Alcohol Inking Love

I’ve been using a lot of my alcohol ink stash lately for various projects, which inspired me to do a summary here of my most favorite ways to use this fun and easy material.

Alcohol lnk Stash

My first alcohol inking love is for making altered dominoes.  In my own creative practice I find the blending and mixing of colors on the domino’s smooth surface a relaxing and soothing process.  I often like to also add printed words or magazine photo collage to embellish the domino’s intention.  This past week, I just mailed out an altered art domino I was working on for Emery who is on my 2013 Creative Pay It Forward list.  In my art therapy work with women survivors of domestic violence and trauma, making altered dominoes can be an empowering way to create meaningful symbols of affirmation & strength for themselves or to give to one another.

Altered Domino: Create It Forward
Create It Forward Altered Domino for Emery

If you’re interested in learning how to get started with your own altered domino making with alcohol inks, download this how-to:

Altered Dominoes with Alcohol Inks How to
Making Altered Dominoes with Alcohol Inks

Other things I’ve discovered that feeds my alcohol ink addiction includes using it for altering glossy photographs, as well as to make artist trading cards that are coated with a glossy surface.  And just recently, I was super excited to experiment with my inks on plastic slide mount covers when working on a small accordion book.

Alcohol Inking Examples
Oh…Let me ink the many ways…

What are some of your favorite ways to use alcohol inks?

My Beautiful, Altered Brain | Altered Book

Here are some altered book pages I’ve been working on for My Beautiful, but Altered Brain series.  I transformed a children’s board book with some of the photos I had made of the digital art I created of my MRI scans with some text content from the recent issue of Momentum Magazine, the quarterly publication of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Altered Book Pages | My Beautiful, Altered Brain

 This altered book includes 10 years of my MRI scans and shares my experience.

I’ve also been creating more digital art with the most recent MRI scans that I just had:

During my neurology appointment this month, I gave my neurologist one of Elizabeth Jameson‘s beautiful catalogs that I received from her a few months ago to keep sharing her inspiring work and the grateful impact her art has had on me throughout this year.  My altered book is dedicated to Elizabeth and her reminder that “the brain- even a brain with a disease- is beautiful, complex, and intriguing“.

MRI Digital Art for My Own Beautiful, but Altered Brain

Here are the first eight digital art images I’ve created with my MRI scans for My Own Beautiful, but Altered Brain:

First I photographed some sections of my old MRI films, then used photo editing software to transform the photo into digital art.

I really enjoyed the creative process of altering these scans. The process of experimenting & transforming each image provided me with an openness and freedom to explore different themes in a way that I couldn’t before.

As I faced each image and reflected on my experiences, I started to focus on those personal strengths that I believe have helped me the most in times of need related to managing illness: hope, bravery, learning, perseverance, and gratitude.

To my surprise I started to view these images, my driving need to create them, and my overall experience as a celebration of so many important things related to support, treatment, trying to stay healthy, active, being positive, gratitude, and balancing life.

I thought about everything I’ve been able to do, enjoy, create, give back to, and appreciate since my diagnosis 10 years ago.  While it hasn’t all been easy and can surface feelings of denial, isolation, frustration, worry, and uncertainty, there’s still lots for me to be thankful for.  These images are a reflection of that.

 My experience has inspired & contributed to making choices & doing things I didn’t think I could do, but I did- and it’s all good!

A big part of helping to be able to start this process of art-making with my MRI scans has been the inspiration of Elizabeth Jameson and her art, so this is definitely worth another mention. I’ve so admired her work, story, and advocacy from a distance via the Internet for awhile, but throughout the last few months I’ve enjoyed an e-mail correspondence with Elizabeth which continues to motivate me even further, has helped with additional reflection about how one views illness & has put much into perspective for me. Very grateful for this connection and support!

I hope to continue to develop this series further through perhaps using the images to create an altered book, a video or maybe use for some digital storytelling content. Making progress… 🙂