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Guest Blog by Sally Meding

Good morning everyone! I have a guest blogger I would like to introduce to you guys. Sally Meding has an extensive painting background and designs jewelry in the unique way that drenches harmonizing colors creating a one of a kind piece of art. 

Sally Meding
Sally is British award-winning artist who is focused on semi-abstract works on both paper and canvas. All her work on paper is designed around color and shape to create eye catching pieces. Her works on canvas are more impressionistic and very textural that tempts the viewers to reach out and touch them. She's been published in Nita Leland's book Confident Color, has appeared on HGTV's That's Clever and on the show she demonstrated how to construct art cards. Sally also has several articles published about her art and cards including a front cover. The Gem and Mineral's Diva is proud to present her to you guys, Sally Meding! Click here to LIKE her on Facebook and click here to visit her website!

Today Sally is going to give you a tutorial on how to work with mini watercolor abstracts. 

Planetary Moon art card

Value of Working with Mini Watercolor Abstracts.          

1.  Of paramount value is refining your design and composition skills! This would apply to all design not just in painting. This has helped me "see" shape, line and color much more clearly.
2.  Mini abstracts provide a small "study" for the basis of a larger painting,  or can be made into Art-cards.
3.  Art-cards can be further collaged as watercolor paper can be easily cut with scissors or X-acto, and mixed-media items can be added. I have found threads, beautiful ribbons and flat pieces of turquoise or natural pearls work well especially as focal points.
4.  Recycle the croppings from larger and/or unsuccessful paintings. Do not discard any your off-cuts!
5.  Art-cards provide an easily transportable and cost effective  (but not necessarily time effective) product to sell at art shows, that may tempt customers to consider buying your larger pieces of art.
6.  They are great to give as thank yous and birthday cards, as they promote your art-work and provide a personal "one-of-kind" message.
7.  The standard-sized art-cards (5x7") can be framed into a ready-made frames. These mini original art-pieces could spurn a series of small works on paper....

Mind-Bender Wavelength 15x 14.5 watercolor on D'Arches paper
"Mind-bender Wavelength" (15x14.5") Watercolor on D'Arches 140lb paper.
This watercolor was cropped and then reworked to make the design more effective. 
  • The off-cuts were used in the art-card "Planetary moons" above left.
  • This art-card may inspire another larger painting.
  • This is one of my favorite art-cards, so I might frame it!

As a special feature for the Gem Diva, Sally included two unique art cards with gemstones in them. 

Christmas W
"Christmas weaving". Mixed media art-card with natural dyed pearls (gold and red).  The gold pearls have beautiful iridescent nacre. Strips of watercolor papers or rice paper were painted, stamped or splattered with gold acrylic paint and then woven into each other to form a modern cruciform shape. Gold lame fabric was added above the black paper (focal point) featuring the beautiful natural pearls, and threads of the lame were pulled to provide a gold flowing effect. The design effect was green against red and hard/shiny pearls versus soft flowing lame. These are a labor of love to make but very popular!

Turquoise Beauty
"Turquoise beauty"   This mixed media art-card features textural acrylics on thick strips of canvas paper whose colors support those in the natural Arizonian turquoise stone (and its matrix). Their flat shape made them perfect for mounting on cards to be sent in the mail. The design effect was extremely textural, shiny natural stone against matte textured acrylics in analogous colors.

Here are some more Art-cards that Sally's designed more recently....(design information in their captions)
"Rose Galaxy" 
Design: Z-shape format,
predominantly curvilinear,
Bright colors against greys,
warm palette.

Design: T-format, geometric
 cool neutrals, diagonal
direction, bright color 
against greys.

Design: geometric with organic
focal point. Pyramidal format
(on its side)
"Fall into Winter" 
Design: Frame-in-frame format
Curvilinear, warm leaf against 
cool background.

"At Surf's Edge" 
Design: High horizon format,
predominantly curvilinear,
cool dominant.
"Beach-scape II " 
Design: High horizon format
Predominantly geometric,
dark against light shapes

"Rose Galaxy" art-card was produced from a cropped giclee preliminary color-sample of a larger watercolor, which in turn was inspired from an abstracted black and white art-card!
Here is the larger watercolor painting from which the art-card evolved.....You can probably find the exact portion of the painting which was tested for color correctness during the giclee process!

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About Johnna Crider

The Gems and Mineral Diva is also known as Johnna Sabri. Johnna learned how to wire wrap gemstones into fashionable jewelry by Grammy Award winning guitarist, Daryl Thompson, son of Eli Lucky Thompson. This site is dedicated to Daryl as he did more than teach Johnna his gift of jewelry design, he became a father to her.
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