I’ve been working with paint and paper and other stuff all together (the fancy term for that is “Mixed Media”) to make a Collage Journal Cover and wanted to share what I came up with. You can download the 7-page PDF tutorial for full instructions with pictures here.
A Project to Get Moving
A kind friend gave me this little roughly 5 x 7 notebook from the dollar store. It was just the nudge to get me started!
While you’ll find more information in the tutorial, the gist of it is that I removed the covers from the notebook and painted them (both sides) with a metallic bronze acrylic craft paint. Then using the Steampunk Time Passing set of four tags, I glued two on each cover.
Fun With Paint
The next step was the fun part: crackle painting! Instead of commercial crackle medium, I used plain white glue as the medium and then over-coated that with cream acrylic paint.
Finishing Up and Moving On
Next came embellishments and final touches. Last, I sealed the whole thing with spray sealer and put it back together. It was a fun project – not too involved but very satisfying. The perfect thing to get moving again!
Feel free to share this tutorial with anyone you think will like it, but please don’t use it commercially or claim ownership of it. If you liked this and found it helpful, I’d love to hear from you and learn about your project.
We’ve been talking about creative practice and how creativity can be learned and strengthened. You can be more creative with practice – even if you don’t think you have the time. Here are three easy ways to get started today!
Doodle something, anything
It doesn’t have to be fancy, just making random marks on a piece of scrap paper is a fast, easy and accessible way to start creating. Doodling can help you focus on a task that may otherwise have your attention wandering or it can give your subconscious mind (where a lot of creative thought happens) a way to signal ideas. Don’t hold back – doodle away!
Don’t just sit there trying to come up with an idea. Get moving in whatever way is available to you: take a walk, stand by your chair, dance around the room. Physical movement has been shown to have positive effects on creativity and is good for you too!
Play, simple play
This one is closely related to moving around but adds the element of playfulness. Keep a selection of toys around to play with. They can be kid toys, like Legos or Play-Doh, or grown up toys, like fancy wind ups and art models; it’s your choice. Doing something with your hands is good for the brain – and fun too!
There’s a lot more to a deep and evolving creative practice, but taking small creative steps everyday is the start! What do you do to practice creativity? Tell me about it!
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Creativity is a skill – Practice, and You’ll Get Better
I think the idea of having a creative practice and moving forward in small consistent ways is overlooked today. We’re inundated with images, stories and achievements of other creatives that make it seem that these things just spring into being in one dramatic creative act. We see and hear without context so the creative work that went into something is submerged beneath a glossy presentation. It happens so often in our daily lives, in the stores and online that we lose sight of the reality that to create is to work.
But, it’s not drudgery! Creative work is joyful work – it’s being engaged and alive and present with yourself – your best self. Sure, sometimes you’ll swear and walk away in disgust, but occasionally time itself will stand still and you’ll look at what you’ve made with wonder at how it came to be.
That beauty is the fruit of your creative practice.
So, how do you practice creativity? Like most things that you think of practicing – piano, yoga, soccer – creative practice is performed frequently, with intention and with high standards regarding the results. Creative practice can be the smallest action to the largest: from carefully preparing a gorgeous Bento box lunch to designing a large showy perennial flower garden.
The key is that the small creative acts support the large ones. Making that pretty lunch reinforces the skills necessary to tackle the much larger project of a garden. The elements of planning, material selection, color and texture considerations, composition and presentation are common across many creative projects.
Everyday creativity adds up to a creative life.
What large and small ways do you practice your creativity and how could that be better? Let me know – I’d love to hear from you!
I’ve been thinking about you lately – I’m starting to wonder when you get to do something just for you. Yes, you. I know you’re busy, oh so busy, doing all the things for everyone else but we both know that’s not cutting it anymore.
What About Me?
We talked about creativity being something you practice everyday but when you’re sunk under the weight of everyone’s cares, it can be hard to even see the slender thread of your creative spirit running through your life.
But, creativity is expressed a thousand ways – both small and large – throughout a day and a life. Look for the small, yet so meaningful, ways to express your creative spirit in your day.
Take a minute, an hour, a day and make something – anything you like – just to make yourself smile. It’s a small but meaningful start.
Creating = Joy! It really is that simple.
What have you done for yourself lately? I’d love to know!
Shine Your Light!
PS The Pop Up Project creative party is a fun (and free) way to get started making something. Check it out!