Stamps, stencils & collage papers. Oh my!

We had a lot of fun in the studio on August 3rd and 4th in the Creating Stamps, Stencils and Collage Papers workshop. It was a small group, but creativity filled the air!

Summer time is quite busy for most people, so I will be offering this workshop again in the fall by popular demand. Keep an eye on for the dates and details.

Congratulations to Katharine, Spike and Janice - you created beautiful work!

An intimate group of three :)
Katharine chooses an image to carve in Softoleum
Carving a stamp out of craft foam mounted on Coroplast
A couple of Katharine's collage papers
Another of Katharine's collage papers
Spike carves a stamp out of Softoleum
Making collage papers with paint and hand-cut stamps
One of Spike's collage papers
Another of Spike's collage papers
Janice works on her collage paper
Simplifying a photo to turn into a stamp
One of Janice's collage papers
Another of Janice's collage papers
Beautiful hand, Spike!

Thank you to all the Fabulous Participants who have been so lovely to create with and I look forward to seeing you here in the studio again! I am SO enjoying teaching these Fabulous Workshops :)

Three more studio workshops are now open for registration:


Collage Creativity.

It was another wonderful day in the studio yesterday as four keen, creative people gathered to take part in the Creating Mixed Media Collage workshop.

We worked on 18" x 14" gallery canvases, beginning by laying down a layer of collage elements to create a background.

Next? A layer of paint, blending and scrubbing with brushes... dark and light areas for contrast.

I am constantly amazed and excited to see how every person expresses themselves in such different ways. Everyone created a unique piece while using the same techniques.





 It was a day full of play, creative energy and exploration. Well done, everyone!


The next Fabulous Workshop happens on Aug 3 & 4 - Creating Stamps, Stencils & Collage Papers.
Do you love painted and patterned collage papers? Do you want to create original papers with your own hand-cut stamps, stencils and everyday objects? Join mixed me for this two day workshop - absolutely no experience required!

You will: transfer patterns onto softoleum; hand cut your own stamps; hand cut stencils from plastic stencil blanks; explore the use of everyday objects for pattern-making; use your newly made stamps and stencils to print fabulous collage papers with acrylic paint; discover imagery resources; play with brayer printing techniques.

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Beautiful Art Indeed.

The Creating Mixed Media Layers workshop here at the studio yesterday was fantastic! Everyone was on fire and they made beautiful art.

The workshop started at 10 am, with information and demonstrations on acrylic paints and mediums. Lots to take in and lots of great questions! Before lunch, everyone went to work on laying down some collage elements from the provided ephemera and their own stash. A layer of gel medium was also laid down for texture. Then it was time for lunch to give the paintings some drying time and all of us a chance to get to know each other better.

After lunch there were more demonstrations. Everyone chose their paint palette and got down to some serious paint "scrubbing". It was a lovely sound as they blended their paint over the canvas, obscuring some of their collage elements and leaving some more visible. The layering continued throughout the afternoon, with more collage, paint, stamps and stencils.

The most challenging part of painting is finding a way to "bring it all together" - I like to think of it as alchemy :) Everyone took a step back to look at their piece from a different perspective. Areas were made stronger or pushed back and glazes were applied to unify the overall look. The results were wonderful.

I am always inspired by the thoughtful way everyone interacts with each other and their enthusiasm to learn, explore and share ideas. Thank you Lin, Judy, Christine, Geneviève, Marion, Beryl, Joyce and Heather for such an exhilarating day. You made beautiful art!







So now you have some insight into what goes on in a Holly Dean workshop. There are still some spots left for "Creating Mixed Media Paintings", July 6 & 7. We will be creating two paintings, learning even more about acrylic paints and mediums, preparing a painting surface with gesso and getting more deeply into texture. I hope you can join us :)

See the Mixed Media Paintings video here.
Sign up for Mixed Media Paintings workshop here.

As always, there will be demonstrations, one-on-one guidance, sheets of very cool collage ephemera to use and keep AND full-colour, multi-page handouts crammed with information and pictures!

Creating Layers. Back-to-Back.

Well, the Five Fabulous Workshops here at my Merrickville Studio are over for now. Look for them again in 2013 along with some new offerings that I'm working on. I have enjoyed this round of workshops so much and feel so thankful to work (play really) with so many creative spirits! Sharing knowledge, techniques, experience and my studio space has brought me such pleasure and, as always, everyone has given so much back.

Here are some wonderful works of art from the two groups in the back-to-back Creating Layers workshops on November 24th and 25th. I am always blown away by how different everyone's pieces are. We truly possess unique creative souls :)

Thank you to all the Fabulous Workshop Participants!!!

If you want to keep up with workshop updates and other artsy news from my Studio, sign up for my art emails below :)

If you have ideas for workshops you would like me to teach, please send me an email here.

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Creating Texture and Age.

Creativity was in the air once again on Saturday, November 17th here in the Studio. This time the workshop was "Creating Texture and Age". We used acrylic mediums, raised wallpaper (Anaglypta), stencils, found objects, cardboard, fabrics... even beads. Much experimenting and discovering ensued as we applied paint and aging solutions to create wonderful patinas. The results were delightful!



Next up is "Creating Layers" - one group on Saturday, November 24th and another group on Sunday, November 25th. That will be last of the Five Fabulous Workshops for this season. I don't know what I will do with myself after they are over ;)

I really do enjoy the wonderful creative energy that fills my studio when I teach and I look forward to offering more workshops in 2013!
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Creating Collage.

A big thank you to everyone who was part of the Creating Collage workshop on Saturday, November 3rd. What a wonderful group!

I really enjoy the energy and sharing atmosphere that happens when a small handful of creative souls come together. Everyone learns, plays, and draws inspiration from each other.

I am always amazed at how uniquely personal each artist's collage is. These pieces are fabulous. Well done, everybody!

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Binding Art to Books.

The Studio was filled with creative energy on October 13 & 14 when five fabulous workshop participants came together for the Creating Muse Journals Workshop. Saturday was spent making small pieces of art on canvas boards with acrylic paint and mediums, collage, stamps and all sorts of delightful embellishments.

On Sunday, holes were drilled to transform the art into book covers. Text blocks and spine wraps were folded and punched and everything was sewn together with a Coptic stitch to create wonderfully personal books, infused with art and creativity.

The resulting Muse Journals were spectacular! It was a fantastic group and we all enjoyed ourselves :)

Next up: Creating Collage Workshop on Saturday, November 3. There are still 2 spots if you are interested in joining us!

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It's Back. Creating Muse Journals.

In fact, all of the FIVE FABULOUS WORKSHOPS are back. Starting with Creating Muse Journals on Saturday and Sunday, October 13 & 14, 2012 at my studio here in Merrickville.

Learn techniques and develop your artist's eye to enhance your own work. For the artistically experienced or the curious beginner. There are only 3 spots left, so sign up quickly :)

Make a rare book of your own where you can spill your thoughts & ideas, hopes & fears, dreams & desires. Write, sketch, doodle & paint...

Mixed media art on canvas panels become front & back covers. Each signature is wrapped with decorative paper. A sturdy Coptic binding allows the journal to lie flat when open. 192 pages, 75 lb. white, acid free paper

Create small mixed media paintings on canvas board; drill holes for sewing & adhere decorated papers to inside covers
Cut & fold signatures, punch for sewing; cut decorative spine papers

Sew your book with waxed linen thread using the Coptic binding technique


Creating Layers Workshop

Five determined people made their way through extreme snowy conditions to my studio in Merrickville for the CREATING LAYERS workshop on Saturday, February 25th. I commend you all on your bravery and excellent driving skills!

Tools for building layers.

The studio was filled with a wonderful energy as we explored various techniques for building layers with acrylic paints, stencils, masks & collage. Brayers, old credit cards and brushes were used to apply transparent, opaque, interference and iridescent paints.

Success! Colourful, layered pieces full of depth & mystery.

I particularly love the "AHA!" moments and the sharing of so many ideas that happen during a workshop.

Thank you to five fabulous participants!!!

For more coverage of this workshop and the previous two - Creating Collage & Creating Text in Your Art - see Véronique's wonderful blog :)

Next up - "Creating Texture & Age" workshop here at the studio on March 10th!
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