Thursday, August 26, 2010

Kitchen Artwork

Do you guys remember the kitchen towel holder that I just made? And do you remember how I had no idea what to do with the area above the knobs? Well, you guys gave me some GREAT suggestions and I had an idea of what I was going to do, until I got a random memory of how I wanted to use artichokes in the kitchen. Dilemma solved!...Well, sort of. I didn't want to go searching for the perfect artichoke print, which meant I would have to paint my own, and I haven't painted in a really long time (think last Christmas!), which meant super duper rusty painting skills...but alas, I bit the bullet and went to Michael's for some canvas. I bought a 3-pack of 11x14 canvases and used a coupon, so it came out to somewhere around $3 total.

Are you guys ready for blogland's worst tutorial ever? Sorry, but when I paint I get in a zone and kinda sorta forget to take pictures =)

So once the little guy was down for his nap, I brought out my good ol' paint supplies and painted my canvas white. Then I mixed what was supposed to be a lime green (according to the bottle, but it so wasn't the color I was expecting!) and just a smidgen of black.


TIP: It only takes a teeny tiny itty bitty amount of black to darken something and a lot of white to lighten something.

I didn't have an actual artichoke in front of me so I found an artichoke painting online and used it as a reference (is that like stealing??). I then drew an artichoke on my canvas with pencil and roughly filled in the spaces. I left some white around the edges so that it didn't all blend together.


Next, I mixed in a little bit more black and did some shading.


This is the point in my paintings where I usually think it looks so ugly and there is no way to turn it around and then I have to give myself a little pep talk and try and convince myself that it will get better.
So after my convo with myself, I took some black to do some more shading, and I also added a little bit of red on random spots.

TIP: Water is your best friend if you are using acrylics! If you get too much paint on your canvas, you can easily take some off or blend it if you add water. Sometimes I'll even dip my finger in water instead of using a brush.


It was looking a wee bit bright and the lines were too harsh for me at this point so I did a very light white wash over the entire artichoke and also added some Minwax Dark Walnut  to age the painting.


But I really didn't like how muddy the stain looked, so I went back and did another white wash over the entire piece, which gave it some dimension.


The last thing I did was paint some white on some areas that would naturally be highlighted.


At this point, I called it a day because it was late and I was tired of painting, but I kind of wish I spent more time on it. Oh well!

I felt like it still needed a little somethin' somethin' so I printed the word 'Artichoke', with a little border, out to attach to the top.

So, back to the kitchen towel holder. I didn't want to secure it directly to the front because I was afraid it might take some of the stain off the door if I ever removed it, so I ended up attaching a floor tack to the front and hanging it with twine.

Ready for the final product?


Please excuse the blurriness.


I wanted to add a little bit more interest to the  'Artichoke' label, so I added a copper brad in each corner.


And a closeup.


My kitchen towels are green and I think they will look great with this!






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22 comments:

Lois@frugaldecormom said...

Wow! That is so cute. Wish that I could paint. Maybe I'll have to try my hand at it and see what happens!

Sabrina said...

I love this!!! I always need a reference point when I paint too, but your results are much better than I usually get!! This is the first time I've visited but you have a new fan!! I really love your banner as well!!

Sabrina

PS It's amazing what you can get done during a nap!! You just never know how long the nap is going to be though!!!

Restyled Vintage said...

That is beautiful, what a talented artist you are!
xx Karen

Creative Ambitions said...

Ali... it looks great! Good job!

AM from White House, Black Shutters said...

You are an amazing painter! This post had me yearning for the days of high school art, the last time I picked up a brush. Great job, I love it.

I'm all for working during naptime, I don't think I'd have a blog or functioning house if it weren't for naptime! New follower, glad I found your blog. :)

-Ann Marie

Nikki said...

This is beautiful!

kelly said...

it looks great, very creative and you did a great job painting!

Courtney ~ French Country Cottage said...

Great painting! You are really talented! I love the ikea door headboard too~ I was just at Ikea and spent sooo much time walking around just trying to find my way out! It's like a maze! They do have a lot of great stuff though. Thanks for stopping by my blog too! :)

Nita {ModVintageLife} said...

How lovely. Perfect for a kitchen.

Sonya@Beyond the Screen Door said...

This is stunning! What a talented lady you are!

pogonip said...

Wow! Didn't take long for those rusty painting skills to sharpen right up. Your artichoke is fabulous!

Ellen said...

What a talent you have....smiles.

The Design Confidential said...

this is so amazing! oh how i love artichoke decor! i think i may give one a try myself...no guarantees it will look good, but half the fun's in tryin i spose!

mario said...

WOW.. now THAT is some SERIOUS talent! I wish I could paint like that. That is amaaaazing. I haven't been through your site yet, but I'm anxious to see more of your work.
Thanks for stopping by today as well.
Lisa

nancycreative said...

I love your artichoke artwork! You are very talented!

alice said...

Ali,
That is so adorable! Great job!! I am now following you!
smiles, alice

Kim said...

It's fabulous! You are so talented. I never would have attempted this. I hope you'll show us more of your artwork.

decdiva1 said...

absolutely beautiful! found this at under the table and dreaming link party!

Tricia - A Rosy Note said...

What do you mean your painting skills are "rusty"? That looks great! :)

Classy Clutter said...

Found you on All Things Related Link Party! This is GORGEOUS!!! I love it! I was just working on my kitchen today! Love the color and everything!!


stop by for a visit! I'm your newest follower!


Mallory @
www.classyclutter.blogspot.com

Marianne@Songbird said...

I so admire anybody who can paint! It looks great. Each step I thought wow, that looks wonderful, and then you added another step and made it even better.
In awe of your painting skills!

La Maison Reid said...

I absolutely loved seeing your process of painting and watching it evolve and seeing the artichoke come alive. Looking at your post makes me think I might actually be able to do something like this someday. I really love that you got this idea for your towel rack and really made it YOURS. Turned out so cute. Be proud!
xo
Nancy

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