A gorgeous piece of art can bring a room together and make it feel “designer” through color, style, and scale.
Unfortunately, good art is expensive.
I totally understand the price tag. As an amateur artist myself, I appreciate the time, skill, and experience that comes with making a piece of art. Sadly, that still doesn’t add the funds to my bank account.
So, what do you do when what you want, hello Lynn Sanders Art, is just not in the budget right now? I get creative and create a pretty, large abstract piece that was completely free. Yep, that’s right; I spent $0 on this project.
I had a large canvas in my closet from a failed attempt at making a Lulie Wallace-inspired piece a few years ago. I never displayed it. Lulie, if you’re reading, I think you’re amazing btw.
I decided that I couldn’t really make the canvas any worse, so I came up with the idea to transform it into a modern, abstract painting. I researched a few ideas and decided on a simple design that would bring in the cream, pink, and buff tones I was craving right now.
To start, I used spackling to cover the canvas with texture. I used mostly horizontal strokes. Once that was dry, I painted the most of canvas in a dark gray to give extra dimension to the lighter colors I would add on top later. I used a sample of wall paint for nearly all of my colors — this really cost me $0!
I allowed the gray to dry and sectioned the painting into thirds. This is an art “rule” for compositions to be more interesting and balanced. On the top two thirds, I painted a cream wall paint in a rough, dry technique. I made sure to allow some of the gray to show through. I did the same with a soft blush color on the bottom. Where they met, I used the blush with some acrylic paints I had on hand to make a rusty copper band. I love copper, and the orangey tones tie in with the warm woods in other parts of the house.
The rest of the painting involved me layering more whites, nude, and fawn tones until I was satisfied with the look of it. One technique that I found helpful was to use a metal spatula to apply the paint. I used a dry-brush technique to blend it in and soften the final result.
To add a little bit of glamour, I took my gold spray paint, sprayed it in a paper plate, and applied it to the center with the metal spatula. It looks like hand-applied gold leaf.
I staged the finished painting a couple of different ways. Which is your preference?
I am really pleased with the result. Always the businessman, Mr. Bayou wants me to sell them. Thoughts? Anyone interested?
I plan to make a frame for the canvas but that has not happened yet. I do think that will give it a more finished look. Either way, please let me know if you attempt this project! I think it’s also important to remember that trying something like this is always an adventure. I wasn’t sure it would turn out well, but if I never tried it, my room wouldn’t have this fun art piece.
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