{21 Secrets} Watercolour Playground

21 Secrets
As promised, I’m back with some more of my creations from last year’s 21 Secrets workshop… today I want to share the pages I made following Tammy Garcia’s Watercolour Playground lessons.
Historically, I’m not the biggest fan of watercolour. It annoys me that you need to use certain paper to get a result. It annoys me that it reactivates if you spill something on it (and I do that a lot). Having said that, I actually really enjoyed this class. It’s quite a slow medium to work with, and as I was testing out a few new techniques, I was going extra, extra, slow… which is very therapeutic, especially if you’re a ‘mile a minute’ kind of person like me.
Have I ever mentioned how much I love rainbows? Blending all of the stripes was sooo calming but do you now what wasn’t calming? Watching the cat knock my pain water all over it, and seeing a big white splodge materialize in the middle. Grrrr. I think you can see a few of the water spots in the top corner…)
One of my usual bug bears with watercolours is that they’re just a bit wishy washy… and I have an expensive little set that I never even touch for that reason…. BUT my Crayola set (which was about £5) are so vibrant and lush that I can’t leave them alone now!
Here I went a teensy bit rogue and put my own mark on the lesson by adding lots of doodles and dots… You can’t really tell from this photo, but the white dimensional paint sucked up some of the watercolour and tinted itself – a very cool effect!
This page was a collection of all the different tips and techniques Tammy shared throughout the workshop and I’m not kidding when I say it took me FOREVER. I think I managed to watch the entire second season of Stella while I was working on it!
So what do you think? Am I a watercolour whiz now? You should definitely hop over to Daisy Yellow, Tammy’s blog. It’s filled with fabulous creative prompts, in fact, my first ever art journal page was created as a response to one of them!
Have a great weekend guys, I’ll be back soon 🙂
D x

{21 Secrets} Doodling Our Way

As you know, this year I’ve been taking part in a number of online art workshops. I haven’t really blogged about them as much as I would have liked to, but there’s no time limit, so I will keep sharing my work even after the classes have finished.
Today I wanted to talk to you about…
21 Secrets

… the course hosted by Dirty Footprints Studio, that runs from March to December.

If you’ve been following for a while, you’ll know that I did this course last year too – each cycle is a different 21 artist offering 21 art journaling lessons, and it’s a HUGE bargain. The one negative I have is that you don’t get to keep the lessons. It would be great if you could download the videos or something, in case you want to have another go later on.

The lesson I started out with was Doodling Our Way, by Cathy Bluteau. Essentially it combined a bit of collage and a lot of doodling (two things that I love). This was my first attempt:


It was such a nice, relaxing process. I love being able to sit down with a a pen, a blanket and a cuppa, and just let my hand do all the work while my brain has a good old rest. I currently have another one on the go:


And even more lined up for later…

DSCN1991 DSCN1992 DSCN1993

So tell me, have you been up to anything creative recently? If you’ve been taking part in 21 Secrets, I’d love to see some of your work!

D x

P.S. I’ve just set up a Facebook page for my blog – I’d love it if you would hop over and like it, or share it with your friends!

Heart Sight Heart Light

Hellooo! I’ve been a bit lax with posting my art journaling endeavours recently, and I’ve been even more lax about keeping up with the Life Book lessons… I’ll get more efficient I PROMISE but sometimes work and sleep and study just get in the way of everything! The good news is I’ve been given the spare room to turn into an art studio (yay!), and my Saturday tutorial has been cancelled this week, so very, very soon I’ll have a designated creative space with places to store my stash. I’m pretty damn excited, I’m not gonna lie! It’s so much easier to stay inspired if you don’t have to pack everything away once you’re finished using it. Plus, it will be really convenient having somewhere to leave things to dry!

Today I wanted to share the last Life Book page I completed – this one came from Effy Wild’s Heart Sight Heart Light lesson:



I have to say, I’m slightly in love with this background! As a lot of my art stuff is still currently packed up in boxes, I didn’t have any tissue paper to hand, so I had to improvise. I ended up using some paper napkins with a floral design to create the texture, and I really like that in some areas the printed lines shine through. The supplies I used here were so, so simple – my napkin, some glue, two felt tips, some charcoal and a bit of white acrylic (partially because the lesson didn’t ask for too much more, partially because even if it had, I wouldn’t have been able to find anything!) It’s not my favourite page ever, but I wasn’t in a particularly arty mood when I was working on it, so I wouldn’t expect it to be! I’m expecting to be back in my arty swing this time next week, so hopefully have some more pages to share with you then!

D x


Playful Self Portraits

The page I’d like to share with you today is a response to Jane Davies‘ bonus Life Book lesson:



This one was quite fun to do as a ‘warm-up’, on an evening that I wasn’t feeling very creative. The background was a scraping of left over paint from quite a while ago, and the rest was a combination of collage, permanent markers and dimensional paint. Do I love it? No. Does it show any real artistic skill? No. Do I want a hat like that? Yes please.

To be honest the ‘collage body building’ is something I’ve done before, and I definitely prefer it when my face isn’t involved… and my fave lessons tend to be the ones that show me something I’d never have thought of on my own.

I’ll be linking this page up to Art Journal Every Day – don’t forget to hop over and check out the (much more gorgeous) artwork!

D x

Embracing All of You

Happy Friday everyone! And it is a Happy Friday for me – I’ve just had the complete Sky package installed so I have two blissful days ahead, crammed with unlimited box-sets and crime dramas. Heaven! I’ll also be hosting my first ever party in honour of the boyfriend’s birthday (Sunday) which I’m very excited about. Think homemade tacos and jelly shots…

Anyway, today I wanted to share an art journal page from Life Book, the online art course hosted by the magnificent Tam.



This is from one of the lessons of the great lady herself, and is focused around accepting the less delightful parts of your character.

As always there are things that I love, and things that I really don’t. The background has so many layers that can barely be seen in this photo, and I just adore it! The colour palette is a bit wackadoodle, but that’s what I was feeling at the time so I’m not going to complain. The part I’m not too keen on is the figure… these whimsical, doll-like figures are not really ‘me’. I prefer slightly messy, abstracted, doodled on people, but it was fun try out a new style!

Did I mention I now have a designated art room? This makes me so giddy!! For the first time ever I don’t have to hide my art supplies in boxes or under furniture… luxury!

So have you done anything creative this week? (If you have, you should consider linking up to Julie Fei-Fan Balzer’s Art Journal Every Day post)

D x

{Doodle Camp} Part 1

One of the online art course I’ve been really excited about this year is Doodle Camp 2013, taught buy the fabulous Dawn Devries Sokol of D’Blogala. A week long art camp that involved prompts, jumpstarts, technique lessons and inspiration all geared towards one of my favourite things… doodling!

The first part of the class consisted of making a journal to ‘take to camp’ with us. I was convinced this part would go wrong for me, but I actually love the result:


What do you think? I’m still contemplating  adding colour to my cover, but I’m not 100% sure yet…

I also prepped some backgrounds using Dawn’s techniques, but with a few different materials. I didn’t have a pipette so I used an empty glitter glue tube (I had no control, but everything has been infused with a bit of sparkle, which I love!), I also didn’t have ink at the time, so I used watered down emulsion.








Come back over the next week or so to see how I filled up these pages…

D x

Stencils, Masks and More


Today I wanted to share another Life Book page with you (if you’re interested, you can still sign up for Life Book, just click here). This one was inspired by Joann Loftus’s lesson ‘Stencils, Masks & More’ (she of the very cool, but very fiddly stained glass window lesson).



[sorry about the glare]


I really quite enjoyed creating this page even if it did bury me with a frustration or two… firstly I built the silhouette on really thick card so it was pretty hard to cut out neatly, and then I picked a pale colour for my first layer, so you couldn’t see the cool stencilling technique, and then my stencil betrayed me and allowed too much seepage. And just when I thought it was all over… I spilt my water jar on it.

But I decided to make lemonade so to speak, and scrape a quote into the soggy paint layers, which gives you a little peep of the journalling underneath. Despite all my troubles, I really love how this one looks. It’s entirely random, and a lot of it was remedial, but sometimes the best spreads are!

So have you been doing anything creative recently? If you’re an art journaller, link your pages up here, and I’ll come and check out what you’ve done!

Have a great weekend!

D x

Windows of the Soul

Has anyone else noticed how sweet the word ‘Friday’ sounds? I can’t wait to get out of the office and enjoy a little bit of this heat wave… locked in a room with lots of big windows but no air con is not bringing out the best of me!

Today I wanted to share another art journal page inspired by the Life Book course I’m taken. This page was a product of a bonus lesson from Kelly Hoernig (of the Game Board Page), called ‘Eyes Are The Windows Of The Soul’.

It’s hard to tell from the photo, but the eyeball is actually made of teeny tiny scraps of paper, collaged together and painted to add extra detail.


I feel like this page is a little… naked. I’m not really a minimal journaller, I’m more of a ‘keep piling crap on there until there is literally no room for more’ kind of artist. Having said that, I enjoyed trying something a little bit new. I like that the eye really stands out (especially as it took so long to do… I think I’d be a bit miffed if it blended into the background!), and I like that I got to showcase my new favourite stencil (which is actually just a piece of lace paper).

I seem to have accumulated quite a few Life Book pages that I haven’t got round to blogging about…  I’ve also done a bunch of spreads inspired by 21 Secrets (which is on sale right now – check out the link for more info!), and made a little journal filled with juicy stuff as part of Doodle Camp 2013, so expect lots of arty goodness over the next couple of weeks!

D x


Honouring Your Feelings: A Life Book Page

I’m back to share another Life Book page with you today. This one was inspired by one of Tam’s latest lessons ‘Honouring Your Feelings’. What do you think?



I have to say, I really enjoyed the process. You can’t really tell by this photo but the page is covered in lots and lots of layers of collage, paint, gesso and other messy stuff. It was a lot of fun to do, but I don’t love the page I’ve ended up with, and I can tell you why. It’s the squirrel. I love that my girl has this surly squirrely bodyguard to protect her but the thing is… I hate orange. I keep thinking it’s growing on me… but  it’s not. I considered just changing the colour, but I like that she ties in with the orange collaged feathers you see peeping through, and the orangey glow from the red hair. I also feel like there’s something a bit off about my girl’s face, but I can’t put my finger on it…

I know I’m probably far too critical of my own artwork, but I can be a perfectionist sometimes. I’m trying to be more free and uncaring when it comes to art, but it isn’t easy. That’s the main reason I haven’t just painted over the parts of this page that I don’t love… I’m learning to live with the imperfections!

Have a great weekend!

D x

P.S. Sorry about the slightly blurry photo, the light is not my friend this morning!

Divine Colour

Good afternoon everyone! I’ve been somewhat lazy over the past few days because I’m all fluey and feeling a bit sorry for myself. The one bright side is that I have had a chance to catch up on my Life Book lessons. The page I’m sharing with you today was inspired by Dion Dior’s ‘Divine Colour’ lesson. If you’ve seen any of her artwork around, you’ll know how vibrant and colourful she is in everything she does… so I was excited to learn from the master!

The first step of this lesson was to create a colour palette to work with (I’ve since invested in a colour wheel so I can play around with colour combinations some more). I picked the tetrad of yellow-green, blue, red-violet and orange for my gerbera, what do you think? (NB a tetrad is a combination of two sets of complementary colours)

She showed us lots of tips for using water-soluble media, and creating texture using everyday items (unfortunately I had none of these everyday items lying around… instead of cling film, gauze and bleach, I used kitchen role, string and nail varnish remover).

This is the page I ended up with:


It really doesn’t look like something I’d normally do, but I really like it. The photo doesn’t really do justice to the vivid colour of the physical page… and you can’t see the golden shimmer at all.

I hope you all have a great weekend, but for now I better get back to my Lemsip!

D x