Wednesday, 4 December 2019

WOYWW #548: Advent Calendar and Journal

Hello again lovely WOYWW peeps. I'll jump straight in showing you my desk as I have lots of other things to share. This photo must have been taken on Sunday might as I was just beginning to work on the first prompt of Kasia's Advent Calendar.


So far I managed to keep on track and even managed to complete day 3 after work yesterday - which seems like days ago but it was just last night! Here are my pages so far. As you can see, I included some of the art cards I made earlier in the year - I thought it would be nice to give them a home in my journal. I will be working on day 4 later today - we're encouraged to spend just 15-20 mins on each page, so it doesn't get overwhelming. 




I've also managed to complete my DIY advent calendar in the nick of time for Sunday. Here it is all decorated. It came with little red velvet pouches each containing a number of charms. When I received it a few weeks ago, I couldn't help opening them but I didn't look! I touched them with my eyes closed and tried to work out what they were - this way the surprise is not ruined but enhanced! I'll show you what it contained today and I'll show you all of them in the end. I open them in the morning and it's a good motivator for me to get out of bed early! 





I haven't done any new pours but I have been working some more with resin. I added die-cuts to some of my "failed" pours with a layer of resin over the top, which really enhances them. I've learned so much along the way - especially that resin is very forgiving and you can repour it as many times as necessary to get a good result. The one on the left has three layers and at one point it really looked like it was a gonner, but I managed to save it! 


I've also managed to fix this one I showed you last week - I just had to sand it back and pour another layer of resin and all the scratches, bumps and imperfections disappeared! Here it is again - do you recognise the reflection in it?


Just in case you didn't: 


We've also put our tree and lights up. Same a last year except for this little fixture I made from some lighted branches from Aldi, a glass vase from Home Bargains and some glass pebbles from Ebay. Once you add these up, it wasn't exactly cheap but we can use it all year around not just for Christmas. And of course our little rustic Santa came out of exile as well. 


Happy #548! xx

Wednesday, 27 November 2019

WOYWW #547: Two advent projects

Hello fellow deskers! Normally I would say, Wednesday already? - but looking back, it seems last Wednesday was ages ago. Even yesterday seems like two weeks ago - why is that?

I had to shift gears and go into 'advent' mode, which means I had to swap my pots and pans around and put my pouring projects on the back burner for now. They're still very much there simmering in the background though! I got this DIY advent calendar from CraftBox a few weeks ago and I realised I had to get going with it as it is nearly December now! I managed to put it together without any instructions - it was a bit like working on a puzzle as it came flat packed. Here it is on my desk, just waiting to be decorated. I'll show you the finished project next week.


My other advent project is a mini book that I cobbled up in just an hour from recycled packaging and file folders ready for Kasia's Advent Calendar course starting on the 1st of December.  If you remember, I took part in this event last year and enjoyed it very much. The course is free but Kasia has asked us to consider donating a few pounds to her chosen charity in return, which I think is a wonderful idea and very fitting, especially around this time of year.  This is the book that I made and I think I will do a similar design on my advent calendar, so they'll match. It has 24 pages - one for each day to follow along Kasia's prompts until Christmas Eve. 





I've also put together a little tray of basic supplies so I'm ready to go. I might still change these later - we'll see...


Another thing I've tried this week was putting resin on one of my canvas pours. I really should have waited a few more weeks for the paint to cure completely, but I just couldn't wait to try it! It's only a small practice piece and it's not perfect by any means, but I can see how this might work. The resin intensifies the colours and gives it a super smooth, crystal clear, ultra glossy finish. It's almost irresistible to touch - I keep stroking it, leaving my fingerprints all over it. I might try another layer of resin on this to smooth out the imperfections around the edges. You can see these towards the top where there's a ripple and the canvas texture is showing. I think it can be fixed, but I need to read up on it. I don't normally bother with imperfections, but resin is an exception. 


Wishing you all a creative week and a lovely run-up to Christmas! 
Our decorations are going up this weekend! xx

Wednesday, 20 November 2019

WOYWW #546: Still pouring my heart out

Usually Wednesdays (aka whizz days) come around quicker than we expect them - today, however, I'm thinking 'has it really been just one week since I last posted'? It's because I'm having so much fun staying up late painting, getting by on just 5-6 hours sleep that my days seem longer somehow. I'm here for WOYWW again to share my creative space, tada:


This is one of my many pours over the weekend - I had to stop as I ran out of places to dry my canvases - they do take at least 3 days to dry. I bought a cheap baking tray to catch the drippings and they dry as an acrylic skin - eventually - mine's still drying after 4 days - but once dry, the paint will just peel off - it's pretty neat! Here's a closer look at the canvas while it was still wet, and another shot now that it's dry. It's not just the lighting - they do look quite different when they're dry - even the colours have changed! 



I've also made some cabochons with these colours by dipping them into the wet paint. I can turn these into fridge magnets, make more pendants or use them in my other projects. They would look great in a polymer clay collage! My mind is buzzing with ideas! 


Here are some of my other pours from the past week. I may not keep all of them - if I'm not in love with a piece, I ruthlessly resuse the canvas in hopes of a better pour or turn them into a mixed media project. 



 

I've been looking into using alternative surfaces as the canvases are not that cheap and take up so much space. Here's a pour on a CD. This could be turned into a clock:


and some more glass cabochons - these are 1" squares:


Sometimes my best artwork is the one that stays in the cup. This one reminds me of a group of people standing in a circle:


Thanks for visiting! I'll be spooning around your desks soon! 
Happy WOYWW! xx

Wednesday, 13 November 2019

WOYWW #545: Totally in love with acrylic pouring!

You know I'm like a kid in a candy store when it comes to trying new techniques, which usually require the purchase of new supplies as well. I can go from one idea to the other in quick succession and lose interest even before my supplies arrive for me to have a go at it. Happened plenty of times! For example, my sticker maker in the left hand corner - haven't even looked at it since my last post! Well, looks like paint pouring is not just a one-night stand but a full blown love affair probably ending in marriage! I can't stop pouring! I'm running out of places to dry stuff! Here's my desk for WOYWW to prove it:


I can't even remember when this was taken - it could have been any day of the week. I've lost count of the canvases I made. Not all of them are great and I started scrapping the ones that I didn't totally love. By scrapping I mean reusing them. I can just scrape off the paint while they're still wet and start again. Most of them are still drying. Here are some photos of the better ones:










These last two are now dry - they were one of my earlier efforts. I set up a drying station in my display cabinet, which meant I had to move everything else out of it. The advantages of this set up is that my paintings are safe from dust, accidents and Oreo's inquisitive nature - we wouldn't want colourful paw prints on the cream carpet! 


I can also save the excess paint and use the acrylic skins in pendants. This is a good example of how an earlier obsession that never took off (jewellery making) can come in handy when you need supplies asap! I have dozens of these pendant trays lying around. I die-cut the circles from the dry skins and they look magnificent as the cabochons magnify the patterns and make the pearlescent paints sparkle. 


Photo heavy, but hopefully short and sweet! Now I'll go and see what y'all been up to! 
Happy WOYWW! 

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

WOYWW #544: Foiling, sticker making and acrylic pouring

What do the three things in the title have in common? They are the three obsessions I went through in quick succession (and in that order) just in the past two weeks and here's my desk for WOYWW to prove it! If you're fainthearted, please look away - it can not be unseen!


So what was on my desk on Saturday night? A new, cheap laminator, which works brilliantly. If you remember I had to send back another, more expensive model as it kept jamming. Proof that it wasn't my fault! A sticker-maker - did I really one? - no, but it's so much fun and it actually works! That little book in front of it is full of my foiled stickers (more about that next week). The canvas was my first acrylic pour - a total failure so I had to turn it into something else. Since it had a lot of paint on it, I tried ironing some scrap foil over the surface thinking that the heat would melt the acrylics and transfer bits of the foil - it worked!

I'll show you some close-ups. Different parts of the foil illuminate as the light hits it from different angles. 




And to be true to WOYWW - here's an additional desk shot that I took this morning:


This was my third attempt at acrylic pouring - the second one you can see in the background on the left - not a total failure like the first, but nothing compared to the third one, which I really like. It was done on Monday and it's still drying. Apparently it can take up to 3 days for it to dry completely. Here's a closer look. Those cells are supposed to be the holy grail of this technique. Lots of videos on YouTube if you want to see how they can be achieved. I'll be doing some more of these for sure!



That's it in a rather big nutshell. Thanks for visiting! I'll be around soon!