Tuesday, February 20, 2018

it's ok to have a day job and still be an artist

I get asked a lot of questions but one of the questions I get asked the most is advice for quitting a day job in pursuit of working as a full time artist. While I totally support chasing after the dreams of being an artist, today wanted to share some different advice!

Monday, February 19, 2018

NEW class pastel blooms launches today!

My newest online class Pastel Blooms begins today! This was another fun one to create! Below is a little peek:

Launches February 19th

There is something so colorful and expressive about creating with pastels. In this class we will use my favorite subject: flowers, to explore a variety of wild and expressive ways to use pastels.
more information or to register HERE

All of my classes have unlimited access- once the class goes live you can create and access the class at any time and work at your own pace. There is no deadline or pressure to create.
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT SUPPLIES: This class like all of my classes, does NOT have a required supply list. Instead I will be sharing the supplies that I like to use and then give you a variety of options and inspiration to use supplies that work best for your process and your budget.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

creating with megan: block print lettering

Hi there! This is Megan from Makewells, and I’m here today with a super fun lettering tutorial. I’m going to show you how to take your lettering from pencil to print...block print that is!

Here’s what I used for this project:
  • Soft leaded pencil (4B or 6B)
  • Paper
  • Tracing Paper
  • Linoleum block (here)
  • Speedball Block Printing Starter Set (here) (includes brayer, ink, cutting tool, and linoleum block)
  • Speedball Water based Block printing Ink (here)

1.) To get started, draw the word or phrase you’d like to use, and then using tracing paper and a soft leaded pencil, trace the word very neatly.

2.) Place the tracing paper on the block, graphite side down, so that your lettering appears backwards. Then, using a flat object, such as the unsharpened end of a pencil, and rub gently over your design. Make sure you rub every area that has your design. When you remove the tracing paper, your design should be transferred onto your linoleum block.

3.) Now carve out everything but your lettering.  The starter set includes 3 sizes to carve with. I started with the wide tool and carved most of the block, avoiding the lettering. Once that was carved, I took the thin tool and carefully carved out the details. Once my entire design was carved out, I took scissors and cut away some of the excess block.

4.) Next, I laid a thin strip of speedball block printing ink across a flat surface, and then using my brayer, I rolled out an area until ink covered the entire brayer. Then, I rolled the brayer across my block print, making sure to cover my entire design.

5.) Lastly, I printed the design by laying it face down on my paper and pressing down firmly, but gently, making sure not to move the print. Then, I lifted it up off the paper and voila! There’s my print!


Monday, February 12, 2018

painted pant legs

Call me crazy but I love paint. I love it on the wall, I love it on canvas, I love it on paper and I even love it on my clothes! And while I end up with paint on my clothes after a creative session, I love messing around with simple ways to use paint to turn basic clothing into something funky! Lately I've been playing around with my pant legs...I know kind weird but I love that with a little paint you can transform a pair of pants into something totally unique.

I've found that the key to painting your clothing is use fabric paint and I prefer the Tulip Soft Matte Paints. They are washable, non toxic and once dry the paint is soft and moveable. 

I used a pair of black pants from Target. 

And then I added lots of layer of colorful brushtrokes just at the bottom the pant legs.

The result is super funky (and not for everyone) but I LOVE that a simple outfit can be transformed with lots of color and a little creativity!

Looking for some inspiration for altering that clothing?
Here are some of my favorites-


Wednesday, February 07, 2018

creating with a kid: abstract cardboard necklace

Lately I am loving the abstract jewelry trend that I am seeing out there. Lucy and I thought it would be fun to put our own twist on colorful statement necklaces but only use cardboard and paint!

Cardboard is actually a really versatile material, it can withstand lots of paint and it makes great jewelry because it is so lightweight.

We started by painting lots of messy layers of paint.

Lucy and I thought it would be fun to go for valentine themed surfaces so we used lots of pinks and reds and added little hearts and xo's.

We painted 2-3 layers on the front and back of our cardboard.

Once the paint was dry, we gave everything a quick coat of matte gel medium to seal the surface.

Then we cut up the cardboard into all kinds of shapes.

Then we started arranging the shapes.

And using jump rings, connected the shapes together

The last step was to add a chain.

The result is a super abstract and funky necklace!

You can find more ideas and inspiration for creating with a kid HERE


Tuesday, February 06, 2018

how to know when your art is finished

Something I get asked a lot is how do you know when your art is finished? I must admit that there is a method to knowing when to stop layering, stop creating and call it done. And while I don't have a magic solution, I do have a few tips that work for me:

1. I've found that it really helps to stop or push pause during the creative process. I will step away for a day or two, come back, take another look and decide if I want to keep going. I've found that taking a break and coming back gives me a fresh outlook and helps me make decisions about adding more layers or calling it done.

2. If your surface stops feeling dynamic, colorful or begins to get muddy...STOP IMMEDIATELY! It can be really easy to overwork those colors, especially when you are working in layers. If you add too much wet paint or mix too many colors, the surface will start to look muddy. This is when you need to stop, let that paint dry, go back into the surface and lighten things up by adding vibrant or contrasting colors.

3. Give yourself a number of layers to work through. For example: start with two or three layers. Try practicing this amount and then work your way up to adding more. This process can help you figure out how many layers work for you and when it feels right to stop.

4. If at any moment in your process you "fall in love" with your surface or if you are apprehensive about ruining something, this is a really good sign to stop and call it done.


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