Rainy Days and Awesome Quotes

This has been a long week… I don’t know about you but I’m definitely ready for the weekend. If only I could be looking forward to a weekend of reruns and cupcakes rather than deadlines and laundry!
Today I thought I share a page or two inspired by a couple of One Year Art Journal prompts:

The first prompt I played around with was “drip some paints on your page, and share a little bit about what the perfect rainy day looks like to you”. This is what I came up with:


I started this page off in my usual way, by creating a spontaneous background from left over paint on my brush, palette or stamps. I constantly have 5-10 random backgrounds in my sketchbook, perfect for when I want to get stuck in! My next step was to scrawl everything I love to do on a rainy day using an inexpensive felt tip, I think it was a Crayola one. Then it felt like time for a bit of messing, so I sprayed some paint in random splotches and let it drip all over the place. After gathering some scraps of paper (mostly off the floor) I cut out some raindrops and pasted them to the page and (after letting the glue dry) I gave them an outline in black pen.

The second prompt was “find a quote you love and journal it”, I love using quotes in my art so it was quite hard to pick one… but after I came across the following quote on Pinterest I knew I just had to use it somewhere!


This began as another random background, born from my reluctance to waste any beautiful paint. The process of this page was massively simple… I grabbed a correction pen, a CD marker and a pencil crayon and added my quote (accompanied by the necessary doodles of course!). I also decided to add a border so there would be a little more balance across the page.

I’m sorry about the glare on these pics, the light was not cooperating with me this morning!

I hope you’ve all had a less stressful week than mine!

D x

One Year Art Journal

As you know, one of my New Year’s Resolutions this year is to a little bit in my art journal every day. Sometimes that’s easy; I can crank out 3 or 4 pages in one sitting. Sometimes it’s not so easy… and that’s why I like to take part in weekly or biweekly challenges like Fall Fearless and Fly.

Sadly, Fall Fearless and Fly is coming to an end, so I’ve had to go on the hunt for a new one. Luckily, I happened to come across the first set of prompts from ‘a year in the life of an art journal‘. It seems perfect, especially as my ocd likes me start things at the beginning… I don’t love coming in half way through…

So here is the first set of prompts:
New Year’s resolutions or ONE WORD. Do you make New Year’s resolutions, or take part in the ONE WORD project?
Use watercolours on your page to emulate your word… (if you don’t have watercolours, watered down acrylic paint will do just fine.) use colour to convey that word and what it means to you. While your paint is WET, sprinkle salt on it, and let it sit. When your paint is dry, brush off the salt.

Here is the page I created based on the prompt:

I used watersoluble crayons on the surface to write my word, and then embellished with doodles and journaling. It’s not the most art journal page I’ve ever done BUT I was just experimenting with my brand new Neocolor II’s to see how they’d interact with a bunch of other pens. I’ll probably cut it up and use it in another arty project at some point.

I hope you’ve all had a great weekend!

D x

Art Journal Every Day – The Masks We Create

The other day I decided to have a mindless play around in my ‘Inspired by Teesha‘ journal. This is the page I ended up with:

I seem to say this a lot recently, but it was so much fun just messing about and being whimsical. I love the slightly creepy character I’ve created out of fashion models and doodles! I’ve developed a serious addiction to using correction fluid in my art journal… this border might be my favourite part of the page!

I’m really enjoying experimenting with different ‘fonts’ in my journal- I’ve never been particularly good at lettering so I definitely need the practise! The quote (‘Nothing is more real than the masks we make to show each other who we are’ – Sam Shepard) is one that caught my eye a while ago… I’ve had it on a post-it stuck to my computer monitor, and I’m glad I’ve finally found a place to use it! The scrawly text on her cape is (I’m so ashamed to admit it) some some of the lyrics to ‘Bye! Bye! Bye!’ by N*Sync. I will not be surprised if some of you decide to unfollow me after this revelation.

Enjoy your weekend everyone!
D x

Art Journal Every Day: For When Your Brain Deserts You.

This week has been crazy work-wise, and when I got home last night I planned on doing more work but my brain had pretty much left the building. So instead, I opened up my art journal to a painted background and let my mind wander:

1. Background created using JournalQuest technique:

JQ Background

2. Gold writing (the lyrics to a Pink Floyd song):


3. Collaged blocks of colour ripped from an old magazine:


4. Random doodles using a correction pen:


5. Focus image added (stolen from an Armani advert):


6. Black acrylic spread across the background using an old card and voila!:


I really like the way the correction pen peeps through the black paint, and I’m definitely loving this whole layered look. This photo doesn’t really do the page justice, but no matter how I tried, I couldn’t get the light to stop bouncing off the shiny magazine paper… It was nice to have a reminder of how fun brainless art is!

Hope you’ve all had a great week!

D x

P.S. Linking this up to Art Journal Every Day, Quirky Crafts and Poisoned Peas.

Art Journal Every Day: Watercolour Girls

I had a bit of an ill end to last week so didn’t get a chance to upload my weekly art journal post, but all’s well again so here you go:

I was browsing through the blogs that keep me company over my lunch hour, and I came across a mention of this tutorial n Julie’s. I just love the faces, and I love the idea of a super-quick arting activity because God knows I’m lacking spare time at the moment! The tutorial was designed for ATC’s (Artist Trading Cards), but I decided to blow it up and fill a two page spread:

This took me about 10 minutes… what do you think? I think I might have to make a few more of these pages next time I’m pressed for time and feeling painty…

D x

21 Secrets – Alternative Lives

‘Alternative Lives’ by Zom Osborne is another of the amazing mini-workshops offered as part of 21 Secrets.

The idea behind this class was to imagine an alternate life for yourself, using a number of writing prompts, and create a journal page based on your idea(s). I came up with a ton: a mermaid, a 1920’s flapper dancer, a Victorian psychic, a futuristic robot, a Celtic princess, an evil pirate, a Renaissance painter’s muse… and then I didn’t use a single one. I ended up choosing a vampire theme for two reasons:

–          The next blank page of my ‘altered encyclopedia’ journal was covered by image of the moon cycle.

–          On top of my pile of collage materials were a few pages from an old copy of Dracula. I took this to be a sign.

Anyway, here is my final page:

If I’m completely honest, I don’t like how this page looks. HOWEVER I had so much fun working on it. This is one of those pages that is all about the process; I really enjoyed trying to tell a story using subtle hints and symbols, and I really loved experimenting with a style so different from my own. I will definitely be using Zom’s techniques again, I just hope next time the results look a bit better!

Have a great weekend everyone!

D x

Inspiration Photos – Sugar Skulls

So the monthly art journal theme on Wild Soul Arts is ‘Sugar Skulls’. I’ve seen these a lot in other people’s artwork, and they can be absolutely stunning. As much as I really wanted to try my own I wasn’t too sure where to start, so I decided to go on a little quest for inspiration. Luckily, as the October is the month of worldwide Halloween obsession, this wasn’t too hard to find… Here are some of my inspiration photos, that will probably creep into my art at some point. I hope they inspire you to create something festive too!

Some of these are definitely less sugary than others, but I had so much fun on my little treasure hunt, I don’t even care! Have a great weekend guys, hopefully I’ll be back soon with some art based on these photos!

D x

P.S. Because I just can’t resist sharing a few more…


Art Journal Inspirations – Effy Wild!

One thing that I get asked about A LOT is where I find my inspiration… how do I decide what to draw? There are so many things in this world that inspire me, if I were to include all of them here this post would take me days to write…. but I will share one with you right now.

Looking at the work of other artists is one of my favourite ways to find inspiration, or learn about methods and techniques I could try. Sometimes looking at the art of others will inspire me to use a particular colour, or an unusual tool, or maybe encourage me to try to draw something I would usually. But occasionally, other artist’s will inspire a complete piece of work. Here’s an example of an art journal page I created this week:

(Materials used: acrylic paint, black Sharpie, Paintastics brush pens and Papermania gold marker)

This piece, regretfully, did not spring out of my mind spontaneously, it was inspired by the fabulous Effy Wild… check out this video:

A lot of people harp on a lot about being completely original… but if you have to force it then it’s really no fun. Sometimes trying things others have tried is a great way to get yourself out of a creative rut. So if, like me, you ever feel a bit stuck, look through pictures on Flickr or Pinterest, search for painting videos on Youtube, read a new blog or two…. OR join Effy’s amaaazing artist’s network: Wild Soul Arts.

Hope you’ve all had a great week!

D x

P.S. Effy is also hosting a GIGANTIC giveaway to celebrate the opening of Wild Soul Arts. Click here for more information.

21 Secrets – Intuitive Painted Layers

So this week I’ve been working on another of my ’21 Secrets’ workshops, this one was called Intuitive Painted Layers, run by Dina Wakley. This one was completely not my thing, but I pushed through anyway. I really enjoyed the process of just not thinking too much, and slapping paint across the page. Here a few details of my page in progress:

(Adding scrawly journaling in black sharpie and correction pen)

(Simple monoprints create another layer)

(My reverse stencilling required a bit of help from nail-varnish remover after I accidentally let the paint dry…)

(I used white acrylic to add definition to the images I could see in my painty layers)

And here is the final spread:

Not too sure what I think about these pages. Definitetly not ‘me’, but I sort of like that….

Hope you’ve had an awesome week!

D x

21 Secrets – JournalQuest

The next workshop on my ’21 Secrets’ list is Journal Quest by Tracie Hanson (check out her blog- she does really cool paintings). The general idea is that you create a spontaneous background and then try to find suggestions of images in the shapes you’ve created.

So here is my background:

And here is what I ‘excavated’ from it:

I found this workshop quite challenging for a number of reasons:

-I’m not used to doing double spreads. For some reason it feels quite weird after only ever doing single page pieces.

-I don’t usually do a lot of ‘painty’ work- most of my pieces have some paint but I tend to rely more on  pens, pencils and collage materials. I couldn’t restrain myself completely- I had to crack open my Papermania Metallic Markers for a bit of doodly fun.

-The painting I created was not in my usual style AT ALL. By trying to find an image in the existing shapes I had to push myself out of my comfort zone… I couldn’t just paint what I feel comfortable painting. One big difference can be seen in the eyes… I usually do really detailed over-the-top eyes on my faces but here I’ve kept them simple. Not sure how keen I am?

Although Journal Quest tested my boundaries, I think I’ll be using some of the principles of the class in future artwork. I like that it made me paint something a bit different, as sometimes I worry that my work is a bit ‘samey’. And also, it will give me purpose when attacking those pages I’ve used to clean off my palette:

These will definitely give me something to play around with over the weekend!

D x