More ‘Work With What You Have’


A few days ago I showed you an art journal page I built using something I already had on hand. I did not create the page from scratch, but used an existing image and built on it. Today we will see a second page I made using the same techniques.

This is a collage page from Jane Davenport, part of a paper pack she carries in her store.

The existing piece was too large for what I wanted to do. The art journal page swap called for 5″ x 7″ pages. So I cut this image down to those increments.

There was a whole lot of yellow leftover space and that is what I cut off. The long piece from the side of the image and the smaller piece across the bottom. I chopped off the bottom of her legs. And apparently two fingertips. Oops! Not very bright, not very cheerful. Did I throw these two pieces away? Nope. I did not. I didn’t know at the time what I would use them for, so I put them in my Zen-untangled! basket.

Yesterday when I did some Zen-untangled! work, I found a use for those chopped off legs. Hahahaha! I wanted to use my little Shamrock on top of a brightly patterned paper and knew she would get lost in all that color. But this yellow piece was the perfect thing to set her apart. With smart placement I covered up that knee cap, now no one would ever know those are legs behind my focal piece.

But back to today’s post, this piece needed some oomph! It was a little too bland for me. Here you can see the Dyestress Ink Pad – you know I love these! – and fruit punch was the right color for sure!

Don’t you love what inking the edges and scrubbing some color on the piece does for the overall image? It really brings out the pink in her cheeks, her overall skin tone, and the colors in her sweater.

My Schmincke watercolors and a water brush did the rest. Hair, eyelids, neck ruffle, top of the sweater, pants line, cuffs, They all benefitted from some extra color.

But I still had all that yellow on the side that needed to be dealt with. This is a second stencil I purchased recently from Koala T Crafts. You know . . . because I didn’t already have enough stencils. Hahahaha! I liked the texture and the weave reminded me of the clothing she wore.

I just held my stencil down with one hand and used a finger dabber in the other to dab and stab color through the stencil onto the yellow area. It really is that simple. And the cool thing about this particular ink is when I hold this stencil under running water – all that color just rinses right off.

Looks pretty cool! But not finished yet.

Some Tim Holtz’ words and an outline sticker helped, but still not ‘complete’ looking.

With just a couple items I was able to bring this recycled image to a new completion and readiness for the swap. I used a plain black fine tip pen to trace around some of the green blocks in the background. And Jane’s Paint Over Pens came back out to fill in the hearts on the sweater and to add some dots along the edge. And this art journal page was complete and ready to send on to its new owner once we start mailing again. We have that hold for right now. I love how she turned out! Made easy and doable by starting with something I already had on hand. And about 15 minutes. This is totally something you can do, too! Fashion magazines are a great starting point. Scrapbook papers, clothing magazines, catalogs, sale fliers from the mail, they all have images you could do this with. Have fun!

8 thoughts on “More ‘Work With What You Have’

  1. Amazing … what you do is JUST AMAZING, Alice!! There seems to be no limit to your creativity! This is a stunning journal page and, personally, I would be hard-pressed to part with it! But of course, if we keep everything we create … well … there’s no room for anything new! So I applaud you for sending along some of your most lovely creations, and opening your arms to receive from other creatives. 🙂

    • I’ve sent out some pieces I wish I still had. But you are right. We can’t keep it all

  2. I had to laugh when you turned the chopped off legs into background material! No piece of paper is safe from you – in the nicest possible way of course. The blue dots & the black outlining of the green blocks really finish this piece off – it’s your finishing touches that are ‘icing’ on the cake. Those blue dots really bring out the blues in the rest of the piece & that outline sticker is perfectly whimsical.

    • hahaha! no one would know those were legs without being told. fun page! those paint over pens are really nice – I just wish they came in more colors

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