Monday, September 30, 2013

My Waste Paint Art Journal

Layers, lovely layers of colour and pattern, I love them.

While I am playing with my gelli plate I keep a student .visual diary beside my plate, I am using a canson A4.  I have it opened up and use it to clean my tools as I use them on the gelli plate. I also clean my stencils and stamps in this journal and I end up with some really gorgeous prints and so inspiring, I just want to play in this journal all the time now..

All that excess green I rolled of the brayer formed a lovely background for cleaning off the dwarf nandina leaves the day we did botanical printing.

Here I was cleaning off some tools 
I used to stamp into my plate,
they make great starting points for journal pages.

This page has been used for cleaning off the brayer and various stamping tools and then I have cleaned some of my home made stamps off on top of these pages, the white is gesso I was stamping onto a different piece of work.

And this page you might recognise if you are a regular river girl art reader.
It looked like this when I took it out in my car the other day 
and it turned into this.

I am loving this journal so full of inspiration, colour and texture and just ready for me to start playing in it at any time. I still have a few pages blank in the back and some have notes scrawled onto them that may become another layer in a journal page when I get to them or may just stay like that to remind of the day they were written.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Art Journalling on the Road

I am a busy person, 
these days I don't know many people who aren't busy.
  I always have so many things I need to do, and often the things I want to do for me come after the things I need to do as a mother or a house renovator or a working artist and I hate just sitting around waiting so I have been art journalling in my car on the road for years. 

I have a lovely van with a comfy bed in the back because the boys and I love to travel in it but I am equally fond of spreading out my supplies on the passenger seat and using the steering wheel as my "table" to lean my journal on.

All that time I spend hanging out at skate parks or BMX waiting for my boys usually gets put to good use.
I keep a basic kit packed and ready to go at anytime, it is how I store my most used tools anyway and I love the fact it also makes them easy to grab at a moments notice, I also love the way the boys make sure they are in the car when they are loading it up with bikes and skateboards and helmets and drink bottles.

I take a shopping bag with a couple of journals, a magazine to read a water bottle and my pencil case. In my pencil case I keep an assortment of gel pens, markers and paint pens, my favorite black pen for journalling is a uni ball eye micro, and I favor the broad white signo from uni ball as well. For bolder writing I love the posca paint pens or the Faber Castell pitt pens. I also have some 2B pencils for sketching, some paint brushes, some derwent inktense pencils, a water brush, a sharpener and a an eraser. I also take a sturdy plastic box with an assortment of stamps - mostly my own handmade ones, stamp pads, spray inks, water spray, impasto gel, white acrylic paint plus 2 or 3 other colours, glue stick, double sided sticky tape, scissors, a few stencils and any odds and ends I have swept into the box last time I had it out working with it.

I worked on this page at a recent weekend spent at the BMX track while my boys were following their passions, I was recuperating from the flu and following my own.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Botanic Prints with the Gelli Plate

We have had a mild winter and I was noticing lots of luscious weeds growing with lovely veining so I did as any paint splattered girl would do, I picked some and took them inside to play with. The sample above is a ruby dock weed and I just adore how it came out. 

Next I decided we would play with botanic printing in my class at the Grafton Art Club 

and we produced some really beautiful delicate prints using the leaves as stamps

I also ended up with some stunning embellishments like this one.

As I was selecting a colour to paint my house at the same time I ended up with a heap of little paint sample cards, just perfect for printing onto.

We experimented with leaves and these are poinciana seed pods, I have plans for some sturdy flowers and grass seed heads though as they come into season.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Out of the Box Eyes Wide Clarence Valley

 There is a fantastic project running in the Clarence Valley for the local young people it is called Eyes Wide Clarence Valley and is run through the local council with federal funding.

For a full program and information about all the great things happening with Eyes Wide visit their page on the CVC website   where you will see the huge array of workshops and events on offer, all free to the community.

The workshop spaces are in 3 converted shipping containers, the CAFE box- offers a great value menu , the Tech box- offering computer based workshops including digital photography, film making, sound and audio, photoshop and minecraft and the Art box- the one I share my skills and enthusiasm in along with many other local professional artists. 
Most workshops run for 2 hours and are for youth aged 12 to 18 although other age groups are also looked after in the school holidays and all of these workshops are offered free.

I am offering workshops in ATC's- Artist Trading Cards, hand made stamps , printmaking and  art doll making in the  Funky Felt Mini Me workshop.

The Box's are mobile and move around the Clarence Valley so you will find them in different places at different times, in Grafton, Yamba, Coutts Crossing, Copmanhurst and Wooli, keep en eye on your local shop for posters or sign up at the Eyes Wide facebook page to know what is happening and where, but there are also lots of great competitions, movie screenings, special events and fun.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Gelli Plate

Like everyone in the mixed media world I too have succumbed to the gelli plate madness, oh how did we live without them? 

I have done so many delicious prints I will just share a few.

Gelli printing is so fun and I love the pages I am creating. 

I will be sharing some of the things I do with my gelli prints as well.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Youth Art Classes with Louise Kirby ~ River Girl Art

I am a local artist offering my unique and fun art classes to Clarence Valley youth starting term 4 this year.

Making art is fun and relaxing and in a life where we can so often get it wrong, there are no wrongs in my art classes, just wonderful experiments we can learn from. 

I am offering a colourful,
 creative and nurturing space for kids from 7 up. 

 Classes will be limited to only 10 students so everyone will get lots of personal attention.

The materials we use we will play with, but they will learn as much from the art materials themselves as they will from me. 
I am aiming for your children to find success and pleasure in our art time and at the end of our 8 week terms they will have gained  new skills and ideas and come home with something uniquely their own.

Next term we will be focusing on printmaking, stamp making and book making and you can have a peek at me working with another young artist on my facebook page River Girl Art in the Art with Kids folder, these are the classes we will be doing this term. Please like my page to keep in touch with what I am doing and where I am.  I offer many different classes in different places locally and afar.

Classes will be held at the Grafton Art Club between 3:30 pm and 4:45 pm on Wednesday afternoons.
Dates for the next term are October 9th and 6th, November 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th and December 4th and 11th as I have prior teaching commitments in the Blue Mountains for the last couple of weeks in October.  
Cost for the full term is $150 per student this will cover all of your materials and hall fees, there is an additional cost for annual art club membership of $10.

I am also offering an earlier class for homeschooled children between 1 and 2:30 at the Grafton Art Club.

 If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me
or message me on my River Girl Art facebook page.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Blue Mountains

Beautiful  Books  Workshop
Learn how to create your own books like these

Coming to the Blue Mountains on Wednesday 23rd October
One day workshop making a beautiful coptic bound book.
All materials are supplied please contact the lovely Julie on

I look forward to creating something beautiful and sharing creativity with you.

I am also offering some kids workshops while I am there with the fabulous Living Learning  home school group, contact Julie if you are interested in these as well.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Update for River Girl

Hello this is your preoccupied artist popping in for an update.

Its coming up to 12 months that I have been back in the Clarence Valley and being wiped out with the flu for the past week has given me an enforced rest and time to reflect on that year and all that has been happening.

I suppose the biggest thing I have been working on, besides being a home school mother of 2 wonderful boys is the house. I have been working pretty solidly for the last year on renovating our family home. I have had lots of help from various tradesman working with me but I have done so much of this on my own and the boys have both contributed greatly as well. 

We are turning an old ( not ancient or antique ) fibro house that had lots of pretty major problems into a lovely modern weatherboard home using mostly recycled materials from a house we puled down and moved here years and years ago. We have overcome so many issues and it is a constant challenge but it is also so very wonderful to be a part of making it happen, and the boys are thrilled to be out of the tent that was home for months and to have lovely big bedrooms of their own.

 I have also been doing a lot of teaching and sharing my great passion- art.

I started an adults art journalling class at the Grafton Art club and have been having so much fun with some wonderful women, I have introduced them to art journals, mixed media, book making, stamp making, print making and lots of other things over the year, sadly though this class is dwindling so I am going to change direction in October.

We have been exploring monoprinting lately using the super versatile gelli plate, and everyone is producing some gorgeous prints.

 We have enjoyed regular weekly classes and week end workshops and I would love to keep this class running but peoples lives change and there is travelling to be done and work that needs doing. I am really open to offering these fun and freeing classes to adults though so if you are interested please contact me and keep an eye on my River Girl Art facebook page  where I post regularly about what I am up to both locally and further afield.

I have also been offering workshops through the incredible Out of the Box program to local youth and have had a great time working with our talented young people in the community. I offer workshops in art doll making, Artist Trading Cards, hand made stamps and will be offering print making workshops when the box gets moved to Market Square very soon.

I do have some very exciting things coming up but they will have to wait as this flu ridden river girl needs to go back to bed.