Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Painting Cotton

A friend of mine had found a painting of cotton that she really liked, and wanted to know if I could try to duplicate it. Since I saw "palette knife" all over it, I jumped at the chance. This is the biggest painting I had ever done, so a good challenge was in the offering, too. 20X30!

First I painted the canvas Van Dyke brown. I then bought some acrylic paint and realized I would likely need more and bought sample sized latex paint at Home Depot much cheaper.

I put my paint on my very sophisticated palette.

I went to town with my palette knife and my off white base coat.

I then added some dark blue and some tan because I knew the off white wasn't dark enough for the cotton.
This simply was too abstract, so I got a paper towel dipped in water and beigy paint and even things out.

My first try was ok, but it lacked depth and I didn't add enough stem to the cotton.
I also decided to tone down some of the color at the top and left side. For better or worse, this was my finished product. Oh! I forgot to add that I used cotton balls dipped in gesso for my cotton!

This was a fun project and very easy. I hope you give it a try!

Friday, May 27, 2016

How to make a Graduation display table

To make my daughter's Graduation table display, I knew I wanted to go BIG! I also knew I didn't want to destroy or make copies of so many photographs. So, I had seen somewhere on the internet how to make a large black and white MECHANICAL PRINT or ENGINEER'S PRINT from FEDEX for very little money. When I say large, I mean "Large"! 36x48 inches large! This size is the exact size of the large display boards you will find at Staples or Office Depot. So I used a "Proportional Scale" to find out how large I needed to make my file on my desktop publishing software. For 36 X 38 to be large enough to work on in condensed form and keep the quality highest, my software went up to 20 inches. That meant I had to find out, on the proportional wheel, what would 36" be. My wheel told me 15X20 or 42% of the finished size.

The best thing about doing this is the cost! It was right at $10 for a 36X48 print!
This is what it looked like after being printed at Fedex. I needed to trim a little, but I loved it!

My next step was to attach it to my display board. I knew that would be tricky since it's so big. I decided to do it in sections. Which meant measuring and cutting each "panel", then attaching with spray adhesive.

So off to the deck I went to avoid any over spray. I ended up with this. I burnished the image with a Pampered Chef scraper!

I then did the two fold sides. (Didn't take a picture of that, but you get the idea.
This was my finished display before adding pictures.

As you can tell, there were sections of "white" on the edges. I knew I needed to get rid of them and decided cutting them with the band saw would be quicker than using an exacto, but you could do either if you had the same problem.

Next, I added pictures down the side.

* OH! One thing I forgot to mention is the great font that I used for my daughter's quote. It is called Bromello from Best of all, it was a free download! I LOVE this font!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Nashville Skyline, painted

Well, this was a fun project! First, I used burnt sienna acrylic paint to do a back ground. I went light in the center and then mixed some umber to darken the paint for the background.

I used my vinyl cutter to cut an image of the Nashville Skyline that I found in a Google search. Then I adhered it to the painted background. I used off white/cream colored paint and a palette knife to follow the Cricuit cut stencil's outline. I trailed off at the end to give it that "fading out" look at the bottom. Then I painted a "water line" below, leave a break for the free hand rendering of the General Jackson in the water. I love Nashville!

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Chalk Paint Dresser and Vintage Graphics

The one REALLY good thing about getting ready to get new carpet, besides purging, is being able to paint without a drop cloth!!!! YEA!!!

I've had this dresser since my son, now 20, was a toddler. It was given to us by some neighbors. It's been blue for a boy and, after my daughter was born, pink for a girl. Then white as an all purpose "catch all". Lately it's been our TV stand in the Bonus Room. (Sorry, no pictures from then when the room was CLEAN.)


Here are the supplies needed:

That's chalk paint from Walmart in "Plaster" and "Elephant". I was going to paint it all "Plaster" but changed my mind at the last moment. I also thought I do some serious distressing on this and put deep red in the crevices. Well, wrong. Changed my mind.

Here's how I started out:

First I had holes to fill. I sanded, but the paint kept flaking and I didn't have any wood putty. I was in a hurry, so I sanded as best as I could, and just filled the flicking paint chips with sealer and am hoping for the best.

Next, I added the red that I ended up not using.
Did I mention we are getting new carpet and packing and my house is a wreck?

THEN...and this is the best part of all. I went over to and downloaded this beauty. You will want to download the "Mirror Image" if you are going to do the Citrasolv transfer method.

THEN...and this is the second best thing of all. I went to 
This is a magical place that can turn your JPEGs into any size you need...for free!!!! I printed out the graphic ON MY LASER PRINTER (an inkjet will not work) and I was ready to begin the transfer.
First I measured and taped it down. It's import to keep things secure as you will be lifting to check the transfer.
All taped and ready to begin. You need a cup for the Citrasolv (that's it in the bottle), Q-tips to transfer a small amount at a time of the Citrasolv on to your paper, and a metal spoon to burnish the image down. I've tried other things and a spoon works perfectly.

With the Q-tip wet, go very sparingly on the Citrasolv or it will smear. Lift back after burnishing to check. You may need to re-rub. My laser jet printer is in sad shape, so my ink is not as dark as I would like. I'll fix that in a minute.
This is what it looks like before you remove everything.

I didn't take pictures, but I had to go over parts with the "Elephant" paint and a small paint brush, as well as a fine tip Sharpie. I then sealed the top with the Mod Podge Antique Sealer and sprayed the front and sides with a Matte Sealer.

The most expensive part were the drawer pulls! I knew what I wanted and it cost me around $30! Yikes! But, I do think it completes the piece and I'm pleased. Of course, I am tired from doing packing and painting so what do I know?

Painting Blue Willow Vase & Roses

I thought this would be really hard, but it wasn't. To make the vase, you paint a vase that has a cast shadow the color of what would be reflected near it. For example, whiter near the light source, orange near the apricots, darker in shadow. The "Blue Willow" is basically just a squiggly design you come up with and slightly go across with a dry brush to blend. The Roses?, well, YouTube is a magical place!