Art in Progress

//Art in Progress

Art In Progress: Choose Happiness

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

This piece was a looonnnng time coming because I had this background in my closet for at least a year before I put a girl on it.  I couldn’t decide if I wanted to keep it as is or if I wanted to layer on top of it.  I fell in love with the colors as I was creating it and I just never wanted to cover it up, until recently.  I firmly believe that works evolve over time to what they’re meant to be!  This one needed a little more resting time before I was ready to change it.

Here was the background I started with, it was just a fun experiment of colors and boldness:

Work in Progress: Choose Happiness

It was a fun colorful piece that I loved to look at so you can understand my hesitance in changing it (or messing it up!)  But one of the things I’ve learned about growing as an artist is not to get too attached to anything I create.  If I hold too tightly to particular pieces or elements of my work, it stops me from expanding my skills and growing.  And actually that’s pretty good advice for me to follow in my life too!  I always think I’m just painting, but being creative always teaches me about life as well.

Anyway, since I loved the colors I used so much, I knew the sentiment “Choose Happiness” would go perfectly with this background.  I started the transformation by putting a girl on top and I gave her a dress pattern to compliment the colors.  I like to name each of my girls too, so she’s appropriately named: Joy.

choose happiness

Then I stamped the sentiment in, as well as added some more details.  The little pieces are my favorite–my art teacher always tells me not to get too lost in the minutiae, but I feel like the details are part of what make my paintings special to me.  I love looking up close and seeing what is hidden, in both my work and other people’s creations.

choose happiness

And here’s the final image below.  I feel like it was worth it to wait for this to emerge!  I’m so happy with how she came out–vibrant but simple.  I hope you enjoy her as much as I do!

Choose happiness

Buy Choose Happiness (Joy) on Etsy Here

Love, Steph

 

Art In Progress: Choose Happiness2019-01-14T20:25:43-04:00

Acrylic Painting Demonstration #1

I made my first acrylic painting demonstration and it was so much fun! Short and sweet, click through to check it out.

I LOVE watching painting demos online.  Just ordinary everyday artists in the groove, making it happen–it’s fun to watch because  I love seeing new techniques, hearing their commentary and listening to how they end up making the choices they make.  Kind of like life, the journey is the best part.  I feel like no matter how long I’ve painted or what I’ve learned, there’s always more to know and painting demos help me get there!

Anyway, so after watching a looooot of demos, I decided to try to make one myself.  And you know what?  It was so much fun.  You know what else? I only painted for 10 minutes, took one take of the video and called it a day. So the best part of all of this is that it didn’t take forever to do.  YOU GUYS IT WAS FAST AND EASY!  And you can do it too!

Ok, so you can take a peek at the video below.  I’m posting it in my FB group too, so if you want to give me some feedback, hop on over there and join us in the conversation.  Do you want to see more of these?  Tell me.

Love, Steph

PS: Come join my Facebook Group for Creatives HERE.  We can’t wait to meet you!

Acrylic Painting Demonstration #12018-03-29T20:23:05-04:00

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: Let Joy Be Your Guide

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

When I first started working on this one, I only had a few minutes to put some paint on paper, so I was pretty hasty in my technique.  I threw some colors down and moved it around and needless to say, my lack of focus (and time) showed up in what I created. I ended up kind of hating it and because of that, this page stayed quiet for at least a month, maybe more. *Ugh*  I just couldn’t figure out how to attack it again because it was so choppy looking to me and I didn’t love the color scheme.  But in the end, this piece was a good lesson in not giving up–especially when I’m just at the beginning of something.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

So during the next session, I went allllll in and added a different color palette. I left some of the original colors in the background, but I wanted to move this piece in a different direction than what I started with, so I added some markings and a little piece of collage.  I’m not sure why I picked that piece in the bottom corner, but I saw it, liked it and then just slapped it on. I try not to think too hard when I’m creating and just go with the flow of inspiration. Eventually those little whispers make sense.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Next I wanted to create a spot for my girl.  At this point of creating, I usually don’t know what the sentiment will be or what she will look like, I just put the bare bones down to create space for the next layer of creativity.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

So I added the features, collaged in her dress and added some accents to her hair.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Then all of a sudden the collage piece in the corner made sense when I saw a little bird in my collection of collage papers.  I love little birds.  I even have a whole Pinterest board dedicated to bird art!  So yes, the bird made sense to nest there in the corner.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

And then the sentiment came to me.  It had a lot to do with the bird bringing me joy 🙂

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

And then here’s the finished piece.

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

This is in my sketchbook which I’m getting used to working in and slowly starting to LOVE. It’s a lot more portable and forgiving.  No worries about screwing up an entire canvas which is great because more experimenting = more learning.  And I’m totally into that!

I hope you enjoyed this view into my process + If you do nothing else today…just let joy be your guide 🙂

Some Supplies I used:

Love, Steph

 

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: Let Joy Be Your Guide2018-03-29T20:23:05-04:00

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: Be True To You

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

In an effort to get back to creating consistently, I went out and made an on the go studio kit for myself.  You can see what it includes in this post I wrote about creativity.  I wanted to take the pressure off of needing to set my studio back up after having a baby in order to get back to abstract painting.  I realized I can be creative in so many ways on the go (hello simple sketches) and I liked the idea of smaller versions of my favorite supplies to bring the ease back to my process.

I got these adorable paints from Target.  They’re small and fun and the colors!  *swoon*

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.I wanted to change what I painted on and try a new format–using a pad of heavy duty mixed media paper is new to me because I usually use a canvas to create.  You know what? I found working on the paper to be amazingly freeing!  I wasn’t so worried about ‘messing things up’ like I would feel sometimes in front of a fresh started canvas.

I began this piece below by using water soluble wax pastels and treating them like watercolors.  Have you used them before?  They’re definitely worth checking out.  I colored with them on the page, then smudged with a wet brush and sometimes my fingers and it gave a nice watercolor background effect.

20160716_092712

I spread some of the paint colors around the edges of the paper and added in collage and pen details.   I had fun with the doodles, I wasn’t thinking too much but just trying to enjoy the process–that is the way abstract painting is meant to feel.  I saw that a girl was emerging so I brought her to life by painting her face and neck.

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Some close up details of the doodles…

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

I found myself getting a little stuck on what to do next so I started adding details to the girl–her hair came first.  And then I added the outline for her eyes, but I messed up on the left eye!  Oh well.  I was using a pitt pen, so I quickly wiped it with a baby wipe and just tried again.  The paint for the color of the eyes eventually covered it up.

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

After adding some more details and the sentiment, I feel like it was finished. This was so much fun to create on paper, I can’t wait to do the next one!

I spread some of the paint colors around the edges of the paper and added in pen details.   I had fun with the doodles, I wasn't thinking too much but just trying to enjoy the process.

Love, Steph

 

Abstract Painting Art In Progress: Be True To You2018-03-29T20:23:06-04:00

Art In Progress: You Are So Loveable

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

I started this piece in class with a very loose background–I love that blue!  It’s one of my favorite colors.  And I love the complimentary accent of the hot pink, I always seem to find a way to put that color in somewhere 🙂

Ever wonder how a painting is made? Come over and check out my series Art In Progress to see how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, You Are So Loveable, click through for a peek. Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

 

I left the background a little more open and airy than I normally do, I experimented with it to see if I liked leaving a little more resting space for the eyes.  The next step was adding the girl + I collaged in a piece for her dress.

You are so loveable 2

In the spirit of trying new things, I gave her short hair.  She reminded me of my niece who used to sport a cute pixie cut and it just felt right.  A lot of my inspiration for these girls came from my nieces, so I just followed my gut on this one.  Don’t you just love it?

You are so loveable 3

I added in the sentiment and some more accents in her hair, on her dress and collar. (sorry for the blurry phone picture!)

You are so loveable 4

After some more collage and accents, she started to feel finished to me–I love how she came out!

Ever wonder how a painting is made? Come over and check out my Art In Progress and see how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

Prints available here.

Remember–we are all so loveable in our own unique ways.

Love, Steph

Art In Progress: You Are So Loveable2018-03-29T20:23:07-04:00

Art In Progress: Dream Big, Little One

Art In Progress: See how I create Inspirational art for kids + the kid in you. To learn about art technique + my motivation for creating this piece, click through for a peek. See how paintings evolve from start to finish! Original artwork by Stephanie Martel.

No dreamer is ever too small; no dream is ever too big. -anonymous

I started this piece in class one night and it came out quite quick.  I wanted to try a different color palate–one that involved a few cooler colors and no pinks 🙂

Here are the first couple of layers:

dream big art in progress painting

The background colors + style reminded me of trees so I cut out a few chubby birdies to add to the piece.

dream big painting art in progress technique

Here they are up close + with more layers for the wings.  One is a little bigger so I made her the mamma.

dream big painting art in progress technique
dream big painting art in progress technique
Next, I added some embellishments around the edges of the painting.  I wanted a little more interest in the background, so I added purple and some collage pieces.  The birds got an outline and some sweet stick legs–Don’t you just love the gentleness of them?

dream big painting art in progress technique

Then lastly, I added in the sentiment: Dream Big, Little One.  I love how simple yet strong that message is.

dream big painting art in progress technique

You can buy the print here in my shop.

Remember to dream big, friend!

Signature

 

 

 

Art In Progress: Dream Big, Little One2018-03-29T20:23:08-04:00
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