Thursday, September 28, 2017

Finding Nemo Meets Dylusions

This is what happens when Dylusions' Under the Sea critters meet the theme "movie quote".

I know its the seaguls that are famous for the quote "mine mine mine..." but I'm sure the little crabs said it too! As well as "hey hey" :) lol Will just have to watch the movie again!

The background was made using Distress Ink Sprays (Dylusions Ink Sprays and watercolours can also be used) then stamped with the long spotty (used as seaweed here) Stampers Anonymous Classic Borders and IndigoBlu Ink Splats stamps. I also stamped Darkroom Door Polka Dots background stamp with water, not that it showed very well. Looks fine in the photo!

More layers were added using Tim Holtz layering stencils (Splash, Bubbles) with Distress Inks in Picket Fence (white), Faded Jeans and Mustard Seed. 

Next was the circle from Tim's Brush Strokes stamp set. This solid looking stamp set is fantastic for kiss stamping, adding large areas of colour and using as word bubbles :)

Using Yasutomo Mineral Multi (Mixed) Media Paper and Archival black ink, I stamped the crabs and fish from Dyan Reaveley's groovy stamp set.

I coloured them with Jane Davenport Mermaid Markers. This unique paper doesn't soak up the ink, but lets it sit on the surface allowing the colours to blend beautifully as it dries.

Too much water and ink creates a bit of a mess (as you can see with the crabs) but that doesn't matter when they're being cut out.

Cutting the Mineral Paper was different to other mixed media paper. Made from rocks instead of cotton or trees, its a paper similar to Yupo but thinner/lighter, and is so smooth the scissors glide through easily, hardly any friction at all.

I used the Kuretake Hikkei Brush Pen (black marker) for extra details on the fish and crabs, as well as the words. I also used my white Sharpie for the eye highlights.

Overall, the page turned out ok :)

It was alot of fun using these critters... they always make me smile! Hope Jo likes this new addition to her book :)

Thanks for visiting my blog. Have a happy day!

Retail Therapy...
The following are a few treasures used in the creation of this art journal page.


Friday, September 1, 2017

Silhouette Art for Roz

Deciding what to create for Roz's book of silhouette art wasn't easy... I went from seadragons (cos I had a couple left from last time) to fairies, then wildflowers in the style of Rackham (cos his illustrations are incredible), then diecut cities (so I could use Tim's village dies).

But the page soon decided for itself once I started... I've been favouring greens and turquoise lately so when I took out the Dylusions acrylic paint, it wasn't really a surprise when the page turned seagreen!

Dylusions paint is beautifully fluid. I haven't used it for ages... the colours blended and overlapped wonderfully. I didn't take any photos before the page was finished so can't show you what it looked like before... it was just lines and swishes of green, yellow and blue. I left it to dry overnight wondering what I was going to do. It was just a mess!

The next day I gathered all my stencils that resembled leaves, bubbles, swishes, coral and anything watery.
I used my round mini blending tools with Distress inks in Peacock Feathers, Walnut Stain, Peeled Paint Oxide, Chipped Sapphire and Picket Fence.

The sea dragons were cut out from watercolour paper by my clever Dad on his scrollsaw a couple of year ago. Its great to share his wonderful creations this way :) Its on my to-do list to learn how to use his groovy machine.

The sea grass I hand cut from tissue (left plain) and scraps of card (stained with Black Soot and Walnut Stain Distress ink). The leafy sea dragons and grasses were glued down with Ranger's Matte Glue n Seal.

One leafy sea dragon was stained with Black Soot and Walnut Stain Distress ink and the other two were painted with white paint to add a bit more contrast. The paper took on a green wash while gluing seagrass.

I felt that being a journal page it should have something meaningful about it...  Tim's Design Tape, Chatter, came to the rescue cos I couldn't think of anything! I love the simplicity of this tape, its full of positive inspiring words in black and white.

Not quite technically correct but I'm happy with it :)

Thanks so much for this fabulous theme and this time in your journal Roz, its been wonderful!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Leafy Sea Dancer Art Journal Page

In July, I had the privilege to create a page in Sharon Roger's Seahorses and Mermaids themed journal. This journal is travelling around Australia and each time we all work in a book, we blog about it so everyone can see how each book is going. Its wonderful to see all the beautiful artwork, then one day our own book finds it's way back home and seeing it all in real life is something else.

You can see all the incredible art journals here... Australian Art Journal Swap Blog.
The best Facebook art community is here... Australian Art Swap Group.

While I've already blogged about this page in the group's blog, I wanted to add info on where to find Mum's beautiful book and where buy supplies in case you'd like to have a go (I just happen to have a shop filled with arty treasure).

Seahorses and Mermaids is a brilliant theme :) I love creating with the gorgeous colours of the ocean. My clever Dad used to cut out amazing shapes by hand on his scrollsaw and his leafy seadragon is perfect for this occasion.

Searching for a quote, I remembered Mum had published her book in black and white as well as colour... and given that we'd coloured in part of this book, I didn't feel bad using one of its pages to take advantage of its swirly writing style. I don't like cutting up books!

The Leafy Sea Dancer was written, illustrated and published by my Mum. I have clever parents :D

Link to Mum's Lulu storeElizaJay's Bookshop
There are two versions published - one black and white (black cover, shown above) and one full colour (blue cover).

The page in Sharon's journal has a flap. At this point, I didn't know what I was going to do, apart from use my fave colours and leafy seadragons!

This book has been made using watercolour paper and the inks blended so well. If you don't have watercolour paper (as a pad, sheets or a journal), ensure you prime the surface with gesso before you begin (and let it dry). Gesso allows the inks to blend rather than just soaking into the surface.

I sprayed the page in the 3 Distress inks and splattered it with water. I thought I took a pic of that but its not there... It was such a gorgeous mermaid blue green mix of splatters!

I smeared the whole page with Ranger's Texture Paste in Translucent Gloss, thinking of making it swirly wavy textures. But it ended up smooshed like this instead.
I'm learning to let the art do what it wants, usually its right. The times I "argue" and keep trying to do what I want, it turns into a disaster! lol :)

While the texture paste was wet, I pressed bubblewrap over it all... then used the bottom of a reinker bottle and pressed out those bigger bubbles.

Then I dropped on Distress Dry Glitter in tiny mounds and light sprinkles... can't really see it in the photos, but its super sparkly and shiny!

The splatters of limey yellow and dark blue are from dripping Distress Oxide Ink from the Reinkers. I started this one drip at a time, then shook the bottle like a salt shaker :) Amazing effects took place, depending whether it touched wet texture paste or dry glitter.

Waiting for art to dry isn't easy sometimes... but thankfully the seadragons needed some attention!
Here they are after being splattered with Distress Oxide Reinkers in Twisted Citron, Peacock Feathers and Salty Ocean, then misted with water to encourage the ink to blend.
The scrap paper they're lying on was going to become seaweed but didn't end up being used.

Dried seadragons were edged with Ground Espresso Distress Ink (ink pad and blending tool) then added highlights using watercolour markers (Jane Davenport Mermaid Markers in Beach and Pirate's Gold - peach and yellow). I used white and black Sharpies for the spots and eyes.

Closeup photo of the groovy texture paste after it dried. When the Ranger Gloss Translucent Texture Paste is wet, its has a milky appearance but it dries beautifully - the gloss is super shiny and the colours jump off the page!

This pic reminds me of algae and seaweed :) Loving these colours!

The seadragons were glued to the page using Glossy Accents... the seadragons themselves are only a little bit sparkly, thanks to my un-precise glueing but I did add a few swishes using my Wink of Stella pen in Clear Shimmer (iridescent brush pen).
In real life, the seadragons appear lifted off the page, yet when photographed above, all the colours appear to be blended together. The closeup photo is a better indication of how it looked before I added the Stella to the ends of the seadragon's leaves :)

Leafy seadragons are such gorgeous, magical creatures! They're found in a few places around the world, one being along the coastline of South Australia, offshore from Normanville and Carrickalinga.

This is the wording I used is from the actual page from the book. Mum made the text in her book appear to be waving and bending over the pages :) The illuminated letter of the G was drawn by Mum too and was the original design for the Dad's shape.

"Gracefully swaying without need for speed, are creatures of beauty disguised as seaweed."
by JE James

Supplies List...
Art Journal or Paper - watercolour, hot or cold press
Dina Wakley Gesso - clear, white or black
Liquitex Gesso - clear or white
Tim Holtz Distress Ink Spray - Mermaid Lagoon, Twisted Citron and Cracked Pistachio
Ranger Texture Paste Translucent Gloss
Tim Holtz Distress Dry Glitter
Tim Holtz Distress Oxide Reinker - Twisted Citron, Peacock Feathers and Salty Ocean
Jane Davenport Mermaid Markers
Black Waterbased Sharpie Paint Pen
White Waterbased Sharpie Paint Pen
Wink of Stella Clear Shimmer Brush Pen
Distress Ink Pad - Ground Espresso
Ranger Ink Blending Tool - round foam
Ranger Glossy Accents
Dina Wakley Plastic Spatula
Tim Holtz Spray Bottle
Bubblewrap - FREE with nearly every purchase!

Everything is available at Art by Jenny

The following are available by request ...
The Leafy Sea Dancer by JE James
Woodn Marbles Leafy Seadragon Handcut Shapes - watercolour paper or chipboard

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Love Birds ATCs

These ATCs were made for a swap with the FB Art Swap Group for the theme "Feathers".

I used Darkroom Door stamp sets 'Feathers' and 'Love Birds' with Distress Inks, Liquitex mixed media paper and mulbury paper. 

Firstly I inked and stamped feather stamps onto the mulbery paper using Distress ink in Peeled Paint, Twisted Citron, Tea Dye and Peacock Feathers. I just kept inking and layering feathers until I liked what I saw.

They had to be put aside to dry as I used so much ink!

The love birds were inked with Squeezed Lemonade, Rusty Hinge, Twisted Citron and Peacock Feathers (with Pumice Stone for the feet) at the same time before stamping onto the mixed media paper. Normally I'd use my watercolour markers but my yellow is dry so used ink pads instead... not as accurate but it still worked. 

fyi... To refill Distress markers, pull out the brush nib, add a few drops of the same colour Reinker using the eye dropper then put the nib back in.

Their beaks were coloured afterwards with Barn Door and the eyes with black Sharpie. Edges were inked with Pumice Stone... inking edges always seems to finish off pieces and lift them from the surface.

The branch was inked with Walnut Stain and cut separately from the birds.
The words 'love birds' were stamped in black Archival ink.
All were handcut (fussy cut) including the little heart (in mulbery paper) before sticking into place.

Retail therapy links...
Distress Inks (msg to order any not here) 

Thanks for reading :) Hope they make you smile!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Scribble Sticks go to the Circus

My latest art journal page for a swap with friends for the theme of "circus".

Hand drawn and painted onto Liquitex acrylic paper using Dina Wakley's fabulous Scribble Sticks with a waterbrush. I also used Winsor & Newton Watercolour Paint Sticks (not much this time, mostly used Dina's) and Dylusions Paint Pens (the red and white) for a few details with a splash of white acrylic paint for the fabric.

I started with drawing red and white big top stripes using the ruby Dina Wakley art stick... but I got carried away and it was way too much for what I wanted, so sprayed it with water. This just turned it all into a red mess ... I used too much water! lol Things we do!

I then added blue and purple with the Dina Wakley art sticks and smooshed it all around with my fingers while it was still wet. The swirling purples gave me an idea so I dried off the middle circle, lifting off the excess.
You can just see the remains behind some areas of the purple.

With so much water used, I had to put it aside... no matter how much I waved air over it, it just wasn't drying!

The next day it looked ok :) Phew! 
I painted brown and red stripes inside the circle with black around the edge and also over the corners of the page.

The silk trapeze artist was drawn in pencil and painted using more DW sticks, as paint rather than using them direct on the page. I added layers and layers of red brush strokes for her hair before painting in the silk. Adding more red squiggly lines afterwards with Dylusions paint pen and even more curly lines in black.

It looked a bit plain... but the star dust Icestickles glitter glue soon fixed that and added that bit of glamour to her hair and leotard. Its amazing what a few spots of glitter will do :)

I like how its turned out :) Thanks so much for reading my blog post.

Happy Creative Day!

Friday, March 31, 2017


Calypso was my inspiration for my art journal page. She is a Sea Goddess well known for sinking ships, making big waves in stormy seas and putting curses on pirates. The theme "goddess" was for Tash's journal - part of the AAJS.

This first photo is a work in progress pic with my original sketch behind. I used my favourite paints Tambi Gansai and the Distress watercolour markers with a few other arty treasures.

Every sea has a Heart of the Ocean hidden somewhere... this gem is wrapped around seagrasses, watched over by big mud crabs. 
Sparkle added with Wink of Stella clear shimmer paint pen.

Details throughout the page were added using black and white waterbased Sharpie paint pens along with Stella in gold and white.

Stamps were used for some critters and seaweed. The crabs are from Under the Sea and school of tiny fish are from Ocean Backgrounds, both by Dyan Reavely, while the shells and seaweed are by Rachel Greig of Darkroom Door.

The fish, crabs and shells were all inked with markers then coloured with paints before bring cut out and stuck in the page.

This octopus was drawn and painted freehand, cut in a way that enabled him to climb over the shell and page edge. I wonder who's hiding inside the shell?

Looking up, the octopus realises he has a chance at being a kraken... but is too kindhearted to sink the ship!

The ship is made from card and tissue, so light it floats, despite the huge waves crashing into it.

With waves this wild and huge, the sailors are hiding below deck so we can't see them. Lucky really, because they'd be so tiny I'd need a magnifying glass to paint their little faces!

Calypso's wild mermaid coloured hair is made from yarns, cord and ribbon. Each strand is carefully curled and attached in place using Glossy Accents (glue).

Scales, Smooch and shimmery glitter glue (Diamond Icestickles) finish off Calypso's face.

The finished art journal page...

I'm so pleased with how this turned out, even if Calypso has an odd looking nose!

With the flap folded up, it appears Calypso is hiding, ready for anything!

Thanks so much for spending time looking at my artwork. I hope it made you smile :)
It was a joy to create. I loved every minute!

Darkroom Door and Dylusions cling rubber stamps, Wink of Stella, Sharpies and Tambi Gansai warercolour paints are available at my online shop,

Happy Creative Day!

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