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Due to the Corona virus, the Surface Design workshop has been postponed until this summer. The new date for it will be announced when the Art House re-opens.


I'll be teaching this one-day workshop on March 14, 2020 at the Art House! Learn to design your own unique papers and other materials for collage, card making, scrap booking, journal making etc. I supply all the materials. All you need to bring is a sack lunch and a beverage. Hours are 10-4; fee is $90 per person. Register online at or call 678-543-5777. Act now! Seating is limited!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Serendipitous Art -- From a Paper Towel!

I always wipe my brushes on paper towels to remove excess acrylic paint from the bristles. A while back, I was painting away with a riot of colors in a slightly watery manner, and was using a slightly dampened paper towel to wipe off my brush. When I was finished, I didn't discard the paper towel, I just set it aside to dry.

The next day, a different painting had me using a lot of golden yellow that was fairly diluted. (I use fluid acrylics; adding water to them creates a watercolor-like wash.) In this instance, I had about a quarter cup of this watered down paint left over at the end of the day. So, on a whim, I applied it as a "background" color to the paper towel I had used the previous day. Here's what I ended up with:

I kinda liked the effect -- cheerfully colored brushstrokes with a washy look -- but didn't have any use for it in mind, so I just added it to my paper stash.

Then a week or so ago I bought a paper punch on Amazon that makes perfect one-inch squares. I had a field day going through old magazines, looking for ads with colors or graphics that caught my eye. I like to use snippets from magazines to make little collage postcards I send to friends and family. It's a good way to upcycle and it gives me something creative to do when I'm watching TV at night. Here's a postcard made with the new punch:

After making up a couple of these using magazine pages, I got the idea to try using that paper towel. Much to my surprise, the punch had no trouble slicing into it, consistently yielding pieces with nice clean edges. With this punch, you can turn it over to see exactly what you're punching out, so I tried to position it over the choicest parts. When I had a couple dozen pieces or so, I adhered 24 of them to a piece of 4x6 watercolor paper using matte medium. Here's the result:

As each piece was glued down, I brushed more matte medium over it to seal it well. The surface texture is still apparent, which gives the piece a very dreamy, "soft" look, I think. I really like the way this little collage turned out. It tickles me and tugs at my heart at the same time, knowing that it's not meant for me to keep.

But, as a postcard, I don't think it would survive the rigors of the postal system. So I'll put it in a nice mat and offer it for sale through my Etsy shop later this week. I hope someone who likes it as much as I do will buy it and enjoy it each day as it brightens a space in their home!

 Text and images ©2015 Lynn Edwards

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