What a Wonderful Idea Collage

Multi-Layered Art Journal Page

I hope you have a very happy holidays!  While this is not holiday themed, it is a recent art journal page.  The right side page is not quite finished.

Printable Winter Coloring Pages

Happy Winter!  I made a coloring sheet to celebrate the season.  Feel free to print and color.  If you do use this, send me a pic so I can see your finished page!

Flower Art Journal Page

Flower collage on an art journal page

Art is Basic

Watercolor Bird #7

A collage in my art journal

Art is Basic

Watercolor Bird Painting #6

Triangle Collage

Watercolor Bird Painting

This is a recent watercolor painting I completed.  #5 in my series of watercolor birds.  Read more to see detail shots.

Beautiful Things Art Journal Collage

Here is a recent art journal page.  

Painted Circles inspired by Kandinsky

This is a circle painting "study" in my art journal/sketchbook.  I was inspired by the circle paintings by Wassily Kandinsky, a favorite artist of mine.

Triangle Paper Collage

Pam Garrison had a very fun art workshop on Creative Bug with different collage and doodling techniques.  Here is one of the triangle collage pages I made.

Alcohol Inks on Yupo Paper

These are experiments of alcohol inks on Yupo translucent paper.

An Art Journal Page In Steps

Would you like to see me create an art journal page with a quote in steps?  Of course you do!  Here goes.

Creative Sketchbooking

A photo posted by Marcia Beckett (@marciadotcom38) on
I signed up for the free trial of Creative Bug to take Pam Garrison's Creative Sketchbooking class. Here is the first exercise.

Flying Koala Bear Collage

I made this flying koala bear collage to show my art camp kids what they could do with magazines and paint markers.  It spoke to me because of the mama koala and her kid on the back.

Artsy Project Life Cards

I have some more colorful, fun Project Life cards in my shop.  I wanted to make my scrapbooking artsier (is that a word?) and more creative and fun... so I took some of my watercolor paintings and collages and printed them on to miniature cards which are perfect for Project Life and scrapbooking with pockets.  These little cards are also fun to write little messages on to tuck into gifts or you can use them as a launching spot in your art journal. 


Sunshine Quote - Watercolor Painting

If you like my artwork, be sure to visit my Etsy shop where I have some original Project Life cards, some miniature art cards, greeting cards, postcards and collage packs.  It truly makes my day when someone purchases my art. 

An Interview with Margaret Peot

Today I have the pleasure of sharing with you an interview with Margaret Peot, author of the new book Stencil Craft.


Earlier this week I wrote a book review, with the chance to win copies of this book (there is still time to enter).  You can see that blog post here:  Stencil Craft Book Review and Giveaway.

Since I am an elementary art teacher, Margaret is also going to share a fun project to do with little children.

1. What is your art background?
I have a BFA in Painting and Fibers from Miami University of Ohio, with further study at The Center for Book Arts, NYU and SVA.

2. What advice do you have for someone who is just getting started using stencils?
The easiest way to get started is to start playing around with found stencils. Collect leaves of different sorts, paper doilies, sturdy ferns from a florist, tape, Avery sticker dots. Make compositions with them on paper—a sticker dot for a moon, a fern for a tree, doily lacy for clouds in the sky, painting tempera paint with a brush or sponge in and around the found objects. This will give you ideas for stencils to cut, too. Maybe you’ll decide you need a howling wolf stencil in your moon and tree composition, and have to design and cut it out!

3.  What do you like about stencils?
I like stencils for their reusability. I have some bird and paw print stencils that I cut out years ago that I have used to print holiday cards, tea towels for gifts, and totes for sale. And in my job as a costume painter for Broadway shows, I use and reuse stencils all the time: a texture that might have been originally cut to be the shadows on a fan coral might be found in a floral border in one show and in the texture of flying monkey wings in another show.

4. What other kinds of art do you enjoy?
I like prints of all sorts, especially stencils and wood and lino cuts. My current favorite artist is the Japanese artist Yoshitoshi, from the Edo period, for his wonderful characters, narrative, and design.

5. What advice do you have for an art teacher who works with young kids?
A fun project for very young kids might be this Four Image Narrative project:
Cutting stencils with a craft knife is out of the question for the very young artist, but they can cut with scissors, and so this might be a way to introduce them not only to stencils and also to making an edition of something, in this case, a printed book. This book has a decorated cover (using masking tape as a stencil) that can have a title printed in the border, and four stencils depicting the life cycle of a caterpillar: a caterpillar, a branch, a cocoon on the branch, and a butterfly. 
The four part story could also be a seed growing into a little flower, four stages of the moon, paw prints in the snow, a snow man being built (or melting, for that matter!). The kids can augment their design by drawing inside the stenciled shapes, or adding explanatory text. This little chapbook can be bound with a ribbon, and can be made in multiples. The students can number and sign the edition on the back or inside the cover.

This not-too-sticky painters tape can be used to tape off a brushy acrylic border for the cover of the chapbook.

Little fingers can easily cut out this caterpillar shape, hold it and brush off the edge of it to leave a white caterpillar shape than can be drawn into.
The chapbook can be bound with ribbon or string, and the stencil cover titled and decorated further.
The edition of the little book is indicated inside the front cover, signed and dated by the individual artist.

Kids can include words in their narrative as well, or make their picture book a wordless one.

The end! The back blank page can be used for adding additional caterpillar to butterfly facts, or to dedicate the book to a special someone (Mom, for instance).
Thanks so much, Margaret, for this lovely art project for children.  It was a pleasure to hear your answer and to learn about your new book!

Art is Basic

Summer of Color: Orange, Orange, Blue

I made this scrappy collage for the Summer of Color Week 6 Challenge.  The colors were one orange + one orange + one blue.  This is the first week of the challenge that I've had time to do.   I don't think I've ever used a color scheme like this in my artwork.   


Art is Basic

Stencil Craft Book Tour and Giveaway!

 Peot_authorphotoStencil Craft Cover

Today I am part of a book blog tour for Stencil Craft: Techniques for Fashion, Art and Home, written by Margaret Peot.  I am also excited to be a part of TWO GIVEAWAYS for this book.  I will be giving away one copy of the book to a reader of my blog.  Simply leave a comment on this post to enter.  Tell me how you use stencils in your art.  There is also a second giveaway to winner a fabulous prize package.  All of the blogs on this blog hop are participating, so there will be one grand winner from the rafflecopter giveaway.  The form is at the bottom of this blog post.

Stencil Craft is a lovely book with many tips and techniques for creating stencil prints on tote bags, clothing, stationery, pillows and more.  I love these cupcake designs!  This might be fun for students in a middle school class to try.

 There are several demonstrations about how to create stenciled artworks with layering.

These multi-layered, unique artworks are my favorite, called "amalgams" (I learned a new word!).  It was really interesting, because I had JUST written a blog post about using spray inks with leaves and then I opened this book and saw her demonstrating this technique.  I swear I didn't copy it! :) 

One thing I like about the book is that she shows you how to cut your own stencils to create one-of-a-kind artworks.  This skull design is perfect for tying in with Day of the Dead.

So, what do you think?  Do you like using stencils in your artworks?  Have you ever cut your own stencils?  To learn more about this book, visit these sites:

Amazon:  Stencil Craft: Techniques for Fashion, Art and Home
Goodreads: Stencil Craft
Author’s blog:  The Inkblot Book

GIVEAWAY Details:  There are two ways to enter.  First, I will be giving away ONE copy of the book on my blog.  Leave a comment telling us how you use stencils in art.  Secondly, 

This tour includes a Rafflecopter giveaway! 

The winner of the raffle will receive:

  • 17" x 15" canvas tote hand printed with a stencil interpretation Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring
  • 1 blank 12" x 12" canvas tote
  • 1 10" x 14" piece of stencil Mylar
  • 1 sponge
  • 2 stencil brushes
  • 1 craft knife set 
  • 2 Metallic Lumiere Acrylic Paints, Indigo and Metallic Copper


Here is the entry form for the giveaway.
 A Rafflecopter giveaway

For more chances to win a copy of the book, visit the other blogs on this tour!

Margaret Peot’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Monday, June 29th: A Life Sustained
Wednesday, July 1st: girlichef
Monday, July 6th: Cozy Little House
Tuesday, July 7th: Savvy Verse and Wit
Thursday, July 9th: Kari J. Wolfe
Monday, July 13th: Open Book Society
Monday, July 20th: Spiced Latte Reads
Tuesday, July 21st: No Monsters in My Bed
Wednesday, July 22nd: Up to Date Interiors
Friday, July 31st: Luxury Reading

Just a little more art journaling... what I've been doing lately

This summer has been quite busy.  I have tried to plan things pretty much every day this summer for us to do, because otherwise we end up sitting at home watching lots of tv.  We've gone to the children's museum, a few beaches, many splash parks and playgrounds, backyard parties and this weekend we actually went to a concert just for adults!  We heard the Dead Horses play (amazing group!) and the Last Revels.  Both are bluegrass-ish/folk with fiddles and banjos and great vocals.  Funny how I'm now listening to this kind of music... I used to be mostly listening to heavy metal and industrial. 

Daria and I have done some art projects together, scrapbooking, painting, making collages.. it is so fun to have someone who is always willing to make stuff with me!  I know it will only get more fun as she gets older. 

We took a few short trips.. we went to Sawyer, MI to my brother's cabin and to Chicago for the Lego Brickworld Convention.  Both of which I wrote about on my art teaching blog.  I tend to update that blog more often, because, let's face it.. my life revolves around teaching art and my kids... and I don't end up having as much time as I'd like to create my own art. 

My next blog post will be a book review and a super fun GIVEAWAY, so stay tuned!

Art is Basic

Painting Watercolor Backgrounds

These are watercolor backgrounds which will soon be the starting point for further watercolor doodling and collages

Art Supplies for Art Journaling with Children

My daughter has been scrapbooking and art journaling with me lately.  She is 5 years old and has been making art with me ever since she was about 2 years old.  Today I wanted to share with you some of the things she likes to use in her art journal and scrapbook.

A Peak Inside My Art Journal

Here are some of the pages I've been working on recently in my art journal.  While we were on vacation, my daughter and I did a bunch of collage making.  On the left side page below, you can see her drawing of a dog made it into my book.