Summer

Summer

Hello friends

I hope you are all well and happy, everything is good here 🙂

This is a page in my mixed media, altered book journal.  Ages ago we bought some garlic at the Garlic Farm and it came in this fantastic brown paper bag printed with a butterfly and lots of words relating to garlic, so I used that as one layer, then there was lots of paint, stamping and stencilling.  The words are just things I wrote down in my note book one lunchtime when I went and sat outside and soaked up the glorious weather.  Later I transferred them to my journal.

I can’t believe what a wonderful summer we are having, it seems like we’ve had weeks and weeks of summer, I LOVE it.

The only trouble is I am so busy I’ve not really had time to enjoy it as much as I’d like, but even when I’m stuck inside working it’s still good to look outside and see the sunshine so I’m not complaining.

Sorry it’s a short post tonight because I need to start ticking some more things off my ‘To Do’ list before it starts stressing me out.

Take care of yourselves and I’ll be back soon(ish)

Big love

AJ 🙂

 

 

© Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal, 2014 unless otherwise stated. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

You have the Power

You have the Power

 

Hello friends

I hope you are all keeping well, dry and warm.  We had a sunny day today, it’s been fantastic and I went out for walk.  By comparison on Friday we had heavy rain (nothing new there) and storms.  The ground is so saturated now, after weeks of mostly rain, there is nowhere for the water to go so on Friday we did have some fairly serious flooding on the Island.  The local newspaper put up a map of the Island on their website and by evening the map was completely covered in ‘road closed’ or ‘road flooded but passable with care’ signs.  When I drove home from work it was quite exciting as I had to drive through several streams that were crossing the road!

On Saturday I had to drive over to the other side of the Island, I was going to postpone my visit but when I got up the rain had stopped and when I checked the map most of the signs had been removed.  I had to take rather a long route to get to my destination but it was much better driving than the day before.

And today we’ve had glorious sunshine all day 🙂  It’s been so good for my soul to see the sun again.  I went for my walk on the same beach I visited at the beginning of the month. This time the tide was out far enough for me to be able to walk on the beach and I noticed there was a lot of storm damage, a couple of trees had fallen over and look at this small getty.  The photo on the left was taken on 2 Feb and the one of the right was taken today. The tide was out today so you get to see the horrible seaweed instead of the lovely sea. Although it was rickety looking a couple of weeks ago it did have some planking whereas today there are only the posts and a few cross bars left in place 😦

Binstead getty

 

The page above is in my Artstronauts Journal and it’s a reply to the page I posted in the middle of the week.  I am much happier with this page, the head and hat are a Zetiology stamp and I like the contrast of the black and white against the colourful page.

Right, I need to do some chores and get ready for work again tomorrow.  Have a great week and I’ll see you soon.

Big love

AJ 🙂

 

 

© Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal, 2014 unless otherwise stated. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Enjoy the Journey

Enjoy the Journey

 

Hello friends!

I hope all is good with you, I’ve been poorly but I’m feeling better now.  Sickness probably accounts for the ‘Senior Moments’ on Wednesday, on Thursday I really struggled to stay motivated at work and when I came home I sat and watched television (I never do that!), I just really felt out of sorts.   Then on Friday I woke up with a humdinger of a headache and was really sick, all day long.  I stayed in bed but every time I moved threw up,  Obviously I didn’t make it to work, I’m supposed to phone in and let them know if I’m not going to be at work, but I just couldn’t manage the phone or even to tell my husband to phone for me.  So I’m probably going to be in trouble tomorrow…

I’ve had this problem before and, by a process of elimination, I think I am beginning to work out what the cause is.  I used to think it was a problem with my neck, but I now think that because I have a weakness in my neck that’s where the pain tends to go.  The bottom line is, I think I need to change my diet.  It’s got to be worth a try because being sick like that really knocks me for six!

I’ve been reading a lot recently, obviously Dr Amy Johnson‘s new and previous books and other similar works about how our thinking shapes our personal world and that our default setting is always well-being.  It was comforting to me, while I was feeling so unwell, to know that my body was just working through some issues and eventually I was going to be OK.

Yesterday I was still feeling washed out but I did manage to get out for a walk and I did some easy art (shown above) in my altered book journal.  I’m not that impressed with the result to be honest, but art is always good therapy so I’m sharing it anyway.

I started off with gesso’d pages, stuck old dictionary pages over them (these can no longer be seen), then I painted them turquoise – I didn’t mean to paint the whole spread that colour but the paint tube was blocked and when I managed to unblock it I got far more paint out than I really needed, then I used some foam stamps to stamp over the turquoise with orange acrylic and gesso, a Crafters Workshop stencil called paint lids to add the purple and a Tim Holtz reflections stamp to add some word texture.  The girl is cut from a magazine advert and then painted over (I am still really rubbish at faces and hair) and I put images of the universe into her glasses. On the left hand side of the page I did some image transfers, but they didn’t work out at all, so I gesso’d over them and then painted over with green acrylic.  I used joint tape as a stencil to add the hatching, printed out the quote (I don’t know who to attribute the quote to) sprayed it with blue and yellow spray inks, ripped out the words and stuck them down, I highlighted the wording with a white pen. Finally edged the page with black and orange Stazon ink.  That’s it.

Have a good week and I’ll see you soon.

Big love

AJ 🙂

 

 

 

© Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal, 2013 unless otherwise stated. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

We are the Architects of our own Happiness

We are the architects of our own happiness

 

Hello friends

I just felt like getting messy with some paint, so I got out my old, mixed media journal which I started in June 2012.  It’s a proper book that I am altering, mainly because I don’t like the wire binding in the other journals I’ve used for mixed media.  I like doing double page spreads and wire binding distracts from the whole image .  When I first started this altered book I ripped out half of the pages and gessoed the remaining pages, leaving some of the illustrations showing through.  It was a book about shells that I picked up in a charity shop and I’ve since seen several copies of the same book, so I don’t feel bad about transforming it into something else.

This page was already started.  I can’t remember the entire process but there are pages from an old book on English architecture, handmade papers, Zettiology stamps (purchased from Teesha Moore), red and pink paint, an image transfer, spray inks, distress inks and a quote hand printed onto ordinary paper sprayed with inks.

I’ve been reading a lot recently about how despite what we may think, our happiness is not dependent upon external factors like possessions or how we look, it’s simply a choice that we make for ourselves.  So I’m choosing to be happy and I hope you are too 🙂

See you soon

Big love

AJ 🙂

 

 

COPYRIGHT

© Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal, 2013, unless otherwise stated. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Wonder

Wonder

Hello friends

Wow, summer is really here now, it’s scorching hot!  I hope you are enjoying lovely weather too where ever you are.

So that’s the Ryde Arts Festival over with for another year.  Well not really we still have to have meetings to discuss what went right and what went wrong and how we can improve for next year, and then the planning meetings and hopefully some workshops throughout the year until next summer.  I have enjoyed it and I received some lovely feedback about my personal art which is a bonus.

I spent today sitting at the Depozitory from 12:30 to 4pm but only had a few visitors partly I think because of the glorious weather, many people just headed for the beach, and partly because of the Wimbledon finals.  I am sure that everyone is delighted that Andy Murray won.

This week I finally managed to find a little time to do some art journaling in my altered book. This is a quick page I created with the theme of Wonder.   The quote is by Helen Keller and (in case you can’t read it) says “The infinite wonders of the universe are revealed to us in exact measure as we are capable of receiving them”.  It’s a bit different to the pages I’ve been posting recently and it felt good to be doing some mixed media and layers again.  I hope you like it. 🙂

Short post tonight because it’s T’s Birthday and I have to pop down to the local Indian restaurant to collect his Birthday dinner.

I won’t be posting mid week this week because I am going to London to give a speech at a conference on Wednesday and won’t get home until late.  Hopefully I will be back next weekend and in the meantime I hope you have a lovely and rewarding time.

Big love

AJ 🙂

 

COPYRIGHT

© Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Janette Gregson and ajsartjournal with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Home, a place of safety

 

Home, a place of safetyHello friends!

I hope you are all well and happy.  I have had a busy weekend.  Yesterday I had to make myself go and do the voluntary work in the cemetery, it was hard because I knew RoseMarie wouldn’t be there, but I also knew it’s what she would want me to carry on.  It was a lovely sunny morning and my friend Kate came to join me and we spent a pleasant couple of hours recording inscriptions from some of the memorials.

In the afternoon I went shopping, I was hoping to be able to buy some old National Geographic magazines cheap from one of the charity shops, but I couldn’t find any 😦  However in one of the charity shops I did find a rather fabulous scrap book of newspaper cuttings someone (unknown) made in the 1930s, I probably spent more than I should have done on it, but I couldn’t resist!  In the same shop I also got some good artist brushes for a bargain price.  Well you can never have too many brushes can you?

It is now 6:30 pm and this is the first time I’ve sat in front of my computer today.  I had to resist switching it on because I had chores to do today.  I got up early this morning and started to clear out and tidy up the cupboard under the stairs.  Eventually we intend to move the washing machine in there to free up some space in the kitchen.  It’s hard to believe that so much stuff could be crammed into such a small space.  I was ruthless and threw of lot out!  When my husband got up (much later than me) we spent time working out how we are going to deal with the plumbing and then we went to a big DIY store to buy the materials we will need.

It was too late to start by the time we got back so I went to see Mum and Dad, who are both fine, and I’ve just got back from that visit.

This image above is a single page from my A4 size journal and was done fairly quickly (I guess you can tell that) as part of the Fall Fearless and Fly challenge:

Headline prompt: Security, what makes you feel safe and secure? What rattles your sense of security? Where do you go for comfort and refuge?

Color prompt: Cool colors (blues, greens, violets, etc)

Quote prompt: You can’t make a place for yourself in the sun, if you keep taking refuge under the family tree. Helen Keller.

Well, my home and my art room make me feel safe and secure so that’s where I go for comfort.  I managed to get my two cats into the image, but not my husband, he is probably around the back of the house tending to the garden, either that or he is upstairs haveing a nap 🙂  By the way my house is not as big as the one depicted on the page.

I’m not sure who to attribute the quote I used to, I have seen several similar quotes attributed to different people, but nevertheless it is what I feel about home.  I feel that I ruined it with the terrible writing, but never mind…

Have a good week everyone and I’ll be back soon.

Big love

AJ 🙂

Focus on the Journey

Focus on the JourneyCLICK ON THE IMAGE TO ENLARGE

Hello friends!

I hope you have had a great weekend, mine has been OKish.  I woke up with a horrible headache on Saturday morning and that kept me in bed all morning.  I finally managed to get rid of it and at lunch time I got up to make myself some toast.  The phone rang and my husband told me it was a friend wanting to speak to me.  I groaned as I really didn’t feel like talking to anyone but he had already told her he would get me so I answered the call.  Then I was hit by a bombshell, I was told that another friend had collapsed and died that morning.  It was completely unexpected, I had only seen her the previous Saturday when she came and volunteered in the cemetery with me, helping to record inscriptions from the memorials.  She has been helping me do this for several years.  In all that time I hadn’t really got to know her that well as she was a very private person, but gradually she began to open up and chat, especially when it was just the two of us working together.  She was a kind, caring, thoughtful soul who did much to help other people.  The last time I saw her she cheerily said “See you in a couple of weeks”.  As far as I know she had not been ill and her death was sudden and unexpected, she was only in her early 70s.

Rest in peace Rosemarie, dear kind soul, I will think of you and miss you every time I go into the cemetery to work.  The work you did will be appreciated by many people from all across the world who carry out research into their ancestors from our town.

She has been on my mind a lot ever since I heard, I had to phone several other people to impart the sad news and then I spent the rest of the time working on my art which has helped me to stay grounded.

The page above is from my A4 journal and was completed in August.  I used  pieces from an old cycling map as the background and then gave it a wash of watered down gesso and acrylic paint.  The bicycles in the bottom r/h corner were an image transfer.  The image and quote on the left hand page I found on the internet and it made me smile as I can imagine how precarious it was to ride a pennyfarthing bike.  The photograph of the girl is me aged about 18 on a bike ride in Nepal.  I stamped on the page with a Tim Holtz reflections text stamp and a number stamp.  I think I probably used Portfolio water soluable oil pastels to edge the page.  The quote sums up what I feel about art journaling – the process is more important than the end result – It’s All Good even if it’s not always good art 🙂

Have a good week my friends and I will see you soon.

Big love

AJ 🙂

How Sweet the Moonlight

How Sweet the Moonlight

Hello friends

I hope you are having a great weekend, it’s sunny Sunday here in my part of the world and tomorrow is a bank holiday – yay!

This spread is from my 6 x 6 journal, I started by covering the pages with scraps of paper and ephemera, then added paint and inks.  The swirly stamp is one I got free with a magazine.  I did some embossing and added the quote which is from the Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare.  Shakespeare is supposed to be England’s finest writer, but unfortunately I was turned off him when I was at school.  We had to study Julius Caesar for an examination and the teacher got us to read some parts of it out loud in class.  I remember her shouting at me “Say it with feeling!”.  The trouble was I had no idea what I was reading, it was like a foreign language to me.  I think maybe a bit of instruction and explanation would have helped, shouting at me certainly didn’t!

I am going to try and keep up with my blog over the next couple of weeks, but Heritage Open Days starts on 6 September and there are still many things to sort out, so I may have to take a bit of time out.  We can get into the venue, an old church, next Saturday morning and then we have 5 days to clean and tidy the place up, transport and set up a huge exhibition ready for the opening at 11am on Thursday 6 September.  It’s going to be great but it is also going to be a lot of hard work.

If I disappear for a while please understand, I will still be trying to do bits and pieces of art when I can.

Big love

AJ 🙂

You are Here

You are Here

Hello friends!

This is probably the most summery weekend we have had all year and I’ve been stuck inside working away on my computer preparing stuff for the history exhibition in September.  Never mind, at least I didn’t get sunburnt and at least it is nice to look out the window and see bright light.

The image above is just a single page from my A4 journal.  I used quite a lot of ripped up map for the background so I thought You Are Here was an appropriate quote.  The criss-cross lines I made by inking up a wheel from toy car and running it across the page.

On Tuesday I have to go for an interview at work so that, in 30 minutes, my competencies can be assessed and then I think I will just be slotted into a job where they (senior managers and HR) think I will fit best.  It’s all a bit strange really especially as I have already applied for a post that was advertised internally but that’s not what they are interviewing me for.  Anyway I have decided that I just need to do some preparation, go along, do the best I can, not get too anxious about it and try to enjoy the experience.  I’ll let you know how I got on next time I post.  I think it must be quite a tough interview because the 5 managers I work with have already been through the process and 3 of them have not been reappointed to their roles.  I already know I am not going to be reappointed to my role as it is disappearing into vapour in the restructure, but I will definitely still have a job.  So there is definitely something new for me just around the corner.  Exciting or what!

OK I am going to drag myself away from the computer now and the many things that I am supposed to be doing and I’ll go and see if Mum and Dad want to come out for a drive and an icecream.

See you later

Big love

AJ 🙂

 

Ha, ha, ha!

 

Disorderly

Hello friends

It’s Wednesday and it’s still sunny, so I think we are now enjoying summer, I hope it lasts a few weeks at least.  It is so lovely, warm and bright.

You are probably wondering why I have posted my image upside down, but in fact it is the right way up, it’s just the quote that is the wrong way up.  I really liked this background.  It started off as a page in my journal where I cleaned off rubber stamps and stencils so it had lots of random words, letters and shapes on it.  I collaged some vintage foreign ripped book pages, scraps of paper and some papers I had used to protect my work surface when spraying onto another spread.  I added some colour with Inktense blocks on it  and edged the pages with black watersoluable oil pastels.  I really liked seeing all the layers so I thought I would just add a quote.  I found this great quote attributed to A A Milne and I liked it because I am a very disorderly person.  My OCD husband simply does not understand how I can work in my room surrounded by so much clutter and mess 😉  I used a new set of alphabet stamps I purchased and happily started stamping out the quote, I was pleased when I finished the first page, but I had just started the second page when I noticed the stitch I used to hold the feathers in place on my Follow Your Dreams page, then I realised that all the words were upside down!  Well it was too late to do anything about it so I carried on.  So should anyone look through my journal they will come to a page that looks like this.  I guess that’s a happy accident.

At work we are undergoing yet another restructure in the function I work for so lots of things will change soon.  I don’t know what’s going to happen with my job, but I have seen the new structure and my team does not appear on it.  I do know that at the end of it I will still have a job but at the moment I just don’t know what it will be.  The last time they did this to me I nearly cracked up, they put me in a role that I was totally unsuited for and still expected me to do all the duties in my old role, even though they said that role didn’t exist any more!  Tomorrow I have to go to a meeting where I may find out a bit more.  I am a bit more chilled out these days so I will just wait and see what they say.  Lots of people throughout the whole company are worried for their jobs and I don’t think this is going to much for staff morale, we’ll see.

Anyway I hope you like my ‘upside down’ spread.

See you soon

Big love

AJ 🙂