There are some stencils that I grab for whenever I start to make backgrounds and others that play a leading role, getting all the attention when I reach the upper layers of my spreads. And the ones I have used here are shining examples of such stencils. For the background it is Open Buildings designed by Carolyn Dube and for the foreground Ripples Small stencil designed by Michelle Ward. I have used other stencils in this spread too to add more texture to the pages. They play a supporting role to the main ones.
I never know how my spreads are going to look when I begin and these pages sprang from an online challenge to use colours you don’t usually go for. I love all colours but I prefer them bright, so for the challenge I went for deeper, darker colours and discovered I liked them so much I wanted to keep on using them. This spread is one of the results.
Here are the steps I took to become a High Flyer:
1. Gesso the pages of your spread (I’m working in a Dylusions A4 art journal)
2. Collage on imagery using a glue stick. Although it may look like I collaged on randomly I have made sure to repeat the images (such as the birds and the squares) at least twice on the page (usually 3 times) and on different places. You are looking for a sense of balance. I used birds from a piece of wrapping paper, more wrapping paper (in pink and gold), vintage images from a Technical Drawing book, handmade paper with black squares on it, Tim Holtz’s tissue wrap Postale, and tissue wrap from 7Gypsies with French street names. Don’t cover the entire spread, but make sure to leave some empty spaces to fill with paint and crayons later.
3. Using Distress Crayons in the dark colours I mentioned above I scribbled on the colours and then removed it again through Open Buildings with a baby wipe.
4. Add Fluid Acrylics in matching colours (I usually do this with my fingers so that I can get the paint exactly where I want it) and again remove it using Open Buildings and a baby wipe. You will notice this won’t always work on some of the collaged areas (the handmade paper was particularly temperamental) but don’t worry about that.
5. Stencil on areas of stencil Ripples Small stencil using black acrylic paint and a cosmetic sponge, again balancing the imagery on the pages.
6. Stencil on the image from the small stencil from August 2015 StencilGirl StencilClub several times, using white acrylic paint and a cosmetic sponge.
7. Spray through the small stencil from November 2014 StencilGirl StencilClub with Brusho Acrylic Shimmer Spray Turquoise (or colour of your choice).
8. Cut out an additional image (in my case a bird) from the wrapping paper as well as words to suit your page and glue them on with a glue stick.
9. Outline the circles, the birds and the text with white and black permanent markers, and add some doodles to the pages (such as little circles).
(C) Frieda Oxenham 2017. To see more of Frieda's work, please visit her BLOG.