils. I love these Sacred Geometry stencils, and they pair nicely with the Diamond Series stencils as well!  

From here, I'm just building up layers with the same DecoArt Media Mister in "Carbon Black" except now I'm also adding in 6 x 6 stencils and pocket stencils! 

Quasicrystals, Blocks, Chakra Series Pocket Stencils, and Labyrinth Series stencils play a big role in the mood here!

Now, for the really adventurous part... I mixed up some fluid and high flow acrylics with DecoArt Pouring Medium and poured paint directly on the poster. 

If I had planned ahead for this part I would have worked on a big canvas and not watercolor paper, but hey! We are painting intuitively here, after all. 

This is probably one of the messiest yet most satisfying things ever! The hard part is waiting for it to dry, which takes 24 hours or more.

But, with a little patience I was able to return to it and add small details with Posca Paint Pens. Here, I'm adding some leaves and the quote, "Those who don't believe in magic will never find it."

That's it! 

This was so hard to photograph because the pouring medium leaves things a bit glossy which looks incredible in person! (If you would like to sign up for Ever After 2018, visit: https://www.willowing.org/product/ever-after-2018/?affiliates=120 )

 

“What would happen if…” – Daniel Keyes

Have you ever wondered "what would happen if"…and if you did, where did your thoughts take you?

As PBS has launched the Great American Read, I decided to revisit my favourite book, Daniel Keyes’ “Flowers for Algernon” a tale of what would happen if intelligence could be altered through surgery. I am captivated by the creative process. I enjoy seeing the preliminary drafts of a work as much as the final piece. Keyes’ “Algernon, Charlie and I – A Writer’s Journey” not only described his method of fiction writing but the inspiration for “Flowers”. I was in bibliophile paradise!

Motivated by my stack of hardback book covers I decided to choose a light coloured cover for my next project. Inspired by the story I made my own inkblot on tissue paper. Once glued to the board the rest of the elements fell into place. The bottom image transfer was copied from a 1950’s post card. Bit and pieces of paper were added building up the layers. I glued dried hydrangea petals across the composition.

Artistcellar stencils have a great selection of designs in their collection. I chose one from the Labyrinth Series. The Chartres stencil was a perfect fit. The maze like pattern not only added an interesting design, but enhanced a key component of the story.

To brighten the composition I added acrylics using only a portion of the Infra stencil. Again, with just a bit of painter’s tape as a mask you can achieve the look you are after. However you chose to use them, they are never damaged and clean-up is a snap….the essential quality I look for in stencils.

Hopefully my collage will give you a hint of what “Flowers for Algernon” is all about without giving too much away. If you aren’t familiar with the story perhaps this post will spark your interest. With a bit of luck it will also inspire you to explore your passions and journey to what would happen if…

MATERIALS USED:

  • ARTISTCELLAR STENCILS: QUASICRYSTALS (Infra), LABYRINTH SERIES (Chartres)
  • HANDCUT DIAMOND STENCIL
  • HIGGINS BLACK MAGIC DRAWING INK
  • DECOART: Blue Harbor
  • DYLUSIONS PAINT: Crushed Grape, Squeezed Orange, Bubblegum Pink
  • DYLUSIONS SPRAY: Bubblegum Pink
  • REEVES: Bronze, Gold
  • LIQUITEX MATTE MEDIUM
  • NATURAL SPONGE
  • PAINTER’S TAPE
  • TISSUE PAPER
  • WAX INFUSED PAPER
  • LASER PHOTOCOPY  
  • FLOWER PETALS
  • HARDBACK BOOK COVER

Hello all!

For this week's project I started working on a couple portrait of my friends, Arlo and Ruby.

This isn't just any portrait though, I wanted to create them in my own little character style, so I started with some rough sketches using some of their qualities. They are both unique, so it was pretty easy to pick out some great qualities to highlight.

From there, I used watercolors to add the first wash of colors.

Then, I picked three Artistcellar stencils - Cathedral Plans: Reims Plan, Blocks: Tiles, and Labyrinth: Crete. I used modeling paste and a palette knife to create incredible texture with the stencils. In fact, this has to be my absolute favorite way to use Artistcellar stencils - as background and texture elements to my paintings.

Once dry, I added even more watercolor - and watching it travel between the raised modeling paste really makes my soul sing.

To incorporate even more color I started incorporating acrylic paint into the portraits and the flowers.

From here, another one of my favorite techniques is to put down some watercolor on top of dried acrylic (you can see this in the flowers) then I spritz it with water and let it run and melt on the page. To me, this is relinquishing control... and I think that is an important and fun practice to integrate into my art.

So, to finish it all off I added some white highlights with a uniball signo UM-153.

I can't wait to send it to them. I hope they love it!

Hello everyone!

Currently, a year long journaling/tarot class called Pull Pen Paint is well underway! I'm excited to be one of the guest teachers - but also excited to be a student as well.

I wanted to create a fun insert in my journal. This particular journal is a little strange -  I made it myself and added in elastic so I could have a "travelers journal" feel to go along with it. 

Today, I'm making a fabric insert using ink sprays and Artistcellar stencils!

Artistcellar Stencils used:
I started with a piece of canvas and laid the stencils down in the design I wanted. Then, I used ink sprays through the stencil.
Next, I used some wax linen thread on one of the outer edges, just for a little extra ooomph. To finish, I cut it down to size, and slipped it into my journal!
From here, I can put a little gesso on the inside of the fabric insert, and I can paint on it later - if I want to! I kinda like the inky, grungy design there already. I really LOVE the extra texture of fabric in my journal, and since it's only added through the elastic, I can switch it out as my mood sees fit. 
Want to join us in Pull Pen Paint? Go here -> http://bit.ly/PanArtPPP18

Hello friends!

After spending my morning creating amazing little pieces with plaster and molds (some homemade, some store bought) I was feeling really inspired to create. I grabbed a small canvas and set to work without really a plan of what the final result should be.

First, I used an Artistceller Blocks Series Stencil (Tiles) with DecoArt Media Mister in Carbon Black. Since the canvas is so thick, I thought it would be fun to add some of that stencil design on the sides, too.

Next, I used an Artistcellar Labyrinth Series Stencil (Crete) with Golden Coarse Molding Paste. 

From there, I glued my plaster pieces on, and started building color with Tattered Angels Glimmer Mists in - Partridge in a Pear Tree, True Blood, Lava, and Iron.

I also used a palette knife and some of Finnabair's Rust paste for extra texture.

Then, to finish the whole thing off, I poured Liquitex Pouring Medium on top and let it dry. This creates a super glossy, almost resin-like effect except it's way less sticky, messy and smelly. (Hooray!)

I like to make weird art. Art that makes me think. Art that makes people uncomfortable. 

I call this one D - I - S - C - O - N - N - E - C - T, and I'm still deciphering it's message myself. 

 

Hello beautiful souls,

Do you ever have a theme that starts in your work and continues to surface in each of your new creations? For me one of the recurring images that shows up in my work is the Chartres Labyrinth. I  fell in love with this intricate pattern back when I made one of my first "labyrinth lotus" designs. I used Chartres to adorn the petals of my lotus.

Next I created my little 4x6 mixed-media cards and since I loved the design I did with my favorite colors (lime green, aqua, and teal) you see the design again.

I had so much fun with the labyrinth series stencils I did some layering on these mirrors.

It surfaced again as the patterns on my sacred heart for my "Love Winds the Infinite Machine" piece, and then it morphed into jewelry with my shrink plastic pendants and necklaces.

My self-portrait piece that is still in the process of being finished.

I recently got sucked back into Chartres for the most recent shrink plastic necklace designs I created for our regional area Burning Man event in Wichita, Kansas, Resonance. I created some gifts to hand out at the burn and decided to make glittery feathers since those are basically a sin to take to burns since they leave what is called "moop" (matter out of place). One of the 10 principals of Burning Man is "Leave no Trace". Since glitter falls off and feathers shed from boa's and costumes they are frowned upon in the community and bring up lots of heated arguments. So my fun way of making light of such a triggered subject was to make feathers and glitter "happen" by creating my feather necklaces. You can read the full backstory on my blog here.

Of course I am always refining my designs and making each one better until I feel they have reached their "perfect state" so naturally once you do one design you keep getting ideas for more. I started out more simple and then kept getting more and more intricate. I did a Chartres labyrinth feather as one of the first feathers with a pattern and expanded from there.

Next I went on to creating feathers with the Chakra 1 and Chakra 2 pocket stencils.

They were so freaking awesome I had to do a sacred geometry series, so I used the sacred geometry  and sacred geometry 2 stencils as well. I even did a special release on my Instagram.

What recurring theme works it's way into your art?

Love, light, and creativity,

xoxo Genea

Good day to you, dear readers.

I always like to start out with a little gratitude. Thank you for being here!

Today, I’d like to share an art journal spread I created using supplies available at artistcellar.com

I am working in my brown paper bag journal that I learned how to make in Misty Mawn’s Embrace Yourself Workshop (2017 online class). I am sure there are tutorials on YouTube, as well.

I am starting the art journaling process on a page spread that already has gesso and a little collage under the gesso. The pages look like this:

I am using the Labyrinth Series Stencils by artistcellar.

I grabbed some Dina Wakley Media Acrylic Paint, a paper plate for a palette, and a cosmetic wedge. I applied the paint through the stencil, and it turned out crisp and wonderful! (See the three, step-by-step photos below.)

TIP: Dab the cosmetic wedge in the paint. Then dab some of the paint off of the cosmetic wedge before applying it to the stencil. This helps prevent “globbing”. Is that a word? Even if it isn’t, I bet you know what I mean! : )

Next, I used a Sakura Pigma Graphic Pen to do some journaling.

I wrote, “We weave in and out of the labyrinth of life, love, faith, & understanding. In & out & back to center. Finally when we are centered & grounded, we can make sense of it all. We can see anew & believe in the good.”

Next, I pulled out the fabulous Derwent Inktense Blocks that everyone adores! The color is highly pigmented, and they are water-soluble.

Aren’t the colors just “scrummy”? (I am not sure why I am making up words today, but I am going with it!)

I applied the Inktense color over my journaling.

Here’s a closer look.

These Inktense Blocks feel like a firm chalk pastel, but they are water-soluble. See the next two images below.

Apply water with a brush to the Inktense color and voilà!

Here’s the finished art journal page spread.

Ultimately, my hope for me, and for you, is that we can all “believe in the good.”

Blessings and Peace to you!

Happy creating with your stencils, paint, and other colorful supplies!

-Briana of OrangeSpiralArts.com

 

Hello beautiful souls,

We're off on another adventure with gifts and creating for our First Friday event.  I've been working on some more 4x6 pieces on watercolor paper. Let's dive in and take a look, shall we? I created this first piece for a friend since he had invited Christian, my friend Eryn, and myself to a kombucha class with him. One can't come empty handed, you know I like to ask favorite colors and things before creating a piece and then go from there. I started out with a layer of water colors and used cool colors of: purple, indigo blue, and sky blue for my base layer with water colors and shimmer water colors (a girl likes sparkles!)

Next I did a layer using the flower of life stencil with some white outlines and then layered on the pocket stencil chakra series with some distress inks.

I like to define the layers so I added some black outlines with some Molotow markers and then added some texture with texture paste and the chakra 2 series pocket stencils.

I wanted to make sure the color on the modeling paste stood out and wanted to make them metallic, but contrasting with the gold background so I did a little test before making it permanent. I used some modeling paste on some watercolor paper and then used some distress inks and watercolors to get  a copper metallic look.

I then did this same technique on my chakra piece to finish it off.

I will be doing First Friday with a friend next week so I wanted to have a  nice collection of different things for sale so I decided to create some 4x6 art on watercolor paper. I originally wanted to create a background and do a cool mixed-media girl on top, but the piece was so beautiful I didn't want to cover up any of it. I think I had the best luck with these awesome backgrounds using really intricate stencils. I did a base with blotchy watercolors to start out and then began layering.

I really love these oranges, pinks, and purples together. Next I used the hemp flower stencil  with distress inks to create my first layer along with some white ink.

I love the labyrinth series stencils so I used chartres and anasazi on top. I love how you can see all of the layers in this photo.

I did some outlining in black on parts of the top layer stencils to finish up the design. I am SO in LOVE!

I wanted to take this same style and create a few more pieces, but since the stencil designs aren't as intricate they have a more loose feel to them.  I started out with: greens, blues, and yellows for the base with some shimmer watercolors and regular watercolors.

Next I inked the layer with the seed of life stencil. I love how this looks!

I went for the last layer using chartres with purple, but I feel like the bottom layer got a bit lost.

I did one final piece before calling it a night at around 2am this morning using the crete stencil.

How do you like to do your layering?

Love, light, and creativity,

Genea

Hello My Lovely Lovelies!

It's my turn again to share what I have been doing for the past 2 weeks! 

I have continued to do more of the fun watercolor animals on my live stream using my Koi Traveler Watercolor kit here  are a few of my favorites:

But I also wanted to do something new for todays post! I Really REALLY wanted to use the stencils that are being released on the 15th but AHHHH! I can't! Lol!

SO, I asked Lisa for a bit of inspiration and she led me to Lynn K, (who just released her newest book "The Hand Stitched Surface") the person behind our Artistcellar Marked series stencils. How have I not Cyber stalked her before? It is crazy, I am in love with her work! it is so outside of what I usually create that I was immediately inspired!

I looked at her work on her website and loved her style, but I knew I didnt want to copy it, I just wanted to bring parts of it into my piece. 

This canvas is probably the truest MIXED media piece I have ever done. I sewed a little on it, I used papers, Dina Wakley Acrylics, Inks, white gel pen, black ink pen, I made marks, used hot glue and I used some of my button stash! I had so much fun! I started the piece planning on only using her Marked Series Stencils but I ended up grabbing the Labyrinth set to add some drama to the piece!

She inspired me to allow straight lines to show, for some reason I usually get rid of straight edges, I used little marks and doodles, and BUTTONS! I love using my buttons! whenever I felt a lull in my flow I would just look at her work, she is amazing. Thank you Lisa for opening my eyes! AND Thank you Lynn for sharing you beautiful work with us!

If you would like to watch my full process take a look below! It was a fun one!

Big Hugs and mushies to you!

Shana Banana!

Hello beautiful souls,

Don't you love making gifts for friends? I always get the best ideas when I do! This new design is no exception. So first let's take a step back and see how this idea came about. Do you all remember my Labyrinth Lotus petals I made in the very beginning?

I did these super intricate petals using the Chartres Labyrinth stencil. I think it has to be one of my all time favorite stencils. Not only is the design gorgeous, but it's so incredibly detailed! Once the petals were done I assembled it into my very first lotus.

Next I moved onto the 4x6 art cards I created to gift at Resonance, our Wichita, Kansas regional burning man event.

I had so much fun taking this design and creating so many beautiful things. These cards were fun to create because they were a nice quick and beautiful piece of art to hand out. 

After that I had the brilliant idea to create a functioning light with the lotus design so I decided to create the labyrinth lotus design on some small paper lanterns.

I must admit I didn't finish the string of 10 lanterns after creating this one. The design was very beautiful, but it took so long to create each lotus and they ended up pretty large. I was only able to get 2 layers of petals attached to them just to keep their size moderate.

After that I had the brilliant idea to make this art wearable! Yay! A little ode to my  art jewelry making that was my primary method of making a living for 12 years.

Here you can see the pendant before I shrunk it down into it's tiny version.

Next I added this little beauty to some recycled sari silk and attached an adjustable clasp.

So what was this new idea? Well I decided to jump back to the petal design so, of course I HAD to use greens and blues. My friend's favorite colors are: purple, pink, and blue. Here you can see our pendants side by side.

I took this shot in my hand so you could see their size shrunken down

Now for the finale.........

I added my friend's petal to some gorgeous matching recycled sari silk cord and added some adjustable chain and a crystal dangle to finish it off. 

How do your designs evolve? Do you love the first design or the last the best?

Love, and light,

Genea

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