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Let’s Play

I guess it’s been two weeks since my last post–I needed to fly up to Minnesota for a family emergency.  It was 30-below windchill when I got there and not much warmer when I left.  In fact it has been bitterly cold or sleeting/snowing here in NW Arkansas.  I hope this last snowfall is the end of winter here.  At least the sun is shining!  Well actually, the moon is shining but sun is forecast for the second day in a row.


I didn’t know what to work on when I finally felt like doing something–my work table was covered with art and bookbinding supplies.  I’ve been trying to get to a book about Halloween, requested by my sister, but just can’t seem to get started.  Whatever–I decided that I needed to organize my supplies just a little better so I could actually find things.  I saved three mailing boxes last year that I think will suit my needs, but of course I cannot just throw stuff in the box and label it.  Oh no, I have to decorate it so what better excuse is there to try new techniques.  My daughter and I were going to take a pastel drawing class.  I already had a box of soft pastels and then purchased pastel paper. Alas, the class was cancelled because not enough people signed up–rats.  Here are the supplies I used.


I forgot to take a picture of the first step, but I used the long sides of the chalk and covered my paper with whites, then starting in the center with the lightest to darkest, used all the neutrals (greys and browns).  Then I again started in the middle and blended it all with a blender stump until it looked like this.


Next I covered the entire piece with Golden Acrylic Ground for Pastels.  I used my metal spackling spatula because the brush was not working so well–I did about one third of the page at a time, spreading it vertically and then horizontally.  At the end I needed to catch the corners and left a little bit more texture.  I let this dry overnight but before I quit for the day, I free-cut some letters from a coffee cup sleeve from a place not Starbucks because the color was perfect and I loved the texture.  I used a toothpick to paint the edges to give them a little definition.  The paper is curled somewhat for this project; otherwise, I could weight it down after it dries to flatten it.


This morning at an ungodly hour I proceeded, mixing a little bit of brown acrylic paint with water in a mini-mister.  I set up a cardboard paint booth, laid down some wood gears, and sprayed.  Too much water, so I mopped it up with paper towel and then mixed up some black/water and used a brush to add some speckles.  Load a round brush with the paint mixture and tap the handle with another brush.


I try not to angst about my work, thinking that I ruined my pastel page–by the time I put the lettering on and whosknowswhatelse, I will have a nice cover for my supply box.  I have two more boxes to cover so I can try, try again.  It’s all good.

Here I have Mod Podged the lettering down.  Tomorrow (or maybe later today) I’ll decide how to finish the page and adhere it to the box.


Have a great day–may it be sunny and full of creativity.  When in doubt, make art.