Fearless … still.

In 2014, I chose the word “fearless” as a guideline for my approach to life in general and my art and business more specifically. “How’d that work out for you?” you might ask. Trying to be “fearless” didn’t solve all of life’s problems, of course – and it may well have have caused me to stir a pot or two that might have been better off left alone. But thinking about that word reminded me that “nothing ventured, nothing gained” – and I have indeed found my life enriched by the things I accomplished and the people with whom I connected with in 2014. My business was better that the previous year and I’ve created (and enjoyed creating) more art than ever before. Why mess with a good thing, right? So, this is me – continuing to try to be fearless.

Journal2bThe only resolution I made for 2015 was to take fewer art classes. Then I immediately signed up for Donna Downey’s Inspiration Wednesday series. Using one of the techniques she demonstrated, I decorated the cover of a altered book (which I rebound) art journal. There are tons and tons (I lost count) of layers of gesso and joint compound (for the letters), Golden fluid acrylic paints, and Perfect Pearls (which by the way I purchased two years
ago and found, quite by accident, still unopened !!!), for a slight shimmery metallic effect. It turned out beautifully, if I do say so myself and looks like a very old, grunged up, slightly “steam-punkish” book. Since the art journal was meant to be a gift, I added my friend’s name to it so I wouldn’t be tempted to keep it for myself.

Journal2cI then (quite fearlessly) broke my resolution and signed up to do Life Book again  – the 2015 version (more on that in a later post). However, I’m still working on LB2014 because I joined too late in the year to possibly finish on time.

Fellow designer, good friend and art buddy, Amber, and I got together a couple of weeks ago for an art-cation day. Amber brought her charming and thoroughly adorable 6-year old, Jade, and the three of us had blast making backgrounds with some very unusual tools, inspired by a LB2014 class. Two of my works were the largest format I’ve ever attempted – 18″ x 24″.  Here’s a large picture of one of them (click it to take bit of a closer look), and some smaller images. Take a look – if you can correctly guess what tools we used, I’ll enter you in a drawing to win a set of the digital backgrounds I’m going to make from them and release in a few weeks. Just leave a comment on this post with your guess – comments will close on February 1. One guess per person.


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  1. Su Hall

    No, I didn’t realize this was an old post! LOL I’m like waaay behind in my e-mail! It was still fun guessing!

  2. Su Hall

    Ya’ll had fun, too, didn’t ya? Yay for you all! LOL The backgrounds are to die for, Vicki and company! I’m going along with an ear of corn and a pierogi press. Some of the paint looks acrylic, but, the rest appear to be watercolors, maybe? I dunno! They’re so nice!!
    Thank you for the chance to win them!

    Hi, Amber!!


    • Vicki Robinson

      We did have fun Su! It was a blast!

  3. Sarah R.

    Gorgeous backgrounds! And it was fun to study them – I should do that more often 🙂 I think you used a straw to blow some of the paint around. Thanks for the chance to win!!

    • Vicki Robinson

      Thans, Sarah! Good guess!

  4. Debby

    I think you used an ear of Indian corn.

  5. Danielle Seymour

    Oh man that’s a rough one lol
    CORN! There’s corn in there for sure lol Toothpicks? and credit cards? LOL this is fun, I’ll be thinking about this all day! Looks great Vicki!!!


    • Vicki Robinson

      Thanks, Dani!

  6. Tammy

    I am guessing you used acrylic paints, gesso, credit card, some kind of round lid, and maybe sand paper for all that texture? lol So I tried! 🙂

    I am still loving your work and still want to try it. With my SIL so sick I have had her 13 yr old son quite a bit. It kind put a lot of things on the back burner for a while….but I am LOVING watching your work progress! I just bought the book Beautiful Faces by Jane Davenport and have been having fun trying to teach myself to draw (which is pretty funny in itself)!

  7. RoseC

    I’m seeing truck tracks from a child’s toy and water rings from wet glasses. Guess that comes from being a seventy two year old Mom and Grandma. Looks like the top of my old pine coffee table. Indented tracks from Hot Wheels and white rings.

  8. Mary Darling

    I think you used bubble wrap, glasses and scrunched-up plastic wrap over top of watercolor on your paper

  9. Jacqui Bainbridge

    I think you may have used a cheese grater and a credit card.

  10. Bernadette Tuffs

    potato masher, spatula, rim of an egg cup…?!!! GORgeous work!!! xx

    • Vicki Robinson

      Hey Bernie! Thanks so much!

  11. Renee Berger

    OMG I saw steampunk in the newsletter and didn’t even go further. Just clicked the link. That cover is beyond AWSOME.

    I also think you used kitchen utensils and some rollers wrapped in stuff. Gorgeous work. You’re an inspiration.

    • Vicki Robinson

      Thanks, so much Renee … I’m kinda of addicted to steampunk myself …

  12. Nightshadow

    If these backgrounds were made digitally, then I think you used watercolor brushes and lots of digital stamps, plus layer composite methods.

    If done with Real media, then I think you used watercolor paints, toothbrushes, and a razor blade.

    or…you started with paper that you used some watercolor experiments on, then scanned them in and played with the aforementioned digital stamps and layer composite methods.

    How did I do? 🙂

  13. christylemon

    Actually, I think you used a broom to create the backgrounds. Or maybe a small whisk????

  14. Robin

    I think you used a potato mashe, spatula and other kitchen implements.