Rubber Stamping in Mixed Media Art: How Combining Techniques Can Help You Overcome Art Block

Rubber Stamping in Mixed Media Art: How Combining Techniques Can Help You Overcome Art Block

Mixed media art is the exploration of many different elements. It is the journey of bringing all aspects of art together and creating something entirely new. The backbone of mixed media art is combining techniques and layering materials to create collages, sculptures, and visual art pieces. These reflect the artist's view of the world. 

Yet, sometimes artists can get stuck in a loop, using the same techniques again and again, which ends in their creativity coming to a grinding halt. If you are stuck, staring at a blank canvas, considering if you should quit the project or perhaps even art altogether, you are probably experiencing what is known as, "art block". 

Similar to writer’s block, art block refers to when an artist is experiencing a lack of new ideas or inspiration. It can be incredibly frustrating as the phenomenon is both caused by stress and causes stress! Luckily, there are some strategies to release what may be keeping you stuck. By combining new techniques like rubber stamping and shifting our mindset and perspective, artists can find their way back to an enjoyable creative process. 

 Rubber Stamping in Mixed Media Art: How Combining Techniques Can Help You Overcome Art Block

Get Unstuck, Layer By Layer 

Often when we feel stuck or blocked it is because we lack a vision for the future. By utilizing and leaning into the layering technique, artists can replace the idea of perfection versus mistake with a creative flow. Artists no longer need to have a vision for the final result, they only need to work layer by layer. The technique can show emerging patterns built with applications of print, text, embellishment, and stamp impressions. 

Rubber stamping is extremely helpful in layering. If an artist already has an application of paint, text, or images, rubber stamping accentuates or hides certain aspects. Alternatively, artists can use the stamp impression as a base to set the groundwork for other applications and artwork. Rubber stamps offer versatility no matter where an artist is in their creative project. They can be incorporated with mediums such as spray inks, clear embossing powder, puff paints, and more. 

Reimage The Tools You Have 

It can be difficult to create over long periods without introducing a plethora of new tools or fresh techniques. Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to have a new stream of materials at your disposal. Artists who are in the midst of a project can reimagine their techniques and tools for inspiring downright stunning results. 

Creating with rubber stamps allows artists to color, paint, and invite texture into each individual impression, all with a single stamp. To try this technique, you’ll need a stamp that can maintain its shape throughout multiple uses and under a variety of circumstances. Creative Rubber Stamps offer long-lasting, high-quality stamps that stand up against a variety of inks and paints. Rubber stamps allow the artists to reimagine the tools they already have, combining them with acrylic paint, block printing ink, or using brushes or a sponge to create a new effect. Some artists find that halfway through a project their stamp impression no longer serves them, and morph it into a new shape altogether by covering the stamp with paint or ink on a single side.

Unconventional Methods For Unconventional Results 

Those who feel uninspired by their project may need to adjust how they are using their materials. While rubber stamping may seem straightforward, there are plenty of methods that allow artists to adjust how they are using it. Creating an impression on scrap paper with texture, or atop of text allows one to layer, but it also means the placement of the image isn’t permanent. Don’t like how it looks? Move it! Want to create more dimensions within the piece? Use the stamp over the texture for a cohesive 3-D design. With rubber stamps, there are many methods beyond covering the stamp in ink and placing it on the space.

 Rubber Stamping in Mixed Media Art: How Combining Techniques Can Help You Overcome Art Block

Repetition Of Self-Inking Rubber Stamps

Sometimes, the most intimidating part of beginning a new project or returning to an abandoned art piece is the blank space. With self-inking rubber stamps, artists have the opportunity to repeat the same design, text, shape, or image, over and over until a pattern arises. Filling the base layer with the expression and creating the ability to see what could be. 

Creating A Signature Stamp 

Designing a custom stamp is a creative pursuit in and of itself, and can be a wonderful way to express who you are as an artist. Many create an address stamp that’s customized with their logo or branding, but signature stamps can also be for images that reflect your project or the series of artwork you are creating. Choosing a text, shape, or design that showcases the theme can help guide you when you are stuck and bring you back to the creative flow. Even if you aren’t a professional artist, having a signature or custom stamp is an amazing way to decorate, design, and most importantly, enjoy the process of making art.  

Experimentation Leads To Inspiration  

As with all art forms, self-criticism, and judgment has no place in the studio. Do away with the negativity and instead lean into the experiment. If you are just starting a new project, go in to take risks! Set out to use new techniques and open yourself up to using what is unfamiliar. Try incorporating new creative materials such as textiles, stitching, or stamping techniques. These can get you out of your head and into the “zone”, opening you up to new possibilities for your art. 

The Takeaway

Whether you want to overcome an artist's block or are simply looking to bring more playful expression into your studio, rubbing stamping can be an ultra-effective tool. Rubber stamping in mixed media art helps the artist experience inspiration in their creative process and hopefully end with a stunning result. If we uncover our holdups and release the fear of failure, we can see how to move through an art block. By using a combination of techniques, we can go outside our comfort zone. In the end, our mixed media art piece will look exactly as it was supposed to, and we will become better artists in the process. 

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