Wednesday, May 13, 2015

peaceful mind

Art Journal time!

Today I put the finishing touches on this collage spread I'll just call "peaceful mind".  It's a state of mind that I long for, that I remind myself to keep seeking, even in the midst of storms and trials and major changes in my journey.  Unexpected paths I'm not prepared to go down.

Like most of my collage paintings, this one is done in stages: basically i do a bunch of wet stuff, let it dry.  more wet stuff, let it dry.  Repeat.

More specifically, my first stage here was playing with dye ink that I mixed with water and put in little spray bottles, then sprayed it on the pages.  One color, let it dry, then the other color.  Paint some more diluted dye on with a brush.  Ink up a large swirly stamp and stamp some random swirls across the page.  Then stencil on some question marks.

Let dry.

Pencil in a head shape.  Tear up an old vintage romance novel and start glueing the text fragments to the head shape, randomly.  Use plenty of mod podge to preserve and strengthen the surface of the delicate, old pages.  Let dry.

Paint on a light coat of white gesso, some mixed with blue acrylic paint.  Color in a gold-ish background for the hairline using watercolor crayons.  Smudge with water on a brush.

Go through magazines and collect images.  Whatever tells your story.  For me it was the storms outside of me, vs. the peaceful thoughts and things to cherish I can choose to keep inside of me.
Paste these images where they seem to belong, in and around the facial features you also drew in.

Don't forget to also add in words and phrases that speak for your heart.  For me, those were: thoughts and long journey (for the outside, stormy section), "peace", (stenciled in letter  by letter) , Live Your True Self, Life is About Moments, Mindful, a path to lasting peace, joy, and my own lettering of the phrase, "i can still be happy...(sort of)"...and most importantly, a Bible verse that spoke to me recently and encouraged me: "And the peace of God which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." (Phil. 4:7)

And that's it. 
What I love about doing collages like this is, by using random images that you find elsewhere, you can piece together things that can capture the abstract and surreal feel of a dream, either a daydream or a night dream.  Things that can be just plain ridiculous and fun and that make no sense when you try to explain it to someone, or those other weirdly connected dream stories that somehow make sense to your subconscious mind, like a spirit voice that is speaking to you about things you may need to know in the future, or are summaries of lessons directed to you that you never learned in the daylight hours.  

Or just plain weird stuff.  For example, my daughter just described to me the dream she had last night: She dreamed our family moved to another house, but it was also with another family, and there was another dad and about 20 other kids and she was saying to me, "mommy i don't feel comfortable with all these strangers", (normal for her shy personality) and that i was saying "it's ok, you'll get used to them."  Then she went on to describe how the house was kind of like in a mall, with neighbors all around but the "street" was more like a bouncy playground floor, etc, etc.

Anyway, thanks for letting me share this, and I hope you find a place to share your dreams, as well.  

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