Monday, March 1, 2021

Golden Angel Triptych

The new releases by Gwen Lafluer for PaperArtsy are gorgeous! The little frames (EGL14) really caught my eye. First, I tested them with black ink on white smooth cardstock. They printed soooo perfectly! (I don't know about you, but when I get a new stamp and it doesn't perform well, I am really disappointed.)

I imagined them as antique golden mirrors, so I set about printing them on heavy black cardstock with a Versamark stamp pad, then sprinkled Ranger fine gold embossing powder. I gently brushed away any excess embossing powder, then zapped it with my heat gun. It was magical!

It occurred to me that little faces would be really cute in the leafy circle, and that the keyhole shape hinted at a dress or body shape. So, I made a bunch of golden circles and keyholes, then tested several color printouts of vintage images from The Graphics Fairy and ArtTeaLife (also known as OneCrabapple on Etsy) inside the shapes.

So far, they looked really cute. I thought that three images would look good together, and I remembered that I had some blank chipboard gothic arch shapes from Retro Cafe Art that would make a great triptych base.

I punched some extra holes in the center one (they came with two holes on one side only) and painted them black with some DecoArt acrylic, which has a matte finish. I gave the arches two coats of paint.

 I decided on which heads and bodies looked well together, then cut them carefully to fit inside the golden stamped shapes. I left a bit of black paper around the outer edges of the "body" and "face" frames, then glued them to the arches using both a glue stick and some heavy gel medium. Both the heavy black cardstock and the black paint had no sheen, so the cut edges blended nicely with the painted gothic arch background.

Then my next dilemma: how should I connect the arches? I have used many methods over the years, some more successful than others. I didn't want anything that would fall apart, be wiggly, lose it's flexibility, or conflict with the bright gold of the embossed images. I decided to try yet another method: brads and wire.

I used some large brass brads (the big fat ones that some of us used in elementary school!), then wired them together in the back.

Wire was twisted around the back of the brads and wound across the gap between the sections for a flexible yet strong hinge.

The triptych was still missing something...wings! I tried both the small and medium wings from Gwen's selection of Dresden gold. The medium size seemed to overpower the figures, so I went with the tiny ones. I attached them with gold mini brads so they could be moved around a bit.

I was almost finished. I still wanted something to tie the whole piece together...a little Dresden gold edging was just the thing. I carefully glued it around the edges (leaving the bottom free since it would be a standing piece of art rather than on a wall or in a journal). 

I snipped the bottom of the gold trim every 1/2" so that it would go around the curves, and used a generous amount of heavy gel medium. I did small sections at a time and let it dry in between adding sections. 

At the last minute, I switched out a couple of the faces: the first ones were a little too large and gave a cartoonish feeling to the angels. The smaller faces seemed gentler.

I like to think that the little triptych angels sitting on my art shelf above my desk are a trio of Guardian Angels watching over me, whispering hints, ideas, inspiration and encouragement.

1 comment:

Chrissy said...

What a genius use of the frame stamps! Such angelic muses!