Jungle | WhiteRosesArt.com
Jungle by Heather Miller


Year: 2016
Size: 8″ x 24″ x ~1.25″

Jungle was made using acrylic paint, oil pastels, glass beads, and tissue paper on canvas.


The Story:

Jungle was a piece that started without any clear plan or vision.  I was scheduled to give a demonstration on adding texture to art not long after this piece’s creation.  I wanted to bring several examples of finished pieces with me to show off various techniques.  When I started this piece, that was really my only goal.

Creating a piece like this is extremely fun because it’s relatively easy to create.  I always start by applying a base coat of paint to the canvas.  I planned on doing this piece in a variety of blues and greens originally so I used a teal.  Once dry, I applied a PVA glue (acid free glue) to the piece.  I tore up two sheets of very wrinkled tissue paper and set the pieces in the glue.  After those were dried, I applied some Liquitex’s Glass Beads in random stripes.  Once those were dried I was able to start painting.

My plan was to paint this piece blues and greens but, as you can see, that didn’t happen.  I had recently finished two other pieces, both of which had blue as a dominant color, so doing yet another piece in that color scheme didn’t feel right.  After painting the background with a variety of greens, I decided it needed some bold accents.  The areas where I applied the glass beads I painted a metallic gold.  There was still something missing.  I grabbed my oil pastels and rubbed a yellow one over the wrinkles of the background.  I used a black one on the glass beads.  It’s a super easy way to add dimension to a piece without any real skill.

Creating abstract art is a lot of fun because there are not rules and you can’t really make mistakes.  That’s also where the challenge lies.  Because there are no rules and it won’t end up looking like anything, it’s easy to suffer from “creative block” when doing these pieces.  You just have to keep at it, knowing that you might make a lot of “happy accidents” along the way, but you really can’t mess it up.