Changing it up

So recently I've had this obsession with drawing and painting lilies. I've taken it upon myself to create the artwork for the invites for my wedding next year (eeek!) and so I've been creating lily after lily. I can't seem to settle on one I like so I've just kept some point I need to make a decision as I really should get them sent out to people, but the perfectionist in me won't let me settle on one, but for the moment I'm happy prattling away lol. I've still got time!

Also with the colder weather drawing in and the darker evenings on the way J and I have been enjoying more cosy nights in, in front of our new log burning stove. I grew up with a log burning stove in my parents house so I'm massively excited about the winter ahead! A year or two ago we purchased a hand smithed fire poker, we've now decided we'd also like a companion set for our fire and I've been spending time looking into blacksmiths and ironmongers.

This research led me down the path of tinsmithing and tin and copper work and into turn towards tin art. I can and do spend hours lost in research, jumping from one thing to the next and then often failing to look enough into what it was I had originally intended to research. I'm easily distracted and shiny things catch my eye!

This leads me on to this weeks blog post artwork. Inspired by the tin art I cam across I wanted to recreate something on paper, not being a tinsmith myself! I went back to something I picked up in school, way back when. It was using a glue gun to create relief in parts of a project. It took this idea and ran with it. I'm not particularly accurate with my glue gun, the most I really do is create blobs for when I'm fixing my paperclips, so the prospect of actually 'drawing' with one wasn't something I felt very confident about. For one thing trying to keep an even pressure is quite difficult, that and every now and then a huge blob with suddenly appear out the nozzle as it catches an air bubble in the glue stick. I do however only have a cheapy glue gun so this may be in part my problem.
So I began by drawing out some base lines to follow with the glue gun. I wasn't worried about the pencil showing through the glue, it was practice more than anything. Once I'd allowed the glue to cool I sploshed over some PVA glue, only a thin layer, to help the paper warp and create some shine and texture. I was trying, not sure how successfully, to emulate the warping in the metal as it's hammered into shape.

Once I allowed this to dry, with the help of the heat gun – just watch the hot glue here as it can start to soften back up again – I decided to dig out some boot polish and begin working it over the glue. I could have used paint here, but since I was using fairly unconventional materials I figured it fit. I let the polish gather around the glue, to help provide some definition. I left the finish quite rough as again I wanted to create the hammered like texture. The end result is quite crude, but overall I'm happy with it for a first attempt!

Following on from my reasonable success I decided to return back to my lily work and created a lily with the hot glue, but this time on watercolour paper. I honestly wasn't confident enough to hot glue an outline and work from a picture in my head so I pulled up a photo of a lily in Google Images to reference. After I let the glue cool I began adding watercolour to the page. The pooling of the water and colour was an interesting moment, as the glue essentially acts like a dam the water doesn't bleed and spread very well. It does however seep under the glue a little so you do get some nice gentle feathering of colour.

I am excited to see where I go from here and possibly experiment with adding glitter or mica powder to see what results I get!

Hope this inspires you to try other materials in your artwork or to use them in different ways than intended!

In a bit xx


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