Welcome to my blog!My name is Melody M. Nuñez, and I’m an artist and a writer. Please look around my website and make yourself at home. I post new blog entries weekly, and hope you’ll subscribe to my blog and come back often! To learn more about me, please view the “About” page…
Tag Archives: mixed media
Greetings from Book Central!
I received my first big shipment of books on Monday, which will be used to help promote the book, and I’m so excited! Feedback on my book has been very positive thus far, and I’m a happy camper. I’m looking forward to sharing my “baby” with more people in the coming months, so I also ordered some bookmarks and postcards to help with that. They arrived last weekend and I think they look fab. Hubby did such a great job on them!
In other book-related news, some (very) informal market research has been done, and two out of two bunnies surveyed find my new book delicious! ;]
So, have you entered my giveaway yet? I’m giving away 3 signed copies of An Altered Existence: Fictitious Stories About Faces from the Past, and will announce the winners this Tuesday, March 5, 2013. Please enter now by commenting on this link’s post, if you haven’t already! :]
I hope you have a great weekend, dear readers…
Welcome to a new installment of Another Look! This post is designed to share a handful of goodies from my archive while I’m recovering from my surgeries. I hope you enjoy these links, whether you’re seeing them for the first time or have seen them once before. Today’s category is Art! Just click on the name of the post to link over…
From collage and photography to art journals, my work includes a variety of media and materials. Which artistic mediums and materials (including those not shared on my blog) are your favorite?
Today’s special Wednesday post is in honor of the treasure hunt that Seth Apter is hosting on his blog. It’s called Buried Treasure, and he invites participating bloggers to share an older post on their site – one that newer readers might’ve missed, and that first-time visitors to the blog might enjoy. So if you’re visiting my blog today for the first time, welcome! I hope everyone enjoys seeing this post for the first or second time.
Here’s the original post, as published last year:
This blog post is a bit of a departure, since I usually share finished projects. You know – cards, collages, paper butterflies, altered metal cans – things of that nature. Today’s offering is an artistic experiment, and my sample grid is the “finished product”. It will serve as a resource for me, and I’m hoping it will inform and inspire you as well, dear readers.
In the interest of keeping my muse on her toes I decided I needed some time to play, so I set up an artistic exploration zone in the kitchen. I laid down some plastic to protect from spills, covered that with paper towels, and laid out a bunch of goodies – things like walnut ink, Schmincke dry metallic gouache, liquid acrylics, dried flower pollen, Twinkling H20’s, small plastic cups, brushes, and watercolor paper.
I began by taping a 16-section grid onto a sheet of watercolor paper with 1/4″ masking tape. I didn’t measure – just kind of eyeballed it. The taped lines helped keep my different concoctions from bleeding or slopping over into the next section, but they were only temporary. (I pulled up the masking tape dividers after everything had dried.) Next, I drew this same grid pattern onto a piece of scratch paper. I made notes of what items I combined in each section so I’d be able to replicate that look in the future if desired.
I moved through the grid, section by section. Sometimes I just laid down one product – sometimes I combined two or more. I took notes, enjoyed playing, and smiled when hubby came by and commented that I looked like a mad scientist working on an experiment in her laboratory.
Once the grid lines had been pulled up, I used number stamps and black StazOn ink to stamp a number into the lower left corner of each section. Finally, I wrote a numeric list of what I did in each section on the back of my experimental grid. If I need a reminder of what products I used and/or how I applied them, I can simply flip over my grid and look at the number corresponding to that section on my grid!
Here are some of my favorite sections/results/looks. Please keep reading for a complete list of what I used on all sixteen sections, and how I applied it – below.
#3 Walnut ink, brushed on in a circular motion, and gold & silver Schmincke powder.
#4 Walnut ink, water, and pink liquid acrylic mixed and then brushed on.
#7 Tiger lily pollen mixed in Diamond Glaze and brushed on. I’d plucked the pollen off some tiger lilies years ago, thinking it might make an interesting look, but it didn’t knock my socks off. It was worth trying, though!
#8 Walnut ink, silver Schmincke, and water brushed on thickly – the lighter side was blotted with paper towel.
#13 Acrylic ink with raw, undiluted walnut ink crystals – allowed to set a few minutes, then blotted with paper towel.
#14 Acrylic ink brushed on, blotted, dotted with candle wax, and the right half brushed with walnut ink.
#16 Acrylic ink with Schminke powder sprinkled on – not mixed or blended.
My notes for all 16 sections:
1. Plain walnut ink, brushed on
2. Walnut ink dabbed on with brush, blotted
3. Walnut ink, brushed on circularly, and gold & silver Schmincke powder sprinkled on and blended
4. Walnut ink, water, and pink liquid acrylic mixed and then brushed on
5. Gold Schmincke in Golden Soft Gel Gloss, brushed on
6. Tiger Lily pollen in Golden Soft Gel Gloss, brushed on
7. Tiger lily pollen mixed in Diamond Glaze and brushed on
8. Walnut ink, silver Schmincke, and water brushed on thickly – left side blotted with paper towel
9. Green Twinkling H20’s brushed on
10. Green Twinkling H20’s with walnut ink brushed on and blended
11. Purple liquid acrylic
12. Purple liquid acrylic with walnut in brushed on and blended
13. Acrylic ink with raw, undiluted walnut ink crystals – allowed to set a few minutes, then blotted
14. Acrylic ink brushed on, blotted, dotted with candle wax, and the right half brushed with walnut ink
15. Acrylic ink brushed on and blotted – right half brushed with Golden Acrylic Ground for Pastels. When the right half dried, drawn on with pencil, gel pen, black ink pen, and colored pencil
16. Acrylic ink with Schminke powder sprinkled on – not mixed or blended
I hope you’ve enjoyed taking a peek at my artistic experiment. Please let me know if you have any questions, and please feel free to share some of your favorite products and/or surface treatments! Also, please let me know if you’re interested in seeing additional experiments from time to time, or if you prefer “finished project” posts.
I love using a variety of materials in my collages, and this new collage – featuring a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson – is certainly made up of a variety of materials. New, old, smooth and rough textures, a photo, text, and even foreign language text! I used one of my own nature photos as the central image. I’ve thrown a bit of everything into this collage, including bamboo “clips”, metal tape, netting, and masking tape. And though the materials and textures are varied, I think the overall composition is harmonious.
In addition to using a wide range of materials, I enjoy using found objects in my work, and in this case I found three smashed, scratched, and rusted bottle caps that became three of the main decorative elements for the collage. I found them in a parking lot, tucked them into the cup holder of the car, and eventually worked them into this collage. I’m often drawn to damaged, imperfect things. Things with history. Things with character. And though most people wouldn’t have even noticed the mangled bottle caps, or would consider them rubbish if they did see them, I saw their beauty and potential and snatched them up off of the gravely pavement. Proof that one person’s trash is another person’s treasure…
Curious about how I made this collage? Here’s an overview:
Print an original nature photo onto photo paper, trim to your desired size. Print quote onto cardstock, trim to desired size. Tape along all four sides of both the photo and the quote with narrow silver metallic tape. Use a tracing wheel to add texture to the silver frames, then distress these frames by peeling up some of the edges, and by adding black metallic rub-ons. Slide bamboo “clips” onto one corner of the photo and quote. Set the image and quote aside.
Glue pale green handmade, textured paper onto your substrate/base. (I used an 8′ x 10″ canvas panel as my base.) Tear a strip of text, and glue along the left side of the collage – top to bottom. Attach a 5 inch-wide piece of yellow netting over the text, allowing enough length to wrap the excess around the top and bottom and secure to the back.
Punch four holes in each of three found, flattened bottle caps, and stitch an “x” pattern onto each one using black embroidery thread. Attach the bottle caps to the collage using Pop-Up Glue Dots. Attach the photo and quote to the collage using Pop-Up Glue dots as well.
“Frame” the collage by taping each side of the collage with two layers of masking tape. Treat each corner with a diagonal layer of masking tape as well. Accent the masking tape frame with black and gold metallic rub-ons – apply with your finger using a light touch. Finish the collage by signing in the corner, and by applying a blank sheet of cardstock to the back to cover what you’ve wrapped around to the back.
Please let me know if you have any questions about the materials or my creative process, dear readers. I always love hearing from you…
Welcome to my post on Seth Apter’s new book, The Pulse of Mixed Media: Secrets and Passions of 100 Artists Revealed ! It’s a pleasure to be a part of Seth’s blog tour, and I’m happy to share a bit about his wonderful new book with both my long-time readers and new readers. Welcome, new visitors!
I received an advance copy of this book last month, and really enjoyed pouring over the pages in order to get better acquainted with the book. And though I’d love to keep this advance copy for my personal library ‘tis better to give than to receive, so please keep reading for details on how to enter my giveaway!
One of the things I love about this book is it’s filled to bursting with two of my favorite things: artwork and insight. Not only are readers treated to the visual creations of many of the quoted artists, we get to peek inside their hearts, minds, and creative processes as well! The creative process is often a solitary one, and this book gives us a chance to hear what other artists are thinking and feeling about the art experience. Another great thing about this book is that it’s really thought-provoking. Sure, you’re reading the responses of others, but it also helps the reader to think about their own answers to the very same questions the author asks.
Another plus? Exposure to interesting new artists and their mediums! For example, after reading “The Pulse” I’d like to try using plaster for the first time. I’d also like to give encaustic work another try, and add some more dimension to my work. We never know what seeds of creativity will take hold in our hearts and minds, and this book is chock full of “creative seeds”.
144 pages long and full of both text and original artwork, this book is a treat for anyone who’s interested in the creative process and life as an artist. Whether you’re just dipping a toe in the lake of creativity or have jumped in and submerged yourself completely, you’re sure to find quotes, artwork and/or questions that resonate with you.
MY answers to 3 of Seth’s Questions
Seth asked those of us participating in the blog tour to answer three questions from the book ourselves. Here are my responses to three of his questions…
What do you think your preferred art medium says about your personality?
Well, given that my preferred art medium actually includes multiple mediums, I think it says I have varied interests and enjoy the challenge of working in different formats while still staying true to my aesthetic. I’m most drawn to mixed media, photography, collage, writing, and card design. And though I love vintage elements, and often incorporate them into my work, I tend to think of my art as “modern vintage”. Not only do I mix modern elements in with pieces from the past, my work is usually clean and uncluttered, and I believe this can be said about all my work – whether it’s a photo, a collage, or a short story.
How has the internet changed your artistic practice?
I suppose the biggest change the internet has had on my artistic practice is this blog. I launched it in August of 2010, and life hasn’t been the same since! Blogs weren’t really on my radar prior to MY blog’s launch, truth be told, so I was a bit late to the party. Since then, my horizons have definitely expanded. I still don’t follow a ton of blogs, simply because I don’t have a lot of free time, but I have started following some blogs organically. They’re mostly the blogs of creative friends/peers – folks I’ve networked with and/or come to know along the way in my own blog journey.
One benefit of the internet and blogging is the wonderful connections I’ve made with folks in my ever-growing network. I’ve made so many new in-person and online friends, and it’s been great fun! From teaming up with folks like Catherine Ryan Hyde, Dawn DeVries Sokol, and Seth Apter on giveaways featuring their books, to receiving donations for my art journaling program for disadvantaged public school children from some of my wonderful readers, it’s all been a blessing. The more the merrier, I say, and blogging has definitely brought more wonderful people, laughter, kindness, and creativity into my life. For that, I’m very thankful.
As for my own blog, it’s been such an incredible experience! When you’re committed to posting new content twice weekly, you have to keep making/doing/creating. Artistically, I’ve created so many things that might not have been brought into existence if I wasn’t blogging. And though some might find it scary to commit to producing new content on a regular basis, it’s been my experience that creating and sharing begets more ideas. The more I create and brainstorm the more I come up with ideas because I’m exercising my creative muscles, so to speak.
Is creativity built-in, learned or both?*
I think creativity is both built-in and learned. Some people are driven by a need to create – the “obviously” creative people. The ones destined to become artists, writers, musicians, and so on – regardless of what life throws at them. They embrace and relish their creativity. Just about everyone else is on a sliding scale of sorts, ranging from those who enjoy creating but are reluctant or afraid to call themselves artists in their respective medium to those who don’t think they’re creative at all. I believe that every one of us has the ability to thrive creatively, particularly if we devote the time, make the effort to find our niche, and make creating a regular practice instead of an “every once in a while” endeavor. This applies to art, cooking, interior design – the works!
How to Enter the Giveaway
One lucky winner will win a copy of The Pulse of Mixed Media. To enter, please complete all three of the steps below:
- Subscribe to my blog (via the email feed).
- Leave a comment on this post.
- “Like” my website’s Facebook Fan Page.
The winner will be drawn at random and will be announced on Thursday, April 19th, so please complete all three steps by Wednesday, April 18th.
Blog Tour Schedule
Here is the complete blog tour schedule, including blog tour “stops” before mine, for those of you who might be interesting in hearing what other bloggers have to say about Seth’s “baby”.
April 2 Rice Freeman-Zachery
April 3 Stephanie Lee
April 4 Ali Edwards
April 5 Ro Bruhn
April 6 Roben-Marie Smith
April 7 Nancy Lefko
April 8 Kelly Kilmer
April 9 Trudi Sissons
April 10 Melody Nunez
April 11 Dina Wakley
April 12 Stephanie Hilvitz
Thank you for including me in your blog tour, Seth – what a treat! Good luck with the giveaway, everyone!
Hi y’all! Happy Tuesday!
You’ll find images of my artwork in the GALLERIES, including photography, collage, and mixed-media. Here are a few examples of images that live there – won’t you visit the rest?
This photo of the Rock of Cashel (in Ireland) is in the Travel collection.
This pink water lily image is in the Nature collection.
This glass bottle image is in the Man-Made collection.
This piece, made in memory of my Aunt Bobby, is in the Collage collection.
This up-cycled metal can project is in the Mixed-Media collection.
If you visit my PUBLISHED WORKS page you can see where I’ve had my art and writings published – and in many cases you can click on the work’s title to see a scan of the tear sheet (magazines) or can link over to the website my work appears on. Projects range from collages and cards to Memory Jars (love that one!) and more! So please take a peek.
Here are a few projects/articles you might particularly like – I hope you’ll also take a peek at the others:
You may also visit my About page to learn more about my background, my Art Program page to learn how you can help me provide art education and supplies to at-risk public school children, and my Contact page if you’d like to email me with any questions or comments.
Oh, and Happy Valentine’s Day! Don’t forget to save your chocolate boxes so you can make your own version of my Heart’s Desire project!
I’m pleased to announce the winner of this month’s giveaway. The prize?
A signed copy of the book Creative Pilgrimage!
Congratulations, Karen Pruzansky, you won! I’ll mail out the book once I’ve received your mailing address, and hope you enjoy your copy of Creative Pilgrimage.
Thank you to all of you who entered the drawing – I really enjoyed reading about your favorite colors. I LOVE color, and though I’m a fan of almost all colors, pinky-purple, black, and silver are among my favorites!
I hope you all have a wonderful and colorful week…
I’m pleased to offer a copy of Jenny Doh’s newest book for this month’s giveaway! The book?
Creative Pilgrimage: An Exploration of Artful Gatherings and Discovery of Innovative Art Techniques
I’m very familiar with this book, and know just how fantastic it is because I’ve literally read it from cover to cover! I proofread this book for Jenny back in July, and eagerly poured over the pages. Not only does the book include information about national art gatherings, it also spotlights 14 spectacular artists and shares some of their wonderful how-to projects. From Alisa Burke to Flora Bowley, you’ll learn about the artists and will learn how to re-create their techniques and projects.
This soft-cover book is 152 pages long, and includes both full-color photos and detailed project instructions. An added bonus: this copy has been signed by Jenny Doh (the book’s creator), Kim Caldwell (Artistic Bliss event founder), and Stephanie Jones Rubiano (contributing artist). Nice! The book retails for $24.99, but one lucky winner will receive Creative Pilgrimage at no cost.
Flora Bowley, page 31
Stephanie Jones Rubiano, page 127
Lisa Kaus project, page 67
How To Enter
1. Subscribe to my blog at www.melodynunez.com. Please be sure to confirm your Feedburner subscription via the email that’s sent immediately after you subscribe. (Check your junk mail box if you don’t see it in your inbox.) If you’re already subscribed, you can skip this step.
2. “Like” my website’s Facebook fan page HERE. If you’ve already “liked” it, you can skip this step.
3. Leave a comment on this post sharing your favorite color.
You must complete all three steps to be entered. I will announce the winner on Tuesday, January 24th, so please enter by Monday, January 23rd. Good luck, everyone!
Some of my weekends rate higher on the creative Richter scale than others, and this past weekend was full of seismic activity! I’m still feeling the aftershocks four days later, and am thankful for all the creative bounty rumbled its way into my life. I attended a great class and hunted for arty treasure at a swap meet – such fun!
Saturday: An amazing class taught by Lisa Engelbrecht…
I was a lucky attendee of the first class to be taught at Jenny Doh’s home studio. Lisa Engelbrecht taught the all-day lettering & mixed-media class, and she’s as nice and as personable as she is talented. The class included lessons on lettering, foiling, working with acrylic inks to make washes, collage, and more! I enjoyed myself and learned a lot – what a great combo! It was a special treat to meet Lisa E., whose work I’ve admired for years, and to meet my fellow crescendoh.com Design Team member, Lisa Guerin.
Jenny did a great job of hosting the class at her home studio, and the other attendees and I were impressed with her attention to detail and “above and beyond” offerings. She provided goodies in the morning (including yummy scones), snacks and beverages during the day, and made everyone feel very welcome. Ordering lunch from a local eatery was optional – I opted in, and the sandwich I ordered was both delicious and huge and also came with chips and a big cookie.
Another nice touch: Jenny took a photo of our group, and printed up a copy of the photo for each of us. Combined with an “Art Saves” postcard, it made a lovely takeaway, and a great reminder of a wonderful class experience.
Rating: 9.0 on the Artistic Richter scale
Sunday: A trip to a local swap meet with my hubby…
One of my favorite pastimes is scouring swap meets, flea markets, and antique stores for odds and ends I can use in my artwork. Some of my favorite past finds have included vintage buttons, sewing notions, black and white photos, and handkerchiefs, but I’m open to just about anything that catches my eye. I try to limit my spending, and was on a tight budget last weekend, but managed to find some great additions to my art stash.
Spools of silky thread: The original price on these was $1 each, but hubby haggled and talked the vendor down to both colors for $1. Score! There were additional spools for sale (mostly in a deeper orange), but I limited myself to these two in the interest of economics and our limited storage space.
Vintage photos: I’m a sucker for vintage black and white photos, and happily pawed through a box of vintage photos at another stall. I knew I had to limit myself, given my budget and my existing, well-developed collection of photos, and narrowed my selections down to six snapshots. Hubby asked me how I choose the photos as I was looking, and I explained that I’m just drawn to some images more than others. I also told him that I love finding photos of people of color. Though I’m white, my family is a melting pot of different races, which I love. Additionally, it’s harder to find vintage photos of non-Caucasian people so it’s especially fun when I do stumble across them. The six photos I chose cost $2 total.
Zipper: I’ve come across some online tutorials for making roses out of zippers, and knew it was time for me to try making one when I found I could buy a zipper with chunky, metal teeth for a mere 25 cents.
Awl: (not shown) I found a small, wood-handled awl that will come in handy when poking, prodding, and piercing future artwork, and it was a bargain at $2.
It was a very satisfying morning: spending time with hubby, unearthing budget-friendly art supplies, enjoying the beautiful blue skies, and people watching. I can’t wait to visit another swap meet – who knows what I’ll find!
Total spent on art supplies: $5.25
Rating: 6.0 on the Artistic Richter scale
Please post a comment on this post if you’d like to share some of your recent artistic experiences or your favorite flea market finds!
A new piece of my artwork has been posted at crescendoh.com – hooray! This month’s Design Team project is a canvas-based mixed media piece. I started with the Danita & Me kit, and put my own twist on the project. Rather than use the front of the kit’s canvas, I turned it over and used the back! I love that the same kit yields different results for each and every person that uses it. We’re all unique, and these kits (and the related example projects on the crescendoh.com website) illustrate that perfectly.
In addition to using the back of the canvas, I incorporated two of my favorite mixed media elements into the piece: alphabet stamps/text and masking tape! Please click here to see the piece at crescendoh.com, to read the instructions, and to learn how I made it.
Twice, Instead of Thrice
I’m nearly six months into this blog, and am really enjoying the process. There’s been a bit of trial and error, and I’ve made little tweaks along the way. For example, I’ve let a feature or two fade away, but maintain a regular posting schedule in an effort to keep your interest and to keep creating and challenging myself.
I will continue to post regularly, and will continue with my mixture of “writing, art, and life in general”, but will move from three posts per week to two. Until I’m able to switch from full-time corporate to full-time creative this will help me maintain a better life balance. That said, I’ll be posting on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please post a comment on this blog post. For example, if you love a particular type of feature (recipes, haiku, travel, ethnic markets), and would like to see more, please let me know. If you’re too shy to post a comment, please get in touch through the comments page here. Your message will come directly to me via email.
Thank you for following my blog – I appreciate your time and your interest!