Monday, September 25, 2017

I Wish by Frieda Oxenham

There is one golden rule in my studio, and that is that tops have to be put back things the minute I’m finished with whatever I’m using. There is a good reason for that! Sadly though it doesn’t always happen and that’s why I ended up with wet gessoed pages covered in sparkle. I swiped the sparkle container with my sleeve and over it went!  Oh well.  As I found out it did make a difference and I had to adjust my expectations for this spread. That in turn inspired the words I used on the pages. They are addressed mainly to myself. I have learned over the years I have been art making not to be affected too much by outside criticisms but still wage daily war with my inner hyper critical voice.

Here is what happened with this spread.
1.      Gesso 2 pages in your art journal (I used an A4 Dylusions one) and while the gesso is still wet throw an entire container of gold sparkle over it (or not, this bit is not obligatory!). Let dry. 

2.      Add paint and discover that you can’t spread it about easily due to the sharp edges of the sparkles. But continue any way and try and rub it away with a baby wipe through stencil Curlicue Floral. Despite the fact that this is clearly not working continue to do this using different colors of paints till you have a real mess. Alternatively you can skip the first 2 steps and go to a spread in your art journal that you’re far from happy with and take it from there.

3.      Using a brayer and titanium white paint cover the pages as much as you like. I left some of the previous colors on view around the edges of the pages.

4.      Again using Curlicue Floral and a cosmetic sponge stencil on curlicues in different colors all over the spread.

5.      Using a black Archival ink pad and a textural stamp (I used one of the stamps from Marks stamp set designed by Nathalie Kalbach for Stampendous), add some contrast to the pages.

6.      Using stencil Butterfly with Border and black spray paint (I used Liquitex) add half circles on opposite sides of the pages.

7.      Add the border part of Butterfly with Border on the top and bottom of the spread.

8.      Outline the images with a white marker (I used a Sharpie white paint pen with extra fine nib).

9.      Cut out text of your choosing and glue to the pages with a glue stick. Outline with a black Stabilo All pencil.

10.  Edge the pages with a black Archival ink pad.

Although it is not my plan to throw any more pots of sparkle over future spreads I must admit to liking the result. The pages have wonderful texture and grunginess due to all the glitter and the many layers of paint. Perhaps in future I will try a more controlled method using slightly less sparkle.

(C) Frieda Oxenham 2017. To see more of Frieda's work, please visit her BLOG.


  1. "Despite the fact that this is clearly not working continue to do this using different colors of paints till you have a real mess" made me laugh. ... You get an A for perseverance Frieda! And yes your lovely layers make it wonderful.


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