Art Materials,  Materials & Techniques

Valentine Heart Canvas

This canvas was created mainly as an excuse to experiment with acrylic string gel medium.

String gel is basically an acrylic painting medium that makes your paint more ‘stringy’ or stretchy, allowing you effectively to ‘draw’ directly with the paint by flicking and dribbling it about. As you can imagine, the amount of ‘control’ you have over your ‘drawing’ is limited, but simple shapes are achievable, and I rather like the dynamic spontaneous scribbles you get this way. All in all it’s lots of fun to use.  It is however rather expensive, so before I bought it, I experimented with achieving the same effect with PVA medium.  I found that this was successful in every instance except for the fact that for some reason it dulled the colour of the paint once it had dried. The gorgeously bright colours you got while the paint was still wet, were disappointing when dry, and this happened not only with tempera paint, but also with good quality acrylic too. With the proper gel though, this did not happen, and the colours remained bright and true.

For this canvas I drew the heart shape by using a stick to ‘dribble’ the paint onto the canvas, using several different colours.  We then sprinkled glitter onto the wet paint, and after it had dried, sprayed the canvas with some mounting spray and then sprinkled some more glitter on around the heart shape. The canvas has been painted so that I can hang it diagonally in a diamond shape, just for a change. The whole thing is wonderfully girly – the kind of thing I don’t get the chance to do a lot with the boys!

I also got some Pouring Medium to experiment with at the same time, so I shall let you know how I got on with that soon!