The Journey

The JourneyHello friends!

I hope you are having a good week.  Mine is going fine.

For this spread in my 6×6 journal I started with a page that had some horrible dark green paint on it and the opposite page had dabs of pink ink.  Not a great combination!   I collaged copies of old maps and papers from the Papermania Bookprint collection onto the pages.  I coloured them with Inktense blocks and water.  Where I had used Mod Podge to stick the papers down it acted as a resist to the colour – a nice effect.  I finger painted the whole spread with an ‘eggyolk’ yellow acrylic paint and then added the circles by stamping brown acrylic paint using bottle caps.  I thought it needed some contrast so I stencilled blue acrylic paint through punchinella and a big dot stencil.  Finally I added the words using brown Stazon and a set of tiny letters I purchased at Hobbycraft a while ago.

Making the spread was a bit of a journey, I had no idea where I was going with it when I started and I wasn’t sure where I was when I finished.  It was good fun though 🙂

Enjoy the rest of your week.

Big love

AJ 🙂

Cycles and Circles

Circles within CirclesHello friends,

Happy Wednesday!

21 Secrets started on Sunday and I am so excited, there is so much choice I really don’t know where to start.  At the moment I am just browsing before I make a decision.  The playground is open for 9 months which seems like a long time, but it will soon fly by.  In three months last year I only managed to do about 4 of the workshops, so realistically I will probably only complete half of what is on offer this year so I need to choose wisely.

The weather is still sunny here in the UK but not as warm as it was last week.  It’s going to be a huge shock when it eventually rains as I can’t remember the last time that happened.  I hope it’s not until after the weekend as we have a four day break this weekend for the Easter holidays.

The spread above is from my 6 x 6 journal and was created after I watched a YouTube video on circle fractals, unfortunately I can’t remember the name of the video now and I can’t find it again.   But when I was doodling one day I thought I would give it a go and I really enjoyed it.  After I had drawn all the circles I coloured them with my inktense pencils and when they were dry added the white dots and finally the words.

Hope all is good with you

Big love


Writing in the Round

Hello Friends

I hope everyone is well.  I am feeling much better and only had one day off work.  My husband is now poorly but not with the same thing.  He’s had a few days off work and has suffered much more than I did.  Hopefully we will both be back on track again soon.

The spread above is from my 6×6 (handbag size) journal.  I still don’t feel comfortable writing in my journals so I thought I would practice my lettering. I painted gesso in a spiral on the pages so that some parts were left without gesso and then I used Inktense block over the top to create the background.

I drew the ‘true love’ flowers in the middle and then started to write – from the inside out on the first page and the outside in on the second page.  I coloured the petals of the flowers with glitter pen so they sparkle, and drew the wobbly border all around – et voila!

Not much else to say really and I need to get on with my scanning of old photographs.   So far I’ve scanned and cleaned up 11 photos, only about another 100 to go!

Hope you all are having fun

Big love


Be the Star that You Are!

Hello friends!

This is about self-confidence, something I’ve struggled with for a lot of my life.  I have to say it has got easier as I’ve got older and this is a reminder to myself, that actually, I am OK, some of the things I do are pretty good and have value.  I need to stop listening to the negative voices and start paying attention to the positive ones.

The base for this spread is gesso which I textured and made waves in, with the wrong end of a paintbrush, then there are layers of acrylic paint and scrapbook paper, gesso’d and painted over again.   The star and letter stamps were cheap foam stamps, I wanted the lettering to look big and bold, but it was far too black after I had done it so I cut out some more scrapbook paper to accent and tone down the letters, then I tore some handmade (not by me) transculent paper and stuck over the top of parts of the spread.  I coloured in some of the areas with Inktense water colour to just give some highlights too.

Right now I am really busy, my history group has it’s AGM this coming Saturday and I have to give the annual report on the many activities and successes we have had in the past year, so there’s a bit of preparation to do for that.  Also I am going to visit a friend in LA in a week’s time, and I have to get packed and ready for that trip too.  I have prepared a little travel journal to take with me so hopefully when I get back I will have filled it with doodles, journaling and interesting stuff I’ve collected on the way.

I hope you are all doing fine and shining like the stars you are too.

Big love

AJ 🙂

I’m so happy!

I have actually completed my very first journal.  I am only about a third of the way through sharing it on my blog, but it is actually complete and I love it.  I am now working on several other projects – five journals and a mini book made from envelopes, plus some boxes and various other bits and pieces I am altering.   There are other things I really should be doing but I am becoming addicted to creating and collecting useful stuff!

Anyway here is a sneek peak at the completed journal.

Big love

AJ 🙂

Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try

Every accomplishment startswith a decision to tryThis page came out a bit different.  In one of those pound shops I found a die cut set of the alphabet, unfortunately the letters are BIG, but after I had pushed out all the letters I decided to use the cardboard blank as a stencil to outline the letters.  I used a lot of different paper for the background of this spread, and I am beginning to realise that I have a passion for paper of all kinds.

I’m happy with this spread and I like the sentiment – I should try more things…

Big love


The Journey

Page 16Page 17This spread combines two passions – art & history.  I wanted the pages to have an aged and vintage look.  The background for both pages are old maps, the first page has an old map of London and the Thames and the second page has a very ancient map (a copy) of the island where I live.  The collage images are my attempt to give depth to the pages, while also prettying them up, the piece in the corner of the second page is an extract from a story I found on Google Books.  Sketches of a pedestrian in the Isle of Wight was published in the New Monthly Magazine in 1816 and tells of a walking holiday on the Isle of Wight at a time when there were few roads and many of the small towns, villages and hamlets were fairly isolated.   The story is serialised in the magazine over a number of months but unfortunately is not complete.  I have transcribed all of the episodes that were in a magazine to put into a folder for my local history group.

I realised a few days ago that some of the images in recent post has been resized incorrectly when I saved them for the web.  The images look a little ‘squarer’ than they should do, but as I didn’t notice for a while I won’t be resizing them.  In future though I will keep the pages to the correct dimensions.

Big love


French Connection

I do have a French connection, one of my brothers married a French girl and they live near Paris with their family.  I’ve never visited France though even though I always love to see my brother and his family when they visit England.  We had French lessons when I was at school, but I didn’t get on with it very well so I can’t even speak basic French, I’m a typical Brit and can only speak English!  Shame on me, my brother and his family are all bi-lingual.

This spread came about because I wanted some script on my pages and I haven’t got a script rubber stamp.  I found this hand written letter in French on the internet and then found images that I thought would compliment it.  For the background I used various shades of blue acrylic and water colour and stamped over it with white ink.   I don’t think you can see it online, but the lady from the Folies Bergeres was coloured in with glitter pen and on the page she really sparkles.  I quite like the effect but I think I need to try and find a way to lighten my pages, they all look too dark to me.

Make my dreams come true

Today is another chance

I’m not sure if the image of the Gold Dust Twins is really politically correct so just wanted to say I mean no offence, I had never seen this American advertising before, it’s from the late 1800s/early 1900s, and I just liked the image of the two children juggling the plates.

I’ve been watching lots of YouTube and Ustream videos made about mixed media and art journals and I am blown away by the talent and creativity of so many people, they are really inspiring.  However I have become aware that watching these videos is also making me want more and more things, I’ve been thinking “I’ve got to have this and I’ve got to have that, how can I do art journaling if I haven’t got all these things”.  But now I’ve decided that I really need to try and be creative with what I’ve got, and use what’s around me or what I can find.  I have a few paints, stamps, papers, pens and a few basic masks and stencils so I will just have to make do with those until I can get to a decent craft store (there isn’t one anywhere near where I live) or go online when I can afford to buy stuff.  I will have to buy more gesso fairly soon but apart from that my challenge to myself is ‘Let’s see what you can do with what you’ve got’.

This spread uses a Tim Holtz mask I purchased, some advertising images from the web, a white paper border I found in my craft box, some acrylic and water colour paints.