Colorful Art Panels

Hello Creative Friends!

Recently, I received a huge box of products from The Crafters Workshop and am very familiar with the amazing quality of these stencils, but I had no idea what to expect with the new TCW Heavy Body Acrylic Paints and mediums. I am an admitted art supply snob. I have worked with the worlds best quality materials because of my career in the art materials industry. I was a little skeptical when I saw the generous sized tubes with pretty color names and thought to myself, these are cute but are they good?

Well, don’t let the fun names on the tubes fool you, these are serious artist quality heavy bodied paints! They boast an extremely high pigment load, great mix-ability and intense color strength. I love that they dry to an almost matte finish which makes them look more like an oil paint without that plastic look some acrylic paints have.

I’ve been wanting to do a series of colorful art panels to group onto a wall for different looks so I picked up four Ampersand Gessobord cradled 6” square painting panels for this project. These panels are great surfaces to paint on, they don’t need framing and they are ready to hang!

I had no idea how the mediums and paints would work with the technique I was about to try so I made my first one during Monday’s solar eclipse. I call it “Totality” because it reminds me that we are all connected and the celestial event seemed to unite our country even if only for a few hours.

To make an art panel, mix a blend of TCW Clear modeling paste with Orange Slice heavy bodied paint using a palette knife. It’s amazing how intense these colors are!

Lay the TCW731S Celtic Knot stencil on the surface of the Gessobord panel and apply the mixture of modeling paste and color in a scraping motion over the stencil being sure to cover the entire area of the stencil. Carefully lift the stencil up and off the panel. When the modeling paste mixture is bone dry, paint a thick layer of Grape Jelly heavy bodied paint on the panel, then another layer of Candy Apple Red.  Wait until the surface is dry and not tacky, and wet sand the layers of color to reveal the orange image of the knot. I used 400 grit wet/dry sand paper.  Sand in a circular motion focusing on the raised areas and keep the surface wet while sanding. It’s better to go slow and wipe the surface with a damp rag to see your progress.

To bring out more color and to soften the highlighted areas, paint a wash of transparent Quinacridone Red and Quinacridone Gold over the entire panel. Any transparent acrylic paint will work.

Grape Jelly heavy bodied paint was then brushed on the sides of the panel to create more dimension. Keep adding color and wet sanding if necessary until you get the look you want.

Brush a thin layer of satin acrylic topcoat to the top and sides of the panel with a flat brush to finish. I suggest brushing on two or three coats of topcoat to give the colors more depth and dimension.

Try this technique with different stencils and color combinations to create a statement or tell a story. Creating your own modular wall art can be arranged in many ways and can fit into just about any space. Enjoy!

~Karen Elaine

TCW Brand Ambassador

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