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07/31/10
30 Journals 30 Days: You
Filed under: General, Quilt Art, Mixed Media, Painting, Creativity, Inspiration, Art Journal, Creative Every Day
Posted by: Mary @ 8:32 am


Connie of Dirty Footprints Studio has invited everyone to participate in the 30 Journals 30 Days project today, July 31. Every day for the month of July she has interviewed a different art journaler and posted it to her blog. Today is our turn to share our enthusiasm for this creative mode of expression.

How long have you been Art Journaling? It has been about a year now since I finally got started, but I have kept written journals since age 14 and drawing sketchbooks since age 30. I have also been painting watercolors off and on since age 30.

How has Art Journaling impacted, changed, or enhanced your life? Art journaling has allowed me to be more spontaneous and free in expression. It has given me the opportunity to try new things and in a format that I love - books. It is very nice to have a record of my work in one place where I can flip through the pages. A very important aspect of art journaling is that it allows me to combine different media in one vehicle - painting, drawing, writing, photography, collage. It has also been a more portable and easy way to bring my art with me wherever I go - even if that’s just out on the front porch or relaxing on the couch. Art Journaling lets you work just about anywhere.



What are a few of your favorite Art Journaling materials? It is hard to choose just a few as I love all art supplies. First would be my paint brushes and I keep my watercolor and acrylic brushes in separate small fishing tackle boxes with their respective paints. Next would be papers and ephemera of all different kinds and a good pair of scissors. Mark making materials like pitt pens, gel pens, and colored pencils are important. And I can’t live without mat gel medium, UHU glue, gluestick, an old credit card scraper, and things to add texture like bubble wrap, plastic canvas, and a comb. I really love fiber and related items too - fabric, threads, yarns, beads.

Who are some of your favorite art journalers? This is another challenging question as basically I like everything art journaling that I see, even the things that don’t appeal to me directly. Because it is a means of personal expression, I can accept and understand that the person is taking me inside their world. My point of discovery for this type of artistic expression was Somerset’s Art Journaling magazine in Borders and I read these magazines over and over again, never tiring of the images shared inside. Since then I have discovered an explosion of art journalers online which adds to the sense of community. All that being said, here are a few of my favorites:
Connie, Dirty Footprints Studio
Lynne Perella
Pam Carriker
Teesha Moore
Daisy Yellow
Diana Trout




What kind words of encouragement would you say to an Art Journal newbie? The hardest part is getting started. Treat yourself to an issue of Somerset’s Art Journaling magazine, start clicking around art journalers’ blogs and YouTube videos, and get inspired. Gather together some supplies and a sturdy art journal that work for you. When you are ready, start with one page and don’t worry about finishing it. Then start another page. Go back and forth and work on your pages. Do what pleases you and won’t worry about making the pages “perfect”. Letting go will come with time. Remember that you are doing this for yourself… this is for you. Later you can choose what to share with others.

Where can we contact you… give us some link LOVE!
My blog is at maryart.macilvain.com
My web site is at www.macilvain.com

Short Bio
My grandfather gave me my first camera when I was 8 years old and I have long enjoyed capturing that special moment on film. I learned to sew on my mother’s old Singer sewing machine at the age of 11. Quilting and sewing have been a passion for many years because of my love for fabric and all things fiber. Watercolor painting and drawing is something that I do when inspiration comes. Recently I have been getting into scrapbooking, book arts, collage, and mixed media. I absolutely love books and read quite a bit and also enjoy trying new things.

I live in a small town in the northeast or New England part of the United States. My son and daughter are both in college and we have a mischievous cat named Tangerine who was adopted from the Humane Society animal shelter. My career world has touched many areas including computer science, research, web design, graphic design, administrative, marketing, and volunteering. The best part of all has been the people I’ve met along the way.

Enjoy in the doing and be happy in following your own path to express yourself creatively.
Mary




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07/29/10
Art Is You
Filed under: General, Mixed Media, Creativity, Inspiration, Art Journal, Creative Every Day
Posted by: Mary @ 6:48 pm

Last week I discovered that there is an art retreat in Connecticut in October and I’m going! I am so excited! Art Is You is the annual east coast art retreat and promises to be a wonderful mixed media adventure with many creative spirits. There was a local get together this past Saturday and it turned out that there were 4 people at the brunch who I knew, 3 of whom I hadn’t seen in close to 10 years at a doll makers group! Connecticut is a small state but it was still really cool to have our paths converge once again. What a happy moment for me with both new and old (who are you calling old? LOL) friends sharing their artwork and their stories. This is the art journaling page I created when I returned home to celebrate the special and magical day. It was like floating on air.



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07/10/10
You’ve Got Mail
Filed under: General, Mixed Media, Creativity, Inspiration, Drawing, ATCs
Posted by: Mary @ 9:30 am

On Wednesday night I received not one but three exciting and beautiful pieces of mail. It was so awesome to receive such wonderful gifts and I was truly amazed and grateful.

an incredible paper doll by Ginette from the True North Arts Paper Doll Swap
a lovely ATC card plus postcard from a swap with Dindie in Indonesia
a card from my brother in Tennessee


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07/05/10
Art Journaling Takes Off
Filed under: General, Book Arts, Mixed Media, Painting, Creativity, Inspiration, Art Journal, Creative Every Day
Posted by: Mary @ 7:08 pm

Pockets, flaps, and envelopes were added to the pages begun in the art journaling workshop at Dirty Footprints Studio a few weeks ago which was a lot of fun. The pages are starting to look more interesting now that details are being added to the layers of texture. The pages I have been using for this workshop were separate sheets of watercolor paper folded in half. Today I sewed them together in signatures of one page each so that I can paint on the reverse sides as double pages. It looks so cool!



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