Friday, March 9, 2012

Mixed Media Paint Chip Canvas

I haven't created very much art lately.  I've been in the biggest, longest flare up of my fibromyalgia in more than five years and it's pretty much brought some things - like making art - to a standstill.
Creativity is so much a part of me though, that I've found ways to nurture it. The things that I've worked on have involved small projects that I can do while reclining; things that are easy to step away from when needed.  Some embellishments made from the pages of vintage books and hymnals.  My first attempt at ATC's.  A bit of beading.

In lieu of having more current art to share, I'd love to show you the mixed media canvas that I created for my daughter during the holidays.  The original idea was found here.

I started by coating a square canvas with gesso, then layering vintage ephemera over that.  To give it a more aged appearance, I used a wash of acrylic paint and water.
I measured the canvas and cut paint chips to fit.  I wanted to create a tile-like effect, so I allowed for space between each chip and laid them out until I had an arrangement that I liked.  Before securing the chips to the canvas with gel medium, I lightly stained their edges with fluid chalk in a medium brown to give an illusion of depth.  I followed up with a second wash of acrylic and water.
I wanted to paint cherry blossoms onto the 'tiles'.  My drawing skills aren't very strong, so I first drew the blossoms out on paper, then used the drawing as a guide for painting on the canvas, using the new markers that were a holiday gift from my kids.
I then added a 3D dragonfly embellishment to the lower right portion of the canvas and finished off with several layers of high gloss to give the look of shiny tile.

I was really happy with the results.  The paint chips really do look like tile!  I'm hoping to make a second canvas to go with the first so that my daughter has a matched set above her sofa.
Has anyone else found ways to use paint chips in their art or their craft projects?  If you have, I'd love for you to share!


  1. OOOOOO, paint chips . . . free art supplies, in almost any color you can think of! I'm gonna have to think about this one (and tell all my friends to start collecting them for me every time they go to a building supply or paint store.)

  2. Lol! Free is definitely in my budget these days :) My daughter and I just grabbed multiples of everything available and gave a really big smile to the sour faced sales clerk. I'm hoping to do more projects with paint chips and I'm eyeing some of those free paint stick stirrer thingys too!

  3. love this - it's so pretty! i wouldn't have known you used paint chips if you hadn't said so, it really does look like tile. :)

  4. Looks wonderful Cynthia! I'm sorry to hear about your fibromyalgia :( I myself am in the midst of "Vertigo" which also just makes things that much more difficult. I hope that it clears quickly. Good on you for producing such a wonderful piece of work! i didn't know what paint chips I do..Thanks :))

  5. Love your painting! I made an hombre with parquet diamonds for my grandson at Christmas. Not sure if that makes sense. But anyway, I cut the diamomnds out of paint chips. And last year I made a heart garland by cutting the hearts out of paint chips. I have a Cricut and I have used paint chips to cut letters from. Poor paint companies probably gonna go out of business from us arty types. :)

  6. Wow thats beautiful. and very original. I have never used anything like this before but your work is inspirational and they do indeed look like tiles
    hugs June x

  7. This is beautiful...thank you for this creative idea!! And I sure hope you get to feeling better very, very soon!

  8. this lovely,, great idea thanks for sharing

    1. I love this Cynthia! I loved that paint chip idea when I first seen it, but the best part is you made it your own.I love the depth you created around the "tiles". I have quite a few paint chips I've collected, but haven't done anything with them yet.

  9. I can relate to the FM flare up - been shocking lately too, and I have some flu/tonsilitus or something as well.

    Just threw out all the paint chips last week, been saving for years and had done nothing with them so in the recycle bin they went. (Trying to tidy the creative space so the muse will come and visit a bit more often LOL)

  10. I love the use of paint chips! i have a huge stash as i have yet to decide on paint color for the 2 story family room, kitchen and dining room. maybe you have inspired me to pickthe colors so i can use the rest for artwork and scrapbookin! great ideas everyone. i empathize withyou on the fibromyalgia. i have rheumatoid arthritis and i flare at least once a month and everytime i am ready for my next round of meds . i admire you for keeping your creative juices flowing in spite of your pain and limitations. i found you from the SITS Forums. take care, tanya


Thank you for leaving your comments; I read and appreciate them all! Cynthia