Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Visit for this week's blog hop and giveaway!

Visit today's edition of StencilGirlTalk to join this week's StencilGirlProducts blog hop and giveaway!

In today's hop --

-- another 9"X12" stencil of mine, Vintage Script, is being used  --

 This stencil is available here:

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Second Day of StencilGirl Giveaway Blog Hop!

 Today's Blog Hop includes artwork using my 9"X12" stencil Nosegay --

So join the fun here, and you may win in the giveaway --

Monday, March 23, 2015

Don't Wait!

StencilGirl's blog hop starts today, so if you jump in quickly, you have a chance at winning prizes!

While visiting today's post by Ken Oliver, you can see how he used my 6"X6" stencil  Pressed Leaves.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

9"X12" Stencil TANGLED PODS

There are countless ways to use stencils -- for proof, scroll thru my other blog --

But I often fall back on old favorite stenciling methods, including the use of a Sofft Sponge to apply heavy-body acrylic paint thru the openings.  I usually do this as a second step, having first established a background. Over the background below, I've used the stencil 9"X12" Tangled Pods with heavy-body burgundy acrylic.

After using the stencil a first time , I often add spray paint.  This reinforces the layered look that's already begun -- and it's useful for hiding areas where paint may have bled under the stencil.  I sometimes use Adirondack color wash spray from AmazonSmile.  Other times, I use a mix of liquid acrylic paint, water and airbursh medium in a spray mister bottle.  (Roughly 1 part paint, 1 part water and just a drop of the medium.)  I use the small spray bottles found in the travel section of drug stores.

My next step was to brush on new layers of blue acrylic paint to set the stage for spraying a thinner paint thru the stencil.  I don't always add these new, opaque layers, but in this case I decided to do it this way.

Below is a close-up of the stencil taped in place, ready for me to apply spray paint.  (Notice I have cut the outside border off the stencil -- now stained from having been used earlier with burgundy paint.)

Detail close-up

After spraying paint thru the stencil, I lifted the stencil, leaving what you see in the close-up below. 

Detail close-up
Another old favorite technique that I often fall back on is to use the reductive (also called subtractive) approach:  First, I paint a layer of new color in a limited area -- then, while this layer is still wet, I place a stencil over it.  Holding the stencil in place with one hand, I use a paper towel or soft cloth to rub off still-wet paint in the areas that are exposed in the openings of the stencil.  The results are shown below -- where I have used the reductive technique at left bottom (purple) and right bottom (aqua.)

Below is a detail close-up of the lower left side of this painting.

Next, I focused on the upper right area, again applying burgundy acrylic paint thru the stencil.  See below.

Below is a close-up of this upper right area:

 After the burgundy paint had dried, it was time once more to secure the stencil to the canvas with masking tape.  Notice again that I've cut off the stencil's outer border.  (You can click on the image below to enlarge it.  The stencil is now stained green.)

  Again I used water-thinned green acrylic paint in a mister bottle to spray thru the stencil.  After I lifted off the stencil, the central right area of the painting appeared as shown below.

Below is a close-up of this area:

Below is a full view of the painting, further developed.  What I've done was (1) I painted out the left-middle section with opaque green paint; (2) I applied full-strength pink paint thru the Tangled Pods stencil; (3) I weakened the lower part of this imprint by covering that area with green spray paint. 

Below is is the painting, finished.  The final touch was to add part of the cut-up stencil along the left side.  This meant cutting the stencil almost completely apart and reassembling it while collaging it to the canvas.

These are only a few ways I've found to use my 9"X12" stencil Tangled Pods. 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

The Art-Making Tool Can become Artwork Itself

Joan Bess is the person I thank for launching in my head a new-to-me technique.  I loved the concept she introduced so much that I decided to take it one step farther.  Her recent post -- at -- demonstrates creating a textured paper to use both as a tool and as a final artwork, with the Gelli Plate.  Using a squeeze bottle of textured paint and a sheet of paper, Joan opted for a freehand-drawn approach to making this tool.  I decided to add another step, at the very start:

First, I used masking tape to secure my 9"X12" stencil Mimosa to a sheet of previously painted newsprint. Then I began to outline the design with a watercolor pencil --

Above shows the stencil in full.
The above close-up shows the blue outlines as they are being drawn around each part of the design, by tracing the open edges of the stencil.

Above: The stencil has been removed; the watercolor pencil lines remain.
Above:  The outlining with textured paint has begun.  It's just a matter of following the lines drawn with watercolor pencil.  I felt no need to be exactly faithful to each of those original lines.
Above:  The textured outlines have been completed; now comes an important step --
Waiting for that textured paint to fully dry.  Don't start printing with your Gelli Plate till you can raise your right hand and affirm on a Bible that the texture paint is DRY. 

Once I started printing with my Gelli Plate -- I used the 12" X 14" plate since my large Mimosa stencil measures 9"X12" -- the process was quick and easy.  With a brayer, I spread open acrylic paint over the plate, then pressed the textured paper face-down onto the wet paint.  When I pulled the paper up, it had collected some of the paint, and it had left an imprint.

I repeated this process several times with new layers of paint, continuing until I had pulled a number of prints. 

Having previously used the Gelli Plate with the Mimosa stencil itself -- not an outlined version created from the stencil -- I could immediately see the difference between the two in terms of results.  I'm pleased with the results I've achieved both the original way -- using the stencil itself -- and this new way.

Some of the "new-way" prints are shown below.

Above is one of the original new-way prints.

Above:  This version was made from the original green print, which I scanned into Photoshop and color-altered -- now, it will be printed out for use in an art journal alongside the original green print.

Likewise, the above pail blue print is the original pull.

And likewise, the purple version below was color-altered in Photoshop from a scan of the original pale blue print.

To show a comparison with the "old-way" Gelli Plate prints, created by using the stencil itself instead of a texture-outlined version, I'll include the images below --

For anyone puzzled by my term "the old way," I'm talking about brayering the Gelli Plate print with open acrylic, then placing an original stencil onto the plate.  The stencil is then lifted, leaving its imprint on the plate.  Next, a sheet of paper is pressed onto the plate, and pulled.  The above two images were achieved this way.  Variety is the spice of life!

Last but not least, here is the paper I had treated with texture paint.  This is how it appears now that it has been used multiple times with the Gelli Plate.  It was a tool, but now it's artwork :

My 9"X12" stencil Mimosa is available at
So is my 6"X6" Mimosa. Thanks for visiting!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

TANGLED PODS -- 1 of 3 Just-Released Stencils at

I'm trotting out this "stencil-and-scrape" technique once again; it remains a favorite way of mine to create translucent papers for my large collages on canvas.

This time, I'm using the technique with my new 9"X12" stencil Tangled Pods, available here:

(Note:  In this demo, I'm using the blue prototype-stencil that's given to designers at STENCILGIRL(TM)Products.  When you order this stencil, however, it's made of translucent white plastic.)

Below is the stencil secured to the work surface with masking tape. 

The photo below shows a sheet of deli wrap taped over the stencil.  (In this demo, I started with deli wrap and later switched to white tissue paper.)

The photo above shows the way I place acrylic paint across the top of the paper.  On the far middle right is the old credit card I'll use for the scraping.

In the two photos below, I show the first scrape and the second scrape; the credit card has been pressed into the paint at the top of the tissue and scraped downward over the tissue, with enough pressure to capture the contours of the stencil openings. 

My next step was to set aside the scraped papers to dry.  While they dried, I taped another sheet of tissue atop the stencil and made rubbings, using water-soluble crayons.


Now came the need to make this rubbing waterproof, so it can later be used on one of my large collages on canvas.

The method of waterproofing I chose was to spread matte gel over the surface:

This, too, needed to be set aside to dry.

Below are the papers created with the stencil-and-scrape technique (with acrylic paint) --

 And below is the paper I made with water-soluble crayons; the matte gel has now dried, so the paper won't lose any color after being added to a collage on canvas.

 To see all three of my just-released stencils, just visit

Below are two collages on canvas made with these papers --

Sunday, February 8, 2015

One of Three Newly Released Stencils

This post focuses on my new 6"X6" stencil Swaying Grasses, one of three now released at  --


SWAYING GRASSES used with my 9"X12" stencil QUEEN ANNE'S LACE




The 2 artworks with dark brown backgrounds were created with light modeling paste and paints that I sprayed on immediately after spreading the paste across the stencil. This technique is demonstrated here--

One of these two dark-background greeting cards has a moon created with a  circle stencil, thick acrylic paint and a Sofft Art Sponge

Both of these dark backgrounds are a metallic dark brass, but the metallic sheen is not visible in the above photos. 

You can find Swaying Grasses and my other 2 brand-new stencils here --