February 8, 2009

Altering a Magazine Image

In my last post I wrote about working on altering a magazine image. The project was inspired by an article in the book “Exhibition 36” by Susan Tuttle.   The article, Portraits Reinvented also written by Susan Tuttle, describes the process and immediately piqued my interest.  (By the way, there are 36 artists who contribute to this book.)

Sultry Redhead


I’ve altered magazine faces before for an ATC swap at ATCsforall.com but this project was a bit bigger.  This time instead of working atc size I used a 9” X 12” canvas board as my substrate.  I used an image from W fashion magazine, glued it to the canvas board and used a brayer on it so the glue would grab evenly.  Then I cut off the excess portion of the image. 

After the glue was dry, I applied gesso heavily to the image background and lightly to the main focus of the image and let it dry.  I painted the background green and then  added a few more paint layers and muted it with brown and black pastels.

I altered the shape and color of the woman’s dress and hair. Added black pastels and charcoal to create shadows.  The sprayed it with fixative and finally finished with two layers of clear acrylic gloss spray. 

I really enjoyed this project but if I had it to do over again, I would sand the image lightly to remove the magazine glossy finish.  Why because as I added charcoal and pastels, the paint would scrape off if I rubbed too hard.  I had to fix it in a few spots.  The spray finish will protect it so I don’t have to worry about it now.

I highly recommend “Exhibition 36” by Susan Tuttle, if you get a chance pick it up.  It’s a real gem!


  1. Thanks for sharing this, it is great, and the book looks worth getting.

  2. This looks great! Might try to pick this book up.

  3. I too blog hop only to be rewarded with a blog like yours where I can rest my weary head.



  4. Like yourself I have used this for head & shoulders for atc sized images. Never thought of upping the size, but it might be worth a canvas.Thanks for sharing this - john

  5. Linda, thanks for sharing your experiences with this technique. I love to read stuff like that! :-)))

    Still kinda scared to do more of these. Need to be brave....

    Thanks for your sweet comments on my valentines. Happy love day to ya!



I love reading comments so thank you for taking the time to leave one. I will respond by email if your profile includes an email address or if you leave your email address in the message. Have a wonderful day.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin