Tuesday, July 3, 2012

at the speed of

I recently bought the book Art at the Speed of Life by Pam Carriker. It's been out for a while and there have been online groups who worked thru the book chapter by chapter. It was on my wish list of books but I hadn't been inspired to actually buy it until I had an about-to-expire 20% coupon for Barnes & Noble, of which there is a huge one in our local mall.

The main point of the book is that you can fit art into your regular life. Each chapter has a guest artist project, then Pam gives a speed-of-life version that gives a similar result in much less time. Every chapter also has essays and articles by Pam and various other artists on a variety of topics. I'm enjoying it and would recommend it simply for the projects and techniques. All the time saving tips are a bonus.

There are a lot of good ideas in the book and since I don't need much of a reason to make yet another journal of some sort, I made one of her 7 day journals. Actually it's nothing like hers, I guess, since I used a cover and didn't make it form one sheet of paper. I made 3 signatures from 140lb cold press watercolor paper, nice and thick so I can do all sorts of wet stuff to it. Made a spine of doubled upholstery fabric and covers from a corrugated cardboard from a box at work, glued the spine on and stitched the sigs thru the spine. Wa-la as they say in France.

Made a glaze from 1 part acrylic paint, one part gel medium and 2 parts water and glazed several spreads with a few different colors. I'm hoping the glaze doesn't have the stick-to-itself properties that a page painted in full strength acrylics does. We'll see.

For my first journal entry I chose a yellow spread, glued down some old book pages, added some raw sienna and gesso. I wanted to try the hand sanitizer transfer method so I chose a transparency of my mom at about 3 or 4 years old on a pony with her dad standing by. I tried various amounts of sanitizer gel but had no success getting the image to transfer. So I stuck it down with gel medium and moved on. I needed something on the left so found a pic of my great grandfather, father of my mom's dad, and made a gel transparency, one of my favorite techniques. 

Stamped some gesso circles using the tube from a roll of adding machine paper. After looking at it a while, I got out some turquoise paint and put some around the edges and in the centers of the white circles. Then I sat down with a black marker and doodled the circles, the edges, and some of the sequin waste stenciling I had added earlier. Gave it all a coat of gloss medium and varnish and called it done. Three generations here. I'm happy with it and plan to fill the journal with projects and techniques from Pam's book.


  1. Hello Leslie, I really love your art journal from start to finish, or at least the page you're showing. LOL... It's beatiful,the way you've used your family photos (transfered) in the journal is very lovey. I feel I can step into the page. Thanks so much for sharing. Have a great day! Until your next creation. hugs, Maria

  2. Love, love, love this - I started an art journal while on vacation but did not get as inspired by your I must say. J