Mixed Media Canvases with Plaid Folk Art Paints

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This article is written by Michelle G. Brown

This week I got to play with some FolkArt paints, provided to us by Plaid, to see what I could do with them. I do love playing with paints; they are a relatively cheap materials, come in lots of wonderful colors and gives me the ability to coordinate all of the elements I need to create many types of mixed media art

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

The colors looks all so nice together (I’m a real sucker for “Rainbow” colors) but I was worried about using so many colors on the one canvas, so I did some testing to find color combinations that I liked; remember that I’m not very brave when it comes to combining colors. These were the trials that I completed:

Acrylic Paints Folk Art

I actually liked most of them but only had three canvas panels so I narrowed it down to three combinations that used a variety of paint colors.

Acrylic Paints Folk Art

Top: Lime Green, Deep Ocean Blue and Ivory White

Middle:  Deep Ocean Blue, Perfect Purple and Toasted Vanilla

Bottom: Vivid Orange, Parisian Pink, Moon Yellow and Ivory White

With my color combinations selected, I was ready to get started.

Materials and Tools for the Mixed Media Canvases

– selection of acrylic paints: here I used Plaid FolkArt Paints

– 3 5”x7” canvas board panels

– collected ephemera; 5 different fonts

Matte Mod Podge and sponge applicator

Gesso and applicator

Gelli Plate 8”x12”

Brayer

– Deli paper, ephemera and copy paper in A4

– Stencils: here I used Stencil Girl L174 Ward Quatrefoil Mix

– Variety of rubber stamps and grey archival ink

– Watercolor pencils: black and white

– charcoal pencil and blender

– Markers and pens: I used Sharpie White, white gel pen, black Sakura Pigmento Micro 02 and Montana Extra fine Acrylic Marker filled with black Golden High Flow Acrylic in Carbon Black

Spray varnish

Creating the Background Layers

1. Lay out the canvas panels

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

2. Collect a range of ephemera and tear into pieces. I like to use four to five different texts and fonts to make sure there is enough variety in the background. Get these ready before you start to get sticky.

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

3. Adhere to the canvas panels, leaving some pale edges overlaying the edges

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

4. Cut off the excess ephemera with a craft knife and use a sanding block to smooth the edges of the canvas

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

5. Get out your Gesso and an old store card or spatula and roughly apply a layer of Gesso over the dried ephemera layer. Leave to dry.

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

6. Add a layer of bone coloured acrylic paint, then a little ivory white and then a layer of yellow as a wash

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

Acrylic Paints Folk Art with mixed media collage

Leave canvases to dry.

Creating Color Coordinated Papers with Gelli Plates

While the canvas panels are drying, get set up to create some color coordinated papers to add to the canvas panels. This is the advantage of using paints where we can make all of our bits and pieces match. Here I’ve used  a Gelli Arts Gelli plate, with the paints and stencils and a variety of ephemera.

creating prints with Acrylic Paints Folk Art

Firstly I used these colors to make a few pages

creating prints with Acrylic Paints Folk Art

creating prints with Acrylic Paints Folk Art

Then changed colors and created a range of prints with different patterns and color mixes. I created quite a few so I would have a range of prints to choose from when I completed the canvases.

creating prints with Acrylic Paints Folk Art

creating prints with Acrylic Paints Folk Art

Finishing off the Mixed Media Canvas

I lined up the three panels and added some stamping with grey Archival Ink

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

Then I decided to focus on one canvas at at time, starting with the orange and pink one.

I had created a few sketches in my art journal and transferred these images onto the printed papers to collage the image onto the canvas. For the brightly coloured canvas I used a bright flower, as well as clouds and a feather.

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

The flower was highlighted with water coloured pencils in black and white

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

A quote was added with the black Sakura Pigmento Micro 02 marker and Montana Extra Fine Acrylic marker filled with black Golden High Flow Acrylic Carbon Black

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

The stencil was used to add more Quatrefoil pattern into the pieces.

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

Here I used the pink paints with a stencil brush.

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

Then I highlighted a few of the shapes with charcoal pencil, smudged it a little and added highlights with white pen and marker, as well as adding more shading around the flower

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

I repeated these steps with the other two canvases. Here is a close up of the highlighted quatrefoil.

Plaid paints add color to mixed media collages

When all three were complete, I signed them and gave them a coat of spray gloss varnish to seal the charcoal and give them a nice, glossy finish.

Final mixed media canvas panels

Here are the finished canvas panels

Be Kind: Vivid Orange, Parisian Pink, Moon Yellow and Ivory White

Folk Art paints to add color to mixed media collages

The quote reads “ You are the sole companion you will have at every waking moment of your life”

Folk Art paints to add color to mixed media collages

Be Mindful: Lime Green, Deep Ocean Blue and Ivory White

Folk Art paints to add color to mixed media collages

With the quote “You are more powerful than your thoughts.”

Folk Art paints to add color to mixed media collages

Be Gentle: Deep Ocean Blue, Perfect Purple and Toasted Vanilla

Folk Art paints to add color to mixed media collages

Quote: “Choose to respond, rather than react”

Folk Art paints to add color to mixed media collages

All of the quotes are by Stephanie Dowrick and her book Choosing Happiness

Gelli Printed Papers Giveaway

Michelle has a HEAP of Gelli printed ephemera left over from this project and wants to give YOU a chance to put them to good use and create your own mixed media collage. We are giving away THREE EPHEMERA kits, one in each of the three color combinations.

Michelle G. Brown creates fun papers

The winners have been announced ~ See the Announcement “And the Winners are…”

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Michelle G. Brown is passionate about mixed media art and enjoys sharing her knowledge and techniques with you to allow you to express your own creativity. Michelle understands that many of us have an inner need to create. By learning a few basic techniques the amazing world of mixed media art is accessible to everyone!

Michelle lives with her husband and two boys in Melbourne, Australia.

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Disclosure: These paints and Mod Podge were provided by Plaid for the purpose of review. All opinions are that of the MixedMediaArt team. The links on this page may include affiliate links and any purchases help to support the ongoing work by MixedMediaArt.
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Mixed Media Canvas from Ephemera Kit

This cute little canvas was made using pieces from Mixed Media Art Ephemera kits, available from our Esty store.

Materials needed, that are not included in the ephemera kits, include 5″ x 7″ canvas panel, paints, an old credit card, a paint brush, PVA glue and a few other embellishments.

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Here are the detailed instructions on how it was put together:

1. Take four of the text pages from the kit and use a ruler to tear into squares, approximately 2″ in size.

Glue these randomly over the canvas board. Make sure they overlap. I used PVA glue as I wanted to make sure it was properly stuck to the board. Smooth out any wrinkles. Leave overnight to dry.

2. Gather violet, fuchsia and white paints and an old credit card.

Apply a little onto on old credit card (or store card) and spread paint down canvas.
Here I used violet

Then fuchsia

Then white

Then mixed white and fuchsia (about 1:1) to get a lighter pink and added it to some areas of canvas

Finally, I added more violet to take away some of the pink. I created very thin wash to add a violet tinge to blank areas of canvas and around edges.

By using a little paint at a time, it dries quickly, making it easier to add the next colour without muddying the outcome. Also by adding a little at a time it is much easier to add more than to try and take it off (speaking from experience here – I am like a bull at the gate most of the time)

3. With the two jigsaw pieces from kit; paint one in violet and one in light pink mix

4. Add white paint to  the violet on the pallet and stamp flower image down left-hand third of canvas. Use a paint brush to add paint to stamp and apply lightly. You may need to stamp onto scrap paper first to get a feel for how much paint you need to apply.

5.  Add purple chord, cutting into two and taping to the back of the canvas – I would usually have left this step until after I had finished the background, but I decided it needed a little more finishing after sticking it on.

6. To increase depth and add some darker features, stamp music and text with Staz-on jet black

7. Using the edge of the credit card, add random lines to corners with black paint – add a little at a time

Now the background is complete.

8. Tear rectangle of tissue, crumble and add white paint with a dry brush. Add to canvas with double sided tape.  Take quote, trim to size and edge white edges with black ink. Stick on top of tissue.

9. Add embellishments with PVA glue. Pink jigsaw piece was edged with purple ink and a rub-on was added.

10. Add other fibres

11. Finish with final touches – this needed some sparkly bits, so I added the rhinestones to the bottom right corner and the small flower to the top left hand side, plus added “enjoy” rub on.

And the final piece.

Thanks for getting to the bottom of this post – sometimes I feel like I have added in too much detail and too many photos, but I want to make sure you understand each step – I hate it when I can’t figure out some parts of the instructions when bits are missing!

Now that you have the inspiration, you have no excuses for not buying your very own MMA Ephemera kit!

Happy creating! We would love to see your own creations too!

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