Found Objects for Mixed Media Painting

 

When it comes to mixed media painting, using paint brushes is only the beginning of the process; there are SO many objects you have around you that can make create tools to make impressions in your mixed media painting.

Michelle shares a few of the found objects she uses regularly in her mixed media paintings, in her altered book and for painting art journal backgrounds.

 

We would love to hear what you think! Do YOU have any thoughts on what you would like us to show you?

Leave a comment below!

OR email us at CreateMixedMediaArt@gmail.com ~ we read ALL of our emails!

Happy creating.

corks, sequence scrap and bubble wrap are all great for mixed media painting

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Tips for using Cereal Boxes

 

Mixed media art is all about creating artwork with the things you have around you and cereal box cardboard and the inner plastic bags have long been collected by Michelle Brown.

Today she shows you what she means when she says “cereal box cardboard” or “plastic sheeting”, and talks about how to store them and ways to use them.

 

 

We would love to hear what you think! Do YOU have any thoughts on what you would like us to show you?

Leave a comment below!

Happy creating.

recycling cereal boxes and their inner plastic bags to use in mixed media art

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Inkjet Art

This article is written by Francesca Albini

When my inkjet printer tells me that my cartridges are empty, what it really means is that it’s time to buy new cartridges, although there is still a lot of ink in the “empty” ones. My first attempt at recycling the ink for my art was unsuccessful: I tried to open them. I don’t suggest you go down that route, unless you know what you are doing (please let me know if you do). What I do now is I rub a cotton bud over the spongy bit, where the ink normally comes out. If I want to use the ink in a painterly way, I then rub the inky cotton bud over an old CD jewel case and then I pick up the ink with a wet brush, as I would with normal ink or watercolour. If I have more than one cartridge, then I can mix the colours on the jewel case as I would on a palette. (I use the jewel case technique also to paint with any kind of water based markers – just rub the tips on it.) For a grungier effect, I can draw directly with the inky cotton bud.

Mixed media artist Francesca Albini

In the first two works, I was also experimenting with backgrounds for this inkjet art. I love testing pens and trying different marks. The result is usually a quite colourful scrap of paper that sadly gets thrown away. So I wanted to see if I could rescue it, by perhaps scanning and manipulating it with a photo editing programme. The result I liked the most came out looking like some kind of camouflage design, and that prompted the idea of adding a soldier, painted with magenta and black inkjet cartridges (that’s all I had).

I continued experimenting with more manipulation of the pen testing paper, using a pattern-making plug-in. This second background reminded me of vegetation, perhaps a dark, lush jungle, so I added some flowers, using gesso for the petals and inkjet inks, applied both with a cotton bud and an old dry felt-tip pen. I found the felt-tip pen a bit tricky.

Mixed media artist Francesca Albini

The last piece of the series of inkjet art is just one of my doodles done with a cotton bud. As the character looked a bit old-fashioned, I decided to give him a vintage background. I happened to find a 45 vinyl record on the stairs (yes we live like this in this household!), scanned it, copied it on different layers using different blending modes, and that completed the scene with the right atmosphere for this funny looking guy.

Francesca Albini Mixed media artist

Next time you have to change a cartridge, try one of these techniques or discover your own. Inkjet inks and art are wonderfully bright and vivid.

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Francesca is a visual artist using pretty much everything she finds around her to record and relive feelings and memories of places and emotions. She collages, paints, draws, photographs. Francesca loves mixing modern technology, such as mobile phone apps, with the simplest of tools such as glitter glue, crayons and other children’s art supplies. Read her blog at http://franjournal.blogspot.com/

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Junk mail art and homemade gesso

This article is written by Francesca Albini

Looking at the speed at which my paper recycling box fills up every week, I’ve been exploring various ways of making art with junk mail. The simplest way is to use it is as an interesting background for mixed media work.

In this picture of dancers in the woods, I glued torn pieces of coloured junk mail to a board. When the glue was dry, I sanded the whole surface to make it blend together more and take the excessive gloss out of the paper. I then added glazes of my home made pink gel pen ink. I also made a rough contour of the pieces with my ball point ink and a very dry brush. The trees are also painted with ball point ink. I gave the impression of grass with children’s green day-glo paint. Lastly, I painted the dancers in gesso and contoured them with a toothpick dipped in ball point ink. The sun through the branches is done with a yellow highlighter spread with a wet brush.

Francesca Albini mixed media art collage

Another way of using junk mail is to cover it in gesso and then paint, write, collage over it. Of course, while junk mail is free, gesso is very expensive. So here’s how to make your own super cheap one. Next time you decorate, keep your unused water based white wall paint (or use white acrylic paint). Mix the paint with baby powder (possibly unscented!) and pva. Now you are ready to cover in gesso tons of useless leaflets. I make as much gesso as I need on the day, so I don’t know if it can be stored.

You can use the paper to make single artworks, or sew them together into a junk mail journal. I wanted to challenge myself here and decided to do a “Raphael” on a gessoed leaflet. I used washes of children’s gouache and was quite pleased with the way in which the support received the paint. I found it sturdier and more forgiving than watercolour paper, and I like the little bit of texture coming through the gesso.

Francesca Albini mixed media art collage

Of course, junk mail can be used to do fun collages, as well. I seem to receive a lot of pizza leaflets, so I made a pizza-man out of them. The funny character was then scanned into the computer and given a digital background.

Francesca Albini mixed media art collage

Enjoy your junk mail, and make great art with it!

 

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Francesca is a visual artist using pretty much everything she finds around her to record and relive feelings and memories of places and emotions. She collages, paints, draws, photographs. Francesca loves mixing modern technology, such as mobile phone apps, with the simplest of tools such as glitter glue, crayons and other children’s art supplies. Read her blog at http://franjournal.blogspot.com/

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