Thursday, May 12, 2011

Memphis County Jail Blues...

I just finished this mixed media canvas and hung it in my bedroom.
It is so good to be out of school :)

This canvas started out as an ugly painting.  I pick them up when I see them for cheap. If I can buy it for $1 or $2 it's cheaper than buying a new canvas. Plus it's recycling.

I used yellowed vintage sheet music, old book pages, ledger paper, and a cancelled 1950s check from the Idaho-Utah Sugar Co. Any ephemera would do, as long as it looks old.

I was going for a theme, so I chose sheet music with songs like "Memphis County Jail Blues" and other related songs. Although it is subtle, and most people probably wouldn't notice, I like adding details like that.

I used Mod Podge with a matte finish to cover the canvas with the vintage ephemera. I did this a few weeks ago.  I printed a bird photo from The Graphics Fairy (you didn't know about the Graphics Fairy??)

Here's where things got a little tricky.
I drew a freehand birdcage with a Sharpie.
I hated it. I was sad. I thought I would have to throw this away. See?
The lines were too dark, too bold, (not to mention shiny) and every flaw stood out in my drawing.
So I set it aside for a couple days, and last night I dreamed about it.
I took a fine grit sandpaper and sanded the Sharpie lines. Because they were drawn on top of Mod Podge, it didn't mess up the paper.  Then, I used acrylic paint and float (mixed a little brown and a little white) and glazed over the whole canvas to give it a faded out look.
I'm in love with it now! It's hanging in my bedroom.


  1. Your collage fabulous!! I love it! I am not sure what you are taking about when you said float. What is that?

  2. Love it! You did a great job! Never thought about buying old canvas I will.

    I like the "little" details too.

  3. Floating or Float - Technique used for applying shading or highlighting. Also known as
    "sideloading." A flat or angular brush is usually used with one side loaded with paint and the other
    side loaded with water or extender.
    Flow Medium - Mixed with acrylic paints to improve "flowability" when doing line work. Also
    works well with floats. (googled it for you, Sarah :) I just use it instead of water to thin out the paint. Seems less soggy to me than water.

  4. You would like doing acrylic medium transfers-looking at your work- if you aren't already doing that. It's easy-let me know if you want to know how. you can do really cool stuff with it, pretty collages btw


Thank you for stopping by to see me and what I've been up to. I love, love, love to hear what you have to say.

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