The Accidental Stencilist

Posted: January 6, 2016 in Daily Art Initiative, New Mixed Media art, Rives BFK Arches Printmaking paper, Stencil

stencil overlayHi there. Lest you think I have turned into a Big Cheater, I haven’t. My Daily Art is drying. In the meantime I decided to show you this.

I was minding my own business after having applied light modeling paste to a piece of Rives BFK® printmaking paper. The experiment today was to use the modeling paste on a paper that could handle watercolor paint. Now, I’ve used spackling paste in the past to swipe over stencils to create texture. I have the light modeling paste which is better. It’s smoother and lighter and easier to spread, but it is also much more expensive. And I mean that from the bottom of my wallet.

I picked this fern stencil because I seriously love ferns. Ferns, to me, are the primary representation of endurance and survival of the fit. The fern family are some of the oldest life on this planet. It’s just science. Plus, there is the marvelous unfurling of the frond. Much is made of the rosebud opening to blossom, but what about those tightfisted fern buds?

When I applied the paste, I noticed some ink began to color the paste as I swiped. This was The Accidental Stencilists first Fortunate Event. It was fortunate because the color was very fern-y. Obviously, my lack of housekeeping the last time I used the stencil was paying off today. By the way, had I wanted to color the paste before coloring the background, I could have left the stencil in place, waited for the paste to dry, then spread acrylic over it or sprayed it with ink.

The modeling paste dries fast (so does spackling paste). Now for the next step. I wanted to use watercolors today. I have a bunch of tiny tubes of Cotman Water Colours® that I bought at a thrift for next to nothing. The good thing is that watercolor paint, even if it dries in the tube, is usable. You’ll have to destroy the tube to get at the paint, but it is doable. I’ve done it. Anyway, I put out Indian Red, Rose Madder, Sap Green and Cerulean Blue and went to it. I used a tiny brush to get into the fine fern branches and a medium sized brush to wash over the background. I am not happy with the background application of this piece. It is not as muted as I wanted. I tried to lift some paint but I didn’t have time. As the clock ran down, my final action was to throw some salt and dry rice on the page, which, hopefully, will diffuse the hard lines between colors.

I am not a proficient watercolor user. My love for it does not indicate any skill. For me, watercolor is a hard way to get good results; it  demands learning techniques and practice. Strangely, I am better with inks which are just as difficult but more predictable with spreading and blending. The ink is the same amount of wet, whereas, watercolor is different amounts of wet on any given brushstroke. There is likely a better descriptive word for this, but I don’t know it.

The Accidental Stencilist struck again by having a messy work island. A collaged canvas board has been loitering on my desktop for too long a time. I don’t know where to put it. As I was moving through the Daily piece, I cleaned the stencil and laid it on top of this other art. I glanced up and for a minute I didn’t know what I was looking at. In fact, I thought it might have been the wrapper for the stencil (as if it would still be in it’s original wrapper, silly girl!). It took a second for me to realize that I was seeing the other art beneath the stencil. It was real purdy. While I’ve talked about putting stencils over found papers, it never occurred to me to put it over my own art.This particular stencil would involve some severe fussy cutting, but other stencils wouldn’t. Just experiment laying stencils over your previous art, then lay them on the copy machine and voila! a custom collage element.

I thought the two accidents would be of more use to you than showing the Daily art today. I’ll forget the Accidents if I don’t share them now. I’ll show today’s art tomorrow–a twofer!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s