Yes it is Fall...a time of gorgeous color and a time to be thankful for the blessings in your life :) Here in the desert of Arizona the changing colors are not so obvious..but we do enjoy a slightly cooler bit of air as we stroll among the cactus. To celebrate the change, I made a decoration to hang on the door. This is my Spark of Creativity for the Kraaft Shaak Design Team. You may remember I was on the team for three months earlier this year? Well we were all asked back to design for the Holiday Season, so you will see a more sparks coming from me, as well as the others, on the Saturdays of October, November and December :) Look HERE for more information about all my fellow artists on the team!
So how did my project start? Well I knew I wanted to make SOMETHING for Fall...but not really WHAT. I also knew I didn't want to spend a ton of money. I went off the the dollar store to see what I could alter. For me, those dollar items just seem..well..cheap looking (duh..they are a dollar). So I figured I could get something and use my creativity to improve the look a bit.. I found some things I thought I thought I could use to make a little tower of pumpkins with a few leaves for around $7 total...I was excited! My next trip was to the Michaels store. I needed some matte gel medium...but you can't go to Michaels and not look around right? Well, I found this adorable wooden picket fence for $7.99 and I just HAD to have it. Luckily my Mom was with me and so I could use two coupons..lol. Now I had a pile of things I could use for my Fall project :)
To begin I started with my Art Basics heavy white gesso to cover my wooden fence piece. Of course I wanted a 'white picket fence' but I also wanted to seal up the wood and make a less absorbent surface for my future layers. This gesso brand is my favorite for a one layer application. I am so glad I was introduced to this line by the Kraaft Shaak Shop.
Next I used my sample of Modeling Paste from the Kraaft Shaak Shop. It is so cool to be able to get a sample of the products you want to try out instead of buying a huge expensive tub of something you might not like. After using several types of pastes..this one from Art Basics is my favorite. It is thick enough to stay put but also dries fairly quickly. I used a crofter's workshop stencil and palette knife to create some raised texture 'vines' on my fence.
I had to let my fence dry for awhile, so I moved on to my haul from the dollar store. Styrofoam pumpkins, burlap leaves and flowers, and some silky leaves and flowers. I cut all the stuff apart. Then I used a big 'ol kitchen knives to cut all those pumpkins in half, I guess this means I COULD make another whole decoration :)
Next... my favorite! I needed some nice papers to use with my project so of course out came my 8" X 10" Gelli Arts Printing Plate. I picked several fall colors of paints. I wanted to make some impressions of Autumn leaves, but of course, we have cactus here...not maple leaves. So I decided to use some of the uglier silky leaves I got at the dollar store for printing. As you will see in later steps..this was a brilliant idea :)
I used both deli paper and newsprint weight paper to make my prints. I love the translucency of the deli paper. For collaging over something in a opaque fashion I would need the light weight newsprint paper. You can see that I made WAY more prints then I needed for the project at hand. I just CAN NOT STOP when I print with my Gelli Plate!
Now for the pile of pumpkins. I used my liquid matte medium and started to collage over the half pumpkins with my printed papers. I also searched through my stash of papers for bits and bobs to include. As I was collaging I kept in mind the light source and where the highlights and shadows would be. I used lighter and darker papers to 'paint' them was they would be on a real pumpkin. 'Paper painting' type collage is really a LOVE of mine.
Once all my pumpkins were covered with my Gelli Plate printed papers and set aside to dry, I moved on to leaves. As I said before...$1 items are a bit cheap looking...but once I had used these previously 'ugly' leaves for printing...they were much nicer. So, I decided to just add a bit of color and shine to them and use them on my project! First, I painted the top with a bit of left over liquid matte medium I had on my palette..and then dipped them in my tub of clear embossing powder. Wow..a nice shine that made once I heated it. Then I got out my Lindy's Stamp Gang Magicals in 'Autumn Leaves; colors from then Kraaft Shaak Shop. I painted up the leaves with using the hot poker orange and cattail brown. This added a nice shimmer. Next I used a bit of Adirondack alcohol ink to drip down the creases of the leaves. Then I used the magicals again in tibetan poppy teal just in the creases. I gave the leaves another hit with my heat tool to dry them up and set the colors into the embossing powder., Love the look :)
Now back to my fence. I wanted a weathered look with a few different layers. I decided a bit of background stamping was in order. I used a french script stamp from Stampin' Up! and some black archival ink.
Next I made some glaze using 1/2 glazing medium and 1/2 brown acrylic paint. I painted this on my fence and then wiped it off in places with a baby wipe. Once I finished up with all the slats using the brown glaze, I made up some rust colored glaze and repeated the process. I liked how the glaze made my 'vines' show up as well as bringing out some of the wood texture.
Next I I got out some Liquetex acrylic ink in a sepia color and did some dripping. I started the ink at the top of the fence then tapped the fence on the desk to make it run. I sprayed on some water to make it spread more. I also dabbed off some places with a baby wipe where I though it was too dark looking.
My last thing to do before assembling my project was to make a title. I found some 'grunge board' letters in my stash from Tim Holtz. I also had a plaque looking thing made of chip board. I covered the plaque with a cool piece of one of the deli paper prints and then wrote the word 'blessings' on it with my black Posca pen. I painted the letters using orange and rust acrylic paint and stenciled them a little with a Tim Holtz stencil to add texture.
Finally I assembled everything using my hot glue gun. I added a few twists of copper colored craft wire to finish it off. I LOVE it :) I hope you do too. Leave me a comment and don't forget to visit The Kraaft Shaak to see what is coming up next!