Thursday 4 October 2018

Mixed media Collage Journalling for DecoArt

This is a project I created as part of the DecoArt Mixed Media Design Team which went live on the DecoArt Media Blog back in July - see here.
I am now publishing it on my blog to keep an accurate record of the projects I make and my creative journey.


I have missed using an old book as a journal so I decided to go buy myself a couple from a local book charity shop and picked up three for £1 each, I love a bargain. I created the front cover for another design team project with a Victorian cabinet card and bits of ephemera I decided I wanted to get back to some vintage creations snf thought this altered book would be a good place to get going on them again. I have lots of old book papers, maps and Tim Holtz ephemera as well as vintage photos both original and bought printed ones so I was excited to get going.

I  glued some pages together and sealed them with white gesso and when it was dry I used matte medium to adhere some of my ephemera and torn book pages making sure I sealed over the top of them with it. Give it a blast of the heat gun and then leave it to completely dry.

If you have piece of the papers overhanging the sides don't worry about cutting them off yet, wait until they are perfectly dry and do it then.

I place a piece of waxed paper behind both of the pages I am gluing or painting on which protects the pages behind from paints or mediums as you go up to and over the edges of the pages. I also make sure I have a piece between those pages I am working on if I close the book and put it under a heavy box to flatten out before going onto the next stage or when I have finished.

Now the pages are dry take the white gesso and a palette knife and scrape some over the pages with a couple of thick patches. 

Take the heat gun and give it a blast until you have dried the thin areas but the thicker patches of gesso have a skin on them but are still squidgy underneath. Now take a stamp and press it into those squidgy areas. Priming it with clear embossing ink can help prevent the gesso sticking to your stamp. You will get some lovely texture from it. Dry those patches off now.

I like to build up these layers of gesso and texture and repeat it again at least once or more if required.

 I like to use different stamps too.

For the next layer I took two stencils, a number one and a mixed media design one and applied a mix of texture paste and gesso through them.

I dried the surface of the first layer of stencilling before applying the second layer so that it didn't get spoilt.

I still had a little of the texture mix left over so I used my finger to blend a little round some of the edges and give it a more cohesive feel.

Whilst I left it to dry I started to gather some more ephemera and a photo for my focal elements and I layered and glued them together ready to put on the pages.

To bring some depth into the background and the textures I wanted t spray neutral colours over the pages. I have lots of distress sprays that I rarely use these days so I decided to try out adding some media acrylics to a couple and see how I fared!!!! I began with Titan Buff in Antique Linen distress spray and tested it on some absorbent art paper. In the photo below the first smaller spray was just the ink, the second spray had some of the titan buff added and third spray had even more added. You can see the colour changed and became more milky by the third spray so I heat dried them and then sprinkled on some water, left it for a few seconds to soak in and then dried it of with paper kitchen towel. The antique linen ink being water based came out of all three of them so I need to do some more experiments here ......

.... but I went ahead and used the mixture and had some raw umber and burnt umber on my palette and a brush and water spray to hand to experiment with. I achieved what I wanted with colour pooling in the recesses of the stamped textures .......

..... and some subtle colour changes across the pages.

Now to finish it off. Add the collage, take a dark brown charcoal pencil and add shading around the two collage areas and then around the pages themselves and hey presto we're finished.

Thanks for stopping by to see what I have been creating in my new journal.

hugs Brenda xxx