Saturday, November 22, 2008

Experimenting with Acrylics


My friend Natalie has been taking a class where she uses liquid acrylics, stamping, scraping, and layering, and all manner of interesting stuff. She gave us a mini "workshop" at our usual Thursday painting group to show us what she learned. Most of what she did was too complicated for a first timer, so I tried to simplify. Here is one of my finished pieces. (I have another one that I like much better using red, black and gold, but it too closely resembles something that I used for inspiration, so I am afraid to post it here).
This one would be my second best out of four tries. I started with a quarter sheet of Arches coated with gloss medium. I brushed on a thin layer of raw sienna (quin gold would have been better but I didn't have it), floated a bit of turquoise, scratched and stamped and let it dry. I stamped an interesting border (borrowed the stamps) on top, and sectioned off a vertical band and painted some narrow borders. I used a "writing" stamp in the vertical border. Lastly, I painted the orchid with gesso mixed with gloss medium, and mixed some shadow colors and painted the leaves. What I liked about this is the underneath layers showing through. The samples my friend brought were a lot more sophisticated in this technique. And I liked designing the different borders. I occasionally make use of borders in my watercolors, so this wasn't entirely new.What I didn't like was the shine from the gloss medium that we mixed with the paint, and the fact that the paint dried too fast. I would love to incorporate what I learned into a straight watercolor painting, or possibly one using liquid acrylics but without the gloss medium.

9 comments:

Peggy Stermer-Cox said...

Wow! What a gorgeous composition! I like how the stamps work with your flower. The colors are wonderful.

Myrna said...

This is very exciting! Love the layers and texture plus beautiful color. You can put a final coat of matt medium over the painting to get rid of the glossy effect and have all elements with the same finish.

Watercolors by Susan Roper said...

I love the contrast between the smoothness of the orchid against the varying textures of the background. Great composition and, as always, your florals are lovely.

Kay Smith said...

Michelle, this is so awesome with a dynamic composition. I've long wanted to do work such as this but did not and do not know how.

Jane and Fran said...

Beautiful, Michelle. Why not use matte medium instead of gloss?
Jane

Michelle Himes said...

Wow! I just came back from Thanksgiving in PA and found all these lovely comments. Thanks, Peggy, Myrna, Susan, Kay and Jane.

That's exactly what I plan to do next time, Jane. I will use the matte medium instead. It has even been suggested that I can remove the shine by applying the matte medium over it now. I may try that.

Joan said...

Mickey - This came out great! There is a lot of great techniques in this that give it texture and color. It sounds complicated, but maybe we can get together and find a simpler way of doing a similar project.

Jo Castillo said...

Whatever you decide, this one is beautiful, nice contrast in texture and form.

Archita Singh said...

That's very beautiful!


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