Wednesday 5 August 2015

Sweet as Honey

The lovely Susan Wojtkowski from Irreversibly Moi has invited me back as one of the guest artists for the Fabulous and Free Art journaling Challenge. The theme is "Paint and Scraps".

My creation for the journal spread was inspired by a recent trip home to Ireland to care for a loved one. I came to realise even though our lives are very busy and it is a long way to travel from Australia, spending time with family is even more important in times of crises. My journal spread is about working together and looking at the positives to bring about the best possible outcome, instead of dwelling on the negatives.

Very often with mixed media, we are left with lots of paper scraps on our art table. Instead of throwing them in the garbage, I wanted to show how to incorporate even the smallest of paper scraps into the artwork. I thought warm earth tones would really suit the feel of this art journal spread.

I brought out an old favourite in the form of a synthetic sponge to create the background. It is not only quick but gives a real honeycomb look, don't you think? 

I went through my folder of scrap paper searching for papers with lots of texture and interest to suit my hexagonal pieces. I even included three hexagonal pieces cut from dictionary pages that have the words and descriptions for Change, Family and Time. Brown watercolour marker created a shadow and made the pieces stand out more.

After stamping with script stamps, I spread textured paste mixed with acrylic paint randomly over the pages and squished my hexagonal cut scrap pieces into a honeycomb pattern.

The bumble bee girl was painted with acrylics and watersoluble crayons. Details on her beehive hat were enhanced with a watercolour marker. I added flecks of metallic blue in her eyes. I thought giving her blue eyes would be a nice contrast to the warmer tones of the overall spread. The feelers were added to her beehive hat as a cute accessory. Back to the dictionary pages for her wings, which includes words associated with the bumble bee and then a light blush of colour completes them.

Once the girl was finished, I went around the double page spread stencilling flowers with acrylic paint. Hole punch scraps in various sizes were used for the middle of several of the flowers. On the first page, I stuck down the bumble bee and honey bee silhouettes adding some embossing powder to mimic pollen. On the opposite page, I drew three honey bees buzzing around the girl and outlined them with a black marker. 

I painted some oozing honey and then exaggerated the drips with sepia mod podge dimensional magic. After transferring the quote and going over it with a black marker, I gave sparkle to the painted dots around the pages with a gold paint marker.

So there you have my "Paint and Scraps" challenge creation. Also you have an excuse for not throwing out all those paper scraps, magazine pages or old book pages! I love how all the layers turned out, there is something to savour in every texture and element. I hope you like it too.

Until next time, Happy Creating!


  1. I Love everything about this. Wonderful detail!

    1. Thanks Debbie for stopping by and leaving your sweet comments (pun intended). It was a lovely piece to work on, without doubt I am a details girl at heart. x

  2. This is such a great piece Serena!! Love it :) xxA

    1. Thanks Amira, I am happy you like it, working on it certainly tugged at my heartstrings, but as they say "art is healing". x

  3. Serena, what a treat to read this blog, you have transported us into a lovely place.
    The reason for this story and the feeling behind it make it even more special, and you have captured the community and spirit of helping one another of the bee hives.
    That background, oh boy, it is honeycomb at its best! Just this morning I was looking at a container with honeycomb that we have in the pantry, and seeing your background was just like seeing it again!
    I love her face, her stunning eyes, and all the elements that you included on this page.
    I particularly love the mixing of paint and paper cuts, it creates wonderful textures.
    So glad that you were invited to participate again, this is a treasure!

    1. Thanks Marta for your continued support and wonderful comments. A little piece of my heart and soul went into this one. I took my time with it, enjoying the process at it went along. What a coincidence with the honeycomb! also one of life's great pleasures. x

  4. I use bees in a lot of my painting. It all started with my hometowns local festival called Honeyfest. I love your pages. I would like to use your ideas in one of my paintings. It will be loosely based on this one. It is really good. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thanks Paula for stopping by and leaving your lovely comments. I am happy for you to base your painting on my art, it would be nice if you could put a reference or link back to my blog. I look forward to seeing what you come up with. Happy Creating! :)