Wednesday 1 July 2015

And then it was July ...

Welcome to July - I can't believe we are past the mid way point this year and are now on the downhill run to Christmas - now that is a depressing thought!

This month we hope to inspire you with this wonderful painting by Shirley Charlton (aka Shirlroma) called "Umbrellas, wet street".  We thought it was kind of fitting considering all the rain we have been getting on the east coast.

CRITERIA is to use water (liquid) in some way on your page (ink spray, gelatos, paper crumple, watered down paint, make handmade flowers etc).  Just tell us how water was applied.

A little about Shirley Charlton ...

Shirley Roma Charlton was born in Malawi Central Africa and is now based in Brisbane, Australia. She is an international professional fine artist and her work has sold all over the world. With many art Exhibitions behind her and having judged many art shows, she loves teaching art. Her inspirational watercolours and soft pastels show a love for seascapes while her figure painting show vibrant rich colours with bold strokes.

Proceeds from her work goes back to Malawi to help a village called Manyowe outside Blantyre.  She also teaches art for the unemployed and homeless.

And some inspiration from the first of our team ...

I really loved this painting, so attempted to imitate the colours in the background, as well as the look of the paving. I used lots of wet mediums and have popped a step by step on my blog if anyone is interested in trying to create a similar look!

I just learnt a technique from my friend of using watercolour on scrapbook pages, so it was perfect timing. I painted first on clear acetate and then placed the acetate upside down on my page. The bonus was I could get the paint right before I placed it on my page. I did the top and bottom the same colours as the inspiration painting and placed my photo and embellishments along the centre of my page like the people are on the inspiration painting.

I've used water and spray mists on this.

I started with choosing mist colours that made me think of a cold ,wet, winter day and spraying them in a manner to make it feel cold and gloomy. I added splats with ink and a stamp for puddles  and rain splatting. I also added some leaf stamps for leaves on the ground. A crackle stamp for the pavement and  I used the sequins for rain.

I always use watercolors on my backgrounds and chose to do so on this layout too. This time I used green and yellow. To highlight the water color theme I also used patterned papers with water color patterns.

The starting point for my page was the combination of colours and I also took inspiration from the silhouettes and the wet pavement.    I painted some  watercolour paper first,  using  an ink tense block applied with a wet brush. Coloured texture paste through a stencil created the “path”.  Then the “puddle” was formed by dropping mists from an eye dropper.   Water was rubbed over non permanent ink for the border.

To get the wet/liquid look I used Glimmer Mist, Kaiser Mists and sequins on the background.  I was inspired by the vivid colours and the sense movement in the inspirational piece. I used birds, butterflies and flourishes to portray this sense of movement. I also used a large photo so the subject colour and detail wouldn't get lost. 

And now it is your turn ......

Please upload the DIRECT link to your actual entry with the link tool on the LEFT by 11.55pm on July 31st, 2015.  We'd love to see your new paper, digital, mixed media or off the page entries. Why not try doing a pocket page spread?  Please no back-dated submissions.  

 You may combine our challenge with a sketch and a product/technique challenge (so two additional challenges).  Please include our inspirational picture and challenge details on your blog post as well as provide a link back to us at ARTastic  ... and don't forget to tell us how you were inspired by our challenge.  

You may enter more than once in any month as long as each submission is with a different creation.  International entries are very welcome. 

Please pop back on the 8th for The ARTastic 3T's - Tips, Tricks and Techniques brought to you this month by our delightful team member, Jo Tritton

Our June winners will also be announced at this time so please make sure you call past.


  1. Wow girls ! beautiful layouts
    Mary x

  2. Loving these! I hope our wonderful challenge-ee's get lots of inspiration from them:):) Or is it challenge- ers??? Whichever!!!

  3. best way to start a month... love the inspiration from the artist and the DT