My dabbling, and falling in love with mixed media, happened coincidentally. I’d been working with all different kinds of art for years; painting, drawing, quilt making, etc. All separately. One day while trying to work out some difficult emotions through painting, my friend came over to hand me a box of craft supplies that had belonged to her daughter, Maren. She didn’t know what to do with them and wanted me to keep them and use them in my art projects. It was an incredible honor to receive this treasure of her daughter.
When I laid all Maren’s keepsakes on the table, I saw that the fabrics and beads and jewelry all matched the color scheme I was working with on my painting. I started picking things up and draping them over the painting and Maren started taking over the painting in a wonderful way. At the same time, I was privy to read Maren’s song journal. I loved seeing her handwriting - it made me feel like she was still with us. I started working with ways to put her handwriting into the painting. First by photo copying on paper and embedding it right onto the canvas. Then I tried tracing. Then I took photos of her writing and learned how to print onto canvas sheets. Later learned a way to copy handwriting in a software program and either print or cut with vinyl. It was the beginning of my falling in love with personalizing projects.
I’ve dabbled in different ways to apply fabric and paper to canvas. Mod podge is my favorite for most fabric and paper, but for larger items, like jewelry, epoxy has worked wonderfully. Now I'm playing around with adding vinyl to canvas. I love just drawing and doodling right into a piece. The canvas can get a little busy, super colorful, very textured -- and that feels like more of an expression of my true self.
I continue to learn programs and methods to further this mixed media process. It is how my journal making began and continues to grow. I’ve learned that when I have a lot of projects out and about in my studio at the same time, there is a cross pollination of ideas, and new projects are born.
Contact me if you'd like me to make a mixed media piece with your photo and belongings or look at the shop page to see what is currently available.