Wednesday, 30 November 2016

In My Eyes - journal project

Hi again my dear ones.
That's right, I'm back home from my travels, planning to take some downtime and enjoy my home, studio and family life for a while... It's hard to express how important it is for me to be able to visit you, meet you all in the classroom, encourage to create and watch you make beautiful things. I love how it is boosting your confidence and fills your hearts with joy. It does fill my heart with happiness and it is the balm for my soul. It's priceless.
During my classes I'm not only trying to help you explore mixed-media techniques but also find your own voice and express yourself in your natural way. I believe it is much more important than creating artwork that would be considered to be "pretty" or "appealing". Creative process should bring us happiness, but also relief, de-stressing, ability to speak up our mind... it is all there!

Today I'm sharing some of the journal pages, which are great illustration to the statement above. They were made with no other intention but to play, to express my feelings, clear my head and give myself permission to breathe. They were never intended to be published too - but somehow they fit perfectly into my current situation and mood.



Both pages were done around one topic - "eyes" and are freestyle interpretation  of course. There weren't many techniques used - just as much as i needed to tell my story.  Page above is based on transferring technique - I used Art Basics Soft Matte Gel as my medium for that and I have to admit I love the watercolour pencil effects I got working on the Art Basics Clear Gesso!



This page is based on  elements from 7 Dost Studio "Fortune-teller" collection, scraps of thread and fabric and finally some art mediums: Art Extravagance Rust Paste, some tea stain and colourful mist, tiny bit of Glossy Accents.

It makes me a bit uneasy to see how close these pages are to my situation now, perfect illustration indeed! I guess this is the REAL power of art journaling - ability to evoke emotions.

Here are some of the products I used - all listed from our Mixed Media Place Online Store:


Hey! Don't forget to visit us on Friday to see new, fabulous project and tutorial from mysuper talented Creative Team!
Sending warmest hugs

Monday, 28 November 2016

Rusted Jewelry Display

Hello again Friends!
November has been really exciting with all the beautiful artworks from my new Creative Team.
Grab a cup and spend a moment revisiting these inspiring posts: Athanasia's vintage art journaling, Gayle's 'tendrils' of excess thought assemblage, Karolina's textural queen bee, Kasia's nostalgic canvas, Kassa's vibrant vintage girlies, Marta's journaling in 3D, Sanda's mysterious fossils and textures.
Aren't they all amazing?! I'm feeling really lucky and grateful to be supported by this bunch of talented Artist!

Last post this month belongs to John - a grand finale to our month of introductions. :) I have a feeling you will absolutely love John's creation - enjoy!
Because I work in a variety of different mediums, I like to refer to my art as "mixed media fusion" where I can combine my love of building colors and textures with mediums and incorporate it into bookmaking, 3D pieces, jewelry and paper crafting.
Here's my first project for Finnabair Creative Team - A Rusted Jewelry Display:
Besides using my favorite Prima products for creating projects, I’m always on the look out for objects to incorporate. This is one of my thrift store finds – a blank jewelry display. I couldn’t pass up the price for only $1.99 and knew that I could transform it somehow into something amazing! Here's what it looked like 'before':
One of my favorite Finnabair products that I love to use is the Art Extravagance Sculpture Medium to transform an ordinary object into an entirely new work of art with flowing texture of fabric.
It’s quite easy to use the Sculpture Medium to form and shape fabric.
For this project I used the Neutral Beige Sculpture Medium along with the light weight muslin from the Art Basics Fabric Pack.
Simply pour the Sculpture Medium into a container, enough to fully saturate the fabric because the medium not only shapes the fabric but acts as an adhesive as well. I have found that this is one of the few products that I actually wear gloves while working with just to avoid having to clean my hands.
The beauty of working with the Sculpture Medium is that there is plenty of working time to create as little or as much texture with the fabric. Many times I simply drape the fabric down and let the fabric take its own form and shape.
For this jewelry display I started at the top around the neck and worked my way down to the base, wrapping the fabric around to the back. Once I felt that I had the look that I wanted, I used a heat tool to set the fabric.
I have found that this will set the fabric enough to continue adding paints and other mediums, but the fabric will continue to stiffen up over the next day or two.
Just like real rust on metal, building a beautiful rust color and texture takes a little bit of time.
With a brush, I used the Brown Rust Rust Effects Paste as the base color on the fabric, applied generously. I quickly heat set the brown, which when dried as a beautiful matte finish with a nice texture.
Using a dry brush technique, I then began highlighting areas with the Black Berry Art Alchemy Metallique Paint. Once dried, I highlighted with Art Ingredients Rust Mica Powder using my finger.
With the base coat applied, now the rusting of the fabric could begin! For the next layering of color, I applied the Red Rust Paste with a brush randomly to add more color and texture then heat set.

Once dried, I first highlighted areas with Metallique Emerald Green followed with Metallique Turquoise paints to create a funky green/blue contrasting rust color and then heat set.

Using the Yellow Rust Paste, I highlighted the fabric to give even more rust color and additional texture. In some areas that I felt had too much lighter colors, I simply added a little Brown and Red Rust Effects Pastes.

I could spend hours creating different color combinations and building textures – it is quite addictive! To add a little more metallic shimmer and highlights, I randomly applied Copper Mica Powder.
Using the Rust Effects Paste on fabric brought a completely different finished look to this project with just the right amount of texture that didn’t overwhelm the fabric.
Normally I would incorporate a variety of different Mechanicals into my projects, many times using texture paste as an adhesive to hold them down.
Since I want the jewelry that will be displayed on this piece to be the true focal point, I decided to only use one of the Mechanicals from the "Plated Labels" set around the neck of the bust held into place with a piece of brown satin ribbon.
I’m beyond excited at the results of this project and how it is the perfect background for my completed jewelry pieces, like this one which was colored using Metallique acrylic paints and highlighted with Green Mica Powder before being set with resin to complete the cabochon that I then beaded around to create this necklace.
I hope this project has inspired you to get creative with Sculpture Medium with fabric, or even creating your own stunning projects using the Rust Effects Pastes.

Always remember to share your projects with ALL of us for inspiration on the Finnabair & Friends Open Studio Facebook page or use the #finnabair hashtag on Instagram!
Until next time!
John

Products used:



Saturday, 26 November 2016

Ambassadors' Lounge - Meeting #1

Dear Friends,
As you know, a while ago I announced a very special Team of my Brand Ambassadors -
If you go right back to {this post}, you will be able to read more about these 7 beautiful Artists who kindly agreed to keep supporting me. Here they are:
And so we meet with them today in a brand new inspirational series.
Once a month they'll be sharing their favorite art projects, their thoughts and their knowledge.
Just imagine these posts as friendly, inspiring meetings in an Art Lounge. ;)
It's a great chance to take a peek at the desks of these talented Ladies, chat with them, ask a question and absorb creative inspirations.
In November our theme to talk about is "CREATIVE FLOW".
I've asked each of the Ambassadors to choose 1 project that they've created recently and that was the most fun to create. The one they feel was created right from the heart and soul, the one that made them lose track of space and time. Because that's what the feeling of Flow is all about and we all hope this feeling is familiar to you, dear Readers. :)

What makes you happiest in your creative process?
When do you feel the most You?
What makes your heart sing when making art?

Here's what the Ambassadors told us:

The best pages in my journal, and this is one of them, were made without too much thinking, keeping it simple and going with the flow.
I know that my mojo will start rolling by adding a little texture to the page. And a little bit of color to enhance that texture and make it pop. That doesn't require any thinking, doesn't it? :)
A page in my art journal that has a lot of meaning to me, makes it a good page in my book. And the simplicity to obtain the dramatic effect really fits what I wanted to tell on this one.
Now that the story is on paper, I can let it go and come back to it whenever I feel like it. If I ever feel like it ;)
It's not about fancy technique or impressive art. What makes my heart sing the most is the meaning and the process fitting that meaning. And that singing heart fuels my creative flow.

So, what get's your mojo flowing? What makes your heart sing? Now go, go and do just that!
Make sure you watch France's creative process in her video!



This project is, by far, one of my favorite creations.
It has everything in it that I love to use... a vintage photo and lace, Mechanicals and wax, paper clay and moulds, stencils and Metallique paints.
I started with the back of a stretched canvas and a picture,  then built it up from there.
Layering is what makes me happy. Building the project up from the background is what I love to do. I get lost in the application of each separate layer, "should I add more, is it enough already, maybe just a little bit more here?"
But what makes me feel the best is when it's done, my work table is cleaned off, and supplies all put back in their places.
I feel like I've created something I'm happy with, and now it's time to relax and enjoy the warm feeling of accomplishment. That makes me smile. :)



More about this gorgeous Lady of Grace collage on Linda's blog!



Actually getting the time to create makes me happy. :)
There are many hurdles for me to create so just getting the time is fabulous.
Whenever I create this kind of thing, I feel I am on a journey, a creative and evolving journey as I explore ideas that I have.
My heart sings when I find out that my art evokes feelings in others.

I like to create lil offbeat creatures and create a story to go with them. This is Avian Merman; he is part bird, part man, part fish creature.





You just have to see more photos of Louise's Avian Merman and read the whole story!



It's great to be back here on the blog! I would love to share one of my recent art journal pages.
As some of you know, I love making video tutorials and I love chatting in them. :) So {here} you can watch how I created this piece. I truly enjoyed making it as it was a challenge - my viewers requested me to create something wintery, mixed media and preferably a journal page. :)
I used two of my favorite Art Basics products: White Gesso and Art Stones.

My Creative Flow? I feel that the more I create, the better it goes, I have more ideas. I feel happiest when I can create, just for the sake of it. I simply love the fact that I can turn a plain page into a special work of art. Art journaling is what makes me smile. When I open my old book my heart is happy and my head instantly filled with ideas.


You can follow Marta's art adventures on her blog and social media!



An artwork particularly close to my heart is this vintage style tag / bookmark.
You won't be able to see it as I created many layers of paper here but that day I got really carried away with... a needle and thread. :)
I tried sewing on this smal piece of paper and it was letting out just one of many ideas running through my mind recently.
That day I finally carved out some time and let myself work on every single detail and just... play.
And I have to be honest - I love the final effect. It's so 'me' with all the layers, an old photo, vintage embellishments and coffee splashes.
While creating this piece I completely lost the track of time... I hope I will be able to experience it more often.
Whenever such moment happens, I think to myself that this is all I really need in life. :)


See more delicious details on Monika's blog!



What really makes me tick while creating, is the moment when the project starts to decide where it wants to go.
I might have a vision when starting, but during the process the project takes over and starts to lead the way. When that happens, the end result is usually something I really like and naturally the process is also very enjoyable!

Another thing that makes me smile is the paint and mediums on my fingers. It means that I've had some "me time", time to create, time to have fun. I love to feel the mediums, feel their thickness and flow on my fingertips. Not the best thing if you are working in sales and meet customers on daily basis, though! ;)





Read more about Riikka's inspirations for this brilliant project!
And if you're dreaming about meeting Riikka in person, read more about her Belgium December workshops and sign up!

*   *   *   *   *
Dear ones, we hope you like our new inspirational series. Let us know what you think! And most of all, we'd love to hear what Creative Flow means for you...
And like France said above -
 What get's your mojo flowing?
What makes your heart sing?
Now go, go and do just that!

We hope the meetings with Finnabair Ambassadors will spark some interesting conversations and hopefuly encourage you to spread your wings wider and be a little braver! :)

We hope to see you next month in our Ambassadors' Lounge!
Lots of hugs and happy creating you all!
Finn & the Team