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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Day Two - The Adventure Begins

Everyday was jam-packed with a flurry of activities - tours, workshop, sight-seeing, workshop, shopping, workshop -- you get the idea ???  Two days of traveling - eight days of seeing the sights of Portugal, enjoying the new friends, learning creative processes from Micheal, watching how other artists approached their creations, and best of all -- getting to spend time with my daughter !!   I was slow to keep up with it all, but, everyone was most considerate in watching over me !!  To pick just ONE memorable thing of each day would be impossible.  Taxis picked us up at the hotel for the first tour of the first day -- the Ceramica De Bicesse tile factory -- awesome, with each tile being individually handled several times by different workers before it would be complete and ready for sale.  The artistry involved in the restoration of 18th century tiles -- another sight to behold.  Then, off to Margarida's art studio to claim our spots and get started on our projects with Micheal.  A short way down the street was Cuca's home, garden and ceramic studio.  This quiet, gentle lady had set up tables in that beautiful garden for our lunch and then gave us a little demonstration in her studio.  Evening meals always seemed to be a celebration of a delightful day - always late in the evening - always somewhere special !!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Portugal Journal - Day One

For Tamera :  I added bits of my boarding pass, the tag that came in Margarida's early packet, mini photos of you and I having a bit of lunch after registering at the Amazonia Hotel and before our nap and shower, plus a small photo of Micheal and Andrea at the evening welcome get-to-gether at Margarida's art studio.  Travel ephemera from my stash of stickers and a bit of Portuguese lace are on the inside cover.  Everything looked too bright to suit me, so out came the paint, brushes and a glass of water to add Usghhh to the elements.  There was way more to journal about than there was room for, of course, but having that bit of lunch with you and meeting Micheal and the other artists attending the workshop were the best part of the day for me !! I came to question Margarida's "five-minute walks" from that very first evening !!   It was a long day with the hours of traveling, the mix-up with my flight, going through passports, finding my luggage and finally meeting up with you in Lisbon.  What a kind and patient taxi driver we had in Luis !!  The "adventure" had begun !! Be sure to click on the photos for a larger view of the pages.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Painting and Ironing

 Scans of the Portugal journal show truer colors than camera photos, it seems.  Ironing the pages after the paint dried helped smooth out the curly card stock pages that I had done, so yesterday, I proceeded to paint all of the pages. Today, the iron was plugged in and all pages ironed out. I had fun experimenting with some of the colors on our supply list for the Navigator workshop. I definintely prefer the Usghh combination I used on the inside covers and a few pages, but, went with some different colors throughout the book.  All are just random brush strokes, nothing definite in mind on most of the pages.  Now, what will I put on these pages ?? Time will tell !

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Portugal Journal Cover

Today, I added the typewriter key stickers to the front of my Portugal journal and "usghhhed" the inside cover, first page and first spread.  I'm not happy with the results of the watercolors on the card stock or on the inside cover...  I never thought about using watercolor paper for my pages, so will be experimenting on scrap card stock before I do anymore pages.  The card stock curls with the adding water to the paint to get the effect.  Maybe I will try ironing them to smooth them out after they are dry.  I certainly don't want "curly" pages.  If that is effective, then I will be painting all of the pages before I add elements and journaling.  I am hopeful it will all come together and my issues will be resolved !!  The map I used for the inside cover is glossy, so I should have sanded it a bit before painting it.  I will be doing something more to it before I am happy with it.  Live and learn !!!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Preview of Portugal Journal

 Have been thinking ever since returning from Portugal what I would do to preserve some of the memories.  After much "how do I want to do this ?, what kind of medium suits me best ?, etc., etc., this is what I came up with.  I found amongst my books for altering, a 6" x 8" thin one that the cover seemed to be "just the right size" !  I removed the pages and found this "old world" looking paper within my stash.  It wasn't quite large enough to cover the front and back of the book, so improvised.  Of course, that called for getting out the box of trims and it all came together. I still like "pretty" !!  On the inside, I used one of the maps that was in the packet Margarida sent a couple of months before the workshop.  I will be "Deminging"  that, for sure, as it is much to bright !!  There are two signatures of card stock making eleven spreads, plus first and last pages to fill.  I'm sure that won't be a problem as some of those eight days had a LOT going on !!  I used ticker tape to tie them in, then sort of braided two of the pieces down to the bottom.   I'm sure I will be adding some trinkets of some sort to those loose ends.  It's a start -- will see where it goes from here !!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Portuguese Cigar Box Transformed

This is a small 4" x 6" cigar box, purchased from Margarida at her art studio in Portugal.  The box was painted with black acrylic, dried, then a wash of watered down crimson added over the top of the black paint.  The transparency was heated with a cigarette lighter around the edges to make it "bubble up".   Metal embellishments include an old chain necklace, watch parts and bird from Tim Holtz and bits of lace in the corners.  Paper used is from an old Portuguese book "washed" with watered crimson and carbon black mixed.

Made in Portugal

My daughter and I spent 8 days in Portugal for Micheal DeMeng's "Henry the Navigator" workshop with Margarida Alberty hosting at her art studio in Estoril.  The workshop was fabulous with 10 women from around the world attending.  Margarida led us on tours and shopping throughout Estoril and Lisbon. The cuisine at all the various cafes and restaurants was to die for.  The two days of travel to and from were worth every minute of it.  Micheal and Margarida were nothing short of spectacular !!

These photos of my finished "Henry the Navigator" book, do not begin to do justice to the techniques Micheal taught us in the workshop.  Mixing watercolors to make the art piece appear aged and very old was a totally new process for me.

We went to a flea market in Lisbon and picked up unique pieces to use in our creations.

Every time I look at my finished work of art, it will bring most wonderful memories of a trip shared with my daughter, plus, those memories of a great workshop with Micheal.