At the moment

The beginning of the school year had us all whipped and it’s taken about two weeks to get into some sort of schedule.  We are still working out some kinks but things should start to settle down as of next week.

LittleMan is going through a growth spurt, suddenly being all arms and legs, as well as a creativity spurt.

Things like this have been appearing all over the house with ominous signs that spell “Please do not touch”

MaskWEb

Upon enquiry, we got a shrug and this cryptic answer “It’s a monster mask”.  This one is taped on the side of the bookshelf next to the front door.  Hubby and I are wondering if this is some kind of emergency monster grab mask for such occasions as would warrant the use of a monster mask….like before leaving for school.  I may able to tell you more after tomorrow morning….

Since we are on the subject of detecting, our cunning detective skills have finally provided the answer to a question that had us gripped all summer “Why are there holes in our kitchen curtains?”  Fascinating stuff as you can imagine, the kind that keeps you up at night.

The culprit was caught this morning red-handed, or should I say, curtain-wrapped.  Claws are being used in the wrapping process and when trapped, pulled vigorously until something (ie the curtain) gives….Never would have imagined that such a small cat could cause such damage…

Catcurtain

I’ll finish this post on a sneak peak of a painting I did for a very good friend’s birthday.

Detail-humming-bird-2              Detail-humming-bird-3

It was done on a square canvas and I enjoyed every minute of the experience, even though I was very pressed for time.  I have to confess it’s one of my favourites.

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Work in progress

Work in progress by fiscorner
Work in progress, a photo by fiscorner on Flickr.

Last September, I followed an online course which threw me for a loop. While I loved every lesson, I struggled to find a way in which they could blend with what I do. After struggling for a while to complete the four paintings I had started, I left them aside for a while. In March, I chopped them up, hoping for a new perspective. I came back to them every now and then, glued some paper, added this and that but I was still unable to take them in any direction. Finally, yesterday, I added an extra layer with stencils, sprayed some paint, dabbed modeling paste and things finally started happening. Today, I decided to paint a face on this background. It’s not finished but it needs to be set aside for a while. In the meantime, I will get to work on the remaining 5. Once my cat stops using them as a mattress, that is….

Addicted again

Well, what can I say…once again, I have discovered a new technique I can’t get enough of. Since dabbling with the faux glass technique, I’ve been going through shrink plastic and making pendants like there’s no tomorrow. I’ve had a few unfortunate misses but a whole batch of successes too.

Here are the latest additions to my collection. And just in case you thought one addict in the family is more than enough, I have managed to share the bug with Littleman. He is the proud creator of the heart pendant and has pronounced himself satisfied with my glazing effort. Knowing him, he’ll give the pendant a thorough inspection tomorrow morning just in case. Can’t blame him….like mother like son!

shrink plastic pendants, a set on Flickr.

Pendant heart1Pendant mapPendant 1 sunpendant lotus1Pendant lotus sunLittle pendants sun

Jelly frenzy

I am always one  reluctant to jump on the bandwagon, so much so that by the time I have decided that I might actually like to jump on it, the bandwagon has been and gone!
So when everyone started raving about gelli plates and gelatine printing, I was somewhat adamant I would not get sucked into that, no thank you. But then, I saw some pretty amazing prints with lots and lots of layers. And I am somewhat obsessed with layers.
So I decided I would give the whole thing a whirl.
Mixed water with agar agar, poured and ten minutes later, tada! Here was a lovely squidgy jelly plate for me to experiment with.
I loved it! I loved it so much I spent an entire week end doing print after print. And then another week end, and another.

Let’s just say, I’m hooked…

I won’t inflict every single of my prints on you. I made far too many for that (and I will be making more in the near future…insert manic laugh here). Here is just a quick selection of some of them. Now all I have to do is find a suitable project for them.

Jelly12Jelly10Jelly9Jelly11Jelly1Jelly2
Jelly3Jelly4Jelly5Jelly6Jelly7Jelly8

Gelatine prints, a set on Flickr.

Faux glass pendant

I have been a busy bee lately, trying to fit as much art as I can in my life.  Last night, I came upon this absolute gem of a tutorial, courtesy of the equally gorgeous Tammy Tutterow:

http://tammytutterow.com/2013/05/tuesday-tutorials-faux-fused-glass-pendants/

I was instantly smitten and itching to try making some of my own.  Tonight, I took the opportunity of littleman having no homework to fish out my shrink plastic, round up a few stamps, my utee and set to play.

I made these two little pendants.  The one on the left is made up of a transparent piece of shrink plastic stamped with writing, and a shrink plastic butterfly coloured with alcohol inks.  The one on the right is made of three butterfly stamped on a clear background and coloured with colour pencils.

shrink plastic

Time to play with Utee then.  I must confess that I don’t own a melting pot. I have never seen the need to make such an expense.  I may rethink my position in the future.  For tonight, a little non-stick pan was good enough.  I hooked my pendants to the little chain that normally holds together my tea infuser and dipped my shrink plastic pieces in the hot utee several times, one at a time until it was completely coated.

And boy, am I in love with the result!  The pendants look coated in a thick layer of melted glass, the imperfections of the utee dripping just adding to the overall look.  They are shiny, glassy, glossy and just amazing looking, and all of this literally in the blink of an eye!
shrink plastic

shrink plastic

And since I hadn’t quite settled on a definite idea for a mothers’ day present, this was the perfect opportunity.  A little jump ring, a ball chain necklace and voilà!  I’m all set to give my mother her present tomorrow.

skrink plastic

And this is a tutorial I am going to revisit again and again.  The possibilities are endless…as endless as my supplies of shrink plastic and utee in any case.

Heart Journal 5

This month, over on the Heart Journal blog, we were challenged to use textured tin foil.  I had never worked with tinfoil and was really looking forward to working with it.  The first hurdle I had to overcome was the embossing.  I unfortunately don’t own any embossing machine so I winged it.  I traced and cut some grungeboard shapes into thin cardboard and glued them to my heart.  I then glued the scrunched up foil on top of it and carefully traced around my shapes with a cotton bud to make sure the foil adhered to the shapes properly.  I wanted to go for an antiqued metal look so I gessoed and applied black acrylic to my heart.  The result was way below my expectations so I gessoed again and went for another colour.  A couple of layers of colours, some sanding and oil pastels later, I glued a little picture framed in foil and some words.  I loved working with tinfoil even if I didn’t manage to achieve the look I wanted.  I might buy thicker tin foil next time and give it another go…

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Ce mois ci, sur le blog du Heart Journal, l’imposition était d’utiliser de l’aluminium de cuisine texturé.  Je n’avais jamais utilisé d’aluminium et l’expérience me tentait bien.  Le premier souci que j’ai rencontré, c’est l’embossage.  Je n’ai malheureusement pas de machine à embosser alors j’ai improvisé.  J’ai tracé et découpé des formes en grungeboard sur du carton fin et je les ai collées sur mon coeur.  J’ai collé l’aluminium froissé par dessus et j’ai bien appuyé autour des formes avec un coton-tige pour bien coller l’alu aux formes.  Je voulais faire un coeur en métal vieilli alors j’ai appliqué du gesso et de l’acrylique noire.  Le résultat était bien décevant alors j’ai remis une couche de gesso et j’ai choisi une autre couleur.  Quelques couches de peinture, un peu de ponçage et des pastels gras plus tard, j’ai collé une petite image encadrée par de l’alu également et quelques mots.  J’ai beaucoup aimé travailler avec l’alu même si je n’ai pas réussi à obtenir l’aspect que je voulais.  Je vais voir si je peux trouver de l’alu plus épais et retenter…

Wax and more wax

Since my last foray into beeswax painting, I’ve been playing some more.  This week, I had 7 pictures on the go.  Four are almost done.  I am fairly pleased with them.  I feel I have managed to capture the mood I wanted quite well.  Lots of layers of old paper, lots of layers of yellow wax, and thick white wax, my favourite colour….I might leave the pictures as they are.  I might add a couple of cut-up words, a title.  I don’t know yet.  For the moment, I’m leaving them be.

The three others are far from finished.  One has received one layer of wax and is waiting for me to take it somewhere.  Problem is, I haven’t got the faintest idea of where I want to take it.  So it’s being shelved for the time being.  Number two is a hot mess.  The photo I chose was fantastic but the picture spewed by my inkjet had serious issues, notably that the black ink dissolves into greens and pinks…as a result, the picture, once transfered was pretty pale and nondescript.  One layer of wax, and another partial of white wax later, it is still nondescript.  There isn’t a lot I can do to rescue it, so I’m going to use it and experiment on it.  I will add other layers, perhaps even some more transfers and test how things work together (or don’t as the case might be).  Number three is a hot mess but at a different stage.  Same problem with the inkjet printout but the transfer has only received a layer of mod podge.  I will experiment on that one too, test stuff and see what comes out of it.  Oh well, you win some, you lose some…I’m enjoying the process and have plenty more things I want to try.  One thing is sure, though, I’m giving my inkjet a break.  I’ll test the printer at work see if it’s any better.

Many thanks to George Schick, Ken.W.Kiser, BardicImage, and  Nannabug54, for the use of their pictures, hosted at http://www.Morguefile.com

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Depuis ma dernière expérience avec la cire d’abeille, j’ai continué les expés…Cette semaine, j’avais 7 peintures en train.  Quatre sont presque terminées et je suis plutôt contente du résultat.  J’ai l’impression d’avoir réussi à rendre l’atmosphère que je voulais…de nombreuses couches de vieux papiers, de nombreuses de couches de cire jaune, et blanche, ma couleur préférée.  Je vais peut être laisser les peintures telles quelles.  Ou alors, j’y rajouterai un titre ou des mots découpés dans un vieux livre.  Je ne sais pas, alors pour l’instant, je les laisse tranquilles.

Les trois autres sont loin d’êtres finies.  La première a reçu une couche de cire et attend que je me décide à faire quelque chose avec.  Malheureusement, je n’ai pas la moindre idée de ce que j’ai envie de faire avec.  Je l’ai donc mise de côté pour le moment.  La seconde est une cata.  La photo choisie est superbe mais le rendu de mon imprimante jet d’encre avait de sérieux problèmes, notamment que le noir se dissout en rose et vert…ce qui fait que mon transfer était pâle et sans saveur.  Après une couche de cire et des ajouts de cire blanche, l’image est toujours pâle et sans saveur.  Je ne peux pas faire grand chose pour sauver l’affaire alors je vais m’en servir pour tester des choses.  Je vais y rajouter d’autres couches, peut être d’autres transfers aussi et voir ce qui fonctionne ou non.  La troisième est une cata aussi mais à un stade différent.  Même problème avec l’impression mais le transfer n’a reçu qu’une couche de mod podge.  Je vais l’utiliser aussi pour des expés et voir ce que je peux faire avec.  Une chose est sûre, j’abandonne les photos avec mon imprimante jet d’encre.  Je vais tester l’imprimante du boulot voir si les images sortent mieux.

Mes remerciements à George Schick, Ken.W.Kiser, BardicImage, et Nannabug54, pour leurs photos, déposées à http://www.Morguefile.com