Crate Paper Design Team Coordinator, Christine Middlecamp, has something extra special to share with you today–it's an ultra colorful mixed media canvas tutorial using some of Crate Paper's most popular collections. Check it out!
One thing you might not see a lot here is mixed media. It's an arena all its own that often requires additional skills, materials and an underlying knowledge of basic art principles.
For the past two years, I've been pushing my way through the fine arts program at a local university. The experience is forcing me to navigate new mediums and take on new techniques while undergoing routine critiques and project evaluations. It's tense to say the least, but the benefits are huge as I finally solidify a style that I feel good about. Mixed media included.
So, in running with the idea of mixed media, I created a 5" x 5" altered Crate Paper canvas for today's post. It encompasses both a painted polka-dot border and collage interior using a host of Crate Paper goodies and other fun materials.
Creating the canvas itself was fairly simple. I took photos of the process in-action so that I could share it with you step-by-step here at the Crate Paper blog.
1. I started with a 5" x 5" wood board purchased at a local hardware store. To seal the wood, I gessoed the surface (front & sides) with Golden Gesso.
2. I then applied a single layer of "Cream" colored acrylic paint.
3. To initiate a more "aged" appearance, I applied Ranger Distress Ink (Frayed Burlap) to the edges of the painted canvas using a sponge. I smeared the ink in and around the corners to create a 'circular vignette" effect.
4. I defined the collage area by drawing a square in the center of the canvas using Charcoal. Using my finger, I smudged the lines just a bit.
Charcoal is a wonderful for mixed media because it can be moved around after application. It smudges easily–lending an imperfect feel that caters well to the nature and style of mixed media. It also glides on without a lot of pressure and works well on multiple surfaces. It's almost like chalk, but doesn't disappear entirely when touched.
5. Carelessly, I applied eggshell blue acrylic paint the square frame with a small flat brush.
6. Using a simple Martha Stewart circle sponge dabber, I stamped dark/light yellow circles around the border of the frame. The dark & light circles overlap to create a shadow effect.
7. Finally, I created a collage using both an assortment of embellishments and misshaped papers. Crate Paper's "Craft Market" & "Notes and Things" are perfect for this sort of project because they're neutral friendly and have a 'vintage' feel.
**I tried to incorporate alternative materials that are non-specific to paper crafting; washi tape, fabric, buttons, sequins, glitter, vintage paper goods, etc.
8. As a finishing touch, I added black paint to the sides of the canvas. I then took a flat brush and painted a fine black border around my design. Note how the black paint makes everything else "pop".
**A quick mention–I drew countless squares around the collage using a variety of drawing implements; wax pastels, art bars, colored pencils, etc. There are no rules here and they are totally optional.
And there you have it–an *uber* cute colorful mixed media canvas for the home/studio! Mine sits on top my bookshelf. I'm considering adding ribbon or a drawer pull to the top.