If you've never heard of 29 Faces
, it's a challenge created and hosted a couple of times a year by Ayala Art
. As the title suggests, you create 29 faces - any type of face, created using any medium - the only rule is that a face must be the main focus of the piece. I've watched people sharing their #29faces for a couple of years and wanted to join so this time, I decided to have a go at Ayala's February challenge and see how many I'd manage. I also decided to draw rather than paint, since I thought that would be quicker for me. I only managed 9 out of the 29… In retrospect, it was probably a bit daft of me to attempt the challenge at the same time as the Soul Food class was underway but it was still fun, and there's always next time, right?! These are the 9 faces I drew:
Soul Food at Community Thrive
got off to an awesome start and the classroom and Facebook group have continued to buzz with happy participants sharing their work, and encouraging and supporting each other. Many of the teachers have also been playing along with the twice-weekly lessons and more people have continued to sign up and bring new energy to the discussions. Registration for this round closes at the end of March but we've already started planning the menu for Soul Food 2015.
Below are a selection of pages from my own lessons, as well as things I've created in response to some of the others - with other projects in progress and waiting to be finished! The diversity of the lessons and different teachers' styles has been such a treat to witness and play along with, and the group has grown into a really warm and friendly community.
I posted about this on Facebook but if you didn't see, I'm happy to share again that Connie Hozvicka has invited me to teach in for the Spring 2014 issue of 21 Secrets
. The format of this art journaling extravaganza is changing from a ning-hosted community to a downloadable e-book, with the first/Spring 2014 issue accessible from April 1st - no joke!
The real benefit of the change is that rather than having access for just a few months, you'll be able to download the e-book, have full and immediate access to all of the content, and be able to play and repeat all 21 workshops ad infinitum. You'll also be able to join the teachers and fellow participants in a private 21 Secrets group on Facebook and/or a private Flickr group where you can share your work.
It's fantastic value for 21 different workshops rolled into one and even though the format is changing, the Spring issue will still be rich in both visual [videos and photos] and written content. I'm putting together a comprehensive workshop called "Outside, Inside" and will incorporate different journaling styles and media, as well as sharing my own techniques and secrets - I hope you'll join me...
Some days, the bright, smiling face we present to the world masks the darker, more desolate feelings that we may be dealing with inwardly. Our journal is a perfect place to explore this "Outside, Inside" contrast: to express what we are concealing and in doing so, find some release or healing. For this class, we'll create a folded/window page that illustrates our "Outside/Inside" faces and feelings - TWO spreads that contrast the pretty with the raw.
It's all too easy sometimes to remember the negatives and although 2013 wasn't one of my best years, it did have its positives and it's those that I'm focussing on for this round-up. Highlights included participating in two blog-hops for Artistcellar
for the launch of their new signature series stencil sets
designed by Jane Davenport and Chris Cozen. These are some of the pieces I created with Jane's "Jane Girls" series, and Chris's "Playful Pods" series:
Also pictured below is a journal page I created with a StencilGirl
stencil when asked to guest post on the new StencilGirl Talk blog. I recorded a video of myself creating the page - you'll find the full post here
, where you can also download a free copy of the background PDF that I gifted to StencilGirl Talk readers.
Another happy highlight was learning that Dawn Devries Sokol
had selected some of my journal pages to include in her new 1000 Journal Pages book, due for publication in Spring 2015. It's rare for me to be happy with my work, so this was a huge boost for me - as was having Jane Parfitt, owner of First-View Gallery
at Stourhead National Trust house and gardens agree to show a few of my paintings, with the possibility of showing more in future.
So whilst 2013 had its health and work related disappointments, perhaps on reflection, the highs were higher than the lows were low. And speaking of not always being happy with my own work, I'll finish by sharing some favourite paintings of mine from last year…