The Documented Life Project art challenge for week 13 was to make a custom element. Melinda, the grandkids, and I each rode in a different direction in pursuing this challenge which fit in well with the journal prompt quote: “Ride the energy of your own unique spirit.” by Gabrielle Roth.
I wanted to carve my own stamp with the linoleum cutter I had purchased a long time ago and never got around to using. Not wanting to be overwhelmed in my first carving attempt, I used a simple little pink eraser. I drew a design on a piece of tracing paper with pencil and completely filled in the area I wanted as a stamp with pencil. Then I laid the penciled side of the paper on top of the eraser and rubbed over the backside of the paper to transfer the design to the eraser. Enough of the pencil lead markings transferred to the eraser so I could see where to carve. The smallest head for the linoleum cutter easily sliced through the eraser in very thin strips carving away the part I did not want in my stamp until I got more brave and cut away bigger chunks. My husband (who does woodcarving) said I should have started with straight lines! Eventually I got my design carved and tried it out.
After playing around with that stamp a while, I decided it wasn’t what I wanted for this challenge. So I carved another eraser stamp.
I covered my page with a light layer of blue and pink paint and then used my new stamp with a maroon ink to make several flower shapes all over the page. The colors were too intense, so a spread a light coating of white gesso over the page to tone it down. Then I tore up pieces of various scrapbook papers with blue, pink, purple and green colors and glued them to the page, layering on more paint, gesso with a honeycomb stencil, and stamped petals with my eraser stamp. Using a makeup sponge, I blotted green ink through various parts of a stencil to add greenery. The centers of the flowers were cut from scrapbook paper. To finish it off and add some highlights, I added some doodles with a white pen to the flowers and some leaves.
I’ve been saving coffee bags from our favorite coffee places and from some we have visited in our travels. I’ve seen people do pages about “surviving the elements” for this page, and that is what I was thinking about when I sat down to do this page. Coffee is how I survive the elements of each day. I was never a consistent coffee drinker until my last baby was born, and I needed a daily pick me up to stay awake. I used the inside silver part of a bag to make my mosaic coffee mug and parts of a couple bags to make the coffee and heart. I wrote the words and drew the coffee beans with a colored pencil.
The kids watched the video Rae-Missigman posted on her blog for this week’s challenge using stamps on tape and they decided right away they wanted to try it for their pages.