Monday, February 24, 2014

Mary C. Nasser's Beautiful Clock ... and some "Boxed Vines" is the webpage where you can read the full story and see the step-by-step how-to photos of this project dreamed up and executed by Mary C. Nasser.  I love her color combinations and I love the way she decided to create a gentle sense of motion, using the feather designs, on the left half of this artwork.   I was so impressed upon first seeing this piece that, until Mary's commentary drew my attention to it, I didn't even notice that the feathers had been created with my 6"X6" Feathers stencil.
The above stencil measures 6"X6" and is available here ...

 And now to veer in another direction--
Above:  another stencil of mine -- the 9"X12" Boxed Vines.

Above:  a Gelli Plate print created using this stencil.
 Above:  I created this greeting card cover in my PC, but I show it here to give ideas as to potential ways of using parts of the Boxed Vines stencil in hands-on art-making:  To do so, I would use masking tape to cover the parts of the stencil I want to keep from printing.  Then after doing numerous overlapping prints (with acrylic paint on a dauber), I would come back in with a small brush and use the same acrylic paints to fill in the "bridge" lines of the stencil.  Boxed Vines is available at
Above:  another greeting card cover,
 showing another possible way to use
this stencil in hands-in art-making, altho
this particular example was created on my PC.
Again, some of the stencil would be
covered with masking tape to keep it
from being printed.  This example shows the
Boxed Vines design as the top layer in a multi-
layer print.  If I were doing this by hand,
I would use the Gelli Plate to create the
background blocks of color.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Striking Gold

In my last post, I showed a mixed-media collage created with the help of several stencils, one being Mary C. Nasser's 9"X12" Map stencil.

And this is what that stencil looks like, having been used with that gold metallic paint, after previous uses with other acrylics--

The gilding gleams in a way that can't be captured here, but believe me, it's so beautiful that I'm thinking of cutting up this stencil to use pieces of it in other mixed-media collages.  Of course that will mean ordering a replacement from STENCILGIRL(TM)Products -- but I had been planning a new order anyway, ever since seeing the new designs by Carolyn Dube and Michelle Ward; take a look, via the link below, and you'll see why --

Veering back to the subject of gold ...  I've just repeated an earlier experiment, wherein I used white pearlescent paint on watercolor paper (140-lb. hot-press) and followed that with stencils and alcohol inks.  This time, I've used gold metallic paint, loving this rich shade that Golden makes--

After the paint dried, I added stencils--

These include my 9"X12" Borders #2 stencil, on the far right --

-- and a portion of my brand-new 9"X12" Boxed Vines stencil;

and my 6"X6" Mimosa stencil (upper left)

and my 6"X6" Kaleid stencil.

I very lightly pounced thru the stencil openings with a Ranger alcohol ink applicator and just a few drops of Ranger alcohol inks, pictured above.  Below is the sheet of gilded paper after the stencils were lifted off.

I then cut out each of the stenciled areas; pictured below, except for the Mimosa print--

Above:  For this print, I used a portion of my 9"X12" stencil Boxed Vines.

Above:  For this print, I used one of the three borders in my 9"X12" stencil Borders # 2.

Above:  This print was made with my 6"X6" Kaleid stencil.
My next step was to add more alcohol ink to the Kaleid print shown above; for that I used a Sponge Dauber by Imagine Crafts because of its round shape:
All of these cut-outs will make their way onto greeting cards and gift-tags, if not now, then by Christmas.
Thanks for visiting!

Friday, February 14, 2014

No title yet ...

... but, still waiting for a title, here is a new artwork of mine...

Stencils used to create this untitled mixed-media collage include:

Warped Holes by Lizzie Mayne;

Use Your Words by Carolyn Dube (I used this beautiful stencil backwards, on purpose);

Feathers and Lattice by Daniella Woolf;

Map Stencil by Mary C. Nasser;

and a yet-to-be-released 9"X12" stencil of my design, Twinship --
This Twinship stencil -- coming soon to STENCILGIRL(TM)Products -- holds warm memories for me.  The image is derived from a photo I took in the historic village Smithville, NJ, near Atlantic City.  My friend Mary Ann Russo and I had driven down there to meet my "email pal" -- "penpals" no longer exist, do they? -- Cindy Powell.  You can find her ART STUDIO blog on my left sidebar.  Cindy lives in Utah but she and I "met" online years ago and have been friends ever since.  That day, Cindy and her husband had driven up from Maryland, where they had flown in to visit with other old friends of theirs, left from the days of long ago when Cindy had lived here in the East.  (She has lived everywhere at one time or another, including Japan.)  I never look at this stencil design without thinking of you, Cindy!

Afterthought:  There is one small web-like area (black on red) at the center, in the above mixed-media collage, that may appear to be created by stencil-use, also, but that is actually part of the collaged material, a web-like ribbon purchased from Artistic Artifacts.  (The other collaged materials are papers that had been prepared in advance of my painting and assembling this artwork.)

Words to Live By

I got this idea from someone else, and I wish I could remember her name -- my apologies, whoever you are!  I used one of my favorite stencils by Carolyn Dube -- Words to Live By -- with acrylic paints and Sponge Daubers (by Imagine Crafts) on a leftover half-sheet of self-adhesive address labels:

 This is what it looks like now, while still intact.  I plan to individually use the labels as envelope-back stickers on snail-mail greeting cards -- I would much rather use stickers than lick the back of an envelope! 

Carolyn's Words to Live By is available here --

-- and while there, check out Carolyn's brand-new stencil series based on a beautiful assortment of buildings.  These new designs were a fantastic idea and I only wish I'd had it before she did!  But her muse is younger than mine and gets around faster ...

Above:  My first layer of paint being applied to the sheet of labels, thru Carolyn's Words to Live By stencil.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Brand-New "Boxed Vines" Stencil -- More Playful Ideas

Above:  my brand-new 9"X12" stencil Boxed Vines, available here:

More artwork created with this stencil:
Above:  a collaged greeting card cover, created with a Gelli Plate print from this new stencil.  Note:  The purple vine at center stage is freehand-cut.  It complements the stencil design but is not made from the stencil itself. 
Above:  the envelope made to match this greeting card.  I've collaged the scrap onto the far left side to leave room for both the return address and the outgoing address.

Above:  another greeting card cover made in the same way -- using a piece of Gelli Plate print and a (green) freehand-cut complementary embellishment.  Note:  The large white vine-shape (part of the Gelli Plate print) was also created with a freehand-cut vine.  The light aqua print -- showing vines and a partial border -- is the part that was made using this new stencil.
Above:  a collaged greeting card cover.  The dark orange background was created with a Gelli Plate and the brand-new stencil Boxed Vines.  The green vine in the foreground was freehand-cut, in the same style as the stencil, but was not made from the stencil itself.
Above:  the ivory vines-and-border pattern was created with this new stencil -- a Gelli Plate print.  The overlay of two white "ghost" vines was also printed on a Gelli Plate, using freehand-cut vines that resemble the stencil.
Above:  This is the Gelli Plate print that was later cut up for making greeting card collages, as shown earlier in this post.  The pale aqua part was created with the new stencil Boxed Vines.  The two white vines, an over-print created with the same Gelli Plate, were made from freehand-cut vines, not from the stencil itself.

This new stencil and many others are available here:

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

All that gleams ...

... may not be gold, but it could be pearl ... or pearlescent paper.


You may not be able to appreciate the glowing beauty resulting from this simple technique, till you try it yourself -- no photo, scan or video can  capture it as well as seeing it in person.  The gleam of this painted paper shows thru the translucent alcohol inks, and the inks themselves form mottled patterns.  The combination of the two is a treat for the eyes!

Supplies:  watercolor paper or other sturdy, smooth paper; Ranger alcohol inks; Ranger alcohol ink applicator; brush or brayer; pearlescent paint; masking tape; stencils

First step:  Use a substrate of hot-press (smooth to touch) 140-lb. watercolor paper.  Lacking that, you could try using heavyweight cardstock.

Brush or brayer on a layer of white pearlescent acrylic paint. I used Golden's but other brands are available.  Make sure the whole surface is evenly coated; this may require 2 coats, with dry-time between.

Click on the above image to enlarge it.

The gleam is more visible in the photo below...

After this dries, hold, or secure with making tape, stencils onto the substrate.  Then add just a few drops of alcohol inks to the ink applicator and do several test-prints on scratch paper to take out any excess of alcohol ink.  It's far better to have too little alcohol ink on the applicator, than to have too much, since the runny nature of this ink makes it tricky to use with stencils.  Ink wants to run under the edges of the stencil-cuts to create blurry images.  Use a light touch when daubing the inks thru the stencil openings.

Above:  my 6"X6" stencil Heron.
Above:  my 6"X6" stencil Osprey Wings.
Above:  my brand new 9"X12" stencil Boxed Vines.

Below:  After the inks have been applied and the stencils have been lifted:

My first attempt at this resulted in "run-under" blurs like this:

But with a little practice, I learned the right amount of ink to use (very little)  -- and I learned two ways of dealing with run-unders.
(1.) They can be camouflaged:
Above:  I sprayed acrylic inks over the entire print to camouflage the run-under areas. 
Another example:
Above:  This print made from the stencil Osprey Wings had under-runs along the edges.
Above:  This is the same image after I sprayed it with acrylic inks.
Above:  the Pat Dews mouth atomizer and acrylic inks that I use with it to create sprays.  Another option would be to use Color Bloom Sprays or Ranger's Color Wash sprays.
(2.)  Run-unders can also be painted out:
Above:  my 6"X6" Gingko stencil was used to make this greeting card cover; I had two areas of run-under, which I later touched up with a small paintbrush dipped into the pearlescent paint.

More examples showing alcohol inks on pearlescent paper:
Above:  my 6"X6" stencil Ferns was used to create this greeting card cover.

Above:  my 6"X6" stencil Flowers Version 1 was used to create this greeting card cover.
Above:  My 9"X12" stencil Ivy Frame was used to create this greeting card cover.
All the above stencils, and many more, are available here at STENCILGIRL(TM)Products: