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Saturday, July 4, 2015

Blessed Is the Nation Canvas

Happy Independence Day to my fellow Americans.  Today I wanted to bring you a little canvas that I created yesterday for the Gelli Arts® Stars and Stripes Challenge.

I've prepared a step out process of how I did the background image.

Step 1:  You want to use full bodied paints for this project, because they allow you more time to work since they dry slower. Start by braying on the red. Tape off your flag with masking tape. Don't forget to tape off the star section in the upper right hand side of the plate, so that when you pull the print the stars on the left.  I'm using a 110lb white cardstock for my print, and an 8x10 Gelli Arts® Gelli® Plate.

Step 2:  Create your star background.   I started by painting a 3x5 Gelli® plate with Ultramarine Blue Paint.  Then using the Crafter's Workshop Balzer Designs Mini Punchinella stencil,  I removed paint through the stencil with a baby wipe.   The stars only cover the bottom section of the plate, so I moved the stencil up and repeated this step for the top area.  I know there are more stars here than are needed for an American Flag.  But the general concept was here, and I felt it too overwhelming to count out 50 stars,  JUST go with it!  (LOL) .  Also note: It is not necessary to use the 3x5 plate for this project. You could use any size plate that you have, and easily use the taped area as a guide from the previous step.  But I had this plate so I decided to use it.   

Step 3:   The photo above is what the plates looks like after the stars are lifted.  Using the plate like a stamp, press it into the area on the print you pulled of the stripes. 

I just love how this flag is starting to look.    It is rough - but that is really what gives it character. 

Step 4:  To help the stars really stand out, I applied a coat of Texture Paste from Prima Marketing.  This paste must dry before going to the next step.   When it is dry, the paste crackles leaving my stars looking more distressed and yummy!  

Step 5:   Sorry there is no photo for this step -  but I added a thin coat of Matte Medium  to the entire paper. NOTE: Use Matte Medium, because it is looser than Gel, and you can get a really fine coat. Allowed it to dry before going to the next step.

Step 6:  Make sure your print is dry from step 5.   Then crumple it into a loose ball. Then flatten the paper out again, to see the texture.  Clean off the 8x10 Gelli® Plate.

Step 7: This step will create a stain for our flag.  Bray on some light brown paint with yellow ocher, and Golden Acrylic Glaze. Pull another print directly onto your flag. Be sure to press firmly so that the glaze gets past the crinkles in the paper.  Sorry I forgot to get a picture, because I had to work super fast and my hands were messy.  But I promise, this will look super scary.  The entire flag will be a horrible brown color.  Allow the glaze to sit for about 30 seconds, Then using baby wipes, begin to remove the brown color.  This glaze will stick to the cracks in the stars, and around the negative areas of the stars, and along the crinkles.  JUST LOVE THE LOOK!  

Step 8: Look at how beautiful my flag looks.  I trimmed it down to an 8x10  removing the boarder around the outside. To make your stripes white again, simply apply gesso with a cosmetic sponge.   Don't worry with the red or blue, because the off color helps the red and blue areas look antiqued. 

Step 9; I prepped an 8x10 canvas with Matte Medium, then  applied my flag to the top.  Squeegee it well with your fingers, and press hard to make sure there are no air bubbles.  I also applied the Matte Medium to the top of the flag. 

Then comes the OOPS!   That little opportunity for additional embellishment! 

Step 10:  Never fear!  This actually turned out to be a blessing.    I combined the Matte Medium with some of the Ranger Tim Holtz  Distress Stain in Vintage Photo and painted it into the areas where the paper had peeled back.  NOTE: Mixing the Matte Medium with the Distress creates a varnish and  seals the distress so it doesn't run when liquid is applied. Now my flag looks as if it were painted onto wood.  Once the entire Flag was completely dry! Then take an archival or permanent ink pad in brown in and lightly rub it over the surface of the flag to further enhance the texture.  

All that is left is to embellish the flag - unfortunately I did not have time to create a process video and do the editing.  So I do not have the step outs for that process.   But if you have followed me for a long time, you will know how I did everything in the embellishment clusters, as it is techniques that I use often. 

In this video -  I will talk you through the embellishment clusters and other details about the canvas. 

Here are some close up photos of the other sections of the canvas. 

I decided to use Psalm 33:12 for my chalkboard:  "Blessed Is The Nation Whose God Is The Lord."  I used chalkboard paint to paint a piece of foam board.   Several coats were needed.  Then I sketched my design with a pencil, and traced over it with a White Gel Pen from Marvy. Allow the ink to dry, then spray with a fixative. I used Clear Acrylic Spray Paint to add a fine mist to protect my drawing. 

The Hymnal I chose was "God Save America" by William G. Ballantine  The second verse really spoke to me, and I wanted to include it.  "God Save America!  Here may all races mingle together as children of God, Founding an empire on brotherly kindness, Equal in Liberty made of one blood! "

You can really see the texture in the stars.    I used a pair of old Jeans and the Tim Holtz Jumbo Tattered Floral's Die from Sizzix to cut out flowers for my embellishment cluster.  Then of course I added my mixture of  Finnabair - Clear Beads and Glass Glitter to Glossy Gel Medium to fill in and add a little sparkle.    

Thank you so much to the men and women who serve this country in the military, and to the loved ones whom lived without them while they served for our freedom.  Your selfless acts have given us our freedoms.   

To get more details about the Gelli Arts® Challenge, please visit their Facebook wall!  Thank you for visiting. 

Now I'm signing out to go celebrate the 4th!



  • Gelli Arts® - 8x10 Gelli® Plate
  • Gelli Arts® - 3x5 Gelli® Plate
  • Speedball - Brayer
  • Daler Rowney - Acrylic Full Bodied Paints - Ultramarine Blue
  • Daler Rowney - Acrylic Full Bodied Paints - Light Brown
  • Daler Rowney - Acrylic Full Bodied Paints - Yellow Ochre
  • Daler Rowney - Acrylic Full Bodied Paints - Scarlet
  • Daler Rowney - Acrylic Full Bodied Paints - White
  • Ranger Ink - Wendy Vecchi - Archival Ink - Potting Soil
  • Ranger Ink - Tim Holtz - Distress Stain - Fired Brick
  • Ranger Ink - Tim Holtz - Distress Stain - Vintage Photo
  • Prima Marketing - Finnabair - Art Ingredients - Glass Glitter
  • Prima Marketing - Finnabair - Art Ingredients - Glass Beads
  • Faber-Castell Design Memory Craft® - Textural Accents - Chalkboard Paint
  • Liquitex - Surface Prep Gesso
  • Liquitex - Matt Medium
  • Liquitex - Glass Gel
  • Golden - Acrylic Glazing
  • Dusty Attic - Geometric Border
  • 7 Gypsies - Metal Corner Embellishments
  • 7 Gypsies - Metal Charms
  • Tim Holtz - Idea-ology - Gears
  • Prima Marketing - Finnabair - Art Extravagance Texture Paste White Crackle
  • GP 110lb Cardstock 8x10
  • Sizzix - Tim Holtz - Alterations -
  • Jumbo Tattered Florals
  • Sizzix - Tim Holtz - Alterations - Tattered Florals
  • Paper Studio - Gemstones
  • Red Velvet Flowers - Company Unknown
  • Applique flowers - Cut from Lace
  • Prima Markting - Finnabar - Vintage Trinkets
  • Tim Holtz - Idea-ology - Grunge Numbers
  • Marvy - Renaissance - White Gel Pen
  • Foam Board
  • Studio Calico - Wood Veneer Stars
  • The Crafter's Workshop -  6x6 Mini Punchinella
  • Wooden Tag Letters
  • Black Wire
  • Prima Marketing - Wood Veneer - Leaves
  • Jenni Bowlin - Rooster Flare

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