Saturday, May 15, 2010

GPP Crusade No. 40: Step on the Scale

I'm a relatively new-comer to the Green Pepper Press Street Team Crusades having started at number 28. Michelle Ward has been orchestrating these challenges since the beginning. This month we celebrate GPP Crusade No. 40: Step on the Scale. Click on the link to learn more. We haven't become a new weight loss group. Michelle challenged us to work smaller or larger than usual.
I decided to go larger than my "normal" crusade projects and used a 12x16 sheet of acrylic paper for my base. It already had smears of paint left overs on it. I layered more paint, fiber paste, and pastel on the page.
I considered cutting the page up into ATC sized cards, but I decided to try one more thing before cutting up the paper.
What if I put a unifying layer of color over the page?
I tend to avoid using black paint because of my past experience using transparent watercolors. Black can deaden a painting when using it to dull colors or make darks. However, a recent trip to the Chicago Art Institute where we saw a special Matisse exhibit made me think about black in a new way.
More on that after I show you some of the digital tools I created that were used to compose the above image.
Even a very poor photo can produce treasure. I selected a portion of an image from my backyard. I liked the lacy branches against the sky. Thanks to Michelle, I knew how to make a digital brush. By adjusting the hue and opacity, I added more character to my image.
I have continued making monoprints since April's crusade. It's a great way to use up dabs of paint and I like the way it works with tissue paper. I scanned this page and converted it to brush-like layer for digital editing.
This is my finished mixed media painting. You can see the variety of colors that didn't seem to go together. Sorry, I don't have any progress shots on this. It was really ugly for a while. Really!
I added layers of distressing. Uglier. I was ready to cut it up into ATC's. Remembering Matisse's observations about black paint inspired me to stencil across the entire page using black paint. It was a risk, but I was hoping the black would illuminate the colors on the page and bring a unifying factor to the page.
I was thrilled with the results. In fact, I framed the finished page after scanning it! Then it was time to do more.
This was a challenge about scale. For me, that means thinking big, too. I decided to push past my usual comfort zone and add layers with Photoshop Elements. Adjusting the transparency and color of my digital brushes gave me the above results.

Why don't you join the in on the fun?

13 comments:

Kelly said...

I love the effects of the digital layering. I may have to play around with this myself!

jgr said...

Wonderful! I love all of it but especially the black!!

michelle ward said...

Regina - love your piece! Thanks for the Crusader Love!! Fantastic work - thanks for explaining your process. Love learning how you made it from start to finish in the real and digital realms. And you KNOW I'm digging the XOXO :)

michelle ward said...

Regina - love your piece! Thanks for the Crusader Love!! Fantastic work - thanks for explaining your process. Love learning how you made it from start to finish in the real and digital realms. And you KNOW I'm digging the XOXO :)

inge said...

Hello Regina,

I love both your mixed media work as your digital work ! I love the bold colors in the first one and the layering in the second one.

greetings from belgium
Inge

Carla said...

I love how the digital effect transformed the feel and look of the work (but then I am very partial to what i call hybrid art). Very interesting to read the technique.
c

iHanna said...

Hello fellow crusader!
Your experiments are really exiting, I wish I know better how to make art in photoshop, I need to start playing with stuff in there - when I see your layers I'm so inspired. Thanks!

TJ said...

Wow, crusading since 28? That's great! This was my first one and I'm enjoying looking at all the participant work. I love your "XOs" very cool! Happy creations from tj in germany

Brigitte aka Scrappassie said...

I love how you mixed traditional and digital art ! Thanks for explaining how you did this ;-)

goudenregen said...

Love your digital work, I wished I knew how to do that. Helen

fabricfan said...

This is such a beautiful piece. Thank you for sharing.

cathsheard said...

Isn't that so cool that by going on past the ugly stage you go to something you love? I bet you feel great :-)

Vixen said...

I am so loving the media art!