Monday, November 16, 2009

Mixed Media backgrounds with household items

Here's a quick tip for the day..... If you have excess bubble wrap, you can use it to add the dotted texture you see in a lot of mixed media paintings. If you don't, you can make your own stencil with paper and a hole punch. You can also use the lid of a spice jar. Just make sure it is cleaned well first! I have found that yellow mailers (a used one if you are conserving paper/resources) work well because the paper is thick and stiff. You can use the lid of the spice jar to make large circular stamps on the background.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Drying Racks for Paintings

I finish all of my acrylic paintings with a glossy acrylic "varnish" by either Liquitex or Golden, my two favorite brands. Since this is the final layer that seals everything, you especially want it to dry without blemish. I recently bought a set of Wilton's Stackable Cookie Racks and they work great! You can fit two small sized paintings on each one, or stretch two of them out to support a larger painting. They come in a set of 3 and also collapse for storage. Most places retail them for around $10. You can find them at JoAnn's Fabric & Craft , Target, and a few other places. However, if you can find them at your local craft store, you can use a coupon to get them at anywhere from 40-50% off when they are not already on sale. JoAnn's and Michael's often have such coupons. Look in their flyers or visit their websites for info on how to print their coupons.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Paint Palette Tips

Let's face it....paint can be expensive. I want to avoid wasting paint, and make it last as long as possible when working on a piece of art. I prefer to use Acrylic Paint, so today I will share some tips on what kind of palette to use with it. The first picture shows the usual paint palette you can buy at any art or craft store. Sure, they are pretty cheap, but if you want one that comes with a lid, you'll have to fork over more money. Why would you want a lid? Most people I know, don't always finish their painting the same day they start. Maybe you mixed up a rockin' color of green and you don't think you'll be able to get the exact same color tomorrow.

The best way to preserve Acrylic Paint that I have found, is to add a few drops of water to the mixture, put a lid on the palette, and pop it in the fridge. Yup, I said THE FRIDGE. The cooler temp prevents the acrylic paint from setting up. You could always put plastic wrap over your lid-less palette, but that is a big mess and air still gets in.

My solution? Chinese takeout!!!

We have found that many Chinese restaurants around us put their food in these handy re-usable plastic containers....WITH LIDS!!! So, you get tasty food and a free paint palette. They seal tightly. Make sure to clean them well to remove any residue before use. When you are done with your project, simply rinse them out with warm water. If you have allowed your paint to set up, wait for it to dry, and peel it away. Any remains can be soaked in warm water and wiped off with a paper towel.

Have any palette tips to share? I love comments!

Monday, November 9, 2009

My first post

The idea for this blog has been circulating in my head for a long time now, and today, I finally said..."Aw, what the heck! Let's DO it!" I will be adding more info over the next few days and hope to be able to provide a wealth of knowledge to help artists create economically and to find ways to reuse things that may otherwise become trash in our landfills. I hope you join me for the ride! I will be looking for guest participants in addition to sharing some of my ideas with you. Talk with you soon, Lori