Step By Step

How did you do that? That's a question I get asked a lot.

This demonstration uses two portraits: one that I just completed of Omarosa Manigault Newman and one of Anthony Scaramucci that I just started. The Scaramucci portrait is on the campaign lawn sigh. I had a thick piece of plywood that someone else used for "art." That was the base for Manigault Newman's portrait.

1. Find a board or frame to use as my base.

I found a frame at the local animal shelter tag sale.

2. If it's a frame, attach a substrate or canvas to the frame.

The frame was slightly bigger than the lawn sign. To remedy this problem, I added pieces from another lawn sign. After nailing the sign pieces to the frame, I used everyday trash that had some stickiness on the back to mend the seam. That's what you see at the bottom of this image.

3. Grid the surface.

I don't have a yardstick at my winter studio. I took a piece of wood and marked 1-inch increments. This is what I use to grid the surface.

The image to the right shows the surface with the grid. You can see that I labeled the inches at the bottom and right side of the board.

4. Make a sketch of the subject onto the grid.

It's hard to see what I did in this image. I outlined the shape of the head, eyes, nose, ears, chin, and some wrinkles on his forehead.

Also, I numbered the inches at the top. This piece is about 19 X 24 inches. It's easier to have the inch markings in various places. Then I don't I have to run my eyes or fingers up and down the surface to figure out where I am.

5. Apply materials to the surface using hot glue, glue dots, glue stick, and other adhesives.

In the image to the right, you can see that I put parts of a potato chip bag around the head as the background. For the hair (black part), I cut up a low-pressure inflator hose that someone was no longer using. A low-pressure inflator hose is a part of one's scuba diving equipment. This one got worn out. Rather than throw it away, I'm using it in art.

NOTE: The above images are from the Scaramucci piece. The images below are from the Manigault Newman portrait.

Here's an image of Manigualt partially completed. The green and yellow area below the nose is the artwork I covered.

6. When the image is finished the image, tidy up the surface.

I remove stray glue worms and making sure everything is glued down properly.

7. Coat the surface and sides with thinned PVA glue. Let it dry. Put on another layer of PVA.

The image to the left is of the first coat of PVA. The dark area on the right was very porous. The glue sank in very quickly.

I have to ensure that I get the glue into all the nooks and crannies.

That's it. I don't add any paint or other material to change the colors. All the colors come from the found and recycled materials and everyday trash that I use as my medium.


Size: 14" wide by 19.75" Tall. Not yet titled or priced.