Friday, April 15, 2011

Inspired Art by Pier 1

I recently remodeled our billiard room and needed a large canvas painting to fill a wall.  I found the most beautiful canvas painting at Pier 1 with an impressive price tag ($350)! So, I went to Michaels with a 50% coupon, bought a canvas for $20 and raided my mom's acrylic paint cabinets. Here is the one from Pier 1:

And here is mine:

I didn't take any pictures while I was painting this since it was BB (before blogging).  ;)  I re-created a similar picture on a piece of scrap paper to illustrate how I did this.  

You will need:
Fan brush
Flat brush
Round brush
Sea sponge
Paper plates
Scrap paper
Painter's tape
Measuring tape

I measured and taped a rectangle in the center of my canvas.  I also used the tape to create a few horizontal lines inside the painting as a guide. In my re-creation, I only used one horizontal line inside the painting.

On a paper plate, I squeezed out the colors I needed and left enough space in between to mix colors right on my "pallet" with the sponge. 

I always practice on a sheet of scrap paper to make sure there are no funky sponge marks.  If your sponge is making a funky mark, turn the sponge until you get good dab marks.   

I started on the bottom by drawing a wave with my sponge by dragging it across the canvas as a guide.  Then, I started dabbing paint on until the entire abstract wave was covered.  Here is a picture of the 2nd abstract wave drawn with the sponge before I dabbed paint in to fill it.

The white layer was done by loading the sponge with white paint and dragging it across the canvas in a wave pattern.

I loaded some blue and white paint on my flat brush without blending it too well and just brushed it across the top of the rectangle to make the sky.  

I allowed the paint to dry, then I removed the horizontal tape and placed it at the bottom of where the sky would be. 

Repeat the previous step again to finish the sky.

I removed all the tape after the paint was dry to the touch. 

I used painter's tape to get make the stems of my sea oats.  I tore a few pieces down the center, then placed them on the canvas to create a stem.  This is time consuming because you have to work at getting the painter's tape to "bend".  I could have just free handed them, but I just felt more comfortable taping it.  I used brown paint to fill in the stem. Be sure the painter's tape is firmly pressed down or your paint will bleed through.

I practiced making the sea oats on a scrap piece of paper until I felt comfortable using my fan brush. 

I removed the tape, then added the fuzzy oats.

I used brown paint to create the oats, then reloaded my brush with some white paint to add some depth to them.  I used the same technique to create the other 3 oats.

Along the edges of the canvas, I used my sponge and brown paint to get that "aged" look.  I also dabbed a little brown paint in the white section and blended it so it was not so stark white.
Here are some more pictures of my painting:

I am really happy at how it turned out and even happier that I only spent $22 for the canvas and the hardware to hang it!


  1. This looks great. It amazes me how much they charge for some pictures that someone can do for just a few dollars.

  2. Looks wonderful I actually like yours better. I have this picture in my Sims 2 game.
    I love that you have shown us how to do them ourselves.

  3. Good job! I really like it!


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