I have always wanted to elevate and do something different with my photos. I have thousands of photos, but I need to do something more with them. Every avenue I thought of was expensive. Printing in quality is expensive, art materials cost an arm and a leg and I don’t have a place to hang them. I have been given many talents, sadly painting and drawing was not one of them, not that is any cheaper either : (
I’m not strong at Photoshop but I was plugging different things into it, not reaching the A-ha moment I was wanting and I was a little deflated. It wasn’t until I had a chat with my other creative gal pal that I started thinking outside of the box. We chatted, we threw ideas and we excited our creative juices (Griselle, haay girl haaay!) An idea was born!
I wanted to make a large painting/mural of photo I had in mind. An impromptu photoshoot a while back with my Mae in the garden, I loved this shoot with her. Admittedly, this photo is about 2 years old. I often revisit old photos. I decided on a canvas & paint swatches (inspired by @Josielewisart)
Here is the beginning and process of my new master piece, which sure is the labor of love because it is certainly not an instant gratification kind of piece. It needs patience. A. lot. of. it.
With my chosen photo I added stained glass filter on PS. I printed it on photo paper 8 x 10 at Walgreens and wanted to use it as my template, just like a cross stitch pattern. Then to execute it physically from the photo, it had me at a screeching halt- already! The photo seem to have 100 colors. I would need to move into Home Depot just to match them all. Griselle suggested I transform it to an actual cross stitch pattern – duhhh, hello? Yes, I was so stuck in the quicksand of my thoughts I wasn’t thinking smartly. I have done a ton of cross stitch in my time, I wanted it to look like cross stitch so why not make a cross stitch pattern? lol… Since Mae is on summer vacation I have roped her into the making of this project.
Pixelstitch MADE MY LIFE EASY! Upload the photo, the dimension you want to make and how many colors you want to use. The more colors the more details/shading you will see, but the more color you use the more organized you have to be. I went with 15 colors to simplify things a little. The app even gives you the color suggestions (with thread color) which I changed up a little. I decided to use a .5 inch hexagon hand punch from Sizzix (sadly, it’s discontinued) that I had in my craft room. My canvas is 48 x 60 inches, It’s big. I have no room to work on it, nor hang it when it’s complete in my home. That’s not the point, the point is I want to make it. So I’ll make it. I rented a 10 x 10 ft storage space to work on this. I dedicate at least 1 hour a day. One row takes an hour and has 112 rows. My pattern indicates a little over 10, 000 pieces. Shit.
All my paint swatches are from Behr Paints. I should contact them I think. I wonder if they hate artists using their samples? Maybe they have an art department? I’ll report back!
I took the coded pattern from Pixelstitch and enlarged it enough to be able to read easily. I paired my new colors with the existing codes in the pattern.
The canvas is painted with a rose gold metallic paint. I planned to have the metallic paint show through the gaps of the hexagon like the grout of a mosaic piece.
Finding the center of the printed pattern and the canvas is the next important thing. I measured the canvas and used push pins and yarn to mark my center.
I have to work row by row with a yardstick as a guide to keep it straight.
My choice of glue is Modge Podge Matte. I dot each hexagon with a dab of glue with a cue-tip. Then one by one you glue according to the pattern. You can not rush, and I don’t suggest drinking alcohol as you work here. WE NEED STRAIGHT LINES!
As you can see here, I’m half way. I started this on May 21, 2020. I’m working at a good pace, and need to keep at it…….you’ll see the finished product here soon!! Stay tuned : )
Much love, A