Saturday, December 29, 2012

Hold Onto Your Inspirations

As 2012 comes to a close, I have one last art prompt for you: hold onto your inspirations. It has been a very inspiring year for me blogging with you and I have made many connections through my art. Earlier this year  I started an inspiration wall full of favorite quotes, pieces of art (mostly art cards and small prints) and even some old favorite sketches of mine. Whatever inspires you- hold onto it. Put it someplace where you can see everyday.

I hope you've found some inspiration this year following along with some of my art prompts. To recap, here is my list of weekly art prompts. I'd love to see your version of these art prompts, so please email me and share some of your inspiration.
I look forward to the year 2013, and sharing my monthly art themes with you.
Ang’s 52 art prompts for 2012
 1. Take 5 was just the kick in the ass I needed: why art prompts are my new resolution: grab the first 5 things you see at your art table and create a piece of art from it.
2. Viewfinders: use a viewfinder to isolate a pattern or texture to paint.
3. An artswap paint-in: swap studio time with a fellow artist and draw inspiration from their art supplies and materials.
4. When life throws a girl some curves: why I love painting curvy women: look at pictures on the Internet for inspiration. I love the blog “Curvy is the New Black”.
5. One more thing: A lesson in knowing when to quit: take an “unfinished” piece of art (or piece you are unhappy with) and try doing just one more thing to it.
6. A Color Junkie Gets Clean: work using only black and white.
7. One medium, 7 techniques: pick an art medium and see how many different ways you can use it.
8. Angela goes 3-D!: work the opposite of what you normally would. For example, if you are a 2-D artist, try a 3-D piece.
9. Painting with yarn and roving: an art prompt: try painting with a medium you don’t usually use.
10. A red poem doodle: pick a color and some inspiring words to include into your next art piece.
11. Carve a little stamp: carve a stamp and make some artist trading cards from the printed images.
12. Patchwork prompt: sew strips of fabric together and then create an art piece from them
13. Teeny Tiny Collage: use tiny scraps of paper and maps to create a small collage.
14. Spend 5 minutes at your worktable: don’t work, just sit. Use this as a prompt just to get to your art table. Relax and let the inspiration wash over you.
15. Silhouettes of the ones you love: create an art piece from a silhouette or profile of yourself or some one else.
16. Chinese ink, a garage sale and a you-tube video: use a never before used art supply.
17. Wabi-Sabi: try a new art technique.
18. Join an art group: join an art group either online (Deviant or in your community.
19. Art Journaling: decorate the front of a journal and use it for art journaling.
20. One White Crow: create a piece of art that you can send to someone as a surprise.
21. Take your inspiration where you can get it: use a favourite novel to inspire your next art piece.
22. Borrow someone else’s process for the day: research another artists’ process and try it out for yourself.
23. Monsters by Mason: create doodles and then use them to inspire a piece of artwork.
24. What’s in your basement? : look in old junk shops, your basement or junk drawers for stuff that can be used as inclusions in your art.
25. 16 blocks done 8 ways: experiment on small blocks of wood, known as “brownies”.
26. White marbled brownies: start with a dark background and build up white layers to create an image.
27. Poppies: my studio icon: create art using an icon that represents something about your life.
28. Polar Passion: use newspaper words that create a response in you and create an art piece using those words.
29. Maintenance: draw or paint the view from your window.
30. Time Management: see what you can get accomplished in a set amount of time, be it 5 minutes or 5 hours. You decide, then set your timer.
31. Barn Cat: create an art piece using two complimentary colors.
32. Urban Textures: do some rubbings around the house and incorporate them into an art piece.
33.Re-claimed Lumber: let a hot “designer” element inspire an art piece.
34. Drawing With your non-dominant hand: to add looseness to your work.
35. Create a postcard #1: and send it to someone as mail art.
36. Create a postcard #2: use pictures and quotes from antique books to create a mailable piece of art.
37. Altered Puzzles: use and old jigsaw puzzle as your next canvas.
38. Subtractive Method of Painting: try a new painting technique.
39. Haida Tux: use an art style from a different culture.
40. My Life as a Three Ring Circus: create embellishments or inclusions based on a theme that you can use in later art pieces.
41. A-Ha Moments: clean your art studio and use any art inclusions are supplies you forgot you had.
42. Visit Local fine art and craft shows: try gift giving on a local level by supporting local artisans during holiday seasons.
43. Circus Freaks: break some art rules by using an art medium in a novel way.
44. Random Acts of Christmas Kindness: count down the 25 days of Christmas by giving away small pieces of your artwork.
45. The student Life: help support a young artist by mentoring them.
46. Sending Some Canadian Snow your way: make a set of decorative ornaments and mail them to someone special.
47. Hand make your Christmas cards this year: and invite friends over to join you.
48. Throw a wacky bookmark party: invite friends to make wacky bookmarks at a party and then trade.
49. Cute-as-a-button button books: make something fun out of buttons.
50. Inspiration Boards: create inspiration boards from favourite images and quotes.
51. Jury into local art shows: if you haven’t already done this, get brave and jury into an art show or enter an art competition.
52. Altered books: cut, collage or paint on the pages of an old hard cover book to create a new book.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Cute As A Button-Button Books

For me, there has always been something whimsical about buttons. When my boys were younger and my house was over run with stuffies, I was constantly replacing their eyes with buttons. Sometimes I did this because a dog had chewed the eyes off, but other times because I preferred the home made look of button eyes. When I knit my "Java Monster" coffee cup cozies, I search for the perfect pairing of button eyes. I have a huge collection of buttons that I use for felted bags and "stupid sock creatures". Today I have been making adorable little button books out of some of my favorite collected buttons.

All you need are two buttons and a sheet of paper. Start by tracing around the button 8 times in a row. Cut the paper circles out, leaving them attached like you would for paper doll chains.
Illustrate your paper chain of circles. Glue buttons on the covers.
My completed button books make me smile!
This week, try making something fun with buttons!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Throw a Wacky Bookmark Party

I belong to an amazing book club. Sure, the books we read are usually pretty great. But it's really the company I'm talking about here. I can't wait to sit down with this group of women every month and talk about life, kids, philosophy and of course... books. Last month one of my book club friends suggested we throw a wacky book mark exchange party! Another friend offered to host and voila... a party was in motion. Here's one of 4 wacky book marks I made for the occasion.

The front.
The back.
Here are some book marks I created by cutting an old canvas painting into strips.
What a beautiful selection of hand made book marks. It was so hard to choose. I ended up taking home the needle felted bookmark with fun circles on it!
Oreo getting in on the action.
Mmmmmmm. It was ALL good!
If you'd like to make a bookmark for your art prompt this week, here's some easy steps to create one like mine, with felted pom poms.
First, draw your picture onto a blank bookmark. Next, use iron-on fusible web from the sewing store to attach your book mark to a fabric backing. Trim out the bookmark and punch a hole in the top. You can take your bookmark to an office supply store to have it laminated like I did. This will make your book mark durable.
Now, for the pom poms! Use a small amount of roving. Wrap the roving into a loose ball.

Dip the loose ball of roving into a pan of hot soapy water. Start rolling the ball in your soapy hands. The roving will compact into a tight, hard felted ball after a few minutes.

Thread yarn through the dry ball and add to your bookmark.
Now, make more and throw a party!


Monday, December 10, 2012

Sending Some Canadian Snow Your Way

What a great day I had today, hanging out in my pyjamas next to a roaring fire with a dear friend, crafting little snowmen.

These little guys are being given to my favorite grocery store cashier.

I LOVE snowmen! Building snowmen is the first thing my kids and I do when it snows. Sewing these little snowmen got me reminiscing about the very cold and snow laden Cariboo winters I grew up in and all the snowmen I built with my brother. My brother and his wife now live in South Carolina. I wonder if he misses snowmen. Just in case he does, I'm sending him a box of Canadian snow (snowman ornaments that is). I made these little snowmen with my youngest son, Mason.

This week, create a set of ornaments that remind you of someone and send them off. You just might make someone's day! Here's hoping my brother and wife could use a little Canadian snow this time of year.