Monday, July 30, 2012

Mmmm Peaches!

Last week I was able to pick some fresh peaches from my friend Annette's backyard.  I knew I wanted to do something fun with them, so on Friday my boyfriend and I made a make shift "dump cake."  Normally with a dump cake you simply dump a can of pie filling into a cake pan, then dump a dry yellow cake mix on top of that, cover it in butter and bake!  Super easy and super yummy!

However, we didn't have the right ingredients to make a traditional pie filling with the peaches so we got creative!  We mixed the freshly cut and pitted peach slices with a little bit of brown sugar and cinnamon.  Plus we added a little bit of citrus juice to keep the peaches from going brown.  We had a lime on hand, so we used that and it worked just fine, but I think I would recommend using lemon.

Next, we put the peach mix into the bottom of our pan (we only had enough to do half the size of what a full dump cake would normally be).  Then we added more brown sugar and drizzled it with about 2 tbsp. of melted butter.

Next came the normal steps of adding the dry cake mix and the pats of butter, which will form the crust.

And VOILA! It was so delicious! The peach "filling" turned out to be really soupy from all the water that baked out of the fruit.

This gave us a new idea... after we ate the crust (couldn't let that yummy goodness go to waste!) and some of the fruit, we added the other half of our cake mix and actually mixed it into the fruit this time. After we baked it, it turned out to be a sort of cake like brownie consistency.  It wasn't exactly pretty but it sure was tasty!

We plan to try and perfect this new idea, so hopefully there will be a sequel to this post in the future!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

A Girl and Her Glue: Part 2

Well as promised here is my second pinterest project that envolves making designs with glue! I think this one turned out a lot better than the first one, yay!

Here is the original pin that I recreated and added to:

And this is how my version turned out:

When I saw it with just the glue and no color at all, I was really discouraged with it, but the paint made all the difference and now I LOVE it!

Here's all that you will need:

  • Canvas
  • Liquid glue of any kind (again I used tacky glue)
  • Paint and brush
  • Optional: a design of some sort that you want to reproduce
If you want to know an easy way to transfer a printed design onto your canvas check out this post, which actually uses pictures from when I was doing this same project.

Once you have your design drawn or transfered onto your canvas, its time for glue!  Of course, if you want to skip the drawing and go straight for the glue, have at it! There is no wrong way to go about this.

However, after attempting this particular design I found that it is best to go for something with a lot less detail because as the glue dries and settles on the canvas it will spread out and parts of my design kind of became big blobs.  This ended up being okay, but I want to avoid this in the future.  I also noticed this as I was putting the glue on and ended up altering and simplifying the design a lot while I was glueing.

After the glue has completely dried, paint the entire canvas straight over the glue.  The glue will automatically make the paint look different on your design because of the different textures.  If you want, this can be your final step.  I think it looks really cute, but I was feeling adventurous and wanted to add more!

I blended in some light blue strips into my background color to give it more texture.  I love how this turned out on the canvas, but I didn't like how the stripes turned out on the tree.... So I took it yet another step further.

I painted over just the glue in a pearl colored metallic paint, and I love how it gave it a gentle silver look.

Hope you all have fun using glue in this excitingly creative way!

A Girl And Her Glue: Part 1

Lately I have seem several art projects on Pinterest that involve glue.  They all looked so cute and easy, so I had to give them a try myself!  Here is the first of two glue projects I have tried:

This is the original pin that I attempted to re-create:

And here is how my version turned out:

I was not sure I liked it at first but it has really started to grow on me and now I am thinking about trying out a new design.

You will need:
  • Liquid glue (I used tacky glue, but I'm sure even white school glue would work)
  • A glue stick
  • Cardboard or some other surface (I used the bottom of an empty case of ramen noodles)
  • pen/marker
  • Paint (black is what I would recommend after trying this out) and brush
  • Paper towel
  • Foil

First draw out a design on your cardboard.  I had to end up glueing a piece of paper over mine cause I messed up my drawing so many times.  But of course you can skip this step and go straight for the glue if you are confident in your free handing skills.

Next, cover your design in your liquid glue.  There is no need to be completely committed to your outlines, as you can see toward the top of my design I altered it a little as I was drawing with the glue.  Make sure that your glue is nice and thick so that it will still be prominent once you put the foil over the top of it.

Then, you have to wait for the glue to dry... and let me tell you it is just like watching a pot boil.  I ended up having to leave mine to dry over night for all of the glue to go clear.

Once it is dry, cover your whole surface with your glue stick and place your foil on top.  I found out the hard way that it is best to rest it on top and mold it around your design instead of laying it taunt and then trying to get it to fit around your glue.

Also, its best for your piece of foil to be larger than your cardboard so that you can fold over the sides and get a good finished look on the edges.

Finally, this was the part I had the hardest time with, painting it.  I found after a few times of messing it up, that it was best to add just a couple drops of water to your paint so its a bit runny.  Then paint one coat over the whole thing and let it sit a couple mins, enough time for some paint to dry but for it to still be very tacking.  Then wipe up the excess paint with a paper towel.  The paint should for the most part stay around the edges and in the creases of your design, otherwise letting the foil show through.

I hope this project inspires you to go get your glue on!  In the next couple days I will be posting another cool glue project to try as well.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Fun with Ceramics!

A couple weeks ago I helped out with a kid's academic camp here at the university I attend.  On that day they were going over to do some ceramics with one of our art professors, and I got to play around with it too!  I have always wanted to take Ceramics but it has never really fit in my schedule or been something I needed credits from, so this was perfect!

We made what the professor called, "pinch pots."  We started with a ball of clay about the size of a small fist, poked a hole in the center with our fingers and then literally pinched the sides until they were in the shape we wanted.

I was pleased with the shape that mine ended up being, but I thought it was just to plain.  So, I molded some petals and made a flower that I attached to the side.  And then I finished it off by carving my first initial into the bottom on the inside.

Then on Tuesday we went back to the ceramics studio to glaze our creations after they had dried and been fired.  I choose "neon green" for the bulk of my pot.  I was going to try to not get any green on my flower and glaze it a different color, but getting in between the crevices was impossible.  So the whole thing ended up green, but then I got the idea to just glaze another color ("cantaloupe") over the green on the petals.

And I love how it turned out!  Gotta love happy accidents!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Super Easy Image Transfer Method

If you are like me, you love all the cute paintings and designs you see on the web but they never seem to turn out the way you imagined them too.  Or you might just not be that confident in your drawing ability.  Well then this is definitely for you!

Here is an easy way to transfer an image you print from your computer onto pretty much any surface.

All you need is: a sharpened pencil, scissors, tape, and your computer image.

First, trace over the print image with your pencil.  The more completely you cover the black lines, the better the transfer will work.

Then, tape your image face down onto whatever surface you want to transfer it to (I am using a canvas board).  I think that it is best to cut out your image so you can see exactly where it is going on your surface, but that step is optional.

Now, trace over your image again from the back side.  The pressure from this second tracing will transfer the pencil markings from the first onto your surface.

After you take the paper off, you may still need to go back and darken/fill in some of the lines.  This is also a great time to add onto your image and make it your own.  In the example above I added all of the dots along the truck and leaves of the tree.  So this is also a great way to get a basic shape on canvas to work and create from.

NOTE: You can also do this transfer in reverse, by tracing over the back first and the front second, if you do not want it to be mirror image.

I hope you can you this tip, enjoy!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Lucky To Be In Love!

A while back I saw this project on Pinterest and I finally got to try it for myself!  The original tutorial used white paint and so do a couple others I've seen, so I wanted to see what using a more dramatic color would be like.  I really love how it turned out, and it was really easy, so I thought I would would share!  This is a mixture of the original instructions and some of my own tips from my experimentation.

What you will need:
  • A cheap print of a painting (I picked mine up at Dollar Tree)
  • Letter stickers
  • Paint in the color of your choice (I picked metallic gold to be bold, but you could use white or black to be more simple if you want.)
  • Paint brush
My print came in a frame, so the first thing I had to do was take out the actual picture.  This was way easier said than done because what I didn't notice in store was that the frame was glued to the cardboard to prevent it from being opened.  But never fear! I was able to cut through the glue with a pair of scissors and kept the frame in tact enough to reuse when I was finished.

Next, I simply applied my stickers.  I tried using a straight edge to line them up, but it ended up being easier to just eye ball it.  I think they turned out fairly straight.

Then I added the paint right over the stickers.  The print I was working with was kind of like magazine paper so it was hard to get the paint to cover at first, but two thick coats did the trick.  This made the paper wrinkle a bit, so if you can I recommend looking for something on a better material, like canvas.

Once it was completely covered came the hardest part of the project . . . waiting!  I was so excited to see the finished product it was very difficult to wait to peel off the stickers.  I got a little over zealous and tried peeling them early, and it didn't work at all.  The paint must be completely dry before you take off the letters, or you will mess up the outline of the text.

Finally, I was able to carefully peel off my letters.  Again, for this step as well, it would be more beneficial to have better print material.  Because of the glossy finish on the paper, the paint still had a tendency to peel up with the stickers but I think they still came out okay.  Then I just put it back into the frame the print came in. Viola!