Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Sparks Creative Arts Studio

I have been devoting my time to working with Suzanne McNeill and Rona Davis to spiff up Sparks Creative Art Studio in Arlington, TX. We are working on updating our social media, Rona is so informed on the subject of blogs, Facebook, Google Analytics....all stuff I find hard to keep up with. The most exciting part is scheduling some fabulous artists to teach classes and workshops at the studio. Currently we are working on the calender for January, February and March.

                                                                  'Feed the Birds'

We are offering Zentangle classes, jewelry workshops, watercolor and mixed media of all kinds. Having a local artist community is so important to us. The studio is right down the street from the Arlington Museum of Art and the city is revamping its entire downtown area. Perfect timing for highlighting the art community.


I am spreading the word... come visit us and spend some time with like-minded friends. learn some new techniques and make a resolution to devote more time to creative pursuits this year. You deserve it, and we would love to see you. You can visit the website, like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram. Subscribe to the newsletter on the Sparks Creative Arts website and receive new information every time we add a class.


Merry Christmas everyone, the art pictured today is some of the  Zentangle Inspired Art  I enjoy creating in an old book, using Microns and Inktense pencils for color.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Notans and Zentangle®

I am very happy to announce 'Zentangle 12' is out and available on Amazon, I loved working with Suzanne McNeill on this book. There is so much to explore with Notans and Zentangle.

 When I discovered Notan I was drawn to the beauty and simplicity of the process. Notan is the Japanese word for dark/light, the basic material used is black paper and white paper. My mind immediately went to the similarity of Zentangle and Notan, the basics of Zentangle are also simple materials and the beauty of black lines against white paper.

Zentangle 12 has a section on Notans as well as cut, torn and punched paper. It also incorporates cool new ways to make strings with ink and stencils, plus creating Zentangle Inspired Art on Clayboard and wood.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Bella Crafts Connection

What a wonderful time I had at Bella Crafts Connections. Not only did I have a chance to teach a couple of classes I found the time to take some classes too. Mixed Media classes with Seth Apter and a Gelli Print class with Cheryl Boglioli, I also got a chance to try out a new product with Cheryl called Powertex, it is a textile hardener. We used strips of old Tshirts to create fabulous textile art on a canvas. Powertex becomes so rigid it can even be used for outdoor it!

Mixed Media with Seth.

Gelli Prints with Cheryl.
I love that Cheryl gets to travel all over the United States in her beautiful trailer teaching art classes!
I had fabulous students in my classes, we had fun putting together our own Stash and Smash journals from cardstock, paper bags and envelopes. I am really lovin' cut and punched paper and showed them a few easy steps to creating gorgeous pages with Gelatos and  paper. Faber-Castell furnished some Gelatos for my class, it's one of my favorite art mediums. I was amazed at how creative everyone was, being inspired by my students is one of the reasons I love teaching. 

Stash and Smash Art Journals.

Journal page by Carole Rogotzke

Journal page by Susan Kolze

Journal page by Annie Frazier

Journal page by Barb Housner

Birds and more birds....I love quirky, cartoon images of birds. One of the classes I taught incorporated Zentangle® patterns with these whimsical bird figures.  Sakura was so helpful in sponsoring this class, they furnished little red pouches and Pigma Microns®  for all of my students. I am so thankful to them, nothing beats a Micron pen for tangling. The brilliant color for the birds was achieved with Inktense pencils, again Sakura furnished some of their Koi Water Brushes for the class to use. I prefer using a water brush for any art work I do with Inktense pencils or watercolor pencils, and they are fabulous for your art travel kit.

Barb and Annie drawing Quirky Birds.

 Annie's Bird

Thursday, September 17, 2015

More fun with Gelatos®

Just thought I would share some work done by some of my students at a recent Run with Scissors Play with Paint™ workshop I held at Sparks Studio of Creative Arts in Arlington, Texas. Love seeing what they can do with a little paper and a pair of scissors. Gelatos® by Faber Castell were used for the brilliant color.

   A fabulous journal page by Lynn Medlen, she added acrylic paint with stencils and punched paper.

                Suzanne McNeill used lots of great Gelato color and punched shapes to create the bird.

     Suzanne is planning a trip to Vietnam soon, I love her peaceful scene. Gelatos and black paper.
       Judy Evans used Gelatos and patterned paper to create her birds, complete with a nest of eggs.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Fun in the studio with the Grandgirls

One of my favorite things about art is how fun it is to share. A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to have 3 of my grandgirls together with me in the studio.

 Paula is about to go to college and wanted to create some art for the walls of her new apartment. She did some fabulous work. I introduced her to mid-century modern and she loved it. Here are her wonderful creations, they were inspired by Jenn Ski's books on Mid-Century Modern patterns.

16 x 20 canvas

                                      cardstock                                                              Watercolor paper 9 x 12

Sarah just loves, loves loves art in every medium. She also likes to do her own thing most of the time. Sarah also liked the mid-century modern style. She challenged me to create a piece featuring this fun bull (again from one of Jenn Ski's books). It was so enjoyable creating with her, choosing color combinations and paper punch outs for the embellishments on the bull. When she suggested putting a snail on the bull's back I was a little hesitant ...but we loved it!!

                                                           Sarah's bull and snail.

                                                                 My bull and snail.

                                          Sarah's abstract acrylic painting with paper cut-ups.
                                                                    16 x 20 canvas

Lyndsey has had a hard time of things lately, I had to talk her into just doing something...anything. She picked some favorite colors and painted stripes....beautiful in it's simplicity, and it made her happy! The black lines are drawn with oil pastel.

                                                                   8 x 8 Canvas

Share your art with someone, especially if you have children in your life. In fact I have decided anyone who walks into my studio must pick up a brush and apply paint to a canvas. Easel standing ready!!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Teaching at Bella Crafts Connections

Okay. it's kind of obvious I get to my blog about once a month. I have been longing for a website....I just didn't want to have to do it! One of my art friends is also a very knowledgeable computer/social media person. While I would have loved for her to do it....I bit the bullet and asked her advice on which one was the absolute easiest platform for me to use for a website. The winner Weebly, and it is fabulous, they have an hour video (I watched it 3 times), which covers everything you need. I recommend this site for everyone. Here is the link to and comments welcome.

One of the reasons I really needed a website is because I have begun teaching more. I have classes in July and August at a local studio Sparks Creative Arts Studio, owned by my friend and fabulous artist Suzanne McNeill. In September I am teaching at Bella Crafts Connections at the Mall of America in Minnesota. Lots of other wonderful teachers will be there as I will be teaching and of course taking some classes. Hope to see some of you there.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Journals, Gelatos and Paper Punches

I now have quite a collection of paper punches - circles in all sizes and a few squares too. I love using cut up and punched paper and have searched every nook and cranny in my studio to find all of my old paper. Using old paper for cut-ups in a junk journal is a fabulous way to repurpose paper you were never very fond of.

This pink paper with big lips has been in my stash a very long time, it works great for a dress for my paper doll and as a border on the adjacent page. The paper doll has been glued to an envelope in my junk journal that I stamped and colored with Gelatos. The sheet music page is actually a fold out with additional cut papers on the inside.

This is black cardstock and an old calender page in one of my junk journals. I love the simple beauty of the stark white and yellow on the black page. All I used was a few circle punches and a glue stick.

 The flower side of this journal page is a greeting card I gessoed, then used black paint to sponge on a stencil pattern and colored with Gelatos. The house journal page is a piece of poster board which had previously been used, I gessoed it - added a few stamps in Staz-On brown and colored with Gelatos. When I adhere paper to a surface which has been colored with Gelatos I use a liquid glue such as Elmer's Glue-All.

I have also been experimenting with cutting tools, next post I will give a few tips for how to use some of these tools to come up with fun and funky shapes.