scrappystickyinkymess


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Gloss sprays and something crazy – yep, I cut a stamp…

I made a page using the gloss sprays – my first one.

This is in my thin-page brown paper bag journal – it only has a few pages left to complete it so I thought I would do a page in it. The gloss spray is not great on the brown paper, but I added some yellow stars and that worked pretty well to lighten it up at least a bit

I added some figures cut from Collage Collective papers, then I did a crazy thing – I cut one of my expensive red rubber stamps. Yep. I really, really did. This asemic writing stamp has on section of very small text on it – not only is it repeated elsewhere on the stamp, it sticks out and (to me) ruins the look of the whole stamp if you want to stamp it repeatedly to, say, fill a space. So i got the sharpest, smallest scissors I had and, snip, snip, snip…

The unseen benefit was that the tiny bit of text was both small and quite straight, and it worked really well to use to stamp the asemic writing along the edge of the figures. This is a look I really like, but I am still at the stage where I think my own attempts at this scribbly writing will end up ruining a page I otherwise like. I am practicing but just not there yet! The stamp works OK to get the look in the meantime:

See how neatly it travels along the edge? I think alternating the orientation of the stamp will make it look less repetitive, but overall, I am pretty happy with it! And so, my 100 days page – getting so close to 50 now I can taste it ….


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A hard fought art journal page…

I had a page on my desk and things were NOT going well. I got there in the end, but because it was such a struggle (at one point I literally wiped away a whole bunch of paint to start again from the last drying point) I took virtually no photos. Ah well. Here is the page:

I wish I had maybe left the middle of my guy’s face a little more bare, but the fronds were the dried layer, and the point where I was happy. What I wiped away was a large stenciled face:

that just did not work at all. I played around with a couple of other stamps as well, none of which worked either.

I tried to wedge in some collage collective bits, and didn’t like them either. While the leafy frond stencil might look a bit like the (discontinued) Dina stencil that is similar, this is my own version, cut YEARS ago from heavy card and still very usable.

So it’s a weird thing. I joined a FB group for Dina Wakely products. I posted my page from yesterday and apparently I ran afoul of the single rule of the group: If you use a Dina product (and you must or they delete your post) you have to SAY what the thing you used was, if it isn’t obvious. On that page what I used was the asemic writing stamp, within the blue circles. As I was feeling a little playful, I mentioned in my post that I had used a Dina product, it was subtle, guess what it was…One of the moderators slapped me down on that, referenced the rule and said I had to say, not ask them to guess, or my post would be removed. I was ok with that, cause I know how blinkin’ hard it is to moderate a forum (or a FB community) and added the info as soon as I saw the comment, but it really reminded me of a simple fact – FB pages like that one are not really about the people on there sharing their work. They are about both providing inspiration by sharing work using a specific set of products, and getting people to see the possibilities of those products. Equally (more so?) they are about promoting the designer and ultimately about product sales. Which is fine, I get it. But I think how it all ties together with THIS post is that I tried 3, no 5 different Dina products in an effort to finish my page. WHY? So I could share it not only here, but there as well, and not get slapped down, I guess. Well, that’s stupid. No doubt, I am a fan of Dina’s style. And I like her products. But I cannot fall into the trap of thinking that I have to force something DW into every page I do, just so I can share it someplace other than here. That makes my pages less about me and makes me more a shill than an artist (gosh, even typing that makes me feel like a pretender. Working on that….)

In the end my own stencil worked far better on this page than the original one. And my own leafy frond worked every bit as well as the stencil I have looked for and cannot find. I am now officially stopping my search. I did try something with another Dina product, just cause it was out on my desk from a different try – the tissue paper words.

Some of the little text snippets are good, they often resonate with me pretty strongly. But I am never keen on using them cause they really disappear into the background, and my backgrounds are usually pretty chaotic. But applying the tissue with gel medium over white or cream card turns them into something far more usable for my style (the no-white-space-left-behind style LOL!) and worked well on this page. I will do this again, I am sure.

So in the end, I think it was a valuable lesson to learn. Will I share it “over there?” Probably – I’ve satisfied the terms & conditions so I might as well. But I am going to be a little more critical in my choices in the future. After all this is MY art journal. The stuff I buy to use when making a page should not be the driving force, my own thoughts and words should be. Will be.

Now day 23! Next milestone is day 30, or ONE MONTH of the 100 days:

I am coming down to the end of those crackle letters (SO old) and I needed to trim them to make them fit. I added the little snippets in a few places, just cause I didn’t want to throw them away. Also I am at the end of my trimmed number tickets. I used both of the 21, 22 and 23 tickets at some point in the past and I was NOT going to buy a whole new book so those three were 121, 122 and 123 trimmed down. Now I think I am golden for 24-100! I am also branching out, having found other sorts of journaling spots other than the tiny notebook. It’ll add a bit of variety for a bit.

Phew. That got long. Sorry.


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Another AJ page – paper dolls!

I am always excited when I use something new for the first time, but more so when I use something I bought over a month ago and am just using. Here is the first page using one of the TH paper dolls:

I did a better (but still crap) job of photographing my steps. To be honest I am not sure anyone cares LOL! But my memory is shit so I do it as much for me as anyone. I started simple enough, with a bit of paint and the brayer to spread it. Then I smeared a little gesso with my fingertip

Then I got all into the stenciling and the stamping. I caught the striped edge stencil then…nothing

and before you know it…

I mentioned this little roller tool before – well, I mentioned I used the zig-zag one but couldn’t find THIS one. I did. They are both from a kids PlayDoh set and better than a credit card to make lines, as you can roll the line right up the page. It looks lovely IRL with the fine liquid gold ink lines. The wings are stamped and embossed in gold on gold-speckled tissue paper, so it all ties together:

I love this quote. I saw it in a downloadable pdf from Stampington. I think I have tried to share these before but as they came to me in an e-mail the links never seemed to work. I’ll give it another go a different way and see…. I googled the text but am not coming up with an attribution. No matter, it’s a good one for creative blocks.

My next 100 days page:

I am being mindful of the placement, so the bulk of the collage stack is not always in the middle. I have always shifted the focus around the page, but never so far to the inside edge! Maybe it’ll help. We’ll see.


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Art journal page – and a ripped clear stamp repair

I broke out a new-ish set of stamps to play with and had a LOT of fun with them. I had used a bit of one of the collage collective sheets of a bunch of circles on one of my single pages, but only two of them (although I punched another one out, I never used it) and had the rest of the page left. I had a go at stamping over the circles with the foliage stamp and even with the gaps of white between they still worked out pretty well! Three columns of circles, three fronds.

Here is the page – I was having fun creating so I didn’t take photos. I really must remember to do that.

I also used a stamp by Effy Wild (the Wild and Free one) and an old set of Autumn Leaves stamps. Quite annoyed that the E clear stamp ripped as I was trying to peel it off the backing. Honestly, so many of my cling mount stamps have had issues – the sticky goes and cannot be revived, the silicone deteriorated and the stamp crumbles and rips…just very annoying. Yes, I know these are cheaper than proper red rubber stamps (both cling mounts and wood-mounts) but you still expect them to last for more than a few years! I managed to “repair” it by sticking a bit of the red-line tape on the back, the sticky side holding the rip together, the backing left on. You can see it here, I hope.

The important thing is it still clings

and because of the nature of the letters, with the grungy edges, it still stamps well, especially over a chaotic background like the collage collective, but well enough to use on plain card:

Good thing, too, as it’s one of the most used letters in the alphabet. Worth remembering as a repair tip. Not helpful for super intricate or detailed stamps, but works well for ones like this.

And lastly, my next 100 days page:

Seems like my handwriting is degrading again, but overall I think I am happier sticking to black and brown ink. Note I used those magnetic stamps from the other day as well. Woo hoo!


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A delivery! Sidetracked…

I’ll begin with my next 100 days page:

Like it. Maybe not LOVE it, but like it.

I ordered a few Dina things I had trouble finding (a couple of old stamp sets that I really wanted) and I had made a start on the other side of my single journal page, so when the delivery came I got totally sidetracked from my stamp re-org to finish that up.

I had started with some fairly standard stuff – white gesso and some tissue collage

and topped that with some texture paste and then various bits of colour – old Distress Stain and some of the LIDL acrylic spray in a teal. A little spatter, a little drippage and

I grabbed a sheet from the Collage Collective and punched a few circles

And then stamped, painted and cut out some different circles and cut a couple of that pebble die I am loving so much

It all came together like this!

Colour-wise it could not be more different to the companion page

but what ties them together is the use of circles and the text – one side says We all have a story to tell and the next page says Spilling my story. So while they are very much NOT a matched pair, they go better together than I thought they might.

Tomorrow is hubby’s birthday and all I will do is share my 100 days page. Likewise on Sunday, when I will take a day off for a while. My darling daughter starts in-person school on Monday and I am a little anxious about it. And because we will then have to keep our distance in the house (I’m still shielding till the 31st, or until a week after my 2nd dose of the vaccine) it is going to be a day full of Mom+Daughter time. What time I do have will be (hopefully) spent on my stamp re-org. I am determined to get that done before WOYWW.


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A FUGLY art Journal page – naughty word warning!

If bad language offends you don’t click thru! As I say to my daughter, I use bad language sometimes. I’m not going to stop.

This quote is one that has been rattling around in my head for a while. I kept it there, in my back pocket, ready fro a truly ugly art journal page. Yeah. This is it.

The quote is not one you will find by Googling. It is a quote from a live event with Kevin Smith (he is the Jay and Silent Bob guy from Clerks) discussing a film I mention often, The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension. It always struck me as a perfect explanation for any kind of art that people say But IS it art, REALLY? It’s art if the artist says it’s art. Is it GOOD art is a totally different question LOL!

This is a case of me beginning with my crappy junk journal. I have a handful of pages in this, maybe even the majority of them, that I really, really like, and I kinda wish they were in a better journal. But they aren’t.

I do love the weight of the pages, although some I glued together, just to keep it from being too triangular, and gaping open! The whole thing began nice enough…

I had an idea to add what I heard SOMEPLACE called a “carrot person” (either BY Dina Wakley or by someone talking about her oddly shaped people) and the bit of a mask you see there is the body. It began life as a digitally altered image of the Venus de Milo

and the carrot is made up of a Teesha Moore stamped head and some packaging from Japan.

And from there I just kept throwing things at it. It ALL stuck and none of it really made it better. It just increased the layers of crap, till I ended up with … this.

There are elements I like and a lot that I would like it it had been better executed. I had planned to use the little bit of text along the crown, that says Creativity is Mental Medicine, which in 2021 it certainly is! I will probably do another page with that at some point but for now I kinda think I need to recover from the horror above. I need to settle my artistic brain and clear it of too many outside influences and just play. And clean. My room is once again a bit of a tip. And it is half-term for my lovely daughter and she has a stacked queue of Netflix movies and Anime to share. Spending time with her is always, always a good thing.


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Final Tag book – all put together

I had fun making this – same sort of accordion construction I have done 100 times before, and I am sure everyone knows already. I attached the ribbon tie to the back of the book so it would wrap round.

Added the tags – I made the pages a little bigger so the tags would be framed nicely, yet the top would extend above the book so the ribbon and rik-rak would be free.

And the cover in place:

Just to save you looking back, here are al the tags in place. Some might have a few additions, like splatters, etc.

I have a really fugly art journal page that I may add. Not sure yet. I also have another box of stash coming and I may want to throw a little more onto the fugliness to see if it salvages it. Or not. I added a title that is pretty perfect for it so I may just share it as is. It is a cautionary tale…sometimes, more is crap. But is it ART?


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Interesting art journal technique – mask stamping

Once again, I’ll begin with the page and then tell you how I got there:

I’ll show it bigger at the end. I was looking at the page from yesterday and it was kinda a hot mess. No, that isn’t really right. I find that sometimes a large, close up photo of a page has a different impact than a more distance shot, with a little bit of breathing room around it. In any case, all the dark made me want to do a light and airy page. I decided to give myself a bit more space too – the problem with the junk journal is the pages are half-A4 size. Not huge. That’s fine for experiments, and two side by side pages equal A4, but I have maybe 10 pages (single sides) in my old paper bag journal and I was keen to finish it up. So I slapped on a bit of gesso at night so when I got to my desk in the AM it was dry and ready to go.

I began with some watercolours. Not my thing. My sister will remember gifting me a set of watercolours, goodness, 30+ years ago and me telling her Thanks, but no thanks. Shockingly ungrateful, I know. Anyway, I have gained a little more of an appreciation for them. I’m not GOOD at using them (YET) but playing with them is fun. The flowy, watery colour is different than even heavily watered down acrylic paint is.

Hard to tell, maybe, but this page is on the back of a page where I stuck a gel print that was on firmer cardstock. Can you see the defined edges of it? I grabbed another one of the circular masks, from the same set as yesterday and masked off with gesso. It was pretty insipid. You can kinda see it in the upper right corner below.

I also used my ink minis to stamp a bit of text and bits of the butterfly – a very old stamp but still a good ‘un. Then I had an idea. I liked the cascading foliage effect so I thought I could ink the back of the mask and use it as a stamp. I inked it with Versafine cause it was a juicy pad and stayed damp long enough for me to clean up the frame edges and still be able to stamp

Not rocket science, but when I tried it, the effect was…different that I expected. It had an almost ghost-print effect, not solid at all. And I had brayered over the mask to try to get the best contact I could.

The strange sketchy-ness of it was interesting. The brayer makes the mask skip about a little, so you get a slightly off double print. I really want to play with it more – I suspect it might give a different effect if I used the OTHER side of the mask – knowing stencils have distinct side, one being more smooth, I suspect this was the more rough side. I picked the side that matched the masking I had already done, which would have been, by default, the less flat side, if you follow my logic! Anyway, I inked and stamped (brayered) the mask on the page.

I like it!

Not perfect so far as placement, but no matter. I stamped the butterfly and coloured it with some purchased-but-never-used Lidl art supplies, watercolour pencils and markers, and aged it slightly with Old Paper distress ink.

Then back to my little text stickers to compose some words of wisdom to myself. 2021 is the year I push negativity to the side – it’s a battle, one I do NOT always win, but after a good 60 years of viewing the world as glass-half-empty, I hope I can be forgiven for taking a bit of time to accomplish that.

Perhaps a little cheerleader-y, maybe too much so? Or is it just my negativity, bleeding thru?

{sigh} It’s a challenge.


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Art journaling – more old and odd supplies

I am still doing my best to try to being old, languishing as unused, scrapbooking supplies to my art journal play. And am trying to do a few new techniques, maybe in a different way. I wanted to use the tags from the last play and some stencils I bought and not really used. Maybe because in fact they are masks more than stencils. Once again, I will begin with the actual page then tell you how I got there:

Let’s see. The mask is from a set I got from Wish. Again, super cheap. I used one on the (as yet unshared) intro page to my get-back-into-it experimental journal. I wanted to have another go at reductive painting but NOT using BLACK or WHITE. I decided on green. It worked OK.

This is the mask and the mop-up page I was working on.

I actually quite like this mask. The tricky bit was covering the whole page when the mask is circular and the page is not. Overall I think it worked OK.

It needed a pop of something and I opted for a very old technique, dragging a loaded fan brush along the edges of the page to create a thick border of, in this case, metallic copper acrylic ink. Hard to capture the method when you need three hands! My Android phone has a great app on it that lets me use both hands and then frame the shot and take the photo by saying CHEESE. The phone in my craft room doesn’t have that. Yet.

As you can see there are also spatters of copper added as well!

It dries really thick and dimensional, with a lovely shine. I took more things out of my “vintage” box and when I went to put it back on the shelf to grab another one, I found my baking tray full of magnetic poetry words. Those damn things always get knocked off the shelf, fall on the floor and because I have both nice, quality os and super cheap crappy ones, they fall off and scatter. Why am I holding on to them? They can now be used for text in my journal.

I played around with a few to make a little found poem. I also found some copper circles that worked well with my page

Back to the final page:

The text works with the rub-on words, Refresh and Renew, and the whole page makes me long for Spring and the chance of meeting up with ANYONE outside for a couple of hours, socially distanced, but especially a best knitting buddy. We Zoom, but it just isn’t enough! Ah well….. soon. Soon.


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Tag Play

I am trying to remember to make the first image the one that matters most. Seems weird to do it this way but I hear it is what people prefer. Who am I to argue? My final tags:

I was hunting thru some small drawer units and found my stash of cheap luggage tags and decided to have a play. I grabbed a selection of things to play with, including s limited colour palette of acrylic paint…

and a few more tools as well.

There is a RubberMoon stamp, a dip-pen, some cheap acrylic ink sprays from Lidl, some of my deli-paper masterboard, some ancient rub-ons, and a little tiny stapler from Tiger. THAT came in a little set tat cost me about £3, if I remember right – the Tiny Attacher is about £15. OK, to be fair it is more robust, and has a greater throat depth so you can staple further from the edge of whatever, but at that much higher price point. My tiny stapler worked great for what I was doing. The brush made me laugh – it’s from Lowes so it has to be at least 27 years old. The scraper is branded CRAYOLA, so also from when the kids were small. The LIDL spray is great, very richly pigmented, and I think the box of four was maybe £5 or so. Th spray nozzles clog quick but not if you clear them with water every time you finish a session using them. They work fab with the dip pen. Oh and also a scrap of plastic bag. I saw an artist on YouTube called Dan Tirels who paints entirely using plastic bags on some of his pieces. It amazed me. An ink pad and a pen. I started by swiping on some colour

then switched to the dry brush for the next colour

and finally had a go at stamping with the plastic bag.

I think the impact of that is hard to see but it is an interesting technique that bears exploring. Next, I stamped the swirl stamp, changing the orientation and placement

and then grabbed my big deli-paper masterboard thingie and chopped off a couple of strips to use for collage – I stack some bits on with glue and some I stapled with my tiny stapler. A few swipes and outlines with the dip pen and the Micron pen and…

Oh yes, forgot the rub-ons – no real rhyme nor reason to the selection of the placement. A close up here to save you scrolling back to the top:

I quite like them, and it was just the playful session I needed. Now I just need to figure a way to use them as a page focal point. But that is a play for another day.

After a hard week of early morning travel and a thumping headache from the fast infusion, I might just take the weekend off. This is my last pre-loaded post so if I go missing it’s just cause I am resting up and taking it easy for a bit.