Mysteries Hidden: Creating Texture w/Fiber Paste & Gel Medium

Imagine my surprise this morning when I found that I'd recorded the early phases of creating the pages that I posted yesterday. The video files were in the wrong folder on my hard drive - a folder designated for videos that had already been edited and finished and uploaded and all of that. Video files are ginormous so I try not to leave them hanging about unused! 

This is inherently one of those i-wonder-what-would-happen-if pages, an experiment to create texture using the screening material that I found in our garage. Walking through the aisles of your neighborhood home improvement store, or in the depths of your garage, you'll find a surprising assortment of tools & fodder for mixed media experimentation. Go with an open mind. 

Anyhow, I digress. I edited the video and it's not the full page start to finish {which would have been cool because it turned out really VIVID} but you can get a feel for creating texture with gel medium or fiber paste. Then you can just paint on top with fingers or a brush. 

The majority of the page is in Golden Heavy Body Acrylics, plus some High Flow Acrylics plus the regular suspects--- paper, ink, pencil, crayon, Neocolors, charcoal, markers, etc. I also used stickers that I made at MOO from my art {i.e. the bubbles on the top right}. PS. To apply paint over the gel/fiber paste, a brush worked better than fingers because it was able to get into the nooks of the texture.

One of my favorite things about acrylics is that they are forgiving. I can get really immersed in a page and keep working it.  I think the people on these pages are all looking at each other. But then there are masks, kind of voodoo spooky stuff, like the invisible costumes that people don on social media. The Mary Poppins illusion, practically perfect in every way. It does not help us become more real if we are surrounded by fakery. 

Art journal page, altered book, artwork by Tammy Garcia.

Art journal page, altered book, artwork by Tammy Garcia.

Humble page beginnings. Looks kind of like skeletons and mermaids. Where could this go? 

Humble page beginnings. Looks kind of like skeletons and mermaids. Where could this go? 

3x5" index card, ink & gel medium, artwork by Tammy Garcia.
3x5" index card, acrylics & ink & gel medium, artwork by Tammy Garcia.
3x5" index card, ink, acrylics & fiber paste, artwork by Tammy Garcia.

The aluminum mesh that I used to create the texture on these art journal pages and index cards is called "Gutter Guard" and it's sold at Home Depot in a small roll that you can cut with tin snips {which look like pruning sheers but cut metal}, less than $10 USD for more than you'll need. It looks like this. You could use any kind of metal mesh that can be held flush against your journal page. This looks good too, for more of a gridded look. I liked the gutter material because of the diagonal/diamond shape. Rinse the metal gutter stuff before the gel/fiber paste dries with warm water and Dawn in an old bucket.

You can use a sturdy stencil, plastic template, alphabet stencils, etc. to make raised texture. 

3x5" index cards, gel medium, acrylics & inks, artwork by Tammy Garcia.

More pix of these pages in Mysteries Hidden.