I'm a guest blogger at Stencil Girl!

What a hoot it was to complete a journal project using three Stencil Girl stencils in a journal spread!  Have you heard that I love to art journal?  What I love about working in a book is the  non-preciousness and freedom to just have fun making marks and playing with color.  There are no mistakes.  I’m a big fan of inspiring words, so those will often find their way into my pages, giving me much needed reminders when I page through the book at a later time.

I’m so thrilled to create this journal spread for you, using 3 of Stencil Girl’s wonderful stencils:
L301  Circles Circles by Traci Bautista
L091  Dots and Dashes by Jessica Sporn
S400  Military Stars by June Daley

Okay….let’s get started…..

I started my pages with some gesso, haphazardly scraped across the pages with a credit card.  I purposefully left some parts of the page uncovered.  When the gesso dried, I spritzed Adirondack color wash in Butterscotch all over the spread, and quickly watered it down with a soaking brush, moving the ink all over the surface.  I blotted the surface with paper towels, leaving a lovely variegated pattern behind.  Next, I scribbled with a Stabilo All pencil, happily and randomly moving my hand around.  I love making marks!

Next, I brushed matte varnish over the lines I had drawn, causing them to activate and smear a little bit.  I do this for two reasons.  One, I just love the way the lines look when they smear and blur.  Two, the matte varnish acts as a fixative for the pencil lines, keeping them in place, so they don’t muddy up future layers on the page.

While the pencil lines dried, I turned my attention to the first stencil, Dots and Dashes.  I sponged a dark turquoise onto some deli paper.  I LOVE deli paper, don’t you?  Its transparency when I use it as collage material is a blast!

When the pencil lines dried, I started filling in shapes with color.  I am not a purist when it comes to paint.  I love it all!  From Golden to craft paint, I use it all!  When painting in my shapes, I am again being haphazard.  I love how some of the pencil lines are obscured when I go over them with the paint, but others remain strong dark marks when I avoid the lines.  It’s up to you how careful or carefree you want to be with this step.

After laying down some color, I pulled out my Circles Circles stencil and decided to add some texture to a few areas with a reductive technique.  I painted a light turquoise over the dark.  When that paint was almost dry, I placed the stencil right on top of the paint, and rubbed through the stencil with a damp baby wipe.  This left a really cool “ghostly” effect to that area. 

I did some more scribbling with Neocolor pastels, and added more texture to the page by pressing tissue and paper towel into wet paint. 

With my Stabilo All pencil, I scribbled through the Military Stars stencil randomly throughout the page, and then added some paper collage elements.  I decided on a quote a friend shared with me….a lyric from a song she loves.  It seemed the perfect sentiment for the light spot on the page.

And here is the completed spread!  A crazy, scribbly, patchwork-y burst of happy thoughts….from me to you! 
Thanks so much for joining me today, I hope you had fun!  Big thanks to MaryBeth Shaw and the gang at StencilGirl for this fun challenge!  

See you in Edina!!!

Hello beautiful Minnesota people!!!  I'm coming to see you in Edina!
This Saturday and Sunday, September 9th and 10th, at the Edina Fall into the Arts Show.  The show is located in the lovely Centennial Lakes Park.  I LOVE the Twin Cities!  So excited to visit again!  Come see me and the hubby at booth #353.  Free hugs!!!  Click HERE for more show specifics!  See you soon!