Monday, August 09, 2010

Mixed Media Monday - Memories

This is my creation for this week's Mixed Media Monday. It's my first week participating in MMM, and I was, at first, a little...afraid? I'm still a little hesitant to call myself an "artist," as you may have picked up on from my last week's Inspiration Wednesday entry...but I'm taking the jump! The theme for this week's MMM was "Memories," which is pretty broad. At first, I was thinking...oh, scrapbook page, easy peasy. But then, I was already working on this canvas, and realized how many memories it brought back.

The quote - "It is the sweet simple things in life which are the real ones after all," by Laura Ingalls Wilder... conjures up SOOOO many memories of hours and hours as a child spent watching (and reading) the stories of Little House on the Prairie. I used to (and still do sometimes, despite my obvious love for my laptop, cell phone, camera, etc.) think that I was born in the wrong century. I would daydream for hours on end about living in the olden days, when there was no electricity, when we could rise with the sun (and go to SLEEP when the sun went down!); when life seemed so much simpler, when life seemed more wholesome. I think of the world we live in today, and sometimes become overwhelmed with not just the technology and the busy-ness of it all, but also wonder - how on earth are we to raise our children in such a wild and crazy life??

Anyway, enough with the philosophizing...back to the mixed media. You can see in this photo that I painted a teal frame around the edge. But first, I drew the frame in with a charcoal pencil, went over it with an embossing pen, and heat embossed it with copper embossing powder, to help give me a defining frame. I then laid down a nice, somewhat watery, layer of the teal Claudine Helmuth semi-gloss acrylic paint, and once it was dry, I used my fingers to schmear (yes, in spite of what my spell-check says, I do believe that is a word! LOL) a thin layer of Golden glass bead gel medium over the teal paint. I went to a weekend of Donna Downey workshops a couple weeks ago (if you ever get the chance, GO!) and it changed my life!! I had never HEARD the words "gel medium" before that weekend! I painted inside the frame with some (Making Memories, I believe) vanilla-colored acrylic paint.

This chipboard tag was, a fun piece to put together. It started out as a plain, die-cut, chipboard tag. First, I laid on two layers of dark brown acrylic craft paint. Next, I used the Tim Holtz distressing hammer (awesome!!) to, well, distress it! (Those are the little bumps and stuff you see in it.) Then I glued the strip of pearl beads and turquoise trim to the left side. The tie on the top started as plain white paper twine. I spritzed it with some turquoise Glimmer Mist, tied it around the tag, then wrapped it around a paint brush handle and used my heat gun to dry it so it would hold the curl. I used Donna Salazar's paper flower tutorial to make all the paper flowers on this piece (layered with many Prima and other flowers), and lots of Glimmer Mist and homemade shimmer mist. A couple metal accents, more flowers, a thin layer of Tim Holtz's Distress crackle paint in one corner, and a long-unused earring completed the tag! I perched a Prima butterfly (again, spritzed with Glimmer Mist) on the bottom edge of the tag. I used my new Helmar liquid Scrap Dots (awesome, easy to use product!!!) to attach the tag to the canvas to give it lift and dimension. I cut a swirl of glossy-embossed cardstock and attached it to the canvas under the tag.

The left side of the canvas is covered in "the simple," - flowers. And what could be more "simple" than paper flowers - especially ones that start with a base of recycled sheet music or book text? I just added layer upon layer, and you can see touches of Golden copper acrylic paint. I also used Cats Eye chalk pads to use a Donna Downey stamp on the center of the canvas, behind the quote. I love her large, wood-mounted rubber stamps - they are simply gorgeous!

You can see in this last picture how much depth the multiple layers of the flowers give. That biggest flower in the bottom left corner is my favorite - I think it has 6 layers. It makes me happy to look at!! (And actually? I do believe that flower has one layer of felt in it too...)

So...I'm excited to be joining in on the MMM fun and am going to check out what all the other MMM artists have created for today!!


Diane said...

Jen, this is gorgeous! Don't ever hesitate to call yourself an artist. And now you've broken the ice with us on MMM, I hope we get to enjoy a lot more of your art! Diane

indybev said...

Beautifully done, Jen, and I love the quote and your accompanying comments!

johanna said...

what a true quote! and so many wonderful 3d elements!

Jen said...

Thanks, ladies - you're wonderful!!! So excited to see the future MMM challenges!! :)

Cheryl said...

Girl... that is adorable. Go ahead and call yourself an "artist"... you surely are!

Martina2801 said...

Wow - this is very impressive!!
Stunning work.

Kris Dickinson said...

Absolutely stunning work!


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