Spray Paint Nature Art

How do you like that title? Pretty snazzy, if I do say so myself.

Well, back in July I participated in something called The Pintester Movement. I attempted to cut bottles in half with yarn, acetone, and – most importantly – fire. Well it kind of worked:

Cutting Glass With FireBut it also kind of failed. And then that little cup thing sat on that table for a few…weeks? months?…and a cat knocked it off and it broke. I gave exactly zero f*cks, for the record.

I’ve mentioned before that the art gallery is depressingly bare this month. As in…there is no art in it. It’s our first attempt at a themed show, too, so that’s not promising. Since we’re doing “found object art” I thought “Hey! Now this is something I could do!” and immediately went to Pinterest to find something that would be cheap, easy, and I would be okay with either selling or keeping in my house. I found this:

Image from Pinterest

That sure is tiny, isn’t it? Anyway – the link is broken. I didn’t try to hard to find a source, though, because it seemed straightforward. Paint a canvas one color, put a plant on it, spray paint it another color. Okay, I definitely didn’t try hard. Here is a YouTube video. It took me like 2 seconds. The step I missed was pressing the leaves so they would lay flat. DUH!

So let’s just dive on in to this debacle, shall we?

Here are my canvases after the base coat of spray paint. I chose Hammered Copper and a basic brown. I decided to do one of them with inverted colors, just to spice things up a bit.

Spray Paint Nature Art

And then I proceeded to forget to take any more pictures. I also waited until it was nearly dark to start doing this. My next picture is after I’ve already painted the top. Which…you didn’t really miss much. I took some hedge clippers and hacked some branches off of various trees in our yard, and then held them down on the canvas with rocks.

Spray Paint Nature Art

So there were a couple things I definitely did wrong. #1: I didn’t press the leaves first. That, in hindsight, is a very important step. I truly regret not doing this. #2: I went over it with the brown too thoroughly. Less is more, they always say. Less. Is. More.

Here are the results:

Spray Paint Nature Art

 I think the biggest issue was the lack of stems. They weren’t flat against the canvas, so the spray paint got up underneath them. AND DON’T TELL ME THESE LOOK GOOD BECAUSE I COVERED THEM UP.

Yes, I started over. I spray painted back over these three with the copper spray paint. That was running out. And doesn’t cover brown very well. I had to buy another can. I have grown to hate this project.

Anyway, I tried to press the leaves, but I got impatient. This is due by Sunday and Mr. T and I are going out of town tonight. We won’t be back until late Sunday so I had no time. No time! I also still haven’t done the inverted copper-over-brown one, either. You’ll just have to come back sometime next week to see that one. If I were more clever I would think I did that on purpose to get people to read my blog. I did not. I’m just lazy.

So, yeah – here are the second attempts:

Spray Paint Nature Art Spray Paint Nature Art

(Notice the stem is still missing from the fat leaves one. Don’t get me started…) I don’t know if I like them any better than the first go around. The brown is lighter because I only did one pass. Like pretty much everything I’ve attempted to do from Pinterest, I finally just said “WHATEVER!” and called it done. I figure if they don’t sell we can hang them up in our Steampunk great room. That…doesn’t exist yet. But whatever.

I do have a question for you – one of my friends lent me a gold paint pen, because I was thinking about adding the stems that way. Do you think I should continue to mess with these, or just call them done and stop fiddling with them, making them worse??


38 thoughts on “Spray Paint Nature Art

  1. Leave it. It was a good learning experience. :-) but really, it’s easy and cool. I has a giant surprise. Once I decorate it….. ;-) so there will be SOMETHING from me this time.

    • You’re probably right. I’m afraid if I keep messing with it, it will just get worse.

      Can’t wait to see what you’ve done!! 8D

  2. I agree with the other comment. Leave it. Anytime I try to “fix” something more then once it inevitably gets worse and worse. Just take what you have learned and try it again later when canvases are on sale at the craft store.

    I do like the colors you used though. Perfect for Fall.

    Have a good one.
    Cherin// masterfullyme.com

    • Very true. Maybe one day I’ll try again…but probably only if these sell. I don’t need a ton of these things laying around my house. lol!

      And I’m not telling my husband about you liking the colors – I wanted to do silver and black. He kept pestering me to do brown and copper. >.<

  3. I love them! I have these on my Pinterest craft board and have never gotten around to it. Thank you for trying it!

  4. I like how they turned out! And I don’t think you need to go back in and draw the stem. I’d probably get too gold-paint-pen happy & add more than I needed.

  5. Is it terrible that I thought the first go round kind of looked like x-rays on intestines?

    The second batch are much more attractive, and less innards-like. I especially like the softness of the pine/fern looking one.

    • It’s pine. :)

      And I did not see intestines until you said something… I guess I could have used them in a haunted house? ‘Tis the season.

  6. Speaking as a person who can NEVER leave a craft alone, like ever, DON’T DO IT! I can guarantee you–from years of research–that you will hate yourself and your craft if you mess with it. Also, next time, you should totally do one of these with the hedge clippers. That would make an awesome silhouette . . . you know, if you don’t mind your hedge clippers being painted brown and possible not really working anymore. SEE? When you don’t leave stuff alone, it just goes terribly, terribly wrong.

    • Ha! Brilliant! But, yeah….maybe when we buy new clippers and no longer need these so much. We only have about four tools for yard work – my husband tries to use a sword instead of clippers about 60% of the time.

  7. Just walk away. I think the one on the left (it looks fern-ish, but I suck at plant identification, so what do I know) looks really cool, and I love the colors you chose, especially how they turned out in your revised version.

  8. I’m going to go ahead and say it- I think they look really cool. They might look different up close and personal, but in the pictures they look like old fades nature photos, which I think is neat.

    • Sometimes when I look at them I like them, and sometimes I don’t. I’d probably like them more if someone else had done them. That’s how my brain works.

  9. I like them, for what it’s worth…which isn’t much, because unless you sell at Walmart prices, I couldn’t buy them. But I WOULD buy them if they were, but they aren’t so I can’t!

    • I haven’t even thought about prices….I’m pretty sure if anyone even offers something for them I’ll be so excited someone wants one that I’ll let them buy it. lol! Logically, I would prefer it at least cover expenses. But then I’d have to try to do the math on the expenses and…ehhhhh…

  10. I really, really, REALLY love them. They remind me of Autumn, and misty mornings with the light on the leaves (which in Australia are mostly still green, so I pretend they’re lovely colours because I don’t get out much).
    In short, they came out a lot better than you think they did.

  11. Okay, I may be the only one who liked the first batch better! I do like all you’ve done – and I agree with your husband about the colors, sorry! :)
    As a LONG time Girl Scout & Boy Scout leader (and a craftie all my years), I’ll tell you how we did them – individual leaves. Arrange them into a branch shape, if you want, or just individually. Without the stem the leaves lie flatter. You could put the stem in separately, I guess. On the stem everything is lifted just a bit and allows the paint to blur underneath.
    If the lack of stems really bothers you that much, then go for it with the gold pen. I think they look just fine, but that’s me. It might ruin them; it might just make you happy!

    • I took pictures of the first ones outside, with evening sunlight. And the new ones I took in my kitchen, at night. So it’s hard to compare them, really… I do think the skinny one with the little leaves looked better the first go around. Oh, well. What can you do?

      And taking them off the stem is brilliant! Especially since the stem didn’t show up, anyway. >.< I tried using rolled up painters tape (see the next post) as a stem, but it worked TOO well and is way copper-y-er (that's a word) than the other bits of it and kind of looks weird. I can't win!

Tell me how you REALLY feel: