Mixed Media Maps- “City of Oaks”
We use maps pretty much every day. Whether they’re printed on paper or interactive on our smart phones, they help us understand the direction were traveling. Try as we might, it’s pretty much impossible to keep track of our direction by ourselves.
More than that, though- an up to date map is a culmination of years of history, and represents the stories of thousands of families and individuals who, through their struggles with the topography and use of resources, their industry, politics and beliefs, have all influenced the shape, size, and surroundings of each block.
What a symbol a map is!
I wanted to capture some of this symbolism in these mixed media maps. I focus on the big picture, but the variations in the layers of paint and ink, the outline of the streets, and the feathered ink and paint splatters bring to mind all the individuals who, recognized or not, have made each city what it is. Each layer is like a generation, which stacked together makes the city richer, fuller, and fascinating.
Mixed Media Maps- “The Bull City”
I began with the cities where I live. It’s so interesting to me that after living here for a few short years, and meeting a tiny percentage of the people who live here, that I can feel so connected to these cities. There is good and bad here, dark history and history to be proud of, but it all makes these cities what they are. They aren’t perfect, but they are beautiful, and the maps of these cities (and of every place around the globe) represents that truth.
Maps, and the meaning behind them, are works of art that are functional, but also emotional. They evoke memories of people as well as places, and those places and the history behind them influence us in ways we can’t begin to understand. And I love them for that.
What city should I paint next?!
Here’s a link to my project video Master Plan– this will give you an idea of the process behind these pieces.
So, I’m kind of a noob. I realized that I made these canvases over a month ago, and I have yet to share them with you here! I’m so proud of them, too. I really pushed myself and my ideas to create these scrapbook pages on canvas. I think they turned out really well, and so different from each other.
This one is obviously more a shabby chic/heavily embellished page. There are so many elements on this page- chipboard, paper flowers, texture paste, cheesecloth, stamping, ink, paint, gesso, and more. It’s so fun to build the layers of texture in pieces like this, though it is a struggle sometimes because inevitably I end up covering up some element I really love with something else. You can never get too attached to any one layer in this line of work… 🙂
Scrapbook Pages on Canvas
This canvas is a completely different style from the one above. Simplified, more modern, and very clean, this piece has some texture paste, ink, and a chipboard piece with the photo on top. That’s it!
I used a compass to sketch these circles out in pencil, then drew over them with my calligraphy pen and different colors of india ink. A spritz of water, and you get that awesome splattered/feathery quality that makes the surface so yummy looking. 🙂
Thanks for checking these out!! Have you made any scrapbook pages on canvas? Leave a link to your blog- I would love to see them!
I have had such a difficult time writing this post. I don’t know what it is, but every time I try to type out the meaning, or the process of this particular mixed media piece, every word that pops up on the screen is terrible, and I hate it. It’s taken me a week to get to this point, and I can truthfully say I have never had such a hard time sharing a piece of my art, which is funny because the artwork itself was so easy to create- my ideas were flowing, I knew exactly what I wanted to do, and the materials cooperated (for the most part). Yet now when I want to share what I’ve created, how I did it, and the meaning behind it, I can’t seem to do it.
So, I won’t go into detail on the meaning behind my piece, as I was originally intending to do. I’ll share with you the process, and listen to your ideas and questions on its’ meaning in the comments. (hint, hint!)
Abstract Mixed Media Piece with India Ink and Quilling
My initial idea with this piece was do make it completely black and white. I began by taking my compass and drawing a variety of different sized circles on the surface of my 20*20 canvas. I used my calligraphy pen to draw over the circles with black india ink, then spritzed the wet lines with water from my water bottle to feather the ink.
It was at this point that I had a flash of inspiration. If I outlined one of the smaller, central circles with colored ink, it would really pop against the black and white. In that moment of inspiration, I knew what this entire piece was supposed to represent, and from there it affected every choice that I made- elements, colors, words, my paper pieces- everything.
Here’s the full process outline-
- I began by drawing circles with my compass, being careful not to punch any holes in the canvas.
- I outlined the outside circles with black india ink, then while the ink was wet, I spritzed them with water.
- I did the same with the colored circle, though I used 3 colors- purple, turquoise and teal india ink.
- Once the surface was completely dry, I went over the circles again with the same colors, adding a rough, sketchy outline to the edge of each circle.
- Lines of “lightning” from the main circle reach out to colorize former gray areas. I used some fast and messy calligraphy along those lines, adding specific words.
- Quilling pieces next!! Just a few black and white ones.
Everyone responds to art differently, and even when you add specific ideas into your work, others will see different things. I would love to hear anything that comes to your mind. What does this mixed media piece mean to you?
Thank you for reading, and especially for sharing your thoughts below!
I am so excited to show you this mixed media jewelry piece I’ve finished! I’ve been inspired by, and hoping to create, some jewelry pieces for quite a long time. Though I do have a lot of ideas for pieces in the future, I love that I have been able to start with some necklaces inspired by my signature quilling style.
Each of these pendants will have a paper background, then my quilled paper pieces will be added. I noticed in my earlier trials that once i add the resin, the background become fairly translucent, so I started adding a layer of white gesso to the metal pendant before adding any of the paper, and it helps to keep the paper from appearing too clear.
One of the biggest issues (I say issue for lack of a better term- it’s not really an issue per se) is that my quilled paper pieces are higher than the depth of the pendant, and so I add resin to the top of each paper piece first, allowing it to cover the paper from top to bottom, before I add resin to the entire piece. Gravity works against me a little bit, but the resin takes a while to set, and so I’m able to work for a while to make sure every bit of paper is sealed.
What do you think? I love how abstract and unique it is, and all of the pendants I’ve been working on. I know they will lead to the creation of new and awesome ideas in the future, as well.
This piece is available to purchase- if you’re interested, head over to my online store.
Have you created any mixed media jewelry? Do you have any suggestions for me as I continue to work on this series? I would love to hear your ideas and see your creations!
Mixed Media Jewelry with Quilled Paper Pieces
I’ve always been more of a neutral color fan. I feel like it’s only been in the past year or two that I’ve really branched out and worked in lots of different colors. I love off-whites and brown backgrounds. I love black text on beige paper. I love kraft paper and chipboard, and I love the timeless, sophisticated quality to all of the above.
So, every once in a while, I go back to those first loves and just go crazy. This canvas blends so many of my favorite things- neutral color paper with text, white and brown accents, text washi-tape, ink-stained muslin, etc. It’s pretty awesome, in my opinion. 🙂
Neutral Color Scrapbook Canvas
What I love most about this layout, is the negative space that’s actually full of text and other images. I whitewashed the whole thing with Distress Crackle Paint, but you can still see everything underneath. Yet now, with the whitewash, it’s almost as if everything else is on top of a fresh, clean canvas. I love that this piece has that look and feel.
- The first step was to cover the surface with various papers. Everything piece I chose was covered with text.
- I darkened it with some walnut ink, and then paint the surface with Tim Holtz’ Distress Crackle Paste, for a crackly, whitewash effect. Awesome. 🙂
- Quick Tip- if you use crackle paste, I would recommend sealing it with some gel medium. It can tend to flake a bit, especially the larger cracks where you used more paint.
- The sides were a bit rough, with some paper still sticking over, so I took some time and sanded all the edges down.
- Washi-tape was added to the left side; different lengths in all different neutral colors and patterns.
- My map stamp and one of my script stamps were perfect to add a few more interesting details.
- I stained some strips of muslin just a bit with more walnut ink, and added them over the washi-tape.
- Next it’s time for the background paper, and the picture.
- A piece of flair goes pretty well with everything else, huh? And how about those IKEA pencils?! I knew the handfull I grabbed would come in handy.
- This piece wouldn’t be complete without a few ink splatters!!
Anyone else out there a huge fan of neutral colors? I’d love to hear what you think, and see your projects.
Thanks so much for visiting! I hope I inspired you a little today. 🙂
Hi! I’ve missed you! Now that our show is over, I have all this free time again and I thought I’d share some of my latest projects with you, these ones all done for Scrapiniec. They are a Polish chipboard company, and they have some of the most unique designs I’ve seen in chipboard. There are some amazing artists on our team, and I am so lucky to be able to count myself among them. Are you on any design teams? I would love to check out your projects!! Drop a link below.
Design Team Projects
I have 3 design team projects to share with you. The first is an altered box that I created as a thank you gift for a friend. The chipboard and flowers really dress it up and make it look super classy.
I created this layout with various types of chipboard from their collection. My favorite part, though, are the frames over the photos. The chipboard comes packaged securely, laser cut but still clinging to frames and sheets that allow them to travel without getting bent or ripped apart. Once I had taken the chipboard out of its’ frame, I was left with quite a few extra pieces of square shaped frames. So, I decided to use them! And what a great effect it turned out to be.
The last of my recent design team projects I’ll share with you is my scrapbook canvas from this week. I made this, along with several others (stay tuned for those!) as thank you gifts for the directors of and producers of the show we just finished. I love being able to give meaningful gifts that will last forever. If they love them half as much as I had fun making them, then they will be cherished for years to come. 🙂
Thanks for visiting! I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas- what inspires you the most? What is your favorite type of mixed media art? Let me know!