21 Secrets is Just Around the Corner

Just a reminder that I’ll be one of the instructors in Spring 2015 version of 21 SECRETS. I’ll be joining other journal artists like Eric Scott & David Modler better know as The Journal Fodder Junkies, Carolyn Dube and Joyce van der Lely. 21 SECRETS is more than just an online workshop, it’s like having 21 talented, inspiring artist friends to art journal along with any day at any time! 21 SECRETS is made up of a diverse, talented community of artists that are most of all passionate about sharing what they love about art journaling with you!

The workshop consists of the 21 SECRETS eBook that contains 25+ hours of inspiring videos, full color photos, printouts, and detailed instructions. The videos showcase new techniques, unique methods, and bold approaches to art journaling. You can sign up now at the 21 SECRETS website.



Art Unraveled is Here!

Art Unraveled kicks off in Phoenix tonight with a meet the artist event. If you haven’t attended, Art Unraveled is a week long art event that features classes taught by internationally known artists. There are over 125 workshops that cover a broad range of media like painting, book making, jewelry making, metal work, journaling, fiber/fabric arts, sculpting and assemblage.

I’ll be teaching three classes at Art Unraveled this year, Dug from the Ruins, a journal created from polymer clay; Work by Time, a coptic bound art journal with wood covers and the Inlaid Wood journal wood covers with small circular inlay.

If you’re attending Art Unraveled this year, stop by and say hello.


Dug from the Ruins

Dug from the Ruins

Worn by Time

Worn by Time

The Inlaid Book

The Inlaid Book

Art Unraveled is Just Around The Corner

As a reminder, I’ll be teaching three workshops at Art Unraveled this year. This is the first time I’ve taught at this event so I’ve created a video introduction that talks a little bit about my work and the workshops I’ll be teaching.

I’ll be Teaching at Art and Soul 2015

I was unexpectedly contacted by the folks responsible for the Art and Soul Mixed Media Retreats about a month ago. I’m happy to announce that I’ve accepted their invitation and I’ll be teaching at the Portland event in 2015. I’ve designed three new classes for the event and I hope that they’ll appeal to a large cross section of people who are interested in creating their own personalized art journals. I’m going to be focusing on wood books during this retreat because I think the fit into the ethos of the Pacific Northwest.

I’m calling the first book the Wood Spellbook and it features the all seeing eye of art in the center of the front cover. It features a book block sewn to a leather spine and covers fabricated for red oak and aged with some painting techniques. This will be a little larger than I usually teach, 5 1/2″ x 8 1/2″but I think the size makes the design work and I’ll be teaching students how to paint the medallion the encircles the eye.

Book of Spells

The Book of Spells

Book two is a little smaller, 4″ x 6″ and I’m calling it the Shrine book. The students will be working with Walnut and carving out a recess that you can build a tiny shrine in. The recess will have room for small photos, milagros, charms or other objects that hold magic or memories for the students. I’m really not satisfied with the size f the shrine on the sample I created so look for an updated picture in the next week or two, I’ll probably enlarge the shrine. We’ll finish up by using some easy painting techniques to add a nice patina to the covers.

The Shrine Book

The Shrine Book


The third class I’ve named Mr. Chunky and I’ve included it because I’m constantly asked about teaching a Coptic stitch. The thing about the coptic stitch, at least in my view is that because it’s an exposed spine sewing it’s meant to be “featured” as an integral part of the book. To that end, I’ve made Mr. Chunky thick, twelve signatures worth. That translated to a book block about two inches thick and it allows the sewing to be a dominant part of the project. I’ll be teaching a locking coptic stitch which creates a nice visual element and adds some sturdiness as well.

Mr. Chunky

Mr. Chunky

If you’re interested in seeing more photographs of the projects, check them out on the Workshops page.

A Visual Journey

Last week a friend of my talked me into talking a class with her at Art Unraveled an annual art happening that thames place here in Phoenix each year. I agreed because the instructor was a friend whose work I admire and envy, Lisa Cheney. Lisa chronicles many things in her journals including her dreams and I could happily sit there and page through her dream journals for hours on end. The detail is amazing and the intricate detail creates a sense of intimacy that just pulls you in.

THis class wasn’t about her dream journals but about chronicling your travel experiences. She discussed her process for journaling while traveling but I found most of the value of the class in the different techniques she used to build layers of color in her images. As part of the class we went outside to draw some scenery. Lisa likes to break her spreads up into a major image and a couple of minor supporting images and that was part of what we were trying to do when we moved outside. I drew a couple of scenes, nothing special, what you would expect on the patio of an Embassy Suites.

I had actual met Lisa for the first time about two years ago and in January of 2012 we were talking about a dream she had and wanted to journal about. She asked me to photographer in a specific pose so that she could use the photo to draw from and I happily agreed. You can see that journal page on her blog, “A Visual Journey,” It’s the image with her hands on her face. I decided to incorporate that image into one of my journal pages and I decided to give her the Renaissance treatment, gold leaf halo and all, here’s a scan, enjoy.


The Last PLAY

I’ve been remiss in posting over the last few months. I’ve been working on another project which has been burning up a lot of time but now that I’ve wrapped that up, I think I can get back on track.

A couple of weeks ago, I attended the last PLAY Retreat. Teesha and Tracy Moore have decided to terminate their large art retreats for a variety of reasons and its been a tough haul knowing that I probably won’t make it back to Fort Worden anytime soon. This time, I took just about nothing with me except for a handful of fine-line pens and a book of Peerless Watercolors. The retreat had no specific focus this year like it has in the past, just forty artists working away.

One of the things we did do was some light painting that everyone seemed to enjoy. Tracy used his Lomos while I went digital. here are a couple of the nicer shots I got from the light painting sessions.

Here’s Teesha Moore with wings of light.


And here is Dawn DeVries Sokol, author of 1,000 Artist Journal Pages: Personal Pages and Inspirations and other books on art journaling.


While I brought very little in the way of art materials I did bring a couple of lights in addition to my camera, and offered to do portraits for anyone who wanted them. One of the people who took my up on the offer was Lisa Cheney-Jorgensen. While most people we’re interested in something a little more traditional, Lisa had a special request — she wanted a pose she had seen in a dream so she could make it part of here dream journal. Here’s the shot.


A couple of hours after I gave a print of this image to Lisa, it was already in her journal. I’ll miss PLAY.