"Sometimes Change Is A Good Thing" Mixed Media Canvas October 06 2015, 0 Comments

"Sometimes change is a good thing"

I picked this theme sitting here watching the leaves outside my window changing, as the New England air gets colder and Fall makes its appearance.  There's also a mix of warm days where I see the butterflies fluttering about. So many good things can come from change that it seemed appropriate to make something to remind us of this. 

When it came to making this mixed media canvas, I threw a lot of different mediums in it.  It measures 14" tall by 11" wide and is backed with brown craft paper and a metal hanger has been secured to the backside for hanging. Doing this makes it look more complete but isn't necessary. I want to sell this in Tamm's online gift shop and made it this way to enhance the professional look of fine art from a gallery.  

Here's a breakdown of the various mixed mediums used and how (with pictures). And to start, just so you know...I covered my canvas with Gesso and Mod Podged different ripped papers onto it that I liked. After it dried, I mixed some water with Gesso and white-washed the whole canvas. Then proceeded to rubber stamp images all over the canvas where I thought they each belonged. Seems like I'm going over my work and hiding it behind the next layer, right? Well, that is the whole idea of Mixed Media, to layer on top, leaving selected areas that you like showing. By the time you're done, you may have twenty different selected areas you chose to become part of the painting in the end. 

The hand-drawn words and black stitching are made using a medium Sharpie marker and were written on the inside of an upcycled Betty Crocker scalloped potatoes box. I then Mod Podged them to the canvas when I was ready. There are tiny speckles and some splotches in the coloring of the cardboard...well, that is one of my brown alcohol inks that is in a little spray bottle.  

The purple butterflies were die cuts run through the Spellbinders Grand Calibur machine that I'm borrowing from my mom. (I do plan to blog in the very near future on the topic of what I learned while playing with my mom's Spellbinder). The butterflies were cut from a white upcycled tea box and then water-colored in purple with watercolor pencils and then water applied with a paintbrush.  Using water with a paintbrush on your colored pencil markings blends the color onto the paper and softens them. Once dry, they were Mod Podged onto the canvas when ready. The black butterfly you see is a rubber stamp. Notice I wrapped it around the top of the canvas and same with the gold dots? I just love the way that makes the tops, bottoms and sides of your canvas be included in your art rather than framing it and hiding them.  The black crackle and old cursive writing that you see are also rubber stamps. 


Above are some more shots of the sides for you to see how they wrap around and blend into the artwork. Would you ever have guessed that this particular canvas had its staples all around the edges? I hid them well in the modeling pastes, cremes and gels, crackling paste, fabric paste, pearl mica flake, paint and paper. Building up layers and textures with these types of mediums is how I did it.

These two white beaded flowers were already made and I happened to think they looked nice around the little pink felt and jeweled heart I made recently at one of the Make and Take booths of last month's Scrapbooking Convention in Marlborough, MA. The gold dots you've been seeing around is Faber Castell's Gold Texture Luxe and a stencil. The white textured patch underneath the two white beaded flowers is Fabric Paste that was applied with a palette knife. I chose to keep mine white but you can always mix it ahead of time with a color or apply color after it dries. Not only did I like the texture of it, I liked the fact that I trusted it would hold those beaded flowers in place. Before I was done with the heart and flower area, I added some Pearl Mica Flake on and around the pink felt to give it that silvery glittery glow. The Champagne color in the upper left corner is Viva's Modellier-Creme and a stencil.  Again, the black cracked look comes from randomly rubber stamping it around my canvas.

Check out how the crackle paste hardly crackled around the word "is". That is because I barely applied any and it faintly crackled. If I wanted more prominent cracks I would have put it on thicker. I decided to leave this as is in color, white but you can always add your color to it ahead of time or after it dries.

I had a couple of different die cuts to use.  These two are specifically Ellentina Cutting Dies #DCL023 and Art-C. The little black butterfly is from Art-C's 8 piece set. It came with dies and stamps. The leaf stamped below was placed there specifically to show it in full but notice how I also stamped more below and around it but hid them partially under the brown leaf embellishments. I'm trying to make it look like it all belongs together and blend.


The leaves were cut using Ellentina Cutting Dies #DCG007 and Darice Embossing Essentials. They are all made using the inside of an upcycled Kraft Macs N Cheese Box. I hand painted them to resemble Autumn colors of browns and faint greens. Each leaf had their lines drawn on with a Micron pen size 01. Since I've been using that brand for years I tend to favor it for fine line drawing like this. Mod Podge was used when ready to affix and seal the leaves onto the canvas.

This is a good shot of the Champagne Modellier-Creme and stencil. I like the look of a partial stencil instead of using the whole thing. I randomly place my stencils around my canvas, trying to squeeze it in where it fits but without overkill. 

Just like these gold dots.  I squeezed them in to their places between things that were already Mod Podged onto the canvas. 

And lastly, don't forget to sign your art. I use my initials as my artist's signature. You'll see these same "JQ's" on everything I make.  

Thanks for reading along on the making of this piece. If you have any questions or comments, post them. We'd love to hear from you. Anyone want to see a Mixed Media themed project done on a particular subject matter, please make a suggestion. Next up is one that has a postal theme. I have a bunch of things to add to it as I go including old mail stamps and vintage envelope pieces. I'll keep you posted and blog about it when done. 

Enjoy being creative and enjoy your day!