Wednesday, September 25, 2013

My First Mail Art Swap via Creative Dream

Hello again! 

Over the years, I've enjoyed participating in several swaps, including paper art and ATC's. But I've never had a chance to create a piece of mail art like some of the yummy ones I've seen on Pinterest and around the Web. 

I stumbled upon the beautiful art blog of the talented June Crawford (don't you just *love* that name?) called A Creative Dream. I saw her badge for a Mail Art call, and I immediately signed up! 

I've been in a creative funk for quite a few months. I'm currently re-taking a class called Unlocking the Heart of the Artist which has helped me flow again. And I've been taking steps to make art a priority instead of allowing all the other distractions in my life. One thing that has helped was starting small. I wasn't going to freak out and try to fill a large canvas when I haven't been in practice. But I wanted the satisfaction of working on smaller projects that could be finished in a few hours. Mail art seemed like the perfect choice to get those creative juices flowing! 

My time came two weeks ago when I was did a bit of housesitting for my brother-in-law and take care of his urban chickens. The ladies in the henhouse weren't much of a hassle, and so I had a delicious amount of quiet time and a cool, inviting house all to myself. 

Cluck! Cluck!

I knew I wanted to use a quote, so I chose this favorite by Shakespeare. I used a heavy gel to build up the textures on the postcard and add some depth. The butterflies have a 3-D effect. I spent hours adding layers of paint, and enjoyed using pearlizing medium to give it a sheen. I wanted it to look shiny like it had freshly rained and the clouds were parting. I also used Sharpie markers on top of some areas of paint, and enjoyed how they appeared metallic when used over metallic acrylic paint. The sunshine had a jewel effect that I'd love to recreate on a larger canvas. Here is the finished result:

"Love Comforteth Like Sunshine After the Rain" ~ Shakespeare
I always notice additional surprises in my work after they are finished that were totally unintentional. In the postcard above, you see the sun shining brightly at the top left. But if you turn the card upside down, it looks like purple thunderclouds raining down! There also appear to be stars shining in the sky, a bit of a contrast between the day and night happening. The blue raindrop above the word rain is actually a paper butterfly wing. I continued painting layers on in until it ended up turning into a raindrop. I kind of think of it as a large teardrop as well. The Victorian lady looking in the mirror came from some gift wrap I had. She feeling the sun shining down on her lovingly. I like to think that she went through some darkness and depression, but now she's finding hope and love....the cloud is lifting! This is how I felt when I painted this piece. I felt the depression lift and I had courage to work on more pieces of art during my restful retreat. 

I will share updates soon.

Artfully yours,