I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I had been painting easter eggs. I've been having the best time playing around with it, even though I really have no idea what I'm doing. This didn't start out having anything to do with Easter, really, it started because I was wanting to try out the paint, and paper mache easter eggs seemed like a good (small, cheap) thing to experiment on. I had a set of Crafty Chica paints, which are sort of fiesta colors, not really colors that scream "Easter." I tried lightening them up with white to get more pastel colors, but while I was getting really pretty results, I was having trouble getting them to be consistent. (I guess what you'd have to do if you really wanted to be able to have the same color over and over would be to mix a larger amount up, sort of like they do with house paints.) So then I went and bought some Ceramcoat acrylics in sherbet pastels, and those are working out well, plus I'm still playing around with mixing them with the Crafty Chica paints, too, so now I've got pastels and brights and I can make everything in between, too. And then I started playing around with washing colors one over another and I ended up making some interesting effects, sort of accidentally.
I also stumbled onto a couple of useful tools that are a bit unconventional. One thing was something I had bought to protect my jewelry table - it was a fondant sheet from the cake decorating section of the craft store. It's a big plasticized sheet, and it has a 1" grid on it as well as big circles for rolling out icing. (I haven't used those so far for the painting I've been doing but it seems like they could be useful if you were doing something more precise than what I have been.) I ended up cutting my sheet up into smaller pieces, but that was because I live in an apartment and my space is really limited. I don't think everybody would necessarily want to do that. Up until I stumbled onto an ad hoc paint tray - see below - I squeezed my paint right out onto the fondant sheet. It cleans up fine with soap and water or a baby wipe. (I had bought the baby wipes for cleaning up rubber stamps, but they are amazing for cleaning a variety of things, I am finding. If you have children you probably know this already but I don't, so they are new to me!)
The other thing was that I had some of those mini quiches that you buy at Sam's Club - the brand is Nancy's Petite Quiches - and they come in plastic trays with indentations for the individual little quiches. They make great paint trays, which is something I hadn't gotten around to buying yet, and it's less messy than squeezing the paint right out onto the plastic sheet, like I had been doing. (That worked just fine, actually - except that since I'm working with egg shapes, they have a tendency to roll, and once or twice they rolled right into the paint.)
Oh, and I am sealing my eggs with Ceramcoat Glossy Varnish, which is very shiny and looks great. Pictures to come. They are not great works of art, since I have no real painting skills whatsoever, but they are cute, just the same.
(I also decoupaged some eggs, but I'll talk about that later.)
(Incidentally, this is apparently my 101st post! Pretty amazing, considering how slowly I started off!)