Art has a way of calling to us when we’re not even thinking about it. Ideas come in the middle of the night, and we thrive when we’re doing things that are simply related to creativity, such as shopping for art supplies or browsing others’ work. If it were anything else, it could be considered an addiction. I like to think of it as a passion.
Jen Crossley gets it, especially when it comes to working with metal in mixed-media art.
“I will warn you now, metal etching is very addictive,” says Jen. “It’s a very easy technique that can be applied to many creative ideas, including book covers and jewelry. Unique effects can be achieved with simple supplies like rubber stamps or even drawing with a Sharpie® marker. And the range of color you can achieve with different patinas is endless. No need to be intimidated by the supplies; try it once and you just may be hooked.”
Jen Crossley’s Mixed-Media Art Tips for Working With Metal
• When cutting metal, insert the metal all the way to the back of the tin snip. This will give you more pressure to cut and won’t strain your hand if you’re cutting a lot. Cut in one continuous motion, if possible, to avoid making nip marks in the metal. These marks appear at the end of a cut, so you want the least amount of cuts possible to avoid them.
• Don’t pull the file backward and forward as you file; it will dull the file. Hold the file straight up and down, perpendicular to the metal. File downward, then lift the file off the metal and position it at the top again and continue in that motion. If you don’t hold the file straight, it will file the metal unevenly and make a beveled edge, which you don’t want.
• Avoid getting any fingerprints on the metal. Oil from your fingers will leave an impression and will affect the etching.
You can learn so much more from Jen with her Cloth Paper Scissors DVD workshops, from which there are several to choose (click here to browse them and watch previews). Which one will call you to create?