Month: March 2008

We've been having so much fun watching the birds that I thought I might try drawing a few.  I was testing out some stamp frames in my sketchbook and they looked bare so I invited some birds to live in them.Bird_stamp_roughs  (Credits to the book, Artist's Photo Reference Songbirds for inspiring the double cardinal pose. )  I liked the look of the bird stamps so I Gpp_stamps used tracing paper and transfered them to my journal. Then got out my trusty watercolors to give them a bit more punch.  Amazing how much inspiration and entertainment you can have for just a little birdseed.

Read More

The GPP Crusade to carve a stamp has just been way too much fun.  Here is the bird stamp I carved in use in my journal.114_3124 I checked out the book, Art Stamping Workshop by Gloria Page, at the library and decided to copy her postage stamp carvings.  They are addictive.  I ended up with three but I could use a dozen to serve as frames for drawings and script.114_3123_2

Read More

EDM#163, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

EDM Challenge #163 Draw a deck of cards. Finding the prop was a bit of a challenge. I had to search the house top to bottom but I was able to dig up a real deck of cards for the challenge. Having a house full of kids means I easily found four different types of Uno sets, scads of baseball cards, and role-playing card games but the real cards were buried deep in a closet. Go figure….

Read More


I’ve had a blast with this crusade!  I got to pretend to be a sculptress as a I carved out a few stamps for my journal, cool.

For my first try at carving a stamp, I chose an abstract design based on a sculpture that I saw in a catalog. I really don’t have a place in my home for a large sculpture of a moebius flame, but it fits just fine in my journal pages <grin>.114_2754_7114_2760_2

The next stamp that I carved was a very primitive-looking little bird.  We’ve been having a lot of fun lately watching the birds at our backyard feeders and I think it is time that they found a page or two of their own in my journal.  I was on the phone and not paying much attention to carving the stamp so I accidentally started shaving off the lines instead of the negative area around the image. When I realized what I was doing it was too late.  I decided to just go with it and added an outline also.  Didn’t test out too bad, so I trimmed the stamp into a rough bird shape and left it.

I’ve been wanting a few b114_2761ackground stamps for my journal so I took a whole stamp block and carved parallel lines into.  I like the way it turned out, simple and versatile.

Finally, here114_2759_3  is a glimpse of my poor desk with all the carving chaos

Read More

EDM#162, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

EDM challenge #162, draw your breakfast.
Sorry, but I was hungry so this is just a fast and loose pencil sketch of my usual omelet in a pita. Nuke and eat….

Read More

EDM#4, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

For EDM#4 I drew my chunky, primitive Knitter’s mug. I love this mug- the nice solid heft to it, the glossy, blobby, black sheep shapes, the slick forest green glaze, and the rough unglazed exterior with the tool lines going round and round that are a reminder that it was made by a real human and not by a mindless machine. The older I get, the more I appreciate handmade items. They seem to have more soul in them.

Read More

EDM#3, originally uploaded by ffyrebird.

This is my bag for the EDM# 3 challenge. Inside the bag is my little Hitchhiker spinning wheel. If you are familiar with the Hitchhiker wheels, you will notice that mine doesn’t have the hitchhiking hand/thumb cutout carry handle. I wanted it to be even more portable and got the version with the cut down top. That shaved several inches off so the wheel could fit in the frontseat floorboard area of a car. I’ve yet to try spinning in the car, however. The wheel does have the treadle in the shape of a huge barefoot. That is why this tote with sandals on it is so perfect for the wheel in my mind, besides the fact that I looove and collect anything from Life is Good!

Read More


Originally uploaded by

Here is my go at EDM challenge #2, draw a lamp. I had to go find a photo of a lamp because at our house we just have overhead lighting, no lamps. I never even had given that any thought.

This is version B because I didn’t like the wonky shadow on version A.Copy_of_edm_2a  And here is version A.  After messing it up, I tried playing with it.  I was going for the "art journal" look.  Think I pretty much missed…

Read More

EDM#161 smells wonderful
Originally uploaded by ffyrebird

This week the challenge was to draw something that smells wonderful. I chose the honeysuckle vines I planted along my fence. I remembered the smell from childhood and wanted some vines at my home. I also wanted the vines to attract birds to the yard. The birds seem to love the odd vine with reddish, purple, orange flowers on it. (I’m partial to the old fashioned white and yellow ones.) They also like to play in the copper feeder in the middle that I keep having to train the vine around. Obviously, the honeysuckle isn’t blooming now so I filled in the blanks with some help from a gardening catalog. The bare bones of the vine and a few leaves are still there, giving me a skeleton to hang the drawing on and the birds a place to hide out.
This drawing was also the first time I used masking fluid in a painting. Talk about something that does NOT smell wonderful. Ammonia, yuckkkkk!!! I used it to save the white for the flower clusters. They should have looked white and yellow, but I think the yellow tried to win out. Still, I swear in real life the drawing doesn’t look thaaaat yellow<cringe>, at least not as yellow as the scan seems to me.

Read More


The Art Journal Fridays prompt for Leap day was to take a leap and try something different.  I tried using oil pastels for the first time. I’m not sure if I really like them.  They felt like drawing with something that is a cross between a crayon and a tube of lipstick.  Very crude and lacking in any fine control.  Maybe if I was working on a larger scale that wouldn’t be an issue.  They are also very smudgy. That’s not a big problem since I’m used to smudges with charcoal, but I did end up using over 4 coats of fixative just to make the drawing safe to handle.  It just wouldn’t stop feeling gooey.  I read somewhere that oil pastels never really dry and can still shift years later, a quality I don’t want in a journal that gets handled a lot while it is being made.  I might try this medium again later, but I think it would only be for something very loose like gestures. I also won’t be using oil pastels inside a bound journal, yuckkk!  However, oil pastels might be good for mindless stress relief drawings that you do and trash…

Read More