Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A Mini Tutorial

Okay, I made another collage--

And a couple of you commented on my last post that you wanted to see a tutorial on how I paint my papers.  I wasn't quite sure on how I was going to do this, because when I paint these papers, it's very organic.  I think that's why I enjoy it, because I don't think about it--I just do it, which is very unlike me-- I always tend to overthink everything.  Probably the reason why I don't worry about the outcome is because it is just paper and it is for the most part, just experimenting.  So I decided to  to do a couple of papers , and all of us will see how they turn out together.
I usually just paint the papers on this heavy cardstock that I picked up at Office Max.  It's a buff color, but you can do it on any durable paper.  I like this paper, because it doesn't really absorb the color and I can use alot of water on it without weakening it.  It will curl, but if you're using it for collage, it doesn't matter. Here's one finished paper--

But I'll back up from the beginning--there's basically 5 layers on this one.  First I stamped images on the paper.  I used a Staz On ink  pad, because it's water resistant,  and then I applied an acrylic wash over it--

I just used a craft paint for this layer, but for the next step, I used Golden fluid acrylics---I've just discovered recently that this makes a BIG difference when I wanted vibrant collage papers

I put down three different colors and then used a wide palette knife (or you could use a credit card) to spread the paint around, but try not to blend it together too much. In this case, I used  gold, titan buff, and sap green, but it can be as many colors as you want.  When it was almost dry, I put on a little purple on in spots and dragged my palette knife through it.  And then after that I just splattered some paint on it.

The only thing about this paper, is that it took a little bit of time, but I have another paper also that I did and this took all of about a minute--

Don't you love this one--I just spread the same 4 colors around with a pallette knife.  This is why I like this paper-- because the paint will just sit on top of the paper and you can move it around.

And another thing I wanted to show you--
I'm sure alot of you know about textured, paintable wall paper.  I love it--it always comes in a cream color and you can get it where ever they sell wallpaper.  You can't mess up on it.  You apply your paint (usually watered down), and then wipe it off and the color  will seep down into the texture, and you can keep adding colors to it, until you like the result--

I used it here under the cup to give the appearance of a table--

I hope this little tutuorial helped some of you, and if you have any questions, let me know.  Whenever I find new techniques or fun ones, I'll always post them!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Making Pictures With My Papers

Can I tell you how much I love taking my papers and making pictures out of them--

I think that painting the papers are as much fun as making the pictures too!

On the bottom of this one, I applied the Golden's molding paste over a stencil--it's so easy and it's a great result--

And how lucky am I?-- I found another oversized song book at a garage sale yesterday.  This time it's 400 pages and it was only  $1.00!

In all the years I've been going to these sales, I've never found these type of books.  This is the second time in a week now that I found one--that's the way it usually goes.  And linens and doilies--you can never have enough.  I have no idea what I'll do with all of these that I'm always picking up, but I have a weakness for them--

Hey, these were 25 cents each.  How can you possibly turn that down?!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Fun With Bob

So every year my daughter and son-in-law go away on vacation for about a week or so.  And every year Bob comes to our house to stay.  He loves us, but by the end of the day , he wants to go home.  So when we watch him , it's always been a bit traumatic for him.  Last year it got to the point that he couldn't keep anything down, even water.  So after a $200 vet bill, the diagnosis was basically he was sick due to anxiety.  So this year a friend is staying at my daughter's house so Bob can be in his own home. But he's left alone alot, so we went over a couple of times this week to take him out.

A few days ago, the weather was nice and sunny, so we took him to the beach, or as I said in my other post--the real name being Presque Isle--

And he was very excited to get going.  Do you notice that everytime you see him that he has a shirt on?  Well that's because my daughter dresses him everyday.  He has quite the wardrobe--even pajamas.  Now when he has nothing on, it looks like he's exposing himself--poor thing--he has no choice in the matter.  So anyway, off we went on our walk--

We started out on the bike trail.

And we were greeted by one of the residents' there.

After walking for a while, we decided to head to one of the beaches--

Bob was thinking of going for a swim, but decided against it--who am  I  kidding?--he's afraid of the water!

We may not have the white sand or clear blue water, but it's a great way to  spend your day.  And if it wasn't on the other side of town, I know that I would be going there everyday.  I love the bike trail.

And I always think it's so neat to see these natural hearts on everyone's blogs, and I think---how do they find these?!  Well, all you have to do is look--they're everywhere!

Wow, look at this--someone drew a heart in the sand ; )

So then it was time to take Bob back home.  I had to change his shirt though--he got it a little dirty.

His face pretty much tells the story--we were leaving : ( 
I almost don't like doing this, because he's so sad when  we leave.

I also wanted to thank Sanda at Sanda's Art Blog  for posting this you tube video.  She got it from Tam's blog, and the video is by Jan Phillips. The description of the video is--In case you forget why it's important to create.  Thank you Jan for a beautiful video!!

I also want to mention that Sanda's having a giveaway on her blog.  You have until April 30 so there's still time--if you click on her blog name, it will take you to that  link.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Cigar Box Love

I used up all of my papers, and my cigar boxes, except for one  lid.  Here's what I did on the second one--

I made a shadow box!  I made all ofthe collage items to put into it--

I like to think of these as puzzle pieces. I arrange and rearrange them until they just "fit" into place--you know, just like putting a puzzle together.  And I love when I find just the right touch to add--

This was from a necklace that I had, and I just colored it with alcohol inks. I love alcohol inks--they're great for adding color to metal or glass, or anything for that matter.

And as for the other cigar box--I took my own advice. I'm using  it for storage for my neocolor crayons.  One reason being,  is that they're not that cheap, and I want to take care of them.  The other reason is that I've become very attached to these little guys. I love my crayons!

And also, I know I don't say this enough, but I just want to thank everyone for visiting me and for  all of your comments!  Plus, I want to thank you for sharing your art with me--I've learned so much in the last few months--I can't believe it.  I think it's great that we can share and learn from each other--so thanks guys!

Monday, April 19, 2010

My Weekend

The weekend here was pretty drab--cold and rainy, but I had a good one.  Yesterday I played around in my room and on Saturday I went to the local antique show that  we  have twice a year here. I actually didn't have to travel miles to go to a good antique show--it was just right across town. 

I love going to these antique shows.  It's just a whole different world.  Everything here is someone's history.  Some talented lady took the time to hand crochet  these doilies and placemats--

Someone used to wear this jewelry, and all of these buttons (you can never have too many buttons) came off of someone's shirt or whatever.

And how about these--

These are metal interlocking stencils.  I don't know if I'll use them as stencils or just use the stencils themselves as collage items--whole box of them for $2.00.

There  was  also a vendor who had 4 or 5 old suitcases just filled to the brim with old cards, postcards, photos, booklets--you name it. If I looked though them all, I'd still be there.  I found these there--

He told me that he thought that they were given away in cigarette packs. They're famous people from way back when--I love them!  Also these--

I always feel a little sad when I see family photos just thrown in a big pile of stuff for sale.  They should be with the family they came from in a photo album or frame or if anything , just a box of other family photos.  I couldn't resist getting it--I love this photo! And check out the postcard.  This person had so much to write, that he started on the front and continued on the back. It's all written in a different language--I think German, but I have no idea.

One of my favorite purchases--

It's a 160 page song book from 1893, and it's the size of  regular sheet music.  Look how perfectly aged these pages are--I couldn't have done it better myself.  I paid $5.00 for it, and I probably would have paid more.

And of course, I was on the look-out for boxes, which I found, and I even found the "legs" and "knobs" for them--

I LOVE these old children's blocks--$5.00 for the whole bag!

One more thing I wanted to show you.  I found some more faces for my face collection--

These are oil and vinegar ceramic bananas--love em!!

So our plan was that when we were finished to go for a walk at our beach area which is right there by the show.  Well, it's more than a beach.  It's Presque Isle State Park, which is a 21 mile peninsula that goes into Lake Erie with 12 beaches.  It's a very popular tourist site.  You can hike, bike (10 mile bike trail), boat, swim, birdwatch, etc., etc. All the out of town people call it Presque Isle, but everyone hear just calls it the beach. We love walking on the bike trail, and that was the plan (I was going to take photos), but it was 42 degrees out and sleeting.  Okay its Spring and I'm not complaining or anything.  And I know all about the April shower and May flower thing, but 42 degrees---really??

Friday, April 16, 2010

Fun With Cigar Boxes

I know that I don't have to tell mixed media artists that when they're done smoking their cigars--don't throw out the boxes. (just kidding--I know you don't smoke cigars, or do you?)  These boxes  are probably a staple item in everyone's art supplies.  I don't happen to smoke cigars either, so every once in a while, I'll visit the local tobacco store and pick some up.  I just bought these 3 for $1.00 each!

My only requirement is that they be wood, and not cardboard, because I like to alter them into functional boxes--

Isn't this fun?  I also like to take the lid off (but don't throw it away--it's a great surface to paint on), and make collage boxes out of them, or turn it over and paint on it like a gallery-wrapped canvas.  If  anything, they're great for storing crayons, markers, pencils, or whatever.  This is  why they're great to get.

Plus I also finished my last 4 x 12 canvas--

When I posted these before, Martha was saying that these would look good with a Suzi face on it, and I thought, yeah that's a good idea, but  I decided to make a Suzi sun face instead. I love making these sun faces  (probably because  we don't get to see  much of it  around here).  I think this one is my favorite--but I like them all.

I think that next time I do this, I want to make one on a larger canvas or maybe a piece of wood to see how it turns out, and  I really love these with the painted papers.  You can't tell from the photos, but they all have lots of texture.

I also wanted to thank everyone for their comments on my art room/studio from my last post.  It's so funny because alot of you remarked on how neat and tidy it was.  And your right--it is.  Don't get me  wrong, when I'm in the middle of a project, all hell breaks loose, but when I'm finished, I always clean up and put everything back.  I never used to do this, but when I cleaned this room out last month, I vowed to keep it this way, because I would get so fustrated trying to wade through the mess all the time.  Now when I go in there--I just love it!!  And it's inspired me to clean the rest of my house--seriously.   You don't want to see the rest of my house--trust me.

And one more thing--this is to Dapoppins--I hope you're reading this. I wanted to tell you that I love the scrapbook that you made--I think it was for your son--right?  The reason why I can't tell her on her blog, is because she turned her comment option off.  She feels that she is addicted to comments and is trying to break her addiction : )  Lets face it--we all like comments. It's kind of like when  someone's talking to you --you want to reply to what they're saying or showing.  It's how we get to know each other.  I've made friends in the last couple of months with bloggers just through us commenting to each other.  She does, however, have a poll on her blog for you to vote if she should turn the comments back on, and last time I checked, 92% said yes!  So come on Dapoppins--turn on your comments again so we can "talk" : )   Just click on her name to visit her blog.  OKAY HERE'S AN UPDATE ON THIS BLOG--I just went to Dapoppins blog, and she's put the comments back on--YAY for you Dapoppins!


Wednesday, April 14, 2010


So this was a birthday present to myself--my birthday was in February, but better late than never--

I purchased this from the most talented Lisa Lectura.  She posted  it on her blog back in December, and as soon as I saw it, I knew that I wanted it for my little art room  that I was making over.  She has an Etsy store, and she customizes also, and if you're familiar with her work, you know she also paints wonderful angels, and other mixed media pieces.   I love her very creative blog.

So speaking of my art room--I won't call it a studio--it's just too small.  I wanted to show you around a little bit.  First, this is where I do most of my work--

Believe me, this table is usually a  happy  mess, but I knew "company" was coming, so I cleaned it up.  And see the paintings on the wall?-those are Julie Ann's  amazing angels--if you go to her blog (just click on her name), at the top, it says free angel images that she is so generous in sharing, and that is where these came from. I just downloaded them and put them on canvases--thank you so much again, Julie!  She's also opened up a new ning site--Whimsical Art Academy.

And then we have the other side of the room--keep in mind this is a very small room--

I love my collection of faces--I have them all over the  house.


And this is my Elizabeth with color.  Why am I not satisfied with this?!  Two months ago, I would have been ecstatic--I guess this means that I'm pushing myself.  This is a good thing--

And on this  wall here  is my ever-growing collection of art--

Some is mine, and the other pieces are from various artists.  There are 2 reasons for this--the first one, of course is I just want to be surrounded by art, and the other reason is to cover up the cracks in the plaster.  This poor room is in such need to be replastered. I complain about this house alot with all of its problems. And sometimes I feel that  I live in a sardine can, because the houses are so close together (when I open up the windows in the summer, I can hear all the gossip going on from my neighbors  who sit on their porches across the street--that's how close these houses are) but I could never leave it--it's part of the family .

We've lived here since 1981, and this room was a bedroom to one of my kids at one time or another.  With 5 kids, it's hard to have your own room, but this room is so small, that only one could fit in it, so who ever had it--liked it alot! 

And there's another reason why I'm so attached to this house.  This is the house that I grew up in until I moved out when I was 19, and THIS was my bedroom the whole time that I lived here with my family.  So if you would  have told me 40 years ago, that I would be coming back, and raising a family here, and in the end, turn my bedroom into an ART ROOM?!--well, you would  have  knocked  me over with a feather!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

A Fun Little Technique

I've been adding on to my patchwork colleciton--

These are 4 x 12 wrapped canvases,  which I also found at Jo Ann's when I was there.  It was a  pack of 3, so I'm  making another one also.  The technique I wanted to show you is on this one--

The flowers are made from  Golden's soft molding paste--

But I actually talked about this technique here.  What I wanted to show you was this one--

I started out by applying this to the spots that I wanted to apply the beads--

Crystal Lacquer--it's just like Diamond Glaze, but I like it alot better.  You don't get the tiny air bubbles like you do with the Diamond Glaze. If you've never used it  before, the results end  up being like the  2 part resin.  It has a very glassy, dimensional look, and it's an excellent adhesive. Also, if you apply multiple layers, it will get more dimensional looking.  Which is what I did--

It was still wet here when I took these photos, but  it does dry clear, which takes a couple of hours to be completely dry. I squeeze a small amount on the surface, add whatever to it, and then keep repeating the process until I'm satisfied.  I haven't done this in a while. It's also fun when you're collaging and want to scatter things--I've used buttons, old jewelry pieces, anything!  It's nice to use for small projects.  I've  never actually used the 2 part resin--has anyone?  It looks a bit tricky.


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