Sunday, May 4, 2014

Mexican Spirits

day of the dead art by SchulmanArt
Day of the Dead Art by SchulmanArt

Mixed Media Skull Challenge by @schulmanArt, Miriam Schulman

One of my art goals for the year was to start submitting art to art magazines I read for the chance to be published. Cloth Paper Scissors offers a reader challenge each month. Since mixed media encompasses a large range of art making from stamp carving to jewelry making I don't always have the skills or inspiration to participate in every challenge.  A few months ago, the challenge was to create a 6x6" mixed media canvas of a Day of the Dead inspired skull. This project captured my attention right away.
Want to save on this art right now? let me email you the latest coupon

Day of the Dead printed t-shirt
Day of the Dead printed t-shirt for women.
You can also get one in kids size HERE or in a plus size HERE

Día de los Muertos

Día de los Muertos, also known as the Day of the Dead, is a Mexican holiday that has gained more attention throughout the 50 states in recent years. The holiday remembers those who have passed on before us and I love the colorful art that symbolizes this tradition. You've probably seen a calavera, which is a skull that has been decorated with flowers and art.

art journal by schulmanArt
I had been using the techniques in my art journal.
I cover the page with washi tape and then fill in
the negative space with color.


For this mixed media skull, I took inspiration from the Dia des Los Muertos makeup. I love the flower embellishments that women paint on their faces for the holiday. I was sure to use bright colors. The technique is one that I have been perfecting in my art journal whereby I lay a patchwork of washi tape on a bare canvas. I then seal it with clear acrylic gesso and drew a skull using a Sharpie paint pen. The skull was painted with a mixture of fluid acrylic and acrylic glazing medium. Flowers and embellishments were added with acrylic paint. I love the result and hope to have this artwork published.

Sharing is Scary!

An optional part of the challenge was to submit the art to their online reader challenge site. I was a bit trepidations about sharing the art I hoped to publish.. I was worried that others would copy me. However, if you look at their reader challenge site, you will see my art stands apart. If anyone is copying me, they are not sharing their versions of my art here. I posted this art so long ago I nearly forgot about it. I also did not list the painting for sale on etsy, because if they choose it I have to send the magazine the original. I did create some products with the design in my cafepress shop.

Almost published.... (what a compliment!)

Yesterday morning as I was lying in bed flipping though my emails, I stumbled upon my own artwork in my inbox. What a delightful shock to see my art reproduced on the Cloth Paper Scissors blog and e-newsletter! This was a HUGE compliment to be featured on the magazine's blog and included in their newsletter. They published online to remind readers of the challenge and entice more folks to enter.
Day of the Dead Art on a printed totebag!


You can do it too!

Looking for a Mexican themed art project? Although Day of the Dead is six months away try your hand at a mixed media skull for Cloth Paper Scissors magazine. The magazine invites readers to submit their own mixed-media skull! The rules from the magazine say: Create a two- or three-dimensional Día de los Muertos-inspired skull using favorite mixed-media techniques and supplies. Entries should be 6"x6" (or 6"x6"x6"), and must weigh less than 13 ounces (one submission per person). The deadline is May 9: Click here for the rules and instructions on how to enter. Winners will be featured in an upcoming issue of "Cloth Paper Scissors." I want to be featured, but I would love to see your art too!

Other blog posts you might like:


Do you like a challenge? Do challenges inspire you or scare you?

PS.  A number of you have emailed me asking if they could purchase a print of this Day of the Dead art. You can use this listing and say "dead of the dead" in notes to seller section.