Home Decorating How to: Brushstroke Art

How to: Brushstroke Art

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Lately we’ve been feeling pretty arts-and-craftsy. Our inspiration? All the fun statement art Annie’s brought in (and, of course, one of our color crushes, indigo blue). We’ve combined the three and pulled together a quick how-to on creating your own Brushstroke Art.

What you’ll need:
• Good quality watercolor paper. We used Arches cold press 300# 22”x40” paper (cold press refers to the surface texture; hot press is smooth). Using a heavier paper will not curl or warp with water media.
• Liquid watercolor: we mixed blue and black to achieve the rich indigo color you see here
• A “Haka” brush or flat brush works best.
• Foam core, straight edge, and cutting tools (not shown) for creating a backing for your watercolor paper to sit in the frame
• Spray adhesive
• Hot glue for attaching the foam core to your frame
• Water for cleaning brushes and giving the paper an overall wash for the squiggle technique
• Frames: we used simple wood frames, and mounted the art on foam core and inside the frame.

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Where to get it:
All Paper, paint and brushes are from Dick Blick.

Techniques:
Ombré Stripes
Dip your brush in the paint for the first, most saturated line. As you work your way up the paper, dip your brush in clean water after you paint each stroke to gradually remove paint from the brush, creating an ombré effect.

Letter
We did a calligraphy-style A for our letter (of course). Dip and create a calligraphy technique by holding your brush at a 45-degree angle while you draw the lines.

Squiggle Technique
Wash the paper first with a light layer of water. We didn’t try to wash over the whole piece of paper—leaving areas of dry paper creates a more interesting effect. Dip brush in the paint and randomly squiggle a line across the paper. Dip back into the paint as much as necessary.

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