Cheap and Effective Texture Medium

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Texture 9

As I experiment more with mixed media, I have been wanting to add some additional texture to my art.  (Note: Using the word “art” is undoubtedly an insult to all artists everywhere!) Yes, I could have purchased some commercial texture paste and a palette knife.Texture 10

But why go with professional tools when I can get a similar effect with the cheap stuff? After all, I’m a crapsman, right? I first tried to make my own, following this recipe from Such a Pretty Mess: http://gabriellepollacco.blogspot.com/2012/08/making-my-own-texture-paste-fun-with.html. Somehow, it just didn’t work for me.

Then I went to the hardware store and bought some spackling compound and a putty knife. Cheap, cheap! I easily used the putty knife to scrape the spackling over a stencil onto my canvas.

A bonus is that the spackling mixture goes on pink, so it’s easily seen as it’s applied. Over a short time, the mixture turns white. The photos below show three shots of my first efforts at experimentation.

And here it is on my acrylic-painted background.

Texture 5

A potential negative is that the spacking’s edges round off somewhat if you go over them with paint or ModPodge. Here’s a closeup.

Texture 8

I like the muted effect, so having less-than-crisp edges is fine with me. I’ll publish the finished picture someday, but it’s a Christmas present, so no reveal yet!

Fast and Fabulous Pho

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Asian flavors are rarely my go-to selection. When it’s a choice between Chinese, Mexican, Italian, or a good hamburger, the continent of Asia and its flavors are left in my dust! But I’ve always been fascinated by the idea of a Vietnamese chicken soup, and when I saw this recipe described as “cheater pho,” I decided to give it a try. Read the rest of this entry

Corked Garden Sphere

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Corkball 2

I love how this looks in my garden, but the making of the corked garden sphere was a pain in the neck!  I harvested from my cork collection (how did it get so large?!) and glued the corks on to a cheap, round light fixture.

Corkball 3

I used a tube of clear silicone to do the attaching.

Corkball 4

The gluing wasn’t difficult, but it was frustrating and time consuming. Each cork threw the sphere off balance, so I had to adjust the sphere routinely in order to keep the topmost area free for a new cork or two.

Then I had to let the silicone set before I could readjust and add more. Patience is not my strong suit, but I found I could add a few corks, read a little, add a few more corks, clean a little, add a few more corks, cook a little, …. You get the idea! I’m very please with the final outcome.

Corkball 1

Even More Mixed Media

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Once again, I hosted a Crafts and Cocktails party at my house on Monday. Creativity was in the air!  This time, we had a Cricut machine to cut out our letters. Two of the ladies at the party left with incomplete projects, but here are the three pictures that were closest to completion.  Hope you like ’em! Read the rest of this entry

More Mixed Media Pictures

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Several weeks ago, I blogged about a mixed media picture I had made for a 30th birthday celebration (https://crapsmanship.com/2017/06/16/mixed-media-bike-pic/). Subsequently for my girlfriends’ Crafts & Cocktails meeting, we did mixed media art at my house. I gave each lady an 11 x 17 sheet of mixed media paper, and I opened up all my crafts crap for use. We had water colors, acrylics, stamps, washi tape, stencils, scrapbook paper, and more.   Read the rest of this entry

Corn and Fettuccini Salad

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Corn 1

Last week, I had several friends over for a Crafts & Cocktails day. We made mixed media art, drank some mango mimosas, and ate this easy lunch salad. Dan the Man and I have had the recipe forever; it first came out of the Houston Cronicle. It’s yummy, and it makes a perfect lunch with a side of salad (fruit salad, this particular day, but green salad would work well, too).

Corn 9

I first put on a big pot of water to boil for one pound of fettuccini.  While the water was coming up to temperature, I added one cup of frozen corn, uncooked, to a big bowl.

Corn 2

In a smaller bowl, I combined one cup of mayonnaise (Hellman’s, of course), 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon Kosher salt, and 2 teaspoons cracked black pepper.

Once the fettuccini had cooked according to package directions, I drained it and drenched it in cold water to stop the cooking.

Corn 6

I dumped the pasta into the big bowl with the corn, and then mixed the mayonnaise goop into the pasta.

Corn 7

I then put the delicious yumminess into a serving bowl, added a sprinkling of black pepper for garnish, and chilled it for several hours before serving.

Corn 8

Try it.  It’ll be a new family favorite, I promise.  And you’ll like the simple ingredients and assembly process!

CORN AND FETTUCCINI SALAD

1 pound fettuccini

1 c. frozen corn

1 c. mayonnaise

1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese

1 tsp. garlic powder

1 tsp. Kosher salt

2 tsp. cracked black pepper

Cook fettuccini according to package directions.  While pasta is cooking, add corn to large bowl.  In a small bowl, combine mayonnaise, cheese, garlic powder, salt, and pepper.  Drain the pasta and run cold water over it.  Put fettuccini in the large bowl with the corn.  Combine the mixtures and mix well.  Refrigerate for a couple of hours before serving.

Beef Tips Recipe — with easier directions!

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Beef Tips

Nearly two years ago, I blogged about an easy recipe for beef tips (https://crapsmanship.com/2015/07/22/our-favorite-beef-tips/).  It’s one of Dan the Man’s favorite meals, but though it’s easy, it involves a few steps that annoy me so much, I don’t like to cook it. The last time I made it, though, I was able to simplify the bothersome steps into a technique that appeals to my lazy side. Read the rest of this entry