Saturday, September 12, 2015

Never Forsaken and Class Details

Hi folks! I'm back with a quick photo tutorial of my latest art journal layout. At the end of today's post is more detailed information about upcoming classes so be sure to read or scroll to the end for that information!
I started by covering an already painted art journal spread with a sewing pattern. (Sewing patterns make great art journal coverings!) I just used Matte Medium to adhere the pages.

Like many of my art journal pages, they start with a basic idea of what I want to communicate. This page was on my mind during an entire day as I thought about recent unsettling events. My husband got laid off from his 17-year job back in March. It's been almost six months and he's still unemployed (thankfully, we still have severance). It's been a stressful and emotional time as we consider all of our options, which include moving to another state, selling our house, severely downsizing, me going back to work full-time, etc. To be honest, my faith has been challenged....will I trust God even in the midst of a great trial? Granted this isn't the greatest trial a family could face, but things feel much more daunting when you have young children who need and depend on your care and provision. If my husband and I were without children, we would have already taken this adventure on the road in our RV! LOL! So with so many thoughts weighing heavily on my mind, I was greatly encouraged by a hymn we sang in church, and I wanted to capture a line from that hymn in my journal.

Next I added a few shades of Distress Paint, one of my favs for creating backgrounds because it remains slightly transparent, unless you use multiple layers, and blends wonderfully.

I also used Wendy Vecchi's embossing paste and stencils from Donna Downey and Tim Holtz to add another textual layer. PS - I LOVE embossing paste...I know, you knew that already, didn't you?
I then added some Dylusions Ink Spray, this was Crushed Grape. To be honest, I kind of wish I stopped right here because what I did next added to many more layers and work. However, this was a great experiment in persevering and continuing to work until I was happy once again with the results.
For this next layer, I mixed one part umber paint (Dina Wakley) with one part glaze, and then covered the entire piece with this mixture, let it set for about a minute, and wiped away the excess with baby wipes. This technique, which I learned from Donna Downey, really adds character and age to any project. I'm in love with the way the glaze sinks into all of the cracks and crevices. Dreamy... The only problem is that now my heart kind of disappeared into the background.
Before I started messing more with my heart, I did add some Glass Beads (Liquitex) and Glass Glitter (Finnabair) to three sections of my heart. The glitter looks amazing and the beads can be painted to blend in with the background, while continuing to add texture. Oh, and a bit more stencils, with a chevron pattern from The Crafters Workshop, and Distress Ink, as well as the addition of some stamping in black. The cracked glass stamp is from an older Tim Holtz stamp set. Now let's get on with the ugly...
By this point I had added my quote, using two different stamp sets from Tim Holtz. However, I still wasn't happy with the I added hot pink
Gesso to the rescue! And I don't mind that the pink is not entirely least the white allowed the heart to stand out more. I should also mention that I sometimes take photos of my project as I'm working on it. The photos allow you to see more detail, especially after you've been staring at the same page for a few hours. One of my earlier photos included a color scheme that I really liked so my goal was to get back to the former look. Gesso was just the first step...PS - I LOVE gesso too!
Here's after reworking the heart. I added more of the background paint color and used more Dylusions Ink Spray. I also needed to reapply some of the chevron stenciling. I was almost happy at this point, but those letters in the heart needed to stand out more...
So...I added just a hint of white, gently rubbing gesso over the raised areas. That helped to bring the letters forward while the rest of the heart remained embedded in the background. This is the entire finished spread (forgive my glare...I really need to find some diffused light! LOL!) I love how the glitter and beads are now part of the background of the heart instead of appearing to be separate elements. I never would have achieved that look had I not added more layers. So...the moral of the story? Don't give up! Not on your art, even if you don't like the way it looks the first time around, and not on trusting the One who holds the future securely in His hands...even if you don't know what that future is yet...I guess more layers still need to be added to our lives...

And now...Class Updates!

  1. I am now officially a new Michaels instructor! And my first FREE class will be on Monday, September 14 from 6:30 - 8:30 pm. The free class is an opportunity for me to meet some of the Michaels customers and to learn the ropes of teaching in the store. 
         The class will be focused on using Faber Castell Gelatos. During the class we'll create          eight swatch pages and them combine them into a swatch journal. Fun! Everyone is              invited so if you have time, please stop by for a free demo and to say hello! I'll be at              the Michaels in Epping, NH. The following products are required for the class, and                may be purchased at the or brought with you to class:

  1. My first home class with by on Saturday, October 3 from 1:00-5:00 pm. The topic with be "Art Journaling Made Simple." Cost will be $50 and I'll have a more detailed description of the class next week. If you're interested in signing up for this class, held in Fremont, NH, please email me at
Thanks so much and I hope you enjoyed today's project!!

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