Hard to believe it’s been an entire year since I began my adventure. As of last Friday, I’m finished…and now I’m ready to lead YOU on an adventure. In the next few posts, I want to familiarize you with some really cool products and how to use them.

Let’s start with some of the Golden products that I love. There are so many fantastic texture gels, and you may have heard of some of them or even used them. How do I love thee, Tar Gel? Let’s look.


Tar Gel is an amazingly stringy little creature. He looks very normal at first glance. So normal in fact, you’d be tempted to just open the jar, dip in your brush and just stroke him onto something. You can do that, too, but there are other ways to use him and if you know how, he’s a lot more fun. Here’s what you do:

Use the handle of your brush (or a palette knife works well, too). Stick it down into the jar two or three inches. Then try a dry run by pulling the brush handle straight up and out of the gel to see what happens. The Gel should drizzle off the end of that handle like silly string. Just like this:

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You can adjust the width of the drizzle by how high you hold your handle from your surface, by how much you pick up and also by how quickly you move it as you drizzle.

Ya, this is fun but why would we want to drizzle it? Here are two photos in which I’ve used it all drizzly. Can you spot it? It looks rather like a string just lying on the painting. This works exceptionally well for the Pods, but also makes great texture in the Nun painting. (If you think there’s Nun in there, you’re wrong. There’s a lot…he, he…I’m back).

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Just like anybody else, Tar Gel has his little idiosyncrasies. For example, when he gets all stirred up he gets into a tither. As I mentioned earlier, you can just apply Tar Gel with a brush straight from the jar. It makes a really cool top layer for a painting – like a rock hard candy surface. OR you can mix color into it, OR it is great medium to use for making Image Transfers, too. It has a lot of uses, too many to mention in this one post. The thing is, any stirring motion or disturbance of the gel causes bubbles to form. Hence, when you stroke it onto a surface it will have tiny bubbles in it (sing it Don Ho) that can burst and leave little craters. However, if you pop them before the gel dries they will fill in automatically. Misting them with a tiny bit of rubbing alcohol is one way to pop them. Now this may be more than you ever wanted to know about Tar Gel, but there is actually a lot more.

OH! I ALMOST FORGOT to tell you one of my favorite things to do with Tar Gel. It’s rather sticky even after it’s dried. How can you tell if it’s dry? Milky when wet, it gets clear once it’s dry. When dry, you can iron metallic foil over the top of it. The iron softens the gel slightly and causes the foil to stick. Any foil seems to work, although the one I use is from Dharma Trading Company. http://www.dharmatrading.com/paints/icraft-decofoil.html

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This is really great for adding a bit of punch to a painting.

And now, I want to include this special $100 off coupon for those of you who have signed up for the “Jumpstart Your Imagination” creative Mixed Media workshop (all new projects) on Madeline Island. Please note that the deadline on the coupon is Leap Day, Feb. 29th! The flyer for this class is immediately below. Then, below that is the coupon for you.


CLICK HERE for the coupon!

Thanks so much for reading. It feels good to be back and I hope to be here again next week.


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