When Spills and Impatience Lead to New Ideas for Mixed-Media Art

I always like to get out our decorative tablecloths and kitchen towels for special holidays, since these are an easy way to punch up the color for parties and even small gatherings. I choose green and red for Christmas; variations of orange for our Halloween pumpkin-carving party; and red, white, and blue for patriotic holidays–you get the picture.

When I saw the newest Cloth Paper Scissors Art Lesson on how to make a table runner inspired by summer colors, I was doubly excited. Not only is this a great mixed-media art project in and of itself, but you can also come back to it again and again to make runners to use throughout the year for all kinds of occasions. Brilliant!

Make a table runner with this mixed-media art lesson by Jenny Cochran Lee | ClothPaperScissors.com
Mixed-media art project

Jenny Cochran Lee takes you through the steps in July’s Art Lesson. To give you a little taste of what’s in store, she has also given us tips on how to “make a splash” using rice paper, acrylic paint, and a few other supplies. Celebrate summer with the colorful fun you’ll have with this Art Lesson! Make sure you let us know what you come up with yourself. ~Cherie

Make a splash! Mixed-media art projects | ClothPaperScissors.com

Make a Splash by Jenny Cochran Lee

As a mixed media artist, I’m always looking for new techniques. Like many of you, I comb the internet, books, magazines, and junk stores, always in search of a new way to create. But over the years, I’ve learned that some of my best techniques are discovered in my own studio–by accident. Spills, impatience, and forgetfulness have led to some of my favorite ways to create. Here’s an example of one accident (not cleaning my surface before moving to the next step) that turned into quite a splash.

• Rice paper (use the kind on a roll, as it’s sturdier than individual sheets)
• Plastic wrap
• Masking tape
• Acrylic paint
• Water & water cup
• Paintbrush
• Paper towel or baby wipe

Step 1: Cover your work surface with a sheet of plastic wrap. Tape the sides down so that the plastic stays on the work surface.

Step 2: Cut a piece of rice paper to paint.

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Step 3

Step 3: Put a small amount of acrylic paint in a cup and add enough water to make a thick wash of paint.

Step 4: Paint the entire surface of the rice paper.

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Step 5

Step 5: Carefully lift the wet rice paper and set aside to dry. DO NOT clean off the plastic wrap. You should see a random pattern of paint splatters on the plastic wrap.

Step 6: Cut another sheet of rice paper.

How to make mixed-media art | ClothPaperScissors.com
Step 7

Step 7: Gently lay the rice paper on top of the paint splattered plastic wrap. Allow the paint splatters to bleed through the rice paper.

Step 8: Carefully lift the rice paper and set aside to dry completely.

Step 9: Clean the plastic wrap with a baby wipe or paper towel.

Mixed media art projects | ClothPaperScissors.com
Step 10

Step 10: When the paint splattered rice paper is dry, create other washes of color and paint designs on the surface. The paint splattered areas will resist the additional colors.

For the complete instructions on decorating the paper and turning into a colorful runner, check out this month’s Art Lesson. I hope to see you there! ~Jenny


Blog, Mixed-Media Techniques, Paper Art and Zen Doodle


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