Tip Top journals -for Terrie

This is the page spread I did for Terrie Lightfoot through the Tip Top Journal exchange we both belong to. Last summer, Frieda Oxenham and Debby Harriettha invited me, Terrie and 6 other wonderful artists to join them in this exchange. Each month we create a journal spread for a different partner on her chosen theme. Terrie's theme is Medieval, a theme that I am not too familiar with. So what did I do? I started with a search on the web to see what I could come up with for Medieval. I found an intriguing painting of the Tower of Babel and some other Tapestry designs. I gathered the images of the women (on the right side page) from an old issue of ARTitude Zine and found my Stampsmith Medieval Tile rubber stamps.

I do not usually work with a Medieval theme (I even had to learn how to spell it!) so this was a challenge for me, but one that I enjoyed. I started with a Google search to see what might inspire me . . . I love the Tower of Babel that I found! I printed this on a sheet of Sheer ExtravOrganza fabric, but left the backing paper on to give the image more oomph -- ExtravOrganza is very sheer and see-through. I planned where I was ging to place my images and used 3 kinds of Lumiere paint as a background behind them. I used a paintbush to apply Bright Gold first, then Bronze and then a newer light green colour called Citrine to all the edges and wherever there would not be an image. After the paint dried, I used a few Stampsmith Medieval Tile stamps with VersaCraft ink, which I heat set. Some of the stamps were used as a background and 2 stamps were used to make focal pieces. There is a little bit of text in the middle of the left page that you may not be able to read –it is a definition of the Medieval time period. I used beads and gold threads to decorate around the Tower of Babel and I got very messy with the paint . . . Steven was laughing at a brush stroke of gold paint on my upper left arm when he came home! He said I really "got into" my work : ) I love the other pages that have been created for Terries book and my page spread is a bit different; it doesn’t focus on a larger medieval portrait. I love that look but felt it was not something I could do! Instead I needed to gather a lot of smaller related things & work them together with my usual collage style, adding beads, paint, beads etc.

Just today, I found out Terrie had received the page spread I did and she loved it . . . . she wrote to the TipTop Journal Group:

"OMG! I received Lenna's pages today and they are simply DIVINE!!! I love your collaged pages! The beads, the gold thread and the Tower of Babel image is just FAB!"

~ Hooray! I am so very glad to hear that!

TipTop Journal spread for Judy Evitts

Each month I create a spread on blank pages from an 8x8 journal I have for one of the artists in the TipTop Journal group. We are all working in the same size journal so it's easy to pluck some pages, work on them and then just send the pages off -not the whole book. Sweet!! To see all of the spreads I've completed including this one click here.

My latest spread was done for Judy Evitts, and her theme was 'White Rabbit' as in Jefferson Airplane. Judy even directed us to a Wikipedia Link for inspiration!

I must say that I used that link to grab to the song lyrics. I printed them out onto a clear transparency with pink ink after changing the font to something a bit more funky. I specifically picked out a piece of wild tie-dyed looking fabric and some psychedelic paper (left side) that I had in my collage stash. I used twinkling H2Os for their iridescence on both pages, both painting & splattering. I found some mini heart brads (blue) from ARTchix Studio and added those . . . I had a postcard of Alice & the Cheshire Cat that I reduced & added along with a few other copies from an old Through the Looking Glass book, and I did a lot of sewing with decorative stitching to attach the fabric, the paper and just to embellish the page. I also added a bit of rubber stamping with VersaCraft ink: peace & love plus the chessmen (top right) from Claudia Rose. I've added some close-ups of the pages below. What do you think??

TipTop Journal spread for Caryl Hoobler!

(my pages for Caryl Hoobler below - click on them for more detail)

~ I am in the TipTop Journal exchange with 9 other wonderful artists: Frieda Oxenham , Debby Harriettha, Abby Lazar, Angie Hall Haviland, Caryl Hoobler, Judy Evitts, Paula Dion, Peggy Gato, and Terrie Lightfoot : )

The group's description reads: "We're a group of 10 mixed media artists participating in making journal pages for each other. Every month every artist will make a spread for one other artist and every month every artist will receive one spread from one other artists, till we've all received and made a spread for every artist in the group."

Frieda Oxenham pairs us with a different artist each month and we create a spread of pages for each other on a theme -we all chose a theme at the beginning of the exchange. Because we are all working in the same format/journal, we send just the pages to each other! Each artist can simply add the pages to her own journal, and then take out 2 new blank pages to do the next spread for the next partner. The group has created six spreads out of nine so far, pretty amazing! To see all my pages so far, click here and scroll down as the link will include this page too.

I was early in doing my last set of pages, Peggy's . . . and this time I am a little bit late with Caryl's pages which were due to be sent out by April 15th. Caryl's theme is Masquerade, oh my!!

Caryl wrote: Masquerade! (Venetian Carnevale, Harlequins or Pierrots). Background white & black, masks and costumes as colorful as you like!

Well, I must admit, Masquerade is not my "thing". But that is always good for me because it makes me do a little research, learn about something I do not know a lot about, and it gives me the opportunity to stretch myself creatively . . . . . thanks, Caryl!
I hope you enjoy these pages.

I printed out some of the information I had gathered about Venetian Canivale onto a sheet of ExtravOrganza -you may be able to see the texture if you click on the photos for more detail. First, I covered the journal pages with some handmade white paper that had black & white paper - sheet music - embedded into it. Then I sewed the ExtravOrganza on top of the paper & the journal page.

I found a number of Venetian Carnivale masks and had fun selecting some to adorn Caryl's pages. I also found an image from Alpha Stamps that was just right. This spread is really quite simple, but it felt "right" to me. I liked adding some of the history of "Masquerade" to Caryl's journal. : ))

Last, but not least, Caryl needed an appropriate mask TAG from me to add to the pages!

enjoy! lenna

TipTop journal exchange ~ for Peggy!

(Click on the scan for more detail)
I am really enjoying the Tip Top Journal exchange I am in with Frieda Oxenham , Debby Harriettha, Abby Lazar, Angie Hall Haviland, Caryl Hoobler, Judy Evitts, Paula Dion, Peggy Gato, and Terrie Lightfoot - wow! What a crew of talented artists. Each month Frieda pairs us with another artist and we create a spread of pages for her, sending just the pages. How refreshing!

On February 15th Frieda announced Peggy Gato & I were paired up. : ) We have a month to create our spread and everyone uses the same journal with removable pages to make it easy. Peggy's TipTop Journal theme is "A song to remember". This was a challenge for me until I decided I should use a song that has a lot of meaning for me . . . Sideways by Santana.
This is a special song for Steven & I that we first heard (and played a lot) when we were falling in love.

Steven found the lyrics for me on-line a couple of years ago, when I was curious to what was being said as I couldn't make out some of the words! I copied the words to a word document and changed the font, then printed them mirror image onto a transparency sheet so that the smooth shiny side would face outward instead of the rough side you print on : )

I combined the lyrics I had printed with a huge variety of Alpha Stamps images that were very romantic and appropriate, put together like a patchwork, with care not to obscure the lyrics. Some of the images are transparency images from both the Tallulah's Kisses sheet and Paris Showgirls #1 -- and some are collage sheet images from the Alpha Stamps Pendant Kit, Round Pendants, Valentine Bird Hearts , Tallulah's Nudes #1, and I used one fabric image from Alpha Stamps Lover's sheet, ooh la la! I wonder if Leslie from Alpha Stamps realizes how many romantic images she has now? ~ : ^ ) I used tacky glue to attach some of the images and a roll of xyron adhesive for the transparency images and the transparency with the lyrics. I used my bone folder and burnished a lot.
I finished the piece by adding some color to the pages with my watercolour crayons and a water brush and tried out a new white gel pen my friend and artist Carla Kurt gave me for my birthday when we met with our husbands for dinner on Saturday. I just love how this pen finished my spread of pages, thank you so much, Carla! I added a Moo card (mini card) as a Tag and happily sent this off to Peggy today!

Whenever I read these lyrics, the song plays in my head and I feel cherished and loved. Thank you Peggy, for this opportunity!!! To see all of my TipTop journal pages so far, follow this link.

Santana – Sideways

You know it ain’t easy
For these thoughts here to leave me
No words to describe it
In French or in English
'Cause diamonds they fade
And Flowers they bloom
And I'm tellin' you

These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
They've been knockin' me out lately
Whenever you come around me
These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
I keep thinkin' in a moment that
Time will take them away
These feelings won't go away
These feelings won't go away . . .
It ain’t easy
For these thoughts here to leave me
There are no words to describe it
In French or in English
'Cause diamonds they fade
(diamonds they fade)
And flowers they bloom
(flowers they bloom)
And I'm tellin'you

These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
They've been knockin' me out lately
Whenever you come around me
These feelings won't go away
They've been knockin' me sideways
I keep thinkin' that in a moment that
Time will take them away

These feelings won't go away . . .

Tip Top Journal exchange - for Frieda

Well, I must start by saying I am so pleased to be in this exchanged hosted by Frieda Oxenham and Debby Harriettha. Every month we are given a partner, for whom we make a page spread. We send just the pages! It is great fun to receive a set of pages every month, instead of wait for an entire book or journal to come home.

Most everyone n the exchange is using a 7-Gypsies blank 8"x8" journal; and if not, blank watercolor pages the same size. On December 15th, I found out my partner this month is Frieda! We have a month to create our pages and Frieda has already made a set of pages for me -- you can see them on her blog. They are wonderful and go so well with my nesting theme. Frieda's theme for her journal is Romance & Roses; two things I know she is very fond of! I felt a slight trepidation when undertaking these pages for Frieda, only because I admire her work so much and wanted to create something for her that she would love.

Well, I took my time creating these 2 pages over a couple of days and I am pleased with where I traveled on my roses & romance journey for Frieda! Take a look below and then I will explain a bit . . . . click on any photo for more detail.

The left side page of this spread started out with a photo copy of a library book I found called, The Romance of Roses! That is the orange-ish rose background you see, printed onto fabric with an adhesive background - easy to peel the protective paper away and cover the 8x8 page!
Next, I added an image from Frieda's favorite collage sheet at Alpha Stamps - Lovers. I cut the image I chose in the shape of a heart, and after reading Frieda's post on snow, glorious snow I had to frame this couple with a rendition of the pergola Frieda's husband made for their rose garden. So, I copied the photo from her post, enlarged it to fit the embracing couple, and printed it onto transparency film. It is a little blurry because I needed to enlarge it, but I love that you can still tell it is Frieda's snowy rose garden and her trees! I added some word stamping done with Fabrico/Versacraft inks & heat set, a transparency in the top right corner from the Kisses Tallulah's sheet - Alpha Stamps, an old envelope and postage stamp I found, some real rose petals plucked off roses in a vase in my family room and dried in the microwave. I finished this page with a bit of stamping with Brilliance inks - roses and leaf tips.

The right side of the page starts with another photocopy from the book I found at the Library - The Romance of Roses! This side has a beautiful Poem I thought Frieda would love and a little bit of a background of rose imagery. To the poem & the background I added an image from Alpha Stamps - Tallulah's Drama Queens. It seemed to illustrate the poem so well. I added in a leftover bit of the transparency photo of the trees in Frieda's winter garden . . . . some pink paper bits for paper making that look a bit like rose petals, some pink iridescent Angelina fibers, a bit of rubber stamping and I also did direct-to-paper way at the beginning! (thank you Judy for the reminder!!) There are real rose petals here too, and I punched a hole and dangled a heart in the corner . . . . . and the stamp with the heart in the hand is from Alpha Stamps.
Let me write the poem down, because I do not think you will be able to read it off the scanned page . . . .

Encounter, by Rachel Dacus, born 1949

Hidden below the stairs

I found roses running wild.

Holding the hose thoughtlessly

on a former flower bed, I was snagged

by their sickly stick canes and uncanny perfume.

No rose grew there before.

Shabby, hardened, they were sustained

on an occasional manna of rain

which they cupped with ragged hands

zig-zagged in desperation,

cannibalizing their own blooms.

A heat-crimped rose head

sang to me in a voice

florid as a lady's room.

In velvet centifolic depth

crawled with insects fine as pencil tips

It's blasted eye stared blind

from petals shriveled back,

I never planted a rose there.

In the middle of that wild bed

stood one untortured perfect bud,

a wobbling arrow of biology

thwacked into beauty's bull's eye.

Slowly, over a red canyon of time,

it turned and smiled.

No rose ever looked at me like that.

TipTop journal exchange ~ for Angie

I am in an exchange of journal page spreads, called TipTop Journals. Last summer, Frieda Oxenham and Debby Harriettha invited me to join them, and I said (without hesitation) - 'Yes!' There are 10 of us all together and each month we create a journal spread for a different partner, on her chosen theme. Here is what I created for Angie Hall Haviland - click on the photo:

We all are using the same size, and in most cases, the exact same blank journal with removable pages; this makes it very easy to create for each other. Angie had a 'free choice' theme, so I tried to think of what colors she might like and what I thought was important to her. I picked pink & gold for the colors and chose a theme of family, friends & love. Here's the left page - click on any photo for a close-up view:

and the right page:

I used both Angelina "film" and a bit of Angelia fibers, pre-printed words, pink flower petals used for paper making, itty bitty gold stars & gold star glitter, little bits of abalone shell and various handmade papers. The image of the man & woman on the left page (above) is from Vintage Image Madness - I love it! On the bottom of the left page and on the top of the right page are images from Tracy Roos 'Christmas Angels' ~ available through Alpha Stamps.

In my typical fashion, I did not really know what I was going to do when I started. I had a germ of an idea and I started gathering things that I thought might work for this page spread. As usual, I thought of other things or added items after I began . . . one thing usually leads to another when I create! I had never worked with Angelina film before. I tried ironing it, crumpling it up and finally got the most interesting results with my heat gun. This film is what is adding most of the irridescence you see to this spread. All in all, I am happy with how this piece came out and hope Angie enjoys it!

TipTop Journals - Lenna for Paula Dion!

I was a little late in getting this artwork for Paula Dion finished, but I completed my pages and got them in the mail today, only 1 day overdue, phew! (Click on any photo for a close-up). Paula and I are both in a group of mixed media artists gathered together by Frieda Oxenham and Debby Harriettha called TipTop Journals. On the 15th of every month, Frieda gives us a partner with whom we exchange pages by the 14th of the following month. We are all working in the same size blank journal (8x8) and so we simply take pages from our own blank journal to create on for our partner. Then we mail JUST the pages, not a whole journal, which has been really great!

Paula's Theme was Cowgirls & Prairie Doves (ladies of the night - Saloon Girls). To tell the truth, I had never worked on this particular theme before and I had no images on hand to inspire me. So I went to Google images and looked up various phrases - Cowgirls, Women of the West, Prairie Doves (soiled doves!) cowboys & cowgirls, etc. and found a number of good images. Then I started gathering a few fabrics I thought might work for the background; I knew I definitely wanted to use denim for Paula's spread of pages on a Cowgirl theme.

I originally thought I might work with the images I found right on top of a piece of old denim jeans. But when I went to play with the denim, I decided it might be too bulky to attach to the blank page. It was then that I got the idea to color COPY it. I laid a section of an old pair of Steven's blue jeans on top of the copier bed - inserted a sheet of fabric that was already prepared to go through my printer/copier and much thinner and flatter than denim - and pressed COPY! I was really happy how it came out, as when you look at a scan or photograph of my pages I bet you will think you are looking at a pair of real blue jeans. I did fool the eye a bit by removing the actual belt loops from Steven's jeans & gluing them directly on where they are located on the photo copy! I also took the real "Original" twill tape out of the real jeans & glued it on the copied pair of jeans as well.

On the left side of the page I use a transparency, which got a little muddled (I glued it on) but I decided it was OK after all. I added some small studs, a chain from a bracelet, some lace (one of paula's wishes!) bingo chips, alphabet letters that spell out "COW GIRLS", and a piece of 'rope' that ends in a tag with matching leftover printed denim fabric attached. This was really oh so much fun, Paula, ThANK You! Get ready to lasso your postmaster - the pages are on their way!

100th Post and a journal spread!

It's hard to believe this is my 100th post to this online art blog I started just this past January. Because of our moving and all I have not been posting as much lately, but I figure --that's just how it is! I don't have that banner you may have seen on other blogs up here (BWO: blogging without obligation) but I do think it has a very good message. SO, I do try not to worry when I'm not posting as much - like lately!

But I do have something to share with you tonight. I am in a Journal exchange as I mentioned in an earlier post called "TipTop Journals". We all started with the same size journal (8x8) and we are creating a spread of pages (2 facing pages) for a different partner each month. She in return will create a spread for me on my theme. Each month we send just our pages! What I like about this is that it only cost me $1.62 to send the pages I did for Debby to her, and she lives in Canada! Plus, I will receive pages on a monthly basis and fill up my journal as we move through this 10 month exchange! It seems like a great plan to me.

Debby's theme is Sepia & White and so that is what I was thinking of when creating these pages. You can click on any photo for a more detailed view. I reached for old embroidered linens of my Nonie's, old music & book text, some Renior paintings from wrapping paper, fabric, handmade paper and vintage lace. I glued and sewed onto the base pages and finished them by using some sewing themed 7Gypsies rub-ons I got from Alpha Stamps. I usually work with a lot more color, and most of my art supplies are still in boxes . . . so this was a challenge!! But I am glad I rose to the occasion and Debby loved the photos I shared, so I am a happy camper! I hope you enjoy.

journal Cover

I am part of a group of mixed media artists gathered together by the extreamly talented Frieda Oxenham & the very creative Debby Harriettha . Over the next 10 months we will collaborate on our "TipTop Journals". We are each starting with an 8x8 blank journal -theme of our choice, decorating the cover - doing a page spread ourselves if we like, for our own book. Then our job is to create a spread of pages each month for our mailing partner - Frieda matches us up with someone new each month! We are mailing & exchanging JUST the pages this time - a brilliant idea!
With all that I have been focused on as of late it will come as no surprise to you that the theme for my journal is: Looking for a Nest. I finally worked on my cover tonight, to give my partner a feel for my journal and my theme. I collaged fabric, paper, and photos of our new house and some photos of actual nests! I stamped feathers, nests and birds, did a little writing by hand and added a bit of gold (Brass) Lumiere. You can click on the photo for more detail. It certainly felt good to do this!
My partner is Debby, and I will create a spread of pages on debby's theme: vintage sepia & white, while debby will create a home/nesting page for me -- all by the 14th of October! The other participants in the group are: Abby Lazar, Angie Hall Haviland, Caryl Hoobler, Judy Evitts, Paula Dion, Peggy Gato, and Terrie Lightfoot - wow! I will be updating you on my journal spreads for these artists every month.