Art Panel: From ugly duckling to ballerina swan

Ballerina swan in roses

In september I had the amazing opportunity to attend a workshop by Nika Rouss (aka Nika in Wonderland)  at ArtChicks Studio. Since the site only updates the newest workshop, I'm sharing the flyer that was posted about it.
Image may contain: 6 people

I attended the Saturday midday workshop and I honestly didn't know what to expect, except awesomeness, because Nika is pretty awesome! The workshop was "intuitive painting with roses" (like this video) and this is how I started my canvas
rose experiment
We took some modeling paste mixed with paints and the pallete knife to form the image of a rose bouquet. But there were some well unforeseen circumstances in the day - it was hot and humid and the "peeks" of the roses would not dry.  So it took a chunk of the lesson time to dry which was unfortunate. In the end we had to hurry to finish up the piece and this was what I went home with (next to awesome times with the other workshop participants and Nika, of course!)

rose experiment

The end result I had made was really not to my liking and I worked on it at home to create something that was more true to my own style and imagination. As Nika said, There are no mistakes! If you don't like it, Gesso over it and try again! So that is what I did at home.

Ballerina swan in roses
I turned the canvas to the left and took apart the drywall tape and applied some heavy coats of black gesso over it. Then started to add some colors and layers of paints with Deco Art Media and paper Artsy fluid acrylics paints. But alas I forgot to photograph the coloring process (I was in a really good flow!) but I do have images of the next stages when I used the Alpahbet Spagetti stencil from Ady Skunner (decoarts mixed media)

Ballerina swan in roses
I rolled on some lighter paint over the stencil.

Ballerina swan in roses
And this was the colorful result. So much better and happier at this point! I wanted to tone it down just a little bit so I glazed some blue paint over and around the edges.

Ballerina swan in roses
The blue glaze made the roses pop out more and this is where I was fully happy with the background. So then I added my focal point.

Ballerina swan in roses
The ballerina swan (a magazine cut out)! I added more depth to the piece with caran dáche neo oil pastels and spatters with a white posca paint pen. The sentiment is a part of a Viva Las VegaStamps! sentiment ...

Ballerina swan in roses
"tired of trying to cram into society's beige square holes" I thought it was powerful to add this piece of text over the square shaped drywall tape. And combined with the swan, it makes the piece complete.

Ballerina swan in roses

Now I am 100% happy with the finished piece! I do want to thank Nika for the inspiration and fun workshop and all her YT tutorials helped with understanding certain techniques. She isn't afraid to share her mistakes and also show how you can correct them, which is the biggest inspiration of all. So that would be my biggest take away from this workshop. 

Hope this got you inspired to work on a piece you gave up on initially and create from that ugly ducking a beautiful swan yourself!

I would like to enter this piece in the following challenge:
Take It, Make It Challenge
Craft Stamper take it make it november 2017

MMW#30 Anything mixed media goes
Thanks so much for stopping by and have a great day!


  1. OMG! This is absolutely AMAZING! WOW! I would love to see it linked to
    Make it Feminine over at

    Happy week for you!
    oxo Susi

    1. Thank you dear <3! I'll gladly link, thanks for the invite :) xoxo

  2. This is absolutely gorgeous, Cheetarah

    Thank you so much for joining us at MOO MANIA & MORE

  3. How amazing! This is such a delight! The image is amazing and your textured bg panel was altered beautifully! Super creative remake. Hugs, Autumn

  4. This is fabulous, you've created so much texture in the background and the Swan image looks amazing.
    Avril x

  5. Great canvas .... love the texture. Thank you for playing along with the Craft Stamper challenge xx


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