What’s it been? A year?

No! A year and two months-ish. This is most definitely not how I expected things to go here. But, as I’m sure you’ve all experienced, sometimes life just decides to happen all at once.

I’ve moved three times in the last year. I’ve re-acclimated to Richmond, the city of my heart, after being away for almost a decade. I’ve found an old friend who I thought was lost, and made new friends. I still haven’t been to a show, but that will be remedied next month. Occasionally, my bipolar has kicked my ass in only the ways that bipolar can – but I’m still here, and I think that counts for a lot.

But most importantly, art is back in my life. I’m finally settled in a place where I can unpack my supplies and start new projects – and get this blog going again!

I’ve started two new projects – one is kind of a public art projects and the other is an altered tin project. I have no details for you yet, because I’m still working them out in my head, but I do have a mini-tutorial for you, as well as the beginning shots of each work.

Public Art Project 1

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I’m sure all you smarty-pantses will see where this is headed.

Since my other project involves altered tins, I thought I’d show you my favorite method for quickly rusting them.

First the materials:

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This is by no means an exact science and I am by no means an exact scientist, so you’ll have to go with the flow here. The good news is, you really can’t screw this up.

Step 1. Gather your materials. You will need blank tins, hydrogen peroxide, salt, and some kind of acid – white vinegar is cheapest, but I had lemons that needed to be used, so that’s what went in the mix (beauty bonus: all that juice on your hands? rub it into your face – instant AHA exfoliation). You’ll also need a container to hold everything, and possibly something to weigh the tins down so that they are completely submerged.

Step 2. Prep your tins. Not pictured here is a sanding block, but you can see the difference in the two tins above. On the left is an unaltered tin, on the right is one that I sanded. The etched parts allow your rusting solution to permeate the top coat and helps speed up the rusting process, as well as creating a really cool texture.

Step 3. Mix your solution. Combine a few tablespoons of salt, another few tablespoons of peroxide (eyeballing this is perfectly acceptable in my world), and your acid. I used the juice of two lemons – so maybe a quarter to half cup of vinegar, if that’s what you are using. Use a container of your choice – I’m currently using a smallish Gladware container.

Step 4. Rust, baby, rust. Completely submerge your tins in the solution – weigh them down if you need to. I like to flip mine around a few times during the process, just to make sure everything is exposed to the solution.

Step 5. Wait. Sit back and let your concoction do its thing. When your tins achieve the desired level of rust, take them out, rinse them off, and do what you will with them. I do recommend applying some sort of sealant – gel medium is great, but even a general paint sealant will work.

Note: These tins will start to rust within 20 minutes (told you it was a quick method!) so if you really want to control the outcome, definitely keep an eye on them and remove them from the solution once they reach the desired level.

Easy peasy. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go watch some metal bits rust.

 

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