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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Artsy Fartsy

So I'm really trying this new "keeping my finances in check" thing because I no longer have as large of an income since I went from full-time to part-time (which is AMAZING by the way - everyday is like the weekend).

Enough bragging though, so I joined the financial band wagon and am doing the Total Money Makeover with Dave Ramsey so I can make sure we use our finances to the best of our ability and because we have several large expenses in the next five years that we need to save for (new kitchen, new bathroom, new babies, new babies from Africa, etc) and that means cutting back on some areas now.

I've been going over what we've spent since getting the house, and I have to accept the fact that I probably (definitely) spend too much of my money on crafts and projects. Probably more then I spend for myself on food. I know that's sick.

So I've started to use my large brain the good Lord gifted me with and things from around the house to create new projects with. As a result, you will see about a 99% increase in projects that cost nothing (for me) to do.

Recommended by my Mom, I was surfing on Anthropologie's website since that's a good place to glean inspiration from, and I came across the Tree of Life.



For $2,000. Why anyone would spend $2,000 on a piece of art is beyond me, but it serves as good inspiration for me.

But then arises the problem that I don't have a large canvas lying around.

But I do have lots of scrap wood.

So I headed down to my fun house mirrors of death room, grabbed some 1 x 8's, and slapped em together to make this.



Now for painting. Since I'm not spending any money, I had to work with the house paints and acrylics I had on hand, which meant lots of mixing and diluting.



The slew of pictures that follow show my various stages of painting and layering colors. All the color layers I did were mixed with water so the colors underneath would show through as well.

I started with a light blue base.

Then taped off some sections where I wanted to do different colors.


Then after many layers of washed colors on top of those colors (and some sanding) I drew branches on the edges.


Then I did more coats and sanding on top of that.


Then I looked at my inspiration picture and drew the tree.

A side note about free-hand drawing. Break the drawing down to one line at a time. This is what I've done since I was like, 7 and I can draw Disney characters like nobodies business.

So I perched up to take a look at it.


Too matchy matchy.

So I took out some dark brown stain, sanded a bit, and rubbed and rubbed, and then rubbed some more.

I don't know if others have this problem, but whenever I try this technique with stain or glaze, I feel like it just looks like someone rubbed dirt all over it (hmmm maybe when I really cut back that's what I will do...)

So I grabbed the sander again and ran it just on the tree where it looked muddiest.

Perfection.

Cost? Nothing.

Hours? None. Okay it took some, probably total.... 2? The thing is, since you do most of it in tiny stages, like the washes, you literally paint on a layer, which takes 30 seconds to minute, then you wait about an hour (or longer if you're busy, doesn't really matter) till it dries and do the next one. The whole thing took me about 6 days, but that includes me not working on it much during the weekend and very sporadically during the week. All in all though, very easy :)

Keeping It Simple




















linkyparty

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84 comments:

  1. I LOVE your painting~ Actually think it looks WAY better than the inspiration art! ....Definitely on my rainy day list! :) Thanks!

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  2. You had me at "Artsy Fartsy".

    Also, that is totally awesome. You are one skilled woman.

    Also, I could never, EVER draw disney characters like nobodies' business. EVER.

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  3. It's beautiful!!! My friend is an art teacher who swears ANYONE can draw if they take it line by line!

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  4. SOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much better than Anthro. WORD.

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  5. Beautiful! Thank you for sharing how you made it.

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  6. I like yours better than the original! Hooray for reusing and Dave Ramsey.

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  7. Very cute! Love the stained look! Thanks for linking up!

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  8. Very nice! The glaze really adds to the character.

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  9. Love it! It looks even better than your inspiration piece.

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  10. I love it! I've been thinking about doing some artwork for over our fireplace. I might have to try this technique. And I love that you didn't use any money. That is perfection itself.

    Brittany
    http://www.prettyhandygirl.com

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  11. This is sooo pretty. I love the colors!

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  12. It totally matches the background of your blog! Gorgeous result and FREE (yippee - Bonus!) Turned out fantastic.

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  13. I absolutely LOVE thi sproject! So, I wanted to let you know that we are planning on featuring it (tomorrow at noon). We hope that you get a bunch of new visitors.
    www.remodelaholic.com

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  14. This is AMAZING! I love it. I wasn't sure at the beginninguntil the bit where it got 'grubby' and then I utterly adored it.

    If the Anthro one is worht 2000 smackers, you'rs must be double that.

    I love your blog.I'll be your new Follower.

    Sarahx

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  15. I love it! Blown away by the end result actually. And I notice too that it matches your blog, how cute is that.

    Seriously, some blog love here, beautiful job. It is better than the original. I'm inspired.

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  16. at first I wasn't sure I would like it but it turned out amazing! I MEAN REALLY AMAZING!
    Bravo!!!
    so inspirational
    Thank you for sharing
    Nancy

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  17. absolutely gorgeous! i want one now ... hmmm, list of things to do will need to be re-ordered.

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  18. Like many others have said, your version is MUCH better than the inspiration. Thanks so much for sharing the step by step.

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  19. I found you via Shabby Nest's post... This is so cute and I like how the design is subtle and not a stark contrast. Well done!

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  20. If Anthro want $2000 for theirs, then you should definitely ask $4000 for yours...it looks so much better ;o)

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  21. You did a fantastic job!!! Looks like a lot of work, but I think with patience, you'll get great results like you did! Thanks for the grea tutorial!

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  22. This is so beautiful! You definitely know how to work a paintbrush- I would never have guessed that you made it from things you had lying around. Great work!

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  23. I think you did a great job knocking off the anthro version. And actually, I quite like the look with the stain on it before you sanded it. It gives it more dimension....but like you, sometimes it seems like it has the rubbed on dirt look. I would of probably sanded it down too. In any case, I love your new art piece and I love that you used what you had on hand. : )

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  24. Could I do this? I don't know...but I really, really want to. Thanks for the step by step. I'm not sure how I found the site but I'm glad I stumbled across it! You're so creative!

    susan

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  25. Wow! This looks so great! I love the way the branches in the background blend in but are still noticeable. I am your newest follower :)

    Jonie-
    easyascutandpaste.blogspot.com

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  26. Cuteness girl! I am fo sho going to try this!

    love your guts
    mandi

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  27. Awe inspiring! Wonderful tutorial too.

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  28. Found this via The Shabby Nest and LOVE IT! I'll be linking!!

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  29. WOW! Stunning! I love your more than the Anthropology one! Fantastic!!!

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  30. I love your version better than the $2000 version. Free rocks.

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  31. I love it and I think it looks much better than the Anthropologie version. Nice!

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  32. This is great!!! I am going to have to reproduce this. I did something similar and made it a beach sign and the same thing happened to me with the brown glaze it looked dirty, I had to get the sander out. Stop by my blog and check it out if you get the chance!

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  33. k yours is way better than theirs. I love it!

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  34. Way better than Anthro! I think I may have to somewhat borrow your idea (if that's okay?)

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  35. Love this! It would look awesome over my bed.

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  36. I love love love this! It will go perfectly in my master bedroom! I am totally making it after the holiday craziness subsides!

    Anthropology does serve a very good source of inspiration!

    Love and Hugs, Jess
    theplannertheprocrastinator.blogspot.com

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  37. Really nice ! I would really like to do something like that, but I don't have a free wall that I could hang it to.

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  38. This is just amazing!!! 0$ compared to $2,000. Wow! And, yours looks a million times better. I will absolutely be trying this. Thanks for the inspiration :)

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  39. I love this. Thanks for sharing! And good luck with The Total Money Makeover. We are huge fans of Dave Ramsey at our house. His plan works!!!!

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  40. i like yours a lot better than the original. the three pieces of wood really add a lot of character.

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  41. beautiful, and way prettier than the Anthro version (don't tell them i said that)!
    Esther

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  42. This is totally gorgeous! I think yours looks a hundred times better than the original. Amazing!

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  43. Fantasitc! It looks so great! I might have to brave something like this.

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  44. OK - that is AWESOME! Love your blog!

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  45. Hi there! You inspired me so much to try this. I just created a blog today and my first post is about this great tutorial of yours. Thank you for sharing!
    Come see how mine turned out.http://amy-healthyandcrafty.blogspot.com/2010/10/painting.html

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  46. I love this! You also inspired me to try as well. I think it turned out great.

    http://imkristin.blogspot.com/2010/10/103010.html

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  47. I think your's turned out perfect, and it definitely doesn't look like you rubbed dirt all over it (but that's exactly why I've been too afraid to use a glaze on any project).

    I hope you'll enter it in the Copycat Challenge that I'm hosting, there's lots of great prizes :). You can go to sewmuchado.blogspot.com for all the details!

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  48. Wow..NICE! This would look great sitting on my shelf/mantle. I may have to try this.

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  49. Holy cow gorgeous! I would pay good money for this (since there is NO way I could paint let alone draw this!).

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  50. Awesome awesome inspiration! Love outside box thinking!! So cute! Gotta go. I'm off to make one!!

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  51. Oh my gosh..just saw this on Pinterest...and I'm pinning...like yours way better the the $2000 model...thanks for taking the time to share

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  52. Gorgeous! I'm featuring this at womenwhodoitall.blogspot.com

    :) Jill

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  53. I love this, thanks for sharing how you pulled it off for nothing but a bit of your time. Inspires me to try something for a little spot of mine :)

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  54. wow!! I like yours better than anthro's!!

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  55. This is wonderful, I thought your project was the inspiration piece because it looks so much better than the original!

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  56. I love Anthrapologie (not that I have ever actually bought anything there) but I like your piece much better than the inspiration piece. I think the stain/glaze at the end really transformed it.

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  57. I love your version of it a lot better! Great job!

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  58. This is beautiful! I would like to make one for my house. Thank you for the inspiration! I found you through Pinterest, repinning this project to one of my boards now. ;)

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  59. Totally, totally gorgeous. Better than the Anthro version for sure. Your colors and aging are perfect! Saw your work on Pinterest.

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  60. This is beautiful! I'll have to try it. Love love love!!!

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  61. Love that! It'd make a pretty awesome headboard if you did a larger version!

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  64. Awesome! I followed your tutorial and made one of my own and added bird silouettes sitting on the branches. I wish I could attach a photo. Everyone loves it!

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  68. Wow, I was looking at the photos and thinking I still kind of like the Antrho one a little better with it's rustic appeal... but then I read a little more of the details and realized it was YOURS that I was looking at and I liked it better!!! Really amazing! I'm running outside to get my old fenceboard and making one for myself too!!! And free!!! Thanks for your inspiration! I'm your new follower!

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  69. I made one,, or well I am almost done! Just have the stain part left!! my wood wasn't "rough enough" so I mangled it with verious objects! Thanks, Cant wait to hang it up!

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  70. Yours looks way better than the Anthro one, trust me. I love that you used wood instead and roughed it up. Now I just have to find some scrap lumber and get started on one for my home. Thanks for the tutorial. Judy

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  71. Visiting from the Tremaynes where I saw your comment that you're tired of people posting "every 2.4 seconds" with "ugly pillow tutorials." Agreed! It made me think that you were probably doing and posting some interesting things over here. I wasn't disappointed! =) I especially love this project! Color me impressed. ;)

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  74. I pinned this months ago and just now visited your blog to take a closer look. Oh my goodness, I love this thing! It is SO much cooler than your inspiration (good heavens, if you've trumped anthropologie, you should go into business!).
    Off to try my hand at it...

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  75. I love your "Crummy Home" and featured your *drool worthy* rustic tree as an example that art doesn't have to be expensive.

    You can see it at:
    http://www.cookingatcafed.com/2012/05/there-i-said-it-pin-it-if-you-must.html

    All the best,
    Dana at Cooking at Cafe D

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  76. This is really great, and has opened me up to a slew of ideas I can do with all the extra wood, and pallets I have piles in my barn. Thank you so much for the step by step directions. It's really beautiful. Also, at most art stores, for pretty cheap (under twenty bucks), you can buy a kids version of the projectors we used in schools as kids. You can take any picture and it will shine it onto a wall, or lean your canvas against the was and you can adjust it to size if you feel like you can't draw the perfect picture. You, on the other hand, did a great job.

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  77. I know, I'm late for the party, but this is an awesome idea. I'll have to try it, thanks for making the tutorial! It looks really amazing.

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  78. Hi, I'm a writer for Disney Baby and I'd love to feature this in a roundup of inspiring ideas for fall themed nurseries. If for some reason you do NOT want to be included please let me know via email at beckarobinson@me.com Thanks! I'm so excited to feature your beautiful DIY :)

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