Monday, May 24, 2010

Further Along The Road To "La Nouvelle Orleans", Under The Live Oaks......


This is getting long enough that I am to a point I am having to go back and read the blog to know what I have already put up! LOL! That's not good......  ;-)
On the other hand, it gives you an idea of why these pieces take me so darned long to do.....
The live oak leaves above had been coated with the following:
Golden Acrylic Glaze, Golden Soft Gel medium, and a bit of fluid acrylic was put on to enhance the color. I do not know long term if they will stay as is or brown. I figure to err on the side of safety.
At any rate, I still found them a little blah, so I got out my DecoArt Crackle Medium and coated all of them with that. The leaves on the left are just with the medium after it dried and the ones on the right have a thin layer of raw umber glazed on, worked into the crackle and wiped off.


This close up shows it better. Depending on what you want or need, one could stop at any of the points along the way with the leaves. I just felt since this is a piece about age, the darker leaf would be more evocative of that feel. I can definitely see uses for the leaf on the left, with the addition of a light color to seep into the crevices. It would be totally different. I think it's pretty obvious I love experimenting with these things......!
One thing to check if you try this;  make sure the color has dried before proceeding. It doesn't take long. Otherwise you will either stick to the leaf or lose part of the color. (don't ask...)


Each leaf was coated heavily on the back with Golden Heavy Gel in a matte finish. Since the leaves are not flat, the medium fills in the space between the leaf and canvas. Generally I would have more than I needed on the leaf.....


.....Start by spreading some with a palette knife to the edges and add until it appears the whole cavity is full.
One other thing I want to point out, and sorry this is out of order; the corners with the paperclay fleurs were painted with a soft black, dry brushed into the texture of the grit and gel. When it was dry, I used a bright aqua-blue, getting a tiny bit on a brush and just allowing it to sweep over the very top of the textured ground. This combination of color works well in other projects too, but is particularly suitable for the work at hand. The photo below shows the corner treatment a bit better.


Some of the leaves were determined NOT to stick down, so a few stray paint bottles solved the problem. In areas where the medium oozed out, I used a damp brush to remove excess and smooth all the exposed edges, such as the visible area under the small Golden jar. These will be painted later to disappear. You also can see an acorn half I have inserted under one of the leaves; it was luck that one leaf was greatly curled and wrapped the acorn perfectly.


Remember me saying that with St. Louis Cathedral being offset from the center of the circle I was going to have to adjust a few things? That came in the addition of the small oak twig, to circle the top and push the focal point more to the left, where the building is. The twig was coated with several brushings of soft gloss gel, gently cracked to hold the shape and coated again. I added a few highlights of paint to it as well.
And now I have to take a break. I think I am writing a book here---I had no idea, really, when I started posting the step by step what I was getting in for! Bear with me on the off days when there is not a new post; these are truly more time consuming than they might appear!
I must add it is interesting to analyse my own work by having to describe what I usually just *do*. I did not realize I put that much thought and effort into small details. It is something I do pretty much by rote; I don't think about it, I do make decisions but mostly I trust my eye and obviously there is a portion of my brain cranking away to make all the right connections. Each piece has it's own story.
Oh dear...I sound pretty pretentious now.
But y'all know me better than that, yes?
Now go create something wonderful and in a day or two, I'll be back with more of my favorite city!

Pax.

35 comments:

Silke said...

So so so cool!!! I love seeing how this is taking shape! Just beautiful and wonderful how each little step has such a big impact. Can't wait to see what happens next... Love, Silke

P.S. Would you like a box of Spanish moss?! ; )

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

(Anne grins from ear to ear....ooooo....frightening!)
Silke, you know I love anything I can stick into gel and make immobile! LOL!!
This has been fun, but I'm getting to the point I am forgetting photos---I think I get excited as a piece becomes closer to completion and the brain goes off....

XXOO!!
Anne

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

I really really love the way this is coming along - it's just marvelous!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Thanks Tristan!
I have to admit I am rather fond of the piece, though it is not as colorful as some of my others.
This gives you an idea of what went into the piece I did for you on that blog give away!

XXOO!!
Anne

marianne said...

fun to see the step by step. i know what you mean- when i slow down enough to do that it always surprises me. you get in the zone & just go otherwise. sometime i look at a photo of point a and one of point b and have little recollection of the journey! must experiment with that crafty crackel glaze...

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Marianne,

LOL!! Yep! I don't know where I've been or where I'm going, I just know I *GOT THERE*!!!
I am looking up another crackle medium; if I find the name I will send it to you. I saw it in one of my books and want to see if it is still available.

XXOO!!
Anne

Vicki~TheMiddleSister said...

Now, I'm getting anxious to see the finished piece. So cool!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Me too Vicki!
ME TOO!!! ;D

XXOO!!
Anne

yoborobo said...

Oh, Anne - this is coming along so beautifully. Can I say I am IN LOVE with your corners? And I am in awe of the leaf process. Bowing to your superior knowledge of glazes, mediums, leaves, and all things arty. :) xox!! Pam

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Pam, I am not sure anything is *superior knowledge*---you must understand I just jump in with both feet and eyes closed! LOL!!! I do not know, long term, what will happen with the leaves. I am hoping they hold up. I think there is enough preservative on them....kinda like being embalmed!
HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! :D

XXOO!!
Anne

Janet Ghio said...

I wondered how you were going to preserve those leaves and then get them to stick. Looking good!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Janet, I've discovered if you put enough gel medium on ANYTHING, it generally STicks, and I figure should be somewhat preserved! LOL!
I love flying by the seat of my pants.....I hope they don't rip out! ;)

XXOO!!
Anne

kj said...

you are immortalizing those leaves! i'll bet word is spreading in the neighborhood that this crazy vibrant woman is giving leaves a new leaf on life and soon you will have a waiting line of leaves at your front door.

and you make wrinkles look so sophisticated!

have a ball, anne. it is indeed fun to follow along. keep talking to yourself.

love
kj

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey KJ,

I wonder if I spread some of the color on MY wrinkles if they would look better??? LOL!!!
(maybe I should just dip myself in the gel medium...hmmmmmm...)
God only knows what will be lining up at my door.....HAHAHAHAHA!!!!

XXOO!!
Anne

Deborah said...

Good grief woman, you can't leave anything alone! Painting the twig?!? teehee. This is quite fun watching the creative process. Looking fantastic already. And NO antiquing on the face...it could run and ruin the blonde. **kisses** Deb

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Deborah...you NAUGHTY GIRL!!!! :D
I had not even THOUGHT of that connotation of my remark...
Okay, promise I won't wntique my face.
It's doing that on it's own at a frighteningly rapid pace.
I'll stick to art.

XXOO!!
Anne

Jan said...

Always fascinating to read your process. This piece would be closer to finished if you weren't documenting it all for us, I believe we all appreciate the documenting. You are very patient.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hmmmmm Jan,

Me, patient?
No, I think it is more OCD or nuts. Either would be fine! LOL!! ;)
It's a learning lesson for us all, eh?

XXOO!!
Anne

Marie S said...

Anne this is outstanding!! What a work of art. I love the colors and the feel of the piece.
I love filling things in with gell medium too!!
That stuff is so much fun!!
Have a great week darling.
love and hugs.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Marie,

I need a sign that says:
"Will work for gel medium (large containers only)"

LOL!!! I could not function without it!!! :D
Have a good one!

XXOO!!
Anne

Serena said...

I love how you used the aqua-blue to sweep over the darkened corners....very nice touch! The leaf process is so interesting and the crackle followed with raw umber is very effective at aging and adding interest to the leaf.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Serena,

This truly is one of those pieces that is fun to hold for the different textures. There is so much you can do with the grit and gel; I have a ball with it!

XXOO!!
Anne

Leslie said...

Oooh, that is going to be amazing when finished and thanks for the tute on preserving the leaves.

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Leslie, just remember...and I say this again.....long term, I really don't know how the leaves will react. They *should* do well, considering a Japanese Maple I put under clear contact paper years ago that held it's color.
BUT!
I am not sure.
On the other hand, if they age, well, they age. We all do! LOL!!!

XXOO!!
Anne

Anna Rosa Designs said...

Hi Anne,
Oh, that will teach me for not coming to blogland for a few days-lol
I've been here for about half an hour reading all your steps and thoughts and looking at your pictures on how you achieved this piece so far!
Wow, looks great honey!
Hugs,
Anna

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Anna,

Same thing happens to me when I have a few days off---everything goes berserk!!!
But I can say, I am ready for this piece to be done. HAve a teleconference tonight, so no posts tomorrow....or work for that matter.

XXOO!!
Anne

Elena said...

I'm playing catch up and WOW! you've advanced by leaps & bounds on this piece. It is beautiful~I want to come sit and watch you work. Loving it and waiting patiently for more :)

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hey Elena,

You're not all that far away! I'm three hours +/- from Chicago. Or if the wind is blowing right, faster!!! LOL!!! :D

XXOO!!
Anne

Queenmothermamaw said...

Definitely getting prettier all the time. Quite an interesting process you have shown us.
QMM

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi QMM,

Thanks! I am hoping to have another post up tomorrow, but have half a day with Hubby today, sooooo, sometimes work doesn't happen! (but I love him!)
I am excited to finish the piece now, especially since everyone is *watching*!!!

XXOO!!
Anne

Magpie's Mumblings said...

I'm finally getting caught up. Someone may already have mentioned this...have you ever tried preserving leaves using glycerin? I'm not sure of the method, but I'm sure a 'googl' would tell all. Seems to me that they keep their colour and their pliability with it. Also seems to me that it's available at drug stores (but don't quote me!).

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi MA,

I have preserved leaves in glycerin before and noticed two things;

First, they have to be oof-the-tree-fresh to retain some of the color

Second, they take a fair amount of time to really preserve and always ahve an odd *feel* to them, such that I would be afraid to use them in art.

The one's I've done for bouquet use were fine for that, but since I was starting with dry leaves, I figured encasing them in medium would be the best bet.
I always want to do stems of the magnolia, and never think of it till the leaves fall in October....
Oh, and you are right--glycerin is still available at the drug store but the amount you need for leaves is usually cheaper when purchased by the companies that make products for leaf and flower preservation. I don't know if that drug store type is pharamaceutical grade and that is the difference???

XXOO!!
Anne

Kellys Art Journaling/ Sharing The Journey said...

What a beautiful piece. Thank you for showing the steps in making it. You have a very lively blog and I love that!

Anne Huskey-Lockard said...

Hi Kelly!

Thanks for the comments.
I have one more post with this piece and then it is DONE!!! (yay!)
I'll stop by your blog... :)

XXOO!!
Anne

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Thanks for the info about glycerine - I've never tried it so didn't know how well it would work. I don't suppose it is on my immediate horizon to attempt anyway, but it's good to know the various app's for it.

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