Wednesday, 30 October 2013

A Woman by Alan Scott



 
 

For this project I decided to go back to my Project Book which I have started. Like a lot of us, I do have several books that are in various stages of developments. This one is A3 in size. I have a 12 inch by 12 inch one, an A4 one and I have just bought a Dylusions Creative Journal. I have the larger project book which I am eager to start to create with. I have a feeling that this will be the travel book.
Anyway, back to today's project. I wanted to do something around the main element which is a fab stencil from The Crafter's Workshop and is called Three Quarter TCW413. 

MATERIALS USED IN THIS PROJECT

Roll Low Tack Masking Tape - A3 250gsm ring bind project pad
Acrylic Paints: Eco-Friendly:  Aged Silver ~ Blue Sky ~ Storm Blue ~ Pure Copper ~ Pomegranate ~ Peony ~ Lilac
Water Mister Bottle - Old credit/store cards - Bubble wrap
Crafters Workshop Three Quarters Stencil ~ TWC Zinnia Stencil (a very good alternative Dahlia)
I used a Donna Downey 12 inch stencil here. The closest ones are by: StencilGirl
Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous: Spills and Splatters Stamp Set
Black Indian Ink ~ Pipette - Wide Nibbed Pen
Charcoal Pencil ~ Letraset Flex Marker Cool Grey 5Letraset Metallic Marker Blue
Print out of the Phrase used on good white stamping card (reverse side printed on)
Large Metal grips

 

LETS MAKE A PROJECT

 

 

The first thing that needs to be done is to protect the work that's already in the pad, as well as new pages. So some easy tac tape along the spiral end will help protect the rest of the book for 'over spill'. 
Once we have selected the pages we are going to use, with the aid of a good wide tip brush and some good collage glue, secure the paper onto the base layer. If you keep brushing the glue into the base, you can help stop the bubbles that can appear. However when it dry's (best to allow it to dry naturally) the bubbles should go away. 
Once the paper has been secured and the surface has dried, the next step is with the aid of scissors, just clean up the edges. I have found that the best way to help keep the paper flat is to use some big old metal clamps. You can get these at any good stationary store and are worth their weight in gold when you're wetting and re-wetting card/paper stock.  
Right then it's time to make the surface ready for our paints. Yep you have guessed it.. GESSO!
 
 

These are the colours that I selected for the base layer. I have tried to keep them in the same hue family. Okay, silver isn't a blue however a dark silver works just great with blues! We have to make the surface a lot easier to move paint around with. So fill up that mister bottle and just give the paper layer a quick spray. You don't want to saturate the layer, it's a lot easier to add than it is to take away. 
 
 

If you look closely ,you can see how much water has been misted - the paint is still together but the ends are just starting to blend outwards. To move the paint around, I am going to use the good old faithful not wanted credit/store cards. You want to use the plastic ones and not the compressed soft ones as they will start to loose their rigidity when wet.
 
 

I also dived into the dark deep corner of the craft room and pulled out some used bubble wrap. This is perfect for giving a large area texture and interest. The paint on the bubble wrap is not wasted, I just pulled out my new Dylusion Journal book and impressed the bubble wrap over two pages. I have started to build up layers in another book. Nothing when it comes to Inks, Paints etc.. is ever wasted, we can always use it to start a new project in the future. 
 
 

Using the bull dog clips, I let the paper dry naturally. I could have used a heat gun but sometimes that will curl up the edges, so when it comes to base layers I like to let the air do the job.
 
 

I finally got the chance to use this stencil. It's one that I have had my eyes on for a while and Laura had just managed to get in stock. It's one that I have seen used a few times by an artist called Donna Downey. She is a wonderfully creative artist who shows how to make projects freely.
 
 

By using black gesso and a soft blending sponge, I was able to go around the stencil. Also the soft sponge soaked up the gesso and it was easy to just dab around the open areas - also the pounding action will give you a texture.
The top right hand picture shows the black gesso and stencil. Now then you're now going to say 'What the Dickinson is he going to do that for?' Well there is method in my madness, I was and I did cover the image with white gesso and I was going to be very mucky and use my fingers to do this! 
 
 

As you can see the image is now white. Okay I have to fess up now and say the reason for this was two fold. Firstly I'm able to add flesh tones to the image and not have to fight over the base layer of blue. Secondly, as I had covered up the black gesso lines I was still able to see the faint lines. So when it comes to re-using the mask, I can see positioning as well as know where I can lay other stencils and not go into the flesh tone area.
 
 

This stencil is one that's been designed by Donna. I also thought that bright Neon colours would sit on the blue and not be swamped by the base layer. If you don't have this stencil, I have done a link in the products section to a maker of very interesting and creative stencils.
 
 

The pink and purple Neon colours sit nice and bright on the blue. When I was using the two ink bottles, I overlapped the colours so that in parts, they blended together - I wanted a 'grunge ink look'. 
Now the time to start building other layers of interest. For this, I used a very good set of stamps from Mr Tim Holtz. As you can see they are perfect for that loose free projects.
As I was using Tim Holtz stamps, I thought I might as well as use Distress Inks. By mixing and matching the inks, I'm able to build up little areas of interest - Oh I don't clean my stamps right away, like the masks they are then used in project books. Only when there are no ink impressions do I pick up my baby wipe to clean the stamp.
 
 

This set of stamps is unashamedly becoming a firm fav. The stamps are so versatile, they give you the freedom to make those marks some artist make with ease. Again I opted to use a Distress ink pad and a nice bright yellow. Now then, this wouldn't be out there but it's a layer that I wanted to do so that when you're looking at the project you're able to see things that are not easily seen from a short distance.
Your stamping impressions don't always have to be up in the fore but also think about the background imagery as well when building up a story. 
The final stamping layer.. a SPLAT! Also the white area we made acts as a mask and you're able to see how far you're able to stamp/colour.
 
 

Now we can start to build up the focal part of the project - the face. As I'm able to see the black marks below, using a charcoal pencil I'm able to go over the marks using the stencil as a template.  
The bottom picture shows the impressions I was able to make using the pencil. There was a small issue now and that was that the charcoal lines would in-fact smudge if left unprotected when it came to the colour layer. 
 
 

Now then, I know this is infact an after thought. I honestly don't know as to why when I was building up colour of the face I ignored taking photos of the paints I originally used. The face was done using a flesh coloured acrylic paint. The hair was done by mixing these two colours and then while it was still quite thick, on the paper using a wooden kebab stick, I just put lines into the paint so that I could give direction and not just leave the hair flat. The lips were done using a red watered down acrylic paint.  
Back to normal now.... The face was given a flat wash of acrylic paint as mentioned above. To make the black drawn lines permanent, I thought about using a Cool Grey 5 pen to go over the lines, thinking that this would keep the lines free from smudging. Got to say, it has so far worked, I guess only time will tell.
 
 

The edge of the white gesso area can still be seen, so once again I dived into the acrylic paint box and opted to pick out two colours that would make a halo of colour surrounding the head. Lilac was a perfect first choice. Then a bright pink was the second. They would work well together and make a barrier between the face and the blue background. 
 
 

To give more interest to the background, I wanted to use a gloss medium that would, when dry, catch the light at different times. Zinnia is a fab stencil for this (I have highlighted a very good alternative). Using the gel medium and a credit/store card, I manoeuvred the gel over the stencil, making sure that none was placed over the figure head. This was then left to dry on its own. I think if I had used a heat gun I could have caused the gel medium to bubble up like PVA glue can do. 
 
 

Now then this next step is a great big old leap of faith. We are going to be using black Indian Ink and a pipette. Using the pipette, we are going to draw circles onto the surface. Then when that's done, we have to put a squirt of black in at the base. By doing this and then standing the book up and tapping the base onto your crafting surface, the ink will start to run down in drips. If you're not comfortable at doing this on your project, get some scrap and practice. Don't forget even on scraps you can cut them out at a later date and use then as part of another project. Nothing is ever wasted when it has another use. 
I wanted to fill the circles in with something and not just leave them open. For things like this, these little tubes of magic are perfect. They also come in a range of colours that can be used for most of our projects. They are a great mistake making fixer as well. When dry they form a dome. They just look right and as if they were meant to be there.
 
 

I wanted to give the drip lines some definition, so these metallic pens are great for highlighting. They also for a water based product cover almost everything. 
 
 

Now for the phrase I was going to use. I had to dig deep and do some research as to the perfect phrase. I found this one by Coco Chanel. I'm not going to tell you, as it would spoil it, so I'm going to make you look at the project again lol.
The printing was done on the reverse side of the paper. This side has a rough feel and I did not want the ink to blend in a smooth manner but rather a blotchy way. 
By using a blend of two colours I'm able to give the text some colour, also no two would be the same in colour, contrast or depth.  
Rather than cut the words out, the good old fingers and ripping came back into play. I did not want a clean cut out wording look but a messy uneven look.  
When it came to edging the ripped out pieces, I was not looking for perfection. The opposite. I didn't care if the darker blue ink pad coloured the face of the wording. I went all out to make that happen, in some not all. 
 
 

To secure the wording in place, there is a wonderful glue that will stick almost anything to anything. It also has the benefit of being able to glue small areas with the aid of the fine nozzle that it has attached.  
The final thing to do to the project was to go back to the Indian ink and with a broad nibbed pen, make boxes around the words. Again I was not looking for perfection, it had to be loose and not clean cut straight lines.
 

There you have it, a project that's sitting in my expanding project book. I'm not scared of making mistakes in the book ,it's all about a journey and the materials and equipment that I'm using. Some items are new to me, so here I can experiment, learn and then hopefully pass on my journey to you, so that your able to understand that little bit more about a product.
Any questions please send me a message and I will do my best to help you resolve that question. 

HAPPY CRAFTING

Alan

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