Friday, 28 March 2014

Trying the Texture you have at Hand

If you want to have the freedom to go beyond the comfort zone of your creativity while using your imagination and exploration skills, then look out for Kim Kelley who loves being involved with Mixed Media Art.

Kelley has this simple project where she will be making a layout that can be used as a scrapbook page, framed art, or just wall d├ęcor using 3 name brand products. Using a kit she purchased from scrapbook Diaries, consisting of papers, frames, flowers, sprays and even micro beads. Being her first creation that has been made on paper instead of wood or canvas could pose surprising results. This is how she did it:
  • Getting papers layered and glued in place. The texture is rough though and the brown color is not so pleasing but the use of gesso over it before adding any paint, spray or color technique helped achieve a perfect feel.
  • Adding the regular gloss gel and micro beads to give it some texture. It dries clear and the beads are clear which give it a shine. 
  • Colors that come with the kit - Amber and Dark Brown Chalk spray – while added give it a sparkle.
  • Embellishments are then added and the final step is putting it all together. Adding some gloss Mod Podge over the top gives it that glorious shine. And your project is done. 
Kelly feels that whatever you feel looks right, is right. That is the best part about Mixed Media Art, there is no wrong or right way to end a project.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Putting your Endless Amounts of Vision, Talent, and Techniques into Shared Art

Laura Thykeson has been totally immersed in mixed media art for many years. Since her discovery of altered books and art journals she has been hooked ever since. She acknowledges the fact that to create something magical, artists will use their endless amounts of Vision, Talent and Techniques while more often than not the final item which is Desire is always taken for granted. However she insists that you always have the desire to create. Such is the miracle of art. To any artist, the wonderful, unique designs and abilities would just drift through their imaginations forever and never see the light of day. However they can be shared with others in a physical and tangible form.

People of all ages and walks of life may be hungry for even the simplest form of self expression but don‘t realize it yet and something solid and permanent will remind the world for years. It could be that driving “desire to create” that may be the main quality we should think about fostering in others when sharing our gifts with others. Laura says that to kick start any creative activity, you ought to gather some inexpensive items to include as “artistic desire supplies“ and after all the other processes include an artist bio and mission statement, and include your email address, along with an idea of the “real” gift you are hoping to pass on. Then, it won’t be long before the “desire to create“hits them and off they go.

Playing with Creative Techniques

Elaine Brady Smith loves creating acrylic mixed media and encaustic collages. One of her favorite go-to methods is adding transparent collage layers to her work. It adds depth and history thus creating more interesting piece of art. And what does supplies does she need for her project?
  • Cardboard, Mat board, or Foam Core Board
  • Fun Foam
  • Pencil or Fine Point Marker
  • Scissors 
  • Gel Medium
  • White Tissue Paper
  • Sponge Roller
  • Large Paper Plate
  • Acrylic Paint 
  • Wax Paper
  • Large White Trash Bag 
  • Masking Tape
  • 1” Flat Paint Brush
  • Plastic or Paper Cup
The following are the processes she uses to achieve her art:
  • Cutting both the board and the fun foam to the same size
  • Gluing the pieces to the board by brushing a layer of gel medium over the board surface with a paint brush, and then place the pieces where you want them.
  • Placing your stamp foam side up and roll the paint filled roller over it
  • Remove the wax paper and gently pull the tissue off the stamp to reveal your image
  • After your prints are dry, lay them on a white trash bag that has been taped flat to a hard surface
  • Put a small amount of Liquetex Gloss Medium and Varnish in a plastic or paper cup and when the medium is dry, carefully lift the printed tissue from the plastic bag.
  • You can now add the transparent collage pieces to your art and there the collage is complete. 
Try it now!

Incorporate your Hand-lettering as a Graffiti Style to your Sketchbook

Martice Smith II is the creative director of Martice Smith II – Illustration & Design Studio and her stunning illustrations reveal her love for fashion, typography and wildlife- using a combination of analog and digital techniques. She attributes her work to being a creative artist within the Mixed Media Art website.

She highlights to other art journalers and doodlers how to make eye-catching book cover while incorporating hand-lettering as a graffiti style that’s sure to impress. It is an exercise that will take less than 30Minutes. She adds that the creative project will urge you to have the courage to experiment with graffiti-styled lettering, inspired by your own personality. Here is your chance.
  • Gather supplies and tools which are likely to be on hand since the project is inexpensive. 
  • Cut and fold paper by starting out with the right measurements. It should be double the size you want for the finished sketchbook. 
  • Design the cover while thinking about the elements of art and principles of design. Line and rhythm are the most common and basic elements. 
  • Sew your sketchbook using a simple Pamphlet Stitch. The sewing should look straight and taut.
  • Varnish the cover which is usually the final stage. Note that every coat of varnish needs to completely dry before applying another coat. 
The biggest secret is to Design your cover with patterns, textures, overlapping shapes and complementary colors that help bring the design together in a cohesive way. Add words, phrases, quotes or expressive writing in various areas. Be bold and let your personality shine!

Monday, 17 March 2014

Making Shapes for your Artworks

Mixed media art is all about; being able to use your inner creativity to make something and share your artwork with the world. A review of different shapes and sizes will encourage you to try using your current favorite techniques and apply them to different arrangements. This is because it is so easy to get stuck into the same old pattern. However we can still apply creativity on the same old skills and techniques which can make something out of them. Instead of cutting card, adding image and adding text, you can use small pieces like moo card or inches to make different shaped backgrounds. Besides you will incorporate color and different styles.

Some of the following ranges of standard sizes of shapes will commonly appear in swaps and challenges across the Internet and with local crafting groups. And by the way, the small sizes are of more preference because they can be used in making multiples. While arches can be turned into books, they can also be added to the front of the handmade cards.

Here are the sizes:
  • Moo Cards (1 1/8″ x 2 3/4″)
  • Postcards (4″ x 6″ – either orientation)
  • Arches (4″ x 6″)
  • Pennants (4″ across top x 6″) 
You can get creative with the above sizes. Happy creating.

Helpful Craft Ideas

More often than not, those who love crafting will always find themselves with so much time they can use to carry out crafting but sadly they usually don’t have the crafting ideas. If you don’t have any inspiration or any crafting ideas, borrow a leaf from the ideas below:
  • Perhaps you revisit your early work and sketches from where you can borrow ideas. All along, make sure you have a sketch book or an art journal where you can put all these ideas for a later reference.
  • Sort through your different colored pieces of paper and probably the different colors are likely to grab your attention and bring along a new idea which will spark your creativity. 
  • Put your creativity to test and start simple projects like making greeting cards which will eventually grow to something worthwhile. 
  • Look out for a drawer in your house of craft store that you have not looked at in a long while. You may find something you bought earlier on that either you did not use or it was forgotten and will likely trigger an idea in you.
  • Your unfinished objects could also be a good source of something new and you can also transform it into something better. 
Good luck!

Looking at Encaustic and Glass Mixed Media Technique

Anjuli Johnson, who is a Mixed Media Artist and who began her art career as a scrapbooker loves all things that mixed media - paper, glue, paint, canvas, pens, wire and gears can make. She is more or less into encaustic techniques, which she says she stays within their different ranges because she knows she is doing something different that allows her to experiment or do trial and error. Whether it works out or not for her that’s how she learns and develops her artistic talents.

She explores working with encaustics on fabric where she uses brocade as a base because of the beautiful colors, edges and the fact that she can leave the edges frayed or burn them smooth. 2x2 inch squares of glass for inside her encaustic is all she needs while alcohol ink will be used for a stained glass effect.

Working with stitched fabric requires that you paint on both sides unlike wood because of melting of wax used. But for her, she advises that it is better to work until you are almost through then add the wax and the embellishments on one side, and then begin working on the other side. You will need to heat the wax between layers so they fuse together.

One of her most favorite resources of encaustic techniques is the book called “The Encaustic Studio” by Daniella Wolf. Her motto is “don’t be afraid to experiment and try new things. They are well worth the risk.”

Using Mixed Media Art Technique sheet 6 to Create Stencils from Photos

Mixed Media has new a technique of creating stencils from Photos – the technique sheet 6. Here is how you do it:
  • Using a ruler, tear out various text pages which you will then stick onto an art journal and spread then using glue stick. Adding some light blue paint will do some magic
  • Application of the paint on the journal should start from the top and using a credit card. Lifting up the card a little at some point during application of the paint would give a real fading effect.
  • Have a few more layers of light blue ad others of straight white right from the brown section. The white will apparently take away some of the darkness from the brown you had applied earlier.
  • You are done with your project. The advantage of using a credit card to apply paint is that the print dries really quickly so it is easy to add lots of layers in a short amount of time.
Now the finishing point happens to be the most exciting. Create a stencil from a photo and sponge trees on the background with grey paint. Adding some black ink into the grey will do some great work while adding the trees.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Looking at Creative Photo Frames

Cecilia Sanchez his children as naughty and because they like to play with bottle tops, she has thought of making cheeky photo frames courtesy of Mixed Media Art. She loves craft in general and particularly photography, drawing and making photo albums with cuts and travel souvenirs. Besides his three sons inspire her with crazy ideas and the following is a list of materials she uses for her craft activities:
  • Wooden frames.
  • Bottle Tops
  • Metal Washers
  • Acrylic paint
  • Marbles 

  • Glue 
The following are the steps Cecilia uses to make her photo frames:
Step 1.Have your frame ready and in shape
 Step 2. Glue the metal elements and cover them with a coat of gesso. A stencil of electronic circuits with gesso gives more texture
Step 3. Fix the Mod Podge and a layer of acrylic paint. You can wipe the excess paint with some baby wipes.
Step 4. Adding a layer of Distress Crackle paint, gives her work a fascinating final touch.
Cecelia has an art journal which is a diary for her and which she uses to express feelings. She has also discovered scrapbooking. Learning and discovering new techniques is her way of life. To crown it all she designer for a monthly blog challenge Sweet Card Club. 

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Putting your Creativity to Test with Paper Clay Hand Sculpted Elf Fairy Throne

Creativity is a process that one has to work on according to Mixed Media Art. Gloriann Irizarry who creates paper clay fairy throne with vines and roses confirms the same. The following are the materials she recommends that you use if you have to achieve big on this project: -
  • Acrylic paints and paint brushes
  • Embossing tools
  • Clay roller
  • Ivy leaf cutter
  • Creative Paper clay Material
  • Hot glue gun and refills
  • Foam board, ruler and eraser
  • Scissors and pencil among many others.
Gloriann advises that you start with a sketch which will ultimately act as a guide of how the final project will be like besides ensuring that you have the right measurements. Step for this project include:
  • Trace the pieces down to your foam board and carefully cut with a sharp Xacto knife blade
  • Use the hot glue gun to piece them up
  • Roll out the creative Paper clay material in 1/4 thickness sheet once all the glue is dry.  Clear out any excessive clay with scissors.
  • The entire piece of Throne will be heavy and fragile due to the clay moisture once it’s dry.
  • Work the second coat all over the first layer from head to feet once more but don’t let the second coat completely dry. Instead, mist the Throne with the spray water so it is a lot easier to add the final details to the piece.
  • Decorations will begin thereafter with the embellishments you have and your piece of art will be set to go.
You will have finally put your creativity to test. 

Explaining How “Art and Food” could be used Side by Side as Artist Themes

According to Mary Beth Shaw Mixed Media artists should always be ready to advance their skills and fearlessly jump into the deep end of the mixed media techniques pool. Mary through her book has been able to bring together talents of 15 of her artistic friends with a strong theme of combining skill and flavors of cooking with those of art, highlighting that “Art and food are two of life’s most sensory pleasures and certainly two of her favorite things”

All the chapters in this book have a combination of Color, Texture, Layers, Flavors and three guest artists and three projects all which you will sink your teeth into. You are also provided with real recipes which add a real element of tying the cookbook and art book together. Besides the colors used, the depth of layers and the texture of the final piece particularly on two projects “Painting without Paint” piece and the “Clayboard book” are all captivating.

The combination of colors on the two projects using artist pastels and chalks was bliss according to Mary Beth though from the very beginning she did not know what she was getting herself into. It was even more charming when the letters were highlighted with a brown marker with additional of highlights with gold acrylic paint on a dry brush. At the end of it all the results were mesmerizing to the eyes.

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Creating Backgrounds with a Variety of Ranger Alcohol Inks

Melanie Statnick is a Canadian Mixed Media & Collage Artist who creates art daily and with a whimsy, positive and fun style. One of her favorite projects is to create landscapes with Alcohol inks that she used to make Mixed media backgrounds. Acrylic landscapes excite her since the Alcohol inks allow her to have some experimental fun. She gives a list of the supplies you will require to create those backgrounds which include:
  • Alcohol Blending Solution 
  • Waterproof ink pad 
  • Paper Towel and gloves 
  • Small glass bowl
  • Waterproof ink pad 
  • Ranger Alcohol Inks in a variety of colors 
  • Alcohol ink cardstock and/or Yupo paper pad 
  • Stamps of choice and old toothbrush. 
Creating layered inks will help you achieve the look of a landscape. You can choose to use traditional colors and you can also top them up with own creativity. The secret behind this is that ink dry fairly quickly. Additionally, adding splatters of paint to a painting can make for some interesting texture. Adding more ink will make areas darker. You can also add your favorite stamps to your background. According to Melanie Statnick whose artwork can be found in art galleries and shops extensively in NC it is all fun to explore.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Wondering what Came First?

According to Mixed Media Art, being a crafter is something that you should be proud of because from the many arts available today like journaling and scrapbooking, old techniques of doing so are slowly coming back into the market. On the other hand, there is more description of the primitive tools used in the in the early days as highlighted below and which will depict how the artistic industry has grown:
  • The acrylic paint which was used in the late 1930’s is still available today and in this case for many more uses. 
  • Permanent ink markers have since replaced the ancient Sumi painting.
  • Encaustic which was one of the earliest Greek arts but has apparently become one of the newest darlings on the art scene. This is because it can be used with embellishments, collage, fiber, papers, and textured or glossy surfaces. 
  • Oil was carefully prepared in the studios by apprentices. Syringes and pig bladders were considered the early tubes to use then.
  • Tools required that you are creative and anything that would make a mark would literally be used. 
So far many artists have found themselves using primitive tools and materials to make their artistic dreams come true. Moreover manufacturers have created design labs which will supposedly take care of the demands for more papers, embellishments, texturing tools, paints, stamps, inks, books, etc.