Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Finnabair Style 4 x 4 Journal Page

Hello everyone, Deb here for our Mixed Media Wednesday post here at Mixed Media Mojo.  I thought I'd share with you today how I made this Finnabair style 4 x 4 page.

One of the mixed media groups that I belong to (Mixed Media Studio on Yahoo Groups) is doing an ongoing swap where we are trading pages to compile into a mixed media techniques journal.  This month's technique was to create a page in the style of Anna Dabrowska, better known as Finnabair to her many fans and followers.  Although I've long admired Anna's style, I'd never attempted it before but now that I have I am hooked, what fun!  While making this page I also took the opportunity to incorporate some recycled jewelry and metal bits and bobs, so it fit in perfectly with our current challenge here at Mixed Media Mojo, Recycle with the twist of using metal.

I started out by cutting a 4" x 4" piece of heavy chipboard (I used a children's board book from the $1 store, yes that is Count Von Count and Big Bird pictured there!) and after sanding the page I coated it with gesso and gathered up a selection of metal items, old jewelry and charms, etc. from my stash.  I didn't end up using all of them but it was helpful to have lots of items to choose from as I composed my page.

I then adhered bits of tissue wrap, napkins, lace, ribbons, thread and coffee stained cheesecloth to the gesso covered board with Distress collage medium.  Once it was dry, I added some heavy bodied gesso through an assortment of stencils here and there and did some random stamping with Jet Black archival ink.

I left the board to dry overnight, then sprayed it with inks and stains in browns, greens and blues.  While waiting for the sprays to dry, I found a focal image online for my page (this beautiful young woman's image was courtesy of Magic Moonlight Studio) and backed the printed image with some heavy card for stability.  I positioned the focal image on the page where I wanted it to be and started to build the elements up around her.  I used the metal elements as pictured above and also added some paper flowers and buttons from my stash and adhered them all with E6000 glue.

Once the E6000 was dry, I painted all of the elements with gesso.  I then masked off the focal image and sprayed the 4 x 4 page again with the same colours of sprays, making sure that all of the gessoed elements were evenly covered.

As a finishing touch, I added some gold gilding spray to a few of the elements, added some faceted flat back gems here and there and then added a shadow line around the outside of the adhered elements with some black acrylic paint for contrast.

Thanks so much for stopping by today and I hope that you have been inspired to give Finnabair's style a try; it is so much fun and the results are quite amazing, truly an example of the whole being greater than the sum of it's parts!  I also hope that you will join in our April challenge

and do some recycling of your own!  Have fun and happy creating,

Deb xo


  1. That's really beautiful Deb! So many lovely little elements to look at and enjoy. Thank you for sharing it with us.

  2. This is super cool, Deb, and I love your fantastic colors!

  3. Awesome project. This looks like a good way to use up a lot of odds and ends too

  4. Wonderful to see the ongoing photos and close ups. Brilliant work.
    Julie x

  5. Oh, what a breathtaking piece Deb! Stunning design and I love the colours! Hugs!

  6. I love, love, love this, it's amazing.
    xxx Hazel.

  7. Wow - you make it sound so easy to do - what a wonderful piece Deb!! Julia xx

  8. Thank you for the amazing tutorial, Deb! Your composition is stunning and the coloring is gorgeous! Well done!

  9. Thank you for the amazing tutorial, Deb! Your composition is stunning and the coloring is gorgeous! Well done!