Always find a song

Today my page for the “Poetry in Motion” theme over at Art Journal Journey was inspired by a Swedish Proverb. I love the optimism of these simple words:
“Those who wish to sing will always find a song”.

I covered the page with white and pastel shades of blue and green acrylic paint using a brayer, waiting for each layer to dry before adding the next colour. I then sprinkled Ultramarine Colourcraft Brusho Crystal powder onto the page and spritzed it with water and just watched the magic as the colours burst into life. I wanted a slightly muted tone and as the Brusho was so vibrant I decided to cover the page with a thin layer of white gesso and the same acrylic paints again, this time painting them on with my finger. I like the way the Brusho powders add pops of colour through the paint. Next I added a pattern which I copied from a dreamcatcher that is hanging in my craft room and outlined it with a black Uni Posca paint pen, which took quite a bit of time as there were so many sections. Then I masked some of the sections and stamped a music stamp using black Archival Ink and a delicate flower outline stamp using Danube Blue Memento Ink. I found the blue ink was a bit distracting so I toned it down by dabbing with a baby wipe. I stamped the proverb using an alphabet stamp set by Hampton Art and black Archival Ink, and I added some white dots to the letters using a Uni Posca paint pen. The sections are embellished with blue gems and paper flowers and I used more of the same gems along the edge of the circular design. To finish, I added a little felt bird into the centre of the sections so it looks like it’s song is radiating across the page to depict the quote. You may also notice that the little bird is the same colours as the Swedish flag tying into the origins of the quote that I used too (grin!).

As birds often sing in my garden, I am also pleased to be able to join the lovely Eileen who is Guest Designer for the “In my garden” theme over at Try it on Tuesday. I think my little bird is happy to provide some music for Eileen’s ‘Miss Froggy’ ballerina to dance too (double grin!).

As a proverb is often metaphorical, I believe it means you will find a way to do the things you want. Of course it can be taken literally too, and my hubby will tell you that I can find a song for any occasion and I’m often found singing around the house. Music makes me happy (grin!).

  I love all sorts of music and have quite an eclectic taste, so I thought I’d share with you some happy music moments, from this month, as we have attended quite a few music events and festivals being held in our local parks (grin!). The picture above is of the bandstand at Stanley Park where during the summer they have a different band playing every weekend, so we took a picnic and sat around the auditorium to listen to them.

This is our favourite local band called ‘Ska Face’ and it’s the first time they have played at the park. We usually go to see this band two or three times a year at local festivals and pubs. They are a ten-piece ska band from Blackpool who play and sing classics from Madness, The Specials, Bad Manners and The Beat. This type of ska music is known as the ‘2 Tone‘ genre which began in the late 1970s. A checkerboard motif is associated with ‘2 Tone’ which explains this saxophone player’s stylish suit.

There was another band playing before them called ‘The Flash Hearts’, who played rock songs and I was singing along to their rendition of ‘Dead or Alive’ by Guns and Roses and ‘My Sharona’ by the Knack.

We also went to a local music festival in Ashton Gardens just down the road, it was fun cycling there on our tandem and listening to the various bands throughout the day. This band is ‘Eye the Bomb’ who are a five-piece Alternative Rock band from Blackpool who fuse together elements of Rock, Funk, Hip-Hop and Punk. They played their own music and a few covers including ‘Give it away’ by The Red Hot Chili Peppers.

This band is ‘Paper Mountains’ whose songs are influenced by bands like Nirvana and Killers.

It was fun partying in the park and creating this page! I hope you are enjoying the “Poetry in Motion” challenge over at Art Journal Journey too, where you are invited to create a page inspired by a poem, saying or quote.

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
  • DecoArt Crafter’s Acrylic (White)
  • Aldi Script (Ready Mixed Pastel Paints)
  • Colourcraft Brusho Colours (Ultra Marine)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Memento Ink (Danube Blue)
  • Uni Posca Paint Pen (Black, White)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.2mm)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Musicality DCE907112)
  • Hampton Art Mini Wood Peg Rubber Stamps (Alphabet Set #1037)
  • Dovecraft Essentials Alphabet Stamp Set (WDN ALPHA STMP DCVW0050)
  • Poundland (Accessories Pack 60911)
  • Home Bargains The Craft Set Company (Gems Jewels 63283)
  • Home Bargains Craft Time (Felt Stickers 57877)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents

Rise and Shine

In our beach themed room we have a little plaque that our friends from America bought us when they came to stay, so I thought I’d pay tribute to it for the “Poetry in Motion” challenge over at Art Journal Journey. I’m sure those of you who know my love for walking will think this saying is very appropriate …

I started by prepping the page with a thin layer of Pébéo white gesso to give a smoother finish in readiness to apply the Faber-Castell Gelatos. Once the gesso had dried I scribbled patches of Snow Cone, Lemon and Lime gelatos onto my page to represent the beach; the blue for the sea and sky, yellow for the sand and green for the grassy dunes. Then I dipped my finger into water and rubbed the gelato scribbles to blend the colours; I didn’t use too much water as I wanted a heavier coverage of gelato for the next technique. I covered each of the different coloured areas of the page with a different stencil by Creative Expressions. I rubbed the gelatos through the stencils with a baby wipe to remove and lighten the colour; the stencils I choose were of dots to represent the sea breeze as we take our walk, birds in flight as we often see birds on our beach walks, cogs and a clock face to represent time which ties into the saying. I then used the stencils again to apply Black Soot Distress Ink using a blending tool, lining up the images so they were slightly off centre to add contrast and depth. Next I secondary stamped some arrow images by Hampton Art, using black Archival Ink, to depict the different directions that we can take on our beach walk. Then I used the same ink to add the saying using a Papermania alphabet stamp set. The page is edged with black and white polka dot washi tape which I ripped the tape in half to create an uneven edge. To finish, I added some paper flowers and three wooden polka dot butterfly buttons which I had tied black paper twine through; they are all stuck down using Glossy Accents.

We feel very blessed to live right by the sea so we often go for a walk along our beach. There are lots of different directions that you can choose from … you can walk over the dunes and to a pebbled coastal path.  On the right of this picture are the mudflats where we often see birds (see previous post).

If you walk along this path or through the dunes it leads to Fairhaven Lake.

Go the other way and there are beaches and a promenade with lots of things to see and do such as beach huts, pitch & putt golf, cinema etc.

Eventually you’ll reach the pier, this is my hubby with one of our friends from America when they came to stay – hence why they bought us the sign (grin!).

Of course sometimes the tide is in, the structure on the left of the photo at the end of the pier used to be attached to the pier at one time; in Victorian times it was where ships dropped off their passengers unfortunately it was claimed by a fire.

And when the tide is out you can even walk out to sea, that’s the pier you can see in the distance! It actually feels like you are on another planet the way the sand blows in ripples across the surface of the beach (grin!).

Here’s the plaque that inspired my page; it always makes me smile when I see it and it’s a lovely reminder of our forever friends! In case you’re wondering the lamp in the background is made by my hubby out of drift wood that we collected from our beach too (isn’t he clever!).

So as you can see with all the different walks we have to offer, it’s so easy for us to say “Rise and shine it’s beach walkin’ time!”

“Poetry in Motion”

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)
  • Faber-Castell Gelatos (Snow Cone, Lemon, Lime)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • Papermania Alphamania A-Z Clear Stamps (Leftovers Alphabet PMA9071102)
  • Craft Sensations (Deco Stencil Set 154892)
  • Hampton Art Bella Blvd cling mounted rubber stamps (Sand & Surf ICO226)
  • Poundland (Washi Tape 156456-GE16)
  • The Works (Butterfly Wooden Buttons)
  • The Works (Mini Paper Flower Embellishment)
  • Wilko (Paper Twine)
  • Ranger Glossy Accents

Something Wonderful

I love the phrase “Always believe something wonderful is about to happen” as it reminds me to always have hope and stay optimistic. So I’m pleased to link the page I created using this saying to the “Poetry in Motion” challenge over at Art Journal Journey, where you are invited to create a page inspired by a poem, quote or saying.

I started by mixing acrylic paints to make a teal colour, which I applied to the page using a baby wipe. I used a paintbrush to apply fine splatters of white and black acrylic paint over the top. While the paint was drying I drew and cut out some tree silhouettes and twiggy branches from a London A-Z Street Atlas, which is quite old so the pages have aged and become discoloured (grin!). I stuck them to the page using Liquitex Matte Gel Medium and once dry, I outlined them with a black Uni Pin marker. Then I added some bark details using a black Sharpie permanent marker and a white Uniball gel pen so they looked like Silver Birch trees. The butterflies are fussy cut from a wallpaper sample leaving a very thin white border around them so they would stand out from the background and they are stuck in place using double-sided foam tape. The wording is made up from letters that I cut from old magazines and they are stuck to the page using the matte gel medium again. I choose Picked Raspberry, Mustard Seed and Peacock Feathers Distress Inks to match the colours of the butterflies and used them to paint the letters; I did this by applying the ink pad to an acrylic block, spritzing the block with water and then picking up the ink with a paintbrush. To finish, I drew white boxes around the words using a ruler and a Uniball gel pen so they stood out more.

The butterflies on my page remind me of these pretty butterflies that adorn my craft room wall, they were bought from a trendy interior design shop in Liverpool for my birthday.

I see them every day and having created this page I will forever be reminded to “Always believe something wonderful is going to happen” – which makes me smile!

“Poetry in Motion”

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:

  • Liquitex Artist Color Acylic (Swedish Blue, Christmas Green, Ivory Black)
  • Colvin & Co Artist’s Acrylic (White Titanium)
  • Tim Hotlz Distress Ink (Picked Raspberry, Mustard Seed, Peacock Feathers)
  • Sharpe Permanent Fine Point Marker (Black)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line Marker (Black 0.1mm & 0.8mm)
  • Uniball Signo gel pen (White)
  • A-Z London Street Atlas
  • Wallpaper sample
  • Old magazines
  • Liquitex Matte Gel Medium
  • The Range Double-sided tape

Bring Me Sunshine    

Morecambe & Wise are a well-known comedy duo here in the UK and I have fond memories of watching their famous TV shows. So you can imagine my delight when we heard their songs outside the Winter Gardens whilst we were shopping in town. On investigating, the music led us to a wonderful bronze statue of them both that has been unveiled in the foyer. This inspired me to create a journal page of them that includes the title of their signature song “Bring Me Sunshine”.

Having quoted this song on my page, I’m linking to the “Poetry in Motion” theme over at Art Journal Journey. Hope you’ll join in the fun too by creating a page that is inspired by a poem, saying or quote (maybe from your favourite song).

I started by stamping a star burst stamp onto the middle of the page using grey Memento Ink and extending the starburst sun pattern using a ruler and pencil. Then I painted alternating sections with a yellow and then a gold Spectrum Aqua marker which I scribbled onto an acrylic block and diluted with water using a paintbrush. Next I stamped “Bring Me Sunshine” using a Papermania Leftovers Alphabet stamp set and black Archival Ink. I added two washi tapes to the top and bottom of the page, the film and music note designs depict their television shows and songs. The Morecambe & Wise photo is cut from a magazine and shows them in their younger days when they appeared at the Winter Gardens itself. Next I added some metal music notes attaching them to the page with silver brads. I finished the page with smiley star stickers which reminded me of their comedy and how they make me smile.

This is the Morecambe & Wise statue that greets you when you enter the Winter Gardens and with the songs they are well-known for playing in the air it fills you with a lovely sense of nostalgia. Blackpool is considered their “spiritual home” as they performed six summer seasons and over a 1,000 shows here. This statue marks the 75th anniversary of their debut performance as a double act, which was at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre in 1941.

Their 43-year partnership started in variety theatres where they honed their performance before making their famous TV shows on the BBC and ITV. Their Christmas specials were one of the highlights of the festive season and in 1977 they attracted over 27 million viewers. Guest stars included The Beatles, André Previn, Shirley Bassey and of course Des O’Connor (grin!).

Morecambe & Wise always made me laugh as a young girl growing up and still do today as there are always reruns of their shows at Christmas time. Their songs and dance numbers are fantastic and always make me smile, here’s a rendition of “Bring me Sunshine” from one of their shows – so funny!

There have also been some other happy reminders of Morecambe & Wise of late (grin!). This time of year we often cycle up the prom on our tandem, here I am on the Comedy Carpet in Blackpool and I’m standing by their section of the carpet with the lyrics of this song in front of me! If you are interested, here are some fun facts about the song:

  • “Bring Me Sunshine” is a song written in 1966 by the composer Arthur Kent, with lyrics by Sylvia Dee and it was first performed by American artists.
  • In the UK, the song is synonymous with Morecambe & Wise after it was adopted as their signature tune in their second series for the BBC in 1969. Here’s the lyrics of the song in full.
  • The song was played over the duo’s closing credits and they only ever sang the first verse, the second one being purely instrumental with Eric and Ernie performing a “skip dance” to exit the stage.

We have also been to quite a few local beer festivals lately and when I saw this beer I just had to have a pint of it. It’s called “Morecambe’s Sunshine” and is brewed by Cross Bay Brewery which is located in Morecambe; the beer is light in colour, 4% abv ( alcohol by volume) and has a lovely smooth malt taste – yum! I’m saying a big cheers to the T Gang over at T stands for Tuesday and wishing you all a Happy Sunshiny T Day!

The pump clip shows the bronze statue of Eric Morecambe in his famous “skip dance” pose. This statue is on my list of places to visit and is located on the seafront at Morecambe, it’s actually designed by the same person who made the bronze sculpture of them both (above).

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:

  • Spectrum Aqua Artist Marker (Yellow, Gold)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Papermania Alphamania A-Z Clear Stamps (Leftovers Alphabet PMA9071102)
  • Blackpool Heritage magazine
  • The Works (3 Washi Tapes)
  • The Works (Musical Note Charms)
  • Small silver brads
  • UPIKIT Stickers (2166005)
  • UHU Stic

Be Happy, Be Bright, Be You

When I started this page I didn’t have any real direction, so I asked my hubby to choose the media and some random colours for my background. He chose a set of brightly coloured Distress Inks; I’m not surprised that he chose these colours as he always prefers vibrant, bright ones. His choice linked perfectly with a saying that always makes me smile “Be Happy, Be Bright, Be You”, so I created this page to link to this month’s theme “Poetry in Motion” over at Art Journal Journey.

I started by stencilling a piece of white card and also the page with modelling paste using a Viva Décor Universal Stencil called Past Times. The paste is mixed with black acrylic paint to turn it black and was left over from a greeting card that I made. Once you add paint to modelling paste it becomes wetter and takes longer to dry, so I left it overnight to dry out completely. Next I took Peacock Feathers, Picked Raspberry, Spiced Marmalade and Mustard Seed Distress Inks that my hubby had chosen and applied patches of colour to the page using a blending tool keeping the colour in vertical stripes. I also applied the ink pads directly to an acrylic block, spritzed the block with water and pressed it onto the page allowing the different colours to blend where the stripes joined.  Using the block again, I dripped diluted inks onto the page, so they pooled and ran down between the modelling paste when the page was tilted to create channels of colour. I fussy cut the cogs that I had stencilled on the white card and then applied the same Distress Inks, they are stuck to the page using double-sided foam tape to add more dimension. The words are stamped using black Archival Ink on craft tags, which I coloured with the same Distress Inks using a blending tool as well as diluting the ink with water and flicking it onto the tags using a paintbrush. To finish, I added gemstones to the cog centres.

Of late I have been thinking of our Annual International Kite Festival which is normally held on our local beach in August, but this year it’s been scheduled for September instead because of the tides (being a beach event this festival is completely tide dependent and so they choose dates when there is a low tide). As always I’m looking forward to the festival and this colourful and happy page reminds me of the festival’s Samba Sunday and in particular this dancer, who we saw last year – doesn’t she look fabulous!

Here’s the Samba procession as it winds it way down the promenade to the beach and pier. It is fun to watch the dancers, listen to the music and follow the parade; aren’t the costumes amazing!

The band is wonderful and the music is very uplifting. If you are interested, here are some fun facts about samba:

  • Samba music is carnival rhythms which originate in Brazil.
  • The Samba dance is lively, rhythmical and full of energy.
  • The music is played with different instruments, this includes: Bass drums (known as surdo drums) which are used to keep a steady beat; Snare drums; A whistle called an apito which is used by the band leader to begin and end sections of music; as well as other types of un-tuned percussion and different bells.
  • The musicians move along with the dancers. As such most samba drums are made of very light material so that they can be carried through the streets for hours on end.
  • The music is very loud, which is similar to other drumming bands, so it attracts listeners.

I think the Samba dancers and band also encompass the words “Be Happy, Be Bright, Be You”.

I would just like to offer a special thank you for all the lovely supportive comments I have received, and for the wonderful pages that have already been linked to the “Poetry in Motion” theme over at Art Journal Journey! If you want to join in the fun too then all you need to do is link a page that you have created which has been inspired by your favourite poem, quote or saying. I look forward to seeing 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:

  • Pébéo Modeling Paste High Density
  • Liquitex Artist Colour Acrylic (Ivory Black)
  • Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Peacock Feathers, Picked Raspberry, Spiced Marmalade, Mustard Seed)
  • Ranger Archival Ink (Jet Black)
  • Faber-Castell Big Brush artist pen (Black 199)
  • Uni Pin Fine Line marker (Black 0.1mm and 0.8mm)
  • Viva Décor Universal Stencil (Past Times 9002 703 00)
  • Docrafts A5 clear stamp set (Alphas Folk DCE907115)
  • The Works (Assorted Craft Tags)
  • Poundland (504 Gems)
  • White card stock
  • The Range double-sided foam tape