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.

Crafting with Children

My inspiration for this article about crafting with children, came from looking for wall art for our new studio. I kept coming across a saying by Pablo Picasso – Every Child is an Artist. With summer holidays approaching, what better way to keep children occupied, than letting them loose with some art.

This also got me thinking that children are so free with their creations, but as adults we are so self critical and don’t like to make mistakes. This limits us in our art.

“Every Child is an Artist” – Pablo Picasso

Over the summer get your children to create, and at the same time go back to being a child yourself. A bottle of Powertex Fabric Hardener goes a long way and is safe for children.

Powertex journal by Jill Cullum
Small journal using shades of pink dry-brushing

Materials list

Ideas for children’s Powertex crafts

On your days out, collect mementos. A trip to the woods, park or beach are great places to start. Twigs, pine cones and shells are easy to find. Use them to decorate a small journal cover. Old costume jewellery doesn’t need to be thrown out and we all have a bag of jumble that can be used.

Teach children about textures, let them feel pieces of bark, different shells or broken crockery. Buy a colour wheel and play around with mixing your own colours. The Powercolor pigments can be used with Easy Varnish, but also as a watercolour by just adding water.

Crafting for children with Powertex. Blue journal cover by Jill Cullum
All about the blues

These jigsaw necklaces are so easy to make and what is not to love about them? They can also be made into fridge magnets, a decorated journal cover (which can then be used to record your summer adventures), a small canvas or a door plaque.

Crafting ideas for children. Powertex jigsaw necklace by Jill Cullum
Jigsaw necklace

Crafting with children

Art doesn’t need to be expensive but being creative does need to be fun. No rules, no criticism, and no such thing as making mistakes – happy accidents are often the best pieces we create.

So look forward to the summer holidays and I can’t wait to see what everybody creates. Please share your art work over on the Powertex Studio.

If you need any further inspiration check out all the lovely ideas and step-by-step guides here on the Powertex UK Mixed Media Magazine. Annette also has a family Powertex project tutorial, with an underwater theme. Take a look over at Purple Meadow Arts & Crafts Facebook page for details of our Junior Art Club.

Have a great crafty summer with your little ones, and release your own inner child.

Jill x

Powertex dreams

Designer – Jinny Holt

Powertex dreams. Hello again fellow Powertex creatives, for this months article my theme was ” dreamers and stars” well I have a dream…

If you have a dream, just go for it

I have been creative for what feels like forever and I have always wanted to give up my day job and be an artist full time. So a few years ago I set myself a five year plan and as of now I am less than two years away from reaching my end goal. In fact it is one year and 11 months, not that I am counting! I am now in the process of building up local contacts and have started doing workshops once a month. I’m teaching myself better photography skills, learning how to be more technical savvy (not my strong point) and be confident in myself.

So as I do love to create I decided to make myself a journal, to document my thoughts, feelings and design ideas.

If you have not yet got any Powertex in your life, then head on over HERE to see all the goodies that are on offer.

My design for my journal

How it ended up

So, I say to you..

If you have a dream or strong desire to go and do something, just go and do it. If it takes you months or even years like myself, make plans for what you want to do. Life really is to short and you may end up saying, I wish I had done that or this. I am well on my way to achieving what I want to do and while I am doing that I am always honing in, on the best that I can be.

Powertex dreams

So I hope myself and the rest of the design team here are always inspiring you to reach for your dreams. If you would like more Powertex inspiration, you can find loads of eye candy on…

PINTEREST

THE POWERTEX STUDIO

POWERTEX ADDICTS

And you can find me at MUMS SHED or look at my last blog where I created an ocean sculpture.

I look forward to seeing you creations. It would be lovely if you could leave a comment and maybe even share but most of all be inspired and have fun creating.

~LIVE~LOVE~LAUGH~CREATE~

Jinny

Certified Powertex Workshop

What’s in a Powertex Workshop?

Have you thought about going to a Powertex workshop but haven’t yet, because you’re not sure what to expect? Well come with me and let me give you an insight in what’s in a Powertex workshop.

Powertex workshop

3d Flex Texture Powertex Workshop Samples

I was invited to a Powertex workshop earlier this month by Jill Cullum, of Purple Meadow Arts & Crafts. She is the Certified Powertex Tutor for the area where I live. Jill has been on all her training, so this means that she is qualified to teach and use all the Powertex products in her Powertex workshop.

Jill explaining the samples and what she did.

Where to begin in a Powertex Workshop

Everyone getting stuck in covering their canvas’s. Janet, top left wanted to do the technique but on journal covers, so Jill brought along a journal for her to work on instead. So if you know what you would like to do, contact your tutor before hand. They are very flexible and happy to oblige where possible.

Jill demo’d the next couple of steps and then went round checking everyone was okay and understood what they were doing.

Close up of Janet’s journal covers.

Whilst the canvas’s were in the drying box Jill demonstrated how to mix up the 3d flex. She showed what the right consistency with the 3d flex was to aim for. 

Then showed how to apply the paste onto the canvas.

Then it was their turn, with guidance from Jill.

Getting ready for the next stage

Whilst the makes were back in the drying box, we all sat down and had a natter with a cuppa and some chockie biscuits. I took this opportunity to ask them what they thought of the workshop so far.

One said that it was so different to what they normally do and it was good to come without any expectations.

Another said that they have learnt so many new techniques already and we haven’t finished yet.

Another said that is was nice to do something different.

After the coffee break, all the pieces came out of the drier. Look at those amazing cracks on Anita’s canvas.

Now the fun begins, adding the colour. The hardest part seemed to be choosing which colours to use from this huge selection. Everyone was encouraged to move out of their comfort zone.

Jill chose purple and green, these aren’t her normal ‘go to’ colours.

Jill demoing on her canvas, how to use the wax with the pigments and acrylics and how to built up the layers and blend the colours.

Everyone well under way with their colours.

Really coming along now.

Fabulous blending.

Anita was building up layers to replicate the colours she had in a photo on her phone.

Finishing touches

Once everyone was happy with their canvas’s, the last thing to do was to touch up the sides to make them black again. The black just seems to make the colours pop.

And here are the proud owners with their finished pieces.

This Powertex workshop took around two and a half hours from start to finish. Just look what you could do with the right guidance. All these ladies really enjoyed themselves today.

How many of you have a bottle of Powertex sat on your craft desk but haven’t opened it yet. A workshop is a great way to get started. 

Find your local tutor

There are over 100 Certified Tutors dotted all around the UK. To find the one nearest to you, click on this link which will take you to the Powertex Tutors directory. Login and find your nearest tutor who will be happy to help you with a workshop. They cater for everyone, groups, one on one, two on one, a group of friends or join a scheduled workshop and meet like minded people, the possibilities are endless.

I hope this has given you an insight into how a workshop runs. I hope that it’s nowhere near as scary as what you thought it might be, just go along. You will be made to feel very welcome and you’ll love it so much, you’ll want to go back. Most of the tutors have their own FaceBook pages and list their planned workshops under events. So if you see something you fancy, get it touch. Nothing is out of reach with the right guidance.

Would you like to become a Powertex tutor? Be inspired by an article from Jan a Powertex UK certified tutor and find out how here.

Secret Art Box Love

True Love in a Secret Art Box- Shell North

February is the month of love so what better theme than ‘True Love’ could you have for this months Secret art box? So I decided to mix it up, take on a challenge and embrace my fears. So I am about to share with you some Secret Art Box Love.

In this article I show my first EVER video demo. But I have to admit I took on a more monumental task than anticipated. This is because it took far longer than expected (doesn’t it always when you learn something new). I was stalled by illness and it’s safe to say I came across more than a few technical challenges. This included loosing files so please bear with me!

When I say monumental task, there are 5 demo videos plus the box opening for you too get your teeth into. But you don’t have to watch all the videos at once. Perhaps come back again and view each video another time. Because this is a article on an online magazine you can view at anytime to suit you.

To start off I’ve decided to share opening my box. This is to show everyone a version of what theses delicious box full of goodies can contain.

The video didn’t turn the right way, so I’m off to a great start :D….However I have several video demos. And if you to bear with my first ever videos I’m sure you’ll still pick up lots of tips or cringe with me 🙂

True Love is free

My first Ever demo is called ‘True love is free’. It was my first inspiration upon opening all of the art box contents. I incorporated it with something I found in a charity shop. Unfortunately my memory card became faulty half way through filming. Because of this the parts where I made the leaves , roses, and where I rustied up the cage, cupid and the key are missing.

Heres a collage of the finished piece

Shell North, The Crafty Little Corner, True Love is Free, Secret Art box love.
True Love is Free

Love Notes

My second make with February’s Secret art box goodies was a journal. I named this piece “love notes’. So if journals are your thing this video demo could be right up your street.

Please excuse the fact that the begining of the video was lost due to a corrupt memory card so this is halfway through.

I used a variation of textured wall paper and stenciled images on the MDF hearts using Easy Structure. Next all items were coated and attached using Ivory Powertex fabric hardener. After drying with a hair dryer I then painted the whole journal in Secret art loft Raspberry acrylic Ink.

Here is the finished journal.

Shell North, The Crafty Little Corner, Love Notes, Secret Art Box Love
Love Notes.

Love Actually

Next on my agenda was the Pendant. I called this the ‘Love actually pendant’. Because after editing the video it became apparent that I use the word actually an awful lot (cringe!!!)

…and here is the finished piece

Shell North, The Crafty Little Corner, Love Actually, Secret Art Box Love
Love Actually.

Bee Mine

So I’ve been a busy bee as you can see, oh dear, I now have bees on my mind. My next creation was inspired by the other half heart and the sunflower mould that came in the box.

Once the heart was covered in sunflowers I wanted to incorporate bees for some reason?! I named this one unsuprisingly ‘Bee mine’. This took me further out of my comfort zone, can you guess why? But it may be your thing? Watch and find out!

Here’s my Bee-utiful finished ‘Bee mine’ canvas

Shell North, The Crafty Little Corner, Bee Mine,
Bee Mine

Reflections of love

To finish off the month of love, I came to be inspired for this creation by my partner. We were discussing how busy\stressed I’ve been when I should of been resting. How maybe I need to ‘reflect’ on my needs by not taking on too much. Or taking what could have been a small task and making it a monumental one….now distracted from the said conversation by one word…..Reflect…….yes….my mind pinged with my last creation. Watch now to find out.

Here’s the finished treasure.

Shell North, The Crafty Little Corner, reflections of love, secret art box love
Reflections of Love

Well thats it from me, what a journey this article has been. Despite my reservations I’m glad I faced my fear of videoing and working out of my comfort zone. I hope I’ve inspired you to create something unique. To do something out of your comfort zone with crafting or perhaps inspired you further to order next month’s Secret art box.

If you have any questions from products to techniques. Or you would like to make something similar to the projects in this article. Please don’t hesitate to send me a message at The Crafty Little Corner.

That all from me, List of items with links used right at the end.

Don’t forget to leave a comment.

Peace, love and video blog shenanigans

Shell 🙂

Red Powertex fabric hardenerlead grey Powertex fabric hardenertransparent Powertex fabric hardenerIvory Powertex fabric hardeneryellow ochre Powertex fabric hardenerpolystyrene heartembellishmentsMDF keyAngel cast embellishmentrose mouldsrust powderred ochre powercolor pigmentEasy coat varnishstone art3D flex, MDF hearts, MDF heart flowersMDF journalMDF name plate, Raspberry acrylic ink, white powercolor powder pigmentlipstick fizz SAL powder pigmentTerra-violet colourtrix powder pigmentparty pearls pigment pigment trayviolet valentine SAL pigmentSilver colortrix powder pigmentsunflower moulddaisy mouldspansy mouldsegg yolk acrylic inkpalm leaf acrylic inkvictorian papersEasy coat mattpink flamingo SAL powder pigmentterra-green colortrix powder pigmentbronze gold colortrix powder pigment,  heart rice paper.Edit”True love in a Secret Art Box-Shell North”

Wonderful Egyptian Journals

It was fantastic to be able to have the space to create a canvas when I was up at hq. But it wouldn’t be a project from me if it wasn’t a journal really. So here are three journal designs I put together for the Egyptian show.
To start with I coated  bases of the Tut and Nefertiti journal with yellow ochre Powertex. With the scarab journal I used black Powertex on the base. I then stenciled a sand and Ivory powertex mix through the wonderful things stencil on the covers. I coated the Tutankhamen and Nefertiti heads with a little of this sandy mix to give an extra bit of texture to the plaster busts.

 

I made some easy 3d flex clay and stamped into it with the stamps I specifically designed for the range which were the Heiro Heaven for the Nefertiti and Tut journals.

 

 Scarabella stamp for the front of the scarab journal. Some hessian for an extra bit of texture. I also used some of the mdf pyramid and ank trio on the front of this one. The pyramid was stencilled and the ank I put a little clay on the front and stamped into it. I did the same for the ank and pyramid on the back of this journal. The cracking of the easy 3d flex gives them extra dimension and lots of texture. For the inside of this journals covers I placed some rice paper over a black and gold base.

 

The first image was stuck straight on to the darker base and the second I painted a little ivory powertex on first before putting the rice paper on. It was interesting to see the different effects that you could get using them on the different coloured surfaces.

 

I sprayed all the journals with brown bister and then dry brushed for the varying shades of colour. The pages were also sprayed with the brown bister to make them looked aged and I also stamped some of the pages. Hope you are inspired by this wonderful range, we’d love you to share you makes on the powertex addicts united page on facebook. We love to see what you have been creating. Toodles Anna xXx

 

Slime and snails Or puppy dogs’ tails…….

What kind of magic spell would you use? Well Halloween is here. I love this time of year it is literally magic! Hope you have all had a fantastic time carving pumpkins, dressing up, eating toffee apples and lots of candy.
I decided to create a little Halloween project of my own. If I was at Hogwarts I would definitely be using this to write all of  my spells in.
For the base I used Black Powertex, I added some lace and used ‘the end’ stencil with easy structure for extra texture.
I love the black for how the colour pops once you have dry brushed your piece. I always lay out my design so I get a balance to the composition. I used a mixture of plaster and metal embellishments. The roses were created by pushing stone art clay into the rose mould.
I am loving the new mdf hingesalphabet and cobwebs they give great depth to any project. Once everything was coated with Powertex I left to dry and then dry brushed with turquoise and burgundy. Toodles Anna xXx

 

Lady of the sea

I was very excited about creating this piece. It was a sample for Hochanda and the first time I got to use my stamps and that I had seen them in the red rubber stamp format than just my hand drawn illustrations. I also got the fossil moulds https://www.powertex.co.uk/home/360-fossil-mould.html and fossil stencils and absolutely could not wait to use them. So what better way than to put them together and create a journal cover I thought.
I think this was one of the first times I didn’t think of a layout and just got straight in. I made some stone art clay and rolled it flat and then stamped into it with the Aprodites kiss stamp. The red rubber really does give exceptional detail.
So I was a bit happy go lucky with stencils and structure paste. I do love them for giving extra texture and depth to the pieces I create. Even if I do happen to cover them completely with embellishments in the end. You can see I also added some silk paper with Easy mat coat to the front cover above, you can just about see a tiny piece peeking through in the final piece.
 This was the inside of the front cover. I think it’s important to decorate all the space you have to hand, it is also good practice.
The back cover started life with just the fossil stencil on. https://www.powertex.co.uk/stencils/349-fossilized-30-x-30-stencil.html I then added some ivory and sprayed black bister on it when it was still wet. If you do this and then add a hair dryer you get some amazing crackling effects happening.
 I used Ivory Powertex over each side. Then sprayed with black bister. This gives a softer effect to just using the black Powertex. I forgot to photograph that stage as I had my head buried in all sorts of ideas for tv. I then dry brushed turquoise, gold and some pearl for the final colour. Would love to see what you create with my stamps. Please share on the Powertex addicts page on Facebook. We love to see what you have been up to. Toodle pip Anna xXx

 

 

My Secret Friend – Powertex Reference Journal

Hello again

Hands up if you get a bit jittery……..

….When it comes to dry brushing your project
….When you want to try a new colour scheme
….Using a new fabric/embellishment etc
….Your trying something new for the first time

Lets admit it, we all like our comfort zones

Well, I wanted to share with you my secret friend – a Powertex Reference Journal using the new Powertex MDF Journal Covers where I can experiment to my hearts content.

This is the place to play, to create, to experiment and be bold, this is your journal and you don’t need to share it with anyone unless you want to and as the quote on the cover of my journal says “the object isn’t to make art’

I started with the MDF covers, the perfect base for fabric sculpting, Structure Paste, Stone Art, Stencilling and 3D Flex play. I used different bisters to see what would happen if ……… then dry brushed over parts of it.  Ive left some for another day when I may want to try different pigment blends.  The inside covers give you even more play areas and you could always add a second set of covers inside the journal.

For the pages I used 100% cotton fabric to create pages in each base Powertex colour.  As you finish working with a colour why not use any remaining product to create these.  They don’t all have to be completed at once and the idea is to build up your journal as you have more tex adventures. These are just the base colours but imagine what other shades you could get by mixing these colours!!

 

I leave these to dry flat on the side, then use the cover of the journal as a template to mark where to cut.  Normal scissors will cut through the hardened fabric and a Sharpie pen can be used to write on the fabric to make notes of colours/ fabrics etc that you have used.

The holes in the binding side have been made using a crop’o’dile or standard hole punch,  If you lay the mdf cover over the page and mark through the holes with a sharpie pen you can see exactly where the holes need to go,

TIP – if using a hole punch, turn it upside down and remove the plastic tray from the bottom, slide your tex page into the punch then line up the dots you made with the hole punch holes and punch away.

I’ve bound it with book binding rings to make it easier to slip pages in and out and also to allow it to lay completely flat whilst I’m working in it.

 

So I now have the perfect place to test dry brushing colour combinations, adhere fabrics that I want to try, play with bisters, rust, structure paste, stone art, 3D flex and every other product in the range and I can add notes so that in the future I’ll know just what I’ve used.

And when Iv’e used up these pages I can just create more and keep adding them in to my own personal reference guide.

Hope you have fun creating your journal, the map to your very own creative adventures.

Bye for now
Annette

www.annettesmyth.co.uk
www.creativeadventurer.co.uk

 

Mixed Media Journal cover inspired by William Morris

I absolutely adore the beautiful nature inspired art and design work created by William Morris. Associated with the Pre-raphaelites. In the late 19th Century he created the Arts and Crafts movement as he felt the need for more creativity in the decorative arts. He also had a taste for the medieval. One wonders whether he drew his inspiration from the beautiful tapestry’s created in medieval times. As a textile designer himself I could imagine this would have been his Pinterest board of inspiration for some of his pieces.
My interpretation is a very subtle nod to Morris lots of pattern, nature, acanthus and texture with my own colourful twist. I like how innovative his work was and is to this day, it strived forward and created something visually stimulating and different to anything that had been before. But also keep the handicraft feel which was something he would stand by. A man after my own heart he would not let machines take over, this however would be a hindrance as not many people would be able to afford his work.
I also like how he didn’t fit into a mould and it’s inspiring to think he created his own movement and style from there. I often have trouble explaining my style because it too doesn’t always slot in to an established genre or form. I just explain my style as it’s very ‘Anna’. Anyway enough of my thoughts and wafflings here is what I created……..
As I do with all my designs I decided on my layout before I got messy. You don’t have to do this yourself, it’s just my preferred method of working. All materials were as usual supplied to me through Powertex UK in my lovely design team kit. Journal kits will be coming soon to the website.
Top Tip: Mould a job lot of all your embellishments so when you need them you can just focus on your projects. I used the daisy mould https://www.powertex.co.uk/moulds/367-fossil-mould.html with the stone art clay https://www.powertex.co.uk/14-stone-art to make mine.
I wanted to get some texture on the base layer of the journal before I put all my embellishments on so I added some lace, cardboard and Easy structure  https://www.powertex.co.uk/30-easy-structure through the arty quotes stencil https://www.powertex.co.uk/the-secret-art-loft/301-30-x-30cm-arty-quotes-stencil.html and then painted a coat of black Powertex over everything.
I then added on the embellishments and decided to add the acanthus on there too. I used the stone art clay on top of the mdf acanthus shape and then stamped into the clay with  https://www.powertex.co.uk/rosehart-studio-stamps/375-rosehart-studio-stamp-aphrodite-s-kiss.html
 I also stamped the back cover using aphrodite’s kiss and Cassiopeia with some ivory Powertex.
I used a piece of lace on the inside of the front cover. All the pages are bits and pieces of patterned paper and wrap I have in my stash. And the coloured yarn holds them all together.
I dry brushed the with yellow ochre, turquoise and burgundy powercolor and varnish. I also added some bling to the front. Well, I’m off to get stuck into to more creating. Toodle pip Anna xXx