Thursday, May 21, 2009

Tracing Nature

I've seen all kinds of beautiful simple silhouette canvases lately; they have me totally intrigued. I'm totally drawn to the dramatic contrast of the silhouette image on a white canvas. I've been thinking about how to make one of my own for some time now.. so today was the day!

Here's what I ended up with, but of course the sky is the limit. There are SO many different things you could use for this. I have plans to do a variation of this with pussy willows and another with apple blossom branches.

I can't wait to also try three long interacting canvases, hung together.

** You can click on the photos to see a larger view**

All you need is a canvas (I used a 16x20.), a light or lamp to cast a shadow, and a branch, flower, etc., you want to use for your piece. Be sure to attach your branch to something stable so that your shadow does not move.

Once your shadow is cast and in the position you like, trace around the edges of the shadows (every little place). It really didn't take that long and was actually really relaxing. I found that just lying on the floor with it worked well.


Once it was all traced, I went over all the pencil lines with a brown Sharpie. Be sure to use a good eraser and remove all the pencil lines that you might be able to see once you have gone over it all with the Sharpie.


Instead of using water color, I used Glimmer Mist to fill in my image. I just poured some out of the bottle and into a little dish. I then applied it with a paintbrush. (Because Glimmer Mist has metallic in the paint (for that pretty shimmer), if you use it to paint with, be sure to swish it around a bit to keep it mixed up as you load your brush.)

As I brushed the Glimmer Mist on, I let it "pool" in some places for a more variegated look.

You can see in the photo below the shimmer that Glimmer Mist has in it.

I bought this green chair at a flea market over the weekend and really needed something with a little more green in it to make it work in this room.


A canvas like this is a fun and inexpensive way to add new little bit of Art to your wall.

Hope you get a chance to give it a try!



  1. I like this new blog Vicki, keep it up

  2. This is simply amazing! Thanks for the tutorial!

  3. This is beautiful, Vic!!

  4. I'm beyond in love with this! I want to try it one day soon!

  5. oooooh.....aaaaah...I really love the silhouettes too....and this one's gorgeous!!

  6. My heavens, Vicki, now I KNOW what to do with all the canvases I have! LOL Stunning!