Saturday, 22 August 2015

The Shrine of Knowledge

Hi everyone,

      Recently Claudia (die amelie from Von Pappe II) was doing a workshop in Eastbourne.... 

"Can we meet up?" I asked....before adding "Hey, why don't you come and stay with us"?

     Claudia and I have been close friends online for ages....It is a really brave person who goes to stay with someone for five days in a foreign country not knowing if the online friendship can match meeting in person!!! But neither of us had any need to worry - it was like we had been friends our whole lives!

     She and I excitedly began planning for her trip over here...mainly plans for doing a workshop just for the two of us (lucky me!) as I couldn't travel to Eastbourne (and I was sad to miss out) and we both wanted to go to London for some antique bric-a-brac hunting....and the rest of the time was spent talking and laughing....Let me tell you, Claudia has the most wonderful sense of humour...I have never laughed so much in my life!

 We had a lovely day doing the workshop creation that I had missed out on......

Our choice of food for the day was, I think you will find, absolutely perfect.....

And this is what I made....

    Claudia had bought over some gorgeous gifts for me -  there was a parcel loaded with fantastic embellishments along with the most beautiful photos, text and script papers - including a handwritten letter dated 1946....that gave a really sad but very beautiful glimpse of history that she had found in a antiques market.

   With all those treasures I couldn't wait to get started on the shrine that she was going to help me make - Claudia is not only an amazing artist but she is the most brilliant and inspiring teacher! I on the other hand am a very nervous student!!! What if I got it all wrong? ;o) I need not have worried at all!

   The shrine is made from two mini canvas frames, covered in French dictionary paper. This was stuck to the frames with Mod Podge glue and the coated with Mod Podge.

When dry it was covered with a liberal wash of  Decoart Transparent Yellow Iron Oxide. It was important to not paint this neatly - as is my usual practice - neat, neat and neat - but instead just sweep it on, allowing it to pool in places. This was all very much against my instincts and I did struggle to just smoosh and dab in a random manner....

I kept looking at it thinking "This isn't neat and tidy...I really don't like it"....of course it isn't neat and tidy!!! - I had wanted to learn how to paint in a grungy style, and here we are - Grunge city!.....but my mind was still very firmly on neat and tidy....

     Then when this was dry I had to water down some red iron oxide paint and drip it down the canvas....Whoa!!!...not liking that either! But eventually I began to see it as fun...a smoosh here, a splash here....getting it wrong? Nope! there is no wrong!

    Then I had to get some Raw Umber paint and dab around the edges....
I looked at it thinking it was all ruined, I resigned myself to be eternally hopeless at grunge and I would return to my neat and tidy constructions. When the frames were dry I picked them up and my jaw dropped as I looked at them - for the first time I was seeing grunge art as I had wanted it to look and hoped it would look...I was finally doing it! 

It does work!

 Turquoise paint was applied to the center of the frames. Crackle glaze was dabbed over the frames - Claudia said a pupil at the workshop had dabbed it on with a finger instead of a brush (This is a really good method of randomly applying Crackle Glaze!) and then Antiquing cream was applied - I chose to use just the Patina Green Antiquing cream as I wanted the frame to be quite light. Carbon Black could be used to make it even grungier, but I decided not to go that far.

 I chose one of the antique dolls that Claudia had given me for the frame - I applied a wash of Raw Umber acrylic paint to make it look grungy and stuck it onto a circle sticker that had had a rusty effect added with Red Iron oxide paint with Turquoise dabbed onto it as a patina effect.

  A rusty heart was added to the other frame with a brass skull.

I stamped some labels and added them to the frames

I then joined them together with a brass hinge and added a brass label holder to the front...

And there it shrine of grungy paint knowledge!

Thank you Claudia for sharing with me some amazing grunge techniques and more importantly for being such a caring and wonderful friend....

Happy crafting!

Laura xxxx

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  1. How wonderful - I have always admired both of your work - such wonderful creativity. So lovely you got together and had a great time. x

  2. Oh wow - this is such a FABULOUSLY SPECTACULAR project Laura. So fun to hear your experience going grungy!!! Hehehehe - smiling big. And what a SUPER picture of the two of you. This was a WONDERFUL post - loved reading it and seeing your creation. So fun! j.

  3. A wonderful piece Laura - so leased you both had such a wonderful time x

  4. What a wonderful, wonderful first visit in blogland after my four weeks holiday break, Laura!!!!
    You don't know - well, no - I suppose you DO know how happy you have made me with this post of yours! I sooooo enjoyed our time together and I soooo loved seeing you follow my lead bravely and succeeding so fantastically at your first grunge project!!!

    I ADORE that shrine of yours as it definitely is "Laurart" at its best - grunge done to perfection and with that sense for the right amount of all the elements that form this amazing little treasure!

    I had such a stressful day today - it was our travel home and our car broke down so it took us almost eight hours instead of three to get back home....and this post has put such a huge smile on my face. The first smile of the day and a much needed one.

    I hope we can do this again some time and soon see each other again!!! Thank you so much for YOUR bravery for inviting me over for almost a whole week!!!! I never felt more at home and welcome!

    Thank you so much for our wonderful friendship! <3

    Claudia xxx

  5. A super grungy project Laura and great you had such a wonderful time together! Love the photo of you both!

  6. I am sooooooooooo jealous Laura. A private workshop with Claudia! She is such an amazing artist. (And you are an incredible student!! ) Wow! Your piece Shrine piece is unbelievable. I've been clicking on the close-ups and seeing those gorgeous colors and textures. I do believe the Cadbury just fueled the creativity. Wow!!!!! (oh I said that already). Sounds like you had such a fantastic time. I'm thrilled. Thanks so much for sharing this with us. -- Mary Elizabeth

  7. Laura, I loved reading your post as to how you were reacting to "no neat and tidy" heehee How fun for the two of you to be able to meet and create together!! What it must have been like I can only imagine- especially after seeing the food of choice! teehee
    Your creation that came from the play is absolutely stunning!! Well done! ")

  8. Oh Laura!! LOVE this shrine and can I say LUCKYYYYYY to have your own private workshop with Claudia!! I thought I heard some laughing going on over there!! :) :)
    You've created a stunning shrine here, Laura!! I'm like you, too--neat, neat, neat....but once you go over to the grungy side, it's hard to go back to neat :)
    I love the pools of color and I love those dripping paint streaks--just Fabulous!! You did good here, Laura!!


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