Packing Tape-Transfer

We are moving! To Dallas! And every time I tape up a box my mind wonders to the many uses for packing tape that don’t have a thing to do with moving-lol! This ‘packing tape transfer’, is not nearly as fun as the crafty kind. We are excited though to transfer our family to a place where my DH (darling hubby) won’t have to fly a day-long commute to work. After 12 years of that kind of living arrangement we are happily walking into phase two of ‘See Nate Commute’, a 25 minute drive to the airport!


During our last trip, on the flight from Springfield to Chicago, I left my Art Journal on the plane.

It was full of lino cut images that I was turning into journal pages. I had it about 3/4 full of almost done pages like these, just waiting for the finishing journaling and doodling.

So if any of you see some of these faces ‘out there’ let me know! I’d so love to find this journal again.

The one nice thing is that because these pages all started with my lino cuts, I can use the same images to begin new pages. I still have all my hand carved stamps and will begin again. Just like our move, where we will begin a new chapter in our lives.  One we hope will bring us more family time with Nate home more often, less stress with him trying to commute a long distance to work, and with new opportunities for growth. It feels good to move somewhere where we already know some people and already have offers of help unloading on the other end of the move.

So you may not hear much from me in the next couple of weeks and now you know why:-)

Journey on…

Counting Down the Days To Cortona

March 31-April 7, 2012 CORTONA ITALY

This is one of those ‘trip of a lifetime’ events that requires some advance planning. It’s in the back of my mind as I work through the tasks of today, sitting there like a prize at the end of the race! I’ve never been to Italy and going there to create art with a small group of artists is exciting beyond words!


All-inclusive* workshop includes:
Escorted Group Travel
Florence to Cortona March 31, 2012****

Five days of instruction
Seven nights accommodations
in historic Cortona** (Private room & bath)

Local Etruscan Museum & Museo Diocesano
All meals***
(Italian breakfast, lunch and dinner)

Daily wine tasting opportunities
Day trip to Florence
Tuscan cooking class & dinner
Vist to local outdoor market
A farewell wine tasting dinner

**Included with “Hotel” plans only. See details.
***Included with “Group Meal Plan” only. See details.
****Specific departure time only; to be announced

*All-inclusive plans only.
Air travel and ground transportation to/from Cortona is not included
and is the responsibility of each participant

Liquid Sketching with Pam Carriker

Derivan Liquid Pencils are a relatively new medium that takes sketching to a whole new place! With different tints in both permanent and rewettable formulas, they offer a wide range of creativity and allow you to ‘sketch’ without picking up a pencil! I’ve been working with the creators of Liquid Pencil and am excited to have a line of new products coming out that make this new medium especially user friendly to Art Journalers. If you love the look of sketching but are unsure of your drawing skills, this class will give you exactly what you need to begin sketching in a journal made with hot press watercolor paper. For the more advanced student the sky’s the limit when you add this to what you already do and I will show you the many different techniques possible with this innovative product! I will be bringing my very own Portrait Sketch Stamps to use in class as well so there is nothing to fear if you don’t have much experience with portraits-you can literally stamp a sketch! As we gather memorabilia from our day trips, we will add them to the covers of our journals to finish off an artistic keepsake that will bring back the once in a lifetime memories of our time in Italy.


Paint brushes-watercolor type

Watercolor brush with a refillable water reservoir

Small set (field type for outside/travel type use) of watercolor paints

Bone folder tool ( for scoring and burnishing)

All other supplies will be supplied by the instructor

Saturday – Arrival in Cortona

-7:00p Welcome to Cortona wine and chocolate tasting at La Saletta.

-8:00p Evening dinner in Cortona at La Locanda nel Loggiato

Sunday – Cortona

-9:00a-12:00p Morning Session

Class kits will be handed out including a signed copy of my book, ‘Art at the Speed of Life’

We will spend the morning session constructing our sketch journals using a binding method from my book, with a twist-we’ll add a pocket or two to the book for the memorabilia we’ll no doubt pick up on our outings. I will introduce my line of Sketch Ink from Derivan Liquid Pencil and we will begin to explore its properties and the tools we will use to apply it. No pencils here! Derivan Liquid Pencil is actual graphite in a paint-like form. My line of Sketch Ink products provides a user-friendly way to apply this medium in a more liquid form. Using both Permanent and re-wettable formulas, we will smudge, erase, lift off, burnish it and more.

-1:00p Lunch

-3:00-6:00p Afternoon Session

Now that everyone has had a chance to play with the Sketch Ink, we will begin our first journal pages, discussing our views on what Art Journaling means to us and how we each find ways or hope to find ways, to incorporate it into our daily lives. This will become the foundation for our pages as we layer various fluid media.

-7:30p Wine tasting

-8:00p Evening dinner

Monday – Cortona

-9:00-12:00p Morning Session

Time to venture outside for inspiration! Taking our journals, Sketching Ink and Brushes, we will begin quick sketching without pencils as we capture the sights and sounds around us.

-1:00p Lunch

-3:00-6:00p Afternoon Session

The afternoon will be spent in the studio or on the grounds, completing our quick sketches and turning them into journal pages.

-7:30p Wine tasting Il Pozzo

-8:00p Evening dinner

Tuesday – Florence

-Day trip to Florence with lunch provided

As we journey to Florence, we will gather memorabilia along the way, stowing it into the pockets in our journals. Quick Liquid Sketches will capture the beauty around us.

-7:30p Wine tasting

-8:00p Evening dinner

Wednesday – Cortona

-9:00-12:00p Morning Session

Time to find a quiet spot to turn yesterdays sketches into journal pages filled with words, color, and texture.

-1:00 Lunch

-3:00-5:30p Afternoon Session

We will now gesso the front and back cover of our journals turning them into leather like covers and then add our memorabilia in true mixed media collage form to create amazing covers for our journals.

-6:00p Tuscan cooking class & dinner

Thursday – Cortona
-Morning visit to outdoor market in Camucia
Fruit, vegetables, people, there will be no end of inspiration and a Quick Liquid Sketch can capture the moment so we can return to it later.

-1:00 Lunch

-3:00-6:00p Afternoon Session

Depending on how many pages you’ve already completed, it may be time to create a second journal. We will stroll outside and find lovely spots to capture the beauty around us and enjoy returning to the moments captured from the mornings outing.

-7:30p Wine Tasting

-8:00p Evening dinner

Friday – Cortona

-9:00-12:00p Morning Session

Adding portraits to our journals will be the finishing touch. I will provide a number of ways to accomplish this that will suite the varied degrees of experience. Even if you’ve never drawn a face before, I’ll show you how to use my Portrait Sketch Stamps to create a one of a kind face. These were designed to work with the Sketch Ink and you will be amazed at how you can personalize the stamped image to make it truly your own.

-1:00p Lunch TBA

-3:00-6:00p Afternoon Session

Now is the time to share our journals within our small group. We are all friends now, having shared this once in a lifetime experience and as we talk about our art, finish up our pages, exchange email addresses and take pictures, we will know we’ve bonded in a special way through our journals and our art.

-7:30p Farewell Wine Tasting Dinner

Saturday – Departure

-Morning Check-out and departure from Cortona.

To find out more or to save your space click HERE

If you are interested in being put on a mailing list for updates about this Art Retreat Experience send an email to

An Artful Gathering Place

Registration is now open for Artful Gathering! This is the perfect way to attend an art retreat, featuring an amazing list of teachers from all over and the best part is you don’t need to pack your suitcase! Through out this very special event, there will be ongoing drawings for prizes, amazing workshops covering a variety of media and techniques. All instructors will be available for student’s questions and commentary from July 16 to August 27, at which time our event will close, and the final Grand Prize Giveaways will be Raffled. So pop on over and see what all the hubbub is all about!

Visual Journalism 101 

After receiving numerous requests, I’m excited to bring back my first online workshop for one last time! Visual Journaling is everywhere now but it can be intimidating to get started. This workshop guides you through 5 lessons to create awesome pages using a variety of mixed media techniques that can also be applied to your other work. With an updated 29 paged down-loadable workbook, and a DVD of all of the video lessons (DVD’s will start to be mailed in August), you will be able to take notes and refer back to the lessons long after the workshop has ended. Almost 300 people have gone through this workshop, several have even had their journal pages published, so don’t miss out on this one last chance to begin Art Journaling today!

I hope you will join us for a fun few weeks of creative inspiration!

Lights, Camera, Action, Create!

One of the things I was busy with last month was traveling to Loveland, CO to shoot a DVD for Interweave.

Good thing you can’t see my knees because they were shaking!

The camera crew were so nice and helpful!

I got to hang out with Fiberartista Paula Phillips who was also shooting that day. We helped calm each other down!

and we realized very quickly how well our workshops complimented each other. Two styles, different mediums and so much information!

Here’s the promo video for Paula’s DVD.

We both had a little inspiration from Johnny:-)

This page shows some of the techniques I share in the DVD, and there are a whole host of things I’ve not done in workshops, all new and exciting along with a debut of my very own PCarriker Sketch Ink from Matisse Derivan!

  My DVD is now available for pre-order!

Looking Back

Sometimes before you go forward, it’s good to take a look back. I was looking through my art journals and it’s fun to see how much my work has changed yet still has a certain look to it. This is my very first official art journal page. I remember making the decision to start journaling and wondering if I’d keep it up.

You can see by the ‘theme’ that I started journaling in the summer, summer of ’07.


These pages are rough around the edges but art journaling isn’t about being ‘perfect’ or precise. It’s about capturing art quickly, experimenting, random thoughts expressed visually.

There is no one way or right way to journal. It can change, it should change, as you  grow and develop your art skills. If you haven’t made the commitment to journal, summer is a great time to start!




Whether we want to be or not, we are all on a journey. Everyone’s journey is different, but as we travel our own we come into contact with many others who may be on a similar path as our own.

As artists we come into contact with other creative people and this enriches all, both the students and the instructors. One of my first live teaching venues was at the Escondido Municiple Art Gallery in Escondido, CA. I was invited to teach by Lisa Bebi and honored to have both her and Renee Richetts in my class. We struck up one of those instant friendships that comes from being of a creative bent and sharing a love of art.

We three went on to dream about teaching a small group workshop together in Paris and as most of you know that dream became reality this past December.

Teaching in a small group setting allows for friendships to form and one on one learning to happen. We three love this type of atmosphere so much that we decided right after Paris to do offer the same type of experience here in the states!

Experience: 3-days of small group art instruction and attention to your learning experience with Lisa Bebi, Pam Carriker and Renée Richetts. You will join us in a relaxing, specious environment near beautiful Lake Hodges, California.

Each day consists of a morning and an afternoon session, divided by a lunch break (lunch is provided). Lisa, Pam and Renée attend all sessions to assure you personal attention and time with each of us. The workshop series’ enrollment is intentionally low, with no more than one instructor for every 3 attendees.

General description of session techniques/content:

  • Lisa Bebi’s unique “paint-over” method with acrylics and other media
  • Pam Carriker’s Busting Out 3-D Portrait
  • Renee Richetts’ signature mixed-media hinged metal books
  • Paper-making using cold-water (one of the most eco-friendly ways to make paper)
  • Art journaling—and you will learn to make the journal itself!

California Registered Nurses: portions of this series have been approved for CEUs by the California BRN. For BRN course description and requirements, please contact Renée Richetts, RN at .

Date and time: June 27, 28 29, 2011 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Lunch included

Location: North San Diego County in Southern California, overlooking Lake Hodges and the San Diego “back country”.

  • 30 minutes from The San Diego International Airport
  • Walk to Lake Hodges from the workshop location
  • 15 minutes from Queen Califia’s Magical Circle sculpture garden by Niki De Saint Phalle, The San Diego Zoo’s Safari Park, Museums, art galleries and wineries

Themes: Personal growth through your art? Healing? Expanding your art career? Making eco-friendly art? You will decide.

We will contact you two weeks prior to the series for your input about the themes you would like to focus on during your time with us.
Pricing and registration:

$595- Workshop series includes 3 lunches, materials and tools. There are no material fees.

  • $200 registration fee reserves your workshop series space. You may register by check drawn on a U.S. bank or by Pay Pal. The remaining $395 is due on or before June 27th.

Need housing as well? $1195/person double occupancy ($1420 single occupancy)-Workshop series, materials, tools 3 lunches, 5 hot buffet-style breakfasts, PLUS 5 nights lodging at the nearby Holiday Inn Express. Summer is high-season in San Diego. We have reserved a limited number of rooms at the current low-season rate. Let us know when you register for the workshop series, if you will also want one of these rooms.


Before June 13th receive a full refund, minus any Pay Pal fees, if applicable.

No refund for cancelations after June 13th unless we are able to fill your vacated spot.

Cancellation by instructors: full refund, including Pay Pal fees

What I’m teaching:

Pursuing Portraits with Pam Carriker: Busting Out

In Visual Art a portrait can be many things from a painting, to a photograph, to a sculpture or any other form of art in which the face is the face is the main theme or focal point. The goal of creating a self portrait is to showcase the unique characteristics of the subject: You.

Creating self portraits is a way of discovering yourself and what makes you the miracle you are. Incorporating meaningful collage and  journaling onto a bust that represents you, allows you to capture who you are at this moment of your life and the things that lead you to this point.
We will create these Self Portrait Busts using a variety of mixed media techniques, including sculpting with plaster strips, painting, collage, and journaling. Bring meaningful scraps of ephemera (paper bits from everyday life) and I will provide additional collage material and everything else.

This bust is large (human head sized) so plan to carry it on the plane if you’re traveling by air. I will provide a bag for this.

And on June 25th, 2011 I’ll also be teaching a one day workshop at the

Escondido Art Gallery-Escondido, CA

Renaissance Women

Instructor: Pam Carriker

A Renaissance Woman is a woman who has broad intellectual interests and is accomplished in areas of both the arts and the sciences.  She sets her own agenda, controls her destiny, and knows the sky’s the limit when it comes to her personal achievement! Join me as we create amazing journal pages reminiscent of the Renaissance Era and discover our own personal mantra for success. Rich texture, vibrant colors and meaningful symbolism will be used to create these masterpieces. I will also teach you my easy Dauber Bottle method for painting faces without fear!

for more information and to register:

I hope some of you will be able to join me on one or both of these journeys~

Art and Soul

I’m getting packed and ready to head off to Art & Soul in Hampton, VA this weekend! This is the kick off for my 2011 teaching and I’m really looking forward to meeting some of you in person! This will be a nice departure from all of the online teaching I’ve been doing.

You can find all of my teaching venues under the ‘Teaching’ tab at the top of the website.

I’ve also been busily writing up proposals for 2012 which include invitations to teach in Italy and Portugal. I’m thrilled at the thought of teaching in such beautiful places. Because my live teaching venues are increasing, I’m not going to be doing as many online workshops, but I am working on something through Creative Workshops that will help bridge that gap a bit. More on that later.

These pages are all from my 10 Minute Journals, created from the instructions in my book, Art at the Speed of Life. I love the size of these journals. So easy to make and always have one on hand.

My podcast with Rice Freeman-Zachery is up on Create Mixed Media if you want to pop over there. There is a lot of awesome information and always something new to check out!

I’ll be checking back in with pictures from Art & Soul in a few days, have a creative week everyone!