One Color Background

IMG_1024 (2)

Brown/Sepia-one color, multiple art materials

Today’s background pages.  Here’s how:

I began by gessoing the pages, which I do on nearly all my art journal pages.  Then I pulled the modeling paste card.  Used that with a stencil.  Then added music pages.  The next card was interesting.  Use one color with three different materials.  I picked a brown/sepia color.  I used an Inktense block, a Lyra water-soluble crayon, and a Graphitint pencil.

My next card was acrylic paint.  I used chocolate brown metallic (which was the same as the other media colors) and highlighted the texture paste areas.  I aged the whole page with a wash of burnt umber.


The photo doesn’t look nearly as cool as the actual page.  The use of one color on the page really looks great.  I will probably add a quote or title and call this one done.  Give a one color background a try and see what you think.

Posted in Daily Art, DIY, Frugal Ideas, Make Your Own Supplies, Recyclable items, Stash Busters, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

DIY Texture Tool

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I have many old credit-type plastic cards.  One use for these handy little things is to cut the edges up to create textures on your art journal pages.  Here’s how:

IMG_1022 (2)

cut edges of card to make textures

Each edge is cut differently, giving you 4 options per card.  I have several of these.  I used a decorative edged scissors for one edge, a hole punch for another, and cut patterns with my scissors on the other two.

If you use modeling paste while art journaling, this will give you some really interesting textures on your page.  This gives you added variety, rather than only using your stencils with the paste.

You can make unlimited patterns which makes this a frugal, handy item to add to your art journal tool kit.

Posted in Uncategorized, Frugal Ideas, Free Stuff, DIY, Stash Busters, Recyclable items, Make Your Own Supplies, Daily Art | Leave a comment

Craft Room Essential TOOLS

Here is a list of tools I find to be essential in my work room.  These are suggestions for those new to crafting or setting up a craft room.

  1.  Hot Glue Gun.  This is a tool I use every day.
  2. Craft knife and blades.  This is something I use to cut out chip board images. I cut plastic stencils with my craft knife.
  3. Blow Dryer or Heat Gun.  Drys my work quickly so I can continue my projects.
  4. Ott Lights.  These are portable and powerful.  They can be costly, but in my opinion are worth every cent.
  5. Awl or pokey tool.  I use this to make the holes in my art journal covers for attaching the signatures.
  6. Paper trimmer.
  7. Easels.  I have portable, tabletop and floor easels.  Essential tools for holding your canvas while painting.
  8. Paint palettesHere is my review of paint palettes.
  9. Printer and Computer.  I use this daily.  I print instructions, I type up recipes for art supplies and materials, I print copyright free images.  I could not function without these essentials.  I consider them one item, as they work together.
  10. Credit Card Scraper.  Seriously, this is my most used tool in my workroom.  There are countless uses for this handy, free little plastic rectangle.  I have cut them up to make smaller wedges for use in watercolor painting-to make branches and trees, to make flower details, for texture on mountains and grasses.  I have several I use to add gel medium to my art journal pages.  I use them to smear paint and gesso around.
    1. I was fortunate enough to mention my desire for more gift cards (we have no credit cards) to my dear husband.  He travels for work quite often and has access to hotel key cards-which are also perfect for this use.  Quite often the hotel will give him several to take home.  He also is a safety director for a local trucking company.  In this capacity he orders the guys fuel cards.  Every so often they have to turn their old ones in and get new ones-he has kept the old, shut off cards for me.  I have-I’m guessing here-over 200 plastic credit card-type cards in a storage box ready for me to use.  If you are collecting them, remember you can use the cardboard ones that come in junk mail but they are not nearly as sturdy and reusable as the plastic ones.  For my bible-journaling class, I purchased 100 gift cards from Walmart-I put one cent on each card.  (I asked the manager if this was alright before the cashier and I did it, obviously.)  It may have helped that I was purchasing a tremendous amount of materials for the class at that time.  Since I was purchasing 300 plus dollars worth of stuff, the manager may have been inclined to allow this to happen…I don’t know.  Nevertheless, you may be able to purchase some from stores in your area if you don’t have access to any.


Posted in Challenge, Daily Art, DIY, Free Stuff, Frugal Ideas, Make Your Own Supplies, Organization, Recyclable items, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Clip Art Book

I noticed this book on my book shelf last night.  As I have mentioned, I have many many books.

This book is filled with over 5000 copyright free images.  There are people, costumes, architecture, alphabets and numbers, heraldry and armor, transportation, leisure and sports, Music, anatomy and medicine, flowers, animals, reptiles, birds, insects, fish, occupations…The images are copyright free, the way they are laid out on the page is copyrighted by the publishers.  Which means I cannot scan each page and upload it onto my blog for your use.

I think I am able to share individual images, however, and I will investigate that further.  I hope I am able to do that, as some of these pictures are absolutely stunning!

I am so thrilled I found this book on my shelf.  I have looked at the title many times in the past, but never really grabbed the book and looked through it.  It was one of my second-hand purchases, and I have made many, many of those.  I have bookshelves lined with books I purchased because I liked the title, the book cover looked cool, it was old and huge (for use in art journaling), whatever the reason might be.  Those books are separate from my bible reference/study books, my art books, my history books, my business books, my collection of biography’s, my instructional/classes-I’m-taking books, and my personal favorites.  Oh, and I have boxes and boxes of books which don’t fit on my bookshelves.

To say I have enough books to fill a small public library is not at all an exaggeration.

Once I have my own sketches uploaded for your use, I will see if I can get some of the images from this wonderful book onto my site.  I think you will enjoy using the artwork in your projects.


Posted in Daily Art, Free Stuff, Frugal Ideas, Make Your Own Supplies, Recyclable items, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

More Backgrounds

Another Mixed Media Mash-Up.

Here are the prompts used to make this one:


Book, Magazine, or music pages

Metallic Paint– I used metallic watercolors


Homemade Heart background stamp



Border- I used metalic paint, chocolate bronze

Stamps– I used the heart stamp earlier

Spatter–  I used white paint and an old toothbrush

Another background in my latest art journal.  I have completed three art journals since I began this latest a.j. adventure.  I have started a recycled art journal and have made at least 100 ATC backgrounds.  Art journaling is one of the most creative-and potentially inexpensive-art hobbies I have found.  I love the challenge of making wonderful things with recycled materials and the most inexpensive supplies I have on hand.

Enjoy your day and have some artistic fun!

Posted in Daily Art, DIY, Frugal Ideas, Make Your Own Supplies, Recyclable items, Stash Busters, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

My Sketches

are coming along.  I’m making buildings with windows, doors and chimneys which can be mixed and matched.  I am working on outdoor things like flower beds, flower boxes and swing sets.  I’ve made several Christmas items and am working on some commonly used household things like tea cups and coffee pots.

I have deliberately avoided looking at the Tim Holtz items, because I don’t want to be influenced by his work on my sketches.  Hopefully the end results will be something useful for all of you.  I will upload the sets when they are finished.

Posted in Uncategorized, Frugal Ideas, Free Stuff, DIY, Stash Busters, Make Your Own Supplies, Daily Art | Leave a comment

DIY Mod Podge


8 oz. white school glue/ PVA glue

3 oz. distilled water

Put in jar with lid and shake well.  Shake well each time you use it.

For variety:

Add 2 to 3 Tablespoons of gloss, water-based varnish to the Mod Podge if you want it glossy.

Add 2 to 3 Tablespoons of very finely ground glitter to make Glitter Mod Podge.

Keeps for ages.

Posted in Daily Art, DIY, Frugal Ideas, Make Your Own Supplies, Stash Busters, Uncategorized | Leave a comment