Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Catherine Parkinson

Hi guys it's Tell All Tuesday...actually on Tuesday woohoo!!
This week we have an awesome textile artist & her work is rather mesmerizing, so sit back & enjoy the inspiration =)

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
My name is Catherine Parkinson. I live on just over an acre of land next to a dairy farm on the edge of Te Awamutu, a beautiful area of New Zealand. I live there with my husband and 3 of my 5 children. I am a textile artist and photographer. I paint and use other surface design techniques on fabric and then I heavily quilt onto the surface. I am inspired by patterning and the natural world around me.

What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
Time and health. Having a large family makes my time very limited. I have to structure my time very wisely to be able to get time in my studio. I try to work while the children are at school and in small chunks of time when the children are home. I have had a few health problems over the past few years too. The reason I started quilting was to help me heal from an illness. One of my children has quite a few health issues so I spend quite a bit of time at the doctors with him. I work when I can and I try to plan my time well so each moment is spent the best way it can be.

What do you love most / least enjoyable about your art?
I love the whole design and making process, from the drawing and painting, right through to the quilting. Seeing my art come to life from a thought in my mind is wonderful. I don’t like the finishing off part as my mind is already working on my next piece of work. I also love being able to see the world through the lens of my camera and capturing light effectively and portraying an idea with a camera. I find editing can be a bit time consuming but the effect is worth it.

What do you most wish your art to achieve?
Bring light into other people lives. There is so much negativity in our lives I want to make the world a more positive place. I would also love to have my art financially support our family.

Do you ever lose your mojo, and if so, how do you get it back?
Yup!! To quote finding Nemo ‘just keep swimming’. Basically I just get back into the studio and keep going. I also am learning to accept where I am and what is going on in my life. I get out equipment I love and I play or I pick up an old unfinished project and force myself to finish it and pretty soon my ‘Mojo’ returns.

Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
You can follow me at my blog or you can like me on facebook

Thank you so much for sharing Catherine, it was fun to have a textile artist on here I loved seeing your work. The part of your interview that most resonated with me was sooooooo 'I don’t like the finishing off part as my mind is already working on my next piece of work', I was like 'is she using my mouth to speak here?' lol I am SO in that process right now with couple projects....still once they are done YIPPIE I get the freedom of a new project...until that ends up the same way, but we don't see that, not just yet anyway - I see us with our new projects like new mums in a way, and I guess we are actually birthing stuff here, looking at all the lovely good stuff and ignoring the pain till it comes - and usually it too is worth it in the end ;)

Do you want to be a featured TAT artist??
To be featured email me or find all the details here =)

Much love

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Tell All Wednesday ~ Featured Artist: Siobhan Beer

Hello beautifuls,
Okay so I posted a quick post yesterday explaining this week TAT would be TAW due to issues with my email, but hurrah the internet didn't end! (tee hee just a lil inside joke...for me, as I doubt anyone even read the filler post yesterday lol) so here it is the first TAW, although I don't think it technically is if you count the times I've been late...but it's the first officially named TAW so there we are, enjoy =)

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
Well I’m Siobhan, I’m 24 and live in South West England between my two homes, one with my parents and the other with my boyfriend (life can be so topsy turvy!) Together we own a rather large collection of animals which give me so much inspiration and joy. I’m a complete dreamer, an avid creator who uses anything from twigs and leaves to paint and canvas for my art work, I guess I can be described as a mixed media artist most of the time! I’m also a self-confessed animal/nature geek who adores the natural world more than most people can understand. I’ve been creating for as long as I can remember and have always been inspired by the world around me. It’s rare for me to create anything without an animal or something natural in it… even if it’s a twiggy tree in the background. I used to primarily use graphite to work with but about ten years ago I saw the wonders of other media and couldn’t control myself. Since then I’ve worked with anything I can get my paws on. At the moment I seem to be going through a watercolour stage. It’s very difficult for me to go a day without doing something creative, I bake, write, draw, paint, sculpt, journal, scrapbook… I don’t like to be confined to one creative hobby which tends to leave me fighting with time as there are never enough hours in the day. I can normally be found working on my bed with Flynn my gerbil scampering around and trying to add his own unique talent to the world.

What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
My lack of confidence. The biggest challenge I face is letting people see anything I create. The idea of people seeing my work is terrifying for me especially when I’m in the same room to see their expression as they take in my creation. The first time I let my boyfriend see my sketchbook was awful! I was sat there trying to hide the shaking hands by fidgeting nervously and watching in horror as he looked through my ideas and feelings. It’s not that I’ve had bad experiences from people seeing my work, actually it’s usually the opposite but I put so much emotion in to my work it’s quite unnerving for other people to see, I worry that they’ll see something in me that they hadn’t seen before but over the past year through sharing my work I’ve come to the conclusion that what others see isn’t always what I saw when I created it. And if they do see something in me they hadn’t seen before maybe it’s not always going to be a bad thing. I’ve only just started to overcome this challenge and the only way I’ve managed this is by actually showing people my work and not locking all my sketchbooks away in a box somewhere. It’s been really difficult and I’ve had many moments where I just want to hide from the world but it’s done so much good and my confidence has grown so much in a very short time.

Do you ever lose your mojo, and if so, how do you get it back?
All the time. I get in to a state where I just sit staring at a blank piece of paper for hours, biting my lip, pulling funny faces and eating too much chocolate to ease the pain. It’s a horrible state for any creative person to be in and it really does get painful because you desperately want to create but you just can’t for some strange reason. I used to get it a lot more than I do now, I don’t know whether that’s because I’m in a more creative state or whether I’ve learnt to pull myself through it. The best cure for me is to stop forcing it. The more I sit and stare at the paper the more frustrated I feel which just makes things worse. Giving creating a break is so helpful, it not only reboots your creative mind but it also lets you focus on other things. I started going for walks, reading, writing among other things. The break usually gives me a fresh start and I’m able to get working again, usually with a strong creative force behind me and I can’t actually stop!

What advice would you offer to any perspective new artist?
Never expect to be perfect when you first try something out. It’s something we’re all guilty of these days. We try something new and for some reason we expect ourselves to be perfect from the start and be as good as somebody who’s done it for years. I’m guilty of it myself. I tried out watercolours a few months ago and was so disappointed when my first try didn’t look fantastic. Another thing I’ve learnt is that art work goes through something I call an ugly stage. No matter what media you use there is always an early stage where you just want to give up because it’s turning out to be a large blob of something rather than a branch of cherry blossoms. The thing to always remember is that if you keep working through this stage it will come together and look amazing. Believe in yourself.

Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
I’m a bit quiet with my work at the moment but the best place to find me right now is my blog. Originally started with the intention of showing work in progress. I can also be found on Twitter where I post many sketches and work I’m currently having fun or struggling with.

Thank you for not letting your biggest challenge of sharing your artwork stop you from sharing it with us Siobhan, I think it's something many of us can attest to when we had over our work to someone close to us, even if we feel the butterflies and do it anyway (and yes, sometimes I still get nervous posting something, especially when I know many people may see it). The only thing I can say for sure that helps dissolve the nervousness is practice, and the more you do the more you will see a change where it'll flip in the balance to be more excitement - and sometimes you'll actually be psyched to show people your stuff, it's awesome when that happens! ....but like anything with art it doesn't always come instantly, or without work =)

Do you want to be featured in an interview here?
Email me or click the link to find all the details here =)


Hey guys,
just a quick FYI that though I should be writing a Tell All Tuesday post now due to 'technical difficulties' with my email provider I can't get into my artist folder so TAT will be posted tomorrow (assuming that the technical difficulties are just a hitch and not the start of the end of the internet....it could happen). See you tomorrow =)

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Quick n' Easy Projects

So I've not had much time to spend in the studio just messing around of late, all my creative time has been spent on Journal Workshops (who knew starting a Ning would be more work after it's launch than before? lol) or making up products for my shop as I've been blessed with sales this month. But last night I decided to make a few things just for me, just for the sake of it to release steam, but I still wanted them to be quick to keep me moving through creativity, no hard work going off here oh no lol so here's three quick easy projects I did:

1: Sharpie Pen Journal Page

For a super quick journal page grab a sharpie pen and be bold, draw something without preamble for the foreground first, then worry about the background after - something super quick like flowers and spatters for a background works just as well as anything else does it not? I used watersoluables like gelatos to colour - quick fast coverage, no headaches, job done =)

I also started another page, this time background first: 

For a quick background I will nearly 100% of the time head straight to my scrap paper drawer - decoupage some scraps, gesso & acrylic a little with a rag then use some acrylic inks to add splashes of colour. The longest time required here is the drying time of the inks, so I think it's always a good way spend 15mins so you can leave it overnight and next day you've a new background ready to go when you want it =)

2: Paint A Pebble

If you follow my facebook page or my vlog channel you would probably have seen that I love crystals and stones. I often just randomly collect them, so naturally I had a couple laying on the windowsill of my studio...doesn't everyone? Acrylics work fine on them, I did seal the main painted side with a spray varnish for some extra protection but given that I do love the naturalness of stones I left a hidden window in the back:

3: Scrap Paper Beads

Just the basic paper bead technique from my Epic Paper Bead Tutorial, but I still love doing these. Quick & relaxing ahhhhhhhhh I call them one of my 'lazy crafts'. And that was about all I had time for.

What about you?
What are you quick n easy projects/lazy crafts?
I'd love to know, let me know below...

Much love

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Sanja Radovanovic

the pic above is just a share from a recent trip, just coz. Grrrrrr. 
But it's tuesday, which means it's Tell All Tuesday not a share of recent places I've been phone pics lol so here we go, this week's featured artist is Sanja enjoy

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
My name is Sanja Radovanovic and I am a student. I have been doing all kinds of crafts since I can remember, from making jewelry and figurines out of different materials to paper crafts. When I was starting out I used to use anything that was on hand, so that is how begun to recycle things into something else. I try to use as many things as possible that would otherwise become trash and I became the collector of "junk" in my family. For example I have a box full of bottle caps. I just hate seeing people throw away things with so much potential to become a part of something beautiful. I mostly learned everything I know on my own by experimenting and I discovered the online crafting world just last year so I was overwhelmed with all the information. I had no idea there was so much out there.

What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
My biggest challenge at the moment is lack of time. Ever since I started grammar school I hadn’t had as much free time. I did some art on occasion during the school year, but being unorganized as I was it had an effect on my grades, so I mostly used my vacation time to craft like crazy. Now I am in the last year of grammar school and I’ve god important exams entire semester as well as preparations for university so that shortens my free time even more. Luckily I am more organized than before so I’ve created a system recently to overcome this problem. I marked out an hour every Saturday just for art, so instead of wasting time watching TV when there’s nothing on, I do what I love.

What is your heart’s greatest desire for your life as an artist?
I would like to learn all different crafts, but what I always dreamed of is to open my own workshop with all kinds of homemade goodies one day.

What advice would you offer to any perspective new artist?
Don’t be afraid of art. I find that sometimes new techniques or what not might keep us from trying something new simply because we’re afraid that it won’t turn out ‘right’. There is no right way, there’s your way. Sure, if you don’t draw or saw well you can always improve your skills, but it is your art, you project yourself into it, so don’t be afraid of making it your own. There is a saying I find very inspirational: ‘It’s not who you are that’s stopping you, it’s who you think you are not'

Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
Well, I’m new to the online crafting community. I have a youtube channel, but no videos uploaded yet, I am working on it though. And a Pinterest

Thank you for sharing Sanja, it's inspiring to hear from someone on the younger scale of our community being so free and yet mindful in their approach to art. I love the santas and the saying you shared, please let us know if you ever do open your workshop =)
ps the Collective of Collectors of Junk welcome you into the loving fold lol

Do you want to join the TAT-ed??
Email me or click the link to find all the details here =)

Friday, 7 March 2014

Inspiration Station: My First Free Class

Hi guys, so as those of you who have come over to Journal Workshops may know I have my first free class live already which is available to all. 

It is a creativity boosting art journaling workshop where the idea is to make inspiration happen and create some fab journals along the way too!

There is no required level of techniques, skills or equipment to take part. Therefore it is suitable for beginners, but hopefully more experienced artists will get something out of it too as the whole emphasis of this workshop is all on the process...and on being forevermore inspired.

Here is a quick video to give you a taster:

So if you would to join (you are more than welcome, and will be joining in with more than 500 members already) please visit 
Much love

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Angelina Slaymaker

Hi guys (I can't believe it is this already but...) Happy March!!

I'm sorry that having been busy the last month with Journal Workshops I have not been around much but there has still been feature Tuesday posts happening =)
so let's get on with this one...

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are
I guess I will start by introducing myself, my name is Angelina Slaymaker. I live in Washington state usa. And if I tell the truth I am 37 years old. I have had the blessing of having a disability called Osteogenisis Imperfecta (Brittle Bones). Some may not view this as a blessing but it has afforded me the time to grow as an artist. As to what kind of artist am I? That is truly hard to narrow down, I love to work with so many thing's. Right now I guess I would say mixed media plus. I also work with polymer clay, Draw, Paint, etc.….

What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
Space…..There is never enough of it. I always have painted paper and scraps and cardboard and well everything stacked everywhere. I don't have a separate craft space so I have always said 'my bed room is a craft studio with a bed'.

On a personal note I always have a hard time taking a complement on my work. It is very hard not to always say: oh it's not that good. I always need to work on that. I also find it hard to know if I'm a crafter or an artist. I never know where I stand.

What is your greatest personal achievement either in your art, or because of it?
This question really got me thinking. I have been doing one form of art or another my whole life. I spent much of my time growing up in cast and in wheelchairs so I had the time to learn. And as I have gotten older I continue to try to learn all I can about all different art forms. And while I feel that I have achieved many things I have set out to do I think one of the best Is Not being satisfied with what I already know, and always being willing to try what's next.

What advice would you offer to any perspective new artist?
I have had many people tell me they have no talent. Unfortunately this stops them from even trying. First of all it's not all about the finished product it's about how you feel while your making it. About letting go of everything and just not thinking. And when you do that often people find that they have a talent they never let themselves find.

Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
I can be found at http://www.flickr.com/photos/iceteacrafts/ As well as on Pinterest. And I can be reached at iceteacrafts@gmail.com

Thanks for sharing Angelina, amen to the space thing but having recently put up a discussion board on Journal Workshops to share pics of our art spaces I've realised that's it's actually the norm to be limited on the space we can attribute to our art. All the lovely scrapbooking room tours that are the size of a small department store, with as many supplies as to fill a department store, are the exception, not the reality and I think that's nice. For some reason I like creating a lot more in my cramped tiny indoor studio than my slightly more spacious outdoor one, which I just tend to chillax and do bits and pieces in, so way to go 'craft studio with a bed', it works and you're creative there & that is much better than having ten times the space that is never used!

Do you want to be a featured TAT artist??
To be featured email me or find all the details here =)

Much love

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Introducing Jennibellie's Journal Workshops...

Hi guys I have very some exciting news...
I am *finally* going to be doing online classes yaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!

I know some people have been waiting for me to do this for a long time, but now I really am doing it yay! So I have been working hard making a fab space so that I can not only host workshops, but also host activities & groups too! Below is a short video which contains the basic info...

I really hope you do sign up and take my first *F*R*E*E* class with me.

To sign up for my class you will need to first sign up to the site and then request to join the class - so make sure you provide a valid email or you won't get access. If you don't know where else to click just look out for the big bold button on the left that says 'Jennibellie's Free Class, Click Here to Join' kinda thing ;)

I'm so super stoked about this, it's taken me a long time and a lot of effort to get here so I hope you will come on the journey with me.

Love to you all
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