“Green” Art

This post is alternatively titled: Earth Friendly Studio Practices. A passion of mine!

I've learned to LOVE junk mail, yep, that’s right….the old fashioned snail mail junk mail!  I take out my gesso, slop it on the front and pack of postcards and all sorts of stiffer junk, and then proceed to paint. (I also found a fab old 1970s dictionary at GoodWill which I love to pull pages from and paint. Even did some fun monotype printing on top of it.]  Before I turned to junk mail, I had experimented on grocery bags, really love kraft paper, that brown yummy stuff.  And then I graduated to cardboard, and cereal boxes.  Now my front door often has “gifts” from kind neighbors who know I’m the eccentric artist in #17, who loves to paint on recycled supports.

upcycling bits of everything for mixed media art

Of late I have fallen in love with cardboard as my painting support.  I’ve become quite the conossieur of cardboard…if you wish to try it yourself, I suggest finding some appliance cardboard as it’s far superior in strength, and “clean”ness – that is, it is not fuzzy and pulpy. And for smaller works, wine boxes are quite sturdy and clean. Enjoy!
PROCESS for preparing cardboard to be painted on:After an inspiring consultation with a technical expert at Golden Paint Company, I now prepare my heavy-duty cardboard (found at a local furniture company) as follows:
  • I cut to my sizes.
  • Seal with gel medium, front, back and sides
  • Coat with gesso, (2-3 layers) and add any texture at this time as well.
  • Start painting!
  • I have been assured that the prep I put into my favored cardboard will last a very very long time.
I also have removed cobalts and cadmiums from my palette, and check thoroughly that all my pigments and supplies are rated non-toxic before purchasing.  No sprays!  May my art journey be gentle and healing to our beloved Earth home.

Blessings and Paint On! ~Joanie

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