Friday, March 29, 2013

Tutorial Try-Out: Abstracted flowers

The lovely Kristin Dudish has been hosting a weekly series called Tutorial Try-Outs"
You know all those tutorials you come across and bookmark “for later” and never get around to trying?  Kristin is committed to trying one new technique per week and inviting others to play along.

This week’s challenge is Carla Sonheim’s abstracted flower tutorial. The directions are very straightforward and easy to follow and I had no trouble achieving results similar to Carla’s.  But that’s the problem – they look too much like Carla
I want them to look like me! 
(I painted on one big sheet of paper, then cut it into four postcards, and tried to add a color wash to the top postcard but it just smeared all the pencil marks and made a mess)
I often feel like my brain is too literal – I can’t figure out a way to do this without actually doing this.  While I ponder that conundrum, I have at least taken the step of cutting apart my work and gluing it back together in layers.
 I also took a few different hand-carved stamps and using grey and black ink, stamped some flowery shapes on top.

The technique was really fun, even if I'm not wild about my results.
I may have to mess around with this one some more and see where it takes me.
Have any of you tried this one yet?
If you do, be sure to hop over to Kristin's blog to link your work and check out the cool thing Kristin did with her flowers!


  1. always good to make it your own. what a good idea to actually DO all those ideas we read about and file away.

  2. Thanks for introducing me to this great blog and challenge.
    I have been unhappy about pencil smearing, and I read that the Derwent Inktense Outliner is perfect in preventing smears. I'm looking forward to trying one out.

  3. I have been 'copying' artists I admire for years, and it takes many 'copies' before I make it my own. But I do. You will make it your own. And you have a strong distinctive look, and I know this because I always know when I get something of yours and I really love it. So I know that your distinctive feel will enter its way into one of your 'copies' and you will leave Carla's work to Carla, with a kiss. And she will applaud you. It is what we artists do, and it is a great thing! To love each other's talent enough to teach, learn and reach!

  4. That was my problem I think, the first time I did them. They felt too Carla and not enough me. This time I enjoyed playing a lot more. Love the way you used stamps on yours!

  5. I think they might not look like you because you are not exactly what i'd call "a flower person". I could see you using this technique in a more completely abstract way--like making random blotches and gesso squiggles, but not in any particular shape. (butterflies! girls! flowers! ha!)

  6. Oooooh - I love the way you added hand carved stamps - What a great idea! I think by cutting them up you definitely achieved a very cool "Karen-feel" :)
    (Your choice of colors is also very "Karen"!)

    I am SO glad you played along - it is so much fun to see how different artists all use the same tutorial in different ways!


  7. I really like the addition of your hand carved stamps. That made it so much more YOU......yum yum. Having some pie tomorrow? xox

  8. You make me feel less guilty for not achieving Carla's look in my first attempt. The whole point for any teacher is to give their students wings, and it's good to see how different people do use the technique to make something that is distinctively themselves.
    Cutting up and stamping were such too, Karenish, ideas. I'll bear that in mind next time I'm unhappy about my result.
    I'm looking forward to seeing what you do with the PVA glue!

  9. Such a great idea from Kristin. I have a folder full of "art ideas" I never get to. I like where you took Carla's tutorial. The end result is bright, fun, and beautifully textured. xx