It's been a while since I've sat down to create something just for the sake of creating. There is always some sort of "bigger plan" in mind these days…making things to immediately sell or list in my shop, to give as a gift, to reach some sort of self-imposed deadline. All of those things tend to be both satisfying and draining at the same time.
This past week, I finally sat down to paint—which is something I very (very, very) rarely do. Mostly because painting, in general, seems ridiculously intimidating to me. I took two painting classes in college, and both of them ended up making me really stressed out and sweaty and frustrated and kind of turned me off about painting for all eternity. But I've recently come across so many charming wooden signs featuring casually scrawled cursive and printing, and all of a sudden painting a simple sign seemed like something I may be capable of.
So, I went for it. And I'm actually quite pleased with the result. Who knew?
I feel the need to confess that during one trip to the beach last summer, I saw a couple random pieces of wood that someone must have left behind. I kept eyeing them, feeling my hoarder/crafty-lady mentality kicking in. Before we packed up and left the beach, I was all, "Jay? Don't judge me. I'm going to take these pieces of wood. Act casual."
He must be used to my weirdness at this point, because it didn't faze him at all. I tucked them into my bag like it was a completely natural thing to do, and the two pieces of random beach wood have been tucked into a corner of my crafting nook ever since. I used one piece as a display for some new hair clips I'm selling at a local shop, but this smaller piece has been waiting for the perfect project. And I finally found one!
First, I painted the wood with one coat of white acrylic paint. I used Claudine Hellmuth Studio in Blank Canvas. I decided to use just one coat, because I like to see some of the color and natural texture of the wood through the paint. Personal preference!
Second, I wrote the phrase "I love you" in cursive (over and over and over) with an ultra fine point Sharpie. I didn't worry too much about the letters being perfectly balanced or even…I like to think that the point is to keep the handwritten quality, and to not worry too much about it looking just-so.
Finally, I used a teeny-tiny paintbrush and some black acrylic paint to carefully paint over the letters. This was the most time consuming part of the whole project, and it was like discovering a whole new level of fine motor skills—believe you me. But, again, the whole point is not to be perfect, but to just do it. And I'm glad I did. I rather like how it turned out.
For now, this little lopsided piece of painted wood is hanging out above our bed, but I'd love to add it to some sort of wall collage in our living room…once I get around to actually making a wall collage at all. We shall see!