Saturday, September 27, 2014

Fond du Lac Barcamp & Art Journaling

I attended my first barcamp at Sept. 20th, 2014 at Marian University's Stayer Center in Fond du Lac. I facilitated an Art Journaling session. I think next time I will name it Visual Journaling instead. As “art” seems to imply some type of “artistic” talent needed.

It is an experience hard to describe. To start, this is their facebook description “ …a participant-generated idea swap meet for the infocurious. It's an unconference, folks!”
Here is the link to their website -

This group of people was very diverse and included computer based technology enthusiasts, educators, visual artists, and performing artists.

From Wikipedia “Although the format is loosely structured, there are rules[19] at BarCamp. All attendees are encouraged to present or facilitate a session or otherwise contribute to the event.[17]Everyone is also asked to share information and experiences of the event via public web channels, including blogs, photo sharing, social bookmarking, Twitter, wikis, and IRC. This encouragement to share is a deliberate change from the "off-the-record by default" and "no recordings" rules at many invite-only participant driven conferences. It also turns a physical, face-to-face event into a 'hybrid event' which enables remote online engagement with BarCamp participants”.
Thanks to Mel Kolstad for the above picture.

I jotted down some notes while attending the sessions. Unfortunately I didn’t have my current journal and had to resort to working in my “Fragmented” journal instead. It took several tries to print a quality picture on my laser printer. (see first photo). To waste less paper I printed on both sides. To further lessen waste I added bits and pieces to other journal pages.

Three salamanders crossed my path on the way to Barcamp and another one after I arrived home. They, along with a waste copy of the first photo in this post, were the inspiration for this page.

I added some different shades of gray colored pencils to give a little more depth to the salamanders.

A journal page from my Relief Printing session facilitated by my friend Mel Kolstad and Beekeeping session by

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Quick Starts – Art Journaling

I was having a hard time getting inspired to create a journal spread. I had flipped through 7 magazines and nothing was clicking. I was wishing that I could attend a journaling class or get together with another artist and journal. I needed something to get me started! And there it was…


I cut apart the words and rearranged them to fit a parrot that I remembered seeing earlier.
Next came the phrase “A RIDDLE, OUTRAGE OR SUPERB PIECE OF WORK”? A perfect description to my art journaling. I place it where the line on the “A” crossed and above the part of the “S” so that you could still read the word “STARTS”.


Some paint to start the process of making it my own.

A magazine picture that I had clipped out a previous day that was laying in my stack of magazines. The birds would make a nice addition to my parrot.

I cut apart the picture to fit on the word “QUICK’'. Then find places for the parts that I cut off. This helps to tie the whole spread together.

I extend the floral design and add a string for the parrot to pull. Quick journaling of thoughts in my head. Sign and date and it’s done!
A riddle, outrage or superb piece of work? Smile

Thursday, September 4, 2014

War - The Denominator

I saw some broken toy soldiers on the internet. An idea for an assemblage on WAR was born. Months later I did a search and chose to buy these 3 figures. I wanted each figure to be as diverse as possible from the others to cover a broader range of topics. The figures are each from different eras in time, but the common denominator is war. What they all have in common is they are broken and represent childhood or innocence.
I chose the rider on his broken horse to reveal that war not only affects mankind, but the animal kingdom and much broader all life.
The Indian’s foot is broken off. He represents a culture I know little about and their repercussions of war.
The soldier kneeling has suffered great consequence but is still in a shooting position. Perhaps beyond all reasons of war he as an individual has a family to protect.

The next piece for consideration was this round rusty cylinder that my son found in the woods and gave to me. It reminds me of the large end of a barrel and emptiness.

I needed a substrate for the assemblage. After trying a couple of newer wooden boxes I settled on one of my wood casting patterns. I turn it in all directions to find the best position.

Each figure has it’s own compartment and own agenda as they are separated by time.

I also strive to arrange the components in a visually pleasing placement.

Below this figure is the ornamental escutcheon around preconceived riches or prize, but it is covering a hole in the substrate.

I like the rays on this washer.  I chose to enhance rather than cover up this hole with a large brass eyelet.

This hole represents the tiny perspective we have of the giant circle of war.

I painted the recess in the wood casting pattern a darker black to better showcase the toy soldiers.
I have found that words have many definitions and sometimes the opposite of their original intent. So I have included these definitions for my work.

Denominator - the part of a fraction that is below the line and that functions as the divisor of the numerator.
Preconceive - to form a conception or opinion of beforehand, as before seeing evidence or as a result of previously held prejudice.
Substrate - the base on which an organism lives.
Escutcheon - a flat piece of metal for protection and often ornamentation, around a keyhole, door handle, or light switch.