Who doesn’t have some walls to fill with art?! (ok, I might not have any left…) But do you want to pay big bucks for that abstract art? Or do you just want to be so proud and say you are now an artist?! Here is a way to create your own magic! I mean MAGIC! I am an artist, but this Pendulum Art is so amazing, I could cover the world with these. Artistic talent not needed, so why not?
What do you need?
You do not need very specific supplies.
- You need a vessel to hold the paint, Such as a pop bottle/plastic bottle with holes punched/cut and a tip that is able to be closed such a dish soap top.
- String or yarn of some type
- Acrylic paint, Latex or any kind can work. Paint consistency will affect the flow of paint and absorption on the canvas. You will need a fair amount of paint depending on the size of art. (I tend to GO BIG, so I used household latex paint and some acrylic artist paint.
- I used a carabiner to allow detaching from the string for easier cleaning. (perhaps wire could also work)
- (not pictured) You need a place to hang the vessel from. Any pole or stick or hook on the ceiling will work. The higher = bigger ability to swing. ‘Think back to geometry. It should not touch the canvas at low point. I used a tree pruner pole suspended from a ladder step to a shelf in the garage. My large canvas was about 4′ x 7’. You could start small and use a broomstick across some chairs or even a tripod.
- You will need a surface for your painting. I used a canvas cloth like this, as they come in large sizes. Paper, pre-stretched canvases or boards can also work. I chose to have it stretched prior, however you could also create the art first and then crop your art out of the whole. (oh, wait! New idea; you could also make a multi-canvas arrangement). There are no rules here, just have fun.
I like to be cheap, (no, I like to save money for other better things) so I stretched my own canvas, enjoying the use of my new electric staple gun. When stretching a canvas over a frame the staples are started in the centre of each side and worked outward all around. I like the natural cotton canvas colour so some remained raw. Take some cues from your own colour scheme. Any background color can be your starting point.
This method creating modern art is based on the force of gravity. I like to share my tips, as I actually DO these projects.
Tip #1: each paint has different density so you may want to practice on some newspaper first. I like a solid flow line, however slower flow, thicker paint would make drips that form the pattern. You may not quite know what shape you will get. It’s like Spirograph in a sense. So much fun! Do notice all the newspaper and tarp to cover the floor. Plan to over-shoot the canvas.
Tip #2: try not to wriggle the vessel as you let it go as it will then give “wriggly” lines. If you are concerned you may use a pole rather than a string for more assurance of no “wigglies”. Gravity has a way of making the pattern so exact it’s mind-blowing!
As you see here the amount of paint was quite wet, so it needed longer to dry. My studio was not quite large enough. (Garages aren’t just for cars anyways…)
I do love how this ‘scientific’ method creates such perfect shapes & designs! Once it is swinging it is best to let it continue in circular motion in order for the designs to be complete.
Tip #3: Keep it simple and choose colours that are not too contrasting. There is a lot for the eye to look at so I kept it more monochromatic. That is really a taste issue. I like subtle contrasts.
An interesting thing occurred here by accident in this end result. The paint that was poured into this cup was different shades, so it changed as the design flowed. Such a cool phenomenon! So many possibilities.
I am happily surprised how this turned out and it was my first attempt. Greys are great in decor now and I feel I will not tire of the colours.. I had painted in some of the negative space, subtly, but again, not necessary. I must admit; this felt more like playing as a kid than as an adult.
A tripod can make a great smaller scale setup. Smaller canvases ganged up together can also be easier than one large canvas.
What do you think? Once you start the problem is deciding to stop before it gets too busy… It gives suggestion to flying atoms…
This Pendulum art works great in this throwback 50’s modern kitchen. I chose to keep it unframed, to again keep it modern. My DIY light shade is also my DIY project here and accents very nicely.
Alright, here is a video, but please don’t laugh…
This larger canvas of pendulum painting was lots of fun as well. And yes, grey again. If the pattern does not turn out as you like, just paint over it or use the current wet paint to smooth out a background colour. It is somewhat of an experiment, until you get the hang of it! But it is doing the work for you…
This art form had so man different patterns & is fun to do with children to teach about gravity & creativity. Make sure the workspace can handle the mess and paint drip…