Saturday, June 29, 2013

What's Your Favorite Color?

I love blue.  Lots (but not all) shades of blue.  Right now I think my favorite is a turquoise shade, maybe closer to an ocean blue.  I use it in my art often and I sometimes feel like I have run out of interesting colors to use with it.

Well, I just found this website called Color Scheme Designer.  It allows you to select a primary color and then see other color combinations that complement the primary color.  Here is an example.

My BFF's favorite color is lime green.

Click on the color wheel to choose your primary color.  Then use the small circles above it to see all the different color schemes.  Does this look like hours of fun, or what?


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Making Fabric Paper

My friend and I decided to make fabric paper together.  We used a technique I learned from a video by mixed media artist, Beryl Taylor.  The supplies include muslin, glue, paint, brushes, and art tissue paper (not to be confused with regular tissue paper).
muslin, wrapping paper, scrapbook paper,
paper napkin, glue, and scissors

Lay out a piece of muslin (no bigger than a pillow case) and paint it with a coating of watered down glue.  Elmers glue works fine for this process.  I usually do this messy project on top of a sheet of plastic wrap or a dry cleaning bag.  You will have to move the whole piece in the end, when is it still wet, so make sure your plastic is portable.

After the muslin is coated with glue, lay out your paper pieces. I like to cover as much of the muslin as possible, but don't worry if there are small spaces. For this project I have used wrapping paper, scrapbook paper, telephone books, dictionaries, paper napkins, and candy wrappers.  The colors of your papers don't have to go together perfectly because you will be adding color later.  Cover all the papers with another coating of the watered down glue.

glue the paper pieces to the
glue covered muslin

telephone book pages work as well

The final layer is the art tissue paper.  Regular tissue paper doesn't work for this project because it is thin and easily rips.  Art tissue paper can be hard to find.  I ordered mine through Blicks.

Cover the entire piece with the tissue paper.  Next you will use watered down acrylic paints.  Fluid acrylics work really well for this project because you want the color to be transparent.  Cover the whole piece with the watery paint.  It's OK to let the colors blend and flow together.  If you overwork the piece at this point the tissue paper will start to tear so be somewhat delicate.  Don't worry if you have some bubbles under the tissue.  Those are inevitable.
cover the piece with art tissue paper
and paint on top of that

Let the piece sit in the sun to dry.  It will probably be overnight before it is all dry.
if possible, put the piece
in the sun to dry

The final product is fabric paper that is somewhat stiff and brightly colored.  It can be used for all kinds of mixed media projects.  My friend and I are going to make big paper flowers.  I will post a picture when they are done.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Bead & Button

I just returned from the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  It's the fifth year I have attended (or maybe the sixth).  I was going to skip it this year, but my BFF flew in from Florida and I couldn't miss the opportunity to hang out with her.  As usual, the exhibit hall was filled with beautiful baubles that were hard to resist.

Here is the Beadin' Path booth (a vendor from Portland, Maine).

I bought some beautiful lampwork beads from artist Marcia Kmack of Cave Creek Glassworks.
Then there was the My Elements booth.  Oh my goodness, I can't resist these little rubber components. The items may not look like much in the Etsy store, but here are some inspiring samples from the booth.

Finally, there were some amazing pieces on display as part of the Bead Dreams contest.  Here are 2 of my favorites.
A corset made of coins!

A 365 project - embellished Carmex jars!
The creativity of the vendors (booths, displays, packaging), artists, and contestants was so exciting and invigorating.  I am back at home now pulling out my tools, beads, and components to see what I can make.