Ain't No Ninny

Where Creativity and Everyday Life Collide


Documented Life Project (DLP) Week 3: Color Wheel

The prompts for DLP come out each Saturday around noon.  I had planned to put off doing my page/spread until later in the week but it called to me yesterday.  These were the themes/prompts for the Documented Life Project week three:

January Theme
The Blank Page and How to Face It!
January 17
Art Challenge:  The Color Wheel
Journal Prompt:  “I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way . . . “    – Georgia O’Keeffe

While searching for something else yesterday I came across an individual piece of mixed media paper, slightly larger than the size of the large Dylusions journal in which I am creating my DLP spreads.  It had papers and paint on it where I had started something a year ago but had not continued.  I decided that the colors were perfect for a color wheel (burgundy, magenta, teal, yellowish green, yellow with coordinating papers).  I started by spreading white gesso around the papers with a palette knife to integrate them with the background.  I scribbled into the wettish gesso with a pencil, leaving several marks that I hoped would peek up through the layers. Then I smeared more fluid acrylics in the same colors with my fingers and through two StencilGirl stencils (‘Angel Circle’ by Kate Thomspon and ‘Spider Flower by Terri Stegmiller). I adhered the Georgia O’Keeffe quote printed onto deli paper onto the top left side and finished by adding sketchy embellishments with a black Fude pen, a black Stabilo Marks All pencil and various Posca paint pens.


In the photos below you can see the details of the painting, showing the pencil marks and different layers peeking up through from the original paper.

P1020873 P1020872 P1020874

For the second week in a row I worked fairly intuitively (no plan at the outset for where the page would go) and for the second week in a row I created a grunge-style painting.  I didn’t intend to do that but I am really liking the messy, colorful results of this intuitive experimenting I am doing.  I wonder where next week will take me?  We’ll see.

I had fun creating this and will continue on with more art journaling later today.  I hope your holiday is full of creativity also.  Happy Martin Luther King Day!



StencilGirl StencilClub Stencil Play

I love stencils.  I sometimes use them to create central figures in my art journal and mixed media paintings but most often I use them for background texture or added elements.  I have found many stencils I like from various manufacturers but my favorite this year are by StencilGirl Products (  The stencils are created by artists for artists and there are hundreds of stencils to choose from.  If you join their monthly StencilClub, you will receive exclusive stencils each month that will never be released to the general public, as well as video tutorials on how the stencils could be used.  I belong to their StencilClub.

Today I had no destination in mind except that I wanted to use the September StencilClub stencils.  There are three stencils in that package, all designed by famed mixed media artist Andrew Borloz.  The package contains a 9″x12″ stencil, a 6″x6″, and a 4″x4″ with coordinating designs.  You can see a photo of the stencils here:

I decided to start with a page out of my Canson 7″x10″ mixed media journal that I had used to clean off a StencilGirl stencil by Jessica Sporn (Namaste) from a different project.  It is the lacy green paint that shows in the background.  I also cleaned off my paintbrush from the same project on that page (swipes of white and lavendar acrylics).  Unfortunately I did not take a photo of the page at the start but you can see the background in the finished product, below.

Art Journal Dance with the Butterflies

Starting at the left hand side of the page, I used purple Liquitex Basics acrylic paint and Andrew Borloz’s 9×12 stencil to create the large purple acrylic scallops as well as the lacy looking dots and scallops just to the right of it.  I then used the outside of his 6×6 stencil to create the purple scallops at the top and bottom of the page.  I still wasn’t sure where I was going at that point but the scallops and circles made me think of lacy butterflies.  So I took a large chipboard butterfly mask I’ve had for ages (don’t remember the brand) and created two overlapping butterflies on the page using purple acrylic paint and outlining with purple gel pens.  I then added the three small shapes from Andrew’s 4×4 stencil under the butterflies in green acrylic to bring more green into the page.

Seeing the page at that point made me think of the phrase “Dancing with Butterflies”.  So I found a magazine photo of a dancer that would fit on the page and I cut it out and glued it to the page with gel medium.  The colors of the figure were all wrong so I painted over the entire cut-out with acrylics in Paynes Gray and two different flesh tones.  Then I doodled all over the page with a white Signo Broad UM-153 pen.  I also added the journaled words “Dance with the butterflies” in white over the large purple scallops on the left side of the page.

Done!  I always love the color combination of purple and green and I think the scalloped stencils by Andrew Borloz really frame the page.  I can’t wait to use his stencils for other projects too!

I hope you do something creative today also!



I did not create any art this weekend.  It was a difficult weekend for a few different reasons and when my mind or activities are all over the map, I can’t seem to focus on anything else.  However, I was determined to follow through with Connie Hozvicka’s advice in her free 10-day Art Journal Wisdom workshop at, which is to create art journal ‘morning pages’ — art every day.  Since it is Monday, it seemed a good idea to start the week off right by creating something that could be done within about 30 minutes.

I watched the #artjournalwisdom video for day 5 of the workshop.  It said to limit yourself to just a few elements in order to create quickly and simply.  The three elements that they recommended for the day were:  a) purple paint + some white paint for contrast; b) easy flowing breath (incorporate something that reminds you of that); and c) a little Mother Nature (in the form of something natural from outside).

Art Journal Wisdom 5

I created a 2-page spread in a little over 30 minutes by using Connie’s suggested three elements plus a few other items.  I used cheap purple acrylic paint mixed with white gesso for the background.  At that point, thinking of ‘easy flowing breath’ reminded me of yoga so I chose two StencilGirl stencils to make the page come together quickly:  L233 “Namaste” by Jessica Sporn and an exclusive StencilClub stencil from October 2013 also by Jessica Sporn.  I also gathered five leaves from the rose bushes outside my studio/office window to use somewhere in the spread.

I sprayed Dylusions spray in Calypso through the mandala stencil on the right page, then pounced white acrylic paint through the same stencil once the Dylusions spray dried.  The Dylusions spray activated with the wet paint giving a ‘softer’ look to the design.  I sprayed the same Dylusions spray directly onto the background on the left page.  When it dried I pounced Dina Wakely paint in Night through the yogi stencil on the left page to create the sitting figure and through the hand figures on the right page .  I then outlined the dark figure and the hands with white acrylic to stand out against the background.  Next I stenciled the words on the Namaste stencil on the left page with white acrylic paint and did the same with the word “Namaste” on the right page with the dark paint.  I then adhered the rose leaves in a lotus pattern under the sitting figure on the left.  Finally, I outlined everything with either a black Fude pen or white Uni-broad pen, including hand-lettering the word “Breathe” on the top of the right page, and doodled around the border of the left page.

The step that took the longest was outlining everything so that there was enough contrast in the elements on the pages.  Everything else was completed in about 20 minutes.  Since I didn’t get started on the page until right before noon, my ‘morning pages’ spilled into the afternoon…but I’m okay with that.

What creative thing have you done today?