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Sorry if my words are a little indistinct – I’m talking to you whilst eating (dreadfully rude, I know!) HUMBLE PIE.

(Thankfully, not Umble pie – because, you know, the origin of that? The umbles were the guts of the beast. I don’t care if that is venison, beef, whatever – it’s still OFFAL PIE. And I do not eat offal, it’s awful… (And to further parenthesize that statement, the joke probably only works with a certain sort of accent) (and can you tell I just re-watched The Pirates of Penzance on the weekend?!) (how many parentheses does that make?))

Not that long ago (see post HERE and here…, because I forgot I’d already done a rant about the same topic) I was VERY dismissive of scrap-booking and scrap-bookers. I believe the question “where’s the creativity?” may even have been asked, in ALL CAPS yet.

ANYWAY.

Humble, humble, apologetic pie. Because I have been doing some surfing online and maaaaaaaaan! What I saw! Yes, there are a lot of people out there doing ho – hum – follow -*to the millimetre* – what –  Simon – says (for “Simon” insert magazine/tutorial/teacher/whatever) – they’re not the ones I’m talking about. No, the really inspiring ones are people like Ali Edwards, Jen Fei-Fan Balzer, Dina Wakley

And the TOYS! I want a Cricut Expression (with the design software, please and thank you), oh, sooooo much. (And not just for its possible use in ummmmm… pirate stencilling, *wink*).

And spray inks! and oh, the pretty pretty papers… and grungey papers… and rub ons (not as dirty as they sound, you feeeeelthy minded person, you!).

And then there’s the digital side.. which has opened my access to whollllllllllllllle ‘nother world, even if I am still at the stage where I like to play with the images on the computer screen but then print and hand colour and cut and paste (nothing wrong with hybrid stuff –  – I mean, have you SEEN Marsha’s work? She makes beautiful wonderful art… and so does CD Muckosky – and so do many others, I’m sure).

And it’s not all expensive stuff – check out this tutorial (which I haven’t watched because our internet is throttled, arrrgh!)

Apart from the fact that ‘they’ tend to work on 12×12 pages, and generally use a few more photos than I do (although THAT will be changing, I’m taking LK’s Point and Shoot Journalling class in just over a week!) – where is the difference between what ‘they’ are doing and what I’m calling art journals?

Not a whole lot. I tend to use more handwritten text but even that’s not a distinguishing factor. So do ‘they’. So – (as I take another slice of humble pie) – I was WRONG.

WRONG WRONG WRONG.

Sorry.

SO what IS the difference, can anyone enlighten me? Between – hmmm, let’s call it ‘liberated scrap-booking’ (and hope no one else has already called something that!) and art journals – WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?

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I had just cut the word  “clone” out of an old (2003 – can I hoard or WHAT?!) magazine, and as a result of my (ahem!) Studio Practice, A Serendipitous Event Occurred. (Or in non art-wank terms – I work messy, and stuff falls on other stuff.) When it landed on the stamped image it just had to stay – I mean, a stamp is a CLONE, yes? Even when it’s a very cool stamp.

And then while I was thinking about stamps, I noticed that a damaged old stamp would fit really well on this page. (A stamp for a stamp, geddit? Oh, the subtlety!!)

Did I mention that I wandered into a local scrapbooking shop yesterday? Well, not quite wandered, since I had to stop the car and park, but it was a spontaneous decision. The first 10 minutes or so were overwhelming  – so many shiny pretty things! But then once I’d got over my initial shock, it made me very sad.

Because there was all this “pre-made” stuff.  This “copy this exactly and you’ll have ART” stuff.  Now, before any keen scrappers jump down my throat, I’m sure there are LOTS of people who buy “scrapbooking” marketed stuff and make original art with it.  I’ve bought scrapbooking papers to use too (mostly plain ones, I have to admit – the colour ranges are so HUGE!) BUT – that’s not what I’m talking ranting about here.

It’s like the quilters who want to make a quilt out of a magazine or pattern using EXACTLY THE SAME FABRICS in exactly the same positions as the picture.

I JUST DON’T GET IT! I mean, yes, I know all about lack of confidence in one’s own artistic judgement.  I know all about feeling like I shouldn’t be using The Good Stuff when it’s “just” something I’m making. I have art heroes, people I am HUGELY inspired by, whose style I might even try to imitate…

BUT…

why use someone else’s art?  I just don’t get that.

It may be weird but at least it’s mine….

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Why yes, I have been looking at a lot of Teesha Moore’s work, she is awesome! (of course, this is just my very basic version inspired by her style – she is really one of the Goddesses of Art Journals…)

I’m also playing around with just making stuff that makes me HAPPY.  Orange always makes me happy, it always has – I went through a phase in my early teen years where I wore the most amazing ORANGE tunic style shirt  ALL THE TIME, it had a cowl neckline, a twisted cotton rope sash, and was hip length.  I loved that top!

Yesterday I dragged out a box of other paper art/journal art stuff – found stamps (including a little date stamp  – yay!) and all sorts of painted paper that I’d forgotten I’d made. And paper napkins and sequin waste and stencils I’d cut and one very sad stamp pad – the surface just DELAMINATED when I tried to use it – another timely reminder to USE YOUR STUFF!!

lemon butter

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Yes, I know too much is BAD FOR YOU (heck, isn’t that what “too MUCH” means?!?!) but there is  NOTHING to compare to home made lemon butter on toast.  Mmmmmmmm.  I used Nigella’s Lemon Curd recipe from How to Eat.  (I don’t know why the names – butter or curd – are interchangeable, but apparently they are.)

This was a recipe that would be utterly UTTERLY perfect if I already had two of my dream things for the house: chooks (for the 4 whole eggs plus 4 yolks) and a lemon tree (for the 4 lemons).  Slowly, slowly, we’ll work towards getting things set up the way we would like.

I have very fond memories of my Mum making lemon butter – I think we must have had a lot of lemons available!   I also remember that Lemon Butter was a good thing to buy at church fetes and street stalls… possibly because it came from people who had chooks +lemon trees.

Oh, and after the first spoonful of the luscious home made version, the remainder of the FOUL store bought version (all citric acid and cornflour, possibly with artifical lemon essence… ewww!) was binned.  We kept the jar (of course!) to use for the next batch…

At least I’ll have an adequate vitamin C intake this week, eh?  The flu symptoms are FINALLY abating (fingers crossed!) – as in, I only wake up coughing a couple of times a night now, and the aches are approaching normal range (underlying fibromyalgia has NOT helped with recovery!).  I was somewhat heartened when watching the V8 supercars racing yesterday to hear a comment that one of the drivers – and bear in mind that these guys are endurance athletes, wrestling their cars around for hours at a time in temperatures often over 40 degrees – anyhow, one of these super-fit guys was still recovering from the flu that had laid him low at the last race meeting a month ago.  And I am NOT an athlete!  Another week off from the gym, though, then I get to start back gently gently…

Oh – and it amused me that the stove was so far out of scale with the lemon person.  Tee hee! I am being Very Good and actually USING my “good” art supplies – there are still a lot of colours in my tin of 30 Caran D’ache Neocolor II watercolour crayons that are untouched, but at least I have used SOME now!