Tag Archives: Paper

Focal Points and Mixed Media Art


Focal Points in Mixed Media ArtDid you know you can tell a story with mixed media art? Yes you can but how you place your focal points is of importance. Madeline Faiella chose to explain this concept by using 3 feet tall and 2 feet widecourt room board but on a smaller surface and to which she added a base of white paint and gesso.

The feeling of being able to re-use something is awesome. She used paper, painted with acrylic to make a face and attached it the base of the board using gesso. Then using light, graduated layers, she applied molding paste across the base surface.

At this point ensure the edges are up to standard with the background and you can choose to use lighter layers.  In the event you chose to use many layers, give your work some good time to dry. You can only achieve proper drying if you leave your work overnight between each layering.

Careful planning and having enough spontaneity are of essence. Keep the colors in mind and have a thorough check of your work after each layer.

Madeline who has written continuing columns for the art and creative community says that you can achieve anything through trying new things and being creative. She has a tone of tools for her work which she uses for her varied work.


Simple Mixed Media Tunnel Book


Handmade mixed media books – a tunnel bookKatja Blum who is a writer and translator was introduced to bookmaking by his son Sam who makes lots of books. Besides, she has branched into collage and other paper arts.She also likes to find creative solutions for ugly or broken things around the house.  Sam’s books can be anything he wants – he can cut, glue, draw, paint, glitter and write. Katja loves the tunnel book which consists of several pages with cutouts of decreasing size.

Tunnel books are fun to play with and add to. Sam likes books about animals.Making a tunnel book is simple because you design the cutouts of your pages according to the picture or story you want to create.Each cut out should be smaller than the one before it. However elaborate figures or landscapes in your cutouts can always be added later. The strips should be folded into an “M” shape. Folding is easy but only if you score the fold lines using a ruler and a bone folder. Flexible connection enables the pages to consist of many different materials from thick watercolor paper to cardboard.

Design, decorate and cut out your book pages and attach the accordion hinges. You can always add more decorations and elements later, as the pages remain pretty accessible.

Are you a last minute gift giver person?


Last-minute Gift Card WrappersLet’s be honest that sometimes we rush to buy gifts the last moment however simple they could be including a gift card which is apparently the simplest. According to Katja Blum, a gift card is fun and says “I think you deserve a treat, please pick exactly what would make you smile right now”.

If you are looking out for presentation of ideas for holiday gift cards here are some ideas that you can borrow and achieve your goal:

  • In the event you only have a day to give the gift, how about making a collage or mixed media painting and using the envelope as part of the background?Alternatively, you can also make your own simple card pocket by gluing a piece of paper, card or fabric to the piece on three sides, leaving the top open.
  • If you only have hours, felt ornaments are easy to make and can be decorated with anything.
  • If you are really pressed for time with only an hour or less, a simple origami envelope can be folded in minutes. Almost any kind of rectangular paper works for the envelope.

Katja will create something from anything and from ugly or broken things around the house, she will find creative solutions. She advises that you need not to use chunks of money to buy gifts whereas you can make them from the comfort of your home.

Did you Know you Can Achieve Creative Art in 10 minutes?


Ten minute art idea-  “Tie dyed” paperTo the delight of her husband, Katja Blum likes to find creative solutions for ugly or broken things around the house. Her latest obsession is making soft stuffies and art dolls – to the delight of her toddler. The technique of paper marbling fascinates her even though it is somewhat time- and labor-intensive. And since she loves surprises, it is possible to apply the color to the water or sizing in a controlled manner, the outcome can still be a happy surprise.

On the other hand “Tie-dyeing”, or rather fold-dyeing, paper is a technique that requires few materials and no preparation. You can do it at your worktable or at the kitchen sink while making tea.  The few materials include:

  • Paper whereby most paper qualities will work.
  • Liquid fabric or silk paints
  • Gloves
  • Bowl of water (or the sink)
  • Wooden dowel and rubber bands (for the rolled technique)
  • Paper clips to hold folded papers together for drying


This is how you do it


  • Fold the paper into various shapes. You can also crumple it up or roll it up on the dowel and fasten it with rubber bands.
  • Put on gloves, protect your work surface from paint spatters and apply random drips of fabric paint to the folded or crumpled paper and into the folds.
  • Once the papers are dry, unfold them carefully and enjoy the colors and patterns you have created.  Of course you can use your tie-dyed papers as backgrounds for mixed-media pieces or as collage material.

Making Containers from Mixed Media PapierMâché


Making Containers from Mixed Media PapierMâchéPapier-mâché (French for “chewed paper) is a sculptural technique that most people know from elementary school.  However papier-mâché was used for making coffins in Ancient Egypt, for armor, medieval church and castle interiors, boats and even aircraft fuel tanks during World War II. to make a papier-mâché bowl in your house you will need:

  • Paper, torn into strips and pieces – tissue paper, newsprint, junk mail, gift wrap, scrap paper
  • Fiber, fabric, threads and other light, “glueable” things
  • Flour or wallpaper paste
  • Masking tape for adhering bases, handles

You can make a balloon bow while using decorative paper for the inside layer. When you have almost reached the desired thickness, think about the base for your balloon bowl. You can get as creative as you like, but one easy method is a base ring. You can also use this technique to make handles and rims.

You can also make a container bowl by covering the inside of that container with plastic wrap and use it as a form. It’s safer to work on the inside of containers you don’t want to cover permanently with papier-mâché. However remember that you are working the outside first this time. When working in a bowl, you won’t need a base to make your object stand, but you can certainly add one later, as well as handles.

Once the objects are dried all the way through, lift your papier-mâché bowl out of the form and pop the balloon. Cut the containers into any shape that pleases you. Decorate the papier-mâché bowls

Making Gift Wrappers with Intricate Paper Stencils


IntricatePaperStencilsMartice Smith II who is the creative director of Martice Smith II has established herself as a freelance Illustrator and graphic designer after receiving her Bachelor of Arts Degree. Below is her tutorial on how to make a gift wrap while using Intricate Paper Stencils:

  • Put your tools together and if you have used watercolors, water-soluble pencil or any other water-based mediums spray 1-2 light coatings of varnish.  This will result to sealing and prevent bleeding or mixing of colors on your stencils.
  • There’s no need to work on large areas unless your stencils are very large so position your stencils on craft paper.  Do not clutter too much of your stencils
  • Apply spray adhesive and this should be done from outside because of the strong fumes. Each stencil should be sprayed individually with even layers of adhesive
  • Generously apply Mod Podge® directly to the stencils with a large, bristle brush or a foam brush.
  • Let them dry ad trim the excess and a 15 minutes should be good timing to allow drying.
  • Continue adding more of your intricate paper stencils if so far you love what you have already done. Once you are done cut off what you need to wrap a package or you can re-roll the kraft paper.

You are now ready to wrap your gifts and you can start the process all over again.