Eileen McKenna Art & Design

Watercolor Art | Creative Inspiration to help you be creative on a regular basis


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St. Patrick’s Day Flair and DIY Sign

I’m proud to be Irish and like to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day and decorate the house to celebrate. My new leprechaun illustration is available on hats, T-shirt’s, and pins in my Zazzle shop!

St. Patrick’s Day #patricks #day #pins #hat

Create an Irish Blessing sign with a downloadable pdf in this blog post. The blog post includes tips on transferring the poem to a wooden surface.

Irish Blessing Free Download. Info on Citrasolv transfers.


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Some of my favorite Fall projects…

fallmantle
Happy Thanksgiving! My Fall mantle has become a mini gallery of some of my favorite Fall projects: sunflowers, Fall leaf, watercolor and ink leaves and the “give Thanks” Thanksgiving sign. I think tomorrow I need to start on some Winter/Christmas projects!

Enjoy your day with family and friends!
Eileen


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I’m thankful I finished this project!

givethanksfinal
I finally got around to finishing this. I started it back in the summer, when I painted the background for two signs. One sign became my “beach lover” sign, which I finished over a month ago. For this sign, I wasn’t sure what to do with it, what words to paint on it – Fall harvest? With Thanksgiving getting closer and closer, I decided on “give thanks.”

Two years ago Thanksgiving took on a whole new meaning. My siblings, parents, cousins and my aunt were all affected by Superstorm Sandy. They all had major renovations to tackle and some of them couldn’t even live in their homes. Living 20 minutes away, our home was unaffected. So Thanksgiving 2012 was here at our house. We hosted around 40 people. I wasn’t stressed at all. I knew everyone would be happy, just being together in a warm, dry place. There was no need to sweat the small stuff. Although they suffered damage to their homes, everyone was safe and that was definitely reason to give thanks.

Technique:
I used the same technique for the lettering as last time. Using the side of the pencil, I quickly colored on the back of my printout. Then, I flipped the printout over and taped it to my sign. With firm pressure, I traced the letters on the printout, using a Nintendo DS stylus pen. I peeled the printout off and, using the light pencil marks and indentation as a guide, I painted the letters. After the letters were dry I added a little white for effect.

thanks1thanks1b    thanks2a thanks2thankspaintthanksalmost


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Beach Lover Wooden Sign

beachlover
I bought a piece of wood and had it cut into pieces at the hardware store. Using acrylic paints – teal and white – I added streaks of both and blended them, to get achieve a beachy, sun bleached look.

Wooden signs
I set up the lettering on the computer and outlined it. Last time around I cut custom stencils which was a lot of work. This time I found advice on hand lettering. I laid the printout on the wood and using a hard stylus pen (from my kid’s old DS), traced the outline of the letter. When I was finished I could see the outline impression on the wood.

Following the outline impression on the wood, I painted the letters black. When they were dry, I painted white steaks over the letters with a very dry brush to capture the distressed look. I’m happy with the results!

Click here to learn more about how I painted the background.


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Irish Blessing pdf download and Citrasolv transfer info.

Irish Blessing Free Download. Info on Citrasolv transfers.
Download the Irish blessing pdf here: maytheroad and the mirror image here: maytheroadmirror.

Visit my Etsy shop for printable coloring pages:
Printable Ireland St. Patrick's Day Coloring Pages make a Coloring Book Kids Class Activity Digital Download is a great way to teach kids about Ireland. Color and fold to create a book! Perfect for St. Patrick's Day.
downloadable clipart:
St. Patrick's Day Watercolor clipart | leprechauns pot of gold rainbow shamrocks

and invitation borders:
St. Patrick's Day shamrocks invitation border printable invitation card

Order St. Patrick’s Day flair in my Zazzle shop!

St. Patrick’s Day #patricks #day #pins #hat

When I read about Citrasolv on a blog, I was very excited. The idea that I could design anything I wanted on the computer and transfer my artwork onto wood, without messy stencils and paint, was very appealing. I came across a cool piece of wood that was originally the top of a plant stand and painted it green with accents of white.

green sign
I layed out the Irish Blessing text on the computer. I flipped the text, so it was the mirror image, and printed it. To do a Citrasolv transfer you need a laser printer, not an inkjet. I positioned the printout on my sign, (text side facing down), taped it so it wouldn’t move, and applied the Citrasolv to the back of the paper with a cotton ball. Using a spoon, I rubbed the back of the paper, trying to rub the entire poem.
citrasolv

My first try didn’t go so well:
blur

Things worked better on my second try. A few spots blurred a little and some areas came out light, because I didn’t adequately rub everything, but it gives it an aged look.

Tips for doing Citrasolv transfers

  • Use a laser printer
  • Don’t do the whole poem at once. It’s easier to work in sections.
  • Rub every area of your design.
  • Don’t use too much Citrasolv.
  • Raw wood works better than the smooth surface of acrylic paint.

finalcitrasolv
For more on citrasolv transfer read the post that inspired me.

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