How to Find Inspiration For Your Art

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Good morning everyone! I have been busy planning a whole series of informative art posts for your enjoyment, in addition to the occasional mixed media project tutorial, and just general sharing of my latest art journal pages. Last month (wow, has it already been a MONTH??!), I shared with you an article I wrote about how to get started art journaling. This month I’d like to talk about how and where I find inspiration for my art.

There are so many sources of inspiration out there. You could go online and find all sorts of beautiful projects. Personally, I am a Pinterest addict and have tons of ideas pinned there for later use. But where else can you find inspiration? You would be surprised at how much inspiration you can find right in your own home. I find that if I take a moment to look at my everyday surroundings in a different way, I can find all sorts of cool things right in front of me. Here are a few of my favorite everyday sources for inspiration:

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1. Music and Song Lyrics–this is probably a pretty obvious one, but I LOVE listening to music when I am trying to get inspired. It relaxes me and helps me to capture the mood of whatever I am working on. I love song lyrics also, and frequently use them on my journal pages.

2. Book Covers–I acknowledge that I am a total bibliophile. Even in this digital age, I still absolutely love going to the bookstore and buying books. I always have a huge stack of them next to my bed. Not only are the books a great source of inspiration, but have you stopped to really check out the covers of the books? Look at the fonts used, the images, the layout. Try browsing your bookshelves and see what kind of cool things you can find.

3. Product Packaging–This may sound a little strange, but I was cleaning my bathroom and noticed the Febreeze can sitting there. The colors and patterns were so pretty to me! Then I started digging around some more and realized there is a lot of great art on the packaging and containers of all sorts of things I had sitting around. This is not limited to just your pretty Bath and Body Works packages. Look at the packaging for your art supplies (embellishments, paper packs, etc.). Check out your kitchen pantry, puzzle boxes, bags from stores, gift bags, food wrappers and containers. Look for interesting designs, patterns, and fonts.

4. Check Your Closet–I found these vintage Enid Collins purses in my closet. I used to collect them. I was inspired to create this project:
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Also check out your accessories (scarves, purses, hats) and jewelry.



5. Check the Kid’s Rooms–My artwork tends to be pretty girly, and lucky for me I have 4 girls to pull inspiraton from! My youngest daughter especially. Check out the cute saying on her lunchbox, the colorful banner I made to put in her room, and her awesome elephant backpack. I can see more mixed media elephant paintings in my future!

6. Home Decor–Chances are you have some pieces that you love in your home. I have these mirrors that hang in my front entry hall. I realized that I have a stencil that is very similar that would look great with that red. I also found some plates with a pattern I plan to copy.

7. Other Sources–Children’s or adult’s clothing, album or CD cover art, posters, and magazine covers.

As you can see, there are so many things right in your very own home that can inspire you. All it takes is looking at these everyday items in a different light. Remember, you are looking for fonts, patterns, placement, and overall design of these objects. I challenge you to find an everyday object that inspires you to create something amazing. If you have any other suggestions for everyday inspiration, or a project inspired by a household item, I’d love if you’d share in the comments below!


Consider the Alternative….

Good morning everyone! Today I would like to share a mixed media canvas I created inspired by my fellow Frog Dog Studio DT member, Sanna Lippert. Sanna created this gorgeous canvas using our May kit:


You can view a tutorial on how she created this canvas here.

Using her canvas as inspiration, I created the following canvas. I used my favorite go-to color scheme and scraps of paper I had in my stash, as well as a few cut up pieces of Gelli prints.


And a few close ups:



Click below to view links to the other inspiration pieces. This was such a fun hop!

I hope you all enjoy your week!

Scribbly Birds Mixed Media Canvas-Surround Yourself With Friends

This tutorial and project were created for Frog Dog Studio using the May kit.

Good morning! Today I have a canvas project tutorial to share with you. This is one of my personal favorite projects–it was fun and easy to do. Let’s get started!

To begin, I used an 8 x 10 canvas board covered with a light coat of gesso. I used several shades of blue paint (including the one in the kit) and a brayer to lightly spread the paint around.

Next, I laid down a stencil and used the liquid chalk ink from the kit to create a light background pattern.

Using stencils, spray ink, and distress paints I created a few layers on the background.

I went around the edge of the whole board with gold Gelato and rubbed it in with my fingers. Then, I added a little bit more texture with spray ink and stencils.

Using the dropper in my sepia ink, I loosely sketched in some tree branches. I did this by just starting at the edge of the canvas and slowly dragging the dropper across the canvas. You can squeeze more ink out to make the branches thicker, or just spread sections that are already thick to add thinner branches.

I set the canvas aside to dry and pulled out a sheet from the vellum book in the kit. Using the new Dina Wakley stamps (which I LOVE!), I stamped the bird images then colored them in using a mixture of the oil paint crayons, oil paint medium, and watercolor crayons. I wanted a very soft blended feel.

Since this has a very springtime feel to it, I thought I’d make the tree sort of a cherry blossom by adding some paint through a circle stencil along the branches.

I fussy cut the birds and attached them to the canvas using matte medium. Then I added some colored glitter paste to the birds just for a little extra sparkle and texture. I also put a quote from my stash.

And here is the final product!

How to Create Mixed Media Wine Charms

This project was created for Frog Dog Studios using their kit supplies.

Good morning everyone 🙂 This bonus project I created combines two of my favorite things: mixed media art and wine! These wineglass charms are so easy and fun to create. They also make great gifts (Mother’s Day is just around the corner!) Let’s get started.

To begin, I selected several of the Tim Holtz Fragments from the kit to work with. I covered this first one with some matte medium and the Alumidust powder. I swirled it around in the medium, adding in some of the gold ink from the kit. I used the end of a paintbrush to create the swirl texture, then set it aside to dry. I also added a word and a piece of scrap paper from my collage drawer.

I continued in this manner, using different bits of collage pieces from my stash and from previous kits (love that tissue paper from an older kit!)

When these were dry, I did some light stamping just to add some texture to the background and create a distressed look. The stamp I used had sheet music. Be sure to use StayZ On type ink if you do this. You don’t want it to smear everywhere when you move on to the next step. I also went around the edges with some more of the gold ink from the kit.

Next, I mixed up a batch of Amazing Clear Cast Resin and added some Alumilite Metallic Gold powder. Then, using an old small brush, I very lightly coated each piece with the resin. The gold powder gave each piece a really cool aged look and made them all look like a set, even though I used different collage elements for each one. Make sure when you are working with the resin to work on top of a white plastic garbage bag. The resin won’t stick to it, so if you over pour or spill a little it won’t stick. Plus it makes for easy clean up! I use a paper plate under my trash bag so I can move my project around if I need to.

After allowing the pieces overnight, they were ready for the finishing touches. I found these wire stemware hoops at Hobby Lobby. They were pretty cheap. I also had some larger beads leftover from my Titanic Inspired Tin project. I’m not sure what I was thinking at first, but I just put the beads and the fragments right onto the stemware hoop. Then I realized that the fragment wouldn’t lay flat (duh) so I went back and attached a jump ring to the fragment, then attached the fragment to the hoop. It worked perfect and now lays completely flat. Of course this was done after I had already taken my final pics so you won’t see the jump rings in the pictures below.