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Showing posts from September, 2017

Book review: The Visual Guide to Crazy Quilting Design

Ok, either you love Sharon Boggon's work, or you're wrong! :-) But seriously, how could you not love her work?  Just look at what you'll find in The Visual Guide to Crazy Quilting Design : Sharon's main goal, I feel, is to teach you how to tell a story with your quilts, how to make every part of the process serve the art.  To that end, she starts with an overview of the encrusted crazy quilting style, discusses how to design that journey for your viewer, and then moves to piecing and stitching.  The second half of the book teaches you how to do beautiful variations on basic stitches and how to incorporate beads, buttons, and more. I don't often quote parts of the books that I review, but I just want you to have an example of one of Sharon's many many (many!) tips that you will find in this book.  I recommend it for beginners and experienced quilters alike: "A good, quick way of finding a color scheme is to select a favorite patterned fabric. T

Beading Arts tutorials - part two

  Earrings tutorials Last week was part one of the list of tutorials on Beading Arts , covering beaded arts, jewelry, and other wearables. A charoite bead embroidered pendant Jewel bead embroidery pendants Bead making tutorials Earrings tutorials Waves - a beaded necklace Bead stringing tutorials   Run-Around Wrapping - a beaded necklace  A practical lesson in choosing colors for your beadwork (2 parts) Peace on Earth - a beading tutorial Night Sky - a beadweaving and wire necklace tutorial Orinoco Flow - a bead embroidery tutorial   Pink yarrow, flame, and greenery necklace (2 parts) Single earring trend for 2017

Into the Woods - a mixed media painting tutorial

Into the Woods Cyndi Lavin, 2017 Prints for sale I used a batik-style background for this piece.  The instructions can be found at the link above.  It's super-easy to do, using waxed paper and some non-waterproof black ink .  After adhering the textured paper to your substrate and ironing it, I would advise adding a few coats of acrylic spray to prevent any running.   I used heavy-bodied acrylics diluted with water (not medium) in the following colors: Permanent violet dark , Quinacridone magenta , Hansa yellow medium , Phthalo green , and Ultramarine blue .  I spread it around on my piece using pipettes .  I used paper towels to blot it frequently, and to build up layers of color. After drying thoroughly, I spritzed the piece with water and used regular water proof India ink in a pipette to drip the trees and add thinner branches.  I let it dry and then adjusted the paint colors as needed. This post contains affiliate links.   Copyright 2017 Cyndi Lavin. All r

Beading Arts tutorials - part one

    Amethyst tree necklace tutorial Tutorials covering topics like wearable art, beading, beaded jewelry, etc generally reside on the Beading Arts blog.  Every so often, I like to give you a list of them here in case any of the topics interest you!  Here is the first installment in chronological order: Bead embroidered rhodochrosite pendant Amethyst tree necklace tutorial (3 parts) Pearl and crystal cuff bracelet A simple spiral rope in blue Bracelet projects - wirework Bracelet projects - fiber Bracelet projects - beadweaving and stringing Bracelet projects - bead embroidery, part one Bracelet projects - bead embroidery, part two  Bracelet projects - mixed media

A Light in the Forest - a mixed media painting tutorial

  Last week I talked a little about adding some depth to an abstract by shading the elements in a way that draws the eye into the picture rather than just across it.  Today's piece uses the same technique with a different color palette, and in a much larger size so that the elements could be spread out a bit more.  I wanted to see if that would make a difference in the perception of depth.   The background was rolled with Green gold and allowed to dry.  I then painted around the center, moving outward, with Sap green , Phthalo green , and Turquoise phthalo , these three being both mixed with white gesso and plain.  I then dripped in the most "distant" trees, white ink with a couple drops of turquoise paint.  After they dried, I sponged the whole piece lightly with Iridescent copper (not shown above).   The next step is to drip in the "middle distance" elements, this time mixing the white ink with a bit less turquoise.  When they were dry, I

Autumn Glory - a mixed media painting tutorial

Autumn Glory Cyndi Lavin, 2017 As my obsession with trees continued, I had a pile of paintings that just didn't work out.  I used one of those as the base for Autumn Glory , although that's not really completely accurate since I repainted the entire thing!  However, just to be completely honest, the background was very dark, and maybe a little bit of it shows through the lighter colors near the middle.  Or not :-) This piece was the first of my experiments with adding more obvious shading to the trees to suggest distance.  I didn't want to go too far into the realm of realism, but on the other hand, it's good sometimes to apply what you know to your abstract work as well.  Abstract doesn't mean "rule-free"! The center portion was rolled with Hansa yellow opaque and white gesso .  I let it dry and then sponged on two strengths of Pyrrole orange and gesso, and of Dioxazine purple and gesso.   Mix waterproof white ink with a few drops of

Beading Arts book reviews - part three

  The books that I am sent to review that cover wearable art, beading, bead jewelry, etc are found on the Beading Arts blog.  Every so often, I like to list them here so that if you are interested in those topics as well as painting, collage, and quilting, you can bounce over and see the ones that catch your eye! In Chronological order: The Embroidery Book Micro-Macrame Jewelry Simple Metalwork Jewelry   Casual Bead Elegance   Jewelry Made with Wire + Fiber   Jewelry Making with Resin   The Art of Quilling Paper Jewelry Earlier lists: Part one Part two          

Spring Blows In 2 - a mixed media painting tutorial

Spring Blows In 2 Cyndi Lavin, 2017 Prints for sale I liked the colors of a piece that I shared a few weeks ago ( Spring Blows In 1 ) so much that I did a second one using a slightly different technique. This time I dripped the waterproof black ink trees first, allowed them to dry, and then sprayed them with fixative just to be sure.  I mixed up the following acrylic colors with silicone and medium, but instead of pouring puddles, I poured thick lines: Medium magenta , Hansa yellow opaque , Pyrrole orange , Titanium white . I topped these with a thick line of white paint, swiped across and swirled.  The paints were not thick enough to form cells, but they still did lots of neat skittery little things that I loved.  After adjusting some of the colors, I let it dry overnight, and then dripped a few more black trees. This post contains affiliate links: Dick Blick Copyright 2017 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profi