November 2018 - Gateway to get you started? - inspiration from Riikka

Hi there! I’m so honored to be asked to be a small part of this project! My name is Riikka Kovasin and I’m Finnish mixed media crafter. I keep a blog called “Paperiliitin” which means paperclip in Finnish. My biggest joy is to have my fingers in different paints and just create for the sake of creating.

For this first project I started to think the theme of doors and gateways in a couple of ways. As this is my first project for this project, I wanted it to be a gateway of some sort.

First I thought about doing the cover of the album but then came to think something else completely. As the project is about creating daily, a big project like an altered cover may not be the thing. Also, if you are just starting the journey of creating or want to take a part of something new, you might not have a huge stash of different mediums. And creating something for yourself shouldn’t be about the mediums! They do make me happy, but if you are new to the came, you might not have gesso and gel medium, but what you do have is the burning desire to do something, create and try things out. And what you probably have is paper and a pencil.

So, my project is a gateway also to creating. A gateway away from the thought that you need to have a lot of supplies in order to make something. This page may not be the most beautiful one, but you can easily replicate it and take in further. It’s a gateway to get you started.

What I did here is a collection of rubbings or frottages. I took some paper and a soft pencil with me when I left for work and stopped here and there to rub the texture of the bark, the pavement, the gutter into the paper using the pencil. I soon realized that the built textures with geometrical patterns seemed to be more intriguing than the natural, loose ones. With this technique you can create an endless supply of patterns and be inspired by the textures in different ways.

When I then got home, I cut and tore the pieces of frottage papers into smaller pieces and used a plain paper glue to attach them to the page. No fancy mediums, just something you probably have at home. Like I said, a gateway to creating. You can even create a rubbing each day, just explore the textures! After I’d adhere the pieces to the page, I then sketched a quick doorway on top using the same pencil I had used in the rubbing. You can still see some of the textures there, but other are hidden. Also, maybe a gateway to not being afraid to cover things up with something else? I then finished the page with some lovely washi tape and text stickers.

I also thought about the doors opening and closing and while I was creating the doorway, drawing it, I had some appropriate music playing. For once it wasn’t Turisas, my favorite band, but something else from Finland. I listened to “Valse Triste” from Jean Sibelius. It has completely different doors in it. It was first composed to a play called “Kuolema” (Death) but then re-written later. You can read the background story in Wikipedia ( if you like, but maybe rather first listen it without the background and see what you hear? Following the same theme, if you like more visual keys, maybe try out googling a Finnish painter Hugo Simberg and maybe a small painting called “Kuoleman puutarha” (Garden of Death).

 So, my first project is not heavy on mixed media, but that wasn’t my goal either. It’s a way to make a habit, to establish a new routine, also for myself. To take that five or ten minutes a day and create something for no particular reason. Or maybe for the best reason of them all - just because it makes me happy!


  1. Wonderfully inspirational Riikka. I love the idea of doing rubbing! Thanks. Hugs xx

  2. Love the simplicity of your art daily project, it speaks volumes to remind us to appreciate the world around us in the present moment instead of focusing on “not having” the “best” tools. Our creativity is born in our imagination which is the best tool each of us is born with, that is the true gateway into creating beautiful works of art.

  3. Wow, what a great idea. The rubbings give wonderful texture to your page, and such an easy thing to do.


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