Remember the field trips we took in elementary and middle school?
I think they are my most favorite memories of youth.
All week long, we'd look forward to a break from our routine and the chance to get away from the classroom for a while. I'm sure it led to my insatiable curiosity, love of learning and avid interests in science, art and nature.
These days, I still send myself out on "field trips" . . .
sometimes spending hours or days researching what I'd like to see and learn more about.
I plan where I'll have lunch or a coffee break and I always pack my camera and sketchbook.
I want you to be my "buddy" on some of these field trips,
so I've launched a new series I call
I'll take you along on some of my favorite outings - places like museums, art fairs, hikes or studios.
Who knows where we'll go.
I hope you'll enjoy the "eye candy"
If you're a bit like me, the images may lead you to spend time afterwards in
your sketchbook, art journal, diary or easel.
Sometimes, I'll show you what's come of the inspiration for me - on the field trip day itself or some time soon after. I'd love to see if it's sparked some creative action for you....so do please share links back to your work in the comments.
Last week's field trip took us to galaxies far far away.
This week we stay closer to home as we enjoy the artistry of our own planet Earth.
Once again, all of these photos are from my recent trip to Washington D.C.'s
(I could have spent days there - but there's 19 different museums in all!
My brain can only take so much.)
I have a special affinity for crystals, minerals, gemstones and fossils too.
I spent years studying Geology and Archaeology during college.
Now I have a hard time remembering any scientific name - so you'll find none of that here.
Instead, I find the organic lines and mind-blowing color now fill me with inspiration for my art making-
each a new palette, texture and shape to explore.
I mean really - just look at the combo of violet and green below - swoon!
How'd the Great Creator embed light within these stones?
Some crystals sparkle, shimmer and smolder - or they may actually burn - such as the sulphur below!
Others are stunning gems - it's jewelry for our planet.
Aren't these really just crystalized sunshine?
Roses and aquas and citrine and watery blues delight the eye.
Hey - are these magical petrified snow flakes?
Perhaps clues left by aliens?
Architecture in stone?
Like Superman's Crystal Cave.
Like Superman's Crystal Cave.
Natural sculptures of gold . . . and frozen "rays of iron".
I especially love these lumpy pods of sky blue combined with the moss-like growths of chartreuse.
Being truly inspired by the colors I'd seen, I decided to explore them in my gianormous art journal.
It was time to try the Dylusions's Spray Inks I'd recently acquired.
I spritzed puddles of ink on the pages, marveling at how they blended with one another.
Such bright and stunning colors - just like the crystals!
After it was dry and not knowing where to begin,
I simply started by turning the lime green shape at the bottom into a little pile of stone.
I was taking the crystal inspiration pretty literally!
But soon after that, other shapes began to reveal themselves to me . . .
a tree, a mountain, bodies of water, clouds, a sunset.
I will likely spend many more hours with this fantasy landscape -
I just adore finding the hidden shapes in random markings and splotches of color.
Some of the shapes make no sense - neither does the perspective.
I'm okay with that - the only purpose here was to
explore the colors that inspired me and enjoy myself!
This was truly a mixed-media project.
After using the Dylusions Spray Inks as a base,
the majority of it was "filled in" with Tombow markers and a water brush.
(I definitely took artistic license imagining the landscape.)
Small amounts of acrylic paints were "finger-tapped" in here and there.
A bit of water soluble oil pastels were added to the mix.
Because I love the smudgy yumminess, I used Stabilo Woody water soluble pencil for black drama.
Finally, I ended with a few dots of Sharpie Poster Paint Pens -
that seems to have become my signature as of late.
If you are interested in "excavating" images out of your own messy and random backgrounds,
take a look at the video'd art journaling workshop I taught last year.
I have a link to the now FREE workshop here.
There's also some other freebie tutorials on my "Freebie" page here.