Just a quick update on the layered wood ornaments I’ve been making. 12 days of Christmas? No, it’s not the 166th day of Christmas in my craft room. I’ve knocked out a few more ornaments designs and this was the last one. I plan on making one more before figuring out little hangers, packaging, and where to sell them.
I can’t wait for it to be done. Honestly, I don’t want to see any Christmas stuff for a very long time.
I decided a while ago, back when I posted my first post on using a laser cutter, that I was going to make more wood ornaments. I realized a few days ago that I pretty much abandoned my blog because I was off lasering and painting and doing all the things. So I’m back to give a quick update.
This storage container filled with gold gilding supplies has been on the shelf staring at me for months. I’ve never tried it, but I’ve wanted to for years. I’m finally working on a project I planned on applying gold gilding to a painting. I think I pushed it off for so long because I thought it was a huge process, but it turned out to be really easy and quick.
Mixing colors is hard. It’s a skill I’ve always been decent at but I’ve also never really dedicated time to getting better at it. I was an art minor in college and spent a good amount of time learning about color. So I know how to mix colors, I just never really cared to do it. And for a lot of people, it can be really frustrating.
I go to the art store most weekends. Even if it’s just to walk around and get out of the house for a bit. Recently, I started noticing more paint coming in CMYK sets. I even came across a watercolor set like this. I’m currently in the middle of a painting and decided it might be fun to switch things up a bit and I grabbed a few bottles of fluid acrylics to play with.
It had been a while since I’ve done a painting and I had one that has been sitting unpainted for over a year (see post: Still need a Bob). Linda and the kids have been without a husband/father all this time.
A while back, I painted the Belcher children to line my stairway:
It’s been on my to-do list forever to paint the parents to hang on the other side of the stairs. Linda Belcher has been in progress for months now. With summer here and the grass growing, I haven’t had time to finish it.
But it was raining this weekend, so I was stuck inside instead of laboring outside in the overgrown jungle that is my yard.
She’s almost done. I need to do some touch ups, paint the sides so it’s not bare wood and put a sealant on it. Somehow I manage to paint even on the messiest table ever.
Even though my crafty time has been lacking the last few months, my yard is starting to come together. Last weekend I finished the front tiers that are in my front yard. It took me several weekends but I ripped out all the weeds and filled with rubber mulch. Under the mulch are layers of tarps because I don’t want anything to grow down there…. ever. It’s such a paint taking care of a yard on a hill.
There’s still so much to do. The top tier needs some work. It has a large fountain, grass, and several trees. I haven’t decided yet what I’m doing there. I don’t even want to think about the staircase that runs down the other side of the front hill or the backyard.
This weekend, I promised my co-worker I would spend some time doing some painting on some of the 3D items he requested. Why? Because I volunteer myself for everything.
I’ve done many many paintings, but 3D Prints are a bit hard to paint. First, they have a texture from the plastic layers (unless you do some post-processing). Second, they’re 3D, and unlike a painting, they don’t have any definite lines where the paint should stop. Third, I didn’t prime the object, because I printed it in the character’s main color so it took many layers to cover the green plastic. And last, I didn’t give it a clear coat to lock it all in, so I’m just waiting for him to accidentally scrape some of the paint off.
Basically, it can easily come out looking very messy. My co-worker seemed to really like it this morning when I brought it in, so maybe I’m being too picky. I hope it gets easier once I get a few more painted.
Finally, I can reveal the painting I’ve been working on. It was hard not showing off the work as it progressed as I usually do on various social media. Normally, I don’t paint for other people… I tend to do what I want on a whim, but this was an old co-worker and friend and the image was pretty cute and similar to what I normally l do.
I worked on this pretty much every night for several weeks. It is not a hard image to reproduce, but because the size it took a while. They wanted big enough to fille a wall but my car would only fit a 4×6. By the time it was completed I didn’t want to give it away. This isn’t usually the type of imagery I paint, but in person, it was pretty stunning. Or maybe the colors just worked really well in my living room.
Like most of my stuff, this is not an original. I was handed an image and was asked to turn it into a painting. I’m pretty good at copying things, not so great at conceiving things. I tried googling around when I first got the image to try and attribute it to the artist, unfortunately, I couldn’t find it at that time.
I actually took a commission job. I’d normally never take one, but this one was requested by a good friend who already knew what he wanted. Like most of my paintings, I’m just recreating a cartoon for him. Unfortunately, I can’t show what I’m working on until it’s finished and given as a gift to the person he’s buying it for.
It’s been a hot minute since I finished my last painting. So, before I started that project, I got back into painting with a mini-series from American Dad. I had these already primed and they’ve just been sitting around waiting to be painted on. I like working on these minis, they are quick and easy and I usually accomplish one or two a night.
Hopefully, I can show off the latest painting after Christmas. I spent a good amount of time last week on it and I’m hoping to have it done this week or maybe next week if I’m lazy.
I’ve known for a long time you can use some ceramic products on glass, I just never got around to trying it. I used to do a lot of glass fusing but I never really got into it. It just wasn’t very consistent and that frustrated me. But I got out some Mayco Designer Liners, which are known to work if you sandwich your painting in between two pieces of glass.
But the real question was whether or not it was going to work with a microwave kiln.
Painting on glass is a pain especially with a water-soluble product like Designer Liner. If you try to do any layering, the previous layer will come off the second it gets wet. Dripping product onto the glass will work, but brushing will not.
Using a glass calligraphy pen seemed to work well at dropping product where I wanted it. It also let me scrape product away. Eventually, I had a cute little lightning design and after letting it dry completely (we don’t want to have boiling liquid on glass) I sandwiched the design with another piece of glass and crammed it in the microwave.
The results were not great.
The product cracked around the edges (the liner, not the glass) and a giant bubble of air was trapped in the middle. In an actual kiln, these air bubbles would eventually rise to the surface and it wouldn’t be an issue. An actual kiln would be fired for many, many hours and not a few minutes like this microwave one. Now that I see the result, I’m not sure if this will actually work.
I could try nuking it again to see if I can get the air to release, but I don’t really want to try, it already looks bad. Also, I need to try and get the Designer Liner a lot thinner. I was warned about this but I guess it wasn’t thin enough…. hence the cracking.
I may try again after pondering it a bit, but for now, I’m moving on to other projects.