Wednesday, August 3, 2016

DecoArt Under the Sea Challenge!

Hi everyone!
DecoArt has a really cool challenge going on + I don't want you to miss out. There will be prizes! Yayy!

Challenge theme:

The Mixed Media Design Team has been very busy creating some great inspiration pieces that are being featuring throughout the challenge. We can’t wait to see what you come up with!

The challenge opened for entries on July 11th + it closes on Friday, August 12th.

The winner of this challenge will be chosen by the DecoArt Media Design Team on August 15th and announced on DecoArt's social media channels August 19th.

The winner will receive a $100 DecoArt Gift Card for use in the DecoArt online store. Multiple entries are welcomed!

Enter your awesome projects right HERE:

Marine life makes my heart skip with joy because it's bursting with natural wonder! Seahorses - so I knew I wanted to create a project featuring one + of course a hand lettered quote.

DecoArt Americana® Decor Stencils:
  • Quatrefoil
  • Dandelion
DecoArt Media® Fluid Acrylics: 
  • Diarylide Yellow
  • Phthalo Turquoise
  • Phthalo Green-Yellow
  • Quinacridone Gold
  • Translucent White

DecoArt Media® Specialty Products:
Matte Medium

Texture Sand Paste
Metallic Lustre (Gold Rush + Blue)

Other Supplies:
transfer paper (black)
angled + round paint brushes
watercolor paper
palette knife
scissors / craft knife
jar of water + paper towels


NOTE: Let dry completely between painting steps.

Creating the Seahorses
Step 1:: Draw image of seahorse on watercolor paper

I slide a piece of black carbon paper under my drawing to transfer it onto watercolor paper.

Step 2:: Cut out two seahorses

I cut around the seahorse with a larger pair of scissors, then, with a sharp craft knife, I cut out those pesky little corners + squiggly shapes that frame the seahorse.

Step 3:: Brush on Texture Sand Paste

Let's bring this little guy to life! Grab some texture sand paste + three fluid acrylics. 

Fluid acrylics are super saturated - which I LOVELiterally, just TWO drops of each color was more than enough to paint the entire seahorse.

Squeeze out Quin. Gold, Phthalo Turquoise, Diarylide Yellow onto a painting palette. These colors will be watered down, painted in layers + will give our seahorse a nice, warm color.

Brush on a thin layers of texture sand paste to build dimension + texture on the seahorse. (I found that using an angled paint brush was helpful in pushing the medium into smaller areas.)

Step 4:: Paint seahorses
While the texture sand paste is still wet, use a soft paint brush to apply watered down Quin. Gold. Notice that the edges are darker (less diluted) than the middle of the seahorse's body.

Next up is Diarylide Yellow! Such a bright, intense color. I think it makes a perfect flesh tone.

Ooops! Obviously, I was a lil' bit impatient...see how Phthalo Turquoise looks green?? Well, that's because some areas on the seahorse were still damp.  ::sigh::

No worries! This actually looks more realistic than flat layers of color, don't ya think?

Step 5:: Apply highlights with Metallic Lustres!

Oh, the things I could say about these mediums! They're soft + creamy, they have rich colors + the shimmer is irresistible. I don't know how I managed to not cover my entire seahorse with gold!

To apply, I just used the tip of my finger + smeared the medium over the surface of the seahorse.

Gold for the head, belly + top of the tail. Blue for the edges and inside of the tail.

Oooh! Smearing this over the texture sand paste tickles my fingertip! You should know by now that I geek out when I'm around so much texture... Here's a detail shot:

Prepping the Background

Step 1:: Create a monoprint

Here, I used a Gelli plate to create a simple monoprint. This will serve as a background scene for our seahorse.
(Color used: Soft Jade)

Phthalo Turquoise applied to the gelli plate with a brayer + Quatrefoil Stencil on top.

Deli paper was laid on top of the stencil, rubbed with my hands, then removed from the stencil. This is what we have:

Remove the stencil from the gelli plate. By now, the fluid acrylic on the plate is DRY. To lift the color, we'll need to add more paint. 

Step 2:: Remove leftover paint from gelli plate.

Squeeze out your choice of 2 acrylics, directly onto the gelli plate. 

Use a brayer to blend + cover the plate.
(Colors used: Soft Jade + Bahama Blue)

Place a sheet of watercolor paper on top of the gelli plate, rub + pull from one corner to release your monoprint.

Admire your print! (I felt that my background was darker than I wanted. I toned it down with a layer of Soft Jade on the gelli plate, then pulled another print - using the same paper.

Step 3:: Add stenciling to background

Using a palette knife, I scraped white gesso into small sections of the Dandelion stencil. 

Step 4:: Add Interference paint, splatters + darker color

Interference Blue gives the effect of a shimmering sunbeams, flickering through the water! Splatters of white paint represent bubbles + Phthalo Turquoise helps give a sense of depth.

Step 5:: Stamp all sides of the monoprint with a leaf stamp.

(Colors used: Phthalo Green-Yellow + Phthalo Turquoise) 

Step 6:: Glue down seahorses with Matte Medium

Add dimension with 3 pieces of matboard. Glue in place.

Place the second seahorse right on top of the matboard pieces.

Step 7:: Write quote with pens + markers

"The Sea...Once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever".

Step 8:: Mount onto matboard

Remember, your chance of winning is much higher if you ENTER! Click HERE to submit your project

I've got my fingers crossed for ya!

P.S. Don't forget to share with your friends + post on social media using #UnderTheSeaChallenge so everyone can join in the fun!

1 comment:

  1. What a joy to read your post Martice. You had me grinning the whole way through. Your project is just WONDERFUL. I would never have thought to use that stencil for the background but it looks SPLENDID. I adore your sea horse. And yes - the metallics are so yummy. It is so fun to touch them with fingers!!! Thanks bunches for a super start to me week :) XXj.


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