I've had people asking me to describe my teabag people process in more detail, so I thought why not??? Sharing is what we are here for so here we go.... only thing is that you have to be a tea drinker like me - and save your used bags and let them dry first. The best ones are the ones that could have done another cuppa, so have a little colour left in them.... ok here goes..
Step one: prep a canvas or painting surface with Gesso layers until it's very smooth and silky to the touch - a couple of layers with a light sand in between each.
Step two: wet your used teabags and express the excess water - use the ones that still have some coloured water coming off and lay them on your prepped surface, press down firmly and leave them sitting for about 15 minutes.
Step three: remove the teabags - you could give the whole surface a wipe with one of the teabags to give the background a stained look too. Let dry. (If you can't wait, use a hairdryer)
Step four: use a sharp B3 or softer pencil and start drawing around the shapes you can see on the canvas/support and let your imagination take you wherever it leads - have a good stare for a couple of minutes at the shapes you have and start emphasizing the forms by adding detail like eyes, mouths, ears and limbs. Or fins, tails, ears or even wheels if you must! Main thing is to let the imagination take you to a different planet, ok?
Step five: use water colour paints or thinned acrylics to add colour to your 'people' remembering to make them stand out from the background by darkening the background and creating a contrast.
Step six: finish by varnishing your creation, spray varnish is easier, just follow the instructions on the can.
And that's it! I would love to see your creation so you are welcome to send me a jpg of your work at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will pop it on my blog here, or on facebook - come on, you know you want to!! ..e^)
18 January 2011
Acrylic on stretched canvas 225 x 305 x 15mm and the last one in this year's series of Little Gems available through trademe
I was planning on doing 30 or so - as I normally do over the summer holidays, roughly one every day for a month - but this time things didn't work out the way I planned and I have to stop at 10 as more pressing work needs to be taken care of.
So until next summer, this is the last of the little gems - a conglomerate of characters, all started by making teabag prints with used teabags and then developing the print into something recognisable - or not! This time there is a catfish ogling another fish, still another fish chasing bubbles, a puffy tail squirrel, an elephant, a crazy square looking kid with chicken pox pulling a tow truck called 'truck it' - and a dotty lady doing a weird dance in red heels... ok. Thanks for putting up with me ..e^)))
2011 tip four: paint from the heart. If you work with hands only, you labour. If you work with hands and head, you craft. If you work with hands, head and heart you create art with soul.. Francis of Assisi - Giovanni Francesco di Bernardone; 1181/1182 – October 3, 1226 ...e^)
13 January 2011
Star swatting or aiming at the pesky bird? More teabag people coming from my used teabags... yes, I love a regular break with a cuppa - black without sugar thank you. And I'm finding that I enjoy the drawing part of this - you never know where it's going or what it's going to be. Stare at it long enough and the brain shapes it into something recognisable. So yes, these workings are heuristic... and GREAT fun!!! This particular one had some room for play with scumbling, and I added some stars each with a gold dot, so that the mood will most definitely change with artificial light. The sides are painted and decorated with the same generation stars. Thanks for following my arbitrarilations ;-) back soon
2011 tip three: an artwork is never finished - you just tend to stop working on it at some point. The key is to stop working on it when the point is reached ..e^)
11 January 2011
I'm procrastinating again and when I do that I come up with the most wonderful, exciting things to do... like making bears for example, from leftover bits of tapestry fabric from a friend's husband's furniture design business. Stuffed with fluff from my overlocker. The result? A gorgeously heavy bear, 30cm long - I only need to finish the face still, will upload a picture of the finished bear soon. In the meantime, tadaaaa... meet (faceless) bear number one..
2011 tip two: recycle is good
1 January 2011
The technique is the same as the previous one - used teabag prints which then form the foundation for a range of characters I've never met before... hi peoples!! mmm yes, I recognise the extrovert in there, the harlequin, the square, the exhibitionist, the innocent and the kite flier...oh wait, that was the teabag tag, but did you see mr positive? He's the glass half full man..
2011 tip one: Direct sunlight is a no-no for paintings, so hang your precious art away from direct sunlight and not in close proximity to spotlights - if you can feel the heat, it's too close. Over time paint may crack and colours may change and repair will prove costly if possible at all. Have a peaceful 2011 and remember to floss ..e^)