Sunday 13 December 2015

Secret Santa for AVJ

Gosh I can't believe it is a year since the wonderfully talented Creative Guides did a Secret Santa gift exchange and here we are again. This year my 'picked out of the hat' recipient is the lovely Alison (Butterfly) and I had several ideas of things to make but in the end decided on a canvas board on which I hope I have included some of her favourite things - grungy vintage embellishments, texture and the colours blue and brown together. Mmmm do I know her well enough?

I made notes on this post as I was designing and making and you can probably see from the way they are random and with no cohesion to them how my mind works.

On the chipboard heart I used my rusted paint technique using gesso, sand paste and rusty brown media fluid acrylic paints and when dry I applied a layer of transparent crackle glaze and when that layer was dry I rubbed in a little broken china distress ink. You can just see the tinted blue veins. The letter B was ine of my finds in a bits box and the perfect colour. It looks to me as if I used Tim's rusted enamel technique.

The stars were die-cut using greyboard, lightly painted with white gesso so that not all of the surface is covered and when dry ground espresso distress ink is rubbed over. When the ink has soaked into the exposed chipboard I used a babywipe to take some of the ink off the gessoed areas. When that was dry I pushed each star into the faded jeans distress ink pad and lightly dabbed off some of the ink wit a babywipe. Later I again covered these with a layer of transparent crackle paste, inked them and flicked them over with white gesso. 

The largest star has been bound with rusty wire and used to hang the 'altered' disc. The rosette has been die-cut using one of Tim's strip dies and inked with walnut stain. Note also the rusty Eiffel Tower and Paris postage stamp, these just appeared  in front of me when looking through one of my 'bits' boxes, they seemed a poignant reminder to me of how strong and courageous the people in Paris were as the recent awful terrorist bombings were unfolding, I couldn't help but add them to the canvas.

The background of the shrine is a piece of card on which I had applied layers of black texture paste through a stencil and applied layers and drips of fluid media acrylics. (Textured chippy paint).  The pediment was gessoed, dipped in faded jeans, broken china and gathered twigs distress inks before being given a coat of transparent crackle paste, When dry I sanded bits of the edges and blended in walnut stain.

To create the texture on the frame I covered it with tissue paper using matte medium allowing it to crinkle and left it to dry. I sanded the edges and painted with cobalt blue hue, phthalo blue, prussian blue and paynes grey. When that was dry I ribbed in some raw umber around the edges and finished with some dry brushing  using titanium white and titan buff and a coat of gloss varnish. The scalloped art part was given a coat of texture paste and whilst still wet pressed into the craft mat and lifted to create a veined look. When dry it was lightly painted with white gesso and again when dry was rubbed over with some faded jeans distress ink and then blended with vintage photo. I just kept adding more inks until I was happy with it and tied it with rusty wire.

The backing board is a piece of watercolour board which has been stamped with black archival and one of Tim's ledger stamps then DecoArt white crackle paste applied through the gothic stencil and left to crackle on it's own. Once fully dried I dipped in blue and brown distress inks. 

The metal pieces were painted with picket fence distress paint, left to dry slightly then rubbed over with my finger to remove the paint leaving it in the depressed letters. To grunge then up a bit I added prussian blue, acrylic, indigo treasure gold and some sail boat blue and espresso alcohol inks. I found a small rusted metal star and added it to a rusty disc, the number two was left over when I made my antique French number plates 

The arrow was painted with prussian blue, rubbed over some indigo and pewter treasure gold and then more raw umber and paynes grey paint added to it. The piece of film strip seemed to be the perfect layering piece for it. The girls are from Tim's found relatives, I cut them out, inked the edges and added a little broken china and faded jeans distress markers to bring them in more with the blue tones. 

You can also see a couple of my rusty wooden cogs made for an AVJ DI post ages ago, look at the photo below to see how I was able to add them to the layering.

By adding the scalloped art part to the centre of the shrine it meant that the ledge had a gap left either end, perfect for those cogs.

I hope I've given you an insight to the techniques and products used to make the canvas. At the time of drafting this post I am also wrapping this carefully to get it in the post to Alison - now I just hope she likes it.

As part of this fabulous gift exchange experience with the Creative Guides the amazing Tracy was unfortunate lucky enough (lol) to pull my name out of the hat and inside the well wrapped parcel that arrived in the post was this gorgeous Christmas shrine.

It is the most gorgeous little bit of altered art although I don't know that I can really call it that because Tracy made it all from scratch using wood for the base and Tim dies for the shrine. I just love all the additions and snowy effects, it really is beautiful Tracy, thank you so much, it has been displayed in my dining room since I received it a couple of weeks ago and will look wonderful with all my other Christmas d├ęcor when I get it out. To see Tracy's post pop over to her blog, I'm sure there will be more photos from her and probably a description of how she put it together.

Thanks for stopping by today to take a look at my secret santa presents and if you would like to see ALL of them on display then click here on A Vintage Journey to be transported over and see what amazing projects the team came up with. You will not be disappointed as I am the lucky one who has seen them already.

Enjoy the rest of the run up to Christmas and the wonderful atmosphere of the festive season.

hugs Brenda xxx


Patty O'Malley said...

You've created a fantastic art piece, Brenda. A lot of work went into it as you can see on the amazing details. The gift you received is beautiful as well.

experiments in paper said...

You have definitely nailed Butterfly's aesthetic, Brenda! Absolutely love all of your blue/browns, and that rust! Love seeing all the Secret Santa projects - your gift from Tracy is amazing! Will be visiting her blog now to see how that was done!

As this year ends, I want to especially thank you for your Visual Journey series - your weekly posts got me going on a weekly basis as nothing else would have! Your encouragement kept me going, and I hope I can keep something close to this momentum going in the coming year. Happy holidays to you and yours! xxx Lynn

Astrid Maclean said...

A truly stunning project Brenda and I am sure Alison will absolutely love it! You captured all her favourite things so well. The background on this canvas board looks fantastic and all the elements you so skilfully put together in the collage, make it into a veritable visual feast!!

Thank you for all of your hard work throughout the year and into organising this on top of it all, I love being part of this team and this was such a fun way to end the year!

Redanne said...

Oh wow Brenda, your piece for Alison is nothing short of stunning! I am so glad you showed us some of the detail. The shrine is so beautiful and you have chosen the colours so well for Alison too.

Your piece of home decor from Tracy is so beautiful, I am looking forward to seeing how she brought it all together. I have loved being part of the Secret Santa again this year - thank you for all your hard work in bringing this altogether! Hugs, Anne xx

A Pink said...

Wow! A truly incredible work of Art ! Brenda. Layers , detail , texture , colour design and composition all stunning . Thank you so much for sharing how you created this treasurable canvas .

A lovely festive piece of home decor gifted to you too by Tracy .
What a lovely team of ladies you all are x

Craft Addicts - Tracy Evans said...

Hi Brenda, firstly thank you so much for arranging the 'Secret Santa' it was a huge thrill to take part. I would also like to wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas and New Year. Your canvas board to Alison is divine, the background is absolutely stunning and I love the texture. The rusty elements are gorgeous and I love the imagery. Alison will treasure this.

So pleased you liked my gift and that it arrived in one piece. It's such a great idea making these gifts but I never think how I am going to package such an awkward shape lol. Hugs. Tracy x

Candy C said...

What a fun thing to do....have a Sectet Santa gift exchange with such a Wonderful and and talented group of artists. The canvas board you created for Alison is absolutely stunning. So vintage and beautiful! So much dimension and I believe you truly did incorporate so many things Alison is sure to love. And the Christmas shrine you eeceived from Tracy is truly beautiful. She packed so much vintage goodness into one small gift. Blows me away! Merry Christmas to all!!

Jenny Marples said...

I'm positive you've captured Alison's heart with this special canvas Brenda. The colours (perfect) the textures, the clever use of stencilling and Found Relatives with all those gorgeous embellishments. It's a piece to be proud of and testament to your amazing creative skills. Thank you so much for organising this whole event for the team! Jenny x

Terry said...

Brenda, fabulous Secret Santa gift to Alison! So many lovely details and layers of texture in this lovely hanging! Love the rich colors! Tracy's little house to you is delightful! Merry Christmas to Ken and you!

Jennie Atkinson said...

Oh my Brenda - this is such a fabulous hanging. Gorgeous colours and textures and full of so many wonderful elements. Jennie x

Words and Pictures said...

I'm completely thrilled with my gift, Brenda - every element is so brilliantly conceived and executed, and on top of that they add up to something so beautiful and powerful. I absolutely got the Paris references, and I'm blown away by all the magnificent rusty and crackled finishes and of course in love with the colours.

Thank you so much for all your hard work in co-ordinating the Secret Santas - it's been another magnificent year of creativity at AVJ and this just tops the whole thing off perfectly.
Alison xx

pearshapedcrafting said...

As I was looking at how you made this fabulous canvas I was thinking how much Alison was going to love this. ...I now see that of course she did!The shrine from Tracy is beautiful too! Chrisx

Julia Aston said...

What a lovely gift, Brenda! Your canvas has so much texture and rustiness on it! So many wonderful pieces to look at - the colors and design are perfect for Alison! Julia xx

Anita Houston The Artful Maven said...

All of the swaps have been amazing!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE your piece...pinned!!!

Paper Profusion said...

Wowsers Brenda - your piece for Alison is outstandingly beautiful! No wonder she is thrilled with it! Terrific gift from Tracy too. You gals are all so talented and the Secret Santa is a fab idea. Nicola x

Nikki Acton said...

Wowowowowowo - wonderful canvass full of rich texture and crackle and rustiness. Wonderful composition too of course, not to mention a clever construction. Love it! xxx

Juls said...

Fabulous creations xx