Saturday, 28 June 2014

Work in progress reaches completion (maybe): with DecoArt

So a few days ago I showed you a pretty large canvas i had started while sitting in my friends back yard chatting and getting my back burned to a cinder in the sun....
neither of us had a clue what we were going to make, we just picked up some brushes and paints and sort of just "started"... I was using DecoArt media fluid acrylics. They have a wonderful high percentage of pure pigment so far less likely to get that muddy look mixed paints can get. i started by painting a line of cobalt blue to the top and adding water so it would run down the canvas. then i turned my canvas upside down and did the same withe green. i then built up colours in the same way, with a lot of water.
I think the sun put me in a rather dreamy frame of mind and I went uncharacteristically floral and pastel.  but at one point, I went a step tp far and it went from quite attractive to a bit of a mess. I dont have photos of the mess as i persevered for a little bit and rescued it. though it is far from its original soft dusky colour palette.
I had my Stampendous mixed media stamps and stencils with me so i used some DecoArt texture sand paste through the "sequin waste" stencil and formed my tall flowers (they represent a cross between lupins and delphiniums lol) but then time caught up and it was time to pack up.

anywho, I brought it home (here it is with my cat scrutinising it)...

...and tried to keep going with it as i am bad for just "giving up" and tossing projects to one side if they dont go well in the first hour lol.
here it is with a little additional detail.
It was at this point I blogged it and facebooked it and asked what folks thought i could put as the main focus.
Various opinions were put forward. some thinking it should be left as is as it didnt need a focal point.
My friend, Astrid, came over to my place on Monday and instantly put her hand in the area that i felt needed the focal point and she too said that there needed to be one and it needed to be in that area. so, as that had been my gut feeling too, i set about adding some focus with a "foreground presence", to stand out fro the soft hazy background.
I added a large dragonfly. then decided to add two more (as it somehow felt like the right thing to do).


I used Decoart "interference" acrylics on the dragonfly wings. its so hard to show you this in a photo, but tilting it to the light can show the wonderful lustre of the interference, and tilting it back shows just the original painting. the interference had a beautiful blue colour and a green colour that both seemed to be very "insect" appropriate. I have tried to get a photo but its not doing the lustre effect any justice at all. it is more like a Lalique piece of glass in real life. very effective for a dragonfly.

So I think its finished now. maybe. no doubt i will pick it up a few more times and dabble.
Z x
#decoart

Friday, 27 June 2014

Stampendous/DecoArt Blog hop Post 3


Well its the final day for this fantastic blog hop full of mixed media. And quite a grand finale it is.  I must take time to get round all the posts as i have been catching glimpses of the work being made over the last two or three weeks, and it is all looking pretty cool.
My post is my 2nd ever journal page and a wee tutorial on creating your own sequin waste stamp "Dandelion clocks".
When I made my first journal page, I had used this stamp rather randomly and when i was looking back at the page, the dots just sort of reminded me of a dandelion clock behind my hummingbird.
So I decided to experiment and see if i could make dandelion clocks using the stamp.
I made this page to match up with my hummingbird page.
To show you the steps i have kept my backgrounds reasonably simple and dark to show up the white paint. i just dripped a few drops of my paints right on to the card and used a brayer to spread the paints across the whole surface.

So get your chosen background and the round sequin waste stamp. load your stamp (in your preferred method) with white paint. now make an imprint on your background.

Repeat till you have the number of dandelion heads you want.
 Now using a thin brush and some black acrylic paint, make a black dot in the middle of the white sequin waste dots. Still using a very fine brush, add the little lines that give the fake seed head look. I started with the 4 main points of a clock so i didnt end up with my little lines all over the place. then i filled in the gaps.

Once the paint is dry, use chalk pastels or something similar, to outline the dandelion heads. smear it in a circular motion with your fingers.


now start building up the layers on your stalks and the place where the stalk meets the seed head.
Add some leaves and other stencilling or stamping as required.  





Thursday, 26 June 2014

Stampendous/DecoArt Blog hop post 2.

On Tuesday I showed you this cool video on how to make fab backgrounds using the Stampendous Creative Palette...  and I showed you one way to use them as a background for a journal page. This little canvas was made, using more of my home made backgrounds. I made my backgrounds using a mix of DecoArt Media Fluid acrylics, Traditions acrylics and Americana acrylics (sometimes I mixed them together just to see what worked with what.)


I tore some of the backgrounds in to strips, added some extra stamping with the Stampendous "Sheet music" stamp and the " musical definitions" stamp. Then I stuck them to my canvas in rows for an even more varied look.  I then used DecoArt modelling (texture) paste through a Stampendous "treble clef" stencil. while it was still wet I added some Fran-tage embossing powders and used the heatgun. I also added more of the texture to the corners. when it had dried I used the Stampendous Music background stamp on the texture. I glued on some Fran-tage elements (in this instance, little mica chips in pretty colours.)

I then cut a heart from another of my preprepared backgrounds and stamped the music on to it using white paint. I used DecoArt media fluid acrylic paint as it has a super high amount of pure pigment,
I gave the whole thing a coat of the new DecoArt  Mixed Media "Clear Crackle Glaze".

When it had dried a painted over it with some transparent quinacridone gold, left it for a few seconds then wiped it all off again with a damp cloth. The paint stayed in the cracks. :)
last but not least, with a clean damp cloth, I applied DecoArt metallic lustres to the edges of the canvas. 

Thanks for visiting and enjoy the rest of the blog hop
Z x

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Stampendous/DecoArt Blog hop post 1


I'm in a mixed media frenzy: Stampendous and DecoArt have come together to do a fantastic blog hop full of mixed media loveliness.
We have been using an amazing range of paints and mediums from DecoArt along with the wonderful  "Studio Multi Media" cling rubber stamp packs, Fran-tage embossing powders and Elements and the Creative Palette from Stampendous.
When the supplies arrived with me, I immediately watched the cool youtube video Stampendos have provided on how to use the "Creative Palette".

   
Next step was to try it out and make some backgrounds of my own.... 
I set some aside for future projects and then set about using one to make my first ever journal page.
I had been watching the video of Prof Wangari Maathai (she won the nobel peace prize in 2004)  telling the story of the little hummingbird. And I was inspired by it. My page was made to remind me of that inspiration and to remind me that I can only try my best and that must be enough.it may be insignificant but it is important to try. Imagine if we all put our minds to the same problem and did our best!!!!
 I selected one of my backgrounds and decorated it further with more of the stamps and stencils, using more acrylic paints. I hand painted on some grass and plant life then printed off a hummingbird image. I used more paints and some pastels to highlight the hummingbird then printed off my quote and glued it on too. I coated the whole page with DecoArt multi-purpose sealer.  

And for your interest, here is the youtube link to the story...
 

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Work in progress....

I went to a craft friends house for the day on Thursday and for some reason, we decided to do a very large canvas each. with no plan and lots of spontaneity. the size overwhelmed me if I am honest and the facts that its not a journal page so adding a quote isnt really a sensible option. Van Gough and Di Vinci didn't rely on quotes to fill the blank spaces lol.
So the first image here (with Pi my cat giving her critique) is how it looked after my afternoon with Sara. I dont know how long we were at it. an hour or something. the rest of the time was chatting and eating lunch lol.
And here it is now with some additional detail.

Now all I have to do is think of what the main central image is going to be to fill that gap! I am slightly obsessed with hummingbirds at the moment so i suspect it might be one of those or some other bird. (I cant guarantee that intending to paint a hummingbird, will actually result in anything similar to a hummingbird. but if it looks in the least bird like I will be pleased.

so what else could i use to fill the large central void.... what do you think?

(I used mostly DecoArt Media fluid acrylics and other mediums from the "media"  range.)

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Simple altered chest box: for a commission.


Well it is not super clever or different or informative; but as I have not blogged much in the last few weeks (lots to come next week though) then I thought I would share this anyway.
It was made using
DecoArt Chalky Finish paints,
DecoArt napkin Decou-page glue,
DecoArt One-step crackle
Decoart americana acrylics.
Some treasure gold
And a single napkin.




Saturday, 24 May 2014

Colour on my mind. canvas.


I am still thinking of male appropriate projects at the moment.  Last time I made a very functional little "faux leather" notebook for my father in law. But this time I am going for a bit of colour and a purely decorative item.

My canvas was firstly painted with acrylic paints. I then stamped on to tissue paper (the kind you wrap crockery and gifts in, not the kind you blow your nose on). I cut out the stamped images and words (both are from Tim Holtz stamp sets), and glued them in to place using decoupage glue.

I added remnant rubs, some craft tape, a bit of film strip ephemera and a Tim Holtz alterations die cut. I also spelled out the word "HIM" using die cut letters and attached them to the film strip ephemera.

I then coated it in a crackle varnish. let it dry (and crackle) then rubbed in (and wiped off) some more acrylic paint.

That's it really. a bit of colourful fun with a male theme.

Friday, 23 May 2014

Faux leather notbook.

 
With fathers day imminent I find myself focusing on 'stuff for men', or with a male theme, at the moment.

I am lucky in that most of the men in my life are in touch with their arty sensitive side so i can make them almost anything (well maybe not something festooned with flowers). But I do have a difficult to make for, father in law. for him, it needs to have a purpose, be useful, functional. So I have made this little note book. It still satisfies my need to make new things look old but it is under stated and most importantly, it has a purpose.
 I made the cover using so Tim Holtz kraft-core paper. I wanted a "faux leather" look so I chose a nice leathery tan brown sheet. I also used a gorgeous new spellbinders embossing folder 3D M-Bossabilities Folder, Mediterranean Medallion (I love this folder SO much.)

I cut the kraft core sheet to size then crumpled it up to make folds and wrinkles. I straitened it all back out and gave it a light sand with sandpaper. Then I ironed it back out flat and put it through the embossing machine (I used a sizzix big shot so had to work out what combo of plates and mats would work.) once i had embossed the front and back cover of my book (with a little gap for a spine), i sanded it again so the embossing stood out more. To make it look like old polished leather, it needed some colour variations and  a slight shine so I added a few blotches of  "Vintage photo distress stains" and then i gave my cover a coat of  DecoArt satin finished multi surface sealer. (any varnish, sealer or decoupage sealer type finish will do).

 To bring the pattern out more I used treasure gold. I want to take this chance to say, I have been buying treasure gold from art shops for over 10 years. they are gilding wax polishes that most art shops have been stocking for many many years. They are available in lots of highstreet and online art and craft shops too and they are NOT made by PaperArtsy. PaperArtsy started stocking them more recently but they do not own them or make them. I dont know why they are sometimes advertised as "paperartsy treasure golds" it is a little misleading.
Anyway I digress... I used my finger to gently rub over the raised bits of the embossing.
I cut out an image from Tim Holtz paper stash "laboratorie" and put an ornamental plate over it to attach to the centre of the book. I added a Remnant rub from the life quotes pack.
For the inside, I simply stitched some folded papers together. before i glued it in to the cover, I glued a bit of ribbon on to the inside of the spin, to be used as a page marker. i then glued my note book signature in by using the outside pages. I did not glue it to the spine. the book opens and closes better if its not attached to the cover's spine.


I used some pages from an old book to cover the glued pages up just to give it a nice finished off look and add a bit of interest. I added a few little page tabs too, decorated with chit chat stickers.

And that's my little notebook.