Hello!

Welcome (back) to Mixed Media Artist!

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, 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.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Making a texture sheet for mixed media paintings and collage


I have always enjoyed a day of making background papers.  When you allow yourself to play with no pre-conceived idea of what the results will be used for, all kinds of interesting things can emerge.  I gathered together a large number of supplies...nowhere near as many as I could have, but more than were absolutely necessary.

Do you need all of these things?  Nope.  Be guided by your own supplies and your own aesthetic!

Materials & Tools

Watercolor paper, cold pressed
Tissue
Freezer paper
Plastic vegetable bag
Corrugated card board
Cheesecloth
Waxed paper

Acrylic colors:
Hansa yellow, medium
Cobalt teal
Cobalt turquoise
Permanent violet, dark
Dioxazine purple
Quinacridone burnt orange
Cerulean blue
Yellow ochre

Matte medium
Walnut ink
Extra heavy gel medium
Opaque fiber paste
Gesso
Rubbing alcohol


1. Iron some tissue paper to a piece of freezer paper and print out some interesting textures.  I used some photoshopped black and white close-ups of bark.  Adhere them tissue side down to a piece of watercolor paper with matte medium.  Let them dry completely before attempting to peel off the freezer paper.



2. Spray walnut ink through stencils onto some areas.  When dry, cover the entire sheet of paper with a thin layer of matte medium.



3. Add texture to other areas of the sheet.  I used extra heavy gel medium pressed with corrugated card board (shown above), and other materials like opaque fiber paste and gesso, matte medium and cheesecloth, and matte medium and waxed paper (not shown).  Remove the texture materials pressed into heavy gel immediately, but leave items embedded in regular medium until they are close to dry before removing.



4. Add a thin layer of yellow acrylic to the whole sheet.  It will puddle somewhat on the textured areas.  Allow to dry.



5. Paint textured areas as you choose.  Allow to dry.  On some of them, I sprinkled rubbing alcohol to make the paint bubble.



6. Add a glaze of any color you choose to unify the sheet.  I used cerulean blue.



7. Optional - I decided that the colors were too bright and bold for my current mood.  There's nothing wrong with step 6, and perhaps it could have been the final result.  But I added one more layer of yellow ochre to the entire sheet, and was very happy with it.  Before doing that, I scanned step 6 in photoshop, so even though I no longer have the physical piece, it exists in digital form for me to use if I ever want to.  Isn't technology great?

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 09, 2016

All Other Ground - a collage, part two

All Other Ground
Cyndi Lavin, 2016
Last week, I showed you the techniques for creating the rocky postcard shaped pieces.  Today we're going to look at how to finish it up!

Materials & Tools

Watercolor paper, cold press
Tissue paper

Golden Acrylics:
Cobalt turquoise
Thalo turquoise

Matte Medium
India ink
Water
Acrylic fixative

Foam brushes
Small paint brush


7. Paint another piece of watercolor paper with turquoise colors.  Allow to dry.  Add a dilute layer of matte medium and top with tissue paper, forming a diagonal line and allowing plenty of wrinkles.  Allow to dry.  Use dropper or brush to apply India ink along the diagonal line.  Spray lightly with water and allow the ink to run downwards.  Allow to dry completely.  Spray with acrylic fixative, and add a layer of matte medium to the top.



8. Mess around with the placement of your shapes.    



9. This is what I chose.  Paint some matte medium on the back of your rock shapes and allow to dry.  Darken the white edges with ink or dark acrylic paint.



10. Use a bit of matte medium to stick them in place and press with an iron to fuse the postcard shapes to the background.

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, May 04, 2016

Book review: Favorite Fabric Bowls, Boxes and Vases


Here's a silly question...Do you have fabric left over from various projects?

Well, how would you like to learn some fun new ways to turn your scraps into bowls, boxes, and vases, perfect for beautifying your home, or the home of a loved one?  In Favorite Fabric Bowls, Boxes and Vases, Linda Johansen writes:
I have had so much fun with the instant gratification of making fabric bowls, as well as the artistic side of combining fabrics and threads and shaping a bowl to fit my mood at the time. I use the bowls throughout my house as functional art on tables and counters—holding treasures, candles, and food. As I played with making fabric bowls and taught others how to make them, more possibilities kept popping into my head. It was a natural progression to leap from fabric bowls to fabric boxes.
Once you've read through the basics and learned the easy to follow techniques, you'll be all set to launch into the projects.  The book will be out in June from C&T Publishing, but it can be pre-ordered now!

Monday, May 02, 2016

All Other Ground - a collage, part one

All Other Ground
Cyndi Lavin, 2016
When I started with this collage, I had absolutely no idea where it was going.  Each step seemed to just suggest the next one to me, although at the time I didn't know what the end game was.  Not until it was finished did the idea come to me from the old hymn, "All other ground is sinking sand."

As soon as I thought of that phrase, the point of the collage seemed obvious to me.

I've included information on the colors and shapes I chose, but you should chose what you like best and just use this tutorial for its techniques rather than to make a duplicate.  Make something meaningful to YOU!

Materials & Tools

Watercolor paper, cold press

Golden Acrylics:
Titian buff
Quinacridone violet
Sap green
Dioxazine purple
Quinacridone gold
Burnt sienna
Raw sienna
Carbon black

Walnut Ink spray:
Eucaluyptus
Terra cotta

Matte Medium
Gesso
Water
Rubbing alcohol

Foam brushes
Cutting mat
Box cutter
Clear ruler


1. Glaze paper with Titian buff.  While still wet, add patches of color.  Allow to dry.  Spray with inks (I used a vegetable bag as a stencil).  Allow to dry.  Top with a layer of matte medium and allow to dry completely.



2. Add a light coat of gesso and spritz with water.  Spray with alcohol to create a foamy texture.  Allow to dry completely.



3. Add matte medium to back and allow to dry completely.  Tear up.



4. Paint a piece of watercolor paper with golds, browns, and blacks.  Arrange torn pieces on top and adhere when satisfied.  Add a bit of matte medium to stick them in place and press with an iron to fuse the medium from step 3 to the brown background.



5. Use diluted dark brown or black around each torn piece to blend them in.



6. Cut a window in a piece of scrap paper the size you want and Cut out pieces that are about postcard sized.

Part two, next week!

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, April 27, 2016

Faux patchwork quilt block


I shared this tutorial awhile ago on Beading Arts.  It's a two-parter, and the link takes you to part one :-)


Monday, April 25, 2016

Dragonflies dance

Cyndi Lavin, 2015


Black marker, Derwent Inktense pencils, watercolor paper


Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved.

Related Posts with Thumbnails