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Scars + Stripes - a collage painting tutorial

Cyndi Lavin, 2017

This piece evolved from an earlier version that didn't quite work out the way I wanted.  Many times that happens, that pieces don't look like what I had envisioned, but this one just plain failed!  But still, pieces were salvageable, and I was really happy with the way it eventually came together.

I started with a piece of brushed steel tape on paper.  After sanding it, I added 2 thin layers of Gold iridescent acrylic paint with 30% gloss medium.  This was sealed in by a layer of pure gloss medium and left to dry.  I then mixed some glazes to shift the gold color: Permanent green light and Quinacridone crimson, both in 1:1 mixtures with glazing medium.  This is rubbed onto the gold background very thinly with a soft cloth and allowed to dry.

To this background, I added black tar gel designs (a few drops of black ink added to tar gel), and when that was dry (overnight), I flooded it with a muddy mix of Gold interference, Gold iridescent, and Quinacridone magenta in lots of water.  It took several pourings and dryings before I got the colors I was after.

For the central piece, I used a similar technique, but started with a black gessoed background.  Here above, you see it with just the black tar gel added.

As with the other two pieces, I flooded it with the a different muddy mix, probably about four times, allowing it to dry each time.  This mix consisted of Interference violet, Iridescent gold, and Quinacridone violet.  

When the pieces were all the colors that I wanted, I cut them out with a straight edge razor and mounted them to a large piece of heavy watercolor paper that had been prepared with Carbon black acrylic.

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Copyright 2017 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. The tutorial only may be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.


Robbie said…
Who would think you could use anything "muddy" and get fab results!!! Thanks again for the share!
Cyndi L said…
Hahaha!! It does look like a complete mess when you pour it, but the different particles settle out as it dries :-)