Ain't No Ninny

Where Creativity and Everyday Life Collide


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.

Day 17 Lightning Bolt - Jake Bugg

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!



Art Every Day Month – Day 14

Some days what you see in your mind does not translate to the page.  Today is one of those days.  The NaNoJouMo song-title prompt for the day was “Suit and Tie” by Justin Timberlake.  I wanted a dapper man in suit and tie and the words “I be on my suit and tie” as well as another line from the lyrics “Let me show you a few things”.

Well, I did find a magazine photo of a man in a suit which was the correct size for the page but the black inks of the image were more charcoal gray than the glossy black I had envisioned.  I wanted to create a background that had Payne’s gray (almost a charcoal navy color) and a turquoise green to offset the black of the image.  I created the background using acrylic paints and a stencil. It looked fine on its own but I wasn’t sure at first how to write over the top of the stenciled parts.  I used Posca paint pens in black and green and simply wrote over the top of the stenciled parts . . . but, unfortunately, the writing didn’t show up very well.  And the image of the man didn’t show up well against the background so I used a green oil pastel and a black paint pen to outline the image, which did help a little.  I also did some doodling on the page to help integrate the background colors a bit.  Here’s what I ended up with.

Day 14 Suit and Tie - Justin Timberlake

I’m not wild about the finished journal page but every time I do something that doesn’t work, I learn something from it:  either what not to do in the future or what I can do to fix it.

Also, I realized that I really don’t like following the NaNoJouMo prompts much.  I’d rather come up with my own inspiration and create that.  So, although I may use the prompts now and again, I think I’ll just follow my own heART for the rest of the month and do what calls to me.

May your own muse call to you to do something creative today also!


Art Every Day Month – Day 13

Today I went back to the NaNoJouMo song-title prompts.  Today’s was “How Soon Is Now” by The Smiths and was featured in the 1998 film, The Wedding Singer.  The song title reminded me of a clock; also two lines of the chorus are used over and over and gave me the idea for both the character and the text in my art journal page.

Day 13 - How Soon is Now - The Smiths

I used an acrylic painted background that I had scanned and printed out for this page (so that it formed a smooth base for the collage).  I cut out several disparate elements from magazines and collaged them to create a human-like character.  I created a clock out of the round piece behind the head.  I  hand-lettered two lines from the song’s chorus and the title/group name on the page.  I finished by doodling the blue playing card and other areas on the page.

I love the bright colors and how quickly the journal page came together.  I’m now more than 40% through this challenge and I may have made it past that ‘block’ that inevitably comes part way through any daily challenge like this.

I hope you have met your creative goals today too.

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Art Every Day Month – Day 11

Yes, I’m a day late on this one.  Life happens and sleep (or lack thereof) happens too.
Once again I used the NaNoJouMo song title prompt for November 11 which was “Riptide” by Vance Joy.  This time I decide just to go with a visual for the song title, something like an album cover.

Day 11 - Riptide - Vance Joy

I created this digitally using a very primitive online drawing tool.  The result looks like someone floating in or being pulled down into deep water (a riptide).  I collaged a printout of the digital art into my 7×10 mixed media journal then printed and collaged the song title to the top left of the page.  I finished by handlettering the singer’s name to the bottom.  Easy peasy.

I hope you did something creative today too!

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Art Every Day Month – Day 10

Today I let my inner child out and I colored (with colored pencils, not crayons).  I used the NaNoJouMo song-title prompt for today which was “Daydreaming” by Paramore.  I decided to take a cue from the first stanza of the song and build homes on a street in a (day)dream.  I sat on the sofa and created this (much like I did as a child) while watching a movie on television.

Day 10 Daydreaming - Paramore

The graphite smudged a bit and my scanner cut the 9×12 page down to 8.5×11 but the gist of my intentions are there.  It’s whimsical, it meets the challenge, and I got great satisfaction from doing something simple for myself.

I hope you satisfied your own creative Muse today.


Art Every Day Month – Day 9

Once again, I used the NaNoJouMo song-title prompt for the day.  This time it was “Palisades Park” by Counting Crows.  Boy, is it a far cry from the original song with that name by Neil Diamond!  I listened and listened to the song and then read the lyrics.  I realized the important parts of the song to me (for an art journal page) were the park itself (an amusement park in New Jersey across the Hudson River from New York City that closed in 1971) and the narrator in the song asking where his friend Andy went.

Immediately, I recalled a gelli-plate monoprint that I had created a few months ago, one of my first as a matter of fact.  I created it using acrylics in primary colors on deli paper, a type of waxed paper that disappears when you collage it onto a page or canvas.  I had used 2 or 3 different mandala-type stencils whose shapes are reminiscent of ferris wheels and other carnival rides.  I grabbed that and glued it into my 7×10 mixed media journal using matte gel medium.  Then I printed out a silhouette of an ambiguous figure because the narrator refers to Andy as ‘he’ sometimes and ‘she’ sometimes as if he/she were possibly transexual.  I collaged the silhouette and two different lines from the song onto the ‘amusement park’ background. Finally, I highlighted areas on the page with a black Stabilo All pencil (which I smudged for a grunge look) or a Sharpie white paint pen.

Day 9 Palisades Park - Counting Crows

I am very pleased with how this turned out.  It was an easy journal page to create since I had previously created the background monoprint.   But I think it accomplishes what I had hoped for.

Now off to write a poem for the day!  I hope you’ve had time to create today too.


Art Every Day Month – Day 8

Today I used the NaNoJouMo song-title prompt “Another is Waiting” by the Avett Brothers.  I didn’t really like the song until I read the lyrics and an article where the song writer talks about what the lyrics meant.  It is about how girls (and women) are unduly influenced by popular culture to become too thin.  I feel very strongly about that.  I have a very average body size, not too thin and not too heavy, but I always feel fat.  I could stand to lose 10 pounds and I am not worried about that.  But young girls are overly inspired by the air-brushed, anorexic-looking models they see in magazines.

I used the prompt to do a quick collage using some of the lyrics from the song and an image (unsourced) that I found on Google images which seemed to epitomize the concept.  The edges of the page were created using a skeleton stencil and black gesso.  I used a red Sharpie paint pen for highlights and doodles.

Day 8 Another is Waiting - Avett Brothers

This was a quick art journal page, which goes to show that you can be creative in 30 minutes or less if that is all the time you have.  I hope you are inspired to create today too!

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Art Every Day Month – Day 7

Today there were two prompts that caught my eye.  On, the weekly prompt was “Thinking of You”.  And for NaNoJouMo, the daily song title prompt was “Through the Dark” by Alexi Murdoch.  Both of these made me think of my daughter who is going through a difficult time right now.  I wanted to combine the prompts and then send a scan of the page to her to show that she is loved.

I started with a page in my 7×10 mixed media art journal that already had some purple, ivory and teal paint on it from cleaning off brushes from a prior project. It may be a coincidence, one I wasn’t thinking of when I chose that page, but my daughter’s favorite colors are purple and teal.  It was meant to be!   I then painted a woman, half on — half off the page over the purple paint giving her black hair (like my daughter’s) and with tears falling from the visible eye.

Week 45 Thinking of You

On the rest, I stamped & doodled & scribbled over the existing paint to give the page some dimension. I added hearts (since I am sending this to her from my heart).  Then I collaged two lines onto the center heart from the song “Through the Dark”.  I also used a stamp at the bottom right of the page that shows that there is a way through the darkness as long as there is love.  And I have tons of love for her.

Today I am thinking of my daughter.  And I created something to show her my love.

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Art Every Day Challenge – Day 6

It’s been one of those days — very busy with little time for creativity.  So I decided not to follow today’s #NaNoJouMo prompt (which was “Don’t Carry It All” by the Decemberists).  Instead, I picked up my Art Doodle Love journal and, using only four gel pens (black, white, pink, purple), I doodled mandalas on one of the pages.

Day 6 no prompt (mandala doodles)

Sometimes doodling is exactly what is called for and it keeps the creative juices flowing.   Art for the day….done!

I hope you found some time in your day to do something creative, too.


Art Every Day – Day 5 (Second Hand News)

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again here.  I really have trouble drawing and painting faces.  The only remedy for that is practice, practice, and more practice.  I expect to try several this month.

I used Dawn Sokol’s Day 5 NaNoJouMo prompt which was “Second Hand News” by Fleetwood Mac.  I decided to use newsprint in the background over which I wanted use translucent paint that would let the pieces of newsprint show through.  I chose two paints (Quinacridone Nickel Azo Gold and Green-Gold) because they would give the journal page a warm glow and would look a little rustic.  I drew the face with a graphite pencil and then painted it with various shades of craft paint.   I stamped the words on the neck with Sepia archival ink and went over them with a Sepia pitt pen.  I hand-lettered the group’s name in black gel pen and highlighted it with white gel pen.

Day 5 Secondhand News - Fleetwood Mac

I wasn’t looking for photo-realism in the face, which is good since it doesn’t look realistic.  I was looking to achieve a face that was serious and thoughtful.  I hope I achieved a little of that.  I’ll keep practicing and practicing and, with luck, I’ll improve.  That’s the name of the learning game!

I hope you did something creative too!