I love this time of year as the autumn moves towards cosy winter nights. Halloween has passed and Bonfire Night awaits before the countdown to Christmas. And a cup of hot soup in front of a big bonfire takes me straight back to my childhood and any bonfire night wouldn’t be complete without a Catherine Wheel – the inspiration for this project.

Square canvas with firework pattern

I started with a 20cm square canvas and painted it with black Powertex. I then used Easy Structure to stencil a swirl design onto the canvas and once dry painted over this with black Powertex.
Although very little of this pattern would be visible on the final pieces it also provided me with a basic shape to follow when adding the paper decoration.
First I used small pieces of white paper decoration which I laid slightly randomly but following the swirl pattern and painted over it with black Powertex. (You could use any colour paper decoration for this part as it is completely covered with the black)
Overlaid with Powertex pattern
Once this was dry, I mixed rich gold Colortricx pigment with Powerwax and gently applied it over the raised parts with a sponge.
To add some extra depth and texture to the corners of the canvas, I mixed some red Powertex with Easy 3D Flex to make a paste and applied this roughly to the corners and left it overnight to crack.

Added orange Powertex

I then carefully painted the top surface of the cracked area with black Powertex. Using the red Powertex with the Easy 3D Flex made sure that there would be nice bright red colour in the cracks.
Painted top surface
Next, it was time to add the gorgeous coloured paper decoration – burgundy, light pink, red wine and red.
Papers to be attached
I tore off long thin pieces of paper decoration and fanned it out towards the end. I laid these onto the canvas following the swirl pattern and painted over them with a good coating of transparent Powertex. Although this goes on a milky white, it dries clear allowing the original colours of the paper to show through.
Once I had added enough paper decoration I left it to dry overnight.
Papers attached to the canvas
The final part was to add some gold and copper tones to give it the warmth of fire. I did this by mixing Colortricx pigments (copper, bronze gold and rich gold) with Powerwax and applying it over the tops of the texture with a sponge.
Finished picture
I am still undecided if I need to add anything into the centre. I am keeping my eyes open for a nice bit of fiery bling…
Until next time, Abs xx


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