Wednesday, April 6, 2011


This piece kicks off a series I am in the process of creating. It's about as Mixed Media as you can get!

Let me introduce you to "Permanent." He was inspired by the song, "Permanent" from David Cook who was our American Idol in 2008. He wrote this song with Raine Maida from Our Lady Peace. "Permanent" is about his brother, Adam, and his battle with brain cancer. Adam fought bravely for more than 10 years and sadly lost his battle on May 2, 2009.

What's What? How'd I do that?

This is a combination of inks, acrylic paints, texture gels, Liquid Applique, Swavorski Crystals, and crackle medium. All of that Inky Hot Mess is on a 10" x 20" canvas panel from Dick Blick.

It all begin with 4 acrylic paints -  Black, Purple, and White from Anita's All Purpose Acrylic Craft Paint and True Navy from Apple Barrel/Plaid. The Anita's paints are from Hobby Lobby and the Apple Barrel one is from WalMart. Really those are the only paints used! I mixed and mixed and mixed until I had the colors I wanted. There's a few layers of paint also.

In person, you can really see the purple under the crackle medium. I love crackle and the whole distress look so whenever I can use something to make a piece look older, distressed, antiqued, worn, pretty much anything but brand new looking,  I can and do! The base looks blue in the photo, but it's really purple.

There's a very thick layer of Crackle Medium from Folk Art/Plaid. Then there's various blues on top. It crackled very well. The secret to a good crackle is a very thick layer of the crackle medium and let it dry completely. I leave things overnight at a bare minimum. Many times I'll leave things for a day or two. It depends on how crackle medium happy I got.

There's lots and lots and lots and lots of Iridescent Bright Silver Ink from Liquitex. The puffy clouds were created by using 3 tubes of White Liquid Applique and a heat gun. That stuff puffs up like crazy with the heat gun. Be careful not to over heat it or it will burn.

The bottom, as you can see, has a great deal of black. There's a couple layers of black acrylic paint, crackle medium, and more black paint. One thing I did with a few areas was use the heat gun to speed up the paint drying.

I was a bit impatient I'll admit it. I've had this in my head for a few weeks and have been collecting the necessary items so I really needed to get this out of my head and onto canvas. My impatience created a bubbling effect. An effect I do not recommend unless you either outside, have amazing air circulation, the windows open, a fan going, something for ventilation because bubbling paint stinks! It didn't photograph very well unfortunately. I do plan on taking some more photos outside on a really sunny day and am hoping I can get some better shots with natural light.

The black paint was covered with the Black Lava Texture Medium from Liquitex which I purchased from Dick Blick.  The glitter in it shows up very well in photos. There's a ton of hard, rough, black specks all over where you see the glitter.

The "Permanent" lettering was a very difficult thing to do. The inking was the easy part. Finding the stamps and stencils I needed was such a huge challenge with the look I had in mind! The "P" is a stencil from Hobby Lobby. The rest is from Inkadinkado's Coffee House alphabet clear stamp set. It was done with Jet Black StazOn. Coffee House is in a photo below so you can see more of the alphabet. It's a whimsically, cursive inspired set. Something different. I have been looking for uniquely different alphabets. Not an easy thing to find, I tell ya!

Wondering how I used an ink pad with a stencil? Easy! I used a dauber. I left it out overnight to dry and it's still soft and spongy. I wasn't sure if I would be able to use it again since I used StazOn which is a solvent based ink.

The white star is also done with StazOn. I recently purchased a few of the Opaque ink pads. I used Cotton White.

To clean my stamps after using StazOn, I used the StazOn cleaner, baby wipes, and a hand towel. After they were cleaned, I stamped the stamps and blocks on newsprint to dry. It's extremely important to thoroughly clean your stamps - especially clear stamps - immediately when using StazOn. It will damage your stamps if you do not clean them quickly. I left the stamps on the carrier sheet to dry overnight. Then I put them in their packaging. I never put away wet or damp stamps. I live in the South and I always worry about mold with our humidity.

I used the Bingo Alphabet My Acrylix Stamp set from Close To My Heart for the white star. Be sure when you're looking at purchasing an alphabet set to see what else is included. Sometimes there's brackets, dollar sign, ampersand (I learned that word on Wheel of Fortune and it's one of these &), question mark, exclamation point, flourishes, stars, hearts, etc. Extras that match an alphabet are always a good thing!

The final detail is the two teardrop Swarovski crystals coming off the base of the "P." I recently purchased them from ArtBeads. They have tons and tons of Swarovski crystals. You don't need to purchase 100 of them either. If you want one, you can get just one and they don't charge you extra. Their shipping is extremely reasonable - Free on orders $10 or more! They are attached with a tiny amount of Diamond Glaze.

That's all of the pieces and parts I used to create "Permanent." I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. I need to order a frame from Dick Blick ASAP! I really want to hang it up in my studio.

Until next time *

"Is this the moment where I look you in the eye?
Forgive my broken promise that you'll never see me cry" ~ "Permanent" ~ David Cook
Want to see the rest of the lyrics or hear the song? Here they both are on YouTube.

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