Friday, July 16, 2010

A 4x4 view of the Ocean

I joined a extremely fun 4x4 blank canvas challenge/swap created by our hostess Kristy who even provided the canvas for us! It has been a long while since I participated in such a creative challenge.

As a group we selected the theme. But I must say for me the effects of British Petroleum's uncapped oil well continuing to cause major effects to our ocean's water made a major difference in my thoughts and feelings about this topic as time went on. I am glad I finished mine several weeks ago.

Below are the instruction we were given and a description of what I did for each section. Each canvas I created has it's own distinctive character. This one is for Renu who is the next player to complete the challenge.

Theme: The Ocean
First layer: COLOR
Squirt, smoosh, spritz – get that colour on however you like! Think only of the colour – no planning of future layers allowed at this point.
Each of your canvases may look different at this stage – that is fine.
If you want to add texture i.e. gesso, tissue, glue to the colour – add away!
  • I first added gesso to the canvas stamped into the goo to achieve some texture. Here you can see some stamp circles in the sand on ocean's bottom. I have some new acrylic paints that I wanted to mix into additional colors. If you look at the water you notice green, reds and other the time I thought I would make a tradition collage.

Second layer: PATTERN
Stamped, printed, found: still not thinking too much about the outcome. Just follow your instincts!

  • While I had already covered this step by stamping in the gesso I also stamp the base seaweed and starfish.

These can be digital or rubber. Colour them and collage them on.

  • I prepare the fish to be a focal image by stamp on paper and coloring.

Fourth layer: TEXT – pop some in there somewhere.

  • I tried handwriting on the canvas but that was not easy so I resorted to typed text letters.

Fourth layer: DOODLING
pens, markers, Paint markers – any media that makes doodling on your work possible.

  • I wanted more depth and feeling of movement to achieve a sense of water so I doodled away not really knowing how to create the look I wanted. Finally, I simply went for playing and giggling until the canvas was filled. I glued on the fish, stamped air bubbles and added glossy accents to them and finally glued on the title.

TAA DAA: You have created a MASTERPIECE! (5 actually!)

  • Many thanks to Kristy for guiding us with a winning recipe!!!


  1. Congrats on a wonderful outcome. So many little differences in your work. I keep seeing more as I look...

  2. OMG, this is fantastic. I just love it, and your doodling is waaay perfect!!

  3. love the end result, and thanks for sharing the process. I thought the doodling was stitching. Great Canvas.

  4. Wow!!! Can't believe I missed this swap. Your canvas is fantastic Jan!

  5. This is fantastic Jan. What fun to read all the steps in the journey to your beautiful finished canvas. I loved reading that you giggled your way through part of this creative exercise.

  6. This is so beautiful! The fact that you described your creative process makes all the more special. I absolutely love the outcome. How I would love to have the patience to do such a project. Thank you for sharing it.

  7. Very nice. Thanks for sharing. Come visit

  8. Wow Jan, this is amazing, love the effects you have created with the stamping and the doodling.


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