A whole weekend of workshops does need some stamina, but the reward is two days of fun, laughter and sharing creative time with friends old and new. We were at Dawn's Studio and on Saturday I was teaching two classes - in the morning we were stamping and card making, then in the afternoon we switched our focus to jewellery made using various Ranger products. It was such a busy day that not many photos were taken and the samples I made are, at the moment, buried somewhere in one of the many bags and boxes that are either in the boot of the car or piled up behind me. As soon as I locate them I will take some pictures to show you what we were making.
We used coated gloss card with detailed stamps and Le Plume pens to create the images for the cards which were embellished with Tissue Tape, twine and alcohol inked leaves as well as those gorgeous liquid pearls that I keep harping on about at the moment! You can see what Sheila thought about David taking this snap! They do enjoy some banter and mutual teasing!The afternoon brought Melt Pots to the table and we poured clear UTEE over stamped images set into Memory Frames, made a simple flower brooch using Claudine Helmuth sticky backed canvas, a pendant made with clear Memory Capsules containing various beads, shells etc and we finished with a simple (but, I think, everyone's favourite!) brooch made using Gorjuss Girls images set behind Facets and each with an Idealogy Bauble. These are something that are featuring in next month's Crafts Beautiful (March issue I think?!) for a set of Gorjuss Girls projects that I have done. As per usual, I think we probably made quite a bit of noise as the classes are always such a social occasion and there is always some good natured ribbing (who can pour the most perfect UTEE layer for instance) and laughter. David and I hadn't seen all the Topaz crew since before Christmas, so it was lovely to catch up with everyone again - Brenda was a star as usual, keeping us all going with "brews" and biccies in between demonstrating in the shop, Gill, who was manning the tills, Jane who was beavering away making samples and Dawn was also there, sorting out all the products for her forthcoming workshop weekend. On Sunday Mary was the official refreshments manager. As ever, Topaz feels like a home from home with everyone being so welcoming and happy to help.
On Saturday evening I stayed with Rena and Stephen, and, as always, they made me feel really welcome. Rena and I relaxed while Stephen finished making dinner (!) which was delicious...sausage, cheese topped mash and caramelised onion gravy, a glass of wine (or was it two?) and apple pie for dessert....very naughty but definitely nice! We sat and had a really good catch up before a wonderful night's sleep and back to work on Sunday. Unfortunately I missed seeing my good mate Amy, who had been going to come to the workshop that day, as she wasn't well at all. So, hope you are feeling better now Amy, and hope you can make the next journalling day.
So, Sunday was an all day Art Journalling workshop which we had so many requests for. I managed to take more pictures this time! Here are some of the ladies working away, cutting out some figures from magazines to add to their pages.In the afternoon, everyone did some face painting...that's painting a face for a page as opposed to painting their own faces! This caused quite some consternation at first as almost everyone was less than confident in their painting faces ability! I wanted to cut through that self imposed barrier and, as you can see, the ladies all proudly showed the results of their (in some cases, first) artistic endeavours....you can see Sheila peeping over her face which she topped with a tiny hat! We used Colourwash Dyes, book pages, paint dabbers and Gesso to create interesting backgrounds which were embellished with patterns stamped in acrylic paint, doodles and collaged images. Everyone was working in sketch books which I had provided so that these could be used either as practice pieces with notes about techniques etc, or as full on journals. I like the idea of a journal about journalling if you see what I mean!
Here are each person's favourite pages in progress at the end of the day.......this one is from Joleene's journal - making the background with dabbers, stamps and distress inks and the figure is a magazine image which Joleene has applied Gesso over, scraped away areas and then reworked them to create a completely transformed look. Joleene has a real sense of adventure in her work and just "goes for it" which I love. Next is Sheila's favourite page which she created with book pages, Gesso and paint dabbers. She really enjoyed collaging the magazine images together and creating the wings from painted book pages. She's also started adding frames and doodles around the image. I can't wait to see how these pages develop. Time seemed to be something that we are all very aware of as it was a theme that seemed to evolve in a few pages...including in my own journals. This bold page is from Elaine's book and she really threw herself into the process...we all loved the way she chose to use a "typical" model image and then changed her completely by twisting the feet, replacing her face with a watch dial etc. I love the colours too! And next is Kath's favourite page in progress......Kath made the incredibly delicate egg for me which I showed on here a few months ago, and she confessed to me that she feels quite out of her comfort zone when working with papers, pens etc. However, she showed no signs of that this weekend and here she used Gesso and paints over book pages and made a brilliant job of the wings and toadstools that she created from scratch. Kath also showed us photographs of some of the eggs she has transformed into works of art....they are absolutely amazing and we are trying to pursuade her to teach some egg decorating classes. Below is a really delicately coloured spread that Rochelle is working on. The gorgeous image of the woman was the starting point and Rochelle took lots of time to choose the placing of each image, the colours and framing to create a very flowing page. I'm looking forward to seeing how Rochelle's pages progress as she has a really good eye for layouts.Victoria knew exactly that she wanted to have a mum theme for her journal as she is pregnant herself. I really loved watching Victoria's work unfold as she started out quite nervously having never done anything like this before, but, by the end of the day she was confidently doodling, cutting, sticking and painting! A natural journaller! Ethereal was the word which both Sonia, Karen and myself kept repeating whenever I came over to their work area. This page is Sonia's and I love the way she has softly blended the colours and chose images which perfectly suited the delicate effects. There was a happy coincidence too as Sonia added the dove images before she realised that the book page she used had reference to doves in it. (Weirdly....I have Radio 4 on as I write this, and they have just mentioned doves this second!). Here are Karen's pages and she is going to add some crystals going from the outstretched hand to the oversized bauble. Again, I love the colours that Karen chose and, hard to see in this photo, the delicate crackling effect that Karen drew around the framed areas. Chris brought some of her existing journal pages to show us and we all loved the very specific type of quirky humour that shone through them. Chris is really addicted to journalling now! Here is her work in progress with the time them (told you!) and as you can see, like many of us, Chris feels as if she is always chasing time! Can't wait to see where this page ends up! Don't forget to show me next time, or email me a photo or two!It was a brilliant day and I have promised that we'll do another journalling workshop before too long. We'll concentrate more on words, doodling and drawing next time. Oooh er! Talking of future workshop dates, I have booked two more at Dawn's and, just to clarify, all the workshops which are listed will all be going ahead and we are looking to add more. Just check the Topaz website for dates and themes, or on here for my specific classes. The two new dates for my classes are Sunday March 27th - 10am-12pm and 1pm-4pm. Then Sunday April 10th, also 10am-12pm and 1pm-4pm. I'll be posting the themes for each class shortly.
Christmas has been and gone, but I thought I'd post a picture of the Christmas card which I created. Knowing that I had a lot of cards to send, and knowing that I dare not send bought ones (!) but was under so much time pressure, I decided to draw, paint and collage a piece which I then made copies of and signed each one. Just to say that I did not tear out Bible pages to use...I photocopied a page from Luke which has the Nativity story and then used this to Gesso and paint over to create a subtle background. I drew and coloured the Angel, carefully cut her out and stuck her to the Nativity page. I painted more copied pages and cut those into the building shapes before adding those as well as the painted hillside. The cards were all assembled and I used different ribbons and gems as individual accents for each one.For anyone who likes the style of the buildings....watch this space! Now it's time for some intense sample making for Stitches. Lots of exciting new stamp designs and I have quite a large new range coming out which I will post sneaky peeks of as soon as I can without getting into trouble! Many thanks in advance to my good friends who have stepped in to help me to make a display piece for my demonstration area at the show, again, I'll be showing you what they are up to as soon as I can.
Well, this post has taken ages with all the photos to upload, so I will sign out now and hope everyone had as good a weekend as we did. Lindsay