Mixed Media Skull Canvas

Mixed Media Skull Canvas

Hello Creatives!

Do you have unfinished projects laying around your creative space? I totally do and recently I decided to drag some of them out and look at them with new eyes.

One project I found was a canvas that was started with just hymnal pages adhered down with matte gel. That’s it.

I wonder what I intended with it? I have no idea so I decided to go in this direction…

Hymnal Skull Canvas

Why a Pink Mixed Media Skull?

Why not?!? LOL…I guess that is only part of it. If you follow me at all you know that I love sugar skulls, but as I am working on learning now to draw faces, in some ways it makes sense to learn to draw the underlying bone structures of the human face. It’s a good first step because you can learn the proportions of the face, how to turn the face different ways and work on shadows and highlights with all of the “window dressing” of facial features.


For this project I used these stencils from The Crafter’s Workshop:


TCW567s-Complicated Hearts


TCW626s-Carte Postale

TCW554-Butterfly Collage

Other Materials:

Golden High Flow Acrylics

Master’s Touch Acrylic Paints (Neon)

DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics

Liquitex Matte Gel Medium

Fine Line Sharpie

Hymnal Pages (vintage)

Liquitex Paint Marker (neon orange)

How to…

Here is a step by step view of how I did this project:

Start with your hymnal base and add fun drips of acrylic paints. I used Golden High Flow Acrylic paints.

Make sure that each color dries before adding the next. This will allow your colors to maintain their integrity and not mix together.

Golden High Flow Acrylics

Continue adding paint drips and splatters.

Golden High Flow and DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylics

Using IRESISTibles by Imagine Crafts in Tuxedo Black and a The Crafter’s Workshop stencils Butterfly Collage and Elliptic, I added dimension to my background.

The Crafter's Workshop stencil

I drew my skull on a piece of copy paper and then scanned it into my computer so that I could scale it  to be a better fit for my canvas size.

{Here is a link to my Minimal Skull Sketch if you would like to use it for a project!!}

I used Liquitex Matte Gel Medium to adhere it down.

Minimal Skull Sketch-Free Printable

Next came the paint! To achieve my shadows, I laid down my base layers of grays and blacks first using DecoArt Media Fluid Acrylic in Carbon Black and Titanium White.

Skull Sketch Free Printable

For my pink, I chose a fairly transparent neon pink acrylic paint by Master’s Touch so that my shadows would show through. I also began to add some neon green paint (also by Master’s Touch.)

Hobby Lobby Master's Touch Neon Acrylic Paint

There is no perfect way to tell you how add the layers. Just keep playing with it. Other than the base grays and blacks, I kept to only 4 colors for my skull: neon pink, neon green, neon purple and white for highlights.

Mixed Media Skull Canvas

Once I got my skull how I liked, I:

(1) Added a “halo” of watered down black paint so that my skull will POP off my canvas

(2) Emphasized certain lines on my skull with my black sharpie.

(3) Added some fun hexagon stamps with my green paint (my “stamp” is actually a silicone pot holder!)

(4) Used modeling paste and The Crafter’s Workshop stencils to add some script as background texture and as my title.

Here are some closeups of the finished project.

Mixed Media Skull

20160315_183011246_iOS 20160315_183017651_iOS The Crafter's Workshop

Closing Thoughts…

I hope you enjoyed today’s project as much as I enjoyed making it.

I hope it will challenge you to try something new and be fearless!



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