Art Journals: Simply irrisistable

Linda_Neff_mini_mug_shotI resisted Art Journaling for several years. I suppose it was because I basically didn’t understand the concept. I’m still not sure I understand it but I’m hooked now so it doesn’t really matter.

I’ve followed Margie Kemper for several years and have always enjoyed her colorful art journals. I also really enjoy following along with France Papillon and her Journal on Monday. Another favorite is Roben-Marie Smith. If you visit their blogs you’ll notice they all have very different styles – and I love them all!

Even though I have followed these designers for quite some time and read their blogs I just wasn’t getting the big attraction to art journaling. Then we were talking about art journals at Cracker Jack Stampers one night and my friend Robin stated that it was basically a place where you could experiment with design, technique, style. There was no right or wrong – it was a place to play freely. At least that’s the explanation I walked away with.

So, this year I decided I would try my hand at art journaling. I’ve decided to scrap in my journal. So as soon as I figure out which theme I want to scrap I’ll begin adding photos to my background pages. We’ve turned this into a monthly workshop at Green Door Studio and so far we’re loving it!

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Sometime during the month I peruse Pinterest in search of inspiration for an art journal spread. I pull out a few products and my journal paper and sit and play. I create my art journal spread and share those products and techniques later in the month during the workshop, giving the students total freedom in how they interpret what I share. It’s been so much fun, especially to see how differently the techniques and products are used by the students. No two pages look alike.

This month during my research I kept seeing cute little houses being used on art journal and scrapbook pages so I opted to cut some cute little houses of our own using my Tim Holtz Artful Dwelling die by Sizzix. I’ve had the die for at least two years and never used it. Fell in love!

Look what we did with them:

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Join us for our next Art Journal workshop slated for Saturday, April 26. Sessions begin at 10:30 a.m. and run for four hours that just seem to fly by! Call us at Green Door Studio (810) 225-9190 to reserve your space.

Project-packed weekend retreat sends ’em home happy, glittery & de-stressed!

Ive had a few requests to share pictures of the projects I taught at my first Fall Art Retreat held at Cottages at Sunset Shores. I was so pleased with the comments and feedback I received from the students. Everyone had a wonderful time, Vivian fed us so very well, the cottages are adorable and the craft room offered us plenty of space. Best of all – everyone completed their projects! Of course, we all know there are certain projects that are ever-changing. We add a little something here, change a little something there; but for the most part the projects went home complete!

I planned three projects to keep everyone busy throughout the weekend but still allow a wee bit of down time for Saturday afternoon. They really had no clue as to what the projects were. They trusted me and signed up sight-unseen. I dropped little hints every now and then, but no major announcements. They were given a supply list to bring (mostly consisting of tools) and I supplied the rest.

We started Friday evening with the beginnings to a Vintage/Shabby Chic coin envelope mini book with tags. This project would teach a plethora of techniques and carry into Saturday to finish up. We worked on that till nearly 11:30 p.m. then did some stenciling on their Vintage window frames so it would be dry in the morning. I had a selection of different sizes of Vintage window frames so they were able to select a style and size best suited to fit their space at home.

The window project also taught several techniques using gesso, stencils, acrylic paints, ultra-thick embossing enamels, dry embossing, tissue printing and using manly tools like power drills and screwdrivers! I must say, the group took their windows up a notch! They all turned out so beautifully. I love when students have enough time during class to experiment with techniques and the freedom to play and that’s what this retreat weekend was all about – time to experiment and play.

It took all of Saturday to finish up the windows and coin envelope books and we tossed in a make-n-take provided by Globecraft Memories using Piccolo Charms and Piccolo Enamels.

We finished the weekend off by making an ornament from Globecraft Memories using Art Glitter, Crafty Secrets, Piccolo Enamel Powders and some beads.

I don’t know who had a better time – the students or myself! I’ve already selected the dates for the Altered Vintage Winter Mystery Retreat to be held at Sunset Shores Feb. 22-24. Watch for more info to come.

Here’s the pics: click on any them for a closer view.

   

  

   

Candy Spiegel tells you all about her altered window on her blog. Hop on over and see what she has to say!

Fall workshops are just around the corner …

Even though temps are still pretty high around here my attention is focused on Fall – Fall workshops that is. I’ve been working on several projects this summer that will be offered this Fall as workshops and I wanted to share some sneak peeks with you all. My calendar is being updated as workshops get confirmed so check back often.

The first is this Christmas-themed configurations tray using Graphic 45 papers, Art Glitter, Globecraft Memories and Xyron. Go figure! I managed to work them all into one project that I think you’ll love to display each year during the holiday season. We’ll work with acrylic paints, inks, embossing powders, fussy-cutting, glitters and so much more! I’ve titled it “Compliments of the Season.”

This next workshop, “Glimmers of Hope,” came about as I was designing a project for the Graphic 45, Art Glitter and Want2Scrap Blog Hop recently. The project received so many nice compliments (thank you to all of you for those!), and is able to work so nicely into a workshop. I’ll teach you how to turn a Graphic 45 plain craft-paper box and accordion book into a beautiful keepsake. Once again, we’ll use those gotta-have-’em papers from Graphic 45, Art Glitter and Ranger products – more technique!

Who doesn’t love hand-made ornaments? These cute little globe ornaments from Globecraft Memories are so much fun to create with. You can put just about anything inside them – they’re not just for the holiday season! This workshop will really get into fussy-cutting using some Crafty Secrets cut-out sheets. We’ll add some bling, by way of Art Glitter and Want2Scrap and you’ll be able to play with the new Piccolo embossing enamels from Globecraft Memories too! Join me in this “Victorian Gewgaw” workshop.

There are a couple more in the works still. As soon as the samples are done you’ll find them here so check back often! Any of these workshops can also be scheduled for private groups of six of more in your home or other location. Contact me via my email: lneffscraps@gmail.com  to make arrangements.