A feast of purples


2017 is my year full of color, each month I dedicate to a new color: “TWELVTY” – 12 colors in 12 months, a trip around the color wheel. And what a trip!

July has been a feast of violet purples. 

Each month gets a few pages in the TWELVTY art journal, where I dive deep into pattern making and monochrome mixed media doodling.

Layer upon layer upon layer.
Circles in sqaures in circles in grids.
Stitching on ribbon on page edges.
Patterns of patterns.
Doodles and scribbles and more.
 

 

In August We move round to Red-Violet: from magenta to mauve. Good times!

 

 


All through this summer I’m offering a special discount in my Etsy Shop to all the folks on my mailing list – so clickety-hop aboard today if you want to snag a bargain!

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(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color)

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My Indigo June


Twelve Colors in Twelve Months: 2017 is my year full of color. I called it Twelvty. Because that’s just the way my mind works… and because I like made up words.

Each month I take another step around the color wheel, and focus on making art in just this color.

I like the liminal places – like dawn and dusk – neither one nor the other – just on that tipping edge in between. So naturally, I’m especially drawn to the tertiary colors (which is great – there are six –  so every other month I’m back into one of my favourite color zones).

 

Last month’s color was blue-violet: the moody-mauvy, midnight-indigo, and the fragrant bluebell & lavender space in the spectrum.

Last month also marked the half way point through the year, which is a place I like to step back and reflect.

These are some thoughts on the story so far.

 

Each month, along with its own color, has its own flavour, it’s own particular energy. It moves in its own speed, and I’m coming to realise, this is something over which I have next to no control.

Each month as I focus my creativity in the current color, I’m learning to bide quietly and see what comes out. To begin, I thought this was from the associations each color invites, but now I’m  seeing it’s also from the cumulative volume of spirit this entire investigation is amassing. 

The power of a single pointed focus in color is in its absolute simplicity.

Restricting the dither attached to one choice frees up space to play with the others, and to maximise them beyond the usual stopping point: tone and shade, materials and media, size and shape. Or then stripping it all back to its origin: just pure color. 

 

 

I’m  compiling an art journal of my ideas and experiments as I move through the year. It’s a re-purposed world atlas (cos this is an adventure – it seemed fitting). Each month’s has about 4 pages of playing space, and at the midway point this book is bulging with inspiration, expectation, and possibilities.

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Would you like to see this month’s pages?

If you enjoyed that, you can see the previous month’s pages here

 


All through this summer I’m offering a special discount in my Etsy Shop to all the folks on my mailing list – so clickety-hop aboard today if you want to snag a bargain!

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(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

Your email is utterly safe to me. I will ensure it is guarded at all times by dragons. Hungry dragons.

 

Flashback: Color, Color, Color!


IMG_9429Last year I had the great pleasure of producing an online class for 21 Secrets all about color. (If you know my art – you’ll know this is my thing!)

In the class I teach you how to make a really fun variation on a color wheel, using collage and mixed media painting techniques, to inspire new ways of combining colors in your mixed media art. This would be fab as a school holiday project for creative little ones!

And another 23 teachers (yes – this time there are more than the usual 21) share how they use color in their art.

This week there’s a Flashback Sale!

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From 1am PST on Monday July 3rd
(CLICK HERE for time zone conversion)
to 11:59pm PST on Wednesday, July 5th 

You can grab Color, Color, Color! For just $77
(a discount of $21).

Click Here & Enter Coupon Code: FLASHBACK

 

(By purchasing through the links in this post, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.)  

 


All through this summer I’m offering a special discount in my Etsy Shop to all the folks on my mailing list – so clickety-hop aboard today if you want to snag a bargain!

penngregory_Mailchimp12TEtsyBanner

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

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Collections


I love sets of things, I love arrangements & collections.

When I hear a song I love, I have to scurry off as soon as I can to find the album it’s from, find the artist, track down the other tracks. Fall in love again.

When my eyes are magnetised by a piece of art, I race to seek out the artist and soak in everything else they’ve created.

I’ve done this with authors and poets, actors, directors, blogs and my current jam: podcasts. I get hooked. I have to absorb all I can until my attention is hooked someplace else. 

This energy directs me, and now I’ve identified it, I can see how it plays out in all kinds of ways.

I’ve had attachment to all sorts of obsession, with habits and ritual, with a certain style of living or eating or being, with a form of minutiae that maybe only I notice, but it’s place in my days has been critical. For the moment. Then gone.

Sometimes it’s a few days, sometimes a few years, or anywhere in between. The more life I live the more context for this observation and the more patterns I can see.

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Right now I’m channelling this obsessive method into making. I’m filling every moment, pouring every ounce of energy into making, and will do so until the next hook catches me. That maybe tomorrow – maybe next year – I’ll show you when.

It’s manifesting itself right now as a collection of paper and fabric collages, I’m calling the Peacock & Mermaid collection. This is part two. I don’t know if there will be a part three – I might get called away by another muse.

All of the pieces shown here are available in my Etsy shop. The first part of the collection sold out the first day – so hop over quick if you’d like one of them in your home!


Would you like to get sporadic updates on my thoughts and drawings delivered right to your inbox? Hop onto my email list right here.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be hidden in a secret place, I will feed it tea and biscuits as required. 

What 3 months of color looks like…


These are the art journal pages from the first three months of Twelvty: This is the story so far.

January: Yellow

 

When I look at these pages I’m whisked back the to adventures and explorations of the first month of this year long adventure. Using just one color brings out nuances and subtleties too quiet to hear above the sound of other colors. 

I chose yellow as a starting place in the color wheel because it is simple, it is small. 

There’s not much space or contrast in yellow – take it darker and you have shades of ochre, tan into browns. Only a smidge lighter before you hit white. No room to step either way before falling into yellow-orange or yellow-green, and they have their own months in Twevlty.

Yellow is compact with well defined parameters. 

 

February: Yellow-Green

Yellow-green: the first tertiary color we explored – and suddenly there’s a depth of tone to play with. Luscious lime to opulent olive.  Chartreuse. Char-freaking-treuse, people! 

And here’s the beginning of the “is it or isn’t it?” questions that will bob up all through this year. When does it stop being yellow and start being green? Where’s the spot in the middle? We’re navigating a continuum, there are no strict boundaries. It’s all part of the fun 😉

March: Green

Another month, another step round, deeper into greens. Each collage scrap and cut out shape here has a story and will serve to remind me of ideas that were born and then took a turn I didn’t foresee. I’m only the vehicle through which these ideas come to being, sometimes I forget this and try to control them. But, like water,  they find their own way.

 

This book is the place a leave seeds of ideas to incubate: reminders to a me-in-the-future. We’re nearing the end of a month of blue-green as I type this to you, and about to dive into the ocean of blue for May. Check back to see the cool bluey loveliness that emerges!

 


Would you like to get sporadic updates on my thoughts and drawings delivered right to your inbox? Hop onto my email list right here.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up in blankets. I will bring it tea and biscuits on Wednesdays.

art is everywhere…


…but you knew that, right?

I’ve been looking at some of my old sketchbooks. Back in 2011 I did a textile art workshop. The topic for our designs was grids.

The week before I’d been to the Kniting & Stitching Show at Ally Pally – I came home with bags of new goodies to play with, and a camera full of ideas.

I was really struck by these images of the frondy leaves against the metal framework of the glass roof. Grids!! These were the grids I focussed on at the workshop…

…which quickly evolved into these…

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You can see the real frondiness of the cut out pages come to life here…

The magic of this sketchbook, even 5 years on, I still get new ideas rush at me as I flick through the pages.

Do you look back through old art journals and sketchbooks? Do they keep sparking new ideas even years later? Next time you’ve got a few minutes spare and they’re ready to hand, open one up somewhere in the middle and see if it stirs some long forgotten inspiration. Seeds of thoughts you planted way-back-when. They might yet grow into something beautiful!

 


Would you like to get sporadic updates on my thinkings and doings delivered right to your inbox? Hop onto my email list right here.

(and I’ll send you my ebook A Year full of Color as a thank you for joining)

Your email is utterly safe to me. It will be wrapped up snug in a fluffy blanket & nestled with a puppy until the spring arrives. I will bring it tea and a bun if it wakes up.

 

that time again! (1 of 2)


Looking back at things I made in 12 months makes the year stretch back further. January feels like a lifetime ago now…

My 2016 in art journalling has looked like this

January

February

March

April

May

June

The tail of the year, the time to look back & look forward, funny cos in so many ways it’s an arbitrary number, tomorrow will still be tomorrow whatever we call it. But I enjoy the process of evaluating where I am in this life from time to time, so now’s as good as any!

Join me tomorrow and I’ll show you the second half of my 2016 in art journaling.


Want to make 2017 brighter and more colorful?

Join me in TWELVTY!  beginning January 1st.

Can’t wait that long? sign up below and get a lovingly hand crafted ebook all about color right now!!  

…then join TWELVTY…obvs! 😉 

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Be well, my friends, Much love to you all X

**********************************

(Your email is absolutely safe with me, I’ll just pop by and check up on it time to time, feed it biscuits, plump up its cushions, that sort of thing.)

 

 

 

New Moon Momentum


Last month I began a new practice of creating an art journal vision-board type spread with the New Moon.

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New Moon Vision: Nov/Dec 2016

I’ve used the new moon as a time to sow seeds of intention for many years, usually in a journal or diary. This got the intentions out of my imagination in the form of words on paper, but within a day or two they were lost under the ensuing pages.

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Transform Your Life: I have high hopes for this book!

Now I have this visual reminder I can keep in my eye line in the studio – for now it’s propped up against a shelf opposite my workspace. The simple beauty of it being in a book means it can travel with me wherever I go. (Even though it’s quite a BIG book – it likely won’t travel that far!)

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A Lifetime’s Obsession with Collective Inspiration: I am the culmination of my thoughts so far

It’s now the second time I’ve done it … and I’ve lived through hundreds of new moons, so it’s early to judge… but so far I like this method much more.

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Bright, Vibrant, Unique Art: subconscious reminders… in case I forget!

I expect over time it will evolve to include more writing too, the process will fine tune and evolve, as all things do.

This and last month both have writing under the collage, so in that sense those words are even more buried than usual. Meanwhile it’s a place for all those collage bits I snipped out of the lifetime’s supply of magazines I dismantled last year.

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Heavy on Metaphor: planting seeds for new ideas

Do you have a new moon practice? or a vision board practice?

How do you find they work for you? I’d love to know. 

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Happy Serendipity of Collage 

This Moon/Month I’m pushing all my energy into launching my biggest project yet:

The TWELVTY program.  After a final flurry of readying, I opened the doors yesterday, and the first subscribers jump right in. I’ve got a really good feeling about this – we’re building a community of makers and doers, artists and creatives, and together we’ll explore how color impacts our lives, our moods, our work and our art. We’re going to delve deep into one color at a time and soak up all its lovely juicy spirit.

If you want to find out more, it’s all here on my website. If you’ve got any questions or want to find out more, comment below or message me through my site and I’ll be happy to answer all I can.

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Let’s join together in 2017 and Create the Marvellous!

Turbulence


It seems to be speeding up, but is it though? is it really? seeing it telescope up and out as time passes and individual perspectives shift. And the volume’s winding up all the while.

(this image is from my new-moon-vision-board-book .  not as a statement of fear or doom, but shift and transformation) 

 

But FFS, it’s relentless.

Right? I mean, isn’t it?

It doesn’t let up.

I can’t process it in any particular order, so I spend little bits of day here in my world, releasing confusion into my art journal.

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This is a world populated by mismatch and clash.  In that sense, perhaps it isn’t so different from the one outside.

Looking out, looking in. Trying to digest. Thinking forward, plans to make a positive contribution and fighting the voice inside that laughs in the face of that notion.


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If you’re disconbobulated in scrambled emotions, if you’re feeling helpless, if you’re full of fear, my thoughts are with you. Much love, my friends.

New Moon – New Plans


New Moon – New Plans

I got back from my travels last month so wiped out with jetlag, post giddy-with-deleriously-excited induced tiredfulness that I lost most use out of almost a full fortnight. Then no time at all later I went and took off again. I’m back now, this time long enough to catch my own tail, to take a deep breath. And again. And to make some plans. 

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Last weekend brought a new moon, which on this side of the world was the second new moon in the month making it a black moonI’ve loved the mythology, the tradition, the woo-woo – the whatever you want to call it – of aligning with the lunar cycle since I was a wee scrap. It’s part of my way of fumbling through this life.  The new moon is the time to sow seeds – literal and metaphorical. Actual plant seeds want you to pay attention to the season for best success, but the seeds of ideas can be planted any time. I like the belief they get a head start when fuelled by intention and belief.

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Inspired by a couple of dear friends I’ve met this year, this new moon I was inspired to begin this new moonly ritual.

A New Moon – Moodboard – Art Journal – Scrapbook. … Snappy title, right? ha!

The idea was introduced to me by  Kate Robertson, I love it so much as it brings together a bunch of things I already do – the art journalling, the new moon intention setting, my unending love of cutting up and gluing together images… I haven’t moodboarded much before, for want of getting around to it, and finding a space for the thing to live, so to have it in a book is the perfect solution for me. Said book is now propped up open at the current view and in my line of vision where I sit and do my artly doings.

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The process was enriched by the influence of Hali Karla, who I was delighted to meet up with in real life on my travels. Hali is an artist, intuitively in tune with an astrological practice that she weaves into her creativity, she provides an Art Practice New Moon audio recording each month you can listen to here. On Sunday I settled myself down with the big ole box of magazine pics I’ve been hoarding forever, a big new art journal, and as I listened to Hali’s words I chose the images and thoughts that shone out to me as what I want to bring into the coming month.

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These shorter darker days call in more than ever the warm bright glowing colours for me, for cosiness and comfort, for the mental hibernation and reconbobulation I’m looking to toward the end of a year of big changes and personal re-routing.

I’ve got a sense of releasing the past, letting go and lightening up. Looking into the place where the dreamworld meets the real world, matching the edges together and seeing what I can make next.

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In doing this I’m piecing together new plans for 2017, plans I intend to nurture this month. (Much more on that soon)