Wednesday, April 5, 2017

100 Days Project

I am participating in the 100 Days Project.
Can't tell you how motivating and exciting this is to me!! 

I have decided to create 100 journal pages and/or cards with Brave sayings on them.

The hashtag I am using on Instagram is...

Monday, April 3, 2017

FREE Words and Phrases Printable FOR YOU!

Take a Leap!  -Leslie Ackman

It's MONDAY!! And I have a surprise for YOU!!
Along with my NEW weekly "Heart Notes" newsletter 
I will be sharing a printable each week filled with Words,
quotes and uplifting phrases to use in your Journals, your Art or 
wherever you feel inspired to use them!!

Here is the link to my FIRST Words Printable...

Saturday, April 1, 2017

April's Challenge is Here!

“You are an unfinished work in progress. One of the good things about life's challenges: you get to find out that you're capable of being far more than you ever thought possible.” 
― Karen Salmonsohn

It's April First...such a beautiful month!! Spring is here, flowers are beginning to bloom and gardening is just around the corner. I LovE it!

 If you are new to my blog...WELCOME! My mission here is to Encourage, Uplift and Inspire YOU to be your VERY best! Please stop by my Facebook group...Brave Heart Sisterhood Mixed Media Art...a growing community of women who love to share their Art and Soul with one another. 

You can also sign up for my Weekly Newsletter...Heart Notes.  
Delivered every Thursday to your Inbox, Heart Notes is FULL of inspiration, journaling prompts and quotes to motivate you into living a full and intentional life!
You can find a sample a of what to expect here...

Join us each month for FREE art journaling challenges. Our March Challenge can be found here.

Now on to April's Challenge...

"I AM..."

You can find ALL the "I AM" statements at the top of my blog and in our Files section in Brave Heart Sisterhood Mixed Media Art.

Like all our Challenges you can choose to create cards out  of journal pages, a canvas....whatever you are inspired to do. With last month's challenge I created 31-4x6 index cards...

It was fast and so much FUN creating these!

For our April Challenge I have been inspired to create in my Faith Journal...a simple composition notebook from Wal-Mart that cost less than a dollar...

Here is our first "I AM" statement....

"I AM Persevering"

Along with the "I AM" statement I wrote what I am persevering in and what ONE area I am struggling with (still!). I have decided to make the challenge this month all about my faith and listening to Him.

 But remember...YOU make
it whatever YOU are inspired to!!!

Be sure and post your "I AM" cards, pages, journals in our FB group...we would LOVE to see what you do with them!!!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Organic Scribbles Inspired Art

"Life is a succession of moments.
 To live each one is to succeed."

Corita Kent, Artist

It's Week Two of my series Creating Dina Wakley Inspired Art.
This week I am playing with one of her latest stamp sets...

To be honest I just wasn't too sure how to use these stamps.
I was trying to come up with all sorts of creative ideas...
in the end I just let go and had so much fun! 
I can already tell this will be one of my "go-to" sets.

My first project is a page in my Dylusions journal.

See all those delightful scribbles
 on the lower left side of my page?

Another journal page...this time in
 Dina's new Mixed-Media Journal.

This time around I tried out the kraft paper...nice and sturdy so you can add so many layers.
On this page I chose to just 
and more scribbles. Other Dina stamps 
used can be found here and here and here.

Of course I had to create a couple of tags...they are always my favorite!!
Tags are a great way to "warm-up" when I am just not sure what I want to do.

The scribbles make this tag more visually interesting. LOVE it!!
And look how well Dina's Silhouettes go with it.
That's a Quote Chip by Tim Holtz in the center.

My second tags using Scribbles along with a Paper Doll from Tim Holtz.

And lastly I created a 6x6 canvas...

Dina's Stars and Phrases look perfect with one of my Angel Girls.
The pink tape with stripes is her Media Tape I painted myself...

And using one of her Scribble stamps I stamped around the edges using her Turquoise paint.

I invite you to watch my Organic Scribbles video on YouTube...
be sure and watch in full screen to see everything perfectly.

Thank you for stopping today!!

Friday, March 10, 2017

Abstract Blooms Inspired Art

“We have to continually be jumping 
off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.” 

Ever since I began creating nearly 10 years ago my whole world has expanded. From my Art friends on Facebook to women whom I've met face to face at Art Retreats...I feel so BLESSED to be a part of the Creative Community! 

I have several Artists whom have inspired me through the years...Kelly Rae Roberts, Melody Ross and Dina Wakley. Each one of these women (mostly without them knowing) have encouraged me to keep on making messes and bare my Soul through my Art.

The next six weeks I will be sharing FIVE projects each week using one of my favorite Artists products...Dina Wakley's latest Stamp Sets from Creativation. Along with her stamps I will be using her paints, stencils and her latest Mixed-Media Journal. It is AMAZING!!!

This week's Set is called "Abstract Blooms" 

This page was made in her journal on the heavy duty mixed-media paper. It also features several of her older stamps along with BLOOM from "Abstract Blooms". 

The lime green washi tape is one I created 

This set is so versatile...
The circles are from the Bloom set just with the leaves cut off.

This sweet 6x6 canvas reminds me to keep taking chances!!

I LOVE to create tags...Ranger's #8 tags are the PERFECT size...

If you look on the left side of the tag you will see Dina's Media Tape and more Blooms stamps!! Those girls are the new Paper Dolls from Tim Holtz!!

As soon as I saw this sweet little Bloom 
I knew it belonged on a 4x4 canvas.

These gorgeous colors are from Dina's Paints...they are SO SMOOTH!!!

 This will be going to a friend!!

And finally today another tag...
Here I used lots of Dylusion Sprays, Dina's Fractured Circles Stencil and more Blooms inspiration!!


Watch how I created all of these projects in my Weekly YouTube Video Series..."Creating Dina Inspired Art"...

Thank you for stopping by!!

Join my Facebook Community

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Creating a Small Canvas

Here is my latest YouTube video.

I hope you enjoy.

You are welcome to join our community on Facebook.

Have a GREAT day!!


Monday, March 6, 2017

Creating Dina Inspired Art

“Everyone has been made
 for some particular work,
 and the desire for that work 
has been put in every heart.” 
— Rumi

The moment I found mixed-media art is the moment I KNEW I found my Calling. I have always felt deep in my Heart my Truthteller gently nudging me to encourage other women.

To inspire them to be everything they can be. 

To uplift them with motivating stories, quotes and Art as a pathway to healing and loving themselves again.

The minute I saw Dina Wakley's Art I KNEW that not only was I an Artist...but it was okay to TRULY be 100% ME.
I could be as messy...
as colorful...
as unstructured as I wanted to me.

I didn't have to know how to draw or what color to use and where.
I could just put paint on paper and CREATE.

To say I have a bit of an obsession with Dina's work and products is perhaps a bit of an understatement.
With each new product launch I am giddy and can't wait to start playing. This attitude along with her inspirational products is what moved me to start my next Blog and Video Series...

 "Creating Dina Inspired Art by Leslie Ackman"

Each week beginning Thursday,  March 9th I will be highlighting one of her stamp sets along with her new journal, Making Marks tools, paints, washi tape and Dina's Media Boards. 
We will begin with Dina's Abstract Blooms stamp set...

Purchase them here

Here is a sneak peak of what you can expect...

For this particular post 

Using Dina's paints in Blushing, Turquoise and Fuchsia I scrape paint on each tag...

Here is what they look like after adding stencils and ink...

Her Fractured Circles stencil is my new FAVORITE!!

For added texture using a palette knife I smeared Stucco Paint by Martha Stewart through one of Dina's stencils.

I just LOVE how it looks!!

Next I decide what stamps I will use on what tag. 
For the Abstract Blooms stamp set I decide on the tag I created without using stencils...

Instead I made my own Marks
with a bit of white paint and small tipped paintbrush.
I stamped the flower onto old book paper with Stazon Ink 
then cut out and glued onto tag.
I stamped the word BLOOM along the left side of tag, while stamping another word from her set GROW onto pink painted paper then cut out and adhered to tag. The final touch were the two ribbons at the top.

Another new stamp set by Dina is this one...

Words in Faces

This is the first of her scribbly faces series I have bought and am loving them!!!

First I stamped onto the back of the packaging...

...and cut out.

I chose to use Stay Strong...

Once glued on tag I knew it wasn't finished...

So I dripped blue ink from the top using my spray bottle (a tip I learned from Dina!),
painted my girl with Neocolor crayons,
and added three words from Tim Holtz.

Still it needed something else so I finished her with a heart and stamped the words HOLD ON from Dina's set and added a small pink butterfly on top of the tag. I love it!

The third stamp from Dina I used is Homage to Frida.

I absolutely ADORE these stamps!!!!!

Using my tag with texture paste on it I added one of the Frida stamps I had stamped on the packaging again and cut out...

She needed color, too so I using my Neocolors and water again I did just that. Aren't those orange flowers so pretty in her hair?!

I finished by adding black to my stencils with a black Fude Ball pen and words from Dina's set...paint your truth spill your story. LOVE that!!!! I can see myself using that one a lot!

My last tag for today is probably my favorite...I adore the messiness of it.All the drips and drops and smudges.

The Fractured Circles was used along with Dina's Turquoise and Fuchsia paints.

The stamp is from Abstract Blooms. Instead of ink I used more of Dina's Turquoise.
The cute girls are from Tim Holtz's NEW paper dolls! I am in love with these!!!

I hope you have enjoyed this sneak peek of what's to come and JOIN ME Thursday for MORE Dina inspired art and a video!!!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Mixed-Media Affirmations

“In life, finding a voice is speaking and living the truth. Each of you is an original. Each of you has a distinctive voice. When you find it, your story will be told. You will be heard.” 

We ALL need reassurance in life.
We need love and acceptance.
And we need those things not from others...
but from OURSELVES.

Welcome to "Mixed Media Affirmations".
I am so Happy YOU are here!!

So what's an Affirmation??

According to

something that is affirmed;
 a statement or proposition that is declared to be true.

I invite you to join me for the next
 31 Days as we take time to create daily 
and declare to ourselves that WE matter.
That WE are worth every 
effort we put into 
bettering ourselves.

This class is not about creating a masterpiece...
It's more about creating YOU.
Giving you a positive mindset 
to last well into the Summer.
It's about taking 10 to 15 minutes a day
 to create and meditate 
on that day's Affirmation.

All you need for this Challenge is...

*31 index cards
*acrylic paint or water colors or crayons

**If you want to add more please feel free to do so.
-washi tape

Are you ready??

Go here to find ALL 31 Affirmations.
Just highlight the page, Copy and then Paste into a Word or MAC document.

I would LOVE for you to share your cards with us!! If you do please use this hashtag...

If you any questions please leave a comment here or in our FB group...

Monday, February 27, 2017

It'sOne of Those Days

Most days I am UP!
I feel good.

Today is not one of those days.

I am feeling overwhelmed.
Not good enough.

I started my day in Scriptures.
Was inspired by

Days like this when I doubt my own abilities I know it's just me...
needing a break.
Time to think.
To be.

I know I am good enough.
Am loved.

I know I am creative.

But somedays I forget.

I am no quitter.
I am a Lover of Life.
I set goals for myself.
I Dream Dreams.

Life is so Beautiful.
Somedays I just need reminded.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Fitness Fridays and Art

“If you have a dream, don’t just sit there. 
Gather courage to believe 
that you can succeed and 
leave no stone unturned
 to make it a reality.” 
― Roopleen

Checking in this week to hold myself accountable and record my year long journey to Health.
Since my last Fitness Fridays post I have gained weight. 
Seriously, at first I was frustrated and kept saying to myself...
"But I am working so hard at eating right!!"

Now I AM a healthy eater...lots of fruit and veggies, lean meats and water.
With that diet you would think I would be losing and not gaining, right??

If I am HONEST with myself...
while I AM eating all those healthy things I am also eating chips, a few sweet treats
and too big of portions.

The one GOOD thing I AM doing for my health is walking.
I wear by FitBit daily and participate in step challenges with my friends.
It's really fun and motivating!

Today I decided I needed an actual GOAL.
So I have decided I want to lose 10 pounds by the end of April.
It's when I go to Sister Camp.

Very do-able as long as I FOCUS on what I put in my body.

Baby steps lead to BIG results!!

Now on to the ART part...

I hope you can join me in my FB group for my next inspiring Challenge...

"Mixed-Media Affirmations" starts Wednesday, March 1st.
We will be creating 31 cards with 31 Affirmations on each one to inspire, encourage and uplift us.

All you need are...

31 index cards or tags
your favorite colors of acrylic paint
a pen

**of course you can add as many embellishments as you want!!
whatever you fancy!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Friday, February 17, 2017

Welcome to My Studio

“Where's your church?"

"We're standing in it."

"But this is a bookstore and it's a Friday."
"Yes, but you might also choose 
to see it as a cathedral of the human spirit-
a storehouse consecrated to the full spectrum 
of human experience. 
Just about every idea we've ever had 
is in here somewhere.
A place containing great thinking 
is a sacred space.” 

***There are over 50 photos in this post!!

I am so happy today!! I get to show YOU by Studio!!
Or as I love to call it....
My Sacred Space.

In the past 25 years I have lived in four homes. I am blessed to have had a space of my own in each of them.
In our home we live in now I have moved my studio five times!!
And THIS time it's a keeper!!!

Before I show you the cleaned up version...I want to share a few BEFORE photos....

I initially moved my studio to this room last year and LOVED it. 
However, there were still remnants of my daughter's room in here so 
I wasn't able to fully spread everything out the way I had envisioned it. The above photo was taken just over a month ago after my girl moved into her own apartment.

Even though there was nothing but CHAOS for a few days it gave me time to go through my things.

I got rid of a whole big box of stuff!! I shared the love with a friend of mine here in Maryville:)

I must say it was VERY daunting going through all this STUFF. Plus I was trying to figure out just how I wanted my studio to be set up.

The one thing I did know was I wanted a bigger art table in front of the window...that's where I do most of my computer stuff and my creating. I LOVE the SUN!!!

Notice I had a helper that day..Mister Oreo:)

This was the space that was filled with a VERY large armoir of my daughter's. Once that was out of the room I could truly make this all MINE!!

Now for the AFTER Photos...


Walking into my studio
I decided to break up the room into three sections...

1. A place for my stamps, vintage images, hand-painted papers and other paper-type things.

2. A place for everything MESSY! My paints, glue, modeling paste, paintbrushes, paint, glitter, etc.

3. A place where I created and used my computer.

Now let's take a closer look at each part!!

When you walk into my studio this is what you see to your left...

My Messy table along with my printer on the far left.

To the right is my stamp and paper table...

I use stamps all the time...they are my FAVORITE product!!!
(as you can see)

I have found various ways to store my stamps. My acrylic stamps are in that green basket on the left...some of my block stamps are in the 3-tiered holder on the right...

I got this at a home party years ago. I LOVE it!

Another way I store my wooden block stamps is with this
bathroom holder I found at a junk shop.

It costs me a whole dollar!!

Another one of my favorite storage pieces is this three shelf piece from the 70's. It cost a dollar at a yard sale.

I know it must look messy to you...

But to me I know EXACTLY what's in it! On the bottom I have all my pencils and erasers plus a basket of foam stamps. The middle holds my hand-painted papers and few calendar stickers. On the top is a clear-plastic box full of 3-D embellishments along with patterned paper strips I like to use in my work.

Throughout my studio I have sweet little gifts my friends have sent me through the years...

This darling tag was given to me by my Brave Girl Sister Summer.

Also on that table are more foam stamps, embellishments and another friend's art work...this one is from Jodene Shaw in from White Owl Wings Mixed-Media.

This is another treasure I found at a yard sale a few summers ago...

It's the PERFECT spot for all my Vintage Girls!!!

Ok let's head over to my Messy table now...

I found this three-tiered piece at Hobby Lobby for $3.00!!!

Not all my paints fit so I have added a basket...

I also keep paper towels in my's a must have for me and all the messes I make!!!

My stencils are in basket on the left and my long/bigger paintbrushes are on the right.

The container my brushes are in is from Hobby Lobby. It was supposed to be used for silverware but when I saw it I just KNEW it was the perfect brush holder. The nice thing is there is a handle on it so I can easily move it to where I am. 

All my smaller brushes fit nicely in a vase I purchased at a yard sale for a quarter.

It just makes me happy!!

Other things on my table include foam brushes (there on the top left), spray inks (in that striped photo box on the bottom left, my glue, modeling paste, gel medium, spray bottle and my paint trays.

Oh, by the can't see it but where the foam brushes are on top and the spray inks on the bottom...That is one of those extra shelving racks you can buy at Wal-Mart. Super cheap and works GREAT in your studio for adding extra space to your table!!!

Let's get to my main table...where I work on my computer and create!

This is my beloved MAC. My hubby bought for me two years ago and I will NEVER have a PC again!

As you can see I have several things surrounding my computer...

I have my stamp that says...
"You had the power all along, my Dear..."

And a photograph my Brave Girl Sister Patti just sent me...a sweet reminder!!

This is a saying from Melody Ross and Brave Girl's Club...

The bright notebook with the girl on it is from my dear friend Sandy...the bird is new and has my one of my favorite Bible verses on it...
"To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose under heaven."

The cream colored bowl has Brave Sayings in it for my Brave Heart Cards and journals.

The three tiered jewelry keeper I found at Hobby Lobby for less than $5 on clearance. It holds my smaller Washi tapes, two birds my girl gave me along with cut-out quotes and my reader glasses. My favorite scissors usually sit here, too.

The journal you see is my "I AM" journal. 

To the left of my MAC is where I create...

My Avon Heart mug is a MUST in my studio!! Hearts are my thing after all!! My Mama gave me this cup for Valentine's Day back in the 1980's. It's my water brush cup now:)
The silver two-tiered tray is from a yard has my Zazz glues, gelato's and oil pastels on it.

The white drawers were on clearance from Michael's. Perfect Place for my Ott Light to sit as well as my tiny alphabet stamps, black ink pads and other things.

The white Heart vase on top is from Minnie Lane in Maryville...a few of my go-to gelato's are in there.

On the same table I have a place for all my alphabet stencils, glue sticks and small photos of me I use in my journals.

I use freezer paper on my desk so when I create I can be as messy as I want!!

I just love my view, too!! Our sweet little neighborhood! My husband was leaving to go hunting when I snapped this!

Let's see what else is in my space...
This bookshelf sits on the opposite wall of my creating desk. It's where I keep journals, books I use for my blog and other endeavors, a few stamps and my 12x12 patterned scrapbook paper. 

On top of the bookcase are old photographs, some finished projects I want to keep safe and see that Beautiful pink Dream Catcher?? My girl Sherry Canino from our group sent me that last Christmas!

The little table to the right is for larger projects I am working on. At the moment is a canvas along with stickers I intend on using in a photo collage for my daughter.

This is a small bookcase right as you walk into my studio...

It houses all my How-To Painting type books, a few small treasures I use in my work and that sunflower basket is full of flowers.

My most cherished piece in my studio is this corner shelf from my childhood. I have had this shelf since I was born. My Mom had it in my bedroom where all my special things were kept safe.

It's now used in my space for books, albums and other things. 
My Brave Girl Camp apron and bag are also there. 

You may have noticed this post-it notes...

Years ago I took a class from Melody Ross and she encouraged us to write notes to ourselves.

Charlie Brown is a childhood favorite of mine!!

This little guy was all by his lonesome at a yard sale last summer for $1.00. 
I love him!

I wish I could take credit for this mixed-media piece but I can't.
Isn't it GORGEOUS??!!!

I bought this at a local craft show a few years back. It still inspires me!!!

Here's my bulletin board. I have had this thing for 15 years! It's not very full right now as I just got it hung. I plan on using it for Blog and Project Ideas.

This hangs beside my bulletin board...
It was given to me by Emma. I ADORE it so much!!

Some of my favorite things are fave Emoji, my Brave Girl Medal from Camp, An Anasazi Quote, a note from my daughter and more.

Throughout my studio is my Art...

This is my favorite shelf and sits to the right of my chair.
That photo is ME when I was 4 years old.
Beside me is a bird...My Truthteller reminding me of my little girl self. You also see a crown from sweet Sandy, a koala and some sand from Sandy (she lives in Australia!!). The suitcase was my Barbie case when I was a little girl. I am pretty sure before that it was my Mama's!

The Art Materials book is from Minnie Lane and I LOVE it!! It's so retro yet so full of FANTASTIC art terms that I need today!!!

That cutie Ziggy was my Dad's (he has been gone 21 years now). The flowers are from my cousin Lora.

Remember this space??

It looks like this now!!

 Books I am reading, boxes with Washi Tape, ink pads and die-cuts.
Those photo boxes on top are full of photos.

Just a few more things...

This is my NEW cart I bought last week. LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!
The top holds all my planner supplies, the middle my Bible Journaling stuff and the bottom has new stamps I want to work with and all my tags.

Just a few more things before I go...these are my two babies!!
I have more but these two are almost ALWAYS
in my studio with me!!
Gizmo is on the left and Bo is on the right.

They bring me JOY!!

I sure hope you have enjoyed seeing my studio and been inspired to create your very own sacred space!!

For more art inspiration join my FB group Mind.Body.Soul Art Journaling

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