I’ve been working on this piece for almost a month. It just didn’t come together as easily, or as comfortably as the last two I shared here. There was this idea in my head of what it /needed/ to be…and I couldn’t achieve that with what I had on hand. So my idea needed to be altered. This halted the creative process for me for a little while. I don’t know how anyone else works but when my work doesn’t come together like I want it to, I sort of freeze it for a while…put it on hold. It’s not on purpose. It’s more like my mind just cannot comprehend why in the world I’d want to change a perfectly good idea. I really have to laugh at myself sometimes. It’s better to laugh than cry, right? So that’s when I realized that what I was trying to do was too plain, much too plain indeed. I needed this to look like a party, and not just any party. Mardi Gras in New Orleans! So while it isn’t one of my favorites, I do think I captured the feel of a party in New Orleans.
I used a large white canvas (18 x 18, which is quite large for me) which I painted black. I then painted some streamers and confetti. It wasn’t ‘party’ so much as ‘bon voyage at night’ so I had to amp that up with some paint splatters in brighter colors. I also added a few splatters of the glitter paint to give it a bit of sparkle. I coated the whole painting with Mod Podge to make it shiny and prep it for the vintage Mardi Gras post cards. The post cards I have are indeed vintage (1960s, if I had to make a rough guess) and I had no intention of giving them up. I copied the images onto cardstock and cut the edges with a pair of scrapbooking scissors, creating a reverse scallop. After adding the post cards, I affixed the masks to the piece. The feminine mask is decorated with purple sparkle mesh fabric (a selvedge edge from sequin dot fabric) which I hand-sewed to create a round psuedo-flower. I topped that with an antique gold filligree jewelry finding. The ivory fabric, shot through with pale gold scroll designs shows up very well against the black background. The masculine mask is done in the same fabric. I added some gold mesh fabric over one side and both eyes and affixed a gold braid trim angled over the center of the mask. The last step was to add the beads. I used E-6000 to do this because I needed to believe the beads wouldn’t fall off once the future owner gets the piece home. I figured the best bet was probably E-6000. It’s holding unbelievably well and standing up to a heat test, too. I’m stoked about that. It may not be my favorite piece in the Mask series, but I think it does convey the feel I was hoping to get across. Please enjoy these photos.
“Party Time In New Orleans” ~ Mask Series #6 Mixed Media Artwork by Melody Kittles ~ Photo by J.D. Kittles Photography ~ This piece is for sale. If you are interested, please send me a message. My husband’s photography is also for sale, so please do click on this photo to check out his work. I know I’m biased but he really does have some excellent photographs that would beautifully adorn any room or style.
Here’s a close-up of the masculine mask, showing the gold mesh, the green embroidery, the gold trim and the gold beads.
Here’s a close-up of the feminine mask, showing the purple sparkle mesh flower, the filigree jewelry finding, and the purple bead. You can also see more of the scroll pattern on the mask. This one is embroidered in pale gold.
Thanks for stopping by today. I really enjoy making these. I’ve got two new canvases to create on and I bought some small burlap ‘canvases’ to play with. We’ll see what we will see!
Today’s quote has only a small tie-in to the pictures above. There /is/ singing during Mardi Gras. I’m sure of it. Because we don’t have parties in Louisiana without music. Could one have a real party without music?
“Singing is like a celebration of oxygen.” ~ Bjork