Friday, 20 March 2015

Art class - Not Oils


For this class we were asked to bring in a photograph of a landscape that we liked. I chose to base my painting on a photograph that I took on a holiday in Sicily a few years ago.  We are supposed to be experimenting using oil paints for the next couple of weeks but it is difficult to transport a wet oil painting and I have to travel twenty miles to the class. Added to the fact that I don't own any oils, I have decided I will continue to use my acrylic paints but try to use them like oils. For this painting I have been trying out some more Acrylic mediums. In some areas I used fluid retarder to lengthen the time the paint takes  to dry. To add the shadows on the path in the foreground I made a glaze with gloss medium.  This allowed the underpainting to still show through. However, the painting looked patchy when finished with some parts matt and some glossy so I ended up going over the whole painting with a glaze to even it out.  My tutor suggested that it might look better less glossy and that you can mix matt and gloss medium together to get an eggshell like effect.  That will have to wait until my next trip to an art store. 

Lesley x

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Art Class - Acrylic Paint

Still Life - Vegetables

Still trying to catch up. This is a still life that I did with Acrylic paint. After I got home from the class I thought the composition wasn't quite right so I scoured my gardening books for ideas and then added the flower pot and tools at the back.  Then I changed the fruit, which were originally oranges to apples to make it look more like a gardener had just picked some produce. Luckily the grandsons hadn't eaten all our apples at the weekend. The background changed colours several times and I decided not to add the edge of the table but just merge the yellow and blue. Friendly critique, good or bad would be very welcome.

Lesley x

Art Class - A Night Scene


I have been getting behind on finishing my paintings and putting them on the blog so now it is catch up time.  This one I started at home several weeks ago after I missed one of the classes where the topic was painting a night scene.  I have two cold-cast bronze hare sculptures by Paul Jenkins and thought it would be fun to try to create a night scene around a painting of one of them.  I have used gold and brown acrylic paint for the hare, to capture the look of the ornament rather than a real hare. For the sky I used an iridescent medium added to the blue to give the impression of twinkling stars.  The flash from the camera has bounced off this so the photograph isn't a true representation.  I had intended to add some trees in the background but once I had got to this stage I quite liked the simplicity of the painting and didn't want to risk spoiling it. My tutor does keep saying "Sometimes less is more".  Not sure what the others did in the class I missed but I enjoyed trying out the iridescent medium and using the gold paint.  

Lesley x

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Claritystamp Challenge - Anything but a card

Papier-mache bowl

I got the inspiration for this project from the Gelliarts blog. Well worth a visit if you haven't done so already. The instructions for making the papier-mache bowl are explained very clearly there so I wont repeat them, look for yourself here.

Stamps :  NDC Round Tree, NDC Blocks of Fun, Hare from Woodland stamp set 
Inks:        Ranger Archival Jet Black
Stencils:   Claritystamp Leafy Swirl
Other:      White PVA glue, Tissue paper, Acrylic paints

The making of the papier-mache bowl took several days.  I used a balloon, left behind from my grandsons' visit, for the mould and an old phone directory and copier paper torn into strips for the layers.  I watered down white PVA glue to stick the paper strips on.  The base I made by taping on a lid from a Camembert cheese box. The bowl took longer than I had anticipated but a lot of that time was waiting for layers to dry.  When it was thoroughly dry I gave it a base coat of emulsion paint. Now the fun bit, decorating it.

For the outside I chose several Gelliprints in blues and greens, which I cut into rectangles of various sizes and stuck on randomly with PVA glue.  If you look closely you can see I have used the Leafy Swirl stencil on some of them. The inside I wanted to be gold so I gave it a coat of bright red acrylic first and then when dry a couple of coats of gold acrylic.  Obviously it would be very difficult if not impossible to stamp directly onto the bowl so I stamped onto tissue paper, cut around them and then stuck them on with PVA glue.  I did practise this first on a scrap Gelliprint and the method I found the best was to put the glue on the Gelliprint , carefully lay down the stamped tissue and smooth out with a paintbrush with more glue on top.  If the tissue paper creases or tears , which it did for me several times, just take it off and try again with a new piece. 

I used the Round Tree stamp in the centre of my bowl and one of the hares from the Woodland set around the inside.  For the edging around the top and base of the bowl I stamped the Blocks of Fun several times and cut into strips of five squares. Finally a coat of acrylic varnish. This project was messy but lots of fun. Hope you like it.

Lesley x