Friday, February 1, 2013

Balance::Still working on it!

My word for the year 2013 is "Balance".  I have a feeling this will be a constant thing to strive for this year.  To keep the thought foremost in my mind I made myself a sign that is hanging on my studio door so it is the first thing I see in the morning and usually the last thing I see at night.  I used clowns as the focal point of the sign since I usually think of the circus and clowns with all their juggling acts, etc when I think of balance.  (Or the girl standing up on the horse's back or the tight rope could go on and on.)  And so I continue my quest.  At least I've started watching my diet.  I became a gluten free vegetarian a couple of months ago and have cut out most of the refined sugary things in my diet.  People ask if I'm a Vegan but when I heard they don't wear leather I decided I'd rather be a good vegetarian than a naughty Vegan.  Enough about food already!

The sign starts with my big art crush right now:  watercolor paper 140 lb coated lightly with gesso and allowed to dry.  Imagine Crafts very generously sent me their newest addition to their Kaleidacolor family collection of five-ink color pads, Tomato Vine and the individual Memento colors that are in that pad.  These colors include Morocco, Love Letter, Bamboo Leaves, Espresso Truffle and  Peanut Brittle.  I took a brayer and inked it up with the Kaleidacolor pad then ran it across the dried prepared watercolor paper.  Time to spritz with my little water bottle sprayer.  I allowed the colors to run together and blotted them just a  little not too much or you risk removing all the color.  Now for the Fireworks!  That would be Tsukineko Fireworks! Dandelion yellow spray ink.  I allowed this to run and then blotted off the excess.

The clowns are digital images called "Euro Clowns" by Rick St. Dennis.  He has the most amazing clip art on his site.  I started coloring them in with Memento Markers and then fancy cut out the images.  For their faces I used copic markers, then added a little glitter with my Gelly Roll Starz pen through out.  The letters for my word were stamped on a plain, scrap piece of watercolor paper using StazOn Black ink.  I used a Julie Balzer Honeycomb stencil and a dauber to lay some Espresso Truffle lightly onto the surface.  To attach the word and the image firmly to the paper Matte Medium seems to be the best adhesive.

To finish the project I used an old credit card to draw lines in black, white and red acrylic paints.  A chevron stencil to put a translucent design over the project randomly, Pearlescent stencil paste by Dreamweavers is my favorite paste.  The final touch is the delightful hanger to hold it in place on my door.  Here are a few photos.
In the meantime, stay balanced in all parts of your life, you get more done that way!  Great sharing with you today.  I will post my first official Imagine Crafts/Artists in Residence assignment on Sunday, Feb 3rd.  I would like to invite you to stop by and take a look at my answer to the challenge of using their new Kaleidacolor Tomato Vine ink pad.  I will have three challenges each month from them for the entire year of 2013.  If you have comments or suggestions don't hesitate to leave them in the comment section, I love to read what you think!  See you later, have a great weekend.


  1. wow a gorgeous creation, beautiful colors!
    have a nice weekend!

  2. Renee.. "balance" is a big word for me as I try to balance my life, work and art. I guess I manage, but it's constant force with me. I am in love with your clowns. I am not a big clown fan, but these are so wonderful to look at. A bit like Tim Burton's style. LOVE!

  3. Very cute FAMILY! funny and serious))) cool!

  4. I don't know one person in this whole wide world who doesn't struggle with some type of balance in their one is perfect! LOVE this...the theme, the color...yummy, the cute people...even bald, the gessoed watercolor paper! Everything here is perfectly balanced!!!

  5. Here's to balance! Until then, here's to your awesome peeps and their fab colors, Renee. Hugs!

  6. I love the colors of the clown outfits! and the whole sign! I love using watercolor paper (140 lb. cold press); why do you gesso the surface?

    1. I gesso the surface for two reasons, first to have a resist that will prevent the spray inks from soaking all the way in, the gesso is a little streaky so it soaks in on some parts of the paper and not others and second to give the paper more body and character that comes from the texture of the gesso. If there are areas that I simply can't live with on journal pages I just gesso over them very lightly too. Good question, thanks for asking!