Tuesday 27 November 2012

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Sachi Shah

Hi guys I've a great Tell All Tuesday interview for you today, I think you'll find it very romantic ;) I'd have to check my older computer but I think this week we have hit the 6 month mark of TAT interviews, which is pretty incredible! Whoop, go artists! However my interview-ready inbox is now running low so if you want to be featured & help me keep this series running NOW is the time to do it! Once people stop sending me their stories & artwork to share with regular consistency I am closing this feature so if you want your voice heard shout it out to me asap! Now this weeks interview is the third teenager I think we have featured and my, oh my, if in a beautiful dream could come wrapped in a gorgeous package I think this interview is it - you'll know what I mean when you read it. Please enjoy this stunning interview from a stunning heart:

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are
My name is Sachi, and I am 13 years young. Art has already played an act of thievery upon my heart- and I am beyond grateful it has. I am fascinated by the intricate ironwork of typewriters, the symbolism of birdcages, and the amount of wonder and comfort books can provide. I enjoy artists such as Gustav Klimt, Carson Ellis, Camilla Engman and of course- Vincent Van Gogh. I wouldn't classify myself as a 'type' of artist, as I believe we are all wandering souls who paint in order to feel. I do however, tend to create mixed media artwork and love bookbinding (credits to Jenny for allowing my to do so). I prefer painting on wood as it has this texture and sometimes the tree rings show through and it creates the most beautiful and subtle effect beneath all the layers of paint. All in all, I'd consider myself a mixed media artist who still has a long way to go. 
What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
I suppose my biggest challenge is not allowing myself to be exposed to different art as much as I could. My parents have great access to art galleries around the city, and know artists personally, but I never take that to advantage and I feel I'm holding myself back because of that. I want to go to art galleries every weekend, and come back feeling infinite because I've seen so much soul - but I don't. Perhaps it's because I think the internet will be enough to sustain my inspiration, but I know I need to go and see the real thing if I want to improve. Similarly, I feel like I restrict myself to one kind of art only, and that is mixed-media. This is the age I should be trying everything. Nothing yet is set in stone, so I may as well see what's underneath those stones before opportunity is lost in the dust and wonder that is this Earth. 
What is your heart’s greatest desire for your life as an artist?
I want to live in Paris. I want to live in the beautiful and dreamlike city that is Paris. I remember going two winters ago, and was captivated by the magnificent architecture and the snow that fell atop everything, it refused to stop embracing the lampposts and sidewalks. I know that once I develop my skills, I will live there in a matter of years. Art will take me places, I am beyond certain it will. I will live in a tiny apartment with wrought iron windows and a little balcony overlooking the city. I will type letters everyday on my Olivetti typewriter, and I will drink coffee. I will paint and paint and paint, until my fingers are edging exhausting but I am edging completion. 
What is your greatest personal achievement either in your art, or because of it?
I think it's given me many opportunities such as this one. I also have an art exhibition soon held at a art gallery where people can buy artworks for christmas presents or whatever, and that's great. I've almost completed my collection for that, but school is slowing me down with all the tests and exams. I just need a break to recollect and sigh in peace. My aunt is an artist, and she bought quite a few of my artworks so I feel quite achieved in that aspect as I've earned money through my art. I do not, however, like the feeling. My room walls are bare now, and I cannot stand that. I guess I'd rather have the paintings than the money. Art has helped me see. Clarity was brought about in the blurriest of times, and when the world ceases to exist, I will remain within my paintbrush strokes, and typed up letters.
Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
I have a blog where I post some artwork, but its not the best quality photos. I'm usually rash and use my phone to snap quick pics of the work. But here is the link nonetheless- http://tigers-have-found-me.tumblr.com/ Charles Bukowski quotes anyone?

Thank you so much for sharing Sachi, not only is your work glorious but I love your open heart & clear ambition. Art is obviously your passion and will always be integral to your life. To pick up on your points in your answer to your biggest challenge I think you feel like there are certain things you feel you 'should' be doing, but I do not think you need to be so hard on yourself regarding visiting galleries or what materials/types of art you 'should' be trying. When I lived in London I took advantage of visiting art galleries and museums when I could but you know where I have been the most prolifically creative? It was when I moved outside of London - because I no longer had so much inspiring art from my surroundingsthe inspiration came more directly from inside me. Besides art is not just what is hung up on a wall of a building marked 'gallery' it is around us everyday, in everything we do and your surroundings will inspire you, whether or not that includes online influences or more 'physical' ones. As for what you 'should' be doing in your art, well my dear your work is fantastic and as far as I'm aware mixed media is all about mixing it up, or at least that is what it is supposed to be...I know we dub 'mixed media' as a certain style of art now, but in reality the root of it is not about what 'look' is created but the fact that it is created from a variety of materials. If you are creating mixed media then I think many people would agree you ARE trying different things already. Again wonderful interview Sachi, you've such a beautiful way of seeing and I wish you every success for your arty dreams in the future =D

So once again if you want to be a featured artist and keep this series going email me, you can find all the details here =)

Sunday 25 November 2012

Material Investment (and a Faux Gelli Plate Printing Video Tutorial)

Okay so this gelli printing business is suddenly *everywhere* & initially I wasn't much bothered about it, not being one for crafting trends. It has often been my view that things created by the industry are never really brand new, just a reinvention of an older concept - and I guess the same can be said here as monoprinting with glass or gelatin has had a much longer lifespan than nicely packaged craft industry creations. However, I appreciate any tools that are brought out that make a creative life easier so I decided I would own one before I snubbed it as being just another industry trend.
Well I looked everywhere to purchase one in the UK, and while I can get them, they cost as much P&P to get them here (& sometimes more) than the actual product - which would take it to the cost up to that of a new guillotine, or crop-a-dile, or any other of my 'live-by' and use everyday tools. I judge the investment of my art supplies by making them comparable on a scale of usability and value to me: if something is ridiculously expensive but makes my life easier & I use it everyday then I pay it – my scrapbox desk is a good example here. Otherwise if the cost of the product does not equal the use I would get out of it on my scale I do without or find alternatives; so that is what I decided to do here and I created a faux gelli printing technique with what I already had.
my 'faux' gelli plate printing results
There's no reason one cannot play just because one does not have the correct craft-industry approved products!! The results are quite groovy actually, and naturally I created a tutorial for you guys to play too ;)
I hope it is of use to you if you fancy trying this technique and don't want/can't afford to get the gelli plate. Much love Jennibellie x

FYI there's still 3 days left to win my Gratitude Junk Journal 
on facebookclick the link for details =)

Friday 23 November 2012

I'm trying...

desperately to get on and create an eco-friendly diy tutorial for christmas but ya know what?? Muse wants to do other things...seriously she is not leaving me alone to get on with anything, other than what she wants, right then and right there. Look at this paper on my desk - this is from *another* fabulous one hour idea that just had to be executed IMMEDIATELY, no if's, no but's!
One hour?! Just look at this mess - well actually you can't, as I'm intentionally limiting you to just this portion of the desk lol but I'm spending more time cleaning, than I am actually creating with how quickly Muse is changing gears on me. One minute everything needs to be clean and crisp so as to not ruin the pretty metals pieces, beads and gems I'm using, the next paint is EVERYWHERE and I've ruined my freshly painted nails that I thought would be safe for at least a day with the 'clean' crafts lol
Sneaky-peaky at the eco-friendly diy tutorial - yep it really is eco-friendly, just you wait, you'll looooooooooove it =D
But you know what, it may sound like I'm complaining here but HELL NO. 
yeah baby =D

A couple of nights ago Muse made me make this video below for Thanksgiving (even though I'm English lol), in case you haven't seen it here it is:
The Journal giveaway is open to all countries on my facebook page here. Good luck if you enter =)
Byeeeee for now, Jennibellie =D

Tuesday 20 November 2012

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Phoebe aka JandrAthala

Hello lovely creatives
I get shocked every time I come to prepare the Tell All Tuesday interviews for you that another week has gone by so quickly, and then I marvel at the fact there are still artists wanting to take part & share their experiences, struggles and hopes with us. So as it's Thanksgiving this week let me just say a big THANK YOU to everyone that has taken part so far, and give a shout out to those that have not yet, but are thinking about it (who are still being shy) to say DO IT, email me! What do you have to lose? I don't bite I promise ;) lol 

This week it's an artist that I'm betting many people may already know, because I've never known someone who can get around like this gal can (I'm talking in our internet space here of course, tut, what were you thinking?!), she is such a positive, active force in our art community and it's a pleasure to have her as this weeks featured artist, please enjoy Phoebe's interview:
Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
I always find this type of thing hard to answer.... because I keep thinking that someone that knows me would give better answers to that... But.. I am an animal lover (especially dogs, and especially Golden labs - but I love ALL animals), I'm a vegetarian. And I am a creative being... I am mostly self thought, but have taken a few art classes.... and a correspondence art course.... I love to try new-to-me mediums.. I don't really fit into "one category"... but I guess "Fantasy Artist" is the closest.... I love paper crafting, coloured pencil drawing, mixed media - art journaling (my current obsession), amateur photography, and acrylic painting the most, but I have been carving my own stamps, making artist wire and bead creations, cutting my own stencils, and etc.... And hope to learn to carve wood, someday. I really don't know what else to say... 

Oh! ... and my name is Phoebe, AKA: Athala, or JandrAthala, or Athala Miley. (I would like it to be simple and the same name everywhere, but due to account complications and etc... I have had to use different ones).
What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
I have many challenges, but my biggest one is that I can't keep up with myself! I have too many ideas and want to participate in too many creative things... And each day, several more ideas and inspiration come to me.... It gets Overwhelming, and often leads to my not accomplishing anything at all - because I get stuck trying to figure out which one to work on first. ... Or Feel stifled - because I am missing something (material, space, know how- etc..) to be able to complete the one I really feel like doing. I sometimes, successfully overcome this, by choosing the project with the closest deadline (oftentimes self imposed) - or 'Highest Priority" (like a sympathy or get well card for example)... OR just by working on the one I am MOST in the mood for (and have all that I need to do so).

Many times, I have several projects in mind that seem to have equal levels of desire/priority to be created.... which causes me to get stuck again. Often, I will create an abstract or do something in my art journal - Just so I'm creating SOMETHING. And I have to write down my ideas and scribble little doodles and notes... so that I won't forget... and to preserve some of my sanity... - but I often have forgotten some of it that I can never quite get back so if I can't work on the idea right away... that project will often be "different" than the original idea - which sometimes bugs me, but usually I figure it's ok... Half the fun is in writing the idea down anyway.. And that makes the fact that many will never be created, ok too.
Do you think you have achieved a uniquely recognizable style as an artist, or do you find it a struggle to find your own style?
Kind of both... I do have my own style, but the more I am influenced by others, the more my style changes.. to the point that I'm not sure if I'm just a "Copy cat" or still doing my own thing.... It's very important to me, to be unique... so this is a constant "issue". 
What is your heart’s greatest desire for your life as an artist?
The 3 biggest daydreams I have are: 1. For my art to somehow make a positive difference in people/animal's lives. 
2. To figure out something "Different/Unique" - to create something "new" out of an unusual material... or just do something different and unexpected with "normal" materials... 
And 3. I daydream about having a well organized studio with at least 2 assistants... and Models and .... (I dream big, what can I say?!)

Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
Right now... I guess You Tube : http://www.youtube.com/user/JandrAthala is the only place, really. I am on Facebook, but only have a "Personal Page". I am trying to decide whether or not to start a blog (and if so, which type)... If I ever do create one, I will "announce" it on You Tube.

Thanks so much Phoebe, I looooooooooooooove the idea of at least two assistants - I think I might nick it, one of my imaginary assistants can do all my filming, then the other assistant can do all the editing & latte drinking (bringing me one at the same time of course!) then I can just get on with creating the art...while looking at my imaginary model lol I also get the idea overload thing, but as many people have but it to me at least we have the ideas in the first place! These are the times we have to be thankful that Muse is working for us, even if she does keep us up at night sometimes until we do actually get up and write that idea down lol great interview & remember if you want to be a future featured artist click the TAT lady on the right ---->

....and remember if you want to buy Jennibellie a christmas present there is now two studio assistants & a model on the wish list!!! ;)

Friday 16 November 2012

Water, water everywhere and not a project is done!

Hello! this is just a quick post in which I have nothing really to show you as I'm working on about 10 projects, yet nothing at the same time lol does anyone else work like this??  There is half-finished things dotted all about my art room:
This is the current state of my desk:
but from which I'm hoping I'll get a nice surprise of 10 lovely projects finished at once; though as they're all experimentation's it's unlikely that they'll work the way I want them to, get completed at all or that they will actually be very lovely if by some miracle they do manage to either work well or get completed.
 Still, I find sometimes you have to not know where you're going to get to where you're supposed to be! 

Martin Luther King Jr says it better than me:
'Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step. '
Amen! Martin Luther, Amen!

Tuesday 13 November 2012

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Angella Dee deJager

Hello, I'm running a little late today so am going to get straight into our Tell All Tuesday, before it becomes Tell All Wednesday ;) whatever time it is where you are reading it it is a good 'un so please enjoy...

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
I would describe myself as a mixed-media artist. I love almost all art mediums and can never stick to just one medium or one technique. I love learning and trying out new techniques all the time. I have been passionate about art and all kinds of crafts since I can remember. As a child I drove my grandmother and mom to distraction – always wanting “just a little bit of wool” or “just a little bit of fabric” or “ just a little bit of this or that” to try out a new idea that I had come up with. I am a very creative person - I’m just not happy unless I am making something or decorating something. 

What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
The biggest challenge I face personally and as an artist is that I suffer from Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia and have done for the last 16 years. This is very frustrating because I have very very limited energy and would like to spend that energy doing what I love – art – but sometimes life intervenes and we have to do other necessary things. I also take care of my 71 year old mom , who lives with me, she suffers from Chronic lung disease and is on an oxygen machine. So finding time and energy and pain-free hours to do art is quite a challenge. But the creative drive (force) within me is so strong that sometimes I will lie in bed and draw if I have to. Then I finish the detailed part of the artwork at another time when I am feeling stronger. I feel that art and craft has been my saving grace especially over these past 16 years of illness (& divorce) because it has kept me from becoming depressed and “giving up”. I believe that art is truly the best therapy out there!! My favourite quote has become: “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are” –T. Roosevelt
Have you ever found anything that originally daunted you as an artist that you can now overcame easily?
Another challenge that I have a constant battle with concerning my art is PERFECTIONISM. I have always been a perfectionist and it has held me back in my art to a great degree. It prevents one from just experimenting and having fun with art because you are always under the impression that each and every item you create must be perfect and wonderful. It has taken me SOOOO long to begin getting over this particular problem that sometimes I want to kick myself for all the time I wasted being miserable because my art “wasn’t as good as such and such” or “my style is too na├»ve and simple” or “ I am not the BEST artist out there” ! A book that really helped me with this was Brene Brown’s “The Gifts of Imperfection”. She says: “Creativity, which is the expression of our originality, helps us stay mindful that what we bring to the world is completely ORIGINAL and cannot be compared. And, without comparison, concepts like “ahead” or “behind” or “best” or “worst” lose their meaning.” So I am now on a path to just creating what is in my heart and having FUN with the process and not worrying so much about the outcome. And its’ WONDERFUL!
What messages do you try to portray in your work and do you feel you achieve it?
The messages that I try to portray in my art are Purity, Goodness, Wholesomeness and Simple Beauty. Because I believe that the modern world is severely lacking in these qualities. I also like to incorporate words and quotes into my artworks quite often, because I feel that, more than ever, people need encouragement in these days.
Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
At the moment I sell my art privately – mostly to family and friends. I hope to start selling my art via internet in the near future. You can view my art and all the other crafty things I get up to at my blog: angelladeedesigns.blogspot.com

Thanks so much for your share Angella, personally I think the points you made especially in your last answer are totally spot on & I think many people can relate to your own story with art too because I don't think I've ever spoken with another artist who does not consider it their therapy for dealing with troubles in their own life, nor had to battle with their perfectionism - but I'm so glad it has not stopped you. It is something I feel passionate about as I did let it stop me until I was mid twenties but the trick, like with so much else, is not to overcome it or expect it to go away, because it won't but to work with it. Thanks again Angella, very insightful interview :)
PS I have to admit I really loved the quotes and references you added to your interview, very nice touch ;)

Would you like to be a featured TAT artist,
click the link on the right for more info =)

Saturday 10 November 2012

My Troll Book

Hey guys, just a quick share today, my online chums Lisa & Yolanda sent me a mini journal on the day I reeeeally needed to get out some negative emotions regarding online trolls (some of you may remember it from a post I did on my facebook page), and turn it into something positive...hence my Troll Book was born:
Thank you so much ladies =) I fill it with quotes, sayings & things other nice online people have given to me =D 
Here is the original video the ladies did to show the book before they sent it:
It's really working so far, helping me psychologically understand the negative impacts the internet has had on human nature, including releasing some of the worst traits of our behaviour due to the safety of anonymity, which unfortunately I think will only be exasperated with the growth of the internet in coming years. 
But most importantly it's working to remind me why I bother doing what I do when it does get me heat from certain people who seem to have made a mission statement of these worst traits...and basically the answer is; none of it is for them, it's for you ;) you who is sat there reading this and the reason why I will continue to do what I do - mainly trying to bring joy to myself and others - regardless of what the mission statement people will ever think, feel or do!
Much love, Jennibellie x

Friday 9 November 2012

Texture...in 2 videos

Hi guys, I've two new videos for you. 
I know, I know I've done quite a few videos over the last couple of weeks; I think it is subconsciously because we are now in November my video muse is anticipating being engulfed by the chaos of Christmas and new year, which I usually emerge from in February wondering what on earth happened lol so I guess she's trying to get her stuff done now so she (and you!) can also have a break from Jennibellie vids for a bit...may be, we'll see ;)
The first one I uploaded a couple of nights ago is an easy & super quick (under 3 min) texture technique video:
The second video I posted this evening is where I have developed this technique into a full journal page & show my complete process. Sometimes I think having extreme texture on a page can be daunting, as you're not sure what to do on top of it. Therefore as I created this page I talked through my material and process choices for ensuring I kept all the texture incorporated into the page, because if you embrace the texture & make the page all about it it can be loadsa fun:
I hope you enjoy, please feel free to 'like' & share with friends or let me know what you think. Much love & happy weekend, Jennibellie =) x

Tuesday 6 November 2012

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Emma Szostok

Hey guys happy 6th of November =) .... I cannot believe I am writing 'November' already, what happened to this year??? We are already on week twenty-two of TAT, which actually makes me feel woozy to think about haha this week's featured artist is studying at university for her degree in Illustration, please enjoy her interview:

Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are
Hi, My names Emma Szostok and I’m an Illustrator & Crafter. I live near Manchester and I’m currently in my last year at Salford University studying Illustration. Drawing is everything to me and always has been, through all the academic stuff in school that I was terrible at, I always knew I had something I was ok at and had a passion for doing. I have a degree in Graphic Design and when I leave University this time I will have my BA Hons.. Yayy !
What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it?
I think for me its got to be my confidence. I always compare myself to other and think how bad my work is and how others are fantastic at what they do. But then I realise that I’m unique and I do things in my own way and its good to not be a perfect drawer or designer because I still bring something to the table that others might not do in my design work. Never put yourself down with your work, you do things how you want them to be done and be confident in being unique !

Do you think you have achieved a uniquely recognizable style as an artist, or do you find it a struggle to find your own style?
If I answered this question last year I would say I’m majorly struggling to find where I fit into this wide industry but in the past 6 month I’ve come into my own !
I wouldn’t say I have a set style but I have a few ways I like to work. One being with stencils and paint or spray paint that the technique I’m developing on at the moment and loving every minute of it and my other is I like to draw and use markers. I have a big thing about use sharpies at the moment there my most favourite tool to use.
What is the best thing / worst thing that art has brought into your life?
The best thing it’s brought into my life is my boyfriend I met him at college when we was studying Graphic Design and I think it’s also brought me confidence and taught me to express myself. It also gives me great pleasure to be able to create things for other and watch them smile and be grateful for a piece of work I've created.
The worst thing has got to be the amount of money I spend of materials and bits and bobs. I live in the pound shop and just grab whatever I like the look of at the time I constantly go in to check for new stock that’s been put out. I think any stationery / art & crafts store is the worst thing for me I can spend so long looking round and then buying stuff that I don’t need at the time and probably never use
Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art?
There are quite a few ways to find my work, I think I’m on nearly the majority of networking sites....here goes..
Instagram : emmalouiise91
Twitter : em_louiise
I think that’s covered the main and most networking sites I use. I upload to these several times a day especially when I have projects on or I’m doing personal work. I like to update people and keep them interested in what I do.

Thanks Emma for your interview, I especially like the fact you said your biggest challenge includes comparison to others, which we all deal with, but I think can be a bit embarrassing to admit so thank you for your honesty. It's difficult to not compare our artwork, like we do our lives, with others but your words 'be confident in being unique' hit the nail on the head, I'm trying to embrace my differences & not see them as meaning I am 'bad' or 'less' than anybody else. And though I haven't visited for a while, I so hear you about the pound shop ;) lol

Want to be a featured TAT artist,
click the link on the right for more info =)

Sunday 4 November 2012

I love it, I love it, I love it!!!

OMG! You can tell I'm excited because I've used the term 'OMG!' lol
I had to share this page with you, even though I'm now off working on other pages because I just love, love, *LOVE* how it turned out:
What I love most is the paper & how quickly it came together because of all the paper I had ready to add the colour and texture. It's my waste paint paper from my 'crafty solutions' video, which I love so much I find it difficult to use!! 
Here I created torn layers from alternative papers and OMG you should run your hands over this - if you're as tactile as I am you'd be in heaven with all the texture going off all over the place lol. We need to get rid of the misconception that decorative paper only comes out of the scrapbooking or giftwrap section...all of my christmas presents are going to be wrapped in this! (If I can bear to give it away anyway lol). Here is the original video in case you missed it or just want a recap:
I'm off out for Sunday lunch now, whoop! =D see ya laters, Jennibellie x

PS: I currently have a lil giveaway over on facebook, it's not much but you can check it out here: http://www.facebook.com/Jennibellie

Friday 2 November 2012

How to Like Your Journal Pages

Hello, hello =) I hope everyone had a happy Halloween week, I just created a video I've had bubbling in my cauldron for a while, although I didn't know that until I came to do it...I love how our Muses (and our subconscious too I think) work and direct us. 
I think this is probably quite a newbie video, in that it was discussions with new art journalers that prompted it, but also it might help anyone who needs some advice of practical steps to boosting their artistic confidence.
I hope this video helps if any of the issues I discuss effect you. I understand that there are many artists in our community that will feel they have a hold of this stuff themselves, so really don't need me to sit and tell them, however I do feel it is important to give what we can when we have experience and/or confidence in our artwork, so that others can benefit from our learning curves. Otherwise how will our little online community expand or get more people interested if we don't share some of the secrets from within?

Much love and a happy weekend to you guys =) Jennibellie
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