I did this last month. (in one day)
I made about 20 test runs on white butcher paper to find just the right color combination. And settled on this:
And here’s all the stuff it took to get the paint onto the wall.
The stencil is from Trimbelle River Studios. The room doesn’t have much in the way of long walls so I did a lot of fudging to make the motifs fit.
I used oil paint sticks and stenciling brushes. (Shiva: Olive Green, Yellow Ochre, (and a little Barn Red) Windsor/Newton Manganese Blue.) First time I’ve worked with paint sticks. Because they have to be smushed onto a pallette before you pick up the paint on the brush it takes longer than stenciling with acrylics but I like the way the paint has dimension on the wall and the fact that the colors are somewhat transparent.
The painters arrive tomorrow to finish the great house painting project. They will be painting my office, the DH’s office, and my studio. I am working out of a little rolling cart on the kitchen counter. Severely limited in terms of materials and tools.
The House of Mythical Creatures is on hold for the week. It’s ready for each of the images to be mounted. I have to figure out how I’m going to attach the images one to another. I’m thinking about some sort of bookbinding. Hence my project for the next week is to experiment with some ways of binding books.
Today I made (my first) two books.
A strange little folded book whose pages open up further than you think they ought to. I think it’s boring. But the technique of simply attaching the pages to a continuous backing has merit. It would have to be more than just a line of black mat boards taped together, that’s boring too.
The second book looks like a checkerboard with overlapping pages with cutouts. I can’t really see how it fits with THMC. This one has possibilities for some other projects rattling around in the back of my head though. Especially once I get over the idea that the cutaways have to be square. I’ll make some more of these in the next couple of days.
I have discovered that I still get annoyed when cut lines and parts don’t line up exactly. I’ve always been particular about those sorts of things. Luckily I have learned a number of tricks over the years. Story sticks and cutting multiples in one go are the first two I used.
The instructions for the checkerboard book called for cutting out six templates (from a xerox) and then tracing the templates onto the page paper and then cutting those out. A recipe for disaster. Much better to figure out the dimensions of the full page (3−3÷4″ high x 5″ wide plus a 7⁄8″ gutter) and cut a bunch of page blanks. Then I could figure out the dimensions of the cutaways (1−1÷4″ square) and take them out of the full size pages. Except the little tiny one at the front. I just cut that one on it’s own.
PS Yes, I realize that there are no decent pictures of recent work on THMC. I’ll fix that soon.
edited 25.june.2008 to correct image links
The painters are done and I have reclaimed my space.
The move out and back into the studio was almost painless. Probably because I had recently reorganized all the crap and there had not been much time for cruft to accumulate. My office is another story.
edited 25.june.2008 to correct image links
I’ve been collecting up the old photo albums and sorting the pictures. There are a number that I’d like to use in the collages. But of course I don’t want to glue up my only copy of great-grandmother’s portrait so… It’s time to get scanning. I’ll leave the hassles of getting an elderly scanner to talk to any of the newer computers. It’s all connected now and that’s all what counts. I started with the photos that the MiL put together in a frame for my husband. They’ve been sitting on the wall for too long and the color ones (50’s — 70’s) have faded badly. We had wondered who some of the people in the older pictures were and hoped that identifying information was on the backs of the photos. Of course it was. Yeay Emmy! I got the pictures out and started scanning them. I did a few at 600 dpi but it was tortuously slow so I switched to 300 dpi. I think it’s sufficient for what I need. Now that the pictures are stored away from light (and other evils) I can go back and rescan at higher resolutions if I want to. TBC edited 25.june.2008 to correct image links
I’m a fan of birdfeeders and clever product design. The Architect’s Birdfeeder, designed by Doug Patt
Pratt, is good looking and an intriguing engineering solution.
The key feature — it ships like flat-pack furniture but better because it goes together without that nasty cheap little hex wrench thing.
The animation of the assembly of the birdfeeder on the home page of the site is brilliant.
- It takes up only part of the page — good for those on slow connections as you can start using the page before the animation finishes loading.
- It offers information about the product that can best (perhaps only) be communicated using animation.
- There’s very little excess information in the animation. Just a little sparkle toward the end of the assembly on the hanging wire. Very effective in signaling the end of the process.
I first saw this in one of my RSS feeds (can’t find it again — drat) and I’m hoping that I can get one. Though with the publicity I wouldn’t be surprised to find that they are sold out. I’m not sure how well it will work in the ridiculous amount of rain we get here in the winter but as a summer feeder feeder it’s going to be aces.
Took an upholstery class at Pacific Fabrics over the weekend. I want to make new cushions for the porch furniture.
purple is good!
The result of about 5 hours of work is this lovely and quite useless cushion. I like the drip effect of the stripes and dots.
It’s not as hard as I thought but not easy either. Mostly I end up with an aching back.
In order to hide the backs of a number of monitors and computers in Jim’s office we put up a cheap three panel screen.
the screen in jim’s office
It’s very boring thing. But… the panels are white “canvas” and that means they don’t have to stay boring. So I finally found a stencil that I wanted to use in a new book “Stencil Me In”
The birds on the right — crows! The original is only 8 inches tall and the screens are 60 inches — filling them up with crows would be very busy. So… time to make the little crows into big crows. I have a scanner and Photoshop and a printer, and a lot of tape. And they are — 18 inches tall now.
Next to make a stencil. I used an old manila file folder. (You can still see the label if you look closely.) By taping the enlarged stencil pattern over the top and cutting very carefully with an exacto knife — two fresh blades — I ended up with a decent stencil.
Then I got out the linseed oil and rubbed it into the paper. It takes along time to cover the folder evenly. Not too much (that would be gloopy) and not too little (that would be splotchy.) It took 24 hours for the stencil to dry enough that it wouldn’t bleed oil on the fabric.
oiling the stencil
Next up — the actual applying of paint!
More on the screen for Jim’s office.
Once the stencil had had chance to dry I took the fabric panels off the screen (yeay velcro.) I didn’t do any prep work on the fabric — poly(?) canvas. The paint will stick well enough and I don’t expect to try to wash the panels. By the time they’re dirty I’ll be bored with them and want to do something else.
To hold the fabric steady I clipped it to the thick foam core boards that I use to stretch watercolor paper. I measured for a rough placement for the image and then eyeballed the fine alignment.
I used brown paint (oil bar) and a large stencil brush. Because the stencil was paper coated with linseed oil I couldn’t use the repositionable adhesive that I use on plastic stencils. I used a little tape in each corner and then worked carefully holding the little tabs and bits down with my fingers as I painted. It’s messy and a little slow but worked quite well.
Here’s one of the panels finished and propped up for drying.
I had planned to use two images on each screen. One facing each direction. So I started with the two crows facing left. Two panels have the crows in the top half and one has the crow in the bottom half. Then I would clean the stencil and flip it for the rest.
Oil paint takes a while to dry and I needed the flat spaceback in my studio so I hung the panels back on the screen. Figuring that I’d take them down later this week and do the rest of the stenciling.
Oh never mind — FINISHED!
And here’s my celebratory drink.
Lillet over ice and orange slices. The ice cubes are shaped like stars!
Today we declared a scavenger hunt day. We have a list of things we’d like to have for the house but haven’t found just the right one yet.
We were wildly successful.
two finds in the scavenger hunt today!
Our last gazebo was destroyed by the snow last winter. We finally found a gazebo/screen house that was small enough for the spot between the salad garden and the house.
It comes in a long thin box.
The last one was a right royal b* to put up. Other than not being able to find one of the parts (we didn’t look hard enough) this one was pretty dang easy.
all ready for the table and chairs.
We have another find in the other big box but right now it’s time to make some supper.
I got tools from Rio Grande this afternoon.
Clockwise from the top. Ring mandrel — very pleased with the quality and heft. Parallel pliers — thank you Sarah L. for getting me addicted to those expensive little dears. Raw hide mallet for banging on metal. Ring clamp for holding onto things and not sanding my fingers, and a pair of tiny pointy snips for getting into tight spaces.
But there is no way that I’ll be doing any work at the bench for the next couple of days.
there’s a bench under there somewhere
I have to finish the patio furniture cushions first. (They are gonna be great!)
new cushions in the making