An Artful Mess

An Artful Mess

The little art pieces I made for the ladies at Lain’s crop at the beginning of March have been getting a lot of comments and questions on how they were created from fellow ScrapHappy members. Rather than keeping those details just with my ScrapHappy friends, I thought you all might appreciate some information about how to make your own little art pieces as well. (Lots of affiliate links coming your way!)

tulip photo transfer art ||

First of all, the base is watercolor paper. It’s a bit heavier than cardstock and holds up well to wet techniques, which this is.

Next came the background creation. I used stencils from Martha Stewart Crafts, Heidi Swapp, and The Crafter’s Workshop (mostly Julie Fei-Fan Balzer’s line) to spray mist a couple layers of color. I originally used some of Dyan Reaveley’s Dylusions, but those are very water reactive, so they moved and smeared when I applied the gel medium. You could use other mists–think Mr. Huey’s or Fireworks— to get less smearing.

black eyed susan photo transfer art ||

Then came a paint layer (liquitex basics), either with another stencil, or some recycled materials like bubble wrap or mesh, and a sponge to apply it. For some backgrounds, I also used stamps and pigment ink, and then heat set the whole background before moving onto the transfer stage.

If you’re feeling unsure about how to create a background, any of these True Scrap classes are full of ideas and techniques: Project Miscellany with Stephanie Ackerman, Memory Minutes with Tammy Tutterow, Doris Sander with Four Stencils, Four Ways. Those are just a handful from the True Scrap back in October. There are a lot more that would provide lots of inspiration and instruction if you’re still looking for something fun. (And True Stamp is coming next weekend. If you haven’t signed up for that yet, why not? So much inspiration! So many fun people! It’s definitely worth every penny. You can sign up for the live event here, and then have access to the tutorials whenever you want.)

hydrangea photo transfer art ||

The photos I used are just some of the pictures I’ve taken over the years of flowers I’ve found or grown. If you want to use any of them with your own transfers, you can buy a print over at Redbubble. The method I used was taught in this class from last October’s True Scrap 5. Stephanie Hamen shows three methods for making photo transfers. I used the gel medium method.

aster photo transfer art ||

After doing the transfer, I added a few more stamps and stenciling over top of the image, especially on the edges. I found some great quotes to use from Cosmo Cricket, and cut them up a bit. Then I got out my pitt pens and white gel pen and did a bit of doodling and zentangling. This book is a great resource if you’re interested in learning to zentangle.

The cool thing about doing these was that, even though it was a pretty long process, no one part of the process took very long, which means I could sit down for ten minutes and do one part, and then go do something else while that step dried.

sedum photo transfer art ||

So what do you think? Want to try to make one of your own photo transfer art pieces? They’re a bit addicting. 😉

If you have any questions, drop them below in the comment section, and I’ll answer them as best I can. Don’t be shy!


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