mixed media

Wanderlust: two techniques

Series: Wanderlust 2021 #15

In a change from the inspirational art journal page that Kasia usually makes to introduce a new theme, this week she demonstrated two techniques that could easily be used to create silhouettes or more detailed work.

Once again she used a picture of a person to work from and, once again, I didn’t. I went through my photos and picked this flower instead, thinking that it had an interesting outline and there would be plenty of ways to add colour. I converted it to grayscale, removed the background and printed a couple of copies, one of which I fussy cut out.

The first technique used a Gelli plate. I’ve had one for a while but I’ve only ever used it to make interesting collage papers (something that it is very good for). The silhouette element of this piece was created by adding a layer of colour on the plate, laying the cut-out flower face down in the centre and laying another sheet of paper over the top — this created the background with the empty silhouette of the flower and added a base layer of colour to the flower itself. The Gelli plate was then used to add layers of detail colour to the flower. Once everything was dry, I glued the flower to the background, slightly offset leaving a white “shadow” around it. I added some gold leaf leaves around the outside for a bit of bling.

The second technique was one I hadn’t come across before: using tracing paper to transfer an inked design. Basically you tape a piece of tracing paper and your source image down in such a way that you can trace part of the image in ink and then flip the tracing paper over and transfer the ink to your working paper. This involves a bit of trial and error until you get a feel for how much you can ink before the first bit dries too much to transfer and, equally, leaving it long enough so that you get a nice balance of clean lines and blobs where the ink was wetter. It’s an interestingly untidy technique. I painted the flower using mostly translucent paints

Although they are just technique demonstrations, I did want to add them to my art journal. I trimmed the Gelli print, glued that in place and then cut the other one out and overlapped it slightly. Then it occurred to me to add more gold leaves to the page to tie it all together. Another Wanderlust week completed.

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