Week 1 – My Living Canvas Online Workshop Page


Today I thought I would share my Week 1 online class project.  This is my first attempt at an art journal with mixed media.

This class is titled My Living Canvas by Christy Tomlinson and we are all being guided through the process of what brought us to the place we are currently in our life.  We are working through many different aspects of that process.  Week 1 helps us begin to define our story with specific “things” that have been crucial to our growth and development.

Christy used the butterfly to symbolize the metamorphosis or the cocoon to butterfly transformation.   I really like that concept since we all go through so many phases in our journey to become that beautiful soul we all want to be.  Since I am new to mixed media I thought I would do pretty much the exact pages as the examples we have been given until I feel comfortable with the techniques.  I will eventually venture out and design my own vision but until now this is how my first page looks completed.

Base Page:

I added a pretty turquoise background over white gesso.  I used the Crafter’s Workshop “splat” stencil and some Mr. Huey’s Color Mists.  I also added some stamped images from Stampers Anonymous using Black Archival Ink.

I decided to start with one of my darker subjects for My Story.   I wanted to make this page a happy ending however so I tried to think of how I could show a transformation from dark to light.  I didn’t want to leave a dark depressing page for my children to view.  I wanted them to see my process but , in turn, leave them with a positive ending since that is what I have now.

I began at the lower left hand edge and blended out to a butterfly that eventually repairs itself and develops into an independent, colorful, beneficial creature.  I stamped the padlock to show how trapped and repressed I was at that time.  My butterfly is colorless with a broken wing at this stage.  I then traveled across the page.

This butterfly has color and design on her…..she has become free and living her life for the first time.  Her wing is repaired and she can fly ever so freely.  Nothing can or will ever lock her away again!

This is a bit of journaling about how I felt when my divorce was over.  I chose my path and I am so glad I did.  I plan on making a pocket between this page and my next butterfly page where I can journal the detailed story and store it within the pocket.

I love the partial stamped image of this butterfly……she has hit a few bumps in the road but she eventually makes the transformation!

I picked positive words that related to my lessons learned and attached them to the page with Mod Podge.  I also hand wrote a couple more words throughout.  A bit of doodling and rub-ons gave it more texture and depth.

This is just an overview of the dimension of the butterflies on the pages.

I added a couple drips by the title and the crackle stamp to symbolize my life having been drained out of me and feeling completely broken.

All the butterflies were stamped in Black Archival Ink onto Whisper White Stampin’ Up! smooth card stock.  I used the Tim Holtz Collection from Stampers Anonymous titled Papillion.  I fussy cut them all out and glued them onto the pages.  Then I added paint and Faber Castell Big Brush Pens

Hopefully I have told my story clearly enough (without too much darkness) to give my children a feel for this part of my life.  My children are all adults now and even though they went through this stage of my life with me I think using “art” to tell my story gives it a more personal touch.  I hope to share many more pages and canvases  with you from the My Living Canvas Workshop.

Thanks for stopping by!

Darlene 🙂

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