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In the Studio This Week – UFOs and A Free Journal for You

In the studio this week, I spent time working on three UFOs. What are UFOs, you ask? Well, I’m not talking about Unidentified Flying Objects, I’m talking about those pieces of art that linger unfinished as an UnFinished Object. I finished the collage portrait and worked on some earlier paintings that were left unfinished.  I also came up with a free journal to help with self-confidence, a trait many creatives need to develop. Feel free to opt-in to receive this journal.

Girl With Owl

This was done in a collage style unfamiliar to me. I chose to collage everything on the original drawing except the girl’s face and hands. Then I applied texture paste and used stencils to add texture to the collage areas. I was pretty sure I took a picture of this step but couldn’t find it. The process was messy, and the paste ended up on areas I didn’t want to have covered. The next step was acrylic paint.

Painting of a girl with an owl on her shoulder using acrylic paint over collage paper

The first application of acrylics was difficult to manage with the texture paste. I felt like the paint was fighting me – not a good feeling. I ended up going over with more texture paste to rework the areas that were fighting me, especially the owl’s chest and wing and the girl’s hair.

Mixed media painting of a girl with an owl on her shoulder using collage, texture paste, and acrylic paint.

I ended up finishing with oil paint and reworked some of the shadow areas. I felt just okay about this.

Mixed media painting of a girl with an owl on her shoulder using collage, texture paste, acrylic paint, and oil paint.

Mountain Scene

Since I had the oil paint out, I went back to the mountains scene I’d painted the previous week to add depth with the oil paint. This is what it looked like at the end of the previous week:

Mountain Scene painted on paper with stencils and spray paint.

I focused primarily on the mountains in the background and the rocks in the foreground. I did add some luminosity to the lake using cool, transparent colors and a Galkyd medium. I think the oils really did add more dimension to this painting.

Monster Portrait

I had painted this portrait much earlier in The Mastery Program and decided to use some oil paint to soften and add depth. The portrait was called a Monster Portrait by The Mastery Program instructor as you smear on paint and then subtract a portrait form resulting in something like the following:

Acrylic portrrait at the subtractive stage

When I had finished this lesson previously, I felt pretty good about it but as I kept looking at the portrait, it seemed too confrontational.

Posrtrait of a yound woman in a bold style
Monster portrait

I worked on the skin tones, the eyes, and the background. This is where I am now. I think the eyes need more work, but I am pleased so far.


I’m beginning to see the value added by using oils on top of acrylic paints. I have so many paintings I can go back and rework to bring them further along. I have always liked collage and find it quite meditative; the ripping and gluing process is mesmerizing. I didn’t particularly like using the texture paste, but I did learn something. I think my style is more towards portraits and animals or birds, rather than landscape. What do you think?

Free Journal

If you’re looking for a new practice to work on self-confidence, provide your email and I will send you a self-confidence journal to use. This is a weekly journal that can be printed out fresh each week or as needed. I’m a huge believer in journaling and find people get intimidated by the thought and don’t know where to start. This journal can help with daily prompts to record accomplishments and gratitude moments.

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