Imagine. Create. Enjoy.
The new Quilt Series stencils have been a source of great inspiration for me. After my last project, where I worked with paint in my art journal, I decided to get my SEW on and grabbed some fabric and embroidery thread. Since I am more of a tortoise than a hare when it comes to hand sewing (okay okay, really ANY sewing) I am only sharing the first half of the project this week.
Here's what I used:
First step was painting my canvas. I sprayed my canvas with water so when I brushed on the paint it would apply smoothly and blend well. I also made sure I used a wet brush and brushed the paint on the canvas with circular motions. I was going for a wash of color as opposed to thick layers because I wanted to fabric to stay pliable.
When the canvas was dry I placed my two stencils down and did a layer of gesso and then, when dry, a layer of Penny.
Now comes the sewing!! So far I have chosen a variegated embroidery thread and sewed around the edges of the stencil with a back stitch. When I add more stitches I'll be thinking about what I would add if this was a drawing or painting. My needle and thread will act as my pencil or paintbrush. I am enjoying the handiwork and I find myself relaxing as I work. It's nice to unplug, slow down and make progress stitch by stitch.
Will it be a book cover? A wall hanging? Check back next time to find out!
Don't you just love the designs of the new stencils?! I have long admired quilters and the artistry they accomplish with fabric and thread. My husband's maternal grandmother was an accomplished quilter and I remember being amazed and humbled when watching her work and seeing her numerous finished creations. She was an artist through and through.
To me, quilting is very American. I know that quilting was around before our country was formed but history shows us it flourished after the arrival of the English and Dutch settlers. Taking fabric and piecing it together in new ways brings art to a utilitarian item and don't you think it has so much symbolism? A quilt can bring comfort, security and peace. It's texture can be warm and cozy. All the seemingly different fabrics brought together with many little stitches become a finished item that seems filled with history, stories and love.
Another thing that's been on my mind lately is my Dad. He passed a little over 4 years ago. He loved this country and considered himself a patriot. He loved, supported and was ready to defend his COUNTRY. He wanted this land to be a place his posterity could flourish in and be able to feel comfort, security and peace. Now, I'm not going to wax political on you. I just want to share what I created in my art journal this week as I needed to express some positive feelings.
Here are the supplies I used:
I started with a page in my journal that already had black and blue paint which I added red to.
I then used the Ohio Star and Star Flower stencils with gesso to create the background. When the gesso dried I added "stitches" with a black acrylic paint pen.
After sketching out where I wanted the face to go I added a layer with blue paint and the Ripples stencil so my face would have a subtle texture behind it.
Using gesso I created an underpainting for my face. When that was dry I built layers with the acrylics to create the face. I wanted both light and dark to show across the face.
A final quilt stencil layer on top of the face and a few words and I am happy with the results. I like how the quilt imagery adds a feeling of comfort and order. The bold quilt pattern contrasts with the painterly quality of the face which is partially hidden in the shadows but is emerging to the light.
I will leave you with this definition:
So as I said in my last post I have been taking part in a Faces of February challenge, I have been making a face everyday, using different mediums or styles. So that being said, this post is not about a face I did! lol! because I have to plan these out a bit I just wanted to play and do a bit of playing with stencils and paint today!
I started by getting out my Gesso and covering something I didn't care for in my Strathmore Journal. I completely covered my pages in layers of color using multiple stencils, (here is the list: Playful Pods, Japanese Geometric, Traditional Japanese, Halftone Dots, Marked Series and Steampunk, I thinks that's all of them!) and Dina Wakley Acrylic paints.
I grabbed more of the Dina Wakley paint and mixed it with some gesso and made some beautiful blendy loveliness around the flowers.
After that I just went willy nilly, grabbing more paint, some pens and the generals pencils to play until I was done having having fun! The last thing I did was add some simple silhouettes of a fairie and random bugs and some purposely sloppily written "It doesnt have to be fancy to be fun"
This process is by no means something that I created but it is a wonderful way to play with my supplies and make something that I enjoy looking at! Here's the video:
Big hugs and Mushy stuff!
Oh! My lovely lovelies!
I am so happy to be back with you this week! I played a lot the past couple days! And I made a piece that I adore!
I decided I wanted to go out of my comfort zone a lil bit, and try to use mostly items or mediums that I hadn't used before! so I decided I would use DecoArt Crackle Paste, something I have been avoiding, mostly because I had no clue what I was going to do with it, DecoArt Gesso, its really thick so hadn't had a real reason to get it out, my Inka-Gold, my steampunk gears stencil set, they are just new and I love them and some fluid acrylics I got on a clearance rack. I also ended up using one of the Sacred Hearts stencils and a ranger paint dabber along with some other craft acrylics.
For the background gears I just used 1 stencil thickness layer of the the crackle paste, I found that allowing it to air dry produced more cracks than if I tried to speed the drying up with a heat gun. For the heart and the key I first used a stencil thickness layer of the thick gesso, allowed it to dry then applied a 2nd layer using the crackle paste.
For the color on the background, I used fluid acrylics and dark spray ink applied with a paintbrush. I then went over it again with color, did some sanding to rough it up and then applied the inka-gold with my finger or a paint brush. I love how the inka-gold looks, on some of the pictures it looks like a light is shining on the piece, but its not! It's just the Inka-gold doing its thing! love the stuff!
I then decided I had to add a face, so I went in with the thick gesso to create a face shape and cover up some of the background gears, I then just did a very simple face, using the background gold as pseudo hair.
I am totally in love with the crackle now! I cant wait to try it out again on something new. I have all kinds of ideas!
I have always been attracted to geometry through the art of origami. Folding squares of paper into simple or complex models is on one hand challenging and on the other very soothing and calming for me. The result of folding always gives me joy and I love sharing it with others and I believe origami connects me socially, creatively and spiritually. I never understood that until recently when I started to explore sacred geometry in art and nature. The act of folding a paper square into something beautiful or functional and being aware of each step of the process keeps my mind in the present moment. I always thought of origami as therapy and now I understand why.
I thought of a beautiful box designed by origami master Tomoko Fuse of Japan for this blog post today. Folding the box requires 8 sheets of paper the exact same size. I used Kraft paper because it is heavier than standard origami paper but you can use any type of medium to heavy weight paper and cut them into 6” squares. I love decorating plain origami papers before folding and the Sacred Geometry series are perfect because they are the same size as standard origami paper.
Apply white gesso onto 4 sheets of the black paper over the ACS121 "Metatrons Cube" Sacred Geometry 2 stencil using a stencil brush.
Apply black gesso (or thick bodied black paint) onto 4 sheets of white paper over the ACS120 "Quattro Flower" Sacred Geometry 2 stencil.
Let the papers dry before going to the next step. They may be slightly wrinkled but don’t worry, you will flatten them completely before folding.
I love interference colors because they reflect light and interact with the base color. I used Golden interference colors because they dry without being sticky and that is very important when folding unit boxes.
Apply the interference blue onto the black paper and interference violet onto the white. See how the color pops off the black and is more subtle on the white. Cover the entire surface of each sheet of paper and let dry completely.
After the papers dry and if they are still slightly wrinkled, flatten them under heavy books between sheets of wax paper. This is the part where patience is important because you want the sheets to be perfectly flat before folding. I use a book press but any method is fine just as long as the sheets are bone dry and flat.
You will use four sheets for the box top and four for the bottom. Diagrams for the box are found in books and online. I made a video a few years ago on how to fold it because diagrams aren’t always easy to follow. I would suggest folding the box top first.
Watch the video on how to fold and assemble the box bottom.
The box will be very sturdy after folding and assembling. I have made this box hundreds of times and the process has given much joy and peace while presenting small gifts and storing sacred items.
Yasutomo kraft origami paper
Golden Interference colors, blue and violet
When I started working on today’s project – the theme that kept coming up for me was "calm." I wanted to create calming artwork in a calming environment. For me, the way to begin is always lighting a bit of incense or white sage. Scent helps me start the calming process. Next, I grabbed the Sacred Geometry 2 stencils. When I look at them, I find them mesmerizing – and definitely calming!
This time, I decided to pick a color scheme before I started. Sometimes I do this so that I can work without having to worry much about what color goes with what, or what I should use where. Today, I’m going to use Titan Buff, Cobalt Teal, Magenta, Payne’s Grey, Dioxaxine Purple and of course – Fluorescent Pink!
I started with an Aquabord from Ampersand. Under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t gesso it, however, I had recently painted something on it that I didn’t like. So gesso first it is.
Next, I added a layer of Dye-Na-Flow in “Midnight Blue”. Before it dried, I also sprinkled some salt.
Let it dry completely, then wipe the salt away. I think it leaves a cool texture to work with.
Next up, I used Sacred Geometry 2 stencils with DecoArt Media Mister in “Purple”. I’m not worried about adding more layers on top of this because the mister dries permanently.
Once that dried completely, I brought in some more white gesso so I could have a nice surface to draw on, but I wanted that gesso to melt into the painting so I let it drip.
Next, I sketched and then painted it with the colors listed above. I used DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics and Golden High Flow. Then, I finished it off with white highlights with my Uniball Signo UM-153 pen.
I hope you have enjoyed this process and that you have found your calm along the way.