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Welcome Back

Join me this summer for a series of free workshops. If you enjoy creating, trying new materials and surfaces and want your materials to work for you then this series is for you. Together we will experiment with a limited colour palette to see just how far it will take us.

Take the fear out of mediums and see what they can do for you and your colours. Love Grunge, natural textures perhaps a little metallic. We’ll explore them all this summer. If you are having a staycation this year, then why not have some fun and learn some new techniques with this series.

Adventures in Acrylics: Online workshop

Adventures in Acrylics: Online workshop

Adventures in Acrylics

During the series I’ll be sharing; written and video tutorials on all kinds of ways to use your materials in exciting ways. These techniques will work in a variety of settings from surface decoration, altered art, art journalling and more.

You Will Need

Core Colours;

Winsor & Newton: Galeria ; Flow formula acrylic paint. Available in set of 10x 60 ml tubes. This set contains;

W&N Galeria Acrylic Paint

W&N Galeria Acrylic Paint

  • 120: Cadmium Yellow Medium hue
  • 095: Cadmium Red Hue
  • 203: Crimson
  • 706: Winsor Blue
  • 522: Phthalo Green
  • 744: Yellow Ochre
  • 074: Burnt Sienna
  • 554: Raw Umber
  • 386: Mars Black
  • 644: White

To this starter pack add the following colour; 060 Buff Titanium

Core Tools

If you have painted in the past or paper craft you will probably have most of these things to hand. Go on a foraging expedition for the following items:

  • Craft Sheet (non stick, protects your work surface and easy to clean).
  • Water pots. (jam jars are fine)
  • Something to mix colours on. I use a white enamel plate, its easy to clean and available from camping shops
  • Car sponge. (Yep, one of Halfords big yellow ones)
  • Brushes. You choice of size and shape. If you haven’t painted before Sheena has a set available from Crafters Companion.
  • Palette knife. You can get cheap plastic sets if you want some different styles to play with, my most used one is Royal Langnickel K4.
  • Bar of soap (for cleaning out the paint) Do not let the paint dry on your tools and brushes. Once set you cannot remove it.

Surfaces

Something to paint onto. I’ll be using a variety of surfaces, but to get started try;

  • Mount board. One side must be white, and if pos try to get one with a black on the other side.
  • Pad of acrylic paper
  • Daler Rowney Gesso primer; White. It’s a good idea to gesso your board before you start, as it helps the paint move better on the surface. Try it with & withourt for comparison.

You could also try, paper blanks (boxes/board books etc), wood and clay. If you wish to experiment further, gather any surface you wish to try out.

Over the coming months I’ll be adding a few extra colours and some mediums as we continue the journey. Rather than post them all here, this is all you will need to get started and I hope as I post the reviews of the products and tutorials using them, you will be tempted to try a few to take these essential items, to the next level.

Now you don’t have to choose between the price of the course vs materials. I hope you will join me for an amazing journey with this medium. You can do so much with acrylics from thin washes through to thick dimension effects. Mediums mix things up and can completely change how the paint behaves. They are very versatile and these Winsor and Newton Galeria paints are very affordable, even the BIG 250ml tubs are only about £10! These have no odour and the flow forumula is a joy to use.

Links

The best place to start to source these materials is my art supplies tab at the top of the blog. I have listed the main manufacturers that I use and also some great discount stores too. I link to that page so the links will stay updated if the sites move ;) Highly recommend, Jackson’s, Art Discount and also Cowling and Wilcox.

  • Here is a PDF version of this post, if you want to keep a shopping list to hand ;) BCR Adventures in Acrylics Materials list
  • There is also a dedicated workshop page; Adventures in Acrylics Workshop where all the related posts will also be linked to. At the side of the blog, there is also a grab button you can add to your own site, which will take you directly to the workshop page.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :) :) :)

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What are you reading?

Welcome Back

In a twist to the popular ‘What’s on your work desk’ I wondered if it would work with books?

What are you reading?

At Christmas I was lucky enough to recieve Billy Showell’s book and DVD set; Watercolour Flower Portraits. I’m hoping to get to grips with watercolour and learn how to get the best from colours, mixing and blending. Once I’ve finished reading it, I’ll post a review.

Book; Watercolour Flower Portraits by Billy Showell

Book; Watercolour Flower Portraits by Billy Showell

There are few opportunities to get to the kind of architecture that I would most like to draw and paint, but there are plenty of plants and flowers in the garden. The DVD has been excellent and being a visual learner,it has really helped. I’m going to carefully read the book and practice as much as I can. Maybe leaves at the moment, till the flowers come back out.

How about you?

What are you reading?

On the novel front I really enjoy Jack Sheffield Teacher series of books. Thank goodness for the Kindle. Being dyslexic, the options for altering how the text appears on the Kindle has made a huge difference to me. In the past if a publisher printed a book in a text style I couldn’t read, no matter how much I loved the author, I couldn’t read the book. Now with a Kindle I can choose a font, line spacing and font size. It’s so much better, also the E ink that the Kindle uses makes it much easier to read too.

If you are struggling reading ‘regular novels’, do try a few e readers in the stores at the moment, they could make all the difference to you too.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

Seth Apter is a superb mixed media artist and I was lucky enough to take part in his art collaboration project ‘The Pulse’. The Pulse is an interview with artists from around the world.

This sunday my comments were included in the latest part of The Pulse to be published; The Masterclass 5; Familiar Faces.

Master Class: Part of Seth Apter's mixed media art collaboration project; The Pulse

The question was asked: ‘If you could take a class from one artist from anytime in history, including the present, who would it be and why?’

To find out which artist I chose, please visit Seth’s blog, the link is shown below. I am also super excited for the publication of Seth’s book in March; The Pulse of Mixed Media, as he’s told me something I submitted will be included in it.

Links

Do stop by Seth’s amazing blog, his art is fantastic and really inspires me to get the paint out, every time I visit.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Happy New Year

Welcome Back

Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas, hubby and I had a quiet one at home this year (I’ve had a sinus infection for 3 weeks and didn’t want to inflict it on anyone).

Had some wonderfully inspiring books for Christmas, a collage book, a sewing book from my best friend. DH gave me an awesome book about Tuner after I’d been so inspired after seeing his work at Petworth this summer. MIL gave me a couple of books about flower painting, which I hope to try when the weather and light improves.

Looking forward to getting back to making more tutorials again, need some good light for filming and then I’ll get busy. Really want to make some using Craft Artist software by Serif, but need to work out how to get screen shots and shorten LONG descriptions that my notes currently use with it. I’ve had more practice with the software now, so looking forward to making some more complex projects with it this year.

Keeping the reviews coming, when budgets allow, and of course there will still be inspiration with challenges and pictures of my finished projects too. Look forward to sharing ideas with you all and to see what you are creating too.

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year and hoping that you can make your creative dreams come true.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

To conclude the review of the year kinda week, I’d like to share;

My Favorite Tutorials of 2011

They have to be working with Kuretake products and the video tutorials I made using a selection of their pens.

Rock n Roll Flowers with Zig Art & Graphic pens

Rock n Roll Flowers with Zig Art & Graphic pens

Rock n Roll flowers were my most favorite as after creating these with their Brushables range, I discovered their Art & Graphic pens, which gave a different more subtle effect which is beautiful. I hope to spend more time playing with these products next year and share some more ideas with you for how to use them.

How about you?

What has been the tutorial that you most enjoyed in 2011, doesn’t have to be one of mine ;) Would love to hear what really got your creative juices flowing.

Links

Video tutorials will be back in 2012, I have plans for several and just need to wait for good light to be able to film.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

As the year comes to a close I thought it would be a good time to look  back at some of my favorite things of 2011. Today I’d like to share;

My favorite products of 2011

Like last time there are two products that stood out for me this year.

First place by a country mile is; Serif Craft Artist software.

Craft Artist Platinum Edition by Serif

Craft Artist Platinum Edition by Serif

I adore this product as it is so simple to use but has so much versatility and superb digikits. It has a lot of the features of products like Adobe Photoshop Elements but without the HUGE learning curve.

My wonderful husband gave me a copy of this and I’ve had so much fun with it this year and have collected lots of digikits. I love to use it to try out ideas and techniques and especially love that all the wonderful elements can be used over and over again, which when you are on a small budget makes a big difference. Serif have digi kits on their Daisy Trail site and some of them are even free :) Perfect when you want to treat yourself but the budget says no.

In second place; Brittany Birch knitting needles

Brittany; Birch knitting needles

Brittany; Birch knitting needles

Trying to knit with RSI is foolish! It hurts, but if you are mad enough to risk it, try these birch needles. I can only knit a row or two at a time and have to rest for some time between attempts but these needles are warm to the touch and so much kinder to the hands than anything else. Super smooth like metal no drag like plastic and they are nice and light to hold too.

How about you?

Those were my favourites of the year, but how about you, what product have you tried this year and now love? Would love to hear about it.

Links

To find out more about the items I’ve mentioned, follow the links below to their original posts.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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Welcome Back

As the year comes to a close I thought it would be a good time to look  back at some of my favorite things of 2011. Today I’d like to share;

My favorite projects of 2011

I have two favorites;

First place goes to. Gift Bags.

Holly Gift Bags with handles and tags

Holly Gift Bags with handles and tags

This was a project I started only recently and its a favorite, as I can see a lot of potential for designing different styles and shapes with it as well as lots of different papers for it too.

A close second goes to; Hand Warmers

Hand warmer, with gift bag and instructions tag

Hand warmer, with gift bag and instructions tag

This is a personal favorite with me, as thanks to RSI and bad circulation they are a simple project to put together but also using them makes a huge difference to pain levels. So a winner for several reasons :)

How about you?

What project have you most enjoyed creating or reading about this year? Would love to hear about it or see pictures of your finished pieces.

Links

To find out more about the gift bags and the hand-warmers here are link to their original posts.

Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon

Billie :)

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