Ain't No Ninny

Where Creativity and Everyday Life Collide


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Art Every Day Month – Day 23

Whew, finally!  I finished up with the Jenniebelli challenge (7 art journal pages in 7 days) one day early.  It turns out there was almost nothing left to do after I selected my sixth and final technique, which was Doodling with Pens/Markers.  So doodle I did and shading I did and fix-up I did and journal I did (with those self-same pens and markers.)

And here are my finished seven art journal pages.  Over-done, under-done, but done!

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If I had gone any further on this one it would have definitely been overdone.  But I like it as it is.  I like the colors, the shapes, the doodles, and the decorative napkins framing the figure.

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This one makes me smile. 🙂   I did a lot of circle doodles in the ‘tunnels’ around the open stenciled areas and I doodled the words “Dinner and a movie with you tonight” in the open white areas of the stencil.  I also journaled a bit on the dog next to the menu.  Mission accomplished.

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This one is way over-done in my opinion.  I just didn’t know what to do with it.  I stamped the quote in step 2, I think, and now it seems dwarfed by everything around it. The message gets lost because the eye really doesn’t have a place to land.  I did have fun doodling and playing with all of those circles, though.

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Well, this might just be my favorite, after all is said and done.  I did very little doodling on it since it was so busy to begin with. I shaded everything and then I merely journaled in very tiny hand-lettering along the tops of the low building.  Everything is crooked but I love the art-deco colors and shapes and feel to this.

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This one had been my favorite during Steps 3 and 4 (collage and paint) but  it lost some of its allure for me when I added the ephemera to it.  I do like the flower doodles on the background, the white journaling in her hair, and the words “Life is a Journey” but I do not care for the Destination ephemera at the top or the hand-written words at the bottom.  I am very proud of this one though since drawing (and especially painting) faces has been my nemesis for years.

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What can I say about this?  I like it best during Steps 1 and 2 (focal image and stencils).  Everything I added after that made it look silly or too busy or something.  This is now my least favorite.  There was no room left on this after doodling to do any journaling but that’s okay since I wouldn’t know what the message for this page would be.  The word right below her face reads “INNOCENT” but is sloppy and unreadable.  I give this one to the Universe to reflect back the challenges faced in this challenge.

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At one point in this page, I thought I had ruined it.  But I rather like it now.  The big orange/mauve snowflakes and that shabby ‘fence’ and the words ‘Deer Santa,” now make me smile.

Whoa, was this challenge challenging!  It opened my eyes a little.  I can (DID) successfully do things in an order I would not normally do.  It was difficult for me not knowing where the page would have to go in order to fulfill the current required product/technique.  I had to just let go and let the page speak for itself.  Art is all about intuition and letting go, I think, so in that I was successful.

Would I do this again?  I don’t know, but probably not any time soon.  I got rather sick of those pages after 6 days so I lopped a whole day off the challenge.  But it’s nice to know that it’s okay to break larger projects down into baby steps.  I can do that. 🙂

I hope you found some creativity in your day too.  Things will get crazy from here on out so I (and you?) will keep my art down to easy things from here on out during this month.  Thanks for stopping by!

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Art Every Day Month – Day 22

Okay, it’s Day 5 of Jenniebellie’s  (7 art journal pages in 7 days)  challenge.  I’m officially getting tired of working on the same seven pages every day.  But the end is in sight.

Today I selected one of the two remaining techniques/methods from my box:

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Ephemera, it is!  That’s usually a fun technique and is very intuitive.  My partner just gave me some ephemera from his trip to Phoenix this week (light rail passes, movie tickets, etc.) and I have plastic shoe boxes full of other small items so off I went to affix ephemera to my pages.  Here’s what I ended up with.

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I added a coupon, a small map of Russia and some ‘holey’ ephemera across the top.

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I added part of a menu from a retirement complex, a movie theater stub, and some ribbon across the top of both.

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I added words from Tim Holtz cardstock; printed words; and the tops of two note pads from the dollar store.

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I added cacti from Phoenix light rail ticket stubs; a piece of scrapbook paper with circles on it; the Holiday Inn logo from their notepaper; a punched watercolor circle for the sun/moon; and printed text.

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I added the words ‘Stay Organized’ from some Holiday Inn hotel stationery; a small heart cut out from a gelli print scrap, a piece from some hand painted & stamped paper (near her left hand).

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On this one I added square-punched scrap from spiral-bound mixed media paper and circles punched from gelli printed tissue paper.

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All I added here was a label from my Sakura souffle pens and small scrapbook journaling square.

Well, that was fun.  Tomorrow I will be using a pen to shade and doodle on the pages (the last technique) and Monday I will do whatever I need to finish up them up.  That might include more paint or collage or journaling or shading or fixing up boo-boos.  Can’t wait.

I hope you find something creative to do today too!


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Art Every Day Month – Day 21

Wow!  This month is flying by!  It will be New Years before we know it.  Yikes!!

Today I got back to the Jennibellie challenge (7 art journal pages in 7 days, each day a different technique or product).  I am on day 4 and this is the technique I blindly drew from the box on my desk:

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Finally!  I’m glad I got paint/ink sprays this time because the remaining two techniques (ephemera and pens/doodling) don’t make sense before the pages are painted.  That’s the good news.  That bad news is that at least one page really didn’t lend it self to either painting or ink sprays but I did my best.  Here are my seven pages after I applied paint or ink:

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Oops!  I guess I forgot to crop this one.  I water-colored this using Ranger Distress stains instead of watercolor paint.  I really loved this after Day 2 when it was all black and white but now I’m not so sure.   We’ll see where this ends up after Day 7.

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This page really didn’t call for paint and I think I screwed it up trying to add gesso and some blue paint around the face/braids.  I may have to fix this in the final step.  I did change her lip color to be consistent with the colors on the page and painted the whites of her eyes to stand out more.  I liked this page the best after Day 2 and now I like it the least.

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I’m really liking this one right now.  I water-colored the dog and some of the stencil pieces with autumn-toned Ranger Distress stains.  I have no idea where I will go from here on this but I love it as it is.

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I used water color paint on this for the towel, her hair and a yellow wash around the body.  I wanted the body to remain untouched because I might doodle on it or add words later.  I love the soothing but bright colors on this page.

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On this page I started with the sky and decided to use a complementary color to the art-deco blue washi tape that was on the page.  Watered down orange/yellow acrylics seemed to make it stand out and is consistent with a fiery sunset skyline.  I do wish, however, that I had not highlighted the swirls in orange. The buildings I did using cheap watercolors in pastel colors, much like what you would see on the art-deco buildings in Miami along South Beach.  I still have to meld that bright sky and those pastel buildings.

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I love how this turned out with her bright hair and pale eyes & skin.  I used soft body acrylics and gesso for her face/hair/lips/eyes.  I gessoed the rest of the page, over the collage/stamps, then sprayed Prima Color Bloom spray in Summer Sky over that.  It was a coincidence that it matched her eyes.

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I couldn’t figure out what to paint on this page so I used a guache watercolor the same color as the ball to outline the feathers, the stamped words and all of the circles.  I also touched up the areas on the girl’s body that had torn when I glued them with a glue stick and tried to make the tears less noticeable.  I painted the sky blue with an acrylic wash and then went over it with gesso to tone it down some.  I think I will end up liking this page after I finish it up on Day 7.  Right now I’m a little ho-hum about it.

I spent a lot more time on these pages today than for any other step and I’m rather ambivalent about them right now.  Most are in that in-between ugly stage.  I’m hoping the next three days will fix them up and I’ll like them all in the end.

I am glad I created and I hope you got to be creative today too!


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Art Every Day Month – Day 20

Today I am on the third day of Jennibellie’s challenge (7 art journal pages in 7 days).  I blindly chose today’s technique from my box of techniques/products:

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I was hoping to select  ‘paint’ since that is what I would normally be doing next . . . but collage it is!  I collaged paper or paper tape (washi tape) onto each of the seven art journal pages that I started two days ago.

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Boy, the pages are changing quickly from where they first started!  I still have 3 techniques to go (paint, ephemera, and pens/doodling) plus whatever is needed to bring the pages to fruition.  It is difficult to see where they may end up but I love mysteries!

I’ll see you tomorrow with more on these same journal pages.  Until then, I hope you find time in your day to create too!


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Art Every Day Month – Day 19

Today is Day 2 of Jennibellie’s challenge (7 art journal pages in 7 days).  If you are interested in this challenge go here to see more:
http://jennibelliestudio.blogspot.com/2014/11/ready-set-go.html .

Yesterday, as directed by my selection of techniques, I created focal images on seven art journal pages.  Today I blindly picked this technique:

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Okay!  I stamped and/or stenciled each page from yesterday.  I chose to use different stamps or stencils on each page and I restricted myself (because it was easiest) to red or black archival ink pads for both…no paint this time.  Some of the stamp/stencil images will likely be covered by collage elements or paint in future iterations.  Here are my seven pages in all their stamp or stenciled glory:

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This technique took me a good half hour to finish for all seven pages.  Quick and easy.  I may have over-stamped or stenciled some of the pages because I still have four techniques to go before the pages are complete…but that’s how she blows.  I can’t wait to see what tomorrow has in store for these pages.

I hope you make time in your day for something creative also!


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Art Every Day Month – Day 18

I decided that for the next seven days I wanted to do an art journal challenge that was started by the artist Jenniebellie on her blog http://jennibelliestudio.blogspot.com/2014/11/ready-set-go.html . She has accompanying videos to show you how she completed the challenge each day for herself.  It is a 7-day challenge where you work on any number of art journal pages you choose each day for 7 days (I chose 7 pages each day). You decide in advance of starting the pages which six products/techniques you want to use on your pages.  I selected the following, which I often use:

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You fold the six pieces of paper up, put them in a bag or a box and pull one out each day.  You work on that technique/product for that day on all of your journal pages.  The next day, you pull a different paper out and work on that technique only for all of your pages.  You continue until all six techniques have been completed on all of your pages.  The seventh day is used to do whatever you have to do to complete your journal pages.

I put all six of my folded papers into a small box on my desk top and shook it to rearrange them.  This is the technique that I pulled out of the box to use today.

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Aaargh!  I would normally do the focal image last (or next to last) after the background has been completed and I have an idea for the overall page.  The focal image usually completes a page, creates a place for the eye to rest, and conveys the message you intended for the page. This is a real challenge for me since I have no idea what I want for these seven pages! A focal image can be drawn or painted or collaged or stenciled or stamped . . . whatever works . . .  so I felt free to use different techniques to create my focal image.

Here are the seven pages I did today with a focal image on each. They are all on white 7″x10″ 90 lb. mixed media paper.  Since the pages are white, it will be hard to see where one page ends and another begins.  But, believe me, there are photos of seven pages of the same dimensions.

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On two of them I used collaged images, four were drawn free-hand with a Micron 05 pen, and one (the seated lady) was outlined using a Donna Downey stencil and embellished with the Micron pen.

Today’s technique took over an hour to complete but the others should take less than that since they will be embellishing the focal images and created a background for them. I am looking forward to the next six days and finding out where this challenge takes my journal pages.

I hope you found some time today to be creative also!


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Art Every Day Month – Day 17

I looked at the NaNoJouMo song-title prompt today (“Lightning Bolt” by Jake Bugg) and decided I could do a small art journal page in less than 30 minutes.  And I did.

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I used spray inks and Distress stains to create this.  The most difficult part was cutting the card stock masks to keep the spray inks where I wanted them.  I finished up by writing and drawing the stick figure and the bare tree with a black Fude pen.  The words along the slope are from a line in the song: “In the path of a lightning bolt”.

This took 20 minutes which is all I wanted to spend on art this morning since I have other, more pressing creative and non-creative things to do today.  I hope you can spend at least 20 minutes being creative today too!