My little crafting world....

Hi all
I'm a complete craft addict, so much so that I have left the rat race for the inky race and now have a small business called Surrey Crafts teaching craft workshops in Surrey. If you'd like to find out more just leave a comment, or take a look at my Surrey.Crafts page on FB.
Crafty hugs & stuff

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Freddie the Ferocious Fish

Hi all

Here is my second project for the DecoArt 'Under the Sea' mixed media challenge. Freddie the Ferocious Fish! 

It started with a shampoo bottle!

A coat of black gesso then once dry a coat of black modelling paste with bits of card stick into it and textured with a pallet knife.

Painted with a mixture of phthalo turquoise and tinting base

I used paper clay to make a fishy mouth.
Then because I didn't like the blue, I mixed Diaxazine Purple with Metallic Silver. Makes a beautiful metallic purple. Once dry I then painted over again with Magenta Interference Paint.

Dry brushed with Neon Green.

Used a damp brush to then paint Fuchsia Metallic Lustre into the center of the scales. That was easier than it sounds as I just splodged it on!

Notice anything different about the fins???

By that point I was being influence by the Rio Olympics, thoughts of carnival etc. So I changed the colours of the fins and added sequins and glitter - had to be done!!!!

Took a stalk from a manikin doll kit. I put Freddie onto the stem to see how high up I needed to decorate the base as I knew quite a bit would be hidden inside the fish.

I wrapped torn bits of material around the stick tied in simple knots. Glued some scraps of pink organza to the spiky bits. Painted white card with Green Gold and once dry used a Sharpie marker to draw the fronds of seaweed and scaly shapes inside and cut out the shape. I stuck this around the base of the stem with Matt Medium.

To make the eyes, gesso onto bottle caps and add the P.Turquoise. Take a couple of glass beads. Drop a teensy bit of Neon Pink and Neon Green onto your mat and dab the flat side of glass beads onto the mixture (keeping the colours seperate and vibrant). Once dry glue beads into the bottle caps and add some fuchsia lustre around the scalloped edges of the caps.

Thanks for looking! Suz xxx

Monday, 8 August 2016

Fun fish for the DecoArt 'Under the Sea' challenge

Loving the DecoArt mixed media challenge this month which is 'Under the Sea' and runs to the 12th August. 

I started off making another project, and while waiting for bits to dry on that, and to use up leftover paint from it, I decided to do an art journal page also of a fish! 

So here it is, just for fun, along with the few pics I remembered to take during the process. Feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions and I'll do my best to remember the answer!
Ta for looking. Suz xxx

Black gesso. Pounced over with various blues and a paintbrush. Rough fish shape drawn and painted in with carbon black. Seaweed painted with a fineliner and quinacridone magenta (this paint neat has a lovely shiny finish).

Neon green body again pouncing with a blender brush this time to get that scale effect, two colours of yellow on the mouth, interference paint on the fins. Tiny end of a dotting tool and titan white paint to start adding white dots to the seaweed. White highlighter and black liner pen to add detail to the fins.  Various oranges and reds used for the anemones and I just dabbed my finger in them to get the shape. Black charcoal pencil to define the shapes and add shading. 

Dots of white paint used on the seaweed and fins.  Neon pink paint dots on the tummy and stipes of paint across the body. I painted a white circle for the eye, punched a small circle and painted it gold around the outside adding a black centre and white outer circle.and stick this onto the white painted circle to finish the eye. Went back around the fish with the charcoal pencil then with a sketchy motion in white pen. Wrote some words around the frame of the page and there you have it. Funky, fun, fish!
Looking forward to seeing your entry.


Sunday, 19 June 2016

Time for Wine upcycled prosecco bottle using DecoArt Media products

I wanted to make an entry using an empty bottle for Andy Skinner's Time blog challenge. 

As it was my birthday at the beginning of June I decided I should begin working on this challenge by opening, and eventually finishing (with friends possibly) a bottle of my fav prosecco.

As a precaution I thought it best to have two of the bossls..(that was a joke, I'm not really squiffy!).  This was just to see which colours I liked best.
First step was a coat of DecoArt Gesso. I then used some 'plaster moulding roll' from Hobbycrafts to give a lovely textured base (bit messy but fun). Then I went wild with Media Fluid Acrylics.
I ran out of time to finish both (today is the deadline for the blog challange!!) so decided to go with the vibrant orange.
As well as the lush paints, I used die cuts, words printed on the computer, (sprayed with DecoArt varnish so they wouldn't smudge when I used the decoupage glue), and Andy's Steampunk stamps onto tissue paper.  I used decoupage glue to stick on the stamped tissue paper.
Metallic lustres were added to the die cuts, random areas of the bottle and to bits of the tissue paper that didn't go completely clear. Stuck a feather in the top and some jewellery scraps and there you have it!
Any questions please leave a comment and I'll get back to you.

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Americana Canvas challenge - Purple Rain Bloom

There was a lovely challenge set by DecoArt to their Helping Artists and Bloggers this month which was to paint a canvas in under 2 hours, using DecoArt Americana paints.
I entered 2 canvases. This is my second and the simplest of the two, it's also the one I remembered to take pictures of! Completed in just 1 hour and hastily submitted before getting ready to go away the next day. #alwaysinarush 

Once I was home again, I added a little more decoration, which only took about half an hour, and then I was much happier with it! I hope this gives you a little yearning to get your paints out and have a play too. 

To see the other painting, a seascape on my FB page, click here.

The blue background was created just by brushing across 3 shades of blue and the Warm White shown in the product pic at the end of this post. I used a 'wet on wet' technique to blend the colours but only brushed across in one direction to get the stripy/ variegated shades of blue using the large flat brush.
I then took a much smaller brush and began sweeping the long petals, picking up a mixture of the Bubble Gum pink and Purple Rain... I remembered to take a pic and dropped my brush in the paint!
Continuing with the petals and blending in white too, again while the paints were wet.

Once I had the main shape of the bloom, I just added more layers and started to defined the edge of each petal with the purple,
adding highlights with the flat edge of the small brush using Warm White. 

Once I was happy with the petals, I added the center of the flower, using the pink
and picking up white to give it a contrasting edge. 

Here is the picture I submitted, before I added the hearts to the center and the dangles to the petals.
Below are the products I used. 

I used DecoArt's beautiful Purple Rain paint for the first time ever on this canvas, bringing back many happy memories as I painted...then just a few hours later I heard of Prince's death......what can I say, grab every moment guys. Suz x

Thanks for looking! Suz 

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Easy Upcycled tray using DecoArt Chalky Finish and Dazzling metalic paints!

Finished article in the light!

Original Tray bought from a charity shop for £2 - even after a good clean up, it still looked sad!

Two coats of Chalky Finish - even just like this it looked so much better. Start with the underside and sides first so you can smooth out any blobs on the inside for the best finish!
But I wanted to add a bit of bling - so out comes a stencil, used a ruler to find the middle of the tray - the stencil already has marks to show where the middle is, so couldn't be easier to use, and I used a sponge dagger to add the Rich Espresso Dazzling Metallic paint LOVE IT!

See how it reflects the light!!!

And here it is without the light, I'm so pleased with it! And it was so quick to do. 

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Punky Skull

Hi all
So here's the finished skull - complete with Jewellery!!!

Here is a quick post about a page I made using Decoart Media Fluid Acrylics and my new Americana NEONS - vibrant!!! 

Close up of the nose ring,
chain and brooch made
with Andy Skinner Stamps!

Close up of the earring and Andy's 'Shedded'
stencil which gives a brill snakeskin effect!

Here's how it all started - with a simple sketch.
Drawn with a Pitt artist pen and gessoed over
 with slighly watered down gesso so I could still make
 out the drawing.

Here are the paints and stamps I used.
For details of Andy's products, and a
chance to win some of them click here.

I used various media acrylics in greens, quin magenta and some black texture paste which I scratched into, also the spiral stencil (just left over on the stencil from another project) while I decided what to do with my skull. I knew these random bits would add texture.

In the stage before this I also used some black texture paste through Andy's 'shredded' stencil  and once done I went over the whole thing with a light brayering of translucent white. Love how it picked up the textures like dry brushing.

Then just started playing! Coloured eyelids with metallic paint, doodled and started working on the hair with neon pink, adding white to start with to make it more opaque then building more layers with the concentrated pink.

Carried on working on the hair and hearts with the pink. In between layers I used a carbon pencil to outline and smudge to give depth. Paynes grey for the pupils and more detail with a pen.

Still needed more colour so I used a 'you can folk it' dotting tool and the neon orange around eyes and shoulders and green on the jacket - getting there!

More pink, pink dots, Andy stamp where
I thought I wanted to position it.
This shows the finished page in slightly better light, complete with REAL jewellery and multi toned hair and hearts!
Hope you like it. I'll enter this into Andy Skinners Blog Challenge which is 'bold and bright' and finished today!
Thanks for looking, any questions just drop me a comment.
Ta Suz xxx

Friday, 4 March 2016

Simple and super fast technique to create bold flower heads using DecoArt paints

Hi again all!
Another quick post to share a super easy technique for painting flowers. This came about from a journal page I made for a lovely journal group on Facebook called Embrace Your Art by Tiare Smith Woods (love her work, click on her name to see her blog) and her prompt was about using a straw to blow paints.  Well I had a play and it kind of evolved into a completely new technique for me. I created a journal page (second pic) and posted it on Facebook. Then I was asked to do a blog post to show the process, so this is the original journal page, but as I hadn't taken pictures  of the process (again!!) I created another little artpiece (single rose above) just to show how easy it is and how it's done.

 All you need is a surface (arty peeps call it a substrate) and for that I broke into my new mini ring binder and used one of the grey board pages inside. This is by Tando Creative click HERE for details.
Cover surface with white gesso

Add just a TINY number of paint drops - I used about 3 drops of the Quiacridone MagentaDecoArt Fluid Acrylic paint and got a generous sized flower.
Spritz over the top lightly with water.
Blow paint around with a straw into a pool of paint similar to the on below - don't try and be precise, just work with it using the shape to dictate which direction your flower will face.
Then simpley smoosh the paint with one finger in a swirl. 
Repeat this motion from left to right, then right to left working your way down, and back up to if you want to, to create a very simple flower effect.

Top tip 1- you get a much better effect if you do this while the gesso is still wet, and the harder you press with your finger, the more gesso will come through - and it's that which creates the contrast and white highlights. Done!!!
Top Tip 2 - if you feel the flower has become a little too big or 'out of control' you can go back around it with white gesso to shape it as you like. this is what I did on the journal page as the blobs of paint had spread too far with the straw. Worked a treat!
So now I'll enter this into Andy Skinners challenge 'bold and bright" on his blog

I then mixed a little green with the black and added leaves and a stem. And finally I tried ANOTHER new technique to try and write with the paints. I used added a few drops of the green and black paint to fine writer applicator pictured above. Spritzed in a few squirts of water. Gave it a shake, tried it out on scrap paper and then wrote directly onto the board - love it! With a little practice I hope to write more smoothly as the gesso was a little more textured than the practice paper.
Thanks for looking and enjoy! 
Suz xxx