Saturday, 25 April 2009

Interactive art needs your input - updated

This has been an experiment with texture and colour. I am making a canvas as a gift for Maggi. She wanted the gift to be inspired by literature, music, or film. So many choices....

After being completely stuck, I looked at th
e books on my bookshelf today, and saw one by Sheri Tepper, called 'Beauty'. Inspired, I decided to try and create a piece of art which represented beauty. I took a 6 x 6 inch canvas, and stuck some torn and crumpled deli paper at the top left quarter and bottom right quarter. I added fibre gel medium at the top right quarter, then added fine and coarse garnet gels everywhere else - these are the brown dots you can see. It doesn't look very inspiring, but I'm hoping I've made great texture!

Next, I added a butterfly shaped area of fibre gel medium in the top left quarter, on top of the garnet gel and deli paper. I let it dry a little, then wet and unmounted stamp and stamped into the fibre gel.

The butterfly's not that easy to see on the picture above, but you get a better idea from the close up below.

Once everything had dried, I began to add colour. I added crimson, orange, turquoise and violet. It was too bright, even for me, so I went over the crimson and orange with transparent yellow to tone them down just a little. I put a couple of coats of cobalt turquoise on the butterfly, as I wanted it to be bolder to stand out from such a bright background. It's still way too bright, but I need it to be bold to show through the next step.

I added liming wax to the whole canvas. Liming wax is used on wood to make it look weathered and old. Here, it integrates all the colours and tone s the whole canvas down into a more subtle colour mix. I really like the effect. But, the butterfly doesn't stand out enough.

I've added Treasure Gold to the butterfly. It still didn't stand out enough, and the liming wax had integrated the colour just a tad too much. I took some turquoise pthalo and painted around the butterfly to give more contrast, and added a little at the top right and bottom right corners of the canvas to balance it a little.

I'm really pleased with this so far. It might even be finished. But I am undecided, which is where YOU come in. Do I leave it like this? Or do I add one of the embellishments below????? Please look, and leave a comment with your choice.

Do I add a butterfly stamped onto acetate, with the wings bent up so it looks as if it has just landed on the canvas?

Do I add a spirit of the forest?

Or a green man?

Or a bronze plaque inscribed with script? (this was the embellishment I had planned to use at the outset)

Or, can you think of an embellishment which would look even better on this canvas?

Please let me know which version you prefer, and why. If you have a different idea, please suggest it.

I'm looking forward to reading your thoughts.


Those of you who know me won't be surprised to find I did something completely different to the trial pieces above. I didn't look at the canvas for 15 hours, and I read all your comments. By the way, putting the butterfly transpaency was the first thing I did when I made it - and
it looked awful LOL.

The comments which made the most impact on me were the ones about odd numbers and adding more turquoise pthalo (a girl can never have too much turquoise in her life!). And somebody mentioned size. And somebody mentioned di
mension, lifting things off the canvas. When I looked at my assorted embellishments I realised that half the problem was that they were too large for the canvas.

So, I made some smaller gold butterfly themed embellishments. I tried them on the canvas and they didn't work either.

Eventually, I fished out a tiny butterfly mould, and used some air dry clay to make two small butterflies. I painted them and added Treasure Gold, and adhered them onto the canvas with heavy gel. I painted around them. I think it's FINISHED!!!!

Thank you all for your commen
ts, ideas, and input.

Canvas for Fiona

I made a canvas for Fiona's birthday. I found a square canvas with sloping sides, and used a small palette knife to apply regular gel medium all over to add texture. I think this is the original purpose gel medium was designed for! I also used the gel to adhere and embed the main focal point of the canvas - a paper casting of a rubber stamp.

Once the gel had dried, I began adding very thin layers of fluid acrylic paint in Paynes Grey, and Turquois (pthalo) plus a little Cobalt Turquoise (that was a mistake, it's not transparent enough!). I built up and added the paint layers, then added some violet around the bottom of the sides.

I added some gold oil pastel to the high points of the texture, then added 2 more layers of paint. The gold didn't show through enough, so I touched the high points with Treasure Gold to highlight them. It was difficult to get a good image of this canvas. The image above was scanned and shows the detail well, the image below is a photograph which shows the colour much more accurately but doesn't show the detail so well!

Anyway, Happy Birthday Fiona!

Monday, 20 April 2009

Fantasy film canvas

Apologies in advance for the picture quality - this stuff isn't easy to get good pictures of! I am hosting a fantasy film swap on CC Swaps. We each made an 'item of choice' for our partner. I decided to try making a fantasy film canvas, and this is the result:

I fused several layers of the palest colour of fantasy film onmto the canvas, wrapping it arouind the edges and back, and using an iron to shrink and fuse. I took 2 more layers of the same colour and inked up a large stamp (Stamp Camp) with Stazon, then laid the fantasy film on top, covered with some paper (just to protect the iron) and fused the layers together on the sytamp. I peeled the image off the stamp, trimmed it, and decided the body of the angel needed t stand out a little more. I painted a layer of gold paint on the back, then fused it onto the canvas with the iron.

I hope my swap partner likes it!

Saturday, 18 April 2009

Angelina ATC

I am making some ATCs without paper for a swap on CC Swaps. I decided to use a range of fantasy film and angelina fibre colours. I inked up a leaf and a flower stamp with black Stazon, then laid 2 layers of fantasy film/fusible film/angelina film on top, a layer of silicone paper on top of that, and ironed for a few seconds on the silk setting of my dry iron to use the layers together and heat set the image onto the film. I cut around the images and found myself the pleased owner of some very shimmery flowers and leaves.

I cut some fantasy film out, and layered 2 pieces with a thin layer of angelina fibres between them. I laid the silicone paper back on top, and ironed it all together to fuse it into one sheet. I ran the sheet through my Wizard, using the ATC die cutter. Finally, I laid my leaves and flowers onto the ATC shapes, put the silicone paper back on top, and gave another few seconds with the iron to fuse the leaves and flowers onto the ATC background.

I like the way the angelina fibres give texture to the background, while the different colours of fantasy film stand out from each other.

Friday, 10 April 2009

Fantasy canvas

Jean's theme for this Girl of the Month gift was 'fantasy'. I did think about making something using fantasy film, but decided to paint a canvas instead! This was one big learning curve of experimentation for me - and the reason it fits the fantasy theme is that I have fantasized about painting a textured rich canvas that I like!

The canvas is about 7 inches by 9.5 inches. I layered torn book pages onto the canvas, then a wash of watered down gesso, and a quick coat of Opals Dust (this gives deep down sparkle at some angles). I then added many coats of fluid acrylics and gel mediums.

I added texture to the background by stamping a texture stamp into one layer of half dry gel medium, and then added the focal points by stamping into gel medium and highlighting it with Treasure Gold (yes, I think I do use this stuff on everything I make!). The colour reminds me of the deep ocean, and the canvas has a deep rich polish. I'm really pleased with this and may make something like it for my own wall!!!

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Friendly plastic art

I am taking part in a swap where I had to make something incorporating Friendly Plastic, and this is what my partner will be getting:

I used a Krafty Lady mould and lots of small pieces of Friendly Plastic left over from other projects. I put them all in the mould, heated with a heat gun, dipped my fingers in cold water and pushed the plastic into all the nooks and crannies in the mould. I didn't fill the mould - the piece is about 1/8th of an inch thick all over. Once it had cooled, I pushed it out of the mould and gave it a thorough rubbing with Treasure Gold, then set about making the background to set it off.

I took a 5 inch by 7 inch canvas, and covered it with scraps of paper form an old Welsh language book. I gave this a thin coat of Titan Buff fluid acrylic, then several very thin coats each of 3 or 4 colours of fluid acrylic - paynes grey, transparent orange and yellow and a crimson.

I took a fleur-de-lys stencil and a gold oil pastel crayon, and stencilled half motifs down each side before giving the canvas a final coat of the crimson paint. The canvas probably has about 20 coats of paint on it, and this gives a lovely rich polished sheen. I stuck the Friendly Plastic body on using extra heavy gel medium.

House chunky book

I decided I liked the covers enough not to do any more to them, so I just named my house the 'House of Fun' - because fun is what I get from making and receiving art. I punched four holes in each page and tied them to each other using a fancy white yarn, to make a concertina style book.

Here are half of the fronts of the pages:

and here are the rest:

Here are half the backs:

and here are the rest:

The book looks lovely on my art shelf. You can see the post about my own page for this book here.



Please note that I assert myself as the creator of all art on this site (unless I credit another artist) and retain copyright of all artwork posted on this site