Imagine. Create. Enjoy.
“Digging through my roots to understand the way my branches grew.”― Saleem Haddad
Are you like me…a collector of stories? Do tales of our immigrant past captivate you as they do me? Currently on my bookstand is “Three Minutes in Poland”. The author, Glenn Kurtz, discovered a family home movie filmed in 1938. This began a search to uncover the lost history of the town and people of Nasielsk. I can’t put the book down, and it certainly has influenced my muse for the next project.
I decided to once again create a design inspired by the fabric flags I purchased, this time using just two. After attaching the flags to my poster board I lightly sanded them. The flags have a canvas texture and the sanding enhanced the weave. I sponged acrylics starting at the bottom and working to the top creating a tranquil evening sky.
The rubber stamp has been in my collection for quite a while. I inked it up with black acrylic paint and repeated the image several times across the flags. I liked the grainy finish which added texture to the composition.
Taking inspiration from the stamp design I added colour by stenciling Artistcellar’s Infra and Highlight Halftone Dots.
The bottoms of the flags are covered with wax infused tissue paper. Reminiscent of the stories told to me, the words create a cadence all their own. I intend to frame the flags and attach beads and charms to the cords…a few that were even passed on to me.
There is so much to learn from recollections shared by family members. Bittersweet memories passed on to me by my grandmother of her youth in Poland are an integral part of my “root system”. And this foundation allowed my branches to search for their perfect evening sky.
“I’ve learned that home isn’t a place, it’s a feeling.” – Cecelia Ahern
Have you ever been driving down a street and wondered…Who lives in a house like this? It may not be the largest or the most attractive, but there is something about it that catches your eye. That’s how I feel about a local apartment house with the chic name Stonehurst Court.
In my last post I mentioned recycling tissue paper to mop up paint from your stencils. Using the tissue I covered with acrylic, I created the mini canvas you see here. I love the freedom of this technique. You never know how much of the paint will transfer. The results are unexpected and can be a great inspiration. I still have quite a lot of paper left. I will be using it for a community project in a few weeks.
One of my favourite Artistcellar stencils is the Halftone Dots Series. With just a bit of painter’s tape you can mask off just what you need to enhance your design. Inspired by the many steps leading to Stonehurst Court’s front door the largest dots, Shadow, take center stage on my canvas. As the building is surrounded by bushes and plants, I completed the design by tearing off organic sections of the tissue and layering with matte medium. The Playful Pods shimmering in gold added just the effect I was after.
Who lives in a house like this? I like to think people who are adventurous and like to create the feeling of home wherever the put down roots. Is there a certain place that inspires you? I hope you will try the tissue paper technique and have as much fun with it as I did.
“Stay close to anything that makes you glad you are alive.”- Hafiz of Shiraz
It’s been cold, snowy and in my humble opinion, a dreadfully extended winter. Now that March is here I am more than ready for longer and warmer days. And the first day of spring, for me, is forever linked with the Persian New Year festival of Nowruz. Starting on the day of the vernal equinox and literally meaning "new day", Nowruz celebrations continue for two weeks ending with an outdoor picnic. Inspired by the holiday, I couldn’t wait to start my next project.
Although too cold in many parts of the country for a picnic, I wanted to send some warmth through the mail. Junk mail is a plethora of inspiration for mixed media artists. Digging through my collection of envelopes, I decided to recycle one with a window. I masked out the cellophane opening with surgical tape and started my background with a textured natural sponge and Dylusion Paints. Once the background was dry, I started stenciling.
The Artistcellar stencil range is known for its diversity. You will always find just the right stencil to create inspired work. This time I wanted to feature the flying dragonflies and cherry blossoms of the Traditional Japanese series. I used the Playful Pods as a hint of what the envelope would hold. The stencils effortlessly conveyed the spirit of all things fresh and new.
Recently I have been experimenting with used tea bags. I have been exploring different techniques…trying to get a feel of what works and what doesn’t. I chose two of my bags to use as seed packets. Keeping with tradition, I filled one with wheatgrass. I packed the other with forget-me-not seeds. They will show through the window when I get them ready to mail. An added bonus…my surgical tape mask is now washi tape for use with another project.
It’s been difficult getting through the dark days of winter. But with the approaching first day of spring and the celebration of Nowruz I now have a good excuse to fill the house with hyacinths and tulips. And here is my wish for you: I hope you surround yourself with all that makes you glad to be creative and alive. Happy Spring!MATERIALS USED
I cannot believe it is already December! This month is always fast for me for the obvious holiday reasons and also it is the month of both my and my husband's birthday! Needless to say, there's a whole lot of gift giving going on, so today I knew I needed to make some tags.
I love mixed media tags but don't end up getting to make them as often as I would like. They can also be created for art journals and backgrounds. Sometimes it's even fun to make pockets in your art journal with a tag slipped in.
Last month for my Patreon (www.patreon.com/panart) I designed and gave away a couple of stencils, so I had these watercolor cards lying around from where I had "tested" the stencil with DecoArt's metallic lustre. I didn't want anything to go to waste, so I cut the paper down into two cute little tag sized pieces. Then, I used Tattered Angels Glimmer Mists and Artistcellar "Quasicrystals" and "Arabian Nights" series stencils.
Then, I dried it with a heat gun and added ice stickles glitter glue over the top for extra shine. To finish it, I punched a hole and added some ribbon and even fabric.
The sky is really the limit with tags, and they're fun to make because they are so small -- you can really make a lot of them in a short amount of time. They make for a great way to experiment with colors and supplies!
“If the only prayer you ever say is ‘Thank You’ that will be enough.” – Eckhart Tolle
Looking out over our frost kissed lawn has been a not so gentle reminder that Winter is on the way. But rather than curse the cold, I embraced the sparkle and shine as inspiration for my next Design Team project.
Working with my favourite substrate, Illustration Board, I covered the surface with a smooth coat of gesso. The next layer added was an article about the Dada Movement printed on slightly yellowed newsprint paper. There was a little bit of bleed when I covered the print with Matte Medium. I liked the way the ink became bolder in certain areas as it dried. Looking for a bit of texture, I mopped on white gesso with a rough natural sponge. My board took on a white, frosty appearance … exactly as I had hoped it would. Slow to dry completely, I left it out overnight and in the morning I was ready to begin.
I wanted the look of lace for my background. Artistcellar’s Quasicrystal stencil Quasi, was perfect. I applied the pattern with Champagne metallic acrylic. Combined with the white gesso, it gave me the nostalgic effect I was after.
I’ve had the image of the two women kicking around my scrap box for some time, and I knew this was the perfect setting for them. I only wish I knew who they were and the reason for the photo. They do look happy to be sharing time together. Perhaps I could create an interesting history for them with the elements I had at hand.
I surrounded the ladies with beeswax infused art paper, rubber stamped waxed paper, coffee stained gauze, and more homemade Washi tape, inspired by the Halftone Dots and Quasicrystals Infra stencils.
I have been winterizing the flower beds around the house and salvaged a few dried hydrangea blossoms. The colour was perfect and the petals held up well when glued to the board. My finishing touch was the series of jewelry tags, covered in liquid acrylic and a few Halftone Dots.
As the seasons blend one into the other, I know I am guilty of allowing the daily mechanics of “life” to dull the sparkle and shine of living life mindfully. With the celebration of Thanksgiving I am reminded that a simple “Thank You” has the all the magical sparkle we need.
Hello again everyone!
This week I opted to work on my Artistcellar project at a favorite local coffee shop! Frank and David joined me, and while they played a game of Magic the Gathering, I sipped coffee and arted to my heart's content. It's really fun to create art in places other than my own home - not only was I able to spend time with friends, but it also sparked conversation with a stranger as well.
It's no secret I'm -always- inspired by poetry. I'm working with my beloved mineral paper, watercolors, colored pencils and Artistcellar Quasicrystals and Sacred Geometry 2 stencils to create a simple yet beautiful mandala poetry piece.
I started with a poem I love by Nayyirah Waheed (an absolute favorite!) and built around that idea with colors and textures. From stencils to dripping watercolor, I intuitively built it up until I had something I liked.
This was one of my first attempts at colored pencils on the mineral paper. I tried it after all the watercolor had a chance to totally dry. I will say my final verdict is it's not my favorite - but I don't hate it, either. I think I might like it for smaller details, and to stick to watercolor on the fill in's. Like in the flower petals!
Either way, I'm really happy with my final piece. It was simple and meditative, yet it's fun to look at too.
Where do you like to go to create art outside of your home/studio?
This week has been pretty incredible in my neck of the woods.
I live in Saint Joseph, Missouri and we were in the path of totality for the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse! It ended up raining here, and it was very cloudy at my house so I couldn't actually see the sun, but I did see it go completely dark! - Incredible.
Today, I'm creating a quick and easy project to commemorate the experience.
First I started by adding a layer of black mister to my matte board, then I sprayed the color mists throughout.
When dry, I put down a layer of stencils and went crazy with the mists!
The board was really wet now, so I dried it and then used my gesso tubs to trace circles. 5 of them to be exact.
Finally, I added some of the Gold Leaf adhesive with a brush and let it dry for about 3 minutes. It goes on milky, but when ready it is clear. Next, I laid down sheets of gold leaf over the adhesive and used a soft brush to brush away the excess.
To finish, I added some of the sealer over the gold leaf and added lyrics from Pink Floyd's "Eclipse" with Uniball Signo UM-153 pen.
Hello again !
Recently we celebrated the summer solstice! To celebrate, I picked some flowers and herbs from my garden and made a sweet summer bouquet. Pictured is Sage, Rosemary, Mint, Roses, Black Magic Petunias, Marigolds and Lavender.
Where is the smell-o-vision when we need it?
Anyway, from there I also set up some pretty things, wrote down some wishes and burned them and completed a tarot spread.
After a long day at work, I found it was the perfect ending to the day.
The celebration helped inspire this art journal spread that I have completed today. I rarely use a lot of orange and yellow in my work but wanted to challenge myself to step outside of my box of blues and purples.
When I was developing my Dear Heart Oracle Deck I ordered "testers" from a few different companies. This particular deck was a dud, so I had it just lying around -- I pulled "Passion" from the stack and used it as my launch point.
I started by layering Artistcellar Quasicrystals stencils with Wonderstrumpet "Crystal Points". To get an awesome glimmer and texture, I used Golden Glass Bead Gel on a palette knife through the stencils.
Once dry, I spritzed Adirondack Color Wash spray in "Butterscotch" along with Dylusions "Lemon Zest" and Tattered Angels Glimmer Mists in "Cross My Heart", "Marmalde" and "It's Orange"... Whoa! THE TEXTURE! To finish it up, I grabbed a tag that had been tossed in a drawer in my studio and used hot glue to attach the oracle card and finally attach the tag to the page.
That's it! Super easy, colorful and pure texture gold.
Happy Summer, everyone! See you soon, but in the meantime you can find me on Patreon! https://www.patreon.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I purchase a craft supply, because I know it’s cool, but there it sits in my studio. Has this ever happened to you?
Well, today, I am busting out one of those said craft items. It’s the Blue Moldable Foam Block or Blue Moldable Stamp.
As an expressive artist who loves stencils and mark making, having a surface to mold into a unique stamp is exciting!
I have chosen to use the Quasicrystals series stencils for this example.
This process is really as easy as 1-2-3! The directions are included with the Moldable Foam Stamp.
Are you tired of the impression you have on the Blue Moldable Stamp? No problem! Simply heat it again and repeat the process with something new! Hmmm, manhole covers might be neat, but you’d have to carry an extension cord and your Heat It Craft Tool with you! I am sure there are plenty of things around your home or in your art arsenal that would create lovely textures. Give it a try! Tell us about your experiments in the comments below or on the Artistcellar Facebook Page.
Thanks for playing along!
For more art ideas and mixed media art inspiration, visit me over at OrangeSpiralArts.com
Blessings to you,