Daily Art Challenge: Feb. 28

Today’s challenge prompt is use a favorite quote in your art.

This can be a well known quote, a quote from a friend, a quote from a book…whatever you find meaningful, humorous or insightful works for this challenge.

Lately, I’ve found I like to use a very distinctive letter for the first word of a quote.  Almost like the old fashioned encyclopedias and vintage bibles used.  I enjoy creating a fancy and distinctive letter with lots of color, twists and curlicues while the remaining letters of the word are simple and straightforward.


This is a really cool way to give your quote an interesting start.  However you wish to design and use your quote in your art piece is great.  You can print your quote, hand letter it, use stickers or stamps, cut out words from magazines and books, or use your own handwriting.  Any option works.


Daily Art Challenge: Feb. 27

Today’s daily art challenge is to use stickers in your art.

Last week we began using our stash marathons.  Today will be another Use It Up Marathon.  As I mentioned before, I was using my stash to make paper bag journals.  Well, I found I needed letters for the book.  I have several sets of hand lettering, I have some from paper packs, and I have several options in my sticker collection.

By using my letter stickers to spell the word I want for the paper bag book, I’ve used up stickers that have been around for years and gave the pages a unique look too.   Normally I wouldn’t have thought of stickers for this project, but why not?  It’s a quick and easy way to add letters, words and numbers to a page or art project without any fuss or mess.

You Can Choose To Be Anything

Choose to be kind.

There are so many people walking around utterly and completely broken by their life circumstance. As I was driving my daughter home from the hospital yesterday, after the death of our precious boy Owen, I wondered how many others are living the worst day of their lives today?  How many others feel pain and grief so deep it actually hurts to breathe?  How many others are merely trying to hold on in spite of it all?

I remember very well a moment I had following the very unexpected passing of my grandmother.  I stopped at a convenience store to pick up some water and snacks to keep us going while at her visitation, which I was on my way to at the time.  I don’t know if I was simply to exhausted to notice or if I was so preoccupied I missed it, but I was not able to find the peanuts and sunflower seeds.  I must have wandered that store for 5 minutes.  Finally I asked where they were.  The cashier said, while pointing, “Right in front of you.  What are you, blind?” and laughed.  Others in the store turned to look at me.

After picking up what I needed, I stood in line to pay.  When I reached the cashier I said “My hope is others treat you with kindness following the death of someone you love.”

He told me to give him a break.

Of all the experiences surrounding my grandma’s passing-which includes my cousin’s husband stepping on my skirt and pulling it completely down-this is the memory that first comes to mind when I think of that time.  Would it have been so difficult to say “they are to your right, second row” or something similar?  Was it really necessary to be snarky and harsh?

My point is, do we really have to make life more difficult or challenging for other people?  Is it really necessary to get in that little dig, offer that sarcastic comment, give looks that show we think someone is a total idiot?  Perhaps they are so overwhelmed with grief they are not thinking clearly.  Perhaps they are having such a difficult time paying their bills they have to pay for their groceries with coupons and bags of change.  Maybe their child isn’t an out of control brat but autistic and unable to understand or process their surroundings…

The point is one never knows what burden someone else carries.  So, please, whenever you’re tempted to respond with  harshness or sarcasm remember you don’t know their struggle or their pain.

And everyone deserves a break.


Daily Art Challenge: Feb. 26

Today’s challenge is to pick an emotion and create a piece of art that expresses it.

The movie, Inside Out, is one of the most insightful movies on emotions and how they effect not only ourselves but all our relationships.

I’m not telling you what emotion to pick, or how to create the art.  Just pick an emotion and make a piece of art that reflects it.  Whatever that emotion might look like in art form.  This does not have to be an emotion you’re currently feeling, but maybe an imaginative look at one from a distance.

Creating art that speaks to emotion is what we’re all striving for.  Maybe yours will be a whirlwind of color, or stark black and white.  Maybe yours will be pastels and pink, while another’s might be reds, black and gray.  Whatever emotion you pick and however you wish to create it is fine for this challenge.

Weekly Techniques Challenge: Week 9

Alright let’s review where we are in our weekly challenges.

  1. We’ve made or purchased an art journal to hold our challenges. We’ve made a self portrait to include in the journal on the very first page.
  2. We’ve made value scales-both gray scale and scales for our most used colors in our art practice  Or (if we had already made the value scales) we made a Degas inspired pastel painting
  3. We’ve made color charts for all our media
  4. We’ve found our artistic voice
  5. We’ve blended colored pencils
  6. used metal grommets, eyelets or brads
  7. used Gelatos, part 1 and 2, through stencils
  8. stamped using unconventional items

The purpose of our weekly challenge is to learn new techniques.  To re-visit older art supplies and materials and incorporate them back into our art work in fresh and new ways. To learn who we are as artists, to be authentic and real in what we make.

The beauty of art is that it incorporates so many things.  It uses principles of design, elements of art, color theory, unique supplies and materials, fascinating techniques and methods, and encompasses a vast array of artistic options.  Art is paintings, sculpture, architecture, quilts, pastels, pencil.  The array of art mediums is as diverse as the art community itself.

Our challenge this week is to step away from what we usually make and delve into the unknown.  If we normally paint, let’s change it up and give sculpture a try.  If we normally art journal maybe embroidery or knitting would be a huge change for us.  If we create art with fabric, perhaps we could give watercolor painting a try.  If we have never used recycled materials to make something, now would be a great time.

The point of this challenge technique is to give your mind a chance to change gears.  To focus on something out of our comfort zone and shake up our everyday routine.  Honestly, if you step away from what you always do into something you never do, you will give yourself a chance to recharge your creative batteries.  You will focus on a different type of project, will overcome new challenges, will use materials which are not as familiar to you and you’ll create something unexpected in the process.

This challenge is very much like taking a vacation.  We all need a break from the everyday grind. Vacations give us the opportunity to refresh, reflect and refuel.  This challenge will give your creativity a chance to do the same.  By taking a creative break you will reignite the passion you may feel ebbing from your art practice.  So pick a project as far as possible from what you usually do.  The farther away from your daily art work the better.

Have fun and stretch your creativity.


Daily Art Challenge Prompt: Feb. 24

We’ve had a lot of rain lately.  Huge temperature spikes causing lots of melting snow and ice.  We have a pump which sucks the water up and it travels by pipe out into the middle of the yard.  Since we live in blow sand this works well.  The sand absorbs any water we pump over there and the water stays away from our house.

The pump failed to work.  Since we have shelves with a false bottom all along the back wall of the basement, we didn’t see any of the water.  We smelled it.

Scott just came running from the back room to get the shop vac.  We’re now in the process of emptying our back storage room of all my totes filled with fabric, patterns, flower stems, puppet materials, etc.  It’s a substantial amount of totes.

This is when I realized just how much stuff I actually do have in my stash.  We are going to be making project after project using up our stash of stuff.  Enough is enough…I may even need to learn to sew to use up all that fabric I bought.

So we are having another daily art challenge involving uses for our stash.  Today’s challenge is to use flowers from your stash in an art piece.  If you don’t have any flowers, you can make some from scrap fabric or paper.

As always, get creative and enjoy making your art.  The end results are not the important part, it’s getting creative with whatever materials you have available to you.



If You Could Spare A Prayer

Personal Post!  Don’t read if you don’t want to know.

Prayers for our daughter and her unborn baby.  She’s lost most of the amniotic fluid and she’s not quite 20 weeks along.  It is highly likely she’ll lose the baby soon.

This is devistating.

There are no words to express the anguish I feel watching my precious daughter going through this…

Daily Art Prompt Challenge: Feb 23

Today’s daily art prompt is to use fabric in your art work.  This could be fabric scraps sewn to paper for journal covers or tags, fabric added to paper dolls for their clothes or make fabric dolls, animals, puppets, purses, pocket pages, flowers, jewelry, hair ornaments, embellishments and patchwork squares.  There are so many uses for fabric and fabric scraps in your art work.

Include this prompt in your art journal or as an art piece.  I am finding I enjoy using my art journal for these prompts.  I like having them all in one spot where I can look them over and review what I did.  Obviously I’ll need more art journals to hold all the daily challenges, but since I make them from recycled materials that’s not a big deal.

I encourage you to make your own art journals as well.   They are very inexpensive and handy to have around for just these types of things.  I find I like making several covers in one day.  I use up a lot of scraps this way and I have a large selection to choose from whenever I need a new journal.  I make a huge variety of shapes, sizes and colors because I never know what I’ll be in the mood for.  I store them in a large plastic tote.

The signatures are usually made from recycled papers I’ve altered. I use papers I’ve painted or coffee dyed, as well as book pages, coloring pages, sketch pages, old watercolor paintings and junk mail.  Every time I want to make an art journal, I just grab what I need.  I can whip up an art journal in minutes because my components are pre-made.

Here are a few links showing how to make your own art journals:

  1.  Recipe Journal from Index Cards
  2. Manila File Folder Art Journals
  3. Loose Leaf Art Journal
  4. Junk Mail Journals
  5. Pocket Journal
  6. Art Journal Cover
  7. Cheap Art Journal Options
  8. Recycled Playing Card journals, ATC’s or techniques cards
  9. Loose leaf art journal from recycled materials
  10. Several art journal options and reviews

Relax and enjoy the creative process.  Let your art reflect your personality and the fun you have making it.