|Oh.....the possibilities......the yumminess.....the COST|
Sorry for the delay on this, the first post on gel mediums. I have been slightly mentally distracted and figured I really needed all my faculties for this series!
Here is what I want to propose in the next couple of posts~~having a lot of gel mediums is a great thing, but when you don't use the specialty gels that often, or if you live out of the U.S. and are paying premium prices for them it is hard to pick what to buy when they ALL look so darned GOOD! (and are, I must admit)
So what I will be using, unless otherwise stated is a soft gloss gel medium. I happen to have Golden and Liquitex both, have used both a fair amount and really see little difference other than Golden has almost no *acrylic* smell and Liquitex does. If this is a factor for you, (allergies, etc) then I would say purchase the Golden Soft Gel in gloss.
Now for the fun part.
There are all those specialty mediums that look intriguing but you haven't a clue what to do with them. Or how much you would actually use even the small sampler sized jar. I loved Golden's Pumice Gel and had the tiny sampler sized jar, but found two things that I have to give it dings for.
First, I had to add a regular gel to it to make it malleable enough to knife or brush it onto a surface and get it to stick.
Second, even with the cap fixed on tight, I only got to use half of it before it dried up.
That gave me pause before ordering a large tub and got the brain rolling on *what can I use as a substitute*??? And so it started---how can I replicate some of these?
And then there is that wonderful glass bead gel......no I have not purchased it yet. I see it in others work and wonder if I would use the tub up or have most of it lost to petrification. (not to be confused with putrification, which is another story all together, like when I tried to dry out the used coffee grounds and they grew mold instead...)
So I began scouting around the studio for things to put IN gels. Things that would add texture, simulate some of the ready made gels, but allow me to mix a tiny amount on the palette and not go broke. (and I will fess up; I'd rather be ORDERING.....there is nothing like getting a shipment of art supplies....)
Dollar stores and outlet stores are great places to look for things to put in gels. I have purchased decorative sand (floral section), tiny pebbles, glass round beads, and then my stand by from the pet supplies, Budgie Grit.
|Cheap decorative sand, glass beads, and my stand by~~Budgie Grit! A lot of bang for the buck!|
I also have used well dried---and BIG EMPHASIS on the WELL DRIED part---spent loose tea. If you know someone who has a nice little cafe that serves specialty tea, especially the Jasmines, ask for a filter full of the stuff after brewing. It will take a day or so in a colander lined with toweling and a bit of stirring, but you end up with an amazing organic product that mixes well with the gels.
On line, American Science Supply is an interesting place to visit as they have arts and crafts leftovers and other odd things you just might NEED. *ahem* Yes, need. I got my assortment of glass beads from them, on sale. Their catalogs are fun too, just for evening reading and getting the thought process going, or more like, "What on God's green earth was some of this stuff ever used for?" And they have a sense of humor too.
I will do four canvasses with a stencil technique that I can claim no credit for; I found it on marianne's art blog and she does some amazing work with all different types of gels and transfers. I highly recommend giving her a good read if you want to learn more about gels in finished products, and her experiments as well.
|Foam meat or vegetable tray cut down, cookie cutter for stencil, canvas primed dark and a few leftover paperclay hearts to get this party started.|
So if you want to follow along, you'll need one small tub of soft gloss gel, items to put in it, and either canvas boards (good for experiments as well as a final product) or canvas. Paints, etc.....you know, all the normal goodies.
And remember, I have been making some of this up as I have gone along, so you're seeing what happens just as I do! The only thing I have tried to clean up is the junk on my work table, and that failed miserably. LOL!!!
Now, off to the gel races.....