Friday, March 6, 2015

C'est La Vie! Mixed Media Canvas

There's just something about Chat Noir, everyone seems to love him.  He is the original "cool cat".  Mefiant! He has a mysterious air about him.  When I saw that Chat Noir was available as part of SVG Cuts' Maple Manor cutting files, I could not resist adding him to my collection.  Although he is part of a Halloween themed set, I could foresee dozens of uses in craft projects for him. For a long time I had wanted to do a small mixed media canvas to replace a mass market department store plaque that now hangs in our foyer. Chat Noir would be perfect. The canvas would be centered around the cat and build from there.  The background should have texture, so I mixed molding paste with light blue acrylic paint. I added a lot of distress ink to give the elements in the piece an aged appearance.    I found some free domain music by Mozart and printed it on parchment paper, tore off pieces and distressed them before gluing them to the canvas.

 I'm still working on the piece but I wanted to share what I have so far. I used an unfinished Chat Noir to mask off the portion of the canvas where the cat will eventually reside.  The actual cat will be slightly smaller and have his whiskers added.

C'est La Vie mixed media canvas. Work in progress.

Here's the finished canvas.  I coated the piece in Mod Podge, except the butterfly and the metal accents.  When the Mod Podge had dried, I painted the cat and the Eiffel Tower with black acrylic paint to give the pieces added dimension.

Finished Canvas

Directions for C'est La Vie Canvas:

Canvas-5x7 inch, primed with gesso
SVG Cuts Maple Manor cutting file-Chat Noir image
Cricut French Manor cartridge-Eiffel Tower and oval tag
Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Inks- Tea Dye and Vintage Photo
Recollections Butterfly-light blue
Self adhesive pearls
Martha Stewart Fleur de Lys and Leaf paper punches
Turquoise hand made paper-available by single sheet at Michaels
Piece of metal ribbon- large enough for the cat to sit on. Available at Hobby Lobby
Liquitex light blue and black acrylic paint
Golden Molding Paste
Palette knife- for mixing the paint and molding paste and spreading it on the canvas.
Princeton Catalyst Wedge W-02- for adding texture to the paint mixture
Assorted paper flowers
Sheet Music
French Script Stamp
Tim Holtz Ideology Clock Faces and Gears
Spare Parts Round Antique Brads
Mod Podge
Krylon UV Sealant spray
Small paint brush
Ranger Perfect Pearls Mist-Silver
Black, yellow, dark grey, peach, olive green and light grey card stock
Small Ceramic tile

1.  Mix the paint and the molding paste together with a palette, on a small ceramic tile.  Spread the mixture evenly over a 5x7 pre-primed canvas.

2.  Use the Catalyst Wedge to make waves over the surface of the canvas. Turn the canvas to the right and make waves in the opposite direction.  Let the paint dry thoroughly. Then apply the Tea Dye distress ink lightly over the surface of the canvas. Just enough ink to slightly age the canvas.

3.  Ink the French Script stamp with the Vintage Photo distress ink and place on the canvas starting at the top and working toward the bottom of the canvas. Re-ink the stamp before stamping the next area.  Press the canvas down on top of the stamp to make sure that the ink adheres to the surface. Let the ink dry before proceeding to the next step.

4.  Cut the Eiffel tower at 6 inches, using the dark grey card stock, with the French Manor cartridge. Cut the flourish out of peach card stock and cut Tag 1 out of the light grey card stock.  Apply Vintage Photo distress ink to the edges of the tag and the flourish.

5.  Tear pieces off the the sheet music and distress them with Vintage Photo distress ink.  Brush Mod Podge over the back of the torn sheet music pieces and apply to the right side of the canvas.  Apply Mod Podge to the back of the Eiffel Tower and adhere over the sheet music. Attach the flourish to the tower using Mod Podge.  Attach a small pearl to each end of the flourish. Paint the Eiffel Tower with black acrylic paint and let it dry.  Spray silver Perfect Pearls mist on a silicone craft mat. Dip a paint brush in the Perfect Pearls and dab randomly over the Eiffel Tower to create a mottled effect. Let it dry.

6.  Write C'est la vie! by hand on the tag, distress the edges of the tag with distress ink and attach a small brad in the top of the tag.  Place a foam dot on the back of the tag a attach to the center of the Eiffel Tower.

7.  Glue a pale yellow paper flower over the flourish (on the Eiffel Tower).  Punch two leaves with the paper punch out of olive green card stock and glue under the edges of the flower.  Punch two Fleur de Lys out of the turquoise hand made paper using the paper punch.  Distress the edges of the Fleur de Lys and attach three small pearls to the ends and one in the center.

8.  Glue a small brad to the center of the Tim Holtz Ideaology Clock Face. Glue a small pearl to the center of the brad.  Glue the clock face to the upper right edge of the canvas, over the sheet music.  Attach a foam dot to the back of the butterfly and glue to the bottom edge of the clock face.

9.  Glue one large rose and two small ones to the upper left edge of the canvas. Punch leaves out of olive green card stock and glue under the edges of the flowers.

10.  Glue the piece of metal ribbon to the lower left edge of the canvas. Glue a medium size gear on the right side of the ribbon and glue a metal brad in the center of the gear and glue a small pearl in the center of the brad.

11.  Cut Chat Noir at approximately 7 inches in height, using SVG Cuts Maple Manor cut files.  Cut the cat and the cat's base with the whiskers out of black card stock. Glue Chat Noir on the left edge of the canvas, sitting on top of the metal ribbon.  The cat's tail should extend below the lower edge of the canvas and rest on the lower edge of the metal ribbon.  Carefully paint the cat with black acrylic paint, let the paint dry and apply another coat of paint.

12.  Let the entire canvas dry overnight and then spray with Krylon UV Sealant.