Mixed media mayhem

Can a painting be creepy and pretty at the same time? Hmm...

Day 192: Squirmy City

Having worked on another mini art quilt yesterday and published a “how to make an upcycled art quilt” Instructable today, I was still in a textiley mood. So I grabbed some teal embroidery floss, thread and a bit of fabric (old sheer curtain panel) and an 8×10 canvas. As I sat there wondering what to do with my handful of stuff, I looked at a photo of Istanbul in a pile on my table and grabbed it. I headed into the office and made a slightly enlarged copy of it on our laser printer, then went back to the studio with a plan.

Sky detail- colored thread under fabric and matte medium with a tint of blue.

After some clear acrylic matte medium, blue paint, pen, charcoal and pastel, I ended up with this painting that makes me feel “squirmy”. It’s partially because the fibers in the sky make me think of Morgellan’s and Chemtrails, but it’s also because the palette and combination of media is out of my comfort range. I usually work with bright, cheery, colorful palettes. This one is kind of dark and eerie.

Squirmy City Detail

I re-drew some of the building details with pen over the part of the photo-transfer the fabric covered, which kind of made the image merge from reality to illustration in my mind. Then when I added some charcoal and pastel, it felt like one of those partially colored black and white prints that were so popular in the 90’s, which I always thought were kind of weird. You know the ones. You’d go into the poster store in the mall (back when posters were popular enough to necessitate their own store) and there would be tons of those trippy, hidden image ones with people staring at them and some jerk standing behind them saying “it’s the Statue of Liberty! It’s a UFO! It’s a ship!” [and yes, of course I’ve seen Mallrats!], and then there would be a bunch of those black and white photos of kids kissing or holding hands with a red balloon or beret or rose.

No? Just me? I’m pretty sure I remember it correctly. Our high school was right across from the mall and we spent a lot of time there. After school. Not during school, cutting class and getting home in time to field the absentee call from the office in my best mom voice or anything. 😀 Can you tell my mama reads this blog? Anywho, this is a kind of different mixed media piece for me, so we’ll see where it leads.

"Squirmy City", mixed media painting on 8x10" canvas

One thought on “Mixed media mayhem

  1. I remember those posters… the magic ones and the black and white ones.
    I like this piece but in a this-is-kinda-eerie way. It feels a bit like the end of the world is coming… or an alien invasion… It’s definitely different from your other pieces, that’s for sure.


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