Capture the Magic

I wanted to create an art journal page to remember my birthday which was last week, I had the most amazing time and thought I would recycle an old birthday card which I have treasured for a while.

To continue the recycled theme, I started by gluing some red netting from a bag of oranges to the page; this was quite difficult to do as the glues I had just didn’t want to hold the stretchy net in place. So I secured it as best I could and then used my heat gun to dry the glue, which happily melted the netting and looked really cool (grin!). Then to ensure the netting would stay in place I covered the whole page with white tissue paper using Liquitex matte gel medium, building up the layers of tissue paper to ensure all the netting was covered; I love all the background texture that the netting and tissue paper created. When the gel medium was dry, I scribbled Watermelon, Guava, Butter Cream, and Caramel Faber-Castell Gelatos onto the page and smudged them with my finger; they blended beautifully on top of the gel medium. I also added some Metallic Icing Faber-Castell Gelato to add contrast, some Abandoned Coral Distress Ink by applying the ink, spritzing with water and letting it run over and down the page and then I splattered the whole page with DecoArt black acrylic paint using a paintbrush. Next I recycled a cardboard tube to stamp circles of Pébéo white gesso and also black Soot Distress Ink onto the page. All the butterflies and flowers are from a birthday card and I fussy cut them out, edged them with Dark Sepia Faber-Castell Big Brush marker and arranged them onto the page using glue dots and double-sided tape. To finish, I added the wording “Capture the Magic” using Tim Holtz Label Letters which I mounted onto some of the cream recycled birthday card before sticking them to the page with glue dots; for me this page definitely captures the magic of my birthday!

My birthday celebrations started with lunch at our favourite restaurant Coco’s Soul Food, you may remember it from previous posts (grin!).

As T Stands for Tuesday, I’ll start by sharing some fizzy drinks that we selected while waiting for our food order, the choice is Passion Fruit, Lychee or Guava – Happy T Day!

You may be surprised to see that I didn’t have my usual Tropical Mango Chicken Salad but Jerk Chicken Enchiladas – so yummy! My hubby had the same and the portion was so big that there was enough for lunch the next day too (grin!).

Then we went on a lovely walk along the River Ribble and back through Avenham Park which was built in the 1860s and is Victorian in style. The day was sunny with some April showers and as the afternoon brought with it happy blue skies we had fun time exploring!

There were great views across the river …

… and of Silver Birch trees …

… and pretty blossoms!

I thought this photo of pretty blossoms would be perfect to enter into the Simply Neutrals Tuesday party over at Apple Apricot which is hosted by the lovely Wen.

There were quite a few old Victorian bridges on the walk too.

Walking back through the park, there was a Japanese Garden which was a beautiful setting for this old house in the background.

Along the railings that enclosed the garden were over 2000 aluminium eggs decorated by local schools for Easter – amazing!

There was also a wonderful display of daffodils and a waterfall which was a surprising discovery!

As well as pretty pink blossoms which remind me of the colours and flowers on my page.

I’m sure that I will be sharing more birthday treats with you again soon and thank you so much for all the lovely birthday wishes on my blog last week, it really made my day!

Challenges

I’m glad I found out about Challenge Blogs as I enjoy taking part, they provide me with inspiration for my pages and are a wonderful way to meet like-minded arty people. So here are the challenges I’m joining today:

I’m pleased to join the lovely Alison/Craftytrog, who is hosting the Recycle and Collage challenge over at Art Journal Journey with the recycled materials that I collaged onto this page including the netting, tissue paper and one of my favourite birthday cards.

As I reused and altered materials to create this page, I’m pleased to join the fun over at Country View Challenges and their Pimp It Up! (reuse or alter something) challenge.

As I created this page to capture the magic of my birthday celebrations, I’m also pleased to be able to join the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge and their Happy Birthday! challenge – wishing you a Happy 9th Birthday too!

With the circles I added to my page, I’m pleased to join a new challenge blog today over at That’s Crafty Challenge and their Going Round in Circles challenge.

This page fits nicely with the Recycle Something challenge over at Try it on Tuesday too where you still have another week to join in the fun, it would be great to see you there!

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Faber-Castell Gelato (Watermelon, Guava, Butter Cream, Caramel, Metallic Icing)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Abandoned Coral, Black Soot)
  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Marker (Dark Sepia B 175)
  • Stamp – recycled circular cardboard tube
  • Recycled birthday card
  • White tissue paper – recycled from gift packaging
  • Red netting – recycled from a bag of oranges
  • Tim Holtz Idea-ology (Label Letters #TH93072)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • Wilko (Sticky Dots)
  • The Range double-sided foam tape
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Coco’s Soul Food – Anniversary Special

As a special wedding anniversary treat we went to our favourite restaurant, you may remember it from an earlier post, it’s called Coco’s Soul Food.

I started the page by creating a bright wood effect background using Colourcraft Brusho Colours and Liquitex Matte Gel Medium. This technique is very simple in that I just sprinkled Dark Brown, Leaf Green and Turquoise Brushos onto my page then applied the gel medium over the top using a paintbrush making sure my brush strokes were in one direction to create the wood grain finish. Both the colours and wood grain remind me of both the interior decor and exterior colours of the restaurant. To get the shiny finish I applied a thin layer of PVA Glue over the top, which also sealed all the Brusho colour in place. Once the glue had dried, I added the flowers which are rub-on transfers and some white dots which are Docrafts Glitterations stickers. I fussy cut the globe of tropical beach images, which represent the images that can be found on the restaurant walls, from an old magazine and stuck it to the page using a UHU Stic. It’s outlined with a black Uni Pin marker and a white Uni Posca Paint pen. I also fussy cut the restaurant name which was computer printed, coloured the border around the “soul food” sign using a yellow Spectrum Aqua marker which produced an olive-green colour when it was combined with the already grey background. The words are coloured with the white Uni Posca paint pen and outlined with a black Uni Pin marker. To finish, I added the pretty sparkly hummingbirds and some small dots of white, black, pink, light green and purple using Uni Posca paint pens.

I’m pleased to join Elke from Meerwolkenleben who is hosting the “Landscape of the Soul” challenge over at Art Journal Journey as my page is a celebration of love and happiness.

I’m also pleased to be joining the new “Not a Card” challenge at Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge with my art journal page of happy anniversary memories.

I added hummingbirds to my page because of the drinks we had which as you can see had pretty hummingbirds on the can (just above the logo on the right). As T Stands for Tuesday, I’m sharing our mango and guava pop/sodas and saying a big hello to the T Gang! The mango was my favourite and they have plenty of other flavours for us to try next time (grin!). Wishing you all a Happy T Day!

I’ve featured this restaurant before on this post; you may remember the outside is a striking purple and lime green colour. Whilst the interior decor looks very tropical and is a colourful combination of turquoise, yellow and natural wood.

This is the fun counter where you order your food and drinks.

I had my usual yummy Tropical Mango Chicken Salad and a side of sweet potato fries, it was so delicious!

My hubby had one of the specials, Herb Crusted Cheesy Chicken served with a Mango Salad which was very tasty too! As you can imagine, we had the most wonderful time (grin!).

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Colourcraft Brusho Powders (Dark Brown, Leaf Green, Turquoise)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Yellow)
  • Derwant Graphik Fine Point marker (Black 0.05mm & 0.3mm)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pen (White, Black, Pink, Light Green, Purple)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Logo computer printout
  • Old magazine
  • Docrafts Glitterations (White Dots
  • Royal & Langnickel Rub-on Transfers (SYN1470G, Fab Flowers #ROY-1400, TIP1642G)
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • UHU Stic
  • Everbuild 501 PVA Glue

Time at the Harris Museum, Art Gallery and Library

Today my page is inspired by a trip to the “Harris Museum, Art Gallery and Library” in Preston. The building is very majestic and ornate, it tells a wonderful story of a time gone by and you can learn about local history in the museum and look at wonderful works of art in the Gallery. We had a lovely time exploring and looking around so I captured it on a journal page to recall the memories.

To portray the old building I wanted to create a vintage page with a grunge background, so I started by applying white gesso to the page with an old gift card and leaving it to dry. Once dried, I added Black Soot Distress Ink by applying the ink pad to an acrylic block and picking up the ink with the gift card and scraping the ink across the page. I used the same technique to add Peeled Paint Distress Ink which I diluted with some water on the acrylic block to tone down the colour a little. Next I created a collage on the page, using a collection of papers from Vintage design pads by Craft Sensations, which reminded me of the museum, art gallery and library that we visited. These papers included some lined paper which I stamped with a Script stamp and an Alphabet stamp, both by Kaisercraft, using black Archival Ink and then I stuck them to the bottom left-hand side of the page using a UHU Stic. Like all of the papers, I edged them with a Desert Spectrum Aqua marker and a black Derwent Graphik marker to give them more definition. I also fussy cut different paper images and layered them on the top right-hand side of the page and on one of these papers I stamped a clock image from a Steampunk stamp set by Docrafts using black Archival Ink. I used the same clock stamp for the top paper which details an open book and photos, and I added a vintage clock die-cut shape to the centre of the stamped image using double-sided foam tape. The photo images remind me of the art gallery and also the grandeur of the building as well as the lamp posts that we saw at its entrance. I stamped black circles alongside the clock using a cap from a spray bottle and black Archival Ink, and then inserted the black button letters to spell out the word “Time” which along with the clock images reminds me of the pendulum clock situated in the central hall/atrium. I mounted these elements onto white card and stuck them to the page using double-sided foam tape. Next I stamped the words “Once upon a time” onto another piece of paper using black Archival Ink and an Alphabet stamp set by Papermania; this applies to the library books, the museum history and the artworks in the gallery. Then I mounted it on white card, fussy cut the page out and distressed the edges using scissors. I edged it with black Faber-Castell Big Brush marker as well as the Desert Spectrum Aqua marker and stuck it to the page using double-sided foam tape. To finish, I added a pretty piece of antique looking ribbon and two vintage metal embellishments.

The Harris building dates back to 1893 and was built in an imposing neo-classical design. The main feature of the front of the building is the pediment which houses a sculpture representing “The School of Athens” and a number of griffins guarding the lamp of learning on the apex. Beneath the pediment is the inscription “To Literature, Arts and Science” which reflects the purpose of the building.

Rather than have a set of front steps leading directly into the building from what was the busy Market Square there are two entrances on either side of the building which lead to a covered entrance with beautiful lamp posts.

The main feature of the interior is the impressive central hall which rises through four storeys over 120 feet to the lantern tower.  The mosaic floors and columns also reflect classical influences from Ancient Greece and Egypt. As part of the design there are plaster copies of Classical and Renaissance sculpture to illustrate the “whole range and history of the world’s greatest achievements in art” and a number of these classical friezes can be found throughout the central atrium along with a 19th-century copy of the Baptistery doors from Florence.

The museum has a permanent history gallery called “Discover Preston” and features collections including archaeology, ethnography and local history. The museum houses the “Poulton Elk” which is very well-known around here as it was found under a bungalow in the 1970s! The skeleton is intact and has an arrowhead embedded in its leg, and as it is over 13,500 years old it’s the earliest evidence of people living in the Northwest of England. I was excited to see it, although I know this animal as a Moose from visiting America, apparently we call them Elk over here in the UK which surprised me (grin!).

The staircase is magnificent too, here is the view from the Gallery area with the beautiful Greek and Assyrian friezes, soft pink walls, amazing artwork, marble, sculptures and mosaic floors.

The gallery houses a number of contemporary and classical artworks as well as photographs.

This is the view from the Art Gallery floor down to the Museum floor and the Central Hall.  You can just make out the Foucault pendulum on the lower floor on the right-hand side of the picture. It hangs in the central foyer, through all the floors, over a butterfly-shaped plate marked with the hours of the day. As a result of the rotation of the Earth, this functions as a decorative and reasonably-accurate clock. It’s a spectacular view and was certainly a long way down (grin!).

As usual I also had fun creating a page that incorporates a number of blog challenges too; which I always enjoy as they are a fantastic source of inspiration.

I’m pleased to join Yvonne from Meggy’s Way who is hosting the “Colour in my World” challenge over at Art Journal Journey because at the library we were greeted with neutral and soft colours like you can find on my page.

Over at Try it on Tuesday their theme is “Time or Clocks” so I’m pleased to be able to join in their fun as I added references to both of them onto my page.

I’m also joining the “Anything Mixed Media Goes” challenge over at Mixed Media World with my library inspired page.

As I added the metal embellishments, I’m pleased to join “Heavy Metal” challenge over at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge.

I’m also entering my vintage inspired page in the “Vintage” Challenge over at The Mixed Media Challenge.

Thanks for joining me today! If you have any questions or comments, I would love to hear from you.

Here is a list of all the materials used to create this art journal page:

  • Pébéo White Gesso
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Black Soot, Peeled Paint)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Desert)
  • Derwent Graphik Line Marker (Black 0.05mm & 0.8mm)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush Pitt artist pen (Black 199)
  • Kaisercraft clear stamp (Script CS752, Alphabet CS887)
  • Docrafts Creativity Essentials A5 clear stamp set (Steampunk DCE907125)
  • Papermania Alphamania A-Z stamp set (Leftovers Alphabet PMA9071102)
  • Craft Sensations Design Pad (Authentic Vintage CRO730/R, Travel Memories 154898, Classic Vintage CRO707/TW7, Vintage Romance 154897)
  • White card
  • The Works M&C Boutique (Vintage Die Cut Shapes)
  • Poundworld Décotime (Vintage Metal Stickers 54748)
  • Poundworld Craft Corner (Adhesive Ribbon U-80933)
  • Home Bargains Love Letters (Self-Adhesive Button Letters 22738)
  • UHU Stic
  • The Range double-sided foam tape