Thursday, August 9, 2018

PLAY - Life Book 2018

So I haven't exactly been keeping up with all the lessons in Life Book. I've got more projects "in progress" than I care to admit and several lessons I haven't even watched yet. But I have been spending time creating! In addition to getting back into digi-scrapping, here are my recently completed projects:

The Life Book lesson below was titled "Mandalas of Positive Light" with Instructor Louise Gale.  It is one of my favorite pieces to date!  You start with a very bright watercolor background and then mute it with a lot of white gesso on top - thick in some places, thinner in others to vary how much color comes through.  Mine is still very bright compared to the instructors.  Other than some circle templates (think tracing bottle caps, cups, etc.) the mandalas are all hand drawn.  They are not perfectly even and it totally doesn't matter!  I showed this picture on my phone to Deanna while we were on retreat, explained the basic concept, and next thing I knew she was cranking out mandalas like crazy!

This next lesson goes waaaaaay back - week NINE - it was titled "Friends are the Flowers in the Garden of Life" (the quote used on the Instructor's version) with Instructor Effy Wild.  Starting with a painted gold background, then adding layers of mixed media, finally topped with hand-drawn flowers.  My attempts to color in the flowers with Tombow markers was an exercise in futility - the colors wouldn't show up.  I ended up using Posca paint pens which worked beautifully!  Regular acrylics would have worked as well I think, but I wasn't being fussy about this piece - I was just enjoying the process.  If I was being fussy, I would have to totally re-do the quote because my lettering (size and spacing) was just way off the mark.

Point is, the exercise alone was so much fun, I ended up doing a second version with a copper background (not really clear in the photo, but the background is a shiny metallic):

These following two pieces aren't Life Book lessons.  I just challenged myself while on vacation to create some watercolor paintings using photos I had taken as inspiration.  I bought a little 5.5 x 8" watercolor pad that is easy to travel with.  I made a small art kit (makeup bag size) including one small set of watercolors, Tombow markers, a couple of paint brushes, 2 graphite pencils, an eraser, and black and white Posca paint pens.  It really is amazing what you can create with such a limited set of supplies!

I finally got smart enough to start marking my work with the Life Book lesson week and instructor, so I don't have to go back to figure it out!  This mandala lesson was on using opposites (circles/squares) to create a cohesive whole.  It was fun and meditative! Done while on a work trip, also in the small watercolor book, also with limited supplies.  In fact, here I only used a couple of Tombow markers and the Posca paint pens.
This isn't a Life Book lesson, but it is from Tamara LaPorte - it's a mini class called "Sacred Inner Eye"  ($22.49 to purchase on it's own) and really gets into the finer points of drawing an eye - not meant to be entirely realistic.  Fantastic lesson!  Also completed on that work trip with the supply kit mentioned above.

These lessons are really stretching me and I'm learning so much - if you want to do sketching/drawing/painting, I can highly recommend Life Book... or anything that Tamara teaches!


Karen said...

Cheri, these are fantastic! Your artistic ability is amazing. I love the eye, the mandala and the gorgeous flowers you painted on your own!

alexa said...

Oh my goodness, you have been very creative indeed! And with limited supplies too ... I love your mandalas and your eye especially.

debs14 said...

Love those mandalas - I had a phase of drawing them a year or so back and they are just so relaxing to work on aren't they? now you've reminded me of them, maybe I will dust off the sketching pad and pencils are have another go!

Melissa said...

Wow, just WOW! You've definitely been creative. I really like the variety and how you're enjoying some creativity in the little book while traveling!

Patio Postcards said...

Amazing wonderful colourful creative - you have really expressed your gift in these pieces. Your marriage mandala is fantastic & yes just like marriage circle & squares working together to create the whole picture.

Carola Bartz said...

Your artwork is beautiful! You are quite talented!
I took Life Book two years in a row a while back and always fell behind and actually never finished the complete course. The good thing though is that you can download all the videos which I did - so if I want I can still do those lessons. If there was just some more time available...