Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Universal Glue


The month of February 
gives us opportunity 
to muse about such things..

as I work on my art journal pages for 
and I am writing my annual love letter
to myself..

I realized in the studio the other day,
gazing around as I wrote..

just how many hearts I have,
 that others have given me..
and many that I have made myself..
for myself..

When I think of love...

I cannot wrap my head around
the allness of it..

the heart shape seems like such a tiny symbol
for something so great..
something so all encompassing...

for me, to try to define it, is to limit it
and to classify it would be an attempt to diminish it..

To use art terms..
I think that 
Love is a universal glue..
it holds everything together..
it keeps planets spinning in orbit
and concerns itself with the tiniest of flowers..

for me, it is in all the details..
and it can heal everything..

So as I celebrate 
Valentine's day..
I wish you love..
May you find many things about yourself
that are beautiful...
and may it all unfold in..


Friday, February 9, 2018

Ribbon Tied Books and Journals

There are so many ways
to secure your handmade 
gentle viewers..

I have barely scratched the surface..
let me know if you
are interested in hardware and elastics..
and I will create another

I have a long list of upcoming topics for videos..
believe it or not, I am already working on another 
tissue paper video..

experimenting with products..

upcoming videos include:

Creating the Perfect Travel Journal
Antique Photo Album Turned Travel Journal
More Mixed Media Textures and Backgrounds

Studio Tour
this time I will share all my current works in progress

but the next video will be

Art Journal Prompts..
and I will be opening my journals to 
use as illustrations..

Have a glorious weekend..


Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Mixed Media-Notes on a Dream

Notes on a Dream
was the title of my article in 
Somerset Studio
in the January/February issue
of this year..

Detail, Caterina Giglio, Waiting for the Rain.

and referred to the whole body of work
that I created for 
my last show...
The Naturalists' Notebook

Mixed Media, Caterina Giglio, 8 x 8 on cradled board, Waiting for the Rain.

as well as all the new pieces that you see here..

Mixed Media, Caterina Giglio, 8 x 8, cradled board, The Similarities of Life 

it isn't unusual dear reader for me to create
several more pieces in a particular series..
especially if the 
haunts me..

Detail from Love in a Mist, Caterina Giglio

as this one did..
the idea came to me in a dream..
and it would not let me go..

Love in a Mist, Caterina Giglio, Mixed Media, 8 x 8, cradled board.

each piece represents to me the 
the beautiful imperfection
of life and the ephemeral quality of nature.. 

The Eternality of Life, Caterina Giglio, Mixed Media, 5 x 5 cradled board.

but even more than that
they remind me to

A detail from The Eternality of Life, Caterina Giglio.

to get up and resurface in joy..
my time may be short..

Caterina Giglio, Mixed Media on cradled board, 8 x 8, A Petition To Time.

my life, 
may be just a quick season long..

The Shape of Things, Caterina Giglio, Mixed Media, 5 x 7 cradled board.

but I can focus on the beauty 
around us, and as an artist,
I must..

it is simply my calling to

and to pass it on..


Tuesday, January 30, 2018

January Art Journal Pages

If it is Tuesday,
gentle reader,
that must mean
it is time for another blog post..

with a new year

so I have decided to share the full spread at the beginning of my post
and to talk about how and why this spread came about for me....
Before and After...

as you know, 
I always create a self portrait for January..
I decided to paint
a quick likeness..

definitely not perfect..
but it goes with my "before"
which my mother rejected
because my hair was messy...

nothing has changed..
I am as unruly 
as my hair..

What you do not see in this spread ..
is the writing lying under the black background..
writing about age..

 self acceptance..

and rejecting a common belief
 that age is somehow a disease..
a problem..
that we must decline..
I reject all of that..
and more..

I have decided to live fully..
regardless of my age..
and see it as a blessing..

The ingredients this month are, black gesso, acrylic paints, personal photos, colored pencils, permanent chalk marker, decorative tape.  

work continues in my studio
on my little flower journal..

and I am undertaking a couple of new portraits..

I am also working on plans for my next video..
and chewing on ideas for new books..

there is simply no rest for the creative..


Friday, January 26, 2018

My Tissue Paper Technique

As promised,
here is my vlog post
where I share my tissue paper technique to make 
butterflies and dragonflies..

really anything else you want
to create that looks like a transparency..

I began this quest into using tissue paper, 
because I did not like the look of transparencies 
on boards..
they were difficult to adhere and were too shiny,
and I wanted something softer...

so after much experimentation, 
I came up with this technique
I hope you enjoy it

let me know what you think..
and as always,
I will be glad to answer 
any questions..

Have a beautiful weekend!!


Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Mixed Media Flower Journal

Forgive me,

I know I always post on 

but yesterday was my birthday...

so I took the day off
well, not exactly..


because I went to the studio to work on this..
my themed

you may remember the little hand tied journal I made..
and if not, just click the link above..

and as often happens,
the intention I have for a project....
does not seem to be the intention
the project has for itself..
at least part of my intention
does not match..
I am still negotiation color choices..

Part of my
 intention was to journal write the importance that flowers have always had in my life..

as a young child, I remember falling in love with a sunflower.. 
pulling it out of the ground and 
dragging it into the house roots, dirt clods and all ...
  it was so beautiful and I wanted 
to give it to my Mother....

She was aghast and far more concerned with the dirty floor...
 and from that incident.. 
I decided that she
  did not 
love flowers...

in fact, I can never remember her buying a 
single bouquet ..

I promised 
that this year I would just post whatever is going on
in the studio...
so here it is..
bitty peeks into my small
themed journal..
and a snippet of memory from a five year old girl child.

The photo below is not blurry...
it is the opening cover art,
through the parchment frontispiece 

I am planning to submit the journal
but I am NOT thinking I will meet
the current deadline that I have made for myself, because 
I keep ripping up..
the images that I create and 
many things just don't seem to want to live there..

dear reader 
I have decided to give myself more time...
as I work out 
outside of my control
and allow what will be to 
manifest ..

I am in love with the textures,
and this year I want to take more time 
to develop more fully
my ideas..
and my work.

In the studio I am prepping for a new video
on my 
tissue paper technique
that I used
to make the sheer butterflies in
my Naturalists' Notebook 

I am also working on my January Pages
in my new 2018 art journal..

and contemplating some new portraits..
and you will definitely be in the loop..

Ciao, ciao!

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

A Year of Journaling

As promised,
gentle reader, 
I have all the photos
of my year long journaling process..

and I will give you more insight, techniques and of course

Strathmore Mixed Media Journal
Ingredients: gesso, plaster cloth, acrylic paint, ribbon, handmade papers, paper ephemera, upholstery threads, tea dyed fabric.

Technique: Hand applied plaster cloth, painted and sanded

I am always a bit stunned to see it posted
as a body of work..

it has been such a big commitment 
to keep yearly...
and I cannot help but to feel 
a deep sense of accomplishment..
not just about what I create,  
what I change about myself..
and what I give thanks for...
but it is also about what I 

Cover detail of Caterina Giglio's 2017 Art Journal 

I always begin the year by creating a self portrait, this reminds me to look closely at myself
and to really make some good decisions about my new year, my new direction both personally and professionally. Last year, I was beginning a new personal transformation. I was born with jet black hair and with all the grey hair moving in, I had been dying it black for many years. I decided that I would allow the white to grow in gradually, rather than allowing the white to grow in and cutting it very short. 
I seriously had no idea how difficult this change would be for me.
I looked into mirrors and saw my reflection back in store windows and did not recognize myself.
I often felt that I no longer knew who I was..
who are YOU? 
I thought...
 and what have you done with my Cat?

I am still chewing on this..

Ingredients: Personal photos, gesso, pencil, acrylic paint, collage, paint pens, colored pencil, graphite pencil.
Technique: Gesso transfer on paper, Water photos, painted and collaged.

As usual in February I began by writing myself a love letter. This is a very old personal tradition, longer than the selfie. I believe that others can love me only to the extent that I love myself. 
Since I did not grow up with a lot of self esteem, I have been faithful in cultivating this.
Each February, I write about the things that I love about myself.
The first time I did this, I have to admit, 
I did not fill the whole page..
 I have learned to love me, 

 in the last few years, 
I have decided to be a cheerleader for love..
and I really like that about myself..

The writing for February is underneath the images and the paint, both on the blank page and then on top
of the first coat of gesso..

Ingredients: pencil, gesso, acrylic paint, stencils, paper ephemera, wrapping paper.
Technique: Monoprinting, Stenciling   

I wrote directly on the mono print below..
give yourself permission to speak your own language..
be unperturbed that others may not like
or appreciate what you do..
I was reminding myself to speak with my authentic voice.. 
The issue in March is not the point, it was self inflicted, but I can say that I wrote down old
hurts and let them go..

What I love about this intuitive process is that I realized that the script on the right side of the spread really looked like a new language.. I love how that happens ... 

Ingredients: gesso, acrylic paint, collage papers walnut ink, wrapping papers antique print, watercolors
Technique: Mono printing, decollage

Feet, feet, do you know the way...?
To the future that is..
I was having issues with my right foot, which slowed me down a bit and has taken a chunk out of my work out. So I was not at all surprised to see feet showing up in the spread. I rarely use magazines, my personal feeling is that I would rather not use another person's art in my work..
at all.

But.. I was so very drawn to these images and decided to use them for this end..
to flesh out exactly why I had this persistent issue and to allow myself
the opportunity to project what I want to see in my future...

The spiral represented the work I needed to do and the circular path it takes
to find the answers.

Ingredients: gesso, acrylic paint, monoprints magazine ads, wrapping paper, handmade papers, chalk markers, Pencil.
Technique: Hand painted photocopies, Monoprinting. 

The Month of May went by in a blur, a rush of activity. I was working on my Naturalists' Notebook show and was preoccupied by meeting my deadline..
packing and flying out for the show. 
This spread captures for me, the fast pace and the determined focus of creating a one woman show.
The butterfly is my symbol for feminine transformation.

Ingredients: Pencil, collage, gesso, tissue paper, collage paper, wrapping paper, acrylic paints.
Technique: Gesso transfer, decollage.

Sailing through the Caribbean was the way we spent most of our days in June. It was a family cruise, daughters, grandchildren, in laws... and there were a lot of us, so we had a lovely time, watching grandchildren explore, enjoy water and islands.. and for the most part, just relaxing.
Creating something simple and yet grand is always a challenge when I am at sea. 
How do you capture  that endless, magnificent blue and do it any justice?


Ingredients: Gesso, pencil, papers, acrylic paints, 
Technique: Hand painted papers torn in strips to form an image.

Every family has something to deal with. My family always wrestles with issues of the heart. I have written about it many times over the years. My father died of congestive heart failure. Currently I have Aunts and cousins who are or have dealt with heart issues. In July, one of my Aunties was hospitalized and we all had grave concern for her. My pages reflect the angst I was feeling, as my heart went out to her and my own thoughts about healing 
the heart, patching it up and holding it together. 
I turned to cloth as it is a meditation for me to stitch...

Ingredients: gesso, acrylic paints, wrapping paper, unbleached linen, safety pins, collage, cheesecloth.
Technique: Hand stitched cloth heart applied to the page.

San Diego is the place that my brother in law and his family get together to spend their vacation. They rent cottages right on the pier and it is close to shops, and restaurants  and of course the beach. It was lovely to be back in California, as we had lived there many years ago and I tried to capture both the peacefulness of the visit and the texture of the place..
...... living right over the water....

Ingredients: acrylic paint, gesso, Personal photos, wrapping paper, modeling paste, walnut ink, pencil, colored pencil, drawing, Art Graf pencil.
Technique: Stencils with modeling Paste, Starfish drawing on mixed media paper.

My husband was out of town. He was working in Texas on the remediation for a hurricane, called Harvey, when another hurricane began to make dance moves toward our state. We called her Irma and she looked very big and very scary. 
If you followed my blog then, you know that we were not in the mandatory evacuation area, but we decided to leave anyway so we did not have to subject ourselves to the ordeal.
My pages show the storm and I hope convey the feeling of both being vulnerable and my utter sense of fragility in the face of such complete power. 
On the drive home we were enchanted by butterflies all along the route..
It amazes me how one symbol can illustrate so many different things...

Ingredients: Acrylic paint, walnut inks, paper ephemera, handmade paper, chalk markers.
Technique: Decollage

I was lamenting the fact that we do not have a pretty autumn here, in fact the trees shed leaves that have a muddy brown color. So I went with that, making my own leaves from paper dyed with walnut ink. We rarely have windy days but we did in October and my page reveal the winds of change coming. The death of the year always makes me pause. In my pages, I wanted to show bits of the background, the leafless trees and things scattered in the breeze.

Ingredients: Acrylic paint, hand made papers, personal photos, handmade leaves, cheesecloth. antique prints, paper ephemera, walnut ink, glazing medium.

My pages are really simple, and there isn't much to say.
We journeyed to visit our kids for the Thanksgiving holiday, so we spent lots of time, with family, eating and drinking and enjoying the time. Thankful for family.
Simply feeling full and abundant.

Ingredients: gesso, pen, acrylic paint, walnut ink, personal photo, 
Technique: Dry brush painting.

Swept away by the music is the best way to summarize my December pages. I keep a metal wire basket on my art journaling desk. Each month the left over papers from each spread as well as the unused papers go into that basket as well as scrap pieces of wrapping papers. In December I challenge myself to create a bricolage spread..
using just what I have available in the basket. 
Listening to music... collaging to the beauty.. just allow it to unfold. 

Ingredients: pencil, paper ephemera, wrapping papers, acrylic ink, walnut ink, glazing medium.
Technique: Decollage

And now I think I will go to the studio
and ponder my
self portrait...

Thank you for viewing and reading..
I so appreciate your kind comments...


Follow by Email