Thursday, May 22, 2014

Art Lesson: Watercolor Painted Vintage Wall Art

I was feeling the need to make my mantel sing of spring,
so I dug up these old wooden oval pieces I had once painted on and decided I did not like.
I decided to paint the edging of these ovals in black.

I found some vintage images on the Graphics Fairy of birds and printed them up in the center of each page by pasting them into Word and situating them to the size and place that I wanted them.

 (We've had a visiting blue jay to our yard in the last 2 weeks who is as blue of a blue jay I have ever seen).

I wanted to add a bit of color, so I splashed water all over the page with a paint brush
and then added some blue
and then some touches of red.

 Once that had settled into the paper a little bit,
I began painting the bird with a darker and less watered down blue.

 I filled in the leaves, branch, and flowers as well.

 Once the jay was done, I followed the same process for the Robin picture.

It is always a nice break to just paint an image that is already all drawn up for you.
Who doesn't love a bit of coloring-book style painting?

 I let these dry thoroughly and then cut them to fit into the oval shapes
(I did this by tracing the full oval shape onto the page and then cutting it down evenly on all sides until it fit, but a piece of tracing paper would also work to be more precise.
Laying it into the frame and running a pencil around the inside edge carefully should work).

Once I had them cut, I spread glue all over the backs of the images and then pasted them into the ovals, using paint containers to hold the image down on all the edges.

 Wanting a more vintage look, I heated some water and, using a damp teabag,
dabbed the warmed tea bag all over the image until it was stained as I wanted.
(This could also be done before gluing the image into the frame).

 The teabag was so used up, it cracked at bit and shed some bits of tea onto the images,
but I left them there to dry to add more character.

Once dried, I painted two coats of Mod Podge, allowing the first coat to dry completely before applying the second coat.
I then applied a squeeze of Martha Stewarts all purpose gloss paint from the bottle it comes in around the edges to make them look sealed in to the frame.  I used a paint brush to carefully brush it in and a few damp q-tips to clean up any smears.

Here they are all finished.  Can you see the difference with the Mod Podge?
The shine makes them look more like framed pictures.

I then put some frame wall hangers on the backs of the bird art
and hung them over the mantel in the living rooom

They added a touch of quaint, older looking decor to the wall with no expense at all:
I just recycled and used the supplies that I had...
aren't those the best kinds of projects?

Have you added any spring to your home this season?

I am still working on the bee picture.
It is coming along pretty well, but I am trying to wait until it is all finished before I share the processes I tried with it.

Thanks for stopping by!

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