Monday, December 6, 2010

Paintin' Away!

Okay, here's a quickie post. Colleen, Annette and I each bought a DVD called Painted Papers by Elizabeth St. Hilaire Nelson so the 3 of us could paint together, though I live in Arkansas, Colleen is in Colorado, and Annette is in Texas. It has proven to be a fun technique, and we're all planning on doing more. I've always loved to work in mixed media, collage, and paper sculpture, and this technique showed me how to take it a step further by beginning on a birch board.

I bought a board @ Home Depot, and Jim cut it into 3 pieces, each 16X24 inches, even sanded them down for me, and I covered the front of one with clear gesso, loosely drew on my image of blueberries, then painted on watery acrylics, enjoying the oozing and runny effects. I had a stack of rice papers and mulberry paper, along with some printed sheets that I'd painted with more watery acrylics in shades of purple, green, blue, yellow, and near-black all ready for tearing and gluing.

The collaging process can either be tedious or relaxing, depending on your current state of mind. I tend to enjoy involved techniques and loved tearing tiny scraps of paper, aiming for shapes that reflected their destination, curves and circles for the berries and graceful strips for the leaves. When you're tearing, the shapes are never perfect, and that's a part of the artsy charm of this type of collage. You can opt either to cover all the under painting or leave parts of it showing. I wasn't giving up those pretty drips and runs, so I left quite a bit of mine showing.

I added some leaves that I cut from the painted paper and glued them loosely with the matte gel in order to give more dimension. As the piece neared completion (or where I considered the stopping place to be), I painted in touches of highlights on berries and leaves, some hand writing here and there, touches of gold leaf, and a few embossed stampings using a verdigris powder I've had for years and dread running out of it.

And now I still haven't decided on a design for my Christmas cards, so I'd best get going on that, but I'll be sharing more painted papers collages when there's time. Don't you just love this time of year??
Love, cat


  1. Nice work Cat. :)Thank you for the mention. folks can find me at

  2. Love it all of it Cat. I thought there was some gold leaf in there when I was looking at it before. So glad you didn't cover up your drippies. Hugs Annette from Texas

  3. Oh what fun! I love collage, 'cause of the goodies you've tucked away for me to find when I look. :)