The one with the creative warm up

3 Aug

Happy Sunday,

I’ve recently discovered Rea Missigman, an artist down in Florida. Some of you may know her as part of the team that designs the Documented Life Project. In fact, that is where I was lucky enough to find her amazing work. I now follow her on facebook and pinterest (and  you should too!) as well as her blog. On Tuesdays, she posts 15 Minutes of Mixed Media and I have started using her videos as a creative warm up on those days I want to create, but need a warm up. Her work is vibrant and fun and I really enjoy it. And I’ve truly enjoyed creating using  her style. Below are 3 examples of my version of Rae’s 15 minutes of mixed media:

photo 2photo 1

photo 3

What do you think of my journal pages? Who is your favorite artist to use as inspiration?

See you next week,


The one with the Empowered Woman series

13 Jul

Good morning,

It’s been another busy week in the studio. I haven’t had time to document my progress, but I do have these 3 completed pieces to share with you. The first two are part of my new Empowered Woman Series. Both pieces were painted on my hand made granola bar box canvases. They measure about 6″ x 6″. I create these pieces with acrylic paints, water colors, drawing inks, and misc papers (background). I’d love to hear what you think!



Liz (WP)


This next piece is called a Worry Box. It’s made out of a tea tin and the idea is to write your worries and store them in the box. If they’re in the box, they won’t be in your head.

worry box (WP)

So, what do you think? Leave your comments below. And don’t forget to check out my artist page on Facebook.

See you next week!

The one with handpainted cards

6 Jul

Good afternoon. Before I started blogging, I read a lot of dos and donts about being a successful blogger. One thing I read over and over again was not to apologize when you miss a few posts. I think I’ve missed a few months. As I’m not big on excuesses, I won’t give you any. I will say that I have been acting though (my One Little Word for the year is ACT). I’ve started teaching a Creative Play Art Journal Workshop at the Turnip Green Creative Reuse. The Turnip Green has a grant with the Nashville Public library to provide art workshops and I have been fortunate enought to lead some of those as well. I’ve produced some new art for sale (some at the Turnip Green and some at Atmalogy).  And I’ve taken some time to create just for myself. Most recently, I have started an artist page on Facebook. If you’re so inclined, please check it out. If you like what you see, please follow my page. Don’t forget to click the drop down box (on the like tab) and click Get Notifications so you’ll see my posts on you wall. This week, I want to share some handpainted cards I just finished. These cards were inspired by Rae Missigman and they are a lot of fun to paint. Enjoy!

Since I’m a reuse artist, I used magazine pages for this project.

Adding detail…..

Finished cards

Finished cards

I’d love to know what you think of my cards. I’ll be back next week with some more new art pieces. Thanks for continuing to follow and read. Cheers, Michelle

The one with miscellaneous projects

20 Apr

Good morning and happy Sunday!

It’s a beautiful day outside which means I’m trying to decide how much time to dedicate to working on art inside and working outside in the garden. But first, let me share what I’ve been working on over the last week or so.

I put together another sample layout for my Art Journal Workshop next week (at the Turnip Green Creative Reuse). Our focus will be Gratitude. I was really pleased with this one!



Seats are still available so if you’re in Nashville and you want to come out and play with paint and paper, follow this link to register.

I started a new granola box canvas piece that will be going to Atmalogy soon. I’m really pleased that I’ve been selling some pieces there and Heather always encourages me to bring in new items.


I’ll share the finished project soon.

And finally,  I was fortunate to see a lecture and exhibit by Maggie Taylor  (and husband, Jerry Uelsmann) a while back out at MTSU. I fell in love with her work! It’s so whimsical and playful. This layout is 100 percent inspired by her work (or I guess when it’s finished I can say that). I will share this one when it’s complete as well.

journal1 Journal2 journal3I think the warm weather has won out. I’m going to go play in the garden.

Till next week,

The one with the new circle journal

6 Apr

Good morning and happy Sunday!

Wow, everything is blooming here in Nashville and my allergies are going crazy. Not too much going on in the art room this week due to feeling so blah! So today I’m going to be brief and share the new circle journal I am working on with a good friend.

She moved out to Clute, Texas last year to take an appointment at a United Methodist church (she is the senior pastor). I am happy that we have kept in touch since she moved. So when she asked if  I’d like to start a circle journal with her (like the one I have going with my mom) I had to think about it for about a second. It’s such a fun way to connect with someone.

Karney and me (I’m on the left) last year.

J2Here is Karney’s first layout. How lucky am I? Who else gets fun mail with poetry about what they mean to their friend? I’m not much of a poet, so I went with went with a collage…..

J3I used a dress pattern for the background. I added red and white circles using a peanut butter jar lid and a creamer lid. Some black painted boxes, patterned white circles from bubble wrap completed the background. After that, I added the focal elements. The frame around the girl is washi tape. It’s a simple layout, but I like the message.

Till next week,







The one with my first art journal workshop

30 Mar

Good morning and happy Sunday.

I think I see a bit of blue sky out there today. Which is really nice since it poured yesterday. Maybe it was Mother Nature’s way of honoring my first art journal workshop. Personally, I would have preferred sunshine.

First of all I have to say thank you to Kelly and the Turnip Green Creative Reuse for hosting my workshop series. Kelly is warm and welcoming and so generous to this new to the art scene artist. She’s really flexible and understanding that building an audience for these workshops takes time and is really a process all it’s own. I am really grateful to them for allowing me the space to grow as I learn the best way to share my art journaling with folks. They are fantastic people and I love being part of the community.

The lovely and talented Shelly was on hand at the TGCR yesterday to help me set up.  She volunteers at the TGCR and is a fantastic artist (and I’m kicking myself right now for not taking pictures of her work which is part of the current show there). If you’re in the Nashville area, go and check it out. She has several beautiful painted tile pieces that you will love! Best of all, she joined us for the workshop!

We started off by binding our journals. We used leftover posters I had from work and I showed them how to do a simple saddle stitch to bind the books. Workshop9They measure 8 1/2 by 11 when completed. After we applied a layer of gesso, we set the journals aside to work on our painted magazine pages. I’ve written about this before (here) but the idea is to get paint (color) down on the pages. We used Real Simple magazine pages. You can apply acrylic paint straight to their pages (no gesso required!). The paint doesn’t slide off like it would if they were glossy pages.


WkShp1They really enjoyed this step. I hear things like “this is so freeing” and “this is so much fun”. Oh and we discovered the best paint color ever – Bronze Yellow. It’s a Basic Liquitex color and we LOVE it. It blends well with everything!

While our magazine pages dried, we added the second layer of color to our journal covers. Using a few colors and a (gift card) pallet knife, we painted the backgrounds. We completed the covers by cutting out the focal elements and adding them to the covers. We used Tacky Glue.


Wkshp4The best part about creating in community? The conversations.  Playing with paint and paper while in a group seems to naturally encourage people to open up and share their stories. Its a great way to bond and get to know someone. We had a lot of laughs, shared some of our stories and were inspired by each others work. It was a fantastic day!

Next month, we will continue in these journals with a gratitude layout. Join us at 1pm on April 26th. I’ll have journals ready for you to create in! See you then.


The one where I announce my workshop series

23 Mar

Happy Sunday!

I don’t know about you, but March sure did come in like a lion in my house. I got sick (9 days) and since we share in our house, gave it to my hubs. I even missed the monthly Nashville Collage Collective event at the Turnip Green! I guess that’s way it feels like this month is flying by. Does anyone else feel that way?

Today I’m happy to report that I am (finally) feeling better; I can even breath through my nose again! And I am super excited to announce that I am officially teaching an Art Journal workshop series at the Turnip Green beginning next Saturday!!!!!!! Woo Hoo!!!!

In this four part series  we will be making our own art journal using up-cycled posters (thank you VU Divinity School!). I’ll show the group how to do a simple saddle stitch to bind the journals out of the posters. We’ll go from this:

journal 3

to this:

Workshop9After we finish binding the journals, we’ll decorate the covers using (more) recycled papers and acrylic paints. Here are a few samples:

journal 4

journal 5

and my most recent cover


We’ll meet again in April to create our next layout. In session two, we’ll work on a gratitude page. In May we will use magazine pages and acrylic paints to collage our layout. And finally, in June I will share how I use everyday items to create interesting backgrounds for my layouts.

Here is the schedule (all session are at the Turnip Green):

March 29 from 1 – 3 pm   Create journal and decorate covers
April 26 1 – 3 pm Gratitude layout
May 24 1 – 3 pm Collage layout
June 28 1 – 3 pm Creating interesting backgrounds

If you’re in Nashville and you’d like to join us, reserve your spot by emailing Kelly

I hope to see you there!