20 Minute Club Minutes–Mod Podge All ‘Round


This week’s 20 Minute Sessions were all about collage.

Lots and lots of gluing.

(I just discovered I’ve got Mod Podge ick all over my phone. That’s what you get when you answer your phone when you’re creating.)

I set up a 2nd beta test for my Creative Breakthroughs Collage Tele-class, and I played with the collages I created while I was teaching the first one. (Here’s an example of one on the left.)

This chance to play and re-work is one of my¬† favorite outcomes of this tele-class I’m going to be offering.

During the class, everyone creates on 2-3 pieces at once (to lower the stakes), so even if you don’t finish everything you start during the tele-class itself, you have plenty of fodder for the rest of the week.

Partially done projects are very handy for busy people, because sometimes it’s easier to keep your momentum going when you’re not starting from scratch.

I also revisited a 36″ x 48″ collage I started a while back. I didn’t use the timer, but I broke down what I wanted to do into several different “tasks” and worked on it slowly over the course of the week.

First I traced off my front yellow strips in order to block them out so I could screen print my black background image “behind” them, then I screen printed, and then I layered paper circles on top.

I’m still working on it, but here’s the updated piece so far: (you can see I’m in a certain color frame of mine these days.) Who knows, maybe it’s mostly done.

Networking Quick Fix

I had a slight panic when I realized the new postcards of my digital collages weren’t going to show up on time for a networking event I was attending at the Peter Lik Gallery in Soho.

I needed a quick Plan B.

Hunting around in my stash, I found some cute fat square wooden offcuts from a friend’s woodworking project and decided to turn them into magnets.

I decoupaged like a madwoman all afternoon and then met my niece for dinner beforehand and we quickly glued magnets onto the backs of all the little decoupaged squares right at our table. Nothing like finishing a craft project over drinks!

One waiter even found me a black sharpie to do a few small touch ups. (And they say New Yorkers are jaded.)

They went over really well at the event, and I’m actually thinking they’re a better idea than postcards. Of course, I’ve used up my thick little wooden squares, but maybe I can find some more.


To read more about why I think taking the time to appreciate things about yourself (big and small) is important for keeping your creative momentum going, click here.

Here’s my five for the week:

  1. I appreciate that I’m trying to find some balance, even if it’s eluding me at the moment.
  2. I appreciate that I came up with my magnet idea for the networking event.
  3. I appreciate that I listened to my feelings instead of my head and skipped going to a cool WordPress event on Tuesday evening because it was raining and I didn’t feel like suffering.
  4. I appreciate that I’m still putting one foot in front of the other on some projects that are hard hard hard.
  5. I appreciate that I meditated every day this week even when I felt too busy to do it.

Your Turn

How was your creative week? Lots done? Not so much? Did you get a timer? Still thinking about it? Please share in the comments, I’d love to hear.

Bookmark and Share
Categories : 20 Minute Club, Collage


  1. I appreciate all the things going right for me!
    I appreciate my husband gets up with the kids some mornings.
    I appreciate the traffic my blogs are getting.
    I appreciate exercising my creativity by writing awesome blog posts.
    I appreciate my friends online!
    I appreciate what I’m learning in my watercolor class.

    Just reading about creativity makes me feel connected, even if I choose to do other things than make art.

  2. Joyce Barham says:

    I appreciate my husband helping me by making templates and cutting paper foundations.

    I appreciate the time I have to create.

    I appreciate this group and comments. It helps me to keep the creativity flowing.

    I appreciate that my granddaughter is willing to teach me how to draw this summer. This is something she is good at.She just won an award for her artwork at her school.

    I appreciate that I have all I need on hand to be creative.

    I am going to start working again on a forest collage about 24 x 24. It is an old project, long forgotten. As soon as I clear my design wall I will start. I already have ideas floating around in my head.

    I do need more time to complete more projects. Can anyone give that to me?

  3. sarah bell says:

    Love the Last-Gasp ( is this an expression you use in the US?) Fridge Magnets. Not at all surprised they went down well: I would buy one right away. They look intriguing…

    Yes: I’ve got THREE timers now. One for me , one to post for my creative friend in London who’s struggling, and one for my 11 year old daughter….
    Last Sunday I promised myself a 20 minute tidy of my bedroom. Not wildly creative, but very necessary to have mental space. After four hours I had done half of the house, and felt heaps better. Now I have the space to create! It’s just BEGINNING something that is half my problem. When I think it’s only a 20 minute commitment it seems achievable. Once I’ve been doing whatever it may be for 20 minutes it’s easy to carry on then for hours.

    Thankyou, Sarah!
    Yours, Sarah Bell aka:
    PS Glad you sold some pieces at your exhibition. I always feel pleased if I’m just able to cover my costs…
    It’s always a pleasure to receive your posts. You are very inspiring.

  4. Joni Owens says:

    Hey Sarah!!! You’re doing great – Mod Podge on your phone, but you’ve got to get it up to your elbows, and smeared on the front top legs of your pants and your shirt – then you know you’re made it (lol).

    This week I’ve spent my 20 minutes here and there working on adding more to cards I’m working on for a swap and also chunky pages for another (beach theme – using different pages (handwriting and music) for the sand and gluing beach sand on top of that paper so far. I’ve added a little more (torn brown paper bags painted with watered down white paint) to a 16×20 canvas. And today was spent with my grandson, playing, and watching movies. Looking forward to a weekend of painting and gluing and tearing paper.

  5. Susan Armstrong says:

    This week has been a whirlwind!

    I appreciate that I had the time, this week, to setup my new PC.

    I appreciate that my husband LET me buy said PC.

    I appreciate that now I won’t be spending so much time fixing my old PC and have more time for creating.

    I appreciate my new Epson printer that will print nicely on fabric. (I haven’t tried this out yet)

    I appreciate my Facebook weight loss group and that I’ve been spending 30 min. a day listening to weight loss motivational podcasts.

    Sarah, these 20 minute sessions have been great! Thanks for starting up the group.

  6. Hi Sarah,

    Despite a week of interruptions that could not be avoided (Dr. visit, car to mechanic, groceries between storms) I have had an extremley productive week with a mixed media piece I am working on.
    My work is slow work, slowed further by wet weather (dehumidifiers and A/C can’t trump Mother Nature!) but ultimately very rewarding. I have also been shooting photos as I have worked on the project and posted them to my blog, which in essence has been my *timer*. Doing a step by step keeps you moving! I look forward to more work this weekend and hopefully finishing the piece, which will have been a two week start to finish and for me, that’s amazing. Plus with all the time in studio, there have been other small things worked on, organizing, new ideas brewing, etc—so all in all I had an amazingly productive week, all in little segments of time!


  7. Bobbi says:

    Just a suggestion… I put my phone into a disposable plastic glove and rubber band the opening. I learned this trick the hard way.

    And, as usual, thank you for the inspiration. Every week it’s a mental boost to be able to say, ” See, she can do it!”.

  8. R.M. Koske says:

    Not much creative work this week – I did some knitting which felt good but didn’t require much in the way of creative juices, but that’s pretty much it.

    I did spend a 20 minute session filling the well, though. I sat quietly and looked at the beautiful trees outside my window and journaled a bit. It isn’t at all creating*, and yet it absolutely was because of Sarah that I managed it. When it felt too hard to start, I remembered the description of working on a zipper project and gave myself permission to do it like that and ended up having a good session. It really will (eventually) lead to me recovering my creative ability again. So I think it totally counts.

    Thanks again for the inspiration, Sarah. I’ve used timers in the past, but somehow the way you described it makes it work even better.

    *Journaling absolutely can be creating, but the way I usually do it, it isn’t. “Let’s see, what is it that I need to get done today…” is a typical start. Heh.

Leave a Reply