What a beautiful day by the river it was yesterday! It was the kind of day that we typically think of as 'spring' but actually only occurrs once in a while. The sun shone brightly all day long and the air was calm and warm. You didn't even need a jacket really. It was the type of day we all have been waiting for during the long, cold winter. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I was happy that I felt much better as well. Whatever got hold of me on Friday seemed to have passed just as quickly as it arrived. I was grateful for that and I felt happy and energized and ready to tackle another new design.
My next project is going to be something that will actually be two projects. The first part of it would be painting and the second part of it would be a woodworking design. They will work together to make a fun and functional project that would brighten anyone's day. (At least I hope they will!) It will take a couple of days for me to develop everything, but I will be able to show you the step by steps as far as I get. So here we go . . .
Several years ago, I had taken a photo of a beautiful spring iris in my front yard when I still lived in Tinley Park, IL. I remember it was a lovely spring morning, much like the one I experienced yesterday and the iris really caught my eye. I wanted to paint it and I did so and I was pretty pleased with how it came out. I had made it into a painting pattern way back then, but my software that I used was very different and since then technology (as well as my own knowledge) has come a long way. While the pattern was OK – it wasn't up to the calibur of the patterns that I make currently. It even used a brand of paint that I no longer use. It was time for a makeover.
I have recently (in the past year or so) seen many of my fellow painters use a surface called "Roc-Lon" to paint banners on. Roc-Lon is a thick backing type of fabric that is used to line draperies. The painters have used it for things like banners and even as floor cloths because of its durability and ease of painting. Another great property of it is that you can cut along its edges and it doesn't fray or unravel. This opens up a great many possiblities for making some pretty cool designs. I have a 'stash' of it here with me that I wanted to use to make banners, and I thought this was the perfect opportunity to try it out.
I began by creating a banner that is 12" wide and 20+ inches long. I haven't quite figured out the length yet, as I will when I make the banner topper, so I left it a bit long until I decided.
I painted the background in soft, buttery creme color, and added just a hint of purple, blue and green to make a mottled finish.
(I know the color isn't quite correct, but you can see the background colors with this picture.)
After base coating, I did the first highlights:
Next came the prelimanry shading:
And the second, deeper shading:
You can see that little by little, it is coming to life.
I found that I love painting on Roc-lon. It is so easy to do and it holds the paint beautifully. Today I am going to probably finish up with the lettering for the banner, then I will move on to designing the wood topper piece that will hold it. My goal is to have one topper and have interchangable banners to depict several different season. I think it will be a nice project when finished.
I really like being able to work on stuff like this. I can think of many places these pretty banners would look nice. If one is skittish about putting them outdoors, they would even look nice in an entry hall or sun room. And of course, the designs can be used on just about any surface that one would choose.
I hope you enjoyed seeing the beginning of this project. I have received many notes from people who love to see the step by step process and I am happy to share it with you. It just shows how when breaking things down, they are much simpler than they seem.
I wish you all a wonderful Sunday. Enjoy your weekend and have fun creating something wonderful! :)
If we shall take the good we find, asking no questions, we shall have heaping measures. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"