Once again thank you Deby Coles for inspiring so many of us to try new and different pouring techniques. About two months ago I saw Deby’s video called Under The Sea Blue Starburst and it inspired me to make a few nice blue starbursts of my own. I even sold one at a local shop! The technique is not difficult but like most pour paintings, there is always a certain amount of luck involved.
Supplies I Used:
- Nasco Bulk-Krylic in Bright Red, Mars Black
- Spot On Treadmill Oil
- Zinsser Paint Booster
- Swiping tool – for this painting I used an old business card and a craft stick.
I mixed up 15 oz of Red Paint and the ratio was 8oz of paint mixed with 5 oz of water (2/3 paint to 1/3 water). I also added 1 Tablespoon of Zinnser Paint Booster and just before pouring I added 10 drops of Treadmill Belt Lubricant (aka Silicone).
I mixed 16 oz of Black Paint and it was noticeably thicker than the red. The ratio was 12 oz of paint and 4 oz of water (3/4 paint to 1/4 water). I also added 1 Tablespoon of Zinnser Paint Booster to the paint but did not add any silicone.
Description for the Blog
I’m an art teacher at an elementary school in Atlanta, Georgia and I keep a small gallery of my paintings hanging in my classroom. The kids love the bright, colorful paintings and the display allows me to show my students what I like to do when I’m not teaching. Another benefit of having a few pieces of your art on display is that sometimes a colleague will see your work and decide they would like to purchase a painting. That’s exactly what happened a few weeks ago.
A fellow teacher has an adult son who just got his first apartment. She decided that one of my paintings would make a nice housewarming gift since all the walls in his new place were bare. She saw one of my blue starburst paintings and said she would like one like that but in red and black (University of Georgia colors). It had never occurred to me to do the starburst painting in anything other than blue. I was excited to give it a try. After making my first red and black starburst I was really surprised by how much it looked like the flowers on the poinsettia plants that people put out during the holidays. So I call this my Poinsettia Pour.
I don’t want to jinx you but I’m going to go ahead and say it—this painting was really easy to make. You only need two colors. Be sure to mix up the paint so that the black is thicker than the red. I was working on a fairly large canvas so the first thing I did was place a level on the canvas to make sure the surface was nice and flat. When you are ready to add the paint, cover the entire canvas with a nice layer of the black paint. Next pour concentric circles of red on the canvas and pour a ‘bullseye’ of red in the center.
Next all you need to do is make several swipes from the center out to the edges. As you can see in the video I used an old business card for the swiping but I bet a damp paper towel would work as well. Occasionally I needed to add more red to the center for swiping and at one point I added a circle of black paint and swiped that. Once I had the paint in a pleasing starburst pattern I used the torch to bring out cells. The final step was to use a craft stick to “draw” or pull out a pattern of long spidery lines from the center.
Every now and again you will make a painting where everything falls into place quickly and easily. This was one of those paintings and it was really fun to make. Be sure to savor these moments and enjoy that sweet feeling of satisfaction. I like to remind myself of these moments on those days when things don’t click.
What’s next? More Starburst Paintings of course! Perhaps it’s a bit cheesy but it is football season and here in the South we take our college football very seriously. With that in mind it could fun to make a series of starburst paintings using the various colors of various SEC football teams. Go Team!
Steve Shaw is an artist and teacher living in Atlanta, Georgia. His days are spent in the classroom teaching his students the basics of art and self-expression. In the evenings and weekends, he paints. Steve has shown his work in several galleries in the Southeast and has illustrated three children’s books. Recently Steve has discovered acrylic pour painting and is putting all his other projects on hold while he journeys down this artistic road.