Artistcellar Blog

Imagine. Create. Enjoy.

Hello beautiful souls,

I love gifting. I know I have told you this before, but I will tell you again. Making beautiful things for people is my favorite thing. I just think lovely thoughts about the person for whom I am creating the piece and I am never disappointed when I am done creating. My friend Dodie's birthday was on Monday. She is a Pisces. I ordered her a special "Flow into Self" Pisces soap bar from crystal bar soap and wanted to make her something to match. I contemplated doing a pretty gift bag, but you can't exactly put that on your wall so... wall art it is! I began with a nice scrap piece of wood from my old work place that is 4"x6". I painted the sides with some acrylic gold paint and set the wood piece aside for later.

Next I took a 4x6" watercolor paper and the hemp flower stencil and sprayed some dylusions vibrant turquoise and crushed grape.  OMG, these sprays are SO PRETTY and SO VIBRANT! I love how bright they are!

I wanted to soften the harsh lines so I sprayed some mists of water and let them drip and run. I filled in the white spots with some aqua water color paint as well.

I put Pisces planet in the background which is, Neptune. All of the photos were blue so I went for a blue watery theme. I began making a space for my planet with some white and a Pitt Pen.  The look is really nice. If you layer once you can see the colors and patterns underneath. I gave it two layers of white before I began working on the top.

I wanted to give the planet a little raised texture so I used texture paste and the 12x12 fire coral stencil.  

I bubbled up some of the texture paste and added a lot of different mediums to give the planet life like: Ocean acrylic paint, lapis paint , distress inks, charcoal pencil, soft pastels, viva decor pearl pen, watercolors, and shimmer water colors.

I used my created Pisces image and cut it out on my cricut machine on some heavy watercolor paper. I did the fish in "galaxy" colors with white spatters, glow in the dark paint spatters, pearl pen, and a gold outline.

I sprayed some tiny wooden stars with glimmer mists, outlined the edges in gold, and glued them to the base.

I glued on my pisces fish, hammered in the saw tooth back, furniture pads and finished her all up! Here is the finished design.

What are your favorite gifts to create?

Love, light, and creativity,

xoxo Genea

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!

This week's project is inspired by a mantra that I have been saying to my elementary students more and more in art class. 

Progress, not Perfection

The younger students are still filled with the wonders of being creative and don't get hung up on perfection. They are excited to try new things and love their results no matter what. I have noticed that starting in 3rd and 4th grade the doubts start creeping in and they are more and more unwilling to take risks and do something they don't already know how to do. There is much discussion on having a mindset that allows them to grow and that making mistakes is part of that growth. I try to make my classroom a space where they don't feel like I am constantly judging or comparing them to their classmates. I found myself repeating "Progress, not Perfection" over and over throughout the day and found most students began to relax and feel proud of the work they are doing right now. 

How true this is for all of us. The act of creation does come with feelings of vulnerability and when we start to compare our NOW with others' NOW it can be daunting. When my students see my project examples they proclaim that they want their art to have that same quality. I remind them that I have been creating for over 30 years and if they put the time in to work on their craft they will improve but they do not need to be perfect now. I want them to try their best and make it their goal to have each project improve in some way from the previous one. 

I wanted to make this mantra into a permanent art piece to hang in my classroom so my students (and myself!) can be reminded that progress is the goal right now, not perfection. 

I found a canvas in my studio that had a start of a background made from various printed papers. I don't care too much for the prints now but the subtle texture from the papers will be a nice foundation. 

Using light molding paste, a palette knife, the Shadow halftone dots stencil and the X's from the Marked series I created a raised pattern around the outside perimeter of the canvas. 

While that dried I pulled out my collection of chipboard letters (from my scrapbookin' days!) and spelled out my mantra. When the molding paste was dry I used regular gel matte medium to glue the letters in place in the center-ish of my canvas.  I carefully flipped my canvas face down on my non-stick craft mat and placed heavy beanbags in the center and edges of the canvas to make sure the surface was flat to the table to as the gel medium dries everything stays flat.

When I was sure everything was dry it was time to give the entire surface a coat of paint and I chose Night from Dina Wakley Media. Again, wait for paint to dry. I then used a piece of sandpaper (a fine-ish grit) to sand off the paint from the surface of the letters and some from the perimeter of the canvas where I put the modeling paste with the stencils. This step really helps the raised surfaces stand out from the background. 

After brushing off the dust from the sanding I used Ocean and Evergreen paints to give some color to the canvas but not the lettering. As a finishing touch I painted the outside edges of the canvas red. 

Ta-Da! I love the way it turned out and look forward to displaying it in my classroom.

Have a creative week!

 

Hello beautiful souls,

It's that time of year when everyone is making their handmade gifts. I am really excited about the little mixed-media jewelry shelf I created for Christian. As pretty as piles of jewelry are on your night stand it's nice to hang them up on a pretty little holder. You can also use this holder for keys and other trinkets.

I started out with a scrap piece of wood. I gesso'ed the base and painted it with watercolors.

Next I began adding layers by inking on some of my favorite labyrinth stencils: Chartres, and Anasazi. I added some white inks with the Arabian Nights series stencils to create some layers.

Next I added some clear glittery embossing powder to create a little depth and sparkle. I finished off the design with a Metatron's Cube. I used some modeling paste, fluid acrylics, and metallic inks to give it a spacey metal feel.  Next I used a dremel to pre-drill some  some holes in the bottom of the shelf for my hooks, and then screwed them into the base. Voila! Instant wall art and jewelry shelf!

Being a bead making and jewelry designer it's exciting to make a mixed-media piece to tie all of the art together!

Happy Creating!

Love, light, and creativity,

xoxo Genea

Hello beautiful souls,

I'm excited to share my newest mixed-media piece with you. I am going to take you on a walk down memory lane to show the metamorphosis of the original design into the present.  I don't know about you, but I am always excited to always be improving on each design pushing things further and further and ever expanding the possibilities. I had the pleasure of spending a few days with one of my dear friends Eryn, while she was visiting from Colorado.

She asked me to create a piece for her using the throat chakra and remarked about how she really loved one of my 6x6 pieces I had done. I began the first design as a 4x6 with the heart chakra stencil and the flower of life stencil.

Next I designed this 6x6 canvas jumping up in size.

Later when the set of chakra 2 pocket stencils came out I thought it would be a great idea to add the heart chakra sanskrit symbol on the inside of the star.

I ended up doing this piece as a facebook live stream here if you are interested in watching the whole piece be created. To start out I used layers of watercolors, inks, and a white signo pen using the flower of life stencil.

Next I layered on some texture paste with the throat chakra stencil and made the texture bubble up by spot heating it with my heat gun. 

I just love making this texture with the modeling paste. In the past I had used some fluid acrylics, but I wanted to make the throat chakra blueish so I used inks and shimmer sprays to create some lovely layers and depth.

Just look at all of those delicious colors and textures! Yum! 

Here is the finished 6x6 canvas.

How do you like to expand your design when creating new pieces in a series?

Love, light, and creativity, 

xoxo Genea

Hello again!

I am really excited to be starting a new art journal today. I grabbed the small Dylusions journal and I've been wanting to decorate the inside cover.

When I saw the new Artistcellar Halftone Dot stencils, I knew I just had to use them in a fun and whimsical way! I started with a cosmetic sponge and  Dylusions paint in "London Blue" and I just covered the page. Then, I used the Halftone Dots: Shadow with Dylusions paint in "Vibrant Turquoise".

Once the paint was dry (it doesn't take long at ALL) I used a Halftone Dots: Midtone 2 with a palette knife and some black modeling paste. When the modeling paste dries, it stays raised up from the surface and provides the most amazing texture. 

I finished off with another Halftone Dots stencil, this time it was "Highlight"... with a cosmetic sponge and Dylusions paint in "Crushed Grape".

The cosmetic sponge really works beautifully with the stencil. 

Next, I tore out some illustrations from an old book, and used clear gesso to "glue" them to the journal. Once dry, I gave them a coat of Distress Stain in Walnut, and some gloss varnish. I really wanted it to be shiny, but if that isn't your thing, just go for a matte. 

I finished off with a black DecoArt Media Mister, some lace collage, ice stickles glitter glue and.... drippage! 

Overall, I love the fun and whimsical look of the dots not being perfectly round -- and I really loved how the stencils stacked and worked together. 

Now I really want to see what you can do with them. Wanna win a set? Leave a comment below and tell me what you think! We will pick a winner on May 11th and make contact through e-mail. Oh, and don't worry... if you already bought a set of Halftone Dots stencils you will get to pick another stencil series of your choice from Artistcellar.

Good luck!

Cristen

We thought February 29th, being a Leap Year, was a pretty cool date to release our  newest stencil series, Sacred Geometry 2! You seem to love our first Sacred Geometry series, we're pretty sure you'll love these also. We are also hosting a blog hop with this release, and I've got an awesome set of artists lined up. The dates and links to their blogs are at the end of this post, so be sure to check them out. Every artist will be giving away a FREE set of Sacred Geo 2 stencils to a lucky person who leaves a comment on the artist's blog post. That means there will be SEVEN lucky winners in all, and you have seven chances to win, but please, to avoid confusion, one comment per blog stop.

I've had these stencils for awhile now, but being predictable, the first thing I did was grab my gelli plate and start monoprinting! You know I love gellin'! And I LOVE the way these stencils print!

The above print was made using a dirty gel plate, aren't those crusty bits yummy?

To see how the stencils looked by themselves as a straight design, I grabbed a few canvases I'd started backgrounds on and did some tests. Metatron's Cube got some tinted Texture Paste squished through it, to add some dimension, then rubbed with a little Inka Gold in Copper. Really hard to photograph because of the metallic/iridescence, the angle makes it look like a different color altogether! A little magical...

I used Seed of Life on another canvas I had laying around, I believe I just stenciled it with some black Media Acrylic paint and a makeup wedge, over an existing red splotch. Can I pick a favorite child? Seed of Life is it!

My most recent project was an art journaling page. I am a member of Journal52 and every week we get a couple prompts to inspire us. That particular week the prompt was "monochrome." That was difficult for me because I love color. I started by drawing a girls face, in a style taught by Effy Wild. I used Aquarelle Water Soluble Graphite Pencils to draw and shade the girl. When I liked her well enough, I decided to use the stencils for a background. (A little backwards... but that's me, ha!) I simply used a light coating of Black Pan Pastels, to make it look like shades of gray, and layered the stencils. So easy and looks great.

When I was done with my monochromatic page, all that gray made me sad. So I found this great quote and added some colorful rub-on flowers to the bottom. I'm a rebel.

That's all I'm going to show you for now, but stay tuned to THIS blog the next few weeks when the Design Team shows you what they did with these stencils!

Follow the blog hop, I will remind you and provide a link each day on Facebook and Twitter. Leave a comment on THEIR blog for a chance to win! Leave a comment on THIS blog post too! Tell me which stencil is your favorite design, and leave your contact info so I can contact you in case you win. Good luck and enjoy!

February 29th - Lisa Cousineau/Artistcellar  <-- YOU ARE HERE
artistcellar.com/blog/news
March 1st - Stephanie Gagos
http://www.stephaniegagos.com/blog/ 
March 2nd - Lisa Chin
somethingcleveraboutnothing.blogspot.com
 March 3rd - Linda Edkins Wyatt
http://lindaedkinswyatt.blogspot.com
March 4th - Sarah Trumpp
http://wonderstrange.com  
March 5th - Effy Wild
http://effybird.com
March 6th - Guadalupe Brizuela Cabal
http://guadasartplace.blogspot.com  
See you soon!
Lisa