Today we are starting a new series on our blog - Brand Ambassadors' Spotlight. Each month there will be a theme, a colour, a product, that will be a focus for our Ambassadors' projects. We would like to give you even more inspiration and to let the talent of our Brand Ambassadors shine.
This month the host is me - Tusia Lech - Finnabair DT coordinator and Ambassador - and I decided to make gesso our focal point. At first glance it seems to be "boring" with its plain, white colour, but when we start using it, it occurs, that gesso gives us many possibilities. Feel invited to see projects by Finnabair Brand Ambassadors and read their words below. Enjoy this inspiring journey!
I use gesso for almost each project :) Whether it is white one, clear one or black one - gesso is one of the most basic products for me. For today I altered Ringana, metal tin. First thing I needed to do was to prime this tin using Finnabair White Gesso. This action prepared the surface so I could work with other media too.
Than I decided I would like to give a go to one of the Finnabair's stencil and I applied Heave White Gesso through it. The result was cute, white stars. This texture was really great, but when everything dried, I decided to go to a different direction :D
I have built my focal point using Mechanicals and moulds and I used White Gesso one more time - this time I mixed it with Liquid Acrylics. The result was pale, non-transparent, pink acrylic paint that I used to cover everything. There were a few more steps with drying time in between and the end result is wintery, angelic tin that I love. I hope you like it too.
Gesso was my gateway medium to mixed media. I still remember my first little gesso jar, I guess it was about 50 ml and I used it mainly to white splashes. But then one afternoon, about nine years ago everything changed. I realized that I could use mediums with a heavier hand as “it’s only paper”. I was mainly doing scrapbook layouts then and the thought hit me. If I ruin the paper with mediums, the memories are still preserved in my head and the photo is one of the last things I add. So, I decided to lose fear and went for it! I’m still continuing on the same road.
As you know, gesso is so much more than just white splashes. Naturally, it’s good for that, too, but you can conjure up different things with it. Originally, it’s a primer, used to make a surface for the painting preventing the colorants being absorbed into the canvas and turning the surface unicolor and ideal for paints to get a grip. Because most gessos nowadays are acrylic based and they rather stick to the surface than absorb into it, you can even create texture and relief layers with it.
For this project I used gesso as the primer, as I was working on wood, but I also transferred the lady’s face using white gesso. It’s similar to gel medium transfer, just another kind of medium for it. First you need to paint a layer of gesso, add the laser printed image on top printed side down and then smooth the image to gesso. Then comes the tedious time to let the gesso dry thoroughly and after that you can rub the paper away using water and your fingers. I also used gesso on top of the embellishments. Some I treated more heavily, turning the piece into white, priming it with gesso, to others I only added some dry brushed hints of white. The raised floral pattern on the sides of the piece are also done using gesso.
My inspiration to the colors and patterns in the project was partly icons, the religious pieces of art, and a mosaic of Theodora, an empress of Eastern Roman Empire. The mosaic in question is from basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna. I first saw the photo of the mosaic in my history book a long time ago, but its strong visual form has since been stored in my brain.
Reverse canvas with an Angel made by cardboard and covered with scrapbooking papers from AB studio is my today's project. I created my shabby background using a technique with black gesso, impasto colors and powder as well as crackle paste. Around the canvas I glued different laces and I painted everything with white gesso and icing paste frosty pearl.
Angel: first I applied a layer of clear gesso on the papers and then I applied icing paste rose gold and old silver thorugh a stencil. When the icing paste was still wet I put glass glitter platinum.
Then I created my composition in the centre using chipboard elements, metallic embellishments from from Finnabair collection and the new xmas collection of mitform castings.
Finishing my composition I painted everything with white gesso except of the main subject in the centre that is scrap paper from Ab STUDIO that I sealed with clear gesso.
The main color was white and black with angels so the colour love to have was in white grey pinkish and black. I used Liquid Acrylics: black and avocado green as well as the metallic embelissements covered with sparks chest of gold.
At the end I added beads mixed with gesso and sparks chest of gold, glass glitter platinum and xmas decoration in natural style, and all the embelissemments I highlighted with wax old silver.
Gesso ... so obvious...we can’t create without gesso right? Until you start to experiment and discover how creative you can get with it. What a challenge! I quickly decided to completely create out of my comfort zone.
I mainly worked with Liquid Acrylics and mixed them with black and white gesso and paper paste. What an awesome effect! This paint is so beautiful and greatly pigmented, it blends perfectly with white gesso and even with black gesso you can create stunning colors!
We hope you liked our new idea and we inspired you to use gesso in non-standard ways.
Have a great evening!