Thrift Store Altered Art

So, yes, I’ve jumped on the band wagon.  The principle is: find some old/bad/unloved art from a thrift store. Buy it, and then add your own addition to the image, turning into something completely different. And hopefully more interesting.

When a friend of mine Susanne was looking for something to hang on her empty wall, this method came to mind. Her and her husband are big into robots.  So I hit up the local Savers and found the perfect framed lithograph from the 70’s. It was only $3. Perfect!

The design of the robot was based on an image I love “Come, Come Little One” by Szymon Biernacki. Since this was really just an experiment, I didn’t anticipate how much I would love the final produce. Therefore I failed to take a before picture. Whoops.  But I was able to find the original image online (the version I bought had been cropped down to a much smaller portion of the photo):


I loved the result so much.  It was so much fun to add these guys into the picture, and the challenge of matching the color tones and style was delightful. Then another friend Erin gave me the idea: TARDIS.  I hit up Goodwill on my way home from work, and picked up another few images.

The original art was a photo print of a painting by Gregory F. Harris.  I used acrylics to add in the TARDIS and K-9 and sealed the whole thing with varnish.  Print available here. Before and after:

I am hooked. I foresee many more of these in my future. Oh yes.  I am bursting with idea. And it combines two of my favorite hobbies. Painting. And “junking” as my Grandma would call it.

Here are some other artist’s thrift store alterations.




Happy Birthday Tara

Another year older, eh? Being the baby give me the joy of being able to always be the youngest, meaning I get to always make fun of my OLD sisters as they are, well, older than me. And since I’m the baby, they are not allowed to hit me.  So there. Today is my sister Tara’s birthday.  I won’t tell you how old she is today, except to say, OLDER than me!

When we were little, we did not get along very well. Mainly, because I was young enough to be annoying, not cool, when I followed her around trying to copy everything she and her friends did. I remember sneaking into her room when she wasn’t there to secretly play with her doll house, which was cooler than mine simply because it belonged to her (I was NOT allowed to play with HER doll house, except for special occasions).

Luckily, we grew up, and both became super cool.

Because she’s been on my mind a lot lately, and because it is her birthday, I decided to try my hand at painting a portrait of her.  Ideally, I would have her here in the flesh to do it, but since we live on opposite sides of the country, it wasn’t possible.  I did a sketch to work out the pose I wanted, then hit up my photo collection to gather reference images that were close to the pose.

I didn’t nail the likeness as close as I would prefer, but you can tell its her. Moreover, I love the colors and texture of the piece, and had fun doing it.  I wanted to keep working at it, to make it “perfect” and look just exactly like her, but I knew I would risk destroying the liveliness of it. So I let it go.  Acrylics on a 9×12 piece of Masonite.