Mixed Media, Coloring, JB5's, Patreon

I have so many irons in the fire it is hard to figure out which one to pull out first! I've got over 700 subscribers on YouTube LINK HERE, and have found that it is easier to have conversations there than comments from blog posts. Besides, the comment button here is confusing...some people reply to the automated email they get and it doesn't appear with the original posts.

I started blogging back in 2009 when I was in the throes of learning as much about painting as I could...entering competitions, getting juried into some big shows, working toward signature status. One day I woke up and realized that I was painting for that purpose, and not exploring as much. Not only is that practice expensive with framing, entry fees, shipping, etc., it was limiting me. The minute I decided to take another path, I started having more fun with my art.

My studio still has my oil taboret setup, and my pastel section. I just added a flat workstation for mixed media. Then started collecting all the way cool supplies available for the more crafty side of art. Papers, paints, ephemera, sprays, stencils, stamps, die cutting and embossing machines…and then figuring out how to organize them so you can get right to them for using (and learning to use them). 

It was a gradual shift…I started and fell in love with encaustic. I could use pastels, oil sticks, oil paint to mix my own colors like I do with oil. Collage is encouraged, mark making with any kind of tool…it was a great segue into mixed media!

Most of my art up to this point was realism…I didn't have an abstract bone in my body! Everything was as controlled as I could get it: compositions planned on the computer, colors mapped out, drawing perfected. Very rigid. I became curious about art journaling. Glueing junk mail onto a page in a book that you might make out of a plain old composition book, or junk catalog is non-threatening and requires NO planning. In fact, Shannon Green YouTube LINK HERE came up with a process she calls "Journaling by 5's" LINK HERE. Twenty pages, 15 minutes to apply paint, 15 minutes for a stencil, etc. When you finish all five stages you have a journal-ish book you can keep working in, or put away. 

It worked! I was slapping paint, glue, colors, trash from my desk onto my pages, whatever was within arm's reach that could keep me under the :15 limit. Since then, I've done canvases using a glue gun for texture, modeling paste for stencils, sanding to show underlying layers and, in general, having a ball. Everything is possible. Anything goes.

Coloring for adults entered the scene, but I didn't want to manage a bunch of colored pencils in my TV chair at night after spending several hours in the studio. That was too much like work. Shannon came to the rescue again with her doodling pages. Simple, easy-peasy, only one color to mess with...black. I fell in love and was all of a sudden doodling several hours at night.

The piece at the top is a prime example of one of my free-form doodles. Then I printed it in 50% black and in 25% black and colored OVER the black areas. I could go back and keep going in the white areas if I want, or quit anytime I want.

Anyhow, after some encouragement from some of my admirers, I am offering these for sale CLICK HERE. All three versions are available as a package. You can print them for your own use, not for sale or claiming as your own of course. If you do, the Muse will turn her back on you forever! They are cursed :) Print with a laser printer or inkjet printer. Laser is permanent and inkjet will bleed, so test first if you want to use watermedia. 

I was also encouraged to set up a Patreon Account LINK HERE. Consider it a tip jar for artists who provide free content via YouTube. Monthly subscriptions as low as $1 a month get you access to special content, and rewards. These coloring page sets are available free at the $5.00 a month level.

Join me on YouTube, Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, and where else I can't remember offhand. Go to VickiRossArt.com for all my social media links.