Tag Archives: how to

Tutorial on how to make a plaster angel

Tutorial on how to make a plaster angel out of an old tin and twigs for legs. There are a lot of pictures, and I will explain every step of the process.

List of materials

  • An Altoids tin or other tin with a lid
  • two sturdy twigs
  • plaster strips (can be bought on Amazon)
  • a flat stick
  • aluminum foil
  • masking tape
  • sandpaper
  • sealer
  • acrylic paints
  • clay face, polymer clay or air dry clay
  • Apoxie Sculpt or other epoxy clay
  • a piece of cardboard

I began the process by making a hole at the top of the Altoids tin and two holes on the bottom using an awl. On the bottom part, I pushed in the awl as far as it could go to get holes large enough to insert the twigs. You can use a drill, but you would need some clamps to hold the tin in place.

I used aluminum foil to keep the flat stick and the legs firmly in the tin, and then I sealed it with masking tape, making sure to tape the legs firmly to the box.

Then I wrapped the whole thing with strips of plaster. Use a separate bowl for water (not your water coloring bowl) to dip the strips, and put a protective sheet under the plaster. I used newspapers, but you can use plastic. Keep in mind that plaster is dusty and messy. The plaster will stick to itself, not the tin, so you need strips that are long enough to wrap around themselves. Note: wash your hands in the bowl when done, not under the faucet until most of the plaster is removed. Do not empty plaster water into the sink. I pour it outside, but you can let the plaster sink to the bottom of the bowl, and the next day (or so) pour the water down the sink and scrape the plaster into the trash.

(Sorry about the blurry image.) I wrapped the plaster especially tight around the top of the legs and the flat stick, several layers of plaster. Then I let it dry. If it’s cold to the touch the next day, it needs to dry longer. When completely dry, sand it lightly with some sandpaper, and seal it with two layers of sealer. I used Liquitex matte medium, but any sealer will work.

How to make the wings

I used 19 gauge annealed steel wire for the wings. See picture for how I bent it to form a figure eight (sort of.) The twisted part in the middle will act as the wall hanger. Bear in mind the wire will rust in contact with wet plaster, but I liked the effect. You can use aluminum wire if you don’t like rust.

Then I covered the wings with plaster and let them dry.

I worked on two different angel sculptures so the pictures are a bit mixed bag.

Re clay faces

I made the faces from polymer clay and painted them with various layers of paint. I have a tutorial on YouTube on how to paint faces. You can sculpt a very simple face out of clay and paint it. VIDEO LINK.

I added a piece of cardboard to the head for a headpiece and to hold the face in place. I mixed some Apoxie Sculpt to make a thin layer for a halo and stamped it with a rubber stamp. I rolled a piece of clay to stick on the back of the face to attach to the clay halo. I also added a flat piece of clay to the back of the cardboard.

When dry, you could see the flat stick through the clay, so I added another layer over it. Epoxy clay takes about 24 hours to dry completely. I also added clay to the wings to attach them to the body. Glue doesn’t work well on plaster even if it’s sealed, so go for some kind of epoxy clay.

My second doll is below.

The hearts on the chests of the two angels are made from Apoxie Sculpt and then painted when dry. I used raw sienna to paint all the edges of the tin and wings to get an aged effect.

Then I used unbleached titanium white and titanium white in layers to cover the body.

I sealed the angels twice when dry, painted the heart embellishments on the chests, and added some sweet affirmations from a Tim Holtz book of inspirational quotes. Two happy angels!! πŸ™‚

They are available in my etsy shop Earth and Faery. Please check out my other art items for sale as well. πŸ™‚ Thank you for reading this far. If you have questions, please post them in the comments.

Paper clay bowl with painted mandala

Paper clay is so much fun to work with. I don’t know the difference between paper clay and air dry clay, but they are both easy to work with. I like to make little bowls and paint them. It’s actually relaxing and satisfying to paint funky patterns without pre-planning.

I use Plus paper clay:

paper clay bowl

I roll an amount that I think will be enough for a small bowl. I roll it with a baking pin that I usually use for my polymer clay. I try to get the thickness even by eyeing the clay since I don’t have clay “bars” that help to make an even thickness. But handmade doesn’t have to be perfect!

I bend the clay over an object that will make the flat bottom I want. In my case, I used the bottom of an empty Mod Podge bottle. The bowl dries about 24 hours depending on how hot or cold it is.

Above are some examples of recent bowls. I made a YouTube video of my latest bowl, and you can watch it HERE.

I have also been making “heart guardians” from epoxy clay (Apoxie Sculpt) attached to rocks, shells, or geodes. They have been popular in my etsy shop. Here are some I made.

It has been fun to experiment with clay lately. I haven’t painted as much, but everything goes in cycles. I like to go with the flow of the moment. It’s challenging to make something different. I feel a lot of resistance, but when I press through that, I really enjoy the process.

I have some new items in my etsy shop if you’re interested. You can check them out HERE.

Please make your own paper clay bowl. I know you’ll love it! πŸ™‚ You can’t go wrong with the process.

Lots of love,

Maria

New year, new inspiration, still old me

New year, can you believe it? We begin with a bang thinking that this year will be different. We’re going to shed all bad habits, take up good ones and finally break through THAT resistance, and vanquish all procrastination.

I have news, we are still who we were on December 31, but I can see the lure of a fresh year ahead. I entered the Goodreads reading challenge to read 55 books this year. I read a lot so I will probably make it, but maybe that is the optimism of a new year speaking? We shall see…

I did start the year with a creative bang, so at least I have that going for me. Art is in my blood, and the more art I make, the more anchored the “habit” gets. It is a good, nourishing habit!

Make art get into your blood! Take a daring step to incorporating an art habit into your daily life this year. It’s amazingly rewarding. If you are reading this blog, you are an artist. This year, give your art a great deal of love and attention. It will make you so happy.

Here are some things I made in January. These figures are elves /nature spirits / fairies, whatever you want to call them.

I made some floral paintings as well, and a funky bird. You can check out these items in my etsy shop Earth and Faery.

I have a gift for you! Yesterday I made a how-to YouTube video on painting a funky floral like the one above.

YouTube video link

One of my most popular YT videos is the on how to make a spirit doll. You can easily make one and stuff some intentions and affirmations into it. I write them down on pieces of paper, and with the focus on my intentions, I incorporate them into the doll. So much fun! Check out that VIDEO here.

For art journaling or plain writing journaling, I have a simple tutorial on how to make your own journal. All you need is willingness, some art supplies like watercolor paper and a few paints, and some string or embroidery floss. Check that blog post HERE.

I’d love to hear what you’re working on or what difficulties you have with making art into a consistent practice. Leave a comment below or write to me at maria@mariagreene.org.

Have the best year ever, and lots of love and glitter sprinkles! πŸ™‚

Maria

Make a funky bird ornament

Make a funky bird, friends! I just posted a new YouTube video on how to make this fun and quirky bird (owl?) A fantasy bird maybe? Click HERE.

Make a funky bird

I have been pretty busy in my studio this month, but I’ve focused more on sewing than paint and paper. I made a couple of songbirds. They are so much fun to make, but now I have to put away all the sewing paraphernalia.

I got a couple of paintings made as well.

I think I mentioned in my last blog post that I’m re-issuing the old historical romances I wrote in the 90s. One is set to come out on September 1, The Undoing of Lord Saville, and the other is already out, TheTaming of Viscount Perth. If you like humorous sweet romance, you might like these. Only on Kindle at this time.

I hope you’re having some joyous time in your studio during these crazy times. I love going into my studio and make happy things. Nothing better to keep the positive vibes up! Well, meditation really helps too.

Lots of love, Maria

P.S. My etsy shop is shock full of fun and colorful items. Earth and Faery.

Mermaid and Polymer clay

Mermaid(s) have been sneakily calling my name lately, and today I sat down and made a polymer clay plaque with a mermaid to attach to an old painting. I have several more projects in the making. two depicting mermaids. Here’s a picture of today’s project.

I had an abundance of blue shades of polymer clay and it was time to make something sea-worthy out of them.

I made a YouTube video of the process. You can check it out and see if it’s something you’d like to try. The video is 20 minutes long, but there are a lot of details to cover.

Please leave a comment if you feel so inclined.

What are you working on today?

Lots of love, and stay safe!

Maria

Polymer clay mosaic art

Polymer clay mosaic art is one of the crafts I never get tired of making. Polymer clay is incredibly versatile as it can be used in jewelry and sculpture, but I mostly stick with the mosaic tiles.

I have made these kinds of boxes and frames for years and they evolve as I come up with new ideas. At one point I incorporated recycled Christmas heart ornaments into the art.Β 
polymer clay
Lots of mixed media in this old piece and the altered heart ornament is in the middle.

I also used to embellish paintings with mosaic tiles in the past.

polymer clay mosaic
Wild Bride

The veil is actual lace that I stiffened with Mod Podge. Β The face is made with a polymer clay mold and the dress is covered with tiles.

I have made many boxes and continue to do so. My etsy shop Earth and Faery is full of them. πŸ™‚

polymer clay mosaic
Older version of a box

This older box has a dragonfly charm attached to it.

The items below are later creations. I have started making mermaids in frames. When I compare my contemporary work with old pieces, I notice a more cohesive design. Perfection was never my goal though, and cutting straight lines in the clay is still difficult. πŸ™‚

polymer clay mosaic
box lid

polymer clay mosaic polymer clay mosaic

polymer clay mosaic
polymer clay mermaid

My most popular how-to video on YouTube is about painting mosaic tiles. You can check it out here.

It’s not hard to make tiles. It takes time and you have to be willing to follow through with the process to get the tiles you like. Then the fun begins–designing your boxes or frames.

If you’d like to find out how to make a box from beginning to end, you can purchase my self studyΒ how-to e-course.Β Β It’s a bargain at $23. Try a new thing today! πŸ™‚

Have a wonderful, creative week.

xo

Maria

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