Last week I gave you a little insight into how I use my mini stencils for Paper Pen and Plan. This week I’d like to show you how I use masks like the one’s made for this month’s Sweet Treat boxes.
Masks are just as versatile as stencils. My favourite way to use them is printing on a gelli plate. I actually love the ghost print left behind best because of its grunge factor, but you can get some great results however you use them.
Or how about taking a rubbing with crayons? I’ve used Scribble Stix here for their vibrancy. It’s quite satisfying watching the shape appear, like being seven again!
Of course there’s the obvious way to use them by drawing around them, but if you run out of ideas you could always paint them gold and add them to a collage. I added some black gesso to mine before painting to help the paint stick on the plastic surface but it also helped the gold to pop out more. Here they’re added to a little collage of book paper, teabag and fabric and put onto a gel printed background.
I’m off now for a weekend away in a cabin in the forest. Have a great weekend yourselves and I’ll see you back here next week.
One of my favourite things to do in the studio is the designing and cutting of stencils, especially the mini stencils which Clare from Paper Pen and Plan asks me to cut to go in her monthly subscription boxes. These are 10 x 7cm so are quite small, but even so based on a brief from Clare I try to pack as much on there as possible. This month’s stencil is a lavander trio and as a bonus I also included the mask part too.
This afternoon I had a chance to play with this new stencil myself and I thought I’d share a few handy tips along the way. The first thing I like to do is extend the edges by adding some painters tape. I’ll also mask off parts of the stencil I don’t want to include with a bit of washi. The second way I like to use these small stencils is by using a finger dauber with ink. You can get a much better finish with one of these and, it makes the whole job so much easier and by pouncing rather than swirling it stops ink from spreading underneath.
This particular stencil is great for layering with several different colours to create more depth. I also used texture paste on a piece of card and dry brushed over some gold acrylic once it was dry. The texture paste picks up the paint beautifully.
I don’t think this card needs much more to be honest. A few inky splatters and a delicate butterfly are enough.
Impasto paint is very thick and works like texture paste using a knife. I decided to just add a small collage to the front with a splash of colour from some fabric.
I love how the texture paste and gold worked out on the tag.
If you want to know more about the subscription boxes from Paper Pen and Plan go here to the Etsy shop. If you’re interested in having stencils designed and made by me then you can contact me here email@example.com and I’ll give you a quote.
Next week I’ll show you how I used the other part of this stencil, the masks. That’s a whole other world of possibilities.
I think as time goes by, the way I work changes and evolves and the things I used to hold on to as my foundations have been overtaken by other ideas.
It took a visit to a very good friend to remind me of the love we both had for creating masterboards. We used to create these magical backgrounds regularly and I think I even gave a workshop based around one at some time in the past.
It was a visit to Lena’s last week when she produced a big sheet of 50 x 70cm white card and challenged me to make a masterboard from it. So challenge accepted, I took it home and took out the acrylic paints. I rolled, smeared and scraped three colours plus a white randomly over the surface, then used a stick to scribble black ink. Masterboards always get to a point when you think, what the heck am I doing? but you have to push on knowing that the end result will be all worth it.
Once dry, I cut the whole sheet into 10cm squares. Immediately you can see these mini abstract works start to look like masterpieces. I had some left over to cut a few ATC’s too.
I took the squares back to Lena’s this week and added the torn book page and copper paper strips. I mounted some of my favourite ones onto a strip of white accordion folded card and immediately they started to sing to me.
It’s such a satisfying process. It takes a leap of faith to firstly, stick with it and carry on regardless of what sort of a mess you think you’re making and secondly to cut up the finished artwork into smaller chunks.
Thank you Lena for the inspiration and card. Same time next week then?