By Alina Bradford
For years artists have used all kinds of creative objects to “sponge paint” interesting shapes, textures, and designs onto their canvases. Not only is it fun to use things to paint with that you wouldn’t normally, it also adds interest to your work. Here are some ideas you can use to create your own effects.
Painting With Plastic Wrap
Many artists use crumpled plastic wrap, either dipped into paint and dabbed onto the canvas, or dry and dabbed onto the wet canvas. This makes wild, marble-like marks.
Creating With Toothpicks and Sticks
These can be pulled through wet paint to create blades of grass or grain in wood.
Sponge Painting With Sea Sponge
I have seen many watercolor artist use sea sponges to create irregular surfaces like sand, rocks, and such by using the sponge dry and dabbing off odd bits of wet paint.
Wet with paint it can be used to make leaves on trees or bushes.
Old Toothbrushes for Texture
This is a very popular tool to create speckles on eggs, sand, and rocks. Just load it with paint and run your thumb over the bristles while the brush is pointed at the canvas. This is also a creative way to paint rain.
Painting With Rags
Rags can be used a lot like plastic wrap, but with a different result. The look really depends on what kind of fabric you use. Try not to use something that is really absorbent. It usually makes a messy blob. Try finding rags with a deep weave for the best effect.
Remember, using odds and ends in your paintings takes practice. You may be surprised at how useful they can be!