Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Personalized Canvas

Now that I'm comfortable painting
Cardinals, it's time to switch it up and
leap outside my comfort zone ...
to Hornets!

I painted this personalized canvas for a
teenager - I wanted to make it big and bold
(since my last hornet was only 2" tall!)
Let's pretend I still have a photo
of the blank 12" x 24" canvas ... and that
I took pictures while I base coated it.
uh - hm.
Visualize a paper plate with a large puddle
of dark gray acrylic paint and a large
overlapping puddle of white acrylic paint on it.
Now visualize rolling a sponge paint
roller randomly through the paint and
applying it to the canvas.
Does your vision look something like this?
I made a pattern of the boy's name and
the oversized hornet and used
transfer paper and a stylus to get the
main pattern lines onto the canvas.
Then I took a flat brush and wet it,
blotted it on a paper towel, and dipped one
corner of the brush in a small puddle
of the dark gray paint.

Next I went around the left and lower
sides of each main pattern line,
reapplying paint to the brush as necessary
(usually after every long stroke).

You're just going for some quick dimension here,
don't focus too much on perfection.
I always shade again after the base-coating
has been completed.
Next, I added some short, quick highlights
on the top and right sides of the letters
with white acrylic paint loaded the
same way; on a clean blotted flat brush
with the paint only on one corner.
I base coated the main design.
(using school colors and more than
one coat for opaque coverage)
Yikes!  Scary eyes!
More fitting for a demon than an
aggressive little Hornet.  We'll fix 'em!
I added a basketball for this Hornet.
Grant is our basketball star, after all!
I used a darker shade of my base color
to go over the bottom third or so of each of
my letters.  This adds a bit of interest.

Now its time to repeat the shading around
the left and lower sides of the
letters and the hornet design.  Once the
shading has dried, I apply highlights in the same
manner, but to the top and right sides
of each design element.
I added some highlights to those scary eyes,
and to the parts of the hornet I
wanted to appear more dimensional.
I used a very thin liner brush dipped in black
paint to outline the hornet and the letters.
I used a 1/4" flat brush to add some
border lines around the edges of the canvas.

My paint supply at the house was limited,
so in order to paint the top third
of the letters with a lighter shade of blue,
I mixed a tiny bit of white in with my original
blue base coat color.

I thought the border outline was a little
boring, so I added a thin white
line to the top and right sides of the
main black border line, and a little gray
to the left and lower sides.
Still didn't pop, so I used the liner brush
dipped in black again and sort of
outlined each design element
(letters, border, and some of the hornet)

I added some highlight lines
with the liner brush and white paint.

Once the paint was completely dry,
I used an emery board (limited supplies here)
and sanded a bit off the basketball
and the right sides of the letters.

I brushed two coats of sealer onto the
top and edges of the canvas.
I used Mod Podge in matte finish as
my sealer.  I let it dry overnight and it looks
pretty great!  I hope Grant likes it!

~ Peace and Personalized Canvas ~

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