Van Gogh Inspired Powertex

This article is about how my favourite artist influences what I create with Powertex. Gosh, making this choice was as tricky as choosing a design from one of my fellow Powertex design team members. The main three artists I whittled it down to were Vincent Van Gogh, Lucian Freud and Frida Kahlo. 

Vincent Van Gogh style Powertex
Swirly patterns reminiscent of Van Gogh often work their way into my art

“I want to touch people with my art. I want them to say ‘he feels deeply, he feels tenderly’.”

Vincent Van Gogh

All three have very different styles, but each of these artists work, move’s me on an emotional level. To me their work has a kinaesthetic quality to it.  I almost want to dive right into the painting and feel the textures of paint they have layered on. Obviously I hold myself back from doing this as I’m not a fan of getting thrown out of art galleries.

Van Gogh quote with Powertex art
I incorporate some of Van Gogh’s quotes into my art using the Powertex stencils

“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint’, then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.”

Vincent Van Gogh

Looking back on my Powertex work

When I looked back over my Powertex work, the style of Van Gogh seems to have influenced me the most. Maybe it is because the textural aspect of Powertex works so well for creating those swirling patterns of colour, that can carry add such emotional clout to an image.

paint brush incorporated into powertex journal
I added an old paint brush as it just felt like it belonged in this piece

A while back I did a step by step on how I created a Van Gogh inspired bottle, complete with starry starry lights which you can find here.

I had fun incorporating the twisted willow into this design

“The heart of man is very much like the sea, it has its storms, it has its tides and in its depths it has its pearls too.”

Vincent Van Gogh

I have also created a journal using the same techniques.

“It is with the reading of books the same as with looking at pictures; one must, without doubt, without hesitations, with assurance, admire what is beautiful.'”

Vincent Van Gogh

I stumbled across a book of Van Gogh’s letters some years ago, and was blown away by the beauty of his words. He used words just as beautifully and just as brutally honestly as he used his paint brush.

I am a doodler and a scribbler, and never keep my journals clean and tidy. They tend to get lost in the chaos of my studio, and resurface when the time is right for me to use them. But this one is precious to me. This one I never lose.

front and back of my van gogh powertex journal
The one journal I always keep safe and sound

Who inspires you?

Here at Powertex UK we love to see photos of your creations, and to find out who you have been inspired by. Please feel free to share them over on our Facebook group.

If you would like to leave any comments here, they are also very welcome. You can see more of what I get up to over on my own Facebook page.

That’s all from me for now folks, keep on Powertexing and I will see you in December.

Cow skull and copper art

Designed by – Kore Sage

Hi, it’s Kore here. I love the new mdf frame and cow skull mould that were featured on the Hochanda tv shows in September. I had Easy Structure, Aqua and Egg Yolk acrylic inks and Copper Penny metallic ink in my kit to make my sample. The Copper Penny ink is absolutely gorgeous! Here’s how I made my Cow skull and Copper art.

Cow skull and Copper art by Kore Sage
Cow skull and copper art

If you bought these products you can follow along or get inspired to create your own art.

Materials List

How to make my Cow skull and Copper art

Prepare your frame

Slot the pieces together using Ivory Powertex as glue. Then paint the whole thing with Ivory.

Put the mdf frame together with Ivory Powertex
Prepare the frame

Create texture

Use the Easy Structure to create a rough texture over the frame. I used a plastic palette knife to scrape it down the surfaces.

TOP TIP: An old credit card works well but don’t smooth out the paste too much.

Easy Structure texture on the frame
Apply Easy Structure

Prepare your pieces

Make some clay with Ivory Powertex and Stone Art to use in the mould and make your skull and flowers. Coat pieces of paperdecoration with Ivory and dry on a craft mat or plastic bag.

TOP TIP: I turned the horns on my skull forwards while the clay was wet.

Prepare clay pieces and paperdecoration with Ivory Powertex
Prepare clay piece and paperdecoration

Spray with inks

Generously spray the inks onto the frame. I sprayed the wet inks into each other which is why my frame looks more green and blue.

Spray acrylic inks onto the texture
Spray on acrylic inks

Add more texture

Next Paperdecoration adds more texture. I took the small pieces and glued these into place with Ivory Powertex. Then gave another spritz with the inks. Leave to dry.

Add pieces of paperdecoration
Add paperdecoration

Copper ink

Paint your dry paperdecoration and flowers with Copper Penny acrylic ink. I used Aqua ink to colour the cow skull piece but you could use the copper ink for that too.

TOP TIP: Make sure both sides are coated.

Paint with Copper Penny acrylic ink
Paint with Copper Penny metallic ink

Layer up

Add your layers when the inks are dry. Glue your pieces into place with Ivory Powertex.

TOP TIP: If your pieces aren’t connecting very well, use pieces of tissue in Powertex to fill the gaps.

Layer up paperdecoration and clay pieces, cow skull and copper pieces.
Layer up

Finishing touches

When your pieces are glued into place with Powertex you can add any details with the Copper Ink. I painted the horns on the skull and added some Copper splashes on the frame with a paintbrush. I later added Copper ink on the edge of the frame too.

Cow skull and copper art in Powertex by Kore Sage
Cow skull and copper art by Kore Sage
Close up of cow skull and copper paperdecoration

Thank you for taking a look at my Powertex Cow skull and copper art. Donna has also used this mould for her art but with very different results.

Did you order these products? We’d love to see what you make, so join us in the Powertex Studio group on Facebook. You can also follow me on Facebook at Kore Sage Art or on my website koresageart.com.

I hope you can make some time to let your art out!

Kore x

Cow skull and flowers wall hanging

Designer:  Jill Cullum

When I received the mould for the Cow Skull and Flowers I was immediately drawn to a Native American reservation.  Speaking to a friend she told me it reminded her of the Navajo tribe.  When I searched this I found the colours used in their art and pottery were beautifully vibrant.  What better than to have a lovely wall hanging with a nod to the Navajo art culture.

Materials Used

Preparation

Use Powertex Stone Art clay to make a cow skull and flowers from the mould
Stone Art clay skull and flowers

Using Stone Art Clay and the Cow Skull and Flowers Mould, make a cow and several flowers.  Put to one side to dry.

Dreamcatcher Ring

Dreamcatcher ring
Dreamcatcher ring with paperdecoration

Add texture to 3 of the rings – 2 using Paper Decoration, Light Pink and one with string.  Leave to dry.

Using 2 of the solid circles create a background texture of your choice, with Ivory Fabric Hardener.

MDF Frame and Panel

Mdf frame with paperdecoration
Add textures to the mdf frame

Use Stone Art Clay and Texture Paste to add interest background.  For the front use Paper Decoration Natural with Ivory Fabric Hardener.

Hanger – Make a Branch

Make a hanger
Create the hanger

Use twisted cardboard tubing and tinfoil, adding texture with more Paperdecoration. At the same time secure string in place to use later.

Feathers and Colouring

Acrylic inks to decorate the mdf feathers
Colour with acrylic inks

Using Acrylic Ink, add colour to the feathers and the pre-prepared rings.

Use Brown Bister spray
Spray with Bister

Use Brown Bister to add colour to the Cow Skull and the flowers. Also do this to the centre panel of the MDF frame and branch.

Colour the textures with acrylic inks

Use the Acrylic inks to add colour to the outer section of the MDF frame.

Transparent Powertex to fix the skull and flowers to the wall art
Transparent Powertex to fix the skull and flowers

Using the solid ring from the dreamcatcher kit, fix the skull and flowers using Transparent Powertex.

Putting it all together

Powertex wall art with cow skull and flowers
Powertex wall art with cow skull and flowers

Attach the Skull circle to the centre panel on the mdf frame. Attach more string to the circles and the MDF panel (I used Transparent Fabric Hardener). Finally fix the feathers in place to create your beautiful Navajo Indian Wall hanging.

I really hope you enjoyed this article and it has inspired you to use the MDF, Cow Skull and Flower mould in a different way.

Show us your ‘makes’ here in the The Powertex Studio. We love to see what Powertex Addicts create. If you need more inspiration take a look at this beautiful wall art with a Venetian feel, by Gill Goldsmith.

Get making, be creative, but most of all have fun 🙂 Bye for now, Jill x

A Powertex Spooktacular

Secret Art Box October 2019

Designed by – Gill Goldsmith

This month’s Secret Art Box theme was Halloween inspired and was packed full of wonderful spooky contents. Including an MDF panel, MDF elements with skulls, tombstones and spiders webs, a spooky stencil, rice paper, large balls, a texture pack, charms, skeleton leaves, plaster skull heads, pigments and varnish. A Powertex spooktacular!

Powertex spooktacular halloween art by Gill Goldsmith
Powertex spooktacular by Gill Goldsmith

Materials list

Powertex UK Secret Art Box for October 2019

Any Halloween embellishments

Stone Art Clay

Powertex UK Secret Art Box subscription box October 2019
Powertex UK Subscription Box October 2019

How to create your spooktacular wall art

Step 1

I decided I would construct my panel “inside out”. Instead of a flat surface, I created an inset frame. Glue with the Black Powertex Universal Medium included in this month’s box.

Step 2

With Powertex Easy Structure, which is a smooth paste, stencil the design around the outside of the panel, repeating on each corner.

Stencil skull design on the corners
Stencil the skull design

Step 3

Next I decided on which mdf pieces I wanted to use on this project. There are lots, so I have plenty left for more spooky projects. I painted the panel and the elements in the black Powertex.

Choose elements
Choosing elements to include
Paint all the mdf with Black Powertex Universal Medium
Paint everything with black Powertex Universal Medium

Step 4

Coat the texture fabric and draped it across the corners of the panel, allowing it to look like spiders webs. Make a pumpkin using an MDF shape and add Stone Art clay to give it the curved shape.

Everything was coated in the black Powertex and allowed to dry thoroughly.

TOP TIP: I’ve added extra MDF elements I had in my stash.

Paint all the elements in black Powertex
Layer, coat and glue with black Powertex

Step 5

Once dry, I dry brushed the entire piece with ivory Powertex which gives definition to all the texture and starts to make everything look like its covered in cobwebs and aged.

Dry brush the pieces with Ivory Powertex
Dry-brush with Ivory Powertex

Step 6

Add colour with Plum Pudding acrylic paint in some areas. Use the Ultramarine blue pigment and the Interference lilac pigment to emphasise these.

TOP TIP: Add a touch of orange marmalade acrylic paint on the pumpkin!

Add colour with paint and pigments
Add colour

Finishing touches

Dry brushing everything gives a pop of colour. Mix powder pigments with Easy Varnish. Load your brush with colour and then wipe most of it off on a piece of kitchen roll before applying in broad flat strokes. This really does give the best effect and the colour can be built up to achieve the best results.

Powertex Spooktacular Halloween wall art by Gill Goldsmith
Powertex Spooktacular by Gill Goldsmith

Here is the finished piece, it’s a very different style for me, but I loved working with the spooky elements, have lots left to create more projects. Some of these materials are also available separately at Powertex UK.

Keep a look out for another subscription box project coming soon and don’t forget to share what you make on the Secret Art Box Subscribers or Powertex Studio Facebook groups.

I love to see what everyone creates. If you want more inspiration please have a look at my Facebook page The Powertex Port and check out my other Secret Art Box makes on the blog.

Until next month….Happy Powertexing xxx Gill

Powertex Dreamcatcher

Designed by Donna Mcghie

Powertex dreamcatcher by Donna Mcghie
Step by step guide to creating a Powertex Dream Catcher

The story behind my Powertex dreamcatcher. I will always have a bit of a soft spot for dream catchers.  When my daughter was young she suffered awfully from night terrors. 

We tried many techniques to get her to have a peaceful night, and spoke to many professionals as well.  One of the things we tried,  hoping that it would help her even if just a through a placebo effect was a dream catcher. 

I’d be lying if I said she slept perfectly once we hung up her dream catcher. The thought of it catching those bad dreams and holding them at bay definitely had a calming effect on her before she closed her eyes at bedtime to go to sleep.

Thankfully those days are long behind us now, and my daughter is now a young woman.  But she has seen the dream catcher shown here and I know this is something she would still hang up in her bedroom or living room.

For this dream catcher I used the gorgeous ink sprays now available from Powertex UK.  I just love how vibrant and easy to use these are, and how they automatically blend into each other to create almost an air brushed effect. 

Materials List

How to make my Powertex dreamcatcher

Prepare the frame

Prepare the frame
This mdf frame is so easy to use


Paint the Powertex mdf frame and panel with Ivory Fabric Hardener and set aside to dry.

Mix up Stone Art clay

Mix up Stone Art Clay
I used the mould for one cow’s head, but made lots of the flowers to add onto my final design

Mix up  Stone Art with Ivory Fabric Hardener to form a clay. I  pressed this into the Cow Skull and Flowers mould.

Spray with acrylic inks

Spray with acrylic inks
I put the small raised square to one side for now and only sprayed the larger piece

I wanted to create a surreal dreamy effect, so popped out the shapes from the MDF Dream Catchers and used them as stencils, spraying over with my ink sprays randomly.

Add Easy Structure texture

Add easy structure feathers
The easy structure adds texture to the design

Put Easy Structure onto a pallet knife and smear it through a leaf stencil.  I also sponged silver acrylic onto the leaves.

Use Bister spray for depth

Use Bister sprays for depth
Bister gives added depth to the design.

I added more texture by soaking my natural paperdecoration in transparent hardener and placing around the edges. I also sprayed the edges with Mahogany Bister Spray.

Lay out Paperdecoration

Using Paperdecoration
I sprayed the cow’s head with acrylics to keep in with my colour scheme

Put together the inner section and add paperdecoration (soaked in transparent hardener) and the cow’s head. I did not glue it in just yet.

Layering paperdecoration
Once I was happy with this section, I secured it onto the larger piece.

I soaked my light pink paperdecoration in transparent fabric hardener and add this to my design also.

Mdf feathers

mdf feathers
Once the easy structure was dry I painted my feathers with Raspberry Sorbet Acrylic and also dry brushed them.

My next step was to add texture to my mdf feathers by using the Easy Structure and my feather stencil. I put them to one side to dry.

Paint and add clay flowers

Stone Art clay flowers
I used lots of these little flowers

Painted all the small flowers with Acrylic Paint and once dry, dry brush with White Powercolor.

Add crochet fabric

Create the dreamcatcher
If you are clever enough crochet your own middle, or do what I do and scour the charity shops

I soaked some crochet in the Ivory Hardener and secured it into the mdf circles. Once dry, I sprayed with my inks and added flowers

Glue the pieces together

Glue the dreamcatcher pieces together with Powertex
My mdf feathers are glued to the dream catcher to help secure the whole piece together

Glue the dream catcher into place and add feathers to the design.

Dry brushing

Powertex dream catcher with feathers by Donna Mcghie
The finished Dream Catcher

Finally I dry brushed my whole piece using the interference pigments and the white Powercolor.

Finishing Touches

The interference colours were gorgeous to use with this project, as I honestly do think they have a dreamy quality to them.  I also used a sponge to add just a touch of the aqua ink to the tips of the feathers. I felt they needed something extra to help them blend in. 

TOP TIP: I was slightly concerned about the dream catcher adhering to the square, but found by putting glue on both the top of the dream catcher, and also the larger feathers it secured on nicely.

That’s all from me for this month. If you’ve enjoyed this Powertex dreamcatcher, I would be really grateful if you popped over to check out my Facebook page as well. You can also see my last design team project that’s great for Halloween.

Until next time, keep powertexing 🙂

Fabulous Frames

By Annette Smyth

Hello there,

Did you catch Tracey Evans on Hochanda on 27th September? if not click here to go to the Hochanda site and watch the shows on rewind at 11am and 3pm. If you did then you will have seen the amazing frames and panels now available from Powertex UK.

The frames are constructed from MDF and provide a beautifully stable base to apply all the lovely Powertex textures onto.

They come in 2 options.

I fell in love with these beauties when I saw them and have been creating like crazy with them. Here are a few of my makes.

Fabulous frames

Mixed Media

I created these pieces using the MDF frame and panel, they are coated in a base of Ivory Powertex and Easy Structure. Texture was added with stencils, mark making, MDF lettering, Powercotton, Paperdecoration and 3D Sand and Balls.

Secret Art Loft acrylic inks were then sprayed on to give the base colours and enhanced with the Secret Art Loft acrylic paints as the colours match perfectly. A little bit of bling was added with gems and silver leaf.

Africa themed mdf frame by Annette Smyth

It’s all about Africa

This piece was also created on the MDF Frame and Panel. This time I used Ivory Powertex along with Easy 3D Flex and 3D Sand to create the base texture.

The mdf additions – trees and letters, were all coated with Powertex Bronze and then stencilled on using Easy Structure to give texture.

The plaster torso (African Semi Prince) was also coated in Powertex Bronze.

A rice paper image was added to the central area using Easy Coat Mat before the lettering was added on top

The whole piece was then drybrushed with Powercolour pigments using Easy Varnish and the same pigments mixed with Powerwax were used to give the depth of colour on the frame area.

Cow skull Powertex art by Annette Smyth

Cow Skull Dreaming

For this piece I used the same frame but combined it with the Dreamcatcher MDF set which I stencilled onto using Easy structure. I used StoneArt clay in the new Cow Skull mould to create the focal point and added lots of extra flowers.

The base was Ivory Powertex and the additional texture is from cardboard, Powercotton, dishcloth, Paperdecoration and 3D Sand and Balls.

Again I used the Secret Art Loft acrylic inks and paints for colouring.

Powertex art by Annette Smyth

Heading East

For the Eastern themed pieces I chose to use the MDF Inset Frame and Panel. The plaster Buddha sits beautifully inside the opening with lots of room around the edges to add texture and colour and the lovely MDF symbols.

The top panel uses Black Powertex, Easy Structure, Hessian and 3D Sand and Balls. Once dry I used Easy Varnish and Rich Gold pigment to add the highlights.

The lower piece used Ivory Powertex, stencilling and texture with Easy Structure. The acrylic inks and paints provide the intense colour and Easy Varnish with Rich Gold pigment was used for the highlights.

Keep an eye out on this Powertex Magazine for some fantastic step by step articles from my design team colleagues. They will show you other amazing projects you can create using these frames.

We love to see what you create so please post your makes on our Facebook group, The Powertex Studio. Inspire others to have a go.

See more of my work or join me for a workshop at my home studio in Leamington Spa. Please take a look at my website www.annettesmyth.co.uk or contact me via my Facebook page.

Until next time Happy Creative Adventures.

Axx

Stone Art Temple

Designed by – Abigail Lagden

Powertex Stone Art Temple by Abigail Lagden
Powertex Stone Art Temple by Abigail Lagden

When I received the Buddha themed goodies from the Hochanda shows, my mind was immediately drawn to the temple of Ta Prohm in Cambodia where trees grow through the ruins. Although I have never been lucky enough to visit, it is a place that has always intrigued me and sparked my imagination. So it is from there that I drew my inspiration this month for my Stone Art Temple.

Materials

How to Create a Stone Art Temple

Step 1

First, I used Easy Structure paste through a stencil from my stash. Create some swirly patterns on the front and sides of the box frame and on the base piece where the recess would be.

Powertex Easy Structure through a swirl stencil
Step 1

Step 2

I then used ivory Powertex to attach some of the MDF shapes around the edge of the base piece and to construct the middle square. You can also see that I drew around the outer square with pencil to provide a guide when applying the stone art.

Mdf frame and pieces, build the temple
Step 2

Step 3

Stone effects were created by coating the surfaces with a layer of ivory Powertex and firmly pressing the stone art onto it, before gently rubbing off the excess. I applied the stone art lightly over the stenciled pieces and more thickly on the base. I then used ivory Powertex to fix all of the pieces together.

Apply Stone Art to the Powertex
Step 3

Step 4

I painted the plaster Buddha statue with black Powertex, let it dry and then painted it using rich gold Colortricx powder mixed with Easy Varnish. I secured the statue into the recess using ivory Powertex and surrounded it with large, medium and small 3D balls mixed with ivory Powertex.

Paint the plaster Buddha with Black Powertex and Gold Colortricx
Step 4

Step 5

The whole piece was sprayed with black and green Bister sprays.

Spray with Bister sprays in Black and Green
Step 5

Step 6

I mixed ivory and black Powertex together with some green Powercolor pigment to create a grey/green medium. I used this to coat some pieces of natural paper decoration and gently stretched them to create stringy tree roots across the box.

Paperdecoration
Step 6

The final step was to dry brush the whole piece using ivory Powertex to really enhance all the ‘stone’ textures. I also added a few blush tones using red and white Powercolor pigments mixed with Easy Varnish.

Powertex stone art temple close up
Finishing touches
Powertex temple by Abigail Lagden

If you treated yourself to any of the new products showcased on Hochanda in September, we’d love to see what you created. Please share your pictures in The Powertex Studio facebook group.

If you’d like to see more of what I am up to you can follow my Curiously Contrary Facebook page. If you’d like to find out about workshops that I am running please visit my website www.curiously-contrary.co.uk

You can also see another project of mine, the mixed media hanging heart tutorial here on the magazine.

Until next time, Abs xx

Rusty letter art

The Secret Art Box – August 2019

Designer – Kore Sage

The August Secret Art Box included a personalised initial in mdf, a stencil, papers, a quote stamp and textured fabrics. Also Lead Powertex fabric hardener and colour pigments were in Aqua ink and Blue Bister granules. There was so much in the box to use but I knew straight away that I wanted to use Rusty Powder with the mdf, ink and Bister to create rusty letter art.

Powertex UK secret art box august 2019
Powertex UK Secret Art Box August

Materials list

  • Tag
  • Lead Powertex Fabric Hardener
  • Printed papers
  • Pieces of fabrics
  • Mdf letter
  • Aqua ink spray
  • Bister granules
  • Powercotton

Optional and other supplies

Powertex Rusty Letter wall art
Rusty Letter Art by Kore Sage

1. Make a start

Step 1
Step 1

Laying down the first textures with printed papers and Lead Powertex Fabric Hardener to cover the canvas.

2. Create background textures

Step 2 Easy Structure
Step 2

Use Easy Structure with a plastic palette knife through the stencil. Clean your stencil straight away.

3. Build fabric layers

Step 3 adding fabric with Powertex
Step 3

I added fabric textures to build up a background for the mdf letter. Lead Powertex hardens and adheres the fabric. Use a hairdryer to dry.

4. Add mdf letters and shapes

Step 4 Adding MDF with White Powertex
Step 4

To create depth I used White Powertex to paint and glue the mdf letter and shapes. I painted it lightly over most of the background. Dry with a hairdryer.

TIP: Ivory Powertex Fabric Hardener will also work well if you don’t have White.

5. Spray Aqua ink

Step 5 Spray on Aqua Acrylic ink
Step 5

Spray the Aqua ink generously over the textures, let it pool, drip and run off to the side.

6. Add Rusty Powder

Mix up 1 tbsp Transparent Powertex with a little white vinegar and 1/2 – 1 tbsp Rusty Powder. Pour onto the letter, background and fabrics. (It will look grey and the rust will take a few hours to form.)

TIP: For a thicker rust mixture add 3D Sand or Small balls

7. Using Bister granules

Add spots of Transparent Powertex and sprinkle Bister granules onto wet areas. Spray with water and vinegar spray so the colour runs.

TIP: Using white vinegar in the water spray alters the colour of the Bister and encourages the rust.

Step 6 Sprinkle on Blue Bister granules
Step 6 and 7
Step 7 Rusty Powder
Step 6 and 7 rusted

Powercotton vines

Step 8 Powercotton
Step 8

I used Powercotton strands coated with White Powertex to look like vines around the letter.

Brush up highlights

Step 9 White Powertex Highlights
Step 9

White Powertex is dry brushed on highlights over the whole canvas using a flat brush.

Finishing touches

I repeated the Rusty Powder and Bister granules until I was happy with the contrast. Highlighting with White or Ivory Powertex at the end just lifts the letters away from the background. You can layer up as much as you like.

Powertex rusty letter art by Kore Sage
Powertex Rusty Letter Art by Kore Sage

There’s so much left in the Secret Art Box I’ll be making more with these supplies. Tutor Gill has also used this month’s subscription box here.

Keep an eye on The Powertex Studio and my Facebook Page where I’ll be posting my Powertex art. Join us at Powertex Addicts United where you can share your makes.

You can find all the details on the Powertex UK website for your own Powertex subscription box, along with many of these supplies.

Until next time, make some time to let your art out,

Kore x

Stormy Sea Tag with Powertex

Designed by – Donna Mcghie

Powertex stormy sea tag scene using mdf tags by Donna Mcghie
Seascape tag

Tags are really popular in the crafting world at the moment. For my stormy sea tag, I’m using the A5 tag from Powertex UK. They are great quality to work with, whatever your style of crafting.

Don’t you just love the fact that we all have our own individual style?  Obviously style evolves as we experiment and learn new techniques.  My own style I would describe as rather haphazard.  I’ve never been one for over thinking a project. 

Once many years ago an art tutor declared my work to be very ‘organic’. Initially I wasn’t quite sure how to take this, but I think I know what she was getting at. As an artist I like to allow my paint, Powertex, or whatever medium I’m using to have a life of it’s own.  You could say I’m a ‘go with the flow’ kind of a girl.

Go With The Flow

What do I mean by ‘go with the flow?’ Well, according to the artist Jenny Holzer “Going with the flow is soothing but risky.” I find it soothing to allow Powertex to take on a life of it’s own. I also love the sense of risk, the excitement of never quite knowing what I will end up with.

That could be why I love stormy seascapes. How wonderful that everyone’s storm will end up slightly different.

Materials list:

1: Prepare with White Powertex

Prepare mdf with white powertex
A5 tag and lighthouse mdf

Sponge Powertex White over MDF pieces and set aside to dry.

2: Blue Bister

Powertex mdf tab with blue bister and white fabric hardener for sky
Powertex Blue Bister makes a perfect blustery sky

Spray Powertex Ready Mixed Blue Bister on the top third of the tag. Use a damp sponge wipe away spaces for the clouds.

3: Adding fabric strips

Powertex mdf lighthouse template
I set this aside to dry for a while

Soak denim strips in transparent hardener to for sections of the lighthouse and paint the top.  A blast of ready mixed black bister gives a rugged effect.

4: Pouring Powertex

powertex mdf tag with bisters and fabric hardeners for stormy waves
This was my favourite part, where I got to ‘go with the flow’

Fun Time! Pour blue fabric hardener with smidgeon of white for the wave. Whilst still wet spray with green bister and blast with dryer for movement and crackles.

5: Place the lighthouse

powertex stormy seascape tag with lighthouse
It’s starting to come together

Place the lighthouse into position. Almost there now, just a couple of final touches and your picture will be complete.

6: Adding texture

powertex texture on mdf tag
Time for some texture

Steel grey pigment with some easy structure paste create a rock for the lighthouse to stand on, and 3D Sand with Yellow Ochre Powertex form a shoreline. If you wish to add a few more wild white touches with a pallet knife, go for it.

Finished Piece

Although this is only A5 in size, I think it packs a punch.  As I stated above, this was very much a ‘go with the flow’ project. 

Of course does help to have a rough idea of composition to keep the image interesting. Being a fan of the so called rule of thirds so, I placed my focal point (the lighthouse) to the left of the scene.

I also roughly directed the white foam on the wave to guide the eye up towards my focal point.

Powertex tag by Donna Mcghie
Stormy sea tag
The finished stormy sea tag

Please do post photos of your own stormy sea tags over on the Powertex Facebook Page, we love seeing what you create. Also feel free to leave any comments on here.

You can get tips on using Stone Art clay on a canvas seascape in last month’s blog.

I’m the Powertex tutor for Southampton, so if you are interested in a workshop please pop over to my website where details can be found on the blog section. More info on Jenny Holzer can be found here.

That’s all from me for now folks. Keep on going with the flow and see you next month.

A kelp forest – under the sea

Kelp Forest by Fiona Potter

It was a beautiful, clear blue sky morning in the glorious heat of Summer 2018 we arrived at Porthgwarra Beach in far west Cornwall just as the tide was receding.  It’s such a beautiful cove and we kept spotting something in the water around the rocks and went to investigate.  It was a whole area of kelp – a Kelp Forest! Wandering through the pools left by the tide there were beautiful shells, stones and shiny pebbles.  This was my inspiration for this Under the Sea piece.

Kelp Forest by Fiona Potter
Under the sea: Kelp Forest

Supplies

How to make a Powertex kelp forest

Step 1: The ingredients
Step 2 - Setting in the wires

Step 1: Use either Stone Art or other air dry clay to push into moulds, leave to dry. Cut 9 or 10 lengths of wire and randomly drill holes into the mdf base.

Tip: I had a tennis ball size piece of Stone Art clay left over from a previous project that I kept. Spray water lightly over a piece of clingfilm which I wrapped tightly around the clay. I sealed it in a reusable plastic bag.

Step 2: Push wires into holes, secure with masking tape then rip lengths of masking tape sticking it the full length of both sides of the wire to create lengths of kelp.

The base

Step 3: Building the composition

Decorate the base

Step 3: Build a thick random layer of Easy Structure on the base, push shells, moulded sea shapes etc into the easy structure. Spray with bisters, set aside to dry.

Tip: If you use a large central shell like I did, it is worth masking off with some cling film or paper before you spray with bister

Step 4: Washing back and adding a top layer

The kelp

Step 4: Wash back the bister from shells and shapes. Use red ochre to colour some of the coral like shapes. Add a generous layer of transparent Powertex fabric harder on the base and drop in mixed art stones.

Step5: Adding the Kelp

Metallic colours

Step 6: Bringing out the colour

Step 5: Rip up lengths of pale green tissue paper and paste onto the kelp using transparent Powertex. Leave to dry. Transparent Powertex helps to keep the transparency.

Tips: Paint the transparent Powertex onto the masking tape and press the tissue onto it with a Powertex soaked brush.

Step 6: Using the blues and greens metallic pigments bring out the highlights of the bottom of the sea.  Brush Mojito Lime and Golden Olive, Limoncello Gold randomly on the kelp. If you leave lighter patches the sun will shine through enhancing the kelp.

Leave it in a place where you get the sun. Watch it at various times of the day to see where the sun lands and where you might want to add further metallics and maybe a pearl or crystal.

I hope this easy but interesting focal piece inspires you to create your own under the sea project. You might also like this lovely fish sculpture project by Annette.

Don’t forget to share your makes in The Powertex Studio and if you can give me a shout out that would be awesome.

That’s me for now, check back in June when I’m upcycling one of my early Angels that has been keeping watch in my garden for the last couple of years.

Bye for now

Fi

Powertex Kelp Forest by Fiona Potter
Powertex Kelp Forest by Fiona Potter