Saturday, November 14, 2015

Artful Journeys - Week #46 "Empty The Pantry"

This week at Artful Journeys we asked everyone to get creative with a bag, box or label from something in their pantry, using it in a creative way in their journals.

Naturally, I picked something associated with coffee.  There are 18 loose K-cups laying on my kitchen counter right now. Seems as though I have either used or pitched out every coffee box I thought I had...I have recently been purging and re-organizing my art space and it's not like I won't get more.  <grin>

In my honest opinion, I think that mixed media artists are some of the best people at reusing, recycling, upcycling and turning trash into treasure. I took this opportunity to do some of the same for this prompt, using some of the mountains of great stuff I have saved and have been sent by my generous art friends.  I started with the Eight O'Clock Coffee box of k-cups and began mulling over what I wanted to do while cutting the box apart.  I then cut up a really nice cardboard envelope that I received in the mail containing some stencils I ordered, prepped the backside with gesso and paint, rolled on with my soft foam brayer, using 3 colors of craft acrylic: Violet Pansy, Lavender and Diva Pink.  The gesso left bits of white showing through and I loved it!  It was messy, but in an orderly sort of way.  I cut it to 9x"x12" to fit into my Artful Journeys mixed media journal.

 Many of you know that I can add layers and layers of paint with no problems whatsoever. What I wrestle with the most is adding bits of paper and ephemera.  The concept of "JAM" -- just add more -- really doesn't work with my high sense of order and my compulsion to make everything in my life and art world the same...orderly! But I'm really working on that specific compulsion with my art.  I love, LOVE the grunge or JAM styles, but have trouble "just adding more."  So I dug out my paper ephemera container and started pulling things that spoke to me as to color, texture, re-useability.  I used a reprint of art given to me and made by Annmarie Killam, a bit of leftover painted paper received in happy mail, the inside of a Starbucks coffee sleeve, a scrap of a punch cut, some monopoly pieces and started arranging and playing.  Using my Signo Uniball 207 pen, I made some random marks on the background.  More playing around with placement of my "bits"; I fussy cut out the dolly image from Annmarie's artwork (thank you, Annmarie!) 

I decided the coffee box was too garish, so I applied some gesso with my hands and zapped it dry with the heat gun.  I am impatient, too!  When dry, I then outlined some of the letters with my Signo Uniball pen. Loved how the white gesso changed the whole look of that piece of box.

Now, time for glue and final placement.  I have recently discovered Tombow Multi Mono Liquid Glue (found it on sale at Wal Mart of all places) and this stuff is truly amazing.  It has a pen tip and a wide tip and is super-duper sticky and is quite versatile.  The packaging says you can adhere and then remove if you apply and let it dry thoroughly before attaching to something. For use as a permanent fixative, just apply and adhere to your base while wet. I'm going to test this "removeability" feature on some unmounted stamps and see how that works with my acrylic blocks.  The glue dries clear and is acid free and photo safe.  And the best part?  A little bit goes a long, long way!
So I got all my bits and pieces glued down and zapped again with the heat gun...the impatience thing again! 

I pulled out my Caran D'Ache NeoColor II water soluble crayons and used the turquoise, blue and back to add highlights to some of the bits and just smudged them with my fingers and some more outlining and doodly bits with the Signo Uniball pen.

One last bit of fiddling and I pronounced it finished.  This was a lot of fun, and for me, this was a good challenge, making art that was a little less orderly and "neat" and a whole lot of "just adding more.  I hope you like what I created!

Wishing each of you a wonderful week.  We know many are already beginning their Thanksgiving holiday preparations ... big cooking takes time!  But as always, make some time in each day to keep it artful!

Hugs and great art,

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