What’s your creative focus?

I absolutely LOVE being creative, and I absolutely LOVE DIY projects.  My husband loves budget friendly projects, so I am learning to be even more creative and love them myself!  I’m so super proud of myself when I can make something beautiful for less than $10.00.  Doing this takes incredible focus, but I am learning every day.  Staying on task is sometimes the most difficult part of my day!

Do you struggle to stay on task, too?  Do you need motivation sometimes?  Maybe you need something to help remind you to stay on task when pesky (or cute – if they’re your kids!) distractions come calling? Maybe you have a task you really, really want to accomplish, but you keep getting pulled away and you can’t figure out why.  That keeps happening to me, too.

Actually, it happens. EVERY. DAY.

So of course, I found a really cute way to make a friendly reminder for myself.  It isn’t a complete fix-all, but it sure does help bring things into perspective.  It also serves as a reminder when I find myself distracted by all the ‘shiny objects’ – aka distractions – that seem to call my name a bajillion times a day!

As I mentioned in my FOCUS and Beware of S.O.S. (Shiny Object Syndrome!) post, I made this really cute budget DIY canvas art motivational quote (‘FOCUS: Follow One Course Until Successful’) for my office area to help keep me focused when I am being pulled in a million different directions.  Added bonus:  it fits with my beach theme in the front room (which is the room we split between my office area and the game system/tv room for the kids.  We only moved into this house a couple of months ago, so it is definitely a work in progress I will share with you along the way. 🙂  I hope sharing my progress will help me stay accountable and help me continue to move forward with all of my ideas!

If I am saying one thing repeatedly in our busy house it is “FOCUS!”.  This has become my unofficial mantra it seems. I decided what better to put on my wall as motivation and a friendly reminder, than my daily mantra?


I did not want something flat and plain, so I opted for some 3D media to make it more exciting.  To get ideas, I took a field trip to Michaels craft store to see what I could find.  I chose cute wooden letters for the word “Focus”, a 16 x 20 canvas (they had one of their amazing door-buster sales on a multi-pack for $5!), & some white pearl, teal, and ice blue metallic paint.  I used a ton of coupons and at the end of this, I spent less than $10.00 on the project!  At home, I found a print of a seahorse from the Dollar Tree, and of course, Mod Podge. 

Budget DIY Canvas Art Project
Canvas, Wooden letters, and paint used for the project


Budget DIY Canvas Art Project
These are the paints I used for this project


Budget DIY Canvas Art Project
Wooden letters – painted with the white pearl paint

I painted the wooden letters with the white pearl paint so they would stand out.   This way they’ll match the rest of the words I will paint on the canvas once the background color is finished.

Budget DIY Canvas Art Project

I mixed all 3 colors together on a palette to come up with my own beautiful ‘seawater-ish’ color for the background of the canvas.  I had to do this a couple of times because this took more paint than I originally anticipated when I first mixed the paint.  The canvas was thirsty! 😉

Once I mixed enough paint, I applied it to the canvas with even, vertical brush strokes.  I gave it a few coats, letting the paint dry in between just to make sure it was even.  Okay, probably 3 or 4 coats even though 2 was enough – my OCD kicked in and I couldn’t get it right.  First, too many brush strokes showed and I thought it was uneven (it wasn’t!), and then I wasn’t sure it was all covered evenly and had lumps.

I know, I know, it’s art, Grandi, the whole purpose is it isn’t supposed to be perfect!


Budget DIY Canvas Art Project

Once the paint dried and I was (finally!) satisfied with the look of it, I arranged the wooden letters on the canvas vertically and figured out the spacing before I glued them down.  I used the hot glue gun, so once the letters were glued down there would be no turning back!

Budget DIY Canvas Art Project

“FOCUS” is an acronym for “Follow One Course Until Successful” to motivate myself.  It helps me stay focused and keep distractions to a minimum – or at least helps us get back on track – or stay on track – when distractions come along.  I painted the words with the white pearl paint I am also using on the wooden letters. This way they will flow nicely and it will be easy to read.  Once the paint was dry on the words, I cut out the sea horse and used Mod Podge on the back to attach it to the canvas.   Then I covered the whole canvas in a couple of coats of Mod Podge to seal it.  That gave it a nice shine when the light hit it, too.

Budget DIY Canvas Art Project
Here’s the finished DIY Focus art project hanging on my wall next to my desk.

Budget DIY Canvas Art Project

Here is the art on my wall.  You can see it literally is right next to my writing desk (my laptop screen is on the bottom of the picture!)! Great place for a much needed reminder!

What’s your creative focus?  What distractions do you struggle with?  How do you manage them right now?  Let me know what works for you and how you can become better with distractions when they show themselves!  I know I am looking for ways to become better every day!  Are you?  🙂

Budget DIY Canvas Art Project Supply List:

  1.  Deco Art Metallics Paint in colors to match your theme (I chose White Pearl, Teal, Ice Blue)
  2. paintbrushes: one wide for canvas background, one narrow or chiseled for lettering
  3. 16 x 20 canvas
  4. Mod Podge
  5. Wooden Letters: F,O,C,U,S
  6. Any print that goes with your theme (mine was a seahorse to match our beach/ocean theme in the room)
  7. scissor (to cut out your print)
  8. Hot glue gun and hot glue sticks (for wooden letters)


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