You have here one happy artist this weekend. I’ve managed to complete two layouts this weekend, and I’m going to be starting on another (however that one might not get finished until next weekend, depending on its complexity.)
This is in keeping with the autumn theme and the #lovefallart hashtag. I did a little more research on that hashtag, and it seems it’s geared more towards people demoing their processes on YouTube than anything. So, I do apologize if you were drawn here expecting a video. I do, however, actually have some progress photos that go along with this layout.
And what about videos? Well, at one point in time, I was thinking I wanted to put some together. But now I’m on the fence with it, as I realize it requires a lot of editing time on top of the time needed just sitting down and recording the process. These blog entries themselves can take a good deal of time in and of themselves, so I’m not 100% sure if I want to take even more time away from time I’d be spending actually creating to time it takes to publish everything online. Doesn’t mean I’ll never do it. Maybe I will. But additional equipment will be necessary to do this, as well, such as a good lamp and something to set my camera on while I record.
Currently my workstation is getting overwhelmed with sunlight, too. I’m in a south-facing window here and the sun is coming through just right as autumn progresses and winter approaches so that it leaves big strips of bright light all over my desk. It’s affected how I take my still photos already. You’ll see one such sample in my progress photos. While I love the natural light, it certainly causes havoc with photos, and I’m sure videos, too.
Enough of the background mumbo-jumbo. On to the layout!
This all started off because by Friday, I was just itching to saturate a page with color. I knew I wanted to go with warm autumn colors and work in a theme about autumn. I had a few real aspen leaves I had gathered up at Kenosha Pass (mentioned in my Aspens entry) that I also wanted to include in the layout somehow.
I wanted the background to have some interest and texture, so I first took strips and scraps of torn pages left over from my Zentangle Garden layout and adhered those to the page with Golden Soft Gel Matte. Once that was dry (courtesy my heat tool), I scribbled over the layout with my Faber-Castell Gelatos in gold, orange and yellow. To move the pigment around, I misted the page with water and then smeared the colors with my fingers.
The Gelatos made for a decent base, but I wanted heavier saturation so I used a mix of my Dylusions spray inks and some Recollections spray inks in Pure Sunshine, Lemon Zest, Postbox Red, Gold and Black. I tipped the page for a bit, too, to let the colors run. I hit the layout with my heat tool and this took quite a long time to get dried up. I really enjoyed how the background turned out and knew I was pretty much finished with it and would need to seal it up for my next layers. I decided to allow the page additional drying time so I let it sit overnight.
I put the main layout off to the side, and by this time I had decided I wanted to have some drawn elements of a pumpkin and leaves so I set to prepare those. I pulled out a piece of 12″x12″ American Crafts scrapbook paper that had a yellow mottled pattern on it and then painted rough shapes onto the paper with my Winsor & Newton watercolors. I wanted to mimic the differing colors you see in changing aspen leaves, so I achieved that using a mix of cadmium yellow, cadmium red, burnt umber and sap green. I really like how they turned out, too. The colors looked very natural to me, and the mottled yellow pattern from the scrapbook paper added even more interest.
By the time I had finished painting the shapes, it was getting late, so I allowed the watercoloring to dry overnight along with the main layout.
In the morning I sealed up the layout with gel medium and a palette knife. True to their water-reactive nature, the Gelatos and Dylusions sprays reacted to the wet gel medium, and the colors smeared a bit, but I was okay with that.
While the gel medium dried, I set to work drawing the leaf and pumpkin shapes over my watercoloring. I did this with a Sharpie pen in medium width. I found the Sharpie would sometimes react strangely whenever I drew over sections that had the burnt umber color in them. Not sure what that was about, but its like the Sharpie would pick up the color and get clogged. Mildly annoying, but I managed to get the drawing complete. I then cut out all the shapes and by this time the gel medium had dried so I was then ready to start sticking the pieces to the page.
I used more gel medium to do this, and while I was sticking my drawings down, I also stuck down a few real aspen leaves, as well. Permanent memento, now, from Kenosha Pass sitting in my art journal. :)
By this time I had also figured out what I wanted the sentiment of the page to be: Autumn Memories. I wrote that down onto the page, along with some specifics, such as crisp air, leaf piles, warm drinks, turtlenecks, etc. (Although so far here in Colorado, we’re experiencing an Indian Summer – the temperature today, for instance, is supposed to get up to 90ºF!)
Once I had the sentiment down, I thought I was finished.
Then I went to work at my part time job… the one where I’m surrounded with art supplies… and then walked across these gorgeous micro glitters by Elizabeth Craft… and bought them… because my layout needed glitter!
Yes, so I added a final final touch to my layout when I returned from work yesterday evening by taking these gorgeous micro glitters and painting them on to the page by dipping a small brush in gel medium, then dipping into the micro glitter (which I’d separated a small pile of each color out from the main jar) and then painting the glitter to the page in different spots… over the leaves, the pumpkin and its stem and in spots all over the background.
So… what shall I create next? You’ll have to stay tuned to find out!
And I just might get more and more glitter, too. That was super fun to add on.
Hope you enjoyed the layout. Leave a comment below or like the page and share with your friends. :) Thanks for reading!
List of materials:
Canson Mixed Media sketchbook
Golden Soft Gel (Matte)
Dylusions spray inks in Pure Sunshine, Lemon Zest and Postbox Red
Recollections spray inks in Gold and Black
American Crafts scrapbook paper
Winsor & Newton watercolors
Elizabeth Craft Silk Microfine Glitters