“Aspens”

aspens-1 #lovefallart#LoveFallArt

Trying to see if that hashtag will work with a simple blog post! I’m not sure if it’s just a select group of artists doing the Love Fall Art hashtag or if anyone can join in, but there ya go.

YES!

I have for you another official art journal layout. Yippee!

I actually started on this layout at the beginning of the week, laying down bits of color in the evenings when I had time between work and other commitments.

This layout is inspired by a trip I took up to Kenosha Pass with a friend last Sunday to see the aspens changing. Kenosha Pass is a gorgeous spot right off of Highway 285 about an hour’s drive south-west of Denver. It’s perfect because the entire landscape is filled with aspen trees. If you live in the Denver area or are visiting during the fall months, I highly recommend swinging by there. The aspens are typically at a peak in their changes by the third weekend of September.

Kenosha PassKenosha Pass is also along the Colorado Trail – a hiking trail that leads all the way across the Colorado Rockies from the western slope down to Denver.

IMG_9661When my friend and I got up there, we hopped out and took a few pictures of the hillside, then went for a brief stroll back on the Colorado Trail to get ourselves completely surrounded by aspens. It was a gorgeous day, too. Not a cloud in the sky, the temperature was mild, and the sky was just an amazing blue that I really think only happens during autumn months.

IMG_9663Naturally I wanted to do a representation of that trip in my art journal so this is what I came up with.

I first put down a heavy layer of miscellaneous blue acrylic paints by Artists Loft and Daler Rowney FW Pearlescent liquid acrylic. I dried that quickly with my heat tool then tore some strips of paper out of an old Auto CAD textbook in the shapes of a trunk and branches. I thought the black and white text would make for a fun mock bark to match the gorgeous black and white colors you see on aspens.

I glued the first “tree” down with my Golden Soft Gel Matte, dried it, then painted over the paper a bit with white and black acrylics to add shading and light sources, as well as finer twigs and branches that the torn paper wouldn’t allow me to achieve. I then dried that application and started dotting on the leaves in oranges, browns and yellows. This leaf-dotting process was the most time-consuming, as it consists of hundreds of little dots all over the painting in the finished process. I dried between different colors, as well, to make sure they didn’t mix too much.

aspens-5When I had the first tree finished with most of its leaves painted, I added a second tree using the same steps – tearing out strips of paper from the textbook and adhering them to the layout, painting shadows and highlights on and additional branches and twigs, then dotting more leaves onto the layout.

I would have probably added more leaves to finish up the layout more, but after several days of this, I was getting tired and wanted to move on.

The layout needed something more, as the two trees on the blue background weren’t quite enough for my taste. I also didn’t want to permanently cover over the page, either, in case I wanted to come back to it again one day and do more work, etc. So I decided I’d add a sentiment to the page on a piece of orange-yellow card stock from Neenah. I just wrote out a pretty quote about autumn with my Sharpie pen and then simply paper-clipped it to the page.

aspens-4I have another autumn inspired layout coming up in my next art journal entry so stay tuned!

Hope you enjoyed the layout. Leave a comment below or like the page and share with your friends. :) Thanks for reading!


List of materials:

Canson Mixed Media sketchbook
Mod Podge
Golden Soft Gel (Matte)
Artists Loft Acrylics
Daler Rowney FW Pearlescent liquid acrylic
Textbook paper
Sharpie Pen
Neenah Creative Collection card stock
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