Current Five Favorite Tools

So I’ve been working on my 365 project for about 2 months. I finally feel like I’m getting in the groove with it. When I sit down to create, I already have a small store of ideas to pull from so I can start creating immediately. Something I have noticed over this time, is I’m reaching for the same tools repeatedly. And sometimes they are tools I don’t use that often. I thought it would be fun to share those with you today! 

 

UHU Stic-

I’ll be honest- I have a love/hate relationship with this thing. It is so hard to open sometimes. At times it seems to stick really well and other times it doesn’t. However, I’m determined to use up my vast collection of supplies for this project before buying anything new. That means using this glue stick as well. What I have noticed, is the more heavily I apply it, the better it works. Who knew? ;) That has been my approach with it and now I’m loving it a bit more than I’m hating it.

FullSizeRender.jpg

 

Brayer-

This is another tool that I don’t use that often or at least not how I find myself using it lately. I love this tool for layering paint or with my Gelli Plate. But lately, I’ve been using it to smoosh layers together that have been glued, usually with the UHU stic. I think that is another reason I’m hating that glue stick a little less. To make each card feel hefty enough, I’m gluing a sheet of card stock to back of them. I’m using the glue stick then adhering everything together and giving it a few good rolls before calling it done. None of the cards have started to separate from the backer. 

FullSizeRender.jpg

 

Alpha Stamps-

I have a variety of alpha stamps that I love using. So far, my favorite are those little wooden ones you get for about $1 at big box craft stores. They are so easy to use and don’t take up too much space. I have about 6 of them but I find myself using the typewriter one the most. There is something nostalgic about it!

FullSizeRender.jpg

 

Golden Fluid and High Flow Acrylics-

I have always used a variety of paints from cheap craft paint to more expensive brands. With these cards, I’m finding myself reaching for the Golden fluid paints the most. They cover quickly and have great color pigmentation! I also love using them for fine detail and line work. The fluorescent pink color has made an appearance on more than one card already.

FullSizeRender.jpg

 

Corner Rounder-

This may seem like an odd thing to list as a favorite, but it truly is. The first few cards I made, when I was still feeling my way through the process, I left the corners square. It wasn’t a detail I was giving much thought. Then I decided to round one corner and it seemed to make all the difference! It makes the cards look more finished and polished. The corner rounder I’m using is by Becky Higgins but pretty much any of them will work.

FullSizeRender.jpg

There are my current favorites (in no particular order). I am positive these will change over the course of this project. As they do, I will be sure to share.

In the meantime, what are your favorite tools and supplies? Just for informational purposes not so I can add to my shopping list.

DIY Clipboard Hanger

Today, I have a project for you that is so versatile! You can use materials you probably already have on hand or can get easily. This idea is based on something I saw at Michael's that I knew I could recreate to better suit my needs. 
Are you ready to get started? 

 

I started with a spare 1x4 board. I cut it down to 28 inches long and sanded it smooth. If you don't have a board, you can get one cut at most home improvement stores. You can also find finished wood pieces at crafts stores that would work with this. I also used some clips that resemble clipboards. You can use regular binder clips for this as well.

 

Then I got started on the fun part- painting! I wanted the woodgrain to show through, so I painted a light coat of watered down acrylic paint. Then I used a cloth to rub it in. I spritzed the board with a bit of water first.

Next, I had to do a bit of math... So, my board measured 28 inches long and I wanted three clips evenly spaced. Therefore, I had the two on the ends in two inches and one in the middle that was about 12 inches from the two on the outside. Using three clips made it easy. Put the two the same distance in. Then the third one goes in the middle. I used a tape measure and pencil to mark where the clips would go.
Up until this point, I had planned to hang the board vertical.  

Now, it's time to pull out the power tools! You can absolutely use a hammer and nails if that is what you have. But who doesn't love a chance to use a drill? I drilled a hole where each of my marks were. I also made sure not to go all the way through the board. This really didn't seem to matter. However, at that point, for some reason, it mattered to me. Once your holes are drilled, use a screwdriver and small screws to attach the clips.

Lastly, I put two small nails on each side and tied a ribbon around them. This is how your cool new memo holder will hang on the wall. You could also attach a picture hanger to the back if you like it without the string. I also added a little gold paint to the heads of my screws so they matched the clips.

 

Now hang it on your wall and admire your handy work!

Altered Book Journal with video

Aside from creating art, I would say reading is my favorite hobby. I've always loved books! So, a few years ago when I wanted to use old book pages in some art, I had some guilt. I felt bad about tearing up a book that could no longer be read by someone else. Even for a while, I told myself I had to read the book before I could tear it up. That got old fast because the books I picked out for art projects were not based on how good the book actually was. It took some time, but I eventually decided it was ok to sacrifice the book for art. There are plenty more copies available, right? And if someone really wants to read it, I'm sure they can find a digital version. Now, I have quite a few books in my art stash and no guilt to go along with it!

Today's video should be guilt free too! I'm using an old book to make an art journal. This one is a better version from the one I made for this season of Get Messy. I explain some of the differences in the video. So without further ado, here's the video!

I hope you enjoyed this project and video! I know parts of the video go a bit fast, so if you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask! I would to see your journal if you make one.
Thanks for stopping by today!

Painted Ceramic Tile

As I mentioned a bit ago, I recently took a trip to Pittsburgh to visit my sister. This is still a new to me city and I enjoyed exploring it! My sister made sure the trip would be inspiring to me! She's the best!
One of the coolest places we went was called Construction Junction. It's basically Goodwill for construction materials. They had everything from used furniture, to used toilets (lol), to pieces of salvage wood and materials. I was so interested in looking through everything I didn't take any pictures! However, I purchased a set of 10 white square tiles for $1.50. I knew somehow they would make a fun painting surface! 

For this first tile, I stenciled some flowers with texture paste. After a few hours of drying time, I add some acrylic paint. As it happens, acrylic paint doesn't like to stick to this non-porous surface. I kind of figured that would be the case, but decided to anyhow. While I was wiping the paint off, I saw that it actually tinted the texture paste more than usual. My original thought was I could get the pink paint in the background and wipe it off the paste leaving white flowers. I was left with opposite which looked really cool. So now I had to decide what to do with the background. Realizing the mediums were drying on the tile better than regular paint, I mixed a little matte medium with teal paint. I used a palette knife to smooth on the mixture and add a few details. After drying overnight, I called it finished!

I really love how the colors turned out with this one! I'm going to add a way to hang it on the wall. 

Paintbrush Tip

I'll admit that sometimes I'm a bit hard on my paintbrushes. I tend to leave them in my water glass for a days on end. This is a big no-no, but I do it anyway. Call me a rebel if you must. Well after doing this a few times, the tips of the small brushes can get a bit bend looking.

Here is how I fix that. I take a sharp pair of scissors and cut straight across. I now how something like a stipple brush. It doesn't serve it's original purpose but it works.

*Side note: I use synthetic bristle brushes. Mostly because I don't like the idea of using animal hair brushes, but they are usually cheaper as well. So, no animals were harmed in the making of this art. ;)*

Happy painting!

Adventures in Ice Resin

I recently moved to a new house. So that means for a few weeks my art supplies were in boxes and I had no surface to work on. Once I had a few things unpacked and accessible, I was itching to create! I also recently purchased Ice Resin and was excited to try it. I don't have step by step photos of this project because I was really just playing around. But I'm excited about how it turned out so I'll give you the run down. 

It all started with some Gelli Printed pages on tracing paper. You could really use any kind of paper here. Here is a shot of the larger piece. The cool thing about this project is you only see a small portion of the print. 

Then, I created a wire frame and shaped it into a teardrop shape. I used sliver aluminum wire because it is easy to shape by hand. I cut a piece of the printed paper just slightly larger than this shape. 

Next, I used the Ice Resin to cover the front and back of the paper. If you use something like tracing paper or deli paper, it should become clear where the paper isn't painted. It's pretty cool! I let the resin paper dry overnight. 

The next day, I used a bit of strong glue to attach the resin paper to the wire frame. I added a few paint splatters and some microbeads. Then I filled in with more resin to seal everything together. This took about a day and half to be fully dry. The hardest part of this whole project is waiting for everything to dry. To finish it off, I added a few beads and made a twine chain for it. 

I can't wait to wear it!