WOYWW ~ Getting Ready For Citra Solv

Citra Solv Art Experiment 1It’s another What’s On Your Workdesk Wednesday and before I get into this post I just want to say a heartfelt “thank you” to everyone who leaves comments on my blog. It’s fun and inspiring reading about your experiences and I appreciate you taking the time to visit and comment.

So . . . another week has passed with not much to show for it – at least in the arty craft sense.

I’ve been busy with other things though – lovely friends visiting for a long weekend, a trip the to the hair dressers which pretty much wiped out a whole afternoon and a ‘Get It Done Fun Day’ on Friday. So all in all it’s been an excellent week just not much making going on. That’s about to change . . .


My workdesk  is now set up for the great Citra Solv experiment.

I came across the technique a few weeks ago and then found some National Geographic magazines (a vital ingredient) at the market on Sunday so I knew I just had to give it a go. If you don’t know what I’m talking about you can view some examples of it on my Citra Solv Art Pinterest board. Basically you use the Citra Solv, which is an eco friendly cleaner, to alter the pages of National Geographic magazines.

Yesterday I tried out the method with a similar cleaning product I happen to have called ‘Zest It’. That’s what you can see in the picture. It didn’t work, however, so last night I ordered some Citra Solv from the net and I’m now eagerly waiting for it to arrive.

I’m so excited in fact that I couldn’t sleep last night.  At 2.00 a.m. I gave up trying and instead watched every video I could find on the technique (at least the altered paper part of it). Armed with that knowledge I’m ready to go and for round 1 I’m going to experiment with:

  • bubble wrap
  • cling film
  • string
  • masks
  • stencils
  • keys

. . . and anything else I think might “work”.

Now I need to find something fun to do while I’m waiting for the great Citra Solv experiment to begin!



Pinterest Rejigging Brings Relief

stay openA few weeks a go I made up a game for myself of trying to create something pinnable for each of my Pinterest boards. This was partly to narrow down my focus of what to make and also to do something potentially businessy that I actually enjoy. However, I’d set up my Pinterest accounts according to the common wisdom of what “works” from a commercial perspective.

This meant that, earlier in the year I set up a new account specifically for my coaching business and kept it separate from my personal one. However, I’ve been finding it too much work to manage and I wasn’t enjoying pinning to my business account as it was starting to feel a bit contrived . So I’ve decided to ignore the popular wisdom and go back to doing what I was doing originally and just have the one account.

Last Friday I started the process of consolidation, taking the best from my Flow Coaching account and moving it across to my personal one. As soon as I did this I felt a huge sense of relief.  Now I’m back to just being me, posting what I think is helpful or interesting to my clients and the stuff I personally like and find inspiring all in one place. It’s not singularly focused and from a business prospective some might say it’s messy but it’s an authentic reflection of where I am and so takes less effort and I’m happy with that.

Using Pinterest both for my own pleasure and as a business tool is fun again and now I can get back to playing my game of trying to create something to post on each of my boards.

To that end I decided to tackle the Citra Solv art board today. Citra Solv  is an American eco cleaning product which when applied to National Geographic magazines, creates interesting altered pages. (Visit my Citra Solv Pinterest board for some examples.)

At the weekend I found some National Geographic magazines at the Sunday market so since then I’ve been itching to give the technique a go. However, I don’t actually have any Citra Solv, but I do have something similar called Zest It . I thought I’d try using that since it sounds like it’s a very similar product but, sadly, it didn’t work. It just made the paper greasy and did nothing to the ink so I’m going to order some Citra Solv from the internet and try again another day.

Now I just need to decide which board I’ll tackle instead. Hmmmm . . .

Oh yeah . . . and if you’re keen to find out what I do with the Citra Solv once it arrives and you’re not already signed up to receive my updates, you can do so in the right hand column – under “Don’t Miss Out”. It would be great to have you follow along!

WOYWW ~ Not A Lot Of Making Going On

This week’s What’s On Your Workdesk Wednesday finds me with a number of items in progress and not much done.

Thanks to everyone who left comments on my blog last week. I really do appreciate them.

Orange DeskThe large canvas is an old painting which has been lying dormant for months. I was inspired to take it up again when I heard that Mandarin Orange Monday is celebrating their 100th birthday and having a giveaway. However, I’ve missed the deadline for that so it will probably end up back in the “waiting for inspiration” pile.

The book poetry is moving again thanks to Bookworm Laura’s and Robyn’s suggestions to add some gesso and paint. Why on earth didn’t I think of that?

The tea bag is still there as a reminder. I’ve yet to do anything with them. I have started some research though and created a Tea Bag Art board on Pinterest. I know, I know . . . creating a Pinterest board doesn’t count as making art!

The cards in the background are from a board game I bought to upcycle. I got them out because someone (sorry, I’ve forgotten who) mentioned an altered card swap and I’ve been thinking about doing that.

So . . . sadly, it’s been a bit of a faffing around week with not a lot of making going on. I wish I could clone myself and have a ‘Get It Done Fun Day‘ with me. It’s so much easier to motivate others and bathe in the glory of their successes rather than get on with my own stuff. :-)

Ah well. Today’s a new day and all that!

WOYWW ~ Envelope Art Collage

It’s time for What’s On Your Workdesk Wednesday again and here’s a quick peek at mine.

flower mail art


I’m not sure what I’ll do with the doily paper dress yet or with the tea bags but I’m looking forward to finding out!

The computer’s there because I’m still working on creating a pin for each of my Pinterest boards so am using it for reference.

I’m finding it really helpful to have some limits on what I might create. Standing in the attic with all my goodies around me and infinite possibilities is often a bit overwhelming. Confining myself to something for Pinterest helps narrow down my choices. It will be interesting to see how that works out when things swing the other way and I start to run out of boards!

The original idea was to link the images to the ‘Get It Done Fun Days’ but I’m not sure how I’d do that without making the art a bit contrived. Maybe I could add something in the description . . . hmmmmm . . .

The first piece I did was some Found Poetry. (Click the link if you want to read the full story and see the end result.) Suffice it to say I was delighted with the poem itself because it fitted the ‘Get It Done Fun Days’ theme unbelievably well. The illustration was less than I’d hoped though and then I spoiled it.

However, it all worked out in the end as, in a flash of inspiration, I pinned it on my Pinterest Fails board.

The second piece is for my Mail art board and is based on another pin which I found on Flickr – https://www.flickr.com/photos/monda-loves/5527214458/in/photostream.

flowers envelope artThis was really fun to make as I love using recycled stuff. The envelope is from the 60′s with a pre-decimalisation stamp (it’s got a one shilling price), some handwritten notes on DH Lawrence from an old school file, upcycled buttons and a recycled piece of paper from an old sketchbook.

Now, the million dollar question . . . what am I going to do with it?

Linking to Art Journal Journey where this month’s theme is Flower Power.

Theres Good News And . . .

I know, I know. You don’t hear from me for months and then you get 2 emails in as many days. Well . . . I did mention that I was going to make a ‘Get It Done Fun Days‘ pin for each of my Pinterest boards and that’s what seems to have happened. Not in the way I intended and not for the board I was planning on, but that’s what happens when you stop twiddling your thumbs and take the next step.

I didn’t have a client yesterday morning and felt at a bit of a loss as to what to do. After a lot of harrumphing, sighing and general inner whinging my eye fell on a decidedly unattractive painting on the wall. The last time I visited it I’d tried to remedy it’s unattractiveness by tearing up some index pages from an A to Z atlas and sticking them on to it. It didn’t work.

But then, in a separate twiddling thumbs waiting for the muse incident I picked at the bits that weren’t properly stuck down and ripped them off leaving more jaggedy space in between. Better I thought.

So, yesterday, I’m staring into space when my eyes land on those bits of paper and I think – I know, I’ll stick on some of that Hebrew writing I found in a book on Sunday. So off I go to find the book.

Fast forward an hour or so and I’m sitting with a discarded pile of torn pages having been distracted by the words on the first page that were just screaming out to be turned into a blackout poem.

Put that scream together with the ‘make a pin for every board’ idea and you get:

Get It Done Blackout Poem


such a profusion
there was no room for more.

But the impetus for
emerged and

they took up again
the creative process


Is that not bloody spot on for a ‘Get It Done Fun Days’ pin? Yep. I thought so too. Feeling very smug I was.

So then I moved on to decorating the page. I wasn’t so thrilled with how that bit turned out but it’s my first attempt so it was good enough. And there you have the good news – a very apt blackout poem that flowed from twiddly thumbs – hoorah!

Cue music – “And then I go and spoil it all by saying something stupid like . . .”

Actually I didn’t really say something stupid, just “oh s**t”.

I spilled my wine on my beautiful new poem. Yep. I  S P I L L  E D   M Y   B L O O D Y   W I N E   O N   I T  before even a drop had touched my lips. Klutz!

And as if that wasn’t enough I noticed I’d doodled my connecting lines in the wrong place. Bloody, bloody, bloody . . . and I’d been feeling so smug.

Wine stain. Bad news. Boo!

So . . . now I’m working on getting over my huge disappointment before this morning’s first ‘Get It Done’ session . . .


Right . . . that’s me over it!

And here’s another bit of good news . . . even though I won’t be putting my poem on my new Blackout Poetry board it will fit very nicely on my Pinterest Fails board. Result!

One board down and way too many to think about to go.


Linking to Inspire Me Monday