Happy Saturday! I've been at the zoo all day with Urban Sketchers, hence this very late post. When we first got there, it was freezing, but now, 5.30 PM, it's hotter than a New Mexico chili pepper, good weather for today's topic: Hot and Cold.
What I'm talking about here are hot and cold colors, or in other words, the backgrounds to your journal designs. When I sit down to create a collage or mixed media piece, I often don't know what will be in it, or what colors I'll choose. Sometimes I just let my hand wander over my supplies until I find something that feels right.
For today's piece, I seemed to have needed hot, bright red, orange and yellow. Immediately the idea of "heat in the kitchen" came to mind, meaning, I think, "If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen." I may have sub-consciously been thinking about the A-Z Challenge, i.e., if you can't handle blogging every day, out you go, LOL.
But on a more serious level, I started to think about my grandmother's infamous goulash, so hot it quite literally brought tears to the eyes. And she made it all the time! In retrospect, I know I would probably enjoy it much better today than I did as a child, but back then, it was pure torture to eat. All the same, I loved watching her prepare the dish: getting out the big Dutch oven; tying up the spices and peppercorns in cheesecloth bags; the deep red of the gravy once it had simmered all day. I remember having a special fondness for the bay leaves, not quite believing that you could actually use real leaves to cook with.
Today's art page is rather simple, but the kitchen and cooking theme is one I could go on about forever. If the weather today had been a little warmer, I might have gone for a "cold" page of icy blue, leading me back to those long-ago summers when my best friend and I would ride our bikes to the closest 7-11 for electric-blue Slurpees. Or the time I experimented with blue food coloring for the frosting on a batch of cupcakes, and kind of overdid the color.
There is so much you can do in an art journal based on food, so much that I sometimes think it's one of my favorite themes! For instance:
- Beloved (and secret) family recipes.
- Special occasion and holiday meals.
- "Dream" meals and baked good you'd love to try making.
- Recalling when you learned (or didn't learn!) to cook or bake.
- Ethnic foods from various cultures.
- Our relationships to food; the good, the bad, the hopelessly tempting.
- Trying a new and healthier lifestyle: making better choices and celebrating the changes.
- Must-have ingredients, and why you rely upon them.
Tip of the Day: Art journals aren't always for ourselves. An illustrated journal based solely on recipes and kitchen memories makes a beautiful gift, especially for a younger friend, or member of the family just starting out and learning there's more to life than the microwave. Bon appetit!