I really wanted to post some art today and have several paintings in the works, but since none are ready to be shown, I decided to dig up some older work. These two pages were done in my art journal several years ago as part of a fun little self-challenge.
I took my journal and a few favorite supplies ; gel medium, an old brush, scissors, and pens to Starbucks and challenged myself to make a spread using only these supplies and whatever I could find in the coffee shop. I tore up some of their pamphlets and glued them as the backgrounds then collaged over them with their napkins to soften it. I also cut up a paper coffee cup, coffee sleeve, stirrer, straw and a gift card to create both collages, along with the straw wrapper and tea tag for the second page.
Most of my time was spent on the bird page and I never really liked this second page. It just seemed incomplete, with too much going on and like things were just floating around, disconnected. I loved the simplicity of the bird page but didn't know how to fix this page. I didn't touch it once home, because my challenge was to finish it at the coffee shop using only those supplies.
Finally when I looked at it again last week, I decided heck with my challenge, I wanted to fix it so I liked both pages in the spread.
I needed to simplify the page so I got out my gesso and lightly covered most of the background, to get rid of unnecessary elements. I then grabbed a pen and scratched lines all over to unify it even more, and added a few more doodles.
There. That's better.
Now I can finally look at this spread without feeling torn for loving one side and hating the other. But now I look at the bird page and think...hmmm...just a touch of paint would really make this even better...
No, no, no...not part of the plan! Walk away! It's done!
I remember having a blast working on it in the coffee shop. It can be very freeing to use limited supplies... and fun! And I'm not sorry for "cheating" a bit on my little challenge. I learned a lot from it then, and now, and I think it might be time for another little challenge soon.
Have you done anything fun lately to challenge yourself?