Blog: Stroll Through The Hood

Which Direction?

I was thinking about how so many times in our lives we have to rethink the direction we want to head – always so tough , so many questions, so many uncertainties.

For this art journal spread I sketched the lady on the left with acrylic ink and a bamboo sketching pen, and colored her in with watercolor. The right lady is on a piece of painted deli paper which lets the background show through.

I added some stamping with my Stroll Through the Hood RubberMooon Stamps and stamped with acrylic paint and the MidTown ArtFoamies Stamp Set as well as the Mini Manhattan Positive and Negative Stamp set.

I sprinkled some golden ink over the spread and added the journaling. I do love how this turned out.

Different from my usually super filled pages- but still funky :)

Here are some of the supplies I used for this spread


Comments (2)

  • Joi@RR

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    Love this one Nat. Your gals are so abstractly done – in a great way and then the buildings are more “solid” – stabilizing. Love that some are black/white too. And the Mini Manhattan stamp is perfect symbolism for the “which way” – and perfect in the varying colors to show different choices. This is one that would be great on a huge canvas – so symbolic and the type of art that speaks! You always inspire me. Have a blessed holiday season. Xj.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Thank you so much Joi! Wishing you a wonderful holiday season as well!!!<3

      Reply

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Stroll Through the Hood – October 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

Love the fall – we did a lot of bicycle rides the last couple weeks – the views from Liberty State Park never cease to amaze me.

Secret Beach is open again – it is closed as a bird sanctuary during the summer months.

When you drive through this you really forget you are in a city :)

Little carving on the way that made me smile.

A lot of horseshoe crabs again-this one is so light – I wonder if the dark color comes when they are out of the water longer?

From the pier in front of Liberty Train Station – the pier is still damaged from Hurricane Sandy.

And after a day in the studio another beautiful view in this glowing light.

There are also a ton of Monarchs flying around in the park right now – it is amazing. They are so beautiful.

Lucky us: my friends and I got a seat in the busy path on the way home – never a dull moment in the path ;)

And the last night warm enough to have a spontaneous stoop hangout with our friends -It is a typical thing to do in the neighborhood – I love this so much. I know many people think that cities are super anonymous but we are living in a really fun area and we are super lucky that a lot of our friends live in walking distance.

An art installation in front of City Hall for the Jersey City Art and Studio tour, which sadly I had to miss this year because I went to the U.K to teach.

And watching beautiful sunsets with unreal clouds on our decks. What a great inspiring month it was – I hope yours was amazing as well!

Comments (2)

  • JoAnn

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    What a wonderful Stroll Through the Hood – loved it all.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      thanks for joining JoAnn- have a wonderful weekend!

      Reply

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Stroll Through The Hood – September 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

You never know where you spot Dylan Egons black and white paste ups …

my godson sketching our deck on our deck  and writing in his travel journal – mmmmyyyy boyyyy LOL

Love this in Jersey City’s Little India

We took a trip to  the Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park. I have been here probably 10 years or longer ago when it wasn’t a NHP yet and boy has this been cleaned up. You might remember this if you watched the Sopranos

or if you watched Paterson a Jim Jarmusch movie ( I just love Jim Jarmusch movies and I had just watched Paterson on the plane a couple days before we went there. It is a beautiful movie!) Anyway- it is a very cool place.

Coming back into JC it is always wonderful to be greeted by David

and see other murals along the way

in the dingy weird industrial side streets close to the entrance of the Holland Tunnel – maybe what visiting people see as the ugly NJ …and where I see grungy beauty

and thinking to myself- you guys just have no clue how beautiful NJ actually is ;)

And last pic- this little pop-up- poetry store in the pedestrian area -that was fun and the poem he wrote for my godson and me was:

hands are heavy

bones made to break

hearts born to stop

and still we toss them all

rugged and raw toward…infinity

we are strange adventurers

always moving forward

bold and full of love.


Love it- yes we are strange adventurers !!! Hope you are having a wonderful day and enjoyed this stroll- see you soon in the hood.

Comments (4)

  • Sue Clarke

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    Gotta love Bowie (as Aladdin Sane here).
    The poet on the street is great fun as well.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      So true Sue- so sad he passed away! Hope you have a gorgeous weekend!

      Reply

  • Karen Bearse

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    Great read! Love the pics such a cool neighborhood

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Thank you Karen – I do love living here a lot – it is always changing and there is always something I haven*t seen.

      Reply

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Workshop at Nat’s Place- Stroll Through The Hood Wall Hanging Oct. 28

Come to my place!

I’m super excited to announce that I will be teaching an extra special workshop right here in my home in Jersey City, NJ on October 28th, 2017! I invite you to my home, and my hood ;) for the Stroll Through the Hood – Mixed Media Wall Hanging workshop.

We will be creating 3 charming little scenic wall hangings using Ampersand Clayboards, stamps, stencils, various acrylic media, and a whole lotta creative camaraderie. It’ll be a relaxed afternoon of artmaking and a peek inside my world in Jersey City. I’ll share with you some new techniques and you’ll come away with 3 unique wall hangings for your home, office, or maybe even gifting.

Sign up here – Space is limited!

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Stroll Through the Hood – August 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

I know I have posted photos of this view from Liberty State Park several times- but for me it just doesn’t get old!

Here is a newly painted tower at the edge of the park by Mr Mustart.

Kind of in the hood – a little stroll on the Highline early in the morning – what a great time to be there – and seing a little glimpse of a mural by PixelPancho.

And on the walk to the subway a mural by Osgemeos – I love the pants- they are made off all kinds of different flags.

In the East Village this awesome door – love the patterns, the hair, the writing :)

 

Close by the former Adath Jeshurun of Jassy Synagogue, which I believe now has artist studios in it – I hope it is not just abandoned. What a great building.

In the Bowery a Shepard Fairey – I love how the wall is decaying and the purple paint underneath is crackling through again.

And in Jersey City this mural by Nychos

On a construction wall around the corner a paste up by Dylon Egon

And of course…as I am such a dork for elephants …and btw- this has been a block from my place for a long time – how did I miss it so far – by Mr. Prvrt

And last but not least my new fire red bike with which I am strolling through the hood a lot this summer. As you can see I found a piece of drift wood on the water side on that tour, so of course that had to come with me ;)

Hope you enjoyed this stroll and that you had a great time strolling around in your own hood for some inspiration as well.

Comments (1)

  • Sue Clarke

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    As always it was nice to see what you discovered on your stroll.
    I love older buildings and especially like the photo Adath Jeshurun of Jassy Synagogue.
    BTW, I started to read your book while on vacation and took lots of pics looking at sculptures on an outdoor tour and went back to the cottage and did a mixed media page based on the inspiration that I got from one of them.
    I don’t think that the art based on a specific inspiration “clicked” for me before reading your book.
    So thanks!

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Artful Adventures – Tina Walker

  

Hello again from the Creative Squad! Today we have a gorgeous art journal spread from Tina Walker that uses my Beacon stencil, the Stroll Through the Hood #1 and #2 stamp sets, and this month’s theme: Artful Adventures. Are you planning an Artful Adventure this summer? Whether it’s a day at the beach or a full blown International Vacation, don’t forget to take the time to soak up the uniqueness of your new surroundings and gather some inspiration for future artmaking. This month we’re turning to Nat’s new book Artful Adventures in Mixed Media, to help us find inspiration as we travel. We’ll be noticing color, shape, texture and more and then we’ll be taking that to the studio to help inspire some mixed media projects. Join us in the adventure!


Hi! Tina Walker here today with a new month and a new theme. August’s theme is Artful Adventures and we are continuing the celebration of Nat’s new book ‘Artful Adventures in Mixed Media’. We will be using inspiration from our summer travels to create a mixed media project. I was super excited when I saw this month’s theme as I had recently took a short trip to Washington DC. And Nat’s stencil and stamps collections are perfect for the project I had in mind. Let’s get to it!

During my mini vacation to Washington, I took many pictures of the government buildings and historic sites. One particular photo, of the Capital building, inspired me to create. Here’s my inspiration photo.

Using the image of the Capital, I sketched the general shape into my journal. (for this spread, I choose to work in my large, 8x11in journal. I wanted plenty of room to work). Not being a sketch artist, I took liberal direction on specific building designs and shapes. Once I had the rough shape of the capital, I began working on the background of my page.

Apply Texture Paste with the Beacon stencil over the entire background. Let dry completely.

Add watercolors over the entire background, working around the sketched and stenciled areas. I graduated deep blues to light tans on my page. I love how the watercolors pool and blend, especially around the stenciled shapes.

To create a representation of all Americans, past, present, and future, stamp several building images from both the Stroll through the Hood 1 and 2 stamp sets. Since I was using multiple stamps, I wanted to ensure proper placement before stamping. I stamped them onto a transparency first, so I could move them around the page before committing to the stamp.

In order to create a cohesive look across all sketched, stenciled, and stamped images, paint with watercolors, then doodle over the images with a white pen.

The finished page had such a powerful and graphic image, no words were needed. 😊

Do you ever use photographs as inspire for your art? I would love to see what you create.

I hope you enjoyed my project today. Have a great day!


Thank you Tina for this beautiful page and for showing us how your Artful Adventures helped inspire it! Tina used the following supplies (some are affiliate links):



Play along with us too: I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Comments (4)

  • Karen Bearse

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    Really love the drawing of the capital building. Lots of inspiration here!

    Reply

  • Karen Bearse

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    Cool ideas!! Love your page. I need to start drawing!

    Reply

  • Yvonne Garner

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    Love this! Is the domed building a new stamp?Thanks! Yvinne

    Reply

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Stroll Through the Hood – July 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. It is part of my philosophy about Artful Adventures in Mixed Media – which is the subject of my book. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

When I had to go to get an MRI after hurting my shoulder playing table tennis (yes…you heard right) – I had to walk underneath the turnpike – ugly ugly- but there was a bit of Norman Kirby Fence Art to make the feel better. The funniest thing – the tongue on the right moved in the wind :)

I love how the color bands come out of the R and the movement in this mural.

This is the Historic Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery again – they had an Oddity Market there one weekend and ha- that is a great location for this. I loved seeing the Before I die… Wall there. I thought it was so clever to have it at a cemetery what a fitting place for this public art project. I did a painting a long time ago called “Before I die, I want to become the person that I am ” – but I think it is time to do this again in my art journal and think about it :)

I also found humor in seeing those to guys in sitting in the grass in between the headstones typing on their cellphones ;)

Ok – this one is a bit cheated- as it wasn’t in my walkable hood – but close enough – I went to a U2 concert and our General Admission spot was spot on ;) Well…it pays when you go with friends who are die-hard U2 fans and know the ins and outs of where to stand at the tour- LOL. Love the swirls- the whole concert was a feast for the eyes.

Of course there was 4th July celebration – we had a small party on our deck and saw several fireworks at the same time -here to the left the NYC Macy’s firework on and on the right at the same time the Jersey City firework.

And this one was apparently a “personal” one  – in the neighborhood – but I take it-as the next day was my birthday- so basically I get free fireworks for my birthday- not too shabby, right? This reminded me of ink/paint splatters.

And those here are also a bit cheated- but hey- I am the boss of my hood- LOL- and this month Manhattan belonged to it too- I mean…I can basically just spit over the river from my hood. We went to the Freedom Tower with family as part of a family day. What a view. Look at the reflection in the skyscraper – I love that- I want to do something with this in one of my paintings.

And oh man ….amazing. It never ceases to amaze me to look at Manhattan from that perspective – it looks all so unreal and orderly and cool. It made me really itch to continue my big Manhattan painting, I am working on for a while now.

And – just because- Jersey City from the Manhattan side- HA  – at Battery Park. I love the juxtaposition between plants and garden and skyscrapers.

And just for fun – I am sure my sister in law at a different idea when she wanted a photo of the girls- but here we are, my niece and I being goofy and my sis in law being her awesome self ;)

Hope you enjoyed this stroll through the hood – until next time!

Comments (6)

  • Jackie P Neal

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    Great stroll Nathalie!
    And happy birthday to you and America! This is your first 4th of July being an actual citizen of the US -right? I hope it was special for you! Congrats!
    hugs,Jackie

    Reply

  • Robin S.

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    I truly enjoy your strolls through the ‘hood. I may have made a comment like this before, but I am a country girl through and through and am amazed by how much beauty there is to be found if a person is willing to look for it with an open mind; you are a constant source of inspiration to me. LOVE that reflection in the skyscraper!! Keep up your creativity, imagination, and free spirit!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Awe – thank you so much Robin! Have a wonderful and creative week!

      Reply

  • Sue Clarke

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    Love the reflection in the side of the building and what a view of the city!
    I totally enjoy strolls through your hood especially since they are so different from mine.
    I see wildlife and no street art (bummer).
    Happy belated birthday and keep that inspiration coming.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Thank you sue! Yeah – wildlife is pretty cool too – that is what I am missing here ;)

      Reply

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Stroll Through the Hood – June 2017

Time for a Stroll Through the Hood . Strolls through my hood get me out of my studio, they help me unstuck and often I get inspired by what I see and to get new ideas to create something. Here are some photos that I gathered in the last couple weeks.

I found this sign embedded in the pavement around the corner of my home- love it- but I am also intrigued who put it there and why.

Liberty State park always a great sight – it calls for another painting.

Love all the amazing pattern spray painted to the house – I should do something similar in an art journal page with my stencils

Besides that I agree with the sentiment on the wall- I love the font :)

And hey- how can you not be inspired by sweet Winnie’s face  :) Winnie is my friend’s dog and she loves celebrating birthdays with us ;)

New shoes to stroll through the hood …unfortunately they need some serious strolling before they will be comfortable- LOL

A cool old cheese sign at a flea market

I loved this sign at my Physical Therapist – would look great in an art journal too.

And after a crazy thunderstorm this huge rainbow showed up

And I took my new book Artful Adventures in Mixed Media on a stroll with me and my friend and photographer Sarah Baumberger took some photos of me and the book. It was a lot of fun.

I hope you enjoyed this month’s stroll through the hood – until next month <3

Comments (10)

  • Sue Clarke

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    Woof woof Winnie!
    Love those new shoes Nat…they will become comfy as the leather breaks in (I hope).
    That rainbow is AWESOME and the painted building is uplifting.
    Thanks for the stroll.

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Yeah – I hope those shoes get better – LOL- they are some problem shoes ;)

      Reply

  • Rae Missigman

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    oh I love these so much and always look forward to these posts. Thanks for sharing. Can’t wait for things to slow down over here so I can get back to my own “strolls.” Hugs!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Awe so good to see you my friend! Hope you have time soon to get back to your strolls. Huge hugs back!!!

      Reply

  • Nancy Sapp

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    Thanks for all the neat pix you posted of “your Hood.” I HAVE to tell you – you’re so cute! And when you & Julie Fei-Fan Balzer get together on videos, I just crack up! My wish (unattainable, I’m afraid) is to spend an afternoon – painting & doodling with you 2! I’d probably be SO shocked, I wouldn’t be able to do anything but just stare at you two.

    A Fan,
    Grandma Nancy

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      LOL- thank you Nancy. Yes Julie and I make quite a team too ;) Maybe some day it will work out – we have been teaching together a couple times, so you never know ;) Have a gorgeous weekend!

      Reply

    • Sue Clarke

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      Ha ha Grandma Nancy. I’m with you. I’ve taken an in-person workshop with Julie and it was great!
      I’m sure that one with Nat would also be great! The two of them together and I might just faint.
      Silly I am but my two art crushes are together a bunch.

      Reply

      • Nathalie Kalbach

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        LOL- of course you know my classes are WAYYYYYY funnier than Julie’s ? Just kidding – LOL. Love teaching with her- and I promise you wouldn’t faint – we wanna keep you . Loves and have a wonderful weekend!

        Reply

  • Delores

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    Thanks for letting us share some of your strolls via the beautiful photos! I am really enjoying your book too!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Awe- thank you so much Delores! Hope you have a wonderful long weekend ahead! <3

      Reply

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Out and About – Michelle Rydell

  

Hello from the Creative Squad!  This month the Creative Squad will be playing along with my Stroll Challenge and today Michelle Rydell is sharing a really cool canvas panel using my Stroll Through the Hood #2 stamp set, and working with the prompt words Sky and Loud and the theme Out and About – Sometimes it’s hard to see all the cool and inspiring stuff that’s right under our noses. This month we hope you will join us in our 30 day Stroll Challenge and get Out and About where you live, and find some local inspiration.


I took a bit of a different direction with my prompt word – Loud. You see, when I lived in the city, there was loudness everywhere and I loved it; but now that I live in the country, the neighborhood is just the opposite. It’s very quiet, and I love that too. So I had to think about it awhile; and then it hit me. What’s loud in a different way, and also connects my old neighborhood in the city to my new one in the country? The gloriously loud colors of the sunset!

This was my photo for the prompt “sky,” and I’m also using it for “loud.”

My idea was to recreate the colors of a city sunset with watercolors. Here is the step-by-step…

I first stamped the Main Station and Warehouse stamps from Nat’s Stroll Through the Hood #2 stamp set numerous times onto dictionary paper, to give it a bit of a grungy look…

I cut out the buildings and arranged them on the background till I had them how I wanted them to be. This gave me an idea of where to start with the watercolors…

I put the buildings to the side, and started on the sky. In order to create soft edges and allow the colors to blend, I wet the paper first… From there I slowly started building the layers of color, always allowing them to bleed together. They were very light at first, but with each layer got more intense…

Stars were added to the sky by flicking some high flow acrylic with a stiff brush…

When the page was completely dry, I pasted down the buildings with a glue stick. The warehouse in the back was colored with a light grey tombow marker, to make it recede a bit…

I outlined each building with a stabilo pencil and added water to grunge it up a bit. I also added a mixture of stabilo pencil and grey acrylic to create a street in front of the buildings…

I finished off the page with a quote and outline done with paint marker; and some journaling on the bottom done with a white gel pen.


Thank you Michelle for a beautiful spread and a gorgeous cityscape :) She used these supplies – some links are affiliate links:



Play along with us this month and join the 30 day Artful Adventures Stroll Challenge! I love to see how you interpret our monthly themes. Email me how you used my stencils and stamps with the theme and email me an image – I would love to share your projects in my “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Comments (5)

  • Diane T

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    Loved the city/country connection and the quote at the bottom. Great job!

    Reply

  • Sue Clarke

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    LOVE how you used the stamps and the colors you chose for the page.

    Reply

  • Julie Tucker

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    This is gorgeous! LOVING the colors and the buildings!!!!!!!!!!

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