April 29, 2007

Alien Landscape in Acrylics II – The Hills

Filed under: Art and Drawings — sarah @ 11:07 pm

Alien Picture

I decided that some dark low-lying hills would look right with the sky, but I was thinking alien planet by this point and thought that the atmosphere could well be thicker and more like water than air. I began thinking of shallow type, dune-like hills, in black shimmering metal sand. Without air it wouldn’t oxidise would it? Ie it wouldn’t rust and the grains of alien sand would be little dull pieces of metal.

I painted these in a similar way to the sky, except that I used a smaller brush with the bristles all grouped together with a rounded end (officially known as ’rounds’). I also made sure that instead of horizontal lines I made nice shallow swoops, contouring the hills. I used the lighter colours to highlight subtly the dividing lines between one hill and the next, giving depth of field to the picture.

I also made sure that the further-away hills were lighter shades with different colours mixed in; this is the opposite to what you would normally paint. I felt it would create a nice effect and I also added just a touch of a bronze metallic paint, just to give it a slight metallic lustre in the right light. This, of course, is completely lost in the photo!

I painted the furthest-away hill first using :

Mars black 036

Middle grey 064 (Daler-Rowan Series A, Cryla acrylic)

Titanium white 009

Sap green 375

Copper 230 (IMIT)

The middle hill was painted using :

Mars black 036

Lemon yellow 651

Cadmium orange 619

Copper (IMIT) 230

The bottom/foreground hill was painted using :

Mars black 036

Cadmium orange 619

Titanium white 009

Copper (IMIT) 230

Again I left it to dry overnight before starting on the denizens of the picture!

April 22, 2007

Alien Landscape in Acrylics I – The Sky

Filed under: Art and Drawings — sarah @ 3:02 pm

Alien Picture

Sorry about the flash on the photo but it was coming out with the wrong colours without the flash ,and I didn’t want to take it out of the glass protector until I scan it. And then the images will be avaliable over on Point Defect.

I painted this in three sessions, starting with the orange sky/background. I put a generous blob of all the reds, yellows, oranges, whites and a bit of green and black onto my pallete aka a piece of scrap waxy paper or card. I then used a flat square-tipped brush (the official name is apparently a flat brush) from Tesco’s of all places. I really did use only the tiniest amount of green and black.

I then wet the brush and dragged it through the blobs of paint and brushed backwards and forwards on the paper – which is thin mounting card, slightly larger than A4. I dipped the brush back into the paints every now and then, making sure the white caused a streaky effect. Because I am lazy, I don’t tape my paper down, but if you are a proper artist you should use masking tape to tape the paper down, so that it doesn’t move around whilst you paint.

I just paint over my thumb, as I have also discovered that I have to move the piece of paper as soon as I’m finished, otherwise the paint sticks it to the surface I am working on and extracting it again can ruin it.

I waited overnight for it to dry; at this stage I had no idea what I was going to make it, be the sky, or even if it was to be a sky rather than under some fluid or some such. I was quite happy with the dried effect and looked to see which end should be the bottom and which the top, to take advantage of the best ‘cloud patterns’.

Colours used for the sky were:

Cadmium red 503

Cadmium orange 619

Crimson 513

Yellow ochre 663

Lemon yellow 651

Cadmium red deep 504

Cadmium yellow 620

Buff titanium 024

Titanium white 009,

Mars black 036, Sap green 375

(all Daler-Rowney System 3 acrylics)

April 15, 2007

Aliens and Spaceships

Filed under: Events,Kids Projects,Science and Art — sarah @ 7:24 pm

On Space Camp with the Cubs we made aliens out of New Clay, lolly sticks, goggly eyes and pipe cleaner (renamed as modelling straws or something) and anything else we had lying about.

The kids were pretty much let loose with the stuff, which they squidged into a myriad of shapes. Numbers of goggly eyes varied drastically and the pipe cleaners made great tenticles or hair!

Their creations, some of which were very imaginative, were left to air dry on a table for the rest of the weekend.


Of course the extraterrestrials needed some sort of transport, so we got the children to make spaceships out of bits of rubbish. There were old tins – with no sharp edges of course – bits of netting bags, cardboard and plastic cones from the middle of the wool cones for knitting machines, odd cut offs of wire and battery casings.

With some aluminium foil and a lot of PVA glue and brown parcel tape, they fashioned their vehicles. The variety of designs was amazing, some functional and others more ‘alien’ to our earthling eyes. 🙂

Space ships

These were both fun projects suitable for the range of abilities we had present.

April 8, 2007

Centenary Trees

Filed under: Kids Projects,Paper Craft — sarah @ 8:44 pm

Century Tree again

As part of the Scouts’ Centenary celebration, the Beavers made a centenary tree together. First of all we got some large pieces of green sugar paper (A3 sort of size) and blu-tacked them to the wall to be the trunk of the tree.

We then got the children to draw around their hands on some ordinary white paper. They then cut the hand shapes out carefully using those little safety scissors with some assistance. They then wrote the names of family members down the fingers of the hands and decorated them with glitter, felt-tip pens and stickers.  We then stuck the hands onto the tree trunk as leaves.

The kids loved this one, though I think that because our colony is very small there were not really enough leaves!

Beaver hands

April 1, 2007

Flower Monitor Decoration

Filed under: Polymer Clay,Science and Art — sarah @ 8:32 pm

I made this monitor decoration for my mum. I used strange almost fluorescent-coloured polymer clay, specifically fimo soft. I used blue for the base, pink for the flower and yellow for the middle. Also needed was a green matchstick for the stem and a sticky pad to turn it into a monitor decoration!


I shaped the blue fimo into a cone with the top slightly flattened, about 1.5cm in diameter at the base. The pink fimo I rolled into a sphere and then flattened it into a rough rose petal shape. The yellow fimo I rolled into a short fat sausage shape with very rounded ends.


I then wrapped the yellow sausage in the pink petal shape to create a flower that looked a bit like a lily.


I then pushed the green matchstick into the bottom of the flower and rolled the area to push the fimo in firmly and neatly around the stick.


I then punched the other end of the matchstick into the blue cone.


I then baked it in a pre-heated over at 130 degrees C for 1/2 hr (30 minutes). Once it had cooled, I pulled the stick out of the blue cone base and then added a bit of glue (UHU) on the stick and poked it back in the whole. This is necessary as the stick would eventually work itself loose, otherwise if it puts up a fight don’t worry about it!

Once the glue had dried I put a little two-sided sticky pad on the bottom so that it can be stuck to the computer monitor!