Friday, 2 December 2016

Two Words

December's here, My Friends!
For many of us this is a month when a lot of creative things are going on - December Daily practice, crafty Advent calendars, cardmaking, list making, thinking about dreams, plans and resolutions for 2017.
All this is obviously very exciting but... let's not run around too much! ;) Shall we pause just for a moment?
Take a seat, take a breath and find a moment to appreciate this incredible art piece (or even 2!) that Gayle's sharing with us today...
Do you have any special words that resonate for you? Any wishes for the world and yourselves? We hope you feel inspired to express them creatively. We'd love to see them! Drop by our Open Studio facebook group and share your Art with us!
Hello lovely Finnabair friends.
The last month of the year and of course for some of us, the celebration of Christmas.
For my project this month I have been completely indulgent and worked with three of my favourite things - wooden blocks, image transfer and collage.
But it’s Finnabair’s Texture Paste in Gold Crackle that has created the richness in these simple wooden blocks. For any of your Christmas projects this year, Gold Crackle Texture paste is a must. The process to these blocks is simple, I have included a few steps, but they are processes that I know you are all familiar with by now.
For me, this project is about how just one medium, used very simply through a stencil, can add so much warmth, texture and a little bit of magic. :)
Here are two more views of my Words Block - front and right side & right and back side:

My blocks come from a friend who is a furniture maker. They are off cuts, all different shapes and sizes and often quite rough.

No.1 The blocks get a coat of Heavy White Gesso. For my image transfer, I have chosen two “angel” images from the internet and printed them out onto regular photocopy paper.

No.2 For the image transfer, give the wooden block a coat of Soft Gel (either Gloss or Matte) and the front of the image a coat of Gel as well.
Place the image, face down onto the wooden block and smooth out very carefully from the centre to the sides, pressing out any air bubbles. Let dry completely. Once dry, use a baby wipe to gently rub away the white surface paper and reveal the image underneath (it will be in reverse). I love the muted, imperfect softness that this process gives.
No.3 Once you have rubbed away all the surface paper to reveal your image, add some stamping. I have used the Vintage Vanity “Book” Clear Stamp on both blocks.

No.4 Collage on some music note paper using Soft Matte Gel.
No.5 Cover the sides and back of the blocks with patterned paper using Soft Matte Gel as the adhesive.

No.6 Add extra texture and colour to the surface papers with Art Alchemy Acrylic Paints - they're so thick and in beautiful rich colours.
No.7 Add more texture to the sides with Art Extravagance Texture Paste in White Crackle.

No.8 Using a stencil apply Texture Paste in Gold Crackle.
A muted, soft, imperfect detail of the transfered image.

I added some metal and wire with beads.
The beautiful stars come from Finnabair's Mechanicals Barn Stars set.
First I painted the “Barn Stars” with Art Alchemy Ancient Coin paint and then sprinkled with Art Ingredients Art Sugar in White for some extra shimmer.

All metal embellishments were attached using Heavy Body Gel.

I have also used an old (but one of my all time favourites) Finnabair “Doily” stencil with red ink to add some pattern detail down the side of the block.

Also some splashes of gold ink.

Another view of the "Joy" block -

a metal name plate, wire with beads and again -

- Art Extravagance Gold Crackle Texture Paste used through a stencil.

The back of the blocks.
Art Extravagance Gold Crackle Texture Paste applied through a stencil and also in combination with silver embossing enamel, using Finnabair Vintage Vanity “Frilly Lace” Clear Stamp.

My two words - “Peace” and “Joy” - have seemed very elusive and in short supply this year, in a world that at times seems to be out of control.

But I genuinely and sincerely extend them to you all now, and, in whatever way you may celebrate the end of this year and the beginning of the new, may it be filled with only Peace and Joy.

Gayle xx

Products used:

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

In My Eyes - journal project

Hi again my dear ones.
That's right, I'm back home from my travels, planning to take some downtime and enjoy my home, studio and family life for a while... It's hard to express how important it is for me to be able to visit you, meet you all in the classroom, encourage to create and watch you make beautiful things. I love how it is boosting your confidence and fills your hearts with joy. It does fill my heart with happiness and it is the balm for my soul. It's priceless.
During my classes I'm not only trying to help you explore mixed-media techniques but also find your own voice and express yourself in your natural way. I believe it is much more important than creating artwork that would be considered to be "pretty" or "appealing". Creative process should bring us happiness, but also relief, de-stressing, ability to speak up our mind... it is all there!

Today I'm sharing some of the journal pages, which are great illustration to the statement above. They were made with no other intention but to play, to express my feelings, clear my head and give myself permission to breathe. They were never intended to be published too - but somehow they fit perfectly into my current situation and mood.

Both pages were done around one topic - "eyes" and are freestyle interpretation  of course. There weren't many techniques used - just as much as i needed to tell my story.  Page above is based on transferring technique - I used Art Basics Soft Matte Gel as my medium for that and I have to admit I love the watercolour pencil effects I got working on the Art Basics Clear Gesso!

This page is based on  elements from 7 Dost Studio "Fortune-teller" collection, scraps of thread and fabric and finally some art mediums: Art Extravagance Rust Paste, some tea stain and colourful mist, tiny bit of Glossy Accents.

It makes me a bit uneasy to see how close these pages are to my situation now, perfect illustration indeed! I guess this is the REAL power of art journaling - ability to evoke emotions.

Here are some of the products I used - all listed from our Mixed Media Place Online Store:

Hey! Don't forget to visit us on Friday to see new, fabulous project and tutorial from mysuper talented Creative Team!
Sending warmest hugs

Monday, 28 November 2016

Rusted Jewelry Display

Hello again Friends!
November has been really exciting with all the beautiful artworks from my new Creative Team.
Grab a cup and spend a moment revisiting these inspiring posts: Athanasia's vintage art journaling, Gayle's 'tendrils' of excess thought assemblage, Karolina's textural queen bee, Kasia's nostalgic canvas, Kassa's vibrant vintage girlies, Marta's journaling in 3D, Sanda's mysterious fossils and textures.
Aren't they all amazing?! I'm feeling really lucky and grateful to be supported by this bunch of talented Artist!

Last post this month belongs to John - a grand finale to our month of introductions. :) I have a feeling you will absolutely love John's creation - enjoy!
Because I work in a variety of different mediums, I like to refer to my art as "mixed media fusion" where I can combine my love of building colors and textures with mediums and incorporate it into bookmaking, 3D pieces, jewelry and paper crafting.
Here's my first project for Finnabair Creative Team - A Rusted Jewelry Display:
Besides using my favorite Prima products for creating projects, I’m always on the look out for objects to incorporate. This is one of my thrift store finds – a blank jewelry display. I couldn’t pass up the price for only $1.99 and knew that I could transform it somehow into something amazing! Here's what it looked like 'before':
One of my favorite Finnabair products that I love to use is the Art Extravagance Sculpture Medium to transform an ordinary object into an entirely new work of art with flowing texture of fabric.
It’s quite easy to use the Sculpture Medium to form and shape fabric.
For this project I used the Neutral Beige Sculpture Medium along with the light weight muslin from the Art Basics Fabric Pack.
Simply pour the Sculpture Medium into a container, enough to fully saturate the fabric because the medium not only shapes the fabric but acts as an adhesive as well. I have found that this is one of the few products that I actually wear gloves while working with just to avoid having to clean my hands.
The beauty of working with the Sculpture Medium is that there is plenty of working time to create as little or as much texture with the fabric. Many times I simply drape the fabric down and let the fabric take its own form and shape.
For this jewelry display I started at the top around the neck and worked my way down to the base, wrapping the fabric around to the back. Once I felt that I had the look that I wanted, I used a heat tool to set the fabric.
I have found that this will set the fabric enough to continue adding paints and other mediums, but the fabric will continue to stiffen up over the next day or two.
Just like real rust on metal, building a beautiful rust color and texture takes a little bit of time.
With a brush, I used the Brown Rust Rust Effects Paste as the base color on the fabric, applied generously. I quickly heat set the brown, which when dried as a beautiful matte finish with a nice texture.
Using a dry brush technique, I then began highlighting areas with the Black Berry Art Alchemy Metallique Paint. Once dried, I highlighted with Art Ingredients Rust Mica Powder using my finger.
With the base coat applied, now the rusting of the fabric could begin! For the next layering of color, I applied the Red Rust Paste with a brush randomly to add more color and texture then heat set.

Once dried, I first highlighted areas with Metallique Emerald Green followed with Metallique Turquoise paints to create a funky green/blue contrasting rust color and then heat set.

Using the Yellow Rust Paste, I highlighted the fabric to give even more rust color and additional texture. In some areas that I felt had too much lighter colors, I simply added a little Brown and Red Rust Effects Pastes.

I could spend hours creating different color combinations and building textures – it is quite addictive! To add a little more metallic shimmer and highlights, I randomly applied Copper Mica Powder.
Using the Rust Effects Paste on fabric brought a completely different finished look to this project with just the right amount of texture that didn’t overwhelm the fabric.
Normally I would incorporate a variety of different Mechanicals into my projects, many times using texture paste as an adhesive to hold them down.
Since I want the jewelry that will be displayed on this piece to be the true focal point, I decided to only use one of the Mechanicals from the "Plated Labels" set around the neck of the bust held into place with a piece of brown satin ribbon.
I’m beyond excited at the results of this project and how it is the perfect background for my completed jewelry pieces, like this one which was colored using Metallique acrylic paints and highlighted with Green Mica Powder before being set with resin to complete the cabochon that I then beaded around to create this necklace.
I hope this project has inspired you to get creative with Sculpture Medium with fabric, or even creating your own stunning projects using the Rust Effects Pastes.

Always remember to share your projects with ALL of us for inspiration on the Finnabair & Friends Open Studio Facebook page or use the #finnabair hashtag on Instagram!
Until next time!

Products used: