Mixed Media Art Found Objects

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You can never have too much stuff in your collection, ready and at hand for your next Mixed Media Art project. But you don’t need to purchase special, shop made embellishments. I am always on the lookout for odd pieces of paper, sticks, colourful feathers, rusty pieces of metal and bottle caps that have been run over. All of these items can be used to add detail into your artwork.

Sticks

My obsession with collecting found objects began after starting down the mixed media path. In my blogging travels, I found fantastic artwork with old keys and bottle caps. I was drawn into the beauty of adding antique objects into artwork; taking an everyday item and creating a story in the piece of mixed media art. I am now embarrassed to admit that I have even bought these items from craft stores which had been repackaged and sold to unsuspecting artists.

After several purchases I realised that some of this stuff was things I could find around my own house or in my Grandma’s bottom drawer. I didn’t need to buy repackaged items from a craft store when I could find these items around me. I needed to put my “art stuff” glasses on.  Once I had changed my mindset, it was amazing at the things I could find around me that can be used in my art.

On a recent foray into country Victoria, we were walking around the local lake and found an area that must have been an old dump. While many of the pieces were broken, there were a few pieces worth saving. I’m not quite convinced I have found any antique pieces but they will clean up nicely.

MMA_Collection

As you expand your creativity in the Mixed Media Art field, make sure you are wearing your “found object” glasses when you are out on a walk, tidying up an old drawer or slinking through an antique shop. You never know what you may find. And you will be surprised when that bolt of inspiration hits while you are creating  and you remember those found objects you have hidden away.

Happy Creating!

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Using your tidbits for a wall-hanging

Trudy Thayer has found a way to use up those “tidbits” that you have lying around, along with a few found objects to make this little wall hanging.

“It’s a 4 1/2″ wall hanging,” Trudy tells us.  “I use found objects, here the twig and feather,  left over yarns, and beads or beading.  Plus some quilting.”

Mixed Media wall hanging

Trudy sells some of her craftwork at local markets and she saves these tidbit wall hangings for kids to purchase for their friends and family when there is  an upcoming birthday, other event and the holidays.

“I only sell these to kids; I feel strongly it’s important for them to have the opportunity to buy special things on their own,” says Trudy.

To make your own Tidbits wall hanging, gather up scraps of material and arrange them into a mini quilt, about 4″ square. You can add batting into the inner layers, if you have it on hand. Sew these layers together using a sewing machine. Here you can also sew on features and trimmings.

Attach the stick to the hanging at the outer edges, using a needle and thread. Add a thread hanger in the middle of the twig, so your wall hanging can be hung. Add beads and other threads to complete the design, tucking in the feather as you go.

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Trudy Thayer is a 65 year old mom, gramma, veteran, and late-in-life college with a BFA  specialty in graphic design. She lives in Vancouver, Washington and loves the area and the artistic stimulus that abounds there.

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My Favourite Materials – Part 5 Embellishments

It’s no secret that at Mixed Media Arts we love to create. We want to use materials that we have at hand, or are fairly cheap and easy to buy, as compared to corporate lines of specialty papers and embellishments where you need to buy something from the entire range as the colours don’t match with anything else. It can be very frustrating.

Today we will look at what we need to add those finishing touches to our mixed media artwork.

Part 4 – Embellishments and Found Objects

Another of my favourite mixed media materials is everyday objects to use as embellishments, adding that finishing touch or element of gold to complete your piece. I collect all sorts of metal and found objects as you never know when one may come in handy. This greeting card is embellished with an old sandal buckle and ribbon.

Mixed media collage greeting card

Metallic paint to add in touches to the backgrounds will make a great highlight. Or glitter glue that comes with a fine nozzle makes adding features or highlights by hand easy. (like this Stickles™ Glitter Glue Silver By The Each)

Use buttons as embellishments, reused from old clothing or spare ones from sewing friends or project.

mixed media art arch

Brads or eyelets are fun to use but we don’t need lots of colours; stick to basic black or gold. Then if you need to change colours, you can paint them, change colour with alcohol inks or metallic leafing pens. By using these in your work as well, it ensures the colours will match. It is amazing how many shades of gold there are and you will be forever trying to match odd ones if you have collected too many over the years.

By using paint to colour your embellishments as well as in your background, your colours will always match.

Using punches is also an economical way of creating embellishments. After the initial outlay of the punch, you can use papers to match your background or paint with the same colours. Circle punches are my favourite!

mixed media art greeting card

I hope you have enjoyed our mini-series on our favoutire mixed-media materials.

Happy Creating!

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Here are other materials that I like:

My Favourite Materials – Part 1 Cardboard

My Favourite Materials – Part 2 Text Ephemera

My Favourite Materials – Part 3 Painting Tools

My Favourite Mixed-Media Materials – Part 4 Plastic Sheeting
Some further reading…

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Mixed Media Art Found Objects

You can never have too much stuff in your collection, ready and at hand for your next Mixed Media Art project. But you don’t need to purchase special, shop made embellishments. I am always on the lookout for odd pieces of paper, sticks, colourful feathers, rusty pieces of metal and bottle caps that have been run over. All of these items can be used to add detail into your artwork.

My obsession with collecting found objects began after starting down the mixed media path. In my blogging travels, I found fantastic artwork with old keys and bottle caps. I was drawn into the beauty of adding antique objects into artwork; taking an everyday item and creating a story in the piece of mixed media art. I am now embarrassed to admit that I have even bought these items from craft stores which had been repackaged and sold to unsuspecting artists.

After several purchases I realised that some of this stuff was things I could find around my own house or in my Grandma’s bottom drawer. I didn’t need to buy repackaged items from a craft store when I could find these items around me. I needed to put my “art stuff” glasses on.  Once I had changed my mindset, it was amazing at the things I could find around me that can be used in my art.

On a recent foray into country Victoria, we were walking around the local lake and found an area that must have been an old dump. While many of the pieces were broken, there were a few pieces worth saving. I’m not quite convinced I have found any antique pieces but they will clean up nicely.

As you expand your creativity in the Mixed Media Art field, make sure you are wearing your “found object” glasses when you are out on a walk, tidying up an old drawer or slinking through an antique shop. You never know what you may find. And you will be surprised when that bolt of inspiration hits while you are creating  and you remember those found objects you have hidden away.

Happy Creating!

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