Posted in Mixed Media Art

Mixed Media and Recycling Old Art

I know many artists who have pieces that they simply put away, or even throw away because they were not happy with the finished piece, and I am no exception.  I have a couple of pieces that are just shoved in the back of the closet!

One of my other fun things I enjoy is making cards, so I have a stash of bits and pieces and lots of different papers (colours, textures, thicknesses etc) just lurking in my art room.  It would take me years to use them up just on cards, so I had the idea of doing a collage/mosaic type piece on one of my old canvas boards rather than throw it out.

This piece is 14 x 18 inches and all up it took me about 20 hours to  complete.  Most of that time was of  course spent sticking on individual bits  of paper.  I reckoned it was about  1400 plus pieces (most were about a cm in size).

I wanted something quite simple for this first piece.  I ended up using some ‘gems’ and other little pieces to finish it and although it looks a little ‘dull’ here, the blue I used in the background is called Cerulean Blue and is one of my favourite blues to use.

So being happy with this one, I thought I would see how another one would come out using a stretched canvas instead of a canvas board.  I also went a little smaller at 11 x 14 inches.  It was not the same though….

I based this next piece on an actual oil painting I did some years ago and got really carried away with the ‘gems’. I also used a lot of gold and silver acrylic iridescent paint.  I found that with the canvas sitting on a frame it made it a little difficult to put a lot of pressure on the paper as I was sticking it down.  I also found the smaller size a nuisance.  I must admit that I do prefer all my art work ‘big’ and rarely ever use a small canvas.  At the end of the day though, this piece is really bright, shiny and colourful, so in that respect I am happy with it and will eventually hang it on my wall in my art room, as I painted that room a lovely terracotta and it looks great against it.

Ok, so where from here?  Well… for a start.. a bigger canvas.  I’ve got a lovely 20 x 24 inch lined up.. that’s going to be a LOT of paper to stick down!  And what have I got planned for the actual art?  Well, I sketched out something one evening, then dabbled with my digital software to see how it might look in colour.  I also changed a few things from the sketch itself – mostly, as you can see – her hat.

While the finished piece will resemble the sketch more than the digital mock up, I didn’t want to spend much time putting the digital one together, so i didn’t.. ha!  I am also still out on the colour scheme I want to use, but this just gives me some idea.

Being so much bigger, this one is going to take me quite some time, but I will post a pic of it when it is done. At this stage it’s as far as looking at the canvas and saying.. must get on with it 🙂

Until then… wish me luck as I sit for hours and hours with a pile of paper and a ton of glue!!!


Self taught artist back living in New Zealand after more than a decade of living in Canada. Starting over in more ways than one but always up for the challenge!

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