Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Keys 4 Art - Day 2

Up very early, found the coffee maker ready, pressed start, and was shortly joined by Lillian, another early riser. We found some bagels, shared breakfast and nice conversation, and waited for everyone else to make an appearance.  It didn't take long.  I think we were all excited to begin.
I planned to show the group some of the techniques I learned in the Lynne Perrella workshops I took last August.(To learn more about that, go to my August blog posts).   So, first thing to do, was cut up some red rosin paper.   You can find rolls of this stuff in Home Depot, and believe it or not, this paper, which is normally used to protect flooring during construction, makes the very best art paper......once gesso is applied.
We had to do this first, so there would be plenty of time for it to dry completely before we could add color and collage elements.   At this stage, everyone added lots of texture, with stamps, stencils, bits of cardboard, netting, string, sponges, bubble get the picture.
Gina shows me her gessoed fingers
Once everyone was finished, we set the paper aside to dry, and immediately got into Val's wonderful journal project.  This was her gift to us all, and included chipboard covers, coin envelope inserts, and a bag full of fun embellishments.....chipboard pieces, maps of Florida, a tiny bottle full of sand, etc.
Mind you, these are my leftovers!  There was a bag full of goodies.
We all set to work on our journals, decorating the coin envelopes and covers.  Here are some shots of a busy studio:
Linda and Patty working on their journals
Jen, Gina, Marita and Sue take time out for a photo op
Look all the way in the back, right in front of the window.  That's a huge cage, and inside is Pancho, Elena's
blue macaw.  Noisy fellow.
Jen and Juliet, Pancho behind them
Val gathered us together to demonstrate the "drunken scotch" technique, which she used on the frame on the cover of her journal.
 It is a very cool technique, and I've mentioned it here before.  Basically you apply glue to a piece of chipboard or grungeboard, drop some alcohol ink on top, then blast it with the heat gun to get a bubbly, rusty look.  Here's how it looks on my journal cover:
We used the frame to make a shaker box.  There are tiny beads inside.  The shells were contributed by Elena.  The bird is one I made of polymer clay, but that's for another post.
Here are some more pages from my journal (which when completed was bound by Val with Elena's Bind-It-All:
The cover with some mementos hanging from a chain.
Close up of the danglies.  I found the leaf outside Elena's house, and covered it completely with crystal effects.  The key was done with the drunken scotch technique.  The rectangular tile was done in our polymer clay class (more on that tomorrow), the little fish charm I added at home, but the tiny fish hook was done on the spot for everyone by Gina.  The glass bottle full of sand and shells was in the goodie bag Val gave us, and the shells were from Elena.
The inside front cover.  A bit of the map of Florida, with Key Largo highlighted under a clear bauble.  The bird was done with the inlaid embossing technique (more on that later).
Val gave us each a library book card which we used to have everyone sign in:

I decorated the rest of my pages as the mood struck.  Used paper on some, paint on others, some stamping, stenciling, and collaging of some beachy Graphic45 paper.  Here are just a few of the pages:
This is the inside of the back cover:
And the back cover itself:

Jacquie had brought some delicious sweet and savory pastries from a wonderful Miami bakery, and we just kept eating them throughout the morning, right into lunch time.  No one even thought of stopping to go out for food.  Too much to do, too much fun being had.
In the afternoon, Jen shared with us some of what  she's learned taking online face drawing classes.  She is REALLY good at it.  First we sketched faces by looking at pictures from magazines.  Here are my two attempts:
Then we were able to pick a face from a magazine that Jen had covered with a light coat of gesso.  You could still make out the features, so it was a great way to practice.  Wonderful technique, Jen!
 Here is Elena working on one of her sketches:

When it was time for dinner, we drove to a local restaurant, Marlin, where Elena is very well known, and we feasted on a never ending array of Cuban food....not to mention some very good margaritas.  Thanks to Manny, the very generous owner.
And the very best......


Angie Hall Haviland said...

I am so enjoying reading your posts about your trip!! YOur little book is GORGEOUS!!

Anonymous said...

Love your amazing book. I am enjoying your trip immensely. I can't wait for another installment, seems as if everyone thought of everything to make it a perfect adventure.
Gail in Oklahoma

craftyM said...

Am seeing lots of my pics and people made fun of all the photos I took of food and the key lime pie sign, etc! Ha! They have come in handy when it comes to the memory at least they do for me! We need to ask Elena the Cuban name of the little plantain buckets with the shrimp in them!!!
Keep bloggin' this is so fun to follow!

Ruth Bonar said...

Can't wait for your next installment. Since I don't think I will be visiting the Keys, this is the next best thing to it.
Thanks so much.

Helen said...

My, you've been busy! I couldn't do the drawing bit, but it sounds such fun! Enjoy the rest of it.

Anonymous said...

Oh LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT!!!! Love your updates......You know...I've done the drunkin scotch technique on a tree I made for a scrapbook and didn't even know it had a name....the affect of it is amazing!!!

Nanc said...

Your book is just great and I am enjoying hearing and seeing about your journey in Key Largo. So glad you got to have this wonderful experience.

Sarah W said...

Love it. Love hearing about your adventures and what you all got up too. Looks like you all had a blast. Keep on blogging about this trip. Now Eileen, where can I get the bird cage from????

Diann said...

I am so enjoying your wonderful trip...I feel like I am there with you....can't wait for the next dose! Diann

Lori said...

eeeekkkkkk....KEY LIME PIE! Wasn't that eighthly on my list???? lol. This is so great. I just love reading about your trip. It's like I'm right there.... that leaf with crystal effects is just AMAZING!, and the bird from polymer clay..MORE PLEASE!!!! Can't wait to see the installment about the polymer clay....and all the other stuff where you said "more later", you're torturing me...

Elaine A said...

Eileen -

You are killing me each time you say "more about that later"! I feel like I was there, loving all your memories of your fun time. Can't wait to hear more.

Elaine Allen

Cheryl said...

This all looks wonderful Eileen! So much fun getting together with friends who have the same passion, or should I say obsession.

inge said...

Hello Eileen,

what a fully filled day !
I like the photo where you see everyone is busy on their table and the photo with the gessoed fingers :)

You could need some more practice on your drawings, but it's a good start if you never drew faces before ! Just trying things out you've never done makes you discover things in yourself you didn't know you had them !

the book is really nice : the drunker sailor technique is awesome ( I learned it from you ! ) and the different pages will bring specific memories back when you look at them, as are the embellisments on the spine.

greetings from belgium