Playing in goo.

Thought I would share a few of the more interesting textured ground samples from a couple weeks ago. They were made in preparation for my nursery rhyme series. I am really very taken with these techniques. Have lots of plans. Warren is wanting to try it out and I am so excited to see what he will come up with.

The basic method is that you rub a bunch of goo on sheet of heavy paper, and then you muck around in it. After it dries you mercilessly rub on layer after layer of acrylic paint. You just keep messing with it until it looks interesting. The trick is to have very little intention. Just go with the flow and the result is impressive. And make sure you’re covered in colours by the end.

The piece above is just gesso and the pointy end of a pick-comb.

This next one is acrylic gel with plastic mesh like you would use for filling a hole someone punched in your wall. There’s collaged photo in there too. When the paint dried I peeled up some of the mesh to leave white lines.

For this next kind you need a printing press. You dip a piece of watercolour paper in water, pat off the excess, then head over to your press. You put down a piece of matboard, then a few flat-ish items (in this case metal sheep), then your wet paper, then another piece of matboard. You wheel the whole sandwich under the press, and voila! Perfect imprints.

This one is just several layers of newsprint and gel with water. You crumple up your paper to give it texture and then collage it onto the layer below. As many layers as you want. Very thick tends to have a leathery texture. You can tear your paper into strips for a different look.

Then we have a glove stuck in gel. I rubbed paint over it and the peeled up the glove after it had dried. Reminds me of gardening.

These next two are made with a comb, this one with gel….

…and this one with gesso. It reminds me of stucco ceilings, or frescoes. Also the beach. Someday I will do this to an entire wall.

I learned this next method at a “Mixed Media with Maps” workshop at the CSEA conference this year. You put a bunch of string down, then soak some thin paper towel in gel and water, and press it down over the string. Put on a bunch more gel for good measure.  Rub over it with your fingers to get out all the air bubbles and accentuate the string.

There’s a whole slew more where those came from, but you get the idea. Fun with goo is addictive, be prepared to shirk your other responsibilities.

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