IFJM and a Little Blog Housekeeping

I started blogging here near the end of 2013 and haven’t changed a thing on this site since then.

Well it’s about time!

If you’re a newish reader then you might not know I actually have a second blog where I keep all the “fake” journals I’ve created the last few years… well, they’re real journals, but each one has been kept by a persona I take on for the month of April.

April is International Fake Journal Month… IFJM for short. Roz Stendahl is the brains behind this activity and I wholeheartedly join in by adopting a character and journaling as this person, all the while posting images of this work daily, or nearly so.

I make references to this blog… Skylark Karma… when I lead up to April but ’till now I’ve never had a sidebar widget of my own.  When you’re on the home page you can see the image of a crow on the right; it’s done in gouache and marked up with my blog address. Just a simple click of the image and you’ll be whisked off to browse my current and former fake journals.

I had a great time creating this image.  First, I drew a rough outline on a prepainted acrylic background in my Pentalic Aqua Journal before going in with gouache.  There are passages where the line drawing shows through and others where the gouache is applied thick enough to hide and correct the misdrawn lines.

I love this full spread but a closeup of one of those faces would make a great image link. But which one? If I used the one on the left, he would be looking away from the body of this text.

… and it’s blurry, especially behind the eye.

But the crow on the right… that’s the one!

I love how the blues, greens and purples all combine to say – black.

I ran it through my photo processing software to add the lettering and… Voilà! … I have a permanent link to my Fake Journal blog.

Please visit and see who “I am” and what “I’ll be creating”.  The magic starts this Saturday, April 1st.  Join the fun!

OMG!

G!  … as in Gouache!

I’m taking another Mary Ann Moss class… OMG!… this time it’s all about gouache, an opaque water media very similar to opaque watercolor only more so.

This first thing I learned was that it’s pronounced g’wash… rhyming with squash.

Fair warning… lots of photos ahead!

I bought a lovely selection of Schmincke gouache selected by artist, Roz Stendahl and to that I added a few tubes of M. Graham gouache. I squirted it into pans and arranged my palette.

When closed the palette latch is a little loose so I made a band out of 1.5 inch elastic. I love the turquoise!

I started playing first by adding white to get tints and then seeing if my pens would write over the matte surface.

Hmmm… I wonder what secondary mixes I can get with my selected primaries?



Ah… nice!  But what do I mix to get the brightest hues?




I’m still finding it hard to judge how much water… or rather, how little water to use. My gouache blocks on this spread have lots of streaks. I wonder once I conquer the water issue if I’ll also get rid of the streaks, but for now I rather like the wabi-sabi look.


Great practice but now what? Well. I decided to draw my Friday. My black Uni-ball Vision wrote like a dream but my white Signo?  Not so much. After a few issues with hard starts and skipping I learned to use a light hand. It’s a nice arrow to have in my art quiver.


I better get working on the next lesson or I’ll be behind my amazing classmates.

Thanks MAM… It’s my summer of gouache!

If you want to see more of Mary Ann Moss please check out her blog: Dispatch From LA.

My April IFJM Is Complete!

You’ve heard me talk about International Fake Journal Month before so I won’t bore you again with the details but April’s gone and my project is complete!

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If you start here you can forward through the entire month and follow along.

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or… you can jump directly to my wrap up.

It’s been a great April…   May?  Bring it on!

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L is for Lettering (Blogging A to Z)

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This quote has resonated with me ever since I first saw it on Roz Stendahl’s blog.  Please see her take on her mentor’s quote and be sure to read the last paragraph…  you won’t regret it!

Lettering quotes in my journal is meditative.  It takes time, time to reflect on how the words are a part of me.  Time to reflect on the soul of art.

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Crazy, Crazy April

As I have the last 3 years, I will be participating again in IFJM – International Fake Journal MonthRoz Stendhal‘s creation.  If you’re new here and haven’t heard about this wonderful April project please follow the links above.  Just be prepared to lose yourself in the interwebs as you learn.

Roz has chosen “[considered] TRUTHS” as this year’s… slogan? motto?

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How will I handle this?  To find out please consider visiting my dedicated IFJM blog:  SkylarkKarma.wordpress.com. I hope to post my character’s journal pages daily… come, follow my progress!

And, as if I didn’t have enough to do, I’ve also decided to participate in Blogging A to Z.  Oh no… it runs in April too!  Basically, on April 1st we’re to blog about something beginning with the letter A, the 2nd is the letter B, etc.  Sundays are our day of rest… no posting.  That way, on April 30th, we’ll all be posting about zebras… or zithers, or zzzzzs!  There’s a big sign-up process but I’m not sure I’ll jump through that hoop but I may reconsider

Now don’t be expecting too much.  I figure a photo and a bit of text will be as much as I can manage. This is an opportunity to look back, share a few pages from the archives along with some recent work.  I’ll be doing that here on danaburrellart.com so stay tuned.

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Lots going on… I hope I didn’t bite off too much.  Wish me luck!

Five Day Art Challenge – Day Five

Day 5… and final day… of my Five Day Art Challenge.

Today, as an homage to Roz Stendahl, and her creation, IFJM – International Fake Journal Month I’m sharing an image from each of my previous fake journals.

What is a fake journal? Well, it’s a chance for you to be someone else and keep a journal as that person. It doesn’t have to be a visual journal although that’s what I did for the last three years. Each year I’ve chosen an art goal and made a commitment to have an entry for each day in the month of April to coincide with other fake journalers.

In 2012 I had 2 goals – to sketch a person each day in ink and watercolor and create a narrative for my journal keeper. If you’d like to see my entire 2012 IFJM journal from the beginning start with my April 1st post and forward through the “next” posts.

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2013’s goal was to work in gouache over pre-painted acrylic backgrounds and of course, have that all-important, at least to me, back story of the artist. Here’s the link to see how I selected my physical journal as well as the link for the first post of my 2013 Fake Journal.

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In 2014 I used a small set of watercolor pencils in my journal and again my character had her own life lurking behind those pages. See my journal selection and the April 1st journal entry if you’d like to see it all from the beginning.

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If you’d like to know more about International Fake Journal Month please visit officialinternationalfakejournalblog.blogspot.com to see Roz’s journals and get a feel for the whole experience.

And yes, I’ll be participating again this year… don’t have a goal or a character yet but it’s early… I have nearly two months to figure it out. Be sure to visit “me” or whomever I “am” at skylarkkarma.wordpress.com.

I hope to see you in April!

Recess at Sketchbook Skool

I had great plans for the winter holiday hiatus from Sketchbook Skool. I thought I’d take the opportunity to sketch a portrait of every teacher. There were only 14 instructors… 3 terms, 6 teachers each… and each term 2 of them were returning teachers, the founders, Danny Gregory and Koosje Koene.  No sweat… plenty of time.

HA! …. it’s amazing how time just evaporates.

I did manage to sketch all 6 instructors in the SBS – Beginnings class: Danny Gregory, Koosje Koene, Prashant Miranda, Jane LaFazio, Roz Stendahl and Tommy Kane.

Have you been wondering what Sketchbook Skool is like?  You can find out by taking a free klass. Get a taste of creativity, it may be just what you need to get you through the winter.  Beginnings starts again January 2, Seeing starts January 23 and Storytelling starts on February 13.

Don’t be too kool for skool!

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Halfway Point for International Fake Journal Month

There’s a lot to celebrate today. The snow is totally gone from my garden, I’ve paid my taxes and I’m halfway into my April project, Roz Stendahl’s creation, International Fake Journal Month.

This year’s motto, No Explanations, means there’ll be no details ’till May but I do have 15 images for you to checkout on my dedicated IFJM blog: skylark karma.wordpress.com. If you’re a stickler for reading consecutive posts feel free to start with the April 1st post and go from there!

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Posting daily seems to keep me on my toes so be sure to return as the month progresses and remember…

No Explanations!

IFJM…skylarkkarma.wordpress.com

The last few years I’ve participated in Roz Stendahl’s IFJM… International Fake Journal Month for the uninitiated.  It’s a chance for journal keepers to put on a different persona and journal as if you really were this individual.  Not forever, just a month… the month of April.  Just long enough to get a feel for the difference between this character and yourself. It’s a chance to be the person you always wanted to be or a chance to try out that career path you were fascinated with but never took for one reason or another.

As Roz says… “Life’s so short, why live only one?”

It’s possible for a Fake journal to be totally written but I’ve chosen to create visual journals. In the past I’ve uploaded my pages to a Flickr account but have found that problematic so I’ve created a new blog to hold both my previous years efforts and my fake journals going forward.  I’ve already started uploading my 2012 journal and will follow with 2013 before I start in on the planning for this year’s journal.  For those of you who have seen this before please bear with me as I go though my retrospective.  My intention is to be current by March when I’ll start planning the 2014 experience.

If you’re interested in IFJM as a concept please visit Roz Stendahl’s Official International Fake Journal Blog.  If you’re interested in learning more about Roz and her art please check out Roz Wound Up.

If you’re interested in my IFJM blog please go to skylarkkarma.wordpress.com

As if one blog wasn’t enough!