Saturday, August 30, 2014

how to dye paper with natural plant material.

the supplies:

various papers, i used 140# cold and hot press watercolor paper 

soup pot with a lid

first, gather leaves, dried or fresh, flowers, also dried or fresh,

bark, branches, buds, blossoms, any plant sources in your backyard

or neighborhood.  

large bulldog clips from the stationary store

twine, or cord

1 or 2 tops from a tin can or other firm surface that will 

withstand boiling 


1~  boil water with a few tea bags.   

2~  fold the watercolor papers in half

and sandwich them into each other 

3~  add plant material between each page.  

i did this randomly, some pages 

were filled with various leaves and plants.

4~  use bulldog clips to hold the bundle


5~  wrap the bundle in both directions with twine.  i wrapped it

relatively tight but not so tight that the bundle would bow.

you can  place the can lids on the outside of the packing before beginning to 

wrap to keep the packet flat.  

6~ submerge the bundle into a pot and simmer covered

for about an hour.   you may need to add a weight on top 

to keep the paper below the surface of the water.

take the package out of the water with tongs, remove the twine. 

carefully take out the leaves from each page.

if the leaves are stick, wait until the paper dries a bit

so as not to damage the paper.

separate the papers and  set them out to dry 

or use a heat gun or blow dryer.

i am going to make a travel journal 

for an upcoming trip with these papers.  you can make cards,

a journal or use the paper for background,

the sky's the limit.  



Friday, August 29, 2014

on my easel this week

acrylic and ink

i am not sure where it is going 

but that is not an unusual state for me.

i will wait and come back to see whether

the next round of painting will uncover more.

wondering if you are more deliberate in your approach to a painting?

view from my little deck

wishing you a lovely long holiday weekend. 

we in southern california are experiencing a very warm

 and humid (for the west coast) week.  perfect for outdoor dining, candles

twinkling white lights well into the night.


i join eva and kristen at ppf with other artists 
who show their art.  won't you visit?

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

i needed a portfolio for all of the paintings i have 

 done on paper.  for this i used a children's board map book.

it is nice and sturdy while also being large enough

to hold various sizes of papers.

i first sanded the slick finish with a 

block sander to make it easier 

to accept acrylic paint.   you can choose to gesso 

the pages as an alternative.

next, i used wide tape to put two boards together.

finally i punched a hole in the top center

of both boards and strung ribbon through to hold the

portfolio closed.   i now have a colorful place to 

store painted papers and other large pieces of paper.  

today i am posting with woyww, 
what's on your work desk wednesday.
check out to link and visit other creatives

Saturday, August 23, 2014

altering photographs is a loose and unpredictable process

requiring few complicated or special supplies.  for this reason 

i find it freeing and a good warm up exercise 

before i begin painting or drawing.

i use two small plastic containers that will hold 4 x 6 photo.

one holds water and the other a mixture of water and bleach.

other supplies are photos of course, you can use up those photos 

that you can't throw away but pile up and never seem to have a place,

steel wool, an awl or nail or pen without ink, anything to scratch into 

the surface once it has been softened by water, stencils, lace, doily,

styrofoam container or any other type of texture you can think of.

lots of rags, newspaper and paper towels to sop up the mess.

maybe gloves too. 

the first step is to dip the photo into water.  you can dip a portion of the 

photo or the whole thing.  wait a few seconds for the emulsion to soften.

then use one of the tools, for example the steel wool

and start scraping.  there are no rules for how to proceed.  

work on the photo until you feel finished.  you can always 

go back in and do more later.  set it aside to dry.

another process is to dip a portion of the photo or the whole

photo into the water/bleach mixture.  you need to experiment 

with the amount of time to let it sit in the bleach.  try a few 

seconds first.  

from here you can experiment more with 

scratching and altering the photo or you can let it change colors on 

its own.  oil pastels, watercolor, acrylic can also be used,

you can dip it immediately into the water bath  to stop the bleaching process, 

blot the liquid or  let the colors drip into each other.  you will do well to 

change the water mixture frequently.  the bleach 

mixture will hold out through many photos. 

once the photo has dried, you can use it as a part of collage 

or even it frame it.  

wishing you a lovely weekend.  i will be participating 

in a journaling workshop with orly avineri and am 

looking forward to a reunion with my journaling buddies. 

posting with the artists at paint party friday.  

Saturday, August 16, 2014

lucky fish SOLD

i'm back but if you have 

wondered where i have been all of these silent days....

good things come in threes SOLD

i have been  tweaking paintings,  painting new ones, 

framing,  and finally hanging them for the 

second annual 

gallery in the garden 

hosted by the lovely diane dunn 

last night at her studio in redondo beach.

taylor bought her first piece of art from her new job

i didn't have time but my dear friend 

jack long has posted photos of many of the paintings 

here  on her blog.   jacki has posted consecutively 

for 751 days now!  an amazing fete.

little critter SOLD

i always appreciate your visits and 

love your comments.  let me know what you 

have been up to this summer.

have a lovely  weekend.

i'm going to put my feet up and rest!

posting ( little late but glad to be here) with paint party friday