dinsdag 31 mei 2011

Two new pages in my new art journal

Last week I managed to finish the two pages I made in my new art journal. I got a big A4 sized book from the neighbor of my parents. She thought maybe I could use the drawings in the book for my collages...but I loved the size of the book and it was perfect for a new art journal. The drawings in it were great too so you will probably see these again in my pages backgrounds.
Although...the first two pages are covered with thick layers of paper and paint so no sign of beautiful drawings so far...
I started this art journal with a collage, a spread! I don't know how it happened but it did..and I loved it.
Last week I wrote the text on the page.

All images and the complete background are magazine cut outs. The quote and doodling are done with Sharpies.

The second page was also doing nothing for a few days...waiting for the right quote.
I sponged acrylic paint through a Crafters Workshop template to create the wall. The white corner on the right was done with modeling paste, although it didn't quite turn out the way I planned.
(Inspired by Donna Downey's Inspiration Wednesday, here )
The poppies are paper napkins, glued down with Mod Podge.
The label on the right, with the date on it, is also inspired by Donna Downey.
I tried to paint the text with acrylic paint, watered down to make it more fluid. Unfortunately I'm left handed and it is hard to make a fluid handwriting that way with a paintbrush...maybe next time I should try writing backwards...


zondag 29 mei 2011

May I introduce to you...

Only seven nights sleep from today and he will be staying in our family for the rest of his life:
our Bernese Mountain Dog...


We can hardly wait but for now we have to do with the pictures...
Here he is:


donderdag 26 mei 2011


Nothing creative is coming out of my hands right now...Partly because I'm busy with other things, like three year old girls almost getting four....sigh...(Laura was cutting her own hair this morning. Luckily I found out in time so no much damage was done..) But mostly because I'm feeling restless. I know why because the rest of the family is suffering from the same 'disease': tired of waiting and so looking forward to our new familymember, the puppy. This Saturday we will be going to see the puppies again and than we will know which one will be ours! Another eight nights sleep after that and our home will be his home! In the meantime I'm making our house and garden 'puppy proof'...

Last sunday I started a new art journal, with the intention to write daily or weekly about the things that are going on in my life. I'm not a journaler at all so I thought this would force me to step out of that well known comfort zone...Nope! The first thing that happened was a collage, just like I did in my other journals. I loved the collage but it wasn't what I had it is still waiting for the 'big paintmarker attack'...I flipped to another page, grabbed my paint and started on a new page. No, too dull...So I flipped again to another page...stamping, painting, glueing things, still not satisfied...
Yesterday I bought a big bucket of gesso so I think I'm gonna start these pages all over again...with a fresh layer of gesso!
Ok, I finished one project last week: decorating the cradle for the dolls at the playgroup of my youngest!


vrijdag 20 mei 2011

If nothing ever changed...

...there would be no butterflies. How true is that? Change is good! At least...most of the times...

Today was a perfect day to create for me! My youngest always goes to 'school' on Friday morning. For her, school means a playgroup for kids from 2,5 years till 4 years. (At four they go to a primary school here in the Netherlands...every day!) After school she went home with one of her friends to play there all afternoon. My oldest two kids were in school till three so today was a day for me, me and me!!!
First I went jogging for 40 minutes. Than I did some bloghopping while I was enjoying a cup of coffee.
Unfortunately I had to do some shopping but after that it was time to create...for four hours in a row, with no kids around...only me, me and me!!! That was pure luxury for me. If I get to spend so much time on creating it is after nine in the evening and I have to go on till midnight....hardly ever does this happen during daylight... So I didn't think about the big pile of laundry waiting for me...I covered my dining table with plastic, got all my paints, sprays and masks and started on a new canvas.
I had nothing specific in mind, I just started playing with layers of paper, colorwash, paint and ink.
This time I made a picture after each layer:
Layer 1: paper

Layer 2: colorwash and masks

Layer 3: I didn't like the effect of the masks, so I added more colorwash and did a lot of 'drippage'! I also stamped some texture with black Stazon ink.

Layer 4: acrylic paint on the sides.

Layer 5: I painted a big lasercut chipboard butterfly (Buzz & Bloom) and embossed it with Ranger holographic embossingpowder. I did some pink dots too.

Layer 6: I added the quote and wrote some white dots with a paintmarker.

At this point I thought it was finished so I cleaned my table. I put my canvas on a display and went on with my normal day. 'Me-time' was over!
But each time I passed by the display I stopped, looked at it and I knew something was missing.
So I got my things back on the table and added some more buterflies and some more white dots. I also doodled some more with my black Copic Multiliner.
Et voilà !

Of course I painted the sides of the canvas too:


donderdag 19 mei 2011

Flying blind

A new page in my art journal:

I was just playing..again..with some magazine cut outs and created this collage. I didn't have some journaling in mind but when I heard this song of Ilse de Lange I knew I had the title of my page. Although I can sing a lot of her songs by heart, including this one, because I'm a big fan of hers, I looked up the lyrics and added parts of it to the rest of the page.
Unfortunately my scanner doesn't recognize the fluorescent colors somehow. Her dress is orange and her shirt is pink in real life!


maandag 16 mei 2011

Chill out, mom!

My Sharpies arrived today!!! (Sharpies are not available in the Netherlands so I had to order them in the States...)  And of course, I couldn't wait to play with these! (...and now I want to have
My page is inspired by my kids again. This time it is all about my daughter Danique.
When I saw the image of this girl in an add of Steve Madden Shoes I had to use it in my art journal. No collage of different body parts this time, just the complete picture.
I had glued it in my art journal a while ago, just like I had made the background. For the background I sponged several colors of acrylic paint on one of my favorite The Crafter Workshop template ('Houndstooth'). So I just had to add the doodling and journaling today!
Because the image reminded me of Danique so I wanted to add some story about her, which fits the look on the girl's face.
(click on the picture to make it larger if you want to read the journaling..)

The journaling is in Dutch so I will translate it:

Just a conversation with Danique:
Me: Niek, will you please stop playing on the computer? Your time is up.
Danique: ... (silence)
Me (little bit harder): Niek, will you please stop playing on the computer??
Danique: Huh?...
Me: Stop playing. Your time is up!
Danique: Oh, come on...right now?!..X just got online!
Me: Too bad. Tomorrow is another day. Quit! now!
Danique: ... (mutters)
A few minutes later...
Me: Niek, I told you to stop playing!
Danique: Yeah...I heard you, mom!
Me: So why don't you quit than?! Close the program or I will clic the red and white cross for you!
Danique: Chill out, mom!..You don't have to get angry right away!!!!

I'm sure there will be mothers among you that recognize this! (lol)


zaterdag 14 mei 2011

The parents of a teenager....

I just finished a new journal page...completely inspired by my teenagers....which I love so much but really, there are yesterday....that I can 'glue them behind the wallpaper'...with all my love!
My 13 y.o. son 'If it is not about me it is not interesting..' sometimes lacks complete respect for me and is someone who wants to have the last word...always!...My 10 y.o. daughter is doing the same and together they try to irritate one another as much as they can....Than there is my youngest of three copying what she sees...'Hey, if they scream, I can too!..But harder!'...sigh....
I was so glad when they were up in their rooms and I had some peace and quietness in the house!
Now I've finished my page I realize that my subconsciousness must have created this page. I had no intention to create a page about this subject. I was just going through my stash of magazine cut outs, creating the collage. I glued it in my journal and went to bed. This afternoon I added the doodling and when I bumped upon this quote I knew this would have to end up on my page! Funny, isn't it?


donderdag 12 mei 2011

Workshop with Linda Elbourne

Last weekend I went to a workshop with Linda Elbourne in De Craftorij. She was doing a Stampotique Screen workshop, making a little chipboard screen decorated with Stampotique stamps.
Of course I took my camera with me..but with an empty I couldn't make my own pictures.
We worked with products like Colorwash, Distress Stain, Perfect Pearls and great stamps of Tim Holtz to create the background on the screen. The Stampotique girls and boys were colored with Distress Ink too, cut out and attached to the screen. We created little embellishments with shrink plastic.
Here is my result of the workshop:
 (the front)

(the embellishments of shrink plastic)

(the back)

In the workshop was a Stampotique stamp included. So hard to choose...I love them all!..., but this one will be popping up in my art journal soon!


zaterdag 7 mei 2011

Meeting our new family member!

I think I wanted to have a dog all my life and soon it is going to happen! We decided to welcome a new family member, a Bernese Mountain Dog. Because of practical and financial reasons (and a waiting list..) our new baby will be entering his new home in the beginning of June.
Two weeks ago we met our baby for the first time. He was two weeks old back then and has 4 little brothers and 6 little sisters! We hugged them all because we are not allowed to chose OUR baby before he is six weeks old. I could have stayed all week between these puppies....soooooo sweet!
This was two weeks ago:

Unfortunately the rest of the pictures were too dark....

And we had another 'situation' that needed our attention immediately: Danique was so scared for the big dogs, walking around the garden, that the only thing she wanted was to go back in the car. She was really panicking and crying and didn't want to do another step forward. The owner of the dogs decided to put the dogs inside the house, so Danique could see the puppies first. Danique was hesitating but she did go to the puppies. After we insisted that she should sit between the puppies and hug them, she did. But we realized we had a problem now: it isn't a wise thing to take a dog in our house when we have a daughter who is afraid of dogs...By the way, we knew that she was afraid of dogs but that this fear was so, we really underestimated that! She has never had a traumatic experience with dogs. I think that she was afraid because she wasn't used to having dogs around and didn't know what to expect. We asked her several times before we even made the final decision if she wanted to have a dog too. She was really looking forward to the day we would see the puppies...only the big ones were much bigger than she had expected and she just wasn't prepared for that.
So we left with mixed feelings that day. Could it be that we were taking the wrong decision by having a dog? We couldn't risk to have the dog and bring it back later when Danique doesn't get used to the dog. That wouldn't be right for the dog, for Danique and for the rest of our family.
I decided to ask the local school for dogs here, tell them my problem and ask for advice. And the owner of the school did such a great job!!! She asked one of the trainers, who works a lot with kids too, to help us. This woman invited us to come to the school, made sure there were no dogs in the room where we sat and talked to Danique first. Than she brought in a big, dark German Shepherd Dog...after Danique had given her permission of course. Danique was just a second away from climbing in the curtains when she saw this dog. The dog was very sweet by the way. He was very impressive with his big black head but very calm and sooo sweet. Step by step the owner persuaded Danique to come closer and in about 15 minutes Danique was stroking the dog's back. Another 15 minutes Danique was walking outside with only the owner between her and the dog...and at the end the dog was sitting next to Danique and she wasn't afraid!
We did another training with Danique at this school last week. This time she met a Boerboel dog, like this one (even bigger!):
The dog was really big, almost as big as a Shetland pony! He was very well trained and even a bit of a softy. His trainer told him to ly down and was feeding him treats while Danique narrowed the distance to the dog step by step. Within 5 minutes she stroked his back and another 5 minutes later she dared to feed him some treats, together with the trainer. I think she loathed the drooling of the dog more than that she was afraid of him!
We all were so proud of her. She really had overcome a lot of her fear.

Still, with mixed feelings we left to visit the puppies yesterday. How would Danique react now when she sees the big dogs? Would she still be afraid? This was the moment. This meeting would decide whether we would go on with this or cancel the whole 'dog thing'.
Well, the next pictures say it all:
 This was yesterday:

Danique showed no fear at all! She only hesitated a little bit when we entered the garden and saw a big dog coming towards her. Like she had learned she ignored the dog, stood still, allowed him to sniff her trousers and walked further. One minute later she met the mother of the puppies and almost immediately stroked the head of the dog! The dog was pushing his snout against her hand, asking for her attention and you know what she told me later the evening? "Mom, I wanted to wrap my arms around this dog and hug him!!!!"
She loved the puppies...we all did of course..and she even wanted to have one on her lap.
I think I couldn't be more proud of her!!!! She did great !!
In about two weeks were going to meet the puppies again and than it will be the moment that we can chose which one will be ours! I can't wait!!!


dinsdag 3 mei 2011

In the middle of a dream...

Here is my page for the newest prompt at A Year in the Life of an Art Journal:

Prompt: Busy!
Song: Manic Monday by The Bangles
Product/technique: lace/trim

The first thing about the prompt 'Busy' that came to my mind was my mind itself! I don't experience much stress in my daily life. My agenda is not overloaded with appointments, I'm a stay-at-home-mom so I don't have to run to work. Of course, being a mom of three (four if I include my with all of them having their own agenda, it takes some planning and organizing but hey..that's part of the job, right?
So, from the first second I'm awake my mind starts working: planning, organizing, thinking, making lists, etc. No stress, just making sure I have everything under control... 

I glued down a page sized picture in my art journal. The picture was in my stash for some time already. I had torn it out of a magazine just because it spoke to me. After reading Marit's blogpost, about her way of working in her art journal by just glueing images in her journal because she liked them and work on the pages later..(still following me?..), I was inspired. So I glued down several images in my art journal...this was one of them! When I read about the new prompt I knew I had to use this image.
I sponged acrylic paint (watered down) around her head to create the 'sleepy' mist. I drew some thick black and white lines to created a scattered look...or better: a scattered dream...
I didn't follow the third part about the lace exactly. I simply couldn't think of a way to incorporate lace into my page. I used some bakery twine instead, which I stitched on the page.
The perfectionist in me is not completely happy about the journaling. A tiny inner voice is saying: "You should have used a template or something for your letters. You should have thought about where to write your words."
But since I'm trying so hard to play more in my journal and not make everything balanced and perfect, the other inner voice was much bigger: "It is your journal page! It doesn't have to be perfect! It is your own handwriting, written down straight from the heart! "
So Í'm happy about my page!
...Is anyone else having little gearing wheels and voices in her head too, working overtime??!!...


Time for family!

Last Sunday we went to Apenheul. Thanks to a great discount we got, it is fun to go on a trip when you are a family of five...The weather was great, we got to see a lot of 'the rest of our family' and we took a lot of pictures. I bought a new camera last week (Canon Powershot SX210 IS) and of course I was anxious to try it! We also took my Canon SLR (EOS450D) and even the youngest of our family (3 years old..) knows how to use both camera's! So both camera's switched between all five of us, all the time, which means we got a lot of 'different' pictures...:

Laura loved to eternalize her rice cracker....

Mitchell thought this was fun...(lol)

And this....

Is he trying to tell me something???

The kids gave her the name Kiki...Unfortunately my little monster Laura
stepped on it a few moments later, so R.I.P. Kiki.... 

My all time favorite animal, the silverback gorilla!!

Trying the maximum zoom on my new camera!

Look what flew over our heads and landed in the tree right above my head?
Luckily I was smart enough to step aside immediately...I was apparently sitting under his toilet branch!

Two of my own monkeys!

My own silverback...with his little monkey girl!

Again....with my crazy monkey girl!

Monkey training...

Little monkeys LOOOOVE icecream!

And some inspiration...
We had a great day!