A day at the museum

I thought it would be fun to share a little art challenge I posted in my new facebook group. Visiting a museum is so inspiring and I for one don’t do it often enough. Wouldn’t it be nice to stroll through one in our area with intention? To take photos of the art that makes us want to create and if you’re up for it, take the time to make a couple of sketches when we see something that’s in line with our art goals?

I think it would be so interesting. We creatives love our bubble (and I am no different, I love being at home in my studio). But sometimes it’s so energising to go out into the world and submerge ourself in art!

I would love it if you would join me in my quest from your end of the world, wouldn’t it be so wonderful if we could share all that amazing art with each other? 

I had a wonderful time at Museum De Reede here in Antwerp! It’s all about printing and those of you who took my class “No Press? No Problem!” know that I’m totally in love with those techniques. One day I would love to own my own press so I can dive into etching and other techniques that require a press. There are many artworks by Francisco Goya, Félicien Rops and Edvard Munch in this beautiful museum.

I honestly hadn’t expected to fall in love with Goya’s work because his paintings don’t really speak to me. But his etchings were mind blowing. This media was much more suitable for his dark scenes. If you’re ever there, you can ask a looking glass at the reception so you can study all kinds of details.

I loved his twisted sense of humor and he was so skilled! I deflowered my museum sketchbook by studying two of his amazing expressions.

If you want to practice interesting and intense facial expressions, I recommend that you study some of Goya’s etches.

Edvard Munch was also very nice. I love that I could see his Madonna up close. Sadly I couldn’t take a good photograph of her due too many spotlights and the mirroring in the glass.

I loved this woodcut by Edvard Munch. The texture reminds me of Angel wings.

I felt very ambivalent towards Belgian artist Félicien Rops. He was extremely skilled and the first print below could easily be mistaken for a painting, it was magnificent. But there were also quite some works by him that were too disturbed for my taste. Mr Rops had issues and huge frustrations for sure. But the artworks that I liked, I loved!

The volunteers were amazing, enthusiastic and very helpful. I was happy to hear that this rather new, private museum will expand (they just bought the building next to it).

They’re also cooperating with the art academy and feature students’ work (two prints at this time). I thought that was nice!

They are inclusive towards people bound to a wheelchair. There are elevators and they have built the displays so that there’s room underneath for the legs so that everyone can enjoy the art in a comfortable way. This made me love this museum even more and I highly recommend it if you’re ever in Antwerp.

I will definitely go back by myself to fill up my little sketchbook. But next on my to do list is the FOMU (photo museum of Antwerp), because there’s an exposition there of one of my favourite photographers Stephan Vanfleteren. I can’t wait to see his emotive photographs in person. This art challenge appears to be the start of a nice habit for me, I hope it wil do the same for you. Enjoy all the beautiful art and let it inspire you on your journey!

Social Media Blackout

So yesterday, Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp broke for a lot of us in Europe and I’m embarrassed to say that it freaked me out a little bit. 

Sure, it was a great moment to focus on building my upcoming printing class (if you’re a student of me you can already see a little preview of where I’m at with my planning in your classroom). But it got me thinking. What if it broke completely next time? Or what if they will just call it quits in a couple of years? You may think I’m silly but it has happened before. Just look at Google Plus or Hyves if you are a fellow Dutchie. I still remember the outrage and sadness when they announced it. Personally I didn’t like Hyves all that much because of all the glitter options and hysterical animated gifs, but I get it. It took you years to connect with a lot of amazing people and then all of a sudden, your social platform is no more. 

That’s why I’m so happy that a lot of you have trusted me with your e-mail address so I can keep in touch with you. I love coming up with my quickie tutorials and I love seeing what you all are doing with them. Thank you from the bottom of my heart! ❤️ 

#dramaticartist #artteachersofig 

Win a free spot in Make Create Express

Woohoo! It’s Give Away Time! 🤗

We are less than 2 weeks away from the FREE Make Create Express Creative Retreat Weekend and to celebrate I’m giving away 1 spot in the Make Create Express- The Creative Journey Continues year long workshop!!

To enter just share this blog post on Facebook & be sure to tell me in the comments! I will announce the winner on June 25!

For extra entries (be sure to let me know in the comments here on my blog post):

  • Subscribe to my newsletter
  • Tell me what you would love to learn about in the free art tutorials of my upcoming newsletters (comment below).
  • share this post on other social media places such as your blog, twitter, pinterest, google, or other social network platform & leave me a comment with the link.

Good luck and don’t forget to join us for the Make Create Express Free Online Creative Retreat Weekend Event to enjoy free art lessons for a whole weekend!

You can find the rest of the Blog Hop here:

Creative invitation!

It’s almost time for our free creative retreat weekend! Are you psyched? I am! And to add to the fun there will be a creative invitation leading up to the event, starting on June 22nd, so we can get to know each other a little bit better. I hope you’ll join us, it will be fun to share our creative world! <3 

How does it work?
  • Simple! Each day, starting from June 22, share a photo and a few words inspired by the prompts above.
  • Be sure to follow me on instagram or facebook for the daily prompt breakdown.
  • You can share your photos on facebook, instagram or even your blog!
  • If you share them on instagram or facebook, please use the hashtags #creativeinvitation19 & #artismagiconline so we can find you all. You may always tag me, I would love to see!
  • If you are sharing your photos on your blog, please post the link below so that I can take a peek!
Why this is not a challenge
The lovely Galia feels that creative play should never fall on that “to do list” and I totally agree! Honestly, I suck at keeping up with all these art challenges. Even when I love them. Trying to keep up during our busy lives can feel a bit suffocating, you know? And we don’t want you to feel that way. So if you are only inspired by 4 of the 14 prompts, just do those! Do what feels right, do what makes you happy. Always! <3

In search of emotion

Last week my lesson in the year long online art course PYHAS2019 went live. I was incredibly nervous beforehand, being amongst all those wonderful teachers, but the students blew me away with their fabulous art and made me blush with their kind words. I always love it when teachers make a slideshow of the students’ work and I appreciate it even more now that I have made my own! Finding a decent app was a bit of a journey but here it is. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I am, I can’t stop watching these beauties. <3

Three’s a charm

I’m so excited I could cry big fat happy tears! I would have never guessed that, while I was preparing for my newsletter, my warm up excercise would inspire me for many days. I had so much fun with it that I decided to share my process with you guys through a rather unexpected online class.

It just flowed right out of me, I hope you will love it as much as I have! Here’s a little peek of what you can expect if you decide to join me on this adventure. 😉

Relax with some next level doodling

I have finally found some alcohol inks in a little shop I discovered here in Antwerp. I was so excited to finally be able to play with those babies! When I posted the result of my experiment on my instagram, I noticed that a lot of you guys really liked it, so I decided to spread the love and make a little tutorial so you can join in on the joy of drawing by association.

Doodling is known to be an excellent exercise for when you feel a little stressed out and with these alcohol inks the process is even more enjoyable. It’s a lot of fun interpreting those inky stains and it will help you to come up with some new ideas for sure!

Smoke out a muse in hiding

We all have those dreaded days where we can’t seem to find our muse anywhere, no matter how loud or how long we call out for her. If this dry spell goes on for too long, it can even make us feel like there is no point in showing up at all anymore and that is a shame.

A muse absolutely can be motivated to show her face, even when she doesn’t feel like it. It’s good to have a few warm up exercises up your sleeve to smoke out a muse in hiding.

This is one of my favourites and if you end up really loving your little story, just keep adding media until you’re looking at an awesome, quirky and finished piece of art! No more waiting around for our fickle muses to show up, it’s time to take matters into our own hands. 😉

I’m beaming with joy

I must admit, there have been a couple of moments where I wanted to pull out my hair while I was trying to figure out how to get my very own courses on my website. I cursed like a sailor, threw my hands up in the air in despair, the whole shabang! But what I really wanted to achieve was a nice user experience for my students and (I hope I’m not jinxing it) I think I’ve done it! I will continue to improve my site but for now I will be putting my feet up and relax for a little bit.

I also made a little teaser video of my first full class “Tiny Portraits, Tiny Palette”! I hope you guys will enjoy it as much as I did creating this one.

My wish upon our world

Respect all life

Today I got a question about the symbolism on this portrait and I thought I would share my thoughts with all of you as well. I am a lover of symbolism and I use it in my art quite often. To me these aren’t just pretty symbols to embellish my portraits but a way to express my story, my vision.

I use an ankh whenever I want to express my wish for all of us to respect and protect all life. Not only that of our fellow man, but the sentient animals sharing our space and the soil life that makes it possible for our crops to grow, our ocean which is filled with life and sadly, with a lot of our waste and toxins as well.

It’s time for us to cherish and really appreciate everything that’s around us, we live on such a special planet and I don’t think we realise that often enough. It’s time for us to protect her, by making choices when we shop and by using our voice, our vote, our compassion.

Creating art is a way for me to process my thoughts and to share pieces of my inner world. I don’t want to climb on my soap box like this every single day but my portraits are a light version to share my concerns and my wishes with you all. Thank you so much for appreciating them, that means the world to me.