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Follow the Art | Experimentation in Mixed Media

One of my favorite parts of art journalling and mixed media art is what I call "following the art." I have talked to the AlteredPages.com owner Jean about this a number of times over the past year. What happens is I will have a plan in my head of how I want something to progress and I will sit down to do that project but the end product that I had in mind is not where I end up...I "follow the art." That is how this project began. I initially wanted to attempt to replicate a technique done with other products and see if I could make it with products available at alteredpages.com. The main difference being that rather than using resin, I was using lacquer. Now before you go and say "well there's your problem," here's my reasoning...I can get the resin look with lacquer successfully, I think in this particular technique it should work in a similar fashion...so let's give it a whirl.
I will not dwell any longer on what should have been as that concept went by the wayside early in this experiment. Instead, lets focus on the fun of what ensued!

 For the project you will need :

acrylic paint
paint pens
stamps
pigment ink
Beacon 3n1
glitter
rub n buff
cotton lace trim

Begin by coating BOTH SIDES of a piece of scrapbook paper with Crystal Lacquer with a brush...evenness is moderate-it's okay if there are spots that are a tad thicker than others. You could let the 1st coat dry naturally before progressing. OR you can zap it with the heat gun--because, let's face it, life is just more fun if you can zap it with a heat gun! :) I applied 2-3 coats on the front and 1 on the back.

Now REALLY heat your paper...yes friends I scorched my paper with the heat tool. The cool part is that where I had small areas of thickness in the lacquer it started to bubble--okay, I knew it would and I LOVE bubbled lacquer, so many applications...but I digress. I continued to heat around the edges until I was happy with the burned look of the paper...there were places that had puffed up like little pillows too. So cool.

So next I rubbed a pigment brown in on the shiny paper and used a soft cloth to smear the color into the dried bumpy lacquer. Next I grabbed my rub n buff and rubbed on some gold with a soft makeup sponge . At this point you have a thick. super soft pliable piece of paper with some texture and personality to it. A great surface to art on.
 details 


From that cool piece of paper, I decided that it needed to be part of my upcycled art journal piece that I had been thinking about for most of this month...This page is part of a Mixed Media challenge that I discuss further on my blog. For the focal piece that started as my experiment, I painted on some Metallic Blueberry gellatos for the "sky" and then stamped with pigment ink some wildflowers and a bee. After heat setting the images, I added lacquer to the flowers and wings so that I could glitter them. I then zapped the glittered parts to heat set it into my page. A few spritzes of pearl mist on the focal piece finished it up. The page base was layered with paint and ink and mists with some stenciling  the trim and focal piece was added with Beacon 3 in 1 and the words were added with paint markers. I hope you enjoy experimenting with your supplies and don't be afraid to "follow the art."

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