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Mixed Media Tools

Recently, my son, the college man, left to purchase and occupy his own home, leaving an empty room in our house to be redone and reoccupied. After much deliberation, my husband and I agreed to make it into the project/sewing room that I always dreamed of. As I began to organize the new digs, I rediscovered so many great art supplies that I had not recently used and it sparked a lot of creativity in my mind and got my wheels spinning! Last month, we talked about mixed media and how much fun that can be, so this month I thought it might be good to introduce (or reintroduce) you to some great products from the Loew Cornell line. If you have not started your own little experiments after reading the last mixed media article, I hope you get inspiration to play with some new tools now.

As a painter, I sometimes get locked into using my brush and tools with only paint and mediums, however, I do use them to spread glue, matte medium, texture paste brush on glazes, glitter, ink and other items. My favorite work horse brush is the Loew-Cornell White Nylon 798 glaze brush. I have a couple of these that I have been using for over 6 years and they still perform great. I recommend that all of my students begin with one in their kit for basecoating, washes and applying sealers and varnishes. There is something about the white nylon that keeps it in great shape even when I am not as diligent about cleaning as I should be. While shopping at Jo-Ann’s the other day, I noticed the gorgeous new Loew-Cornell Studio Elements ™ brush sets. They come in sets of long- and short-handle and hair-types white nylon, golden taklon, bristle, and natural hair. These sets were such a great value I picked some up, just to experiment with. And while you are there, check out the new Loew-Cornell Open Stock brush rack with all the tried and true favorites: La Corneille®, American Painter ™, and Arttec ™!

While I was at Jo-Ann’s I also had to visit the Simply Art set. This line encompasses all the basic art supplies, including watercolor pencils, oil pastels, charcoal pencils, and art kits. I am totally in love with the oil pastels for smoothing in soft backgrounds and blending, and I found that masking over the background and then laying the pastels on their side and blending over the mask creates a beautiful background. (Have you ever thought of using the fine line painting pen to decorate and mask in a section by filling the well with masking fluid? well…just DO IT!!) Recently, I got my hands on the watercolor crayons from the Simply Art line and they made my heart sing. I feel like I am limitless with these babies in my hand. You can blend, color, smooth, layer, wet (or not wet) for backgrounds or whatever and they add a new look to your art.

Stenciling is HUGE!!! Using stencils for backgrounds, texture, embellishments, designing, etc., was a highlight at CHA so we know a new old trend is reemerging. Stencil brushes, Debbie Mitchell stipplers and the dome round are my favorites for keeping stencils soft or bold depending on my mood.

I am never short on wood surfaces but have been including the great little wood shapes from the Woodsies® line in stuff I paint everyday.. But, when I was in Couer de Alene recently, I visited an art gallery and there were some beautiful jewelry pieces fashioned with the wood cutouts, beads and charms. (makes my head spin how many fun things we can come up with!) I have now taken to using them to label jars, organize my treasures and add them into my mixed media projects to create dimension.

We all like to add something new to our art and now is the time to start experimenting. If you are thrilled with the results (too scary…) then just turn it into something for Halloween!!! That is my plan and I am stickin’ to it!

Have a great Creative Day!!!

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