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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, March 28, 2016

Easter poster

Cyndi Lavin, 2016

Galatians 6:14  But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.

Watercolor papers, collage, acrylics, digital.

Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Book review: Hand Printing



Hand Printing Studio by Betsy Olmsted is due out in the beginning of May, but I've been able to look through a preview pdf, and does it ever look good!  I believe that if you are interested in learning to hand print your designs onto fabric, paper, and other materials, this book will give you a fantastic beginner's overview to the process.


Betsy covers how to create designs that will print well, the surfaces, colorants, and tools that you will need, and all the details of doing block prints, screen prints, and transfer prints.  Included are 15 projects along with 12 original designs that you are welcome to use if you don't want to draw your own.  One unique topic Betsy covers that I don't see in a lot of other printing books is abstract designs.  You'll find some lovely ideas for these in the chapter on transfer prints.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Pears - an Inktense illustration

Cyndi Lavin, 2015

I've always been fascinated by cubism, so over last summer and stretching well into the fall, I found myself wrapped up in drawing a series of fruits and vegetables that later ventured into some insects too.  I used Pitt pens by Faber-Castell, and used Derwent Inktense acrylic ink pencils to "watercolor" them in. 

Copyright 2016 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Basic crazy quilt online course registration is open!



This is a free, self-paced course offered by the fabulous Kathy Shaw.  If you've ever wanted to try crazy quilting or to get better at it, here's your chance!  Hit the link on Kathy's name.  Registration is only open until midnight of March 18, so don't procrastinate!

Book review: Mixing Quilt Elements



Mixing Quilt Elements by Kathy Doughty is an intermediate level quilting projects book.  You will find lists of all the materials you need and step-by-steps on assembling the blocks, but there are not detailed instructions on how to do the quilting or finishing.  Since you can find these in any basic beginner's book, I don't consider this a problem, but you need to know this if you are just starting out.



Kathy's bold use of color and twist on traditional designs is very appealing to me.   Just look at these examples!  The book will be published by C&T Publishing, and it is just a visual feast for the eyes.  Kathy says that she and husband John drove all over hither and yon to get the photos they wanted.

Here are some of the skills you'll learn by working your way through this book: cutting accurate strips and wedges, English paper piecing, applique, and making bias strips.  The book

Monday, March 14, 2016

My new posters

Psalm 63:1
Using the technique that I showed you last week, I've put together five new posters for our church.  Each one features a verse or two from a Psalm which forms the lyrics of songs that we sing.  Even though all of the songs are older ones, we still use them in our music rotation from time to time.  "Older" doesn't mean they've lost their power!

Psalm 51:10, 12

It's a bit hard to read these in the small sizes I've posted here (each one is actually 36 x 24 inches).  Not all of the posters are easy to read from across the room either, even at full size.  The backgrounds are a bit "busier" than I usually use with text, but the idea was to draw people in and allow them to examine the texture and text close up.

Psalm 9:1-2

Psalm 73:25-26

Psalm 84:1-2

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.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Book review: The Art of Laurel Burch


Look, basically you either like Laurel Burch's art or...you're wrong!  What's not to like about her beautiful fantasy flora and fauna, people, and above all, cats!?

Now you can own 45 of her never-before-seen sketches, all designed and printed out for you to color.  Use Laurel's color palette or one of your own making.  There's so much to choose from, and no way to do it wrong.  First of all, the paper is made to stand up to even water media, although you may want to remove your chosen image from the book before you start throwing paint around :-)  Secondly, each image has a blank back, so you don't have to make choices about which picture you will color and which will be wasted.

So, if you are already part of the coloring book craze, or you've been thinking you oughta be...here's your chance!  Published by C&T Publishing, The Art of Laurel Burch can be ordered now!

Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Painted grid backgrounds for posters


Once you've got a pile of background papers that you are in love with, it's easy to forget how difficult it might have been to get there.  I had a lot of mis-steps before I started to achieve pieces that I really liked using this technique, but I luckily ended up with enough for a series of posters to replace the worn out ones at our church.

These backgrounds were painted the old fashioned way, with lots of mess.  I then scanned the ones I wanted to use and formatted them and the text in Photoshop.  Here's how I painted the backgrounds.



1. Paint entire sheet of watercolor paper (I used 140 lb cold press) with a light color and let it mostly dry.

2. Using dilute matte medium, add a layer of tissue paper which is wrinkled.  Drop India ink onto surface and move it around by tilting and with a heat gun.  Allow to dry.




3. Plan out a grid and cut tissue paper shapes a bit smaller than the grid shapes will be.

4. Paint the grid shapes quickly, leaving a border of the background color.  Timing for this step is really crucial: When they are about half dry, cover each with a tissue paper shape, letting the tissue wrinkle if you want.  Press the tissue down into the parts of the paint that are still damp.  "Paint" each shape with water to temporarily adhere the rest of the tissue to the drier paint and to add moisture for the next step.



5. Drop black India ink around the outsides of the tissue paper shapes, and a few splashes here and there inside them.  Let them almost dry.  The tissue that is only adhered by water will begin to lift as the piece dries.

6. Just before the piece is completely dry, rinse off in the sink, removing the tissue paper shapes and some of the ink.  Some of the tissue will stick (hopefully) to the paint beneath and have to be scrubbed off, taking some paint with it.  Wet the piece thoroughly.



7. Allow to dry overnight and iron it between pieces of parchment paper.  


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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