When I saw that Tonia Davenport, Acquistions Editor at North Light Craft Books and Create Mixed Media, was looking for artists to feature in The Week aa Art, I almost did a backflip.
I love letters and numbers, especially numbers, and I'm always incorporating them into my work. I dropped her an email with a "sample" number and hoped she'd invite me to submit a week's worth of mixed media digits. She responded quickly, asking me to provide numbers for this week, February 5-11.
I decided to start by making "serendipity squares" for my backgrounds. Here's how I made them. Click on the images to view them at a larger size.
First, I drew a grid for the squares on a piece of Bristol board, then laid down a few diagonal lines of old book text torn into random shapes and distressed around the edges with some Color Box inks.
I tried to vary the sizes and shapes of the text scraps enough that they wouldn't look too uniform but would provide a nice structure for the squares.
Truth is, It nearly broke my hear to tear it up. That's why I took a picture of it before I let her rip.
Then I added scraps of bright yellow construction paper and let the background sheet dry.
Looks like a bit of a mess, no?
I'm always amazed how bad things can look just before they take that turn toward completion. In this case, I just hoped my squares would be colorful but not overpowering for the stars of the show: my numbers.
I love oilboard stencils. I have them in four sizes from 1" to 6". They came from the leftover stock of an old art supply store some friends bought in my hometown several years ago. I love the way they smell and the way they feel in my hand. They are so much cooler than plastic stencils.
I stenciled each number first using white acrylic paint and allowed that layer to dry.
Then I offset the stencil over the first layer and stenciled the number in black acrylic paint to create a little more dimension.
I dragged the edges of the squares with a contrasting stamp pad to give them a finished look.
You can see the whole week of finished numbers at Create Mixed Media.