Friday, August 25, 2017

{Mixed Media Tutorial} Deconstructing An Art Journal Page - By Lynne Mizera

Hello Everyone, I hope you are having a lovely summer, and as promised here is my second special mixed media tutorial created for you as the STAMPlorations design teams take a break over the summer.

Today I am going to share all the steps I took to create this richly colored and textured mixed media page in my Art Journal.

Using only paint, stencils, a few die cuts, my gel pens and Ranger's Stickles and Liquid Pearls, I played uninhibitedly until I loved this vibrantly-colored two-page spread in my Art Journal.

I will demonstrate once again how you can take something that may look like a HOT MESS and turn it into a beautiful piece... because remember:

"If you hate it you are NOT finished yet!"

So go and get something to sip on because this is another one of my photo-heavy, step-by-step tutorials, but so worth the time it takes to read it, Smile.

First Step - Add Background Color:

I am working in my 9x12 inch Dylusions Art Journal with Dylusions paint. The paper is made to be able to take all the products we use in mixed media and is so smooth that the Dylusions paint goes on as easily as butter on warm toast. Use any paint or ink in your favorite colors and just get blocks of color down on the page.

Second Step - Add a Bold Stencil Pattern:

This will be a focal point so I wanted something really Bold - I chose the ARTplorations Daisy Dance stencil and used my black gesso on a very vibrant part of my page. Black is not a color I typically choose, but I wanted to do something really different for me.

The daisy pattern in this stencil is so large it is almost a mask and allows a lot of the background color to show through which is what I want. This pattern is too strong to apply to the entire layout, so I decided to keep it to the one page only.

Third Step - Add A Masking Stencil Pattern Or Words:

Here is where I use masks to cover my favorite bits of this background because in the next step I will be changing the look of the page completely.

The masked image will keep the original colors and patterns beneath it free from all the layers of paint and patterns to follow.

These large word masks from ARTplorations are my very favorite because they are so big that lots of my background will show through. I use a good painters tape to stick these to my pages, because it holds firmly but releases easily, and I use lots of it underneath my masks to make sure they will not move during all the layers that will follow.

A few things to keep in mind when deciding where to place your masks; look for brighter areas and look for lots of contrast. Bold color transitions show up better when you are done.

I now choose a color of paint that compliments most of the colors in my background, purple in this case, and using my small round foam blending tool I cover the pages in a light layer of paint leaving spaces with the original colors.

You can continue adding paint colors over top of everything, always leaving some spots of the previous color to show. I added some yellow-green over top the purple - which promptly turned to an icky yellowish brown. GROAN! But I am not too worried because I know I can fix this. Just Do Not remove the masks yet.

Fourth Step - Add A 2nd And 3rd Smaller Stencil Pattern:

This is where I can fix my icky background colors.

I choose a stencil pattern that compliments the original Daisy Dance but is a smaller pattern, I am using the ARTploration Daisy Play stencil. And now I will break up all the places where I am not loving the background by pouncing paint through the stencil at random all over the page.

And I do not stop at one color but keep layering more colors through the same stencil at random all over the page. next I added bright green.

And kept adding colors through the stencil until I liked my background. I even added a third stencil pattern, ARTplorations Oh My Stars, down the center of the page, just because!

As you can see, now the background does not look anything like the original pattern that is underneath my masks, which is what you want so when the masks are removed the images will stand out.

I continued to add colors where ever I didn't like the background and when I removed the masks, I ended up with THIS:

Fifth Step - Use A Gel Pen To Pull Out The Details

Next I use a gel pen to outline and highlight the areas to which I want to draw attention. Because the overall layout was so dark I used a white gel pen and that made my words really pop.

Look at the difference once you choose where you want the eye to focus.

Notice that I chose to outline only a few strategically placed flowers in the path I wanted the eye to follow. Keep this in mind when outlining and that less is more and too many outlines will make your piece look confusing or busy.

Last Step - Add Embellishments:

I used the CUTplorations Dragonfly Layering Dies to add die cuts in black paper to the left bottom corner of the page to help balance the heavy black pattern on the top right of the page.

I then filled the wings with sparkly Stickles and then really enhanced the flowers I outlined by filling the petals with Liquid Pearls in Cream.

So that's my tutorial for this month. I hope it inspires you to go and play with some of your own paint and stencils and that you now see masks in a whole new way!

Thanks for popping in to see me today and please do leave a comment if you like what you are seeing!

Lynne Mizera, Mixed Media Artist
for the STAMPlorations Mixed Media Design Team

STAMPlorations products Lynne used in her project:
ARTplorations Masks: Art HappensInspireLife Is Good

ARTplorations Stencils: Daisy DanceDaisy PlayOh, May Stars!

CUTplorations Dies: Dragonfly Layering Dies

Other products used in this project:
Ranger Dylusions Journal
Ranger Dylusions Paint
Ranger Stickles
Ranger Liquid Pearls
Uni-ball Signo White Gel Pen
Sharpie White Water Based Paint Pen


  1. OMG Lynne, so much gorgeous art candy for your Art Journal pages. I LOVED how you walked us through each step with your photos and descriptions. Well done and soooo appreciated. TFS Hugs...

  2. Absolutely amazing, vibrant and so creative x


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