Sunday, February 06, 2011

Stand Clear the Closing Doors


Metro Card Empire State Building No. 1


I've been a virtual Metro Card painting factory lately. I've been scavenging discarded cards, cleaning them up and then prepping them for painting.

 

I lay them all out on sheets of cardboard, face up. Next, I haul down my giant tub of acrylic gesso. Slathering the card with a layer of gesso provides a more stable surface for the oil paint. The gesso is a thick, milky white, much like marshmallow frosting.





I affix piece of masking tape along each card, using the magnetic strip as a guide, so as to just apply the gesso on the area to be painted.



Looks pretty messy, doesn't it?


Then they've got to sit and dry, overnight at least.

 
Grrrrr. The waiting is the hardest part, no?

But once dry, I'm ready to go! Some of the cards require a little gentle sanding to smooth out the surface. Then again, the streaky, rough surface can work to create an interesting texture in the painting. 

Here are two more that I've finished........ 

 
Metro Card World Trade Center No. 1




Metro Card World Trade Center Above the Clouds


Finally, here are a few more that are still in progress......




The completed cards are going up on my Etsy shop as soon as they dry -- will keep you posted!

12 comments:

Melanie said...

I love them. Thanks for showing how to prep them. They look majestic.

moreidlethoughts said...

Chrysler Building! Woo-hoo!
(The only way to get gesso off a polar-fleece sweater is with fine nail scissors. I know!)

VH McKenzie said...

Thanks!

And yes, a couple of Chrysler Buildings will show up shortly -- got to work on them a bit more and let them dry.

And dinahmow, the whole damn process is messy -- after this first go-round, I looked in the bathroom mirror while cleaning up and saw that I had a nice, thick smear of ultramarine blue all the way around my left eye and a smear of yellow ochre across my right cheek.

Good times.

Ginny Huber said...

These are fantastic; what a perfect use of ametro cards; Sigh! Even with the snow etc. there, it makes me miss New York; I'd likely be up for a Chrysler building..when those dry..I'll check your etsy shop!

VH McKenzie said...

Thanks so much, Ginny! I should have them up in about a week or so -- time to finish them, let them dry and then get decent scans and photos of them all. Will keep everybody posted!

Bob Arihood said...

Beautiful little paintings . Good use of a throw-away. One took me back to a turner painting on the Thames
Bob

VH McKenzie said...

Thanks so much, Bob -- that is very high praise. _/\_

Sherry said...

This is a truly inspired idea, V.

xoSherry

Tatter Beans said...

What an awesome idea... so up cycle and original at the same time ...

raine studios said...

omg i frakking love these. Awesopme!

GoldEgg said...

so so so amazing! I can't wait to buy one...or many

Melanie said...

I see the Twin Towers here. Nice tribute.