At the Corner of Good and Bad – Art Journal

I had a lot of fun with this spread. I carved a big stamp of a building close by here in Jersey City with a mural by Shepard Fairey and used it for bags I made for the holiday market. But then of course I also wanted to use it in my journal.

I printed on a page that I had previously used as a “clean up” page and then painted over the tamped images with acrylic paints.

I added some hand drawn imagery and some of my Stamps as well

I love the contrast of very clean and fine line stamps and then the bold hand carved stamp. And all the texture – actual and optical that I created with brushstrokes, and spray paints.

That was fun :)

Here are some of the supplies besides Acrylic Paints I used for this spread:

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Art Stroll: Andy Warhol at the Whitney, NYC

Last week Kim and I took a day off and for our annual Christmas Party at the n*Studio we decided to go into the city to visit the Andy Warhol Exhibition at the Whitney and have a nice lunch afterwards. It was a wonderful day!

Warhol began his series of Flower paintings in 1964. He used an image of four hibiscus flowers from a magazine and, with the help of assistants, silkscreened it across more than five hundred individual canvases, methodically producing paintings in different sizes and seemingly endless color combinations.

“In the mid-1960s Warhol employed carpenters to construct numerous plywood boxes identical in size and shape to supermarket cartons. The finished sculptures were virtually indistinguishable from their cardboard supermarket counterparts. Warhol first exhibited these at the Stable Gallery in 1964, cramming the space with stacked boxes that recalled a cramped grocery warehouse. He invited collectors to buy them by the stack, and, though they did not sell well, the boxes caused controversy. In reference to his boxes, Warhol later said that he “wanted something ordinary,” and it was this mundane, commercial subject matter that infuriated the critics. The perfectly blank “machine-made” look of Warhol’s boxes contrasted sharply with the gestural brushstrokes of abstract expressionist paintings.”

Would you buy one? (if money was no obstacle)

Sorry- it was so crowded it was hard to take any pictures LOL – but this was too iconic to let it just go …

Loved seeing his gold leafed shoes – the detail are actually quite fascinating on those

Love his sketches the most

The early stages of his work and concepts.

I love seeing the early work that shows where things were going -stencils, marks, people, lines …

In embracing the image of the Coca-Cola bottle as fine art, Warhol opened up the possibility of linking the worlds of commercial and fine art.

Death and Desaster- depicting magazine and newspaper headlines in oversized images.

“Warhol’s depiction of Superman is based on a drawing by Kurt Schaffenberger from the comic Superman’s Girl Friend Lois Lane (April 1961). Warhol’s decision to use Superman as a subject may offer a biting commentary on the heroic machismo associated with Abstract Expressionist “action” painting, or a queer reading of the Man of Steel, or both. Warhol displayed Superman and four other paintings shortly after they were made in a window display at the Bonwit Teller department store (below), where he and many other artists produced window displays.”

“Warhol based this composition on a small advertisement for a plastic surgeon that ran in the National Enquirer in early April 1961, which he had enlarged and projected in order to trace it onto the surface of the canvas-a precursor to the silkscreen technique he pioneered the following year. The work was first exhibited in the window of Bonwit Teller, the Fifth-Avenue department store, in early April 1961 as part of a display that included five other early paintings by the artist.”


Loved this – I had just used this very same image in a class for image transfers and seeing this silk printed with a similar effect in a big size was quite cool.

Well – another iconic one

“Warhol was as captivated by the lives of the ordinary as he was the rich and famous. This work was created from the Newsweek article, “Two Tuna Sandwiches,” about two Detroit mothers, neighbors who ate tuna sandwiches while they watched their children play and, two days later, the women died. The two housewives died via poisoning from tainted tuna. It shows how harmless consumerism can lead to accidental death. Warhol explored the brief and tragic fame bestowed on people after violent and unexpected termination of life.”

“Warhol chose the image of Mao—then the Chairman of the Chinese Communist Party—after reading news coverage of President Richard Nixon’s trip to the People’s Republic of China in February 1972. An unprecedented act of Cold War diplomacy, Nixon’s trip marked the first visit by a sitting American president to the nation, which at the time was considered an enemy of the state.”

When I went to the Andy Warhol museum in Pittsburgh I was fascinated by the collaborative works Warhol made with Jean-Michel Basquiat. “According to Basquiat, Warhol would begin the paintings with “something very concrete, like a newspaper headline or product logo, and then I would sort of deface it.” Depending on the work, this process could continue for two or three rounds, until a balance was reached between Warhol’s hand-painted images and Basquiat’s abstract gestures, text, numbers, and pictographs. ”

“Unlike in his other portraits, Warhol did not name the subjects of this series. They were not, however, truly anonymous. Marsha P. Johnson (bottom right), for example, had been a key player in the Stonewall rebellion that sparked the struggle for LGBTQ rights and, like Wilhelmina Ross, was a member of the performance group the Hot Peaches. In recent years, research into the other sitters’ identities has allowed their names to be instated. Warhol’s portrait of Marsha P. Johnson captures the confidence, warmth, and charm that made her a beloved member of New York’s queer community. Johnson was a pioneering trans-rights activist: she participated in the 1969 Stonewall uprising and later, with her friend and fellow trans activist Sylvia Rivera, founded Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR), a political organization that advocated for the rights of queer and trans people and sex workers, particularly those who were homeless or incarcerated.”

What are the symbols of a country? Thought provoking? Was he political?


“For a series of still lifes begun in 1975, Warhol worked with assistants to make theatrically lit studio photographs of a variety of objects, such as a skull or a hammer and sickle, positioning them to cast shadows so dramatic that they took on identities of their own. In the years that followed, he created a number of paintings based on these photographs. It was through these investigations into photography—a medium most commonly associated with accurate representation—that Warhol was able to make works that read more overtly as abstraction. Beginning in 1978, he made a radical shift and did away with the objects entirely, producing an expansive series of more than one hundred paintings focused only on shadows, which he titled just that: Shadows. In these works Warhol freed himself from his Pop subjects by experimenting with something close to pure abstraction. Yet he never completely divorced himself from his sources, maintaining his connection to the everyday world while still playing with the problem of how images generate meaning.”


I love what someone said that there is no “supreme court of art and he experimented with the boundaries of art is” It is a great exhibition – I would def. go again but in the new year and during the week again as it the museum was stuffed even early at 10am when we went.

I hope you enjoyed the is little Art Stroll! Hope to take you on another one soon :)

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Be Gentle – Art Journaling Spread

“Only the gentle are every really strong” James Dean

Oh handsome James…aren’t you right – swoon. I played with my Mini Hex Foam Stamps and got my inner pink out

Love how foam stamps create texture – actual and visual – used with acrylic paints. One of the many reasons why I recommend actually cleaning them :)

Here are some supplies I used besides Acrylic Paints

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Free Shipping Day is Here!

If you spend more than $20 today (December 14th, 2018) in my online shop, you can get free shipping in the US. Just enter the coupon code DEC14SHIP when you are checking out and all those goodies will get shipped to you for free! Who doesn’t like a little free this time of year?

It’s a great time to buy foam stamps like some of my bigger and bulkier favorites like the Santa Fe Positive Negative set:

Or the uber popular Midtown set for your next urban jungle :)

Or how about a few of those rubber stamp sets that are already on sale like my Stroll Through the Hood 1:

Stroll Through the Hood #1

Or my pick for anyone who loves architecture, the Stroll Around the Block set:

Of course there are mugs, and giclee prints, and STENCILS too.


You get the picture – spend more than $20 in my Online Shop and your order ships free in the US. Hurry up. Sale ends at 11:59pm EST tonight, December 14th, 2018.

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You Have The Power – Art Journal

“You always had the power my dear, you just had to learn it for yourself.” – Wizard of Oz

I guess I am already ready for spring – I wish I had the power to make it come fast ;) I played with different green acrylic paints and my Buenos Aires Stencil.

I painted the lady with acrylic paints and added some scribbles using pencils and pens.

Some mark making in pink for some color pop – this was fun to make.

Besides acrylic pains I used the following:

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Warm Wishes – Josefine Fouarge


Warm Wishes from the Creative Squad’s Josefine Fouarge today! She is sharing a beautifully layered tag, inspired by the quiet evenings this time of year and using my Circle Drive, Midtown Set, Weave, and Manhattan foam stamps. The theme is Warm Wishes – For many cultures around the world, December is a holiday season filled with celebrations and good cheer. The Creative Squad is taking this month to send Warm Wishes to all our readers!

Can you believe that the year is nearly over? Where did it go? One good thing about the end of the year though is the holiday season. Time to calm down a little, plus I always enjoy the quiet nights. Those were the inspiration for my December project for the Creative Squad.

I used a chipboard tag as my base and covered it in patterns using several ArtFoamies designs from Nathalie and paints. You can see it here:

Nathalie’s designs are great for layering. Even though they are all different, it doesn’t look “too much” when you layer a few patterns on top of each other.

It’s actually really interesting. You can look through all of them and see the bottom layer shining through.

Warm wishes from the Creative Squad. I hope you can enjoy your holidays in the upcoming weeks and get a great start into the new year.

Thank you Josefine and we wish you a wonderful holiday season and happy new year too :) Here are some of the supplies that Josefine used:

Feel inspired? Working on something yourself that you’d like to share?  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 next  “n*Spiration From Around the Globe“.

Comments (1)

  • Pami


    Oh, so inspiring! Had to start right away with some tags :-)


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Currently Digging – Holiday Edition Wish List December 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds that have caught my eye or got my creative juices flowing, and products I am currently digging. And since it is the Holiday Season this is the perfect time to have for you an ultimate list of cool stuff for the holidays. Maybe you add this stuff to your list for Santa or you block out some time to check out an inspiring movie or book. I love everything on this list and I hope you do too!


I just watched this documentary about Beltracchi, a German master forger on Netflix. Beltracchi, together with his wife Helene, sold forgeries of original works by famous artists, including Max Ernst, Heinrich Campendonk, Fernand Léger and Kees van Dongen. What I find interesting is the way how he was able to fool the art work. Rather than copying existing works, he made new paintings in the style of particular artists, creating the illusion of important and logical historical finds. I found this documentary interesting and even if I do not approve of forgery – I found it fascinating how he was able to create paintings so close to those painters’ style but creating something new.

A Model for Matisse is a documentary I watched a while ago and I still think about once in a while. “In 1941, Sister Jacques-Marie – then Monique Bourgeois – was a 21-year-old nursing student and amateur artist living in Nice. She answered an ad placed by Matisse seeking “a young and pretty night nurse,” and from this humble beginning a beautiful friendship developed. This lovely film documents the story’s personal and historic aspects, presenting Matisse’s never-before filmed hand-painted gouaches and fabrics as well as a rich collection of photographs and archival footage of the aged Matisse working on the Chapel’s ceramics.”


Finding Vivian Maier – another documentary on Netflix. Ever since I read a news article about her a couple years ago, I wanted to watch this movie and I loved it. “Now considered one of the 20th century’s greatest street photographers, Vivian Maier spent her life as a nanny, secretly taking over 100,000 photographs. Hidden during her lifetime, Maier’s work was discovered by pure chance when amateur historian John Maloof ended up with a stash of her photos at an auction. Fascinated, he searched for more—and for the story behind the woman. Now, this unsung art- ist’s strange and riveting life and work are revealed through never-before-seen photographs, films and interviews with dozens who thought they knew her.”



Belonging- A German Reckons with History and Home by Nora Krug – totally hit home with me. The author, who is about the same age as I am moved to the U.S. after growing up in Germany and asking the questions of Germany’s past and how our own family was involved in this dark and horrible time of history. “In her late thirties, after twelve years in the US, Krug realizes that living abroad has only intensified her need to ask the questions she didn’t dare to as a child and young adult. Returning to Germany, she visits archives, conducts research, and interviews family members, uncovering in the process the stories of her maternal grandfather, a driving teacher in Karlsruhe during the war, and her father’s brother Franz-Karl, who died as a teenage SS soldier in Italy. Her extraordinary quest, spanning continents and generations, pieces together her family’s troubling story and reflects on what it means to be a German of her generation.” Just like Krug I did some research in my 30s and collected a lot of document and asked my relatives questions.

“Belonging wrestles with the idea of Heimat, the German word for the place that first forms us, where the sensibilities and identity of one generation pass on to the next. In this highly inventive visual memoir—equal parts graphic novel, family scrapbook, and investigative narrative—Nora Krug draws on letters, archival material, flea market finds, and photographs to attempt to understand what it means to belong to one’s country and one’s family. A wholly original record of a German woman’s struggle with the weight of catastrophic history, Belonging is also a reflection on the responsibility that we all have as inheritors of our countries’ pasts.” And so I might add our responsibility to make sure that something like this never happens again!

 A Place For Us  by Fatima Farheen Mirza is hands down my favorite book of 2018 – the one I cried while reading and held my breath! It is the story of a family, about immigration, misunderstandings, unsaid things that should have been said and said things that should have been unsaid in a family.


My friends at Liquitex sent me the Primary set of their new Acrylic Gouache to try out and I loved playing with it. You know I am a sucker for new art materials especially when they are new paint mediums. These paints are neither really acrylic paints nor real gouache and there is a bit of a curve to get used to them. You have to really treat them as a brand new paint medium in your stash. They dry super fast, why makes them great to use on paper but a bit tough to use on foam stamps for example. They are super matte which makes them great to use in an art journal with an unbelievable vibrancy through their rich pigments which matte acrylic paints often lack.  I also love the new packaging with a nozzle which Liquitex now introduced also to their Soft Body Paints (you can keep those apart as the SB Paint has a white cap).


I couldn’t resist to buy the Florescent Acrylic Gouache Set which I love even more – the colors are screamingly awesome. I still have to play more with those paints to give a total review about them but I can say that they def. are not going to replace my acrylic paint- they are a fun addition in my paint stash and if you are like me in love with color and trying out new things- I recommend putting it on your wish list :)


RubberMoon came out a while ago with new ink pads called Moonlight Duo which have a divided ink pad – the color aka Hue and then a white pad which gives you the opportunity to create tints. The White pad itself is amazing to use on it’s own by the way and once the ink is dried it is permanent. I absolutely love the new fall colors as you can see them on top – a wonderful way to create pattern and backgrounds with stamps and stencils using those inkpads. The Fall colors are Aurora Teal, Space Moos and Nebula Rust.


I bought a ton of the Itoya Doubelheader Calligraphy Pen in Japan and I am so happy they are available here as well. Most of my writing in my art journals is done nowadays with this pen. If you like thicker tipped pens with different options, that are a bit sturdy but still write smooth – I recommend putting this on your wish list …it is a good stocking stuffer :)


I hope you enjoyed the special Edition of Currently Digging. What should I put on my wishlist for the Holidays? Let me know your nifty finds this year in the comments- I would love to check them out …and maybe wish for ;)

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I Heart You – Card

Have you told someone “I love you” today? Here is a quick card for this :)

I used three different acrylic paint colors: teal, black and white, and squeezed out each color in a pea size next to each other. Than I dabbed my cosmetic sponge in it so that each color was on the sponge.

Mixing the colors slightly as I dabbed over my Hamilton Stencil I created some subtle color variations.

Love the pattern and colors

I added my message to my special someone in the circles and done :) Who are you telling today I love you?

Here are some of the the supplies I used

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