Hi Everyone. Step by step instructions and videos to paint a delightful design using a mermaid digital stamp and an oyster shell.
Resize Digital Image =15.5cm High x 6.6cm wide.
Shell image square = 20cm High x 2 cm wide.
Print both images – Trace the shell and the mermaid to give the illusion that she is sitting on the shell – ensure that both images fit inside the 20cm square.
Transfer the tracing onto the canvas.
Basecoat No 1
With the Wash Brush, brush mix water and Emperors Gold. Paint the entire surface of the canvas top and sides with the slip slap technique the linedrawing will still show through. Dry. Note - Slip slap is a quick basecoat technique that is basically large crosses.
Basecoat No 2
With the Wash brush, brush mix water and a touch of Ocean Blue and glaze random streaks around the shell lid, lighten if needed with the watery gold. Dry
Mix the watery gold and watery blue together and glaze the entire surface around the shell lid. Add more gold and water if mix is too blue. Dry.
Note - Glazing with watery paint, load the brush then swipe the brush across kitchen roll or a rag to take off the “wetness” on the brush. A glaze is a hint of colour not a puddle of watery paint.
Basecoat No 3
With the Angle brush, brush mix water and Honey Brown and glaze the area under the shell, it will “ground” the shell onto the sea bed. Dry.
Basecoat No 4
With the Wash brush, brush mix Water and Mink Pearl and glaze the shell lid. Dry
With the Angle brush fully loaded in Mink Pearl. Use the width of the brush to outline the edge of shell lid with a wavy stripe that follows the curves. Dry.
Basecoating remaining sections of the design.
These sections may need several coats of paint to achieve an opaque finish, dry well between each layer.
Mix together French Mauve and White Pearl 1:1
Use Round brush, paint the shell cushion.
Mix together French Mauve and Mink Pearl 2:1
Use the Round brush paint the frilly edge of the shell.
Mix together Raw Umber and Mink Pearl 1:1
Use the Angle brush, paint the shell base
Her hair is Honey Brown, using the Round brush paint her hair in strands, copy the digital stamp for general placement.
Paint her skin with Flesh Tone. Using the Angle, Round or Liner depending on size of each area.
Bikini Top and Tail, although this will be Metallic Silver Sage the colour will show clearer when based with one coat of Soft Sage and the one or two coats of Silver Sage. Use a variety of brushes for the different sized areas and dry well between coats.
Using the liner carefully paint the pearl with White Pearl.
Re align the tracing and transfer the eyes, brows, hair details and any details on bikini top and tail that have been covered up with paint.
Now we start floating shade and highlights and the design will start to have some dimension. Shading takes the design back and creates a darker shadow and highlights bring a design forward with a lighter colour.
Load the angle brush with Raw Umber, blend and shade underneath the frilly edge on the shells base.
Using the same brush and colour paint a back to back shading float along the line between the cushion and the frilly shell edge, down one side and then the other.
With the Liner brush mix a little water with Raw Umber. Paint hair strands to give depth and direction. Follow the transferred lines
With the Liner brush carefully paint eyes and line the brows. Be careful these eyes may grow in size it is tempting to try to get these exactly the same size and shape. Dry.
Use the Liner brush and White Pearl paint small comma strokes on bikini top frill, and tail fin. Dry.
With the Stylus and Titanium White, dip and dot to embellish her bikini top, waistband and fin on tail as shown.
Load the Angle brush with a brush mix of French Mauve and Titanium White and float a highlight along the frilly edge on base of shell.
Fully load the Round brush with Titanium White, then wipe most of the paint off. With a very light touch dry brush the top of the shell cushion.
Her tail scales are painted with a cotton bud and White Pearl. Dip and dot and dot in staggered rows. Dry thoroughly.
Load the Angle brush and float shade with a brush mix of Silver Sage and Raw Umber. Shade under the dots on her bikini top, under waistline frill, the bend in her tail where it overlaps and the base of her tail fins. Dry.
With the Liner brush and Titanium White.
Highlight the pearl with a small comma shaped stroke.
With the Stylus highlight her eyes with Titanium White. Imagine each eye is a small clock face and place the dot at approx 5 o’clock and dry thoroughly.
Outline all of the design elements with the Liner brush and inky Zinc. Sign and date your project and dry thoroughly.
Embellish the shell lid with small dots using the Cream Perlen Pen, place dots along each transferred line on the Mink Pearl stripe.
Add the Metal Charm Corners. I preferred the brass coloured corners and I glued them onto the canvas with dots of Perlen Pen and wiped off any seepage with a baby wipe.
Leave to airdry on a flat surface for a couple of days to allow the paint to dry completely and cure. Then seal your project with Americana® Sealer/Finisher.
I look forward to seeing your projects and maybe one of the design team has inspired you to take part in this challenge.
Until next time
For new painters the following technique videos will help you to understand the jargon I use -
Tracing & Transferring – Linerwork – Floating Colour Shading – Chocolate Cake Floating Highlights.
Watch decorative painting videos by Gill on YouTube
© 2014 Gill Hobbs at From Little Acorns
Decorative painting teacher, Cornwall, UK
Created exclusively for Cuddly Buddly