“The End is a Beginning”

Happy Friday to all! We made it to the end of another week!

This week was extremely busy and hectic for me, as I had a four-day inservice workshop to attend, as well as a night class on one of those evenings, so unfortunately it hasn’t been a very productive art week.

Even so, I do want to share another of my pages that appears in my friend Kim Rae Nugent’s recently published book, Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, and Collaborations, which can be purchased at Amazon.com. It’s called, “The End is a Beginning.”

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This page was created on a background of collaged vintage book pages, and features gesso, fluid acrylics, rubber stamps, pigment ink, stamped bubble wrap, stenciled mesh, rub-ons, Washi tape, a date stamp, and one of Kim’s photographs from the book.

The flaming fall leaves in the photo definitely served as the catalyst for this page. To me, autumn always carries the significance of being one of nature’s endings. This is a big reason why it’s never been my favorite season; I always feel a bit depressed when I see leaves changing color and falling from the trees, because it always signals that the cold, long, dark winter is about to descend upon us. However, sometimes endings are good things because they close one door and open another–they might take us from something that maybe wasn’t ideal for us, and deliver us to something a lot better. When I made this page, I was feeling a bit fearful of a change that I thought might be imminent, but I told myself that no matter what, I’d be OK–that if a change truly was on the horizon, it was probably for the best, and that I would adapt in the end.

I’m looking ahead to the fast-approaching autumn, and still thinking of it as a kind of letdown, but thankfully there’s still plenty of summer left to enjoy! Let’s all enjoy it this weekend! 🙂

 

 

 

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“Barren Space”

Happy Thursday to all! The weekend is almost here!

This is another journal page which appears in my friend Kim Rae Nugent’s latest book, Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, & Collaborations, which is available for purchase now on Amazon.com.

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Entitled “Barren Space,” the page is about the way it feels when one has arrived at the conclusion that they are trapped in a hopeless situation in his/her life. I compared this experience to a plant which finds itself existing in the midst of a concrete jungle, hard and cold and inhospitable. This concept leapt into my mind immediately after seeing a picture that appears in Kim’s book, of a vine growing across an old cement wall.

I started this page with a layer of handwritten journaling, and covered it with another layer of vintage book pages and Washi tape. I then added acrylic paint, gesso, stamped pigment ink, pen markings, a few pieces of construction mesh I found in a parking lot, and a date stamp.

This is one of my favorite pages that I contributed to the book. I loved how the vintage book pages I chose serendipitously featured words and phrases relevant to this topic; I rubbed away the paint in these areas with a paper towel and drew attention to them with my India ink pen. I also liked the possibility the vines presented, as a place to house more handwritten journaling.

Hope your upcoming weekend is wonderful! 🙂

 

 

 

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“How to Succeed”

Good morning, everyone!

Today I will be sharing another journal page that is featured in Kim Rae Nugent’s newest book, Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, & Collaborations. It’s called, “How to Succeed,” and is basically a reminder to me of the positive values I must continue to cultivate as I travel along and grow in my journey as an artist. This page is unique, because generally I don’t like to include my own lettering in my journals; instead, I prefer to rely upon stickers, stamps, and stencils. The lettering contained in the flower’s petals is my own, and I think it’s kind of cool, even if it isn’t 100% perfect! 😉

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This page was created with collaged vintage book pages, gesso, Washi tape, spray inks, stencils, pigment ink, stamps, rub-ons, pens, a vintage Dymo label maker, and an image of a flower that was trimmed from Kim’s book.

Kim’s book can be purchased now at Amazon.com.

Have a wonderful week!

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“Fresh Start”

Hi there! Hope you’re enjoying this beautiful summer weekend!

Today I’m happy to share another of my recent journal pages, which is featured in Kim Rae Nugent’s newest book, Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, & Collaborations.

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This page is entitled, “Fresh Start,” and it was created just a few days after the last page I presented here on the blog, in a period of time that was highly challenging for me at my job. There were many days that I woke up at the sound of the alarm clock, remembered the excruciating stress I’d certainly be facing that day, and wished I could press the “reset” button and start over. I think many of us feel this way at some point in our lives, like we desperately need a “do-over.” Our daily struggles become exhausting, and we want to transplant ourselves from where we are to someplace new, different, and better. Thankfully, not long after this page was finished, I made the decision to pursue a change, and have now been placed in a new position in a different setting, far removed from so much of the stress that had been dragging me down for so long.

At the time I created this page, I was feeling a need to do a lot of writing as an emotional outlet, and so the first layer of this page consists of handwritten journaling, which I covered with collaged book pages. In addition, gesso, spray inks, acrylic paint, stencils, pigment ink, stamps, masking tape, Washi tape, rub-ons, a date stamp, India ink, pens, and an image from the Journal Starters book were used.

The image of the eggs in a nest really spoke to me, because it signifies the beginning of the miracle of life, and also calls to mind birds, which to me have always represented the idea of freedom. I mean, who doesn’t feel like they want to fly away from the chaos of their life at some point? I used a lot of bird-themed rub-on images and phrases to embellish certain areas of this page, and found that it all came together well.

Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, & Collaborations can be purchased at Amazon.com.

Have a great week!

 

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“Storm Clouds”

Hello to all! Hope you’re having an awesome week!

Today I’m happy to share one of my recent journal pages, which is featured in my friend Kim Rae Nugent’s newest book, Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, & Collaborations.

This page is called “Storm Clouds,” and was created earlier this year in response to a highly negative and stressful situation at work. I really don’t know a kinder, gentler way to describe what was going on, except to say that the proverbial sh** was about to hit the fan, and there was no way to hide or escape from it. I knew I had no choice but to take a stand for what was right, and it tied me up in knots for a long time. Thankfully, asserting myself gave me the confidence to fight for the opportunity to leave the chaos, and today the future looks significantly brighter.

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This page was created with vintage book pages, patterned paper, gesso, acrylic paint, stamped punchinella and bubble wrap, rub-ons, stickers, found poetry, a date stamp, pigment ink, pens, and an image from the Journal Starters book.

Kim’s book is now available for purchase at Amazon.com.

Thanks for giving me the opportunity to share my work with you! It is indeed one of my most favorite and enjoyable parts of being an artist!

Have a wonderful week! 🙂

 

 

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Recent Publications!

Happy Wednesday, everyone! Hope you all had a marvelous 4th of July!

I spent much of the holiday weekend in my studio, working hard to meet some upcoming publication deadlines.

I’ve been fortunate to have some of my work published this summer, including an artist’s book called Die Geister (The Ghosts) that I created back in 2014 after a study-abroad trip to Berlin, Germany. The journal, which appears in the Summer 2016 issue of Somerset Studio Gallery magazine, is now available on news stands and at Stampington & Company‘s website right now!

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In addition, <meta http-equiv=”refresh” content=”0; URL=/jenny.petricek?_fb_noscript=1″ /> my friend and fellow artist Kim Rae Nugent’s latest book, Journal Starters: Nature Backgrounds, Textures, & Collaborations also just became available for purchase! This book features amazing photography and thought-provoking prompts to inspire one’s art journaling practice, and I’m honored to be one of the contributing artists. Eight of my pages are featured in the book, and I look forward to sharing some of them here very soon! To purchase the book, please visit Amazon.com!

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Have a wonderful rest of the week! See you soon!

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“Rediscover Your Heart”

This is a page that I completed yesterday in my art journal, and it’s called, “Rediscover Your Heart.”

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For me, 2016 has been a year of reclaiming my health, one small improvement at a time. This summer, I’ve set a goal of losing ten pounds and have established a daily exercise regimen, which unfortunately isn’t something to which I’ve been greatly committed in the past few years.

Back in 2010-11, during a period of great anxiety and uncertainty, I gained 60 pounds after being prescribed the antidepressant Prozac. The excess weight took a major toll on my small frame, and strenuous activities such as running (which I’ve loved my whole life) put a lot of stress on the joints in my legs and became exceedingly difficult and painful. In addition, the extra pounds caused me to experience more issues with my asthma. Consequently, I pretty much stopped exercising and my fitness level suffered greatly. In 2014, when I stopped taking the medication, I quickly lost 40 pounds, but up to this point have been unable to drop the last 20. While I don’t feel terrible about my current weight, I know I could still stand to lose a few pounds. I also know I could and should get back into some semblance of good physical shape, because I’ve always been healthier and happier when I’ve been active. Exercise is beneficial for one’s lungs and heart, and that’s of the utmost importance as I get older, especially with my family history of cardiovascular disease. 

I started running again a few weeks ago, and even though I struggle with some old injuries from my days as a high school and college tennis player, it’s been going well. To prevent pain in my hip joints caused by frayed cartilage, I wear compression stockings and shorts and run only short distances; I augment my runs with low-impact biking and swimming. I can feel my strength and stamina growing, and my breathing is getting better. I’ve even lost a couple of pounds already!

This page, which celebrates my rediscovery of my love of exercise and the importance of being heart-healthy (both physically and emotionally), was built upon a collage of old book pages, paper napkins, ephemera, and Washi tape, and also includes spray inks & stencils, pigment inks & stamps, tape, stickers, die cuts, and pens.

What is a goal you can set for yourself this summer, to improve your health? Take one step at a time, one foot in front of the other, and you can make it happen!

Have a great week! 🙂

 

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