Monday, November 29, 2010

Made By Me Monday: Give the Gift of Art

First, let me begin by saying I am not an artist. Not long ago, feeling emboldened by David Bromstad on HGTV, I picked up six small canvases at my local craft store and a handful of paint. He made it look so easy. Slap some paint on a canvas and voilĂ ! A connected collage of beautiful branches. Yeah. Not so easy. What I ended up with where six tan canvases weighed down with thick, uneven logs. I could not paint the delicate twigs that David so gracefully looped onto canvas. Mine were a thick, smeary disaster. Needless to say, my first attempt at painting ended up as kindling. But, it didn't stop me from trying to paint. And, I've found a couple of easy tricks for creating art for any room. Below is a quick tutorial on creating a simple and modern painting for any space.

Start by picking up a couple of pre-made canvases at your local arts and crafts store. For this project, I am using a 12 x 12 canvas. This is a great time of year to stock up on canvases as you'll find tons holiday coupons online making it incredibly inexpensive to pick up a pack of pre-made canvases.

You'll also need some good, stiff, flat-head brushes. The stiff, flat tip will make it easier to cut into tight corners as you paint. Skip the cheap multi-brush pack. The hairs fall out easily as you paint, and you don't want to be picking brush hairs off your canvas.

Then, select three different acrylic paint colors. Again, you can find both art and craft paints just about anywhere. If you use craft paints (like those pictured), you will need to paint more than one coat as the craft acrylic paints do not cover as well as the art paints.

Begin by drawing your pattern onto your canvas with a pencil. Grab two different sized circles to use as templates. A cereal bowl and drinking glass worked well for me. Start by drawing the larger circles onto your canvas. Make sure the circles overlap. Then, go back and draw on the smaller circles in a random pattern. The more places your circles overlap, the more variation you will have in your painting. Something neat to also try is wrapping your circles onto the edges of your canvas.

Before you begin painting your circles, figure out your color pattern. You'll see from my picture that I labeled each section to indicate what color I would need to paint it. This makes it much easier to see in advance what your pattern will look like and to make sure that you don't accidentally put two of the same colored sections right next to each other. What you end up with is a canvas that looks a lot like a children's paint-by-number picture.

And then paint away! To make your lines smooth, don't load your brush up with a lot of paint - a little goes a long way - and pull your paint brush toward you. Paint one color at a time, waiting until one color dries before beginning the next. You'll paint over your pencil marks, so they won't show. And remember, if you make a mistake, you can always paint right over it once it dries.

And you're done! You can hang this canvas just as it is or use it as a background for some decoupaged images to give your piece even more depth.

Trust me, if I can do this, anyone can! Happy painting!
MakingCreations by KaraShow and Tell Green

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