Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Step by step journal spread

Started with a green background of acrylic craft paint applied with a baby wipe.

Added some borders to the sides with scrapbooking stickers.

Added two types of paper tape to the top and bottom for more borders.

Glued in two cute vintage style images.

Added some small pieces of tape to the corners and some penwork with a couple of paint markers.

Put some more stickers in the corners and the center.

Added more tape for a decorative effect. I love that chevron tape by the way.

Added yet more stickers and some text.

And wouldn't you know it, I finished off with even more stickers, I'm obsessed like that!

Here's some details of the spread.

The stickers come from all over the place.

I have the expensive scrapbook kind, but also the cheap discount store kind.

And toy stores and offices supply stores are good sources too.

It's a lot of fun mixing and (mis)matching them!

Hope you enjoyed this view of my journaling process!

Monday, October 29, 2012

A journal for Kim

The past weekend my niece Kim celebrated her birthday. Because she's had some troublesome times over the past years and has handled it like a trooper I wanted to give her something to celebrate her survival instinct.

I also remembered she entered a journal giveaway of mine in the past and of course I know she's seriously creative, so I was left with only one option: I had to make the girl her own journal!

So last week I sat down in my studio and I made this:

It's a very simple one signature journal. The cover is made from a very sturdy textured paper (I know it looks like leather or something in the picture, but it's not). I stitched these tags/tickets by Tim Holtz on the cover with a sewing machine and also zigzagged the outsides of the cover.

I used the Tim Holtz tickets as tabs as well by stitching them to the outside of several of the journal's pages. They are a bit out of line here and there, but we'll just call that the charm of handmade things. Ahem...

Here's a detail of the binding: 

As I said it's a simple signature binding and this means it's just a bunch of pages of pretty paper folded in half and sewn together with needle and thread. To spice it up though I added beads and ribbons to the thread on the outside of the journal.

Here's a detail of the journal standing up, with a view of the back: 

The journal is full of beautiful handmade papers and it has a bit of a grungy handmade feel to it that I really like. Here are some samples of the spreads: 

If all has gone well she will have received the journal by now and I really hope she likes it. What I like about a journal like this is that it's easy to make and yet, because of the paper and some details it also can look really unique. I hope my niece will enjoy playing with it. I added some extra's in a baggy to get her started. Happy birthday Kim!

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy week!

Friday, October 26, 2012

My first homemade stamps

Recently I finally tried something that I'd been wanting to do for a long time, namely cutting my own stamps. It was a mixed experience as I ended up with two very nice stamps, but also with an injured finger! Ouch!

I started with a stamp block especially made for cutting stamps. I had bought it ages ago at an art supply store and expected to really like working on it. Here's what I ended up with:

On the left the block as it started out and on the right, obviously, my new very own chevron stamp. These cutting blocks are made of a soft material on top of a wooden block. But that soft material is not soft enough in my opinion and it's very resistant to any drawing material or markers. This means it was virtually impossible to put a design on there to cut. Also it was an unpleasant material to cut and I slipped more than once with my cuttingtools, in the end injuring one of my fingers and blood was flowing (okay, this sounds more dramatic than it was, but it did hurt!).
For stamping the block is absolutely perfect though, it takes the ink very well and it's nice and robust. It also has a good size (about 3x3 inches, but they come in bigger sizes too). Still, I don't think I will use this type of thing again. I'd rather just cut linoleum prints (which I have done before by the way).

To see if it was just me or if different materials would be easier I decided to do a second stamp and for this I chose a very popular cuttingmaterial, namely a soft eraser! That turned out like this:

Even though this stamp is much smaller and more detailed, it was also much easier to cut and much easier to make a mark on with a pen or pencil. I will definitely use erasers again and I hope to find some bigger ones somewhere. This one measures about 1.5 x 2.5 inches. It also takes the ink very well (I used stazon for the tryout of both stamps).

Here's an example of how the stamps look when they are actually printed on paper (in this case my Studio Book).

(The red ink blobs are from another time and have nothing to do with my bleeding finger, haha.)

I'm quite happy with how they turned out and I will make more stamps in the future, but I will be more careful with choosing my materials too. ;-) Still all in all, I'll consider this little experiment a success.

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy weekend! Now go make something!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Third Bronckhorst Journal (unfinished)

When I went on vacation a few weeks ago I had big plans, fun plans too.  I put together a simple journal and I was going to fill it. It was as simple as that and to make it even simpler all I took in supplies were some drawing pens and my watercolor box. Oh boy, was that going to be a colorful journal by the time I got back! much for the plans.

I did a little drawing, but mostly my journal remained untouched. The only times I worked in it were the first two days of my vacation. Those pages turned out really nice, but when I got back the journal was nowhere near filled.

I did a cover:

The front.

The back.

As you can see on the back I wanted to just play with art and stay away from the online world. Well, I kept my word on the latter, but the art play pretty much was non existent. It's not that I didn't have time, I just didn't really feel like it. I wanted to laze about, read books and do...nothing. It was my vacation dammit. ;-)

On my first day there I did do the insides of the covers and decided to turn those into a mini journal with the highlights of the day. Here's what those look like:

As the week went on I just got lazier and lazier and I didn't mind really. I enjoyed it, I enjoyed it a lot. It's just that this journal suffered from it by remaining empty. And now I suffer from an empty journal, a sad thing for an art journal fanatic like myself.

The only page outside the cover pages that I did was this one:

I like the bright colors of all these pages a lot. I don't like that there's so few of them.

But...during the week I did write in my notebook, took pictures, collected all kinds of ephemera and now I have this whole package of loose things that still needs to be put into this journal somehow. So that's my mission for the coming time: to fill this journal and make it work after all and decorate it with more watercolor doodles.

Keep your fingers crossed that I will get this job done!

Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy week!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Photography Friday

No idea what you call these in English, but they are pretty and red and orange and yellow, so who cares! ;-)

Low tide, blue sky, waves....aaaaah....inhale....exhale....

This is my town, Oost-Vlieland (of course it's also the only town).

The main road to the west side of the island, called Postweg (the road, not the west side).

On beautiful late afternoons I sometimes go on hikes after work and enjoy sights like this.

On the edge of the forest...

....there's a beautiful path to enjoy both trees and dunes at the same time.

Almost finished, highly recommend it.

Water leaves such amazing patterns in the sand.

Fall is here!

Mushrooms are taking over!

More sand patterns, these are very geometrical.

Symmetry and a perfect reflection, who can resist that?

Working on the third Bronckhorst Journal.

Me and my shadow wishing you a wonderful and artsy weekend!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Making a coloring book zine

For the longest time now I have wanted to make a zine. You know, one of those self published little magazines that you can find on the craziest subjects. However I had no idea what my zine should be about.

Then a few months ago I posted a picture on Facebook of some felt tip pen drawings that I had done and colored in and somebody asked me if I got the pictures from a coloring book. drew them myself! And then an idea was born: what if I made a coloring book zine? A little booklet with just some black line drawings that people could color in themselves. I might even ad some colored in images as examples. I loved that idea!

So a few weeks ago I started drawing with a black pens on drawing paper. I have six pages so far and I don't even know yet if I will include all of these in the final version, but to give you an idea of what I have in mind, here they are as a little teaser for what's to come.

So far these are loose pages that are A5 size. I don't know yet exactly how I want the zine to look, but I'm thinking the same size and then printed on folded A4's side by side. I don't know either if I will offer it only as a free pdf or also make a printed version. That's all to decide while I work on some more drawings for it.

The important thing is that it's fun to do and a new little challenge for myself to learn some new things, after all I never made a zine before.

Hope you are all challenging yourselves, no matter in how small a way, and that you're having a wonderful artsy Wednesday!