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Hi, I'm Cyndi, and I've been writing and updating  Mixed Media Artist since 2005.  If you're a new visitor, welcome! Come tr...

Monday, June 27, 2016

Dish soap resist experiment


The June/July issue of Quilting Arts had an article in it by Julie Booth on using dish soap as a resist on cloth.  I've done that before, and it suddenly occurred to me that it might work very nicely on paper as well, so I set off to experiment.

Materials & Tools

Dish soap (I used Dawn, because that's what I had!)
Watercolor paper
Stamps
Black acrylic
India ink
Colored acrylics, Inktense pencils, etc

1. This first card was stamped all over, simply using my finger.  After allowing it to dry, I painted it with 1/2 India ink (left) and the other half thinned black acrylic.



2. After rinsing off the soap, you can see that both sides faded, but the ink side faded the most.



3. Because it's pretty faded, softer colors showed up really nicely when diluted and brushed over the piece.



4. In the spirit of experimenting, I made another piece that used undiluted black acrylic.  I really don't like the look of this one nearly as much, but it may have its uses.



5. The take-home lesson for me was to not make the black acrylic too dark, and experiment more with different strengths of colored acrylics and pencils.  I like the spiral piece the most, and will probably use it in something soon.


Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Monday, June 20, 2016

The Pedigree of Honey



The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy.
Emily Dickinson, 1924 


Materials & Tools

Painted background paper
Various collage papers already painted, like "Lavender" from last week
Vintage bee image from The Graphics Fairy

Photoshop


1. Choose and scan all images and the background that you wish to use.  Scan at least at 300dpi if you are going to want to be able to print out your piece in the future.



2. Size and arrange digital collage pieces, and fade the edges.  Adjust colors as needed and play with the opacity of each.

3. Another way to integrate pieces that don't fade in nicely is to cover them with another transparent layer of the background, and erase as needed to allow the image to show.

Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Don't have Photoshop? Here's your online answer...


I was contacted by the folks at Canva recently to make sure that I knew about their free online photo editor (I did not), and did I want to try it out? (I did).  Canva uses a simple drag-and-drop method with pre-programmed filters and actions which allow you to add images to your blog or website with a minimum of fuss.

Since it's online, if you are trying to do larger-sized files, say 300 dpi, you will lose some data.  Your photo will download as a 72 dpi image, and when you reconvert it to 300, it will be smaller than the original.   All the same, it's not meant to take the place of Photoshop, and it does a really nice job on quick resizes and special effects.  So try it out the next time you're looking for a quick drag-and-drop for your blog!

Monday, June 13, 2016

Small collage piece using lavender


I like to make small pieces and images that interest me as they occur to me, and not to wait for a full-blown inspiration beforehand.  Often, making the smaller pieces will end up being just the inspiration I need to start on the larger piece.  I have found, personally, that if I sit around waiting for inspiration, it eludes me.  Get to work on something, and...bam!  There is the idea :-)

Materials & Tools
Watercolor paper

Acrylic paints:
Raw sienna
Hansa yellow opaque
Titian buff

Spray bottles with water and rubbing alcohol
Walnut ink, eucalyptus
Bunch of lavender or other plant to use as mask
Black Pitt pen, medium point


1. Wet the paper.  Sponge with raw sienna and yellow.  Spray with water and then with alcohol.  Glaze with Titian buff in glazing medium.


2. Spray with eucalyptus colored walnut ink, using a bunch of dried lavender as a mask.


3. Add a few details with a Pitt pen.

4. Save for a larger project that needs a little collage piece.  I'll have one to show you soon!

Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Monday, June 06, 2016

See you real soon!


I'm taking a week off to visit with these goofballs!  See you back here next week :-)

Monday, May 30, 2016

September Morn - a collage painting

September Morn
Cyndi Lavin, 2016

Nobody was quite sure what the young woman was doing in Paul Emile Chabas's painting, Matinee de Septembre, and that made it a bit controversial.  Over the years, it was mostly dismissed as a serious work, although it hangs today in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Not too shabby.  Poor Paul Emile did not copyright her, so scores of reproductions were sold without him benefiting at all.

The image I used here came from the front of a piece of sheet music:

Matinee de Septembre, Painting by Paul Emile Chabas, France, 1911.
September Morn, Music by Henri I Marshall, Published by Jerome H Remick & Co, NY, 1913.


Materials & Tools

Pencils
Texture plates
Tracing paper
Acrylic spray fixative
Watercolor paper
Acrylic medium, matte and gloss
Image(s)
Bubble wrap
Sheet music
Tissue paper
Foam brushes

Acrylic paints:
Titian buff
Iron oxide
Yellow ochre
Cobalt teal

India ink




1. Use the side of a pencil to create some texture patterns on tracing paper.  Fill the whole sheet.  Spray them with acrylic fixative and allow to dry.



2. Cover the watercolor paper with a thin coat of light colored paint like Titian buff.  Adhere the image(s) with matte medium.  Brush some of the paint over the edges of the image.



3. Rip the tracing paper sheet apart and adhere the pieces to the background with matte medium.



4. Use iron oxide paint on bubble wrap and around the edges.



5. Add strips of sheet music using matte medium.



6. Add a layer of tissue paper with matte medium, allowing it to wrinkle.  Add areas of diluted yellow ochre and cobalt teal, and drip India ink around the edges.  Allow to dry and seal with diluted gloss medium.

Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Wishful Thinking - a collage painting

Wishful Thinking
Cyndi Lavin, 2016
This collage on watercolor paper was fun to put together from start to finish, but it wasn't until just after I added the crow that the name and the point came to me.  I had been discussing with a friend our tendency as human beings to want gifts that we don't have while undervaluing the gifts that we've been blessed with.  My poor crow is clearly wishing for a musical talent that eludes him.  Smart, clever, strong, and beautiful...he forgets about all of that!

If you'd like to try making a collage like this, use the colors and imagery that "sings" for you :-)

Materials & Tools

Watercolor paper, cold pressed
Tissue paper
Bubble wrap
Sheet music
Image(s)
Dixie cup
Matte medium
Gloss medium

Acrylic paints:
Titian buff
Iron oxide
Yellow ochre
Raw umber
Iron oxide

India ink
Foam brushes



1. Paint the watercolor paper with Titian buff and allow to dry.  Adhere tissue paper with thinned matte medium and allow to dry. Drip India ink and spritz with water to let it run.  Dry completely.  Apply a thin coat of gloss medium, followed by a "frame" of raw umber.  Add some yellow ochre on bubble wrap.



2. Add strips of sheet music with matte medium.  Accent with iron oxide, and with cobalt turquoise stenciled through a plastic vegetable bag.



3. Make marks with the bottom of dixie cup dipped in iron oxide.



4. Print out an image on sheet music (cut to size for your printer).  Adhere with matte medium.  Allow to dry completely.



5. Glaze with yellow ochre.

Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.
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