Monday, January 21, 2008

Out of my comfort zone...


This weeks challenge on Inspire Me Thursday was to do something out of your comfort zone. A couple of months ago I bought one of those artist journal books because I saw some examples of them on a couple of blogs and thought it was really cool. They were being used to try out new ideas and that seemed like an excellent idea. I decided today was the day to break it out and try something new.
In the first picture I painted a page with acrylics by layering three colors and streaking it so it would look sort of like weathered wood. I wasn't exactly sure where I was going with it. I dug through various supplies and really wanted to do something with leaves. I finally settled with one of my leave stamps and used that. I also had some left over strips of metal from another project (still to be completed) that I had colored with alcohol inks. I find that I'm not happy with it but I kept telling myself that this is a book to explore with. I don't think that the leaves make enough impact.
The second piece started out because I had paint leftover and hated to waste it. I had seen some work done by Christine Adolph, including one of those sketch books, and decided to try my hand at something similar. Mine pales in comparison but at least I started. I'm not happy with this one either. I had such grand ideas in my head but haven't figured out how to get out onto paper.
I am so glad, though, that I have at least made a start. I want to continue to try some of the techniques I've seen that I really like and then finally develop my own style. This stepping out of my comfort zone is really hard. It's funny too because even with artists I am really inspired by I don't like everything they do. Maybe if I give myself more freedom I will like what I produce more. I will definitely keep exploring and working on it.
During this process of thinking about comfort zones I thought of a few people in my life that I am inspired and proud of the ways they have stepped out of their comfort zones. My sister, Sherri, has started going back to school after raising four kids. I so admire her get up and go do it attitude. A friend and scrapbooking buddy, Misti, has been joining groups of mothers she doesn't know for fellowship for herself and her son Jonathan. I really admire her for doing that and I understand completely how hard it is to socialize with new people. Eventually they become friends but you have to get over that hump. My sister-in-law, Wendy, has stepped out on a limb and went through a program to start her own Virtual Assistant business. I just think that is really cool.
Well, I probably could ramble on more but I just looked at the clock and it is so past my bedtime. 5 am is going to come way too soon so I am going to sign out now. Good night and sweet dreams.
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11 comments:

Misti said...

Laurel, thank you so much for that! It was definitely hard to step outside my comfort zone, but I'm so glad I did; I've made some great friends, and Jonathan is getting to play with other kids his age.

BTW - congrats on stepping outside your zone with your art! I think it's great, and I'm sure that as you continue to do so, you'll find more about what you like/don't like. That's how scrapbooking has worked for me.

Rebecca said...

Way to go. I am so, so proud of you!! Don't critique yourself so much, just let go and enjoy the process. That is when you will create your masterpieces!

And most of all...have a blast doing it!

titration said...

I like the one with the leaves the best. And I agree with rebecca- enjoy the process.

Anna Lloyd said...

Thanks for your post on my blog! I love the colours in these! Green and purple are my favourite colours. The leaves are lovely.

Deb G said...

I think these are wonderful!

Charlie said...

I love the color combos you used. I know it is really hard to step out of the comfort zone. I tend to do the same things over and over and feel really self conscience about letting others see my work. Everything you have made and posted is really beautiful. Way to step out of the comfort zone.

so NOT cool said...

How inspiring! I, too, have been wanting to start an art journal, but have procrastinated. So, you're definitely an inspiration. :)

tangled stitch said...

I love the three journals, they are a wow! and I absolutely love the examples of inspiring behavior. thanks for the inspiring post.

Alexzillasmama said...

Hey Laurel,
I just wanted to drop by to say hi. I might see you all if I get to go Saturday for the day, but mania is full(waitlist,even). I always enjoy seeing what you are up to in your scrap room!!!

Laura Scarlett said...

The technique you've used in the first one works really well for the weathered look you were going for. I like the final design with the simplicity of the leaves.

carla said...

Very nice! I really, really like the top page with the three leaves... they look like three trees in the distance, and the overall effect is very serene. The weathered background is gorgeous:> I like the "conversation" you had with yourself about using your sketchbook. We always want every product to be "perfect," but if we don't give ourselves permission to take a risk and play around, how will we ever grow? It looks like you enjoyed the process, and the products are lovely:>