Want a change of scenery over your mantle
or other area of your home
but don't have the budget to invest in a
new painting? Here's how you can make a
faux painting by using an art poster/print.
Select a print that fits your size requirements.
This poster/print came from Hobby Lobby. It is about the size I needed to go in an existing
frame that I had. I had to cut it down some to fit in the frame. Any text will also need to be cut
off to make it look like a painting so keep that in mind when selecting a size of print.
It also helps to "fool the eye" if the print has
a painterly look to it with visible brush strokes.
Cut a piece of foam core board to fit snugly inside the frame.
Cut the print to be the same size as the foam core.
Attach the print to the foam core with spray adhesive.
When that is dry, spray the print with a clear acrylic sealer.
Using spray adhesive keeps the print from getting wrinkles and bumps that regular glue would produce.
Spray adhesive can be a mess...I always do it outside. Wait for a low humidity day to do this step.
The sealer also helps to keep the print from wrinkling when the gel medium is applied.
When the sealer is dry, apply the gel matt medium
(found in the artist section of craft stores or in art stores).
Put the medium on in the same direction that the
brush strokes on your print are going. If your print does not
have a brush-stroke look, apply the medium as if you
were painting the objects on the print, following the
shape of the object with the brush to create stroke looks.
Be sure the matt medium that you buy is transparent. It looks white when you put it on but dries clear.
Artists use the medium to add body and texture to their paints. This is acrylic medium. It dries quickly.
You can apply the matt medium with a brush or a pallette knife.
A pallette knife is also in the artist section of craft stores. This one is just plastic. It came in
a pack of about 4 different sizes for $3. I felt very "artsy" using it. It gives a different look than
brush strokes. I think the artist of the print used a pallette knife to paint some portions of the original.
You can build up layers of the medium,
letting it dry between coats.
It's a personal preference how much/how thick you want the medium to be. Even though I was using
the heavy gel medium, it took several coats to get as much dimension as I wanted on the print.
I have seen some prints in stores with the medium applied too thick (for my taste) and in a haphazard
brush stroke manner that did not look real at all.
You could apply the medium heavier than this if you like. The piece does not scream "look at
my brush strokes!" when you come in the room but up close it does look and even feel like
a real painting.
The "painting's" birch trunks go with the Winter White Decorating look that I have in my living room now. The green
of the background goes well with my wall color.
The birch trees in my area are mostly "River Birch" and
not as large as the ones in the "painting" but I
gathered some fallen branches and bark from our nearby
birches to add to the white urns on the mantle.
After the visual overload of Christmas,
I like to see the spare-ness of branches during
the rest of Winter. Here are a few photos I have
taken recently of the beauty of branches.
The frame that they birches are in was once
brown and smaller in width.
It was on a (real) painting but it looked drab.
To brighten and widen it, I painted it a couple of
shades of white and added some moulding to it.
The brown portion is the original frame. I cut the white moulding with a hand saw and
used construction glue to join the miter cuts together to make a larger frame.
Then the larger frame was glued onto the back of the brown frame.
The arrows point to the joint between
the old and new parts of the frame.
Wood putty and paint can cover
a multitude of sins.