Mixed media art: Roots

TCW574 Mountain View The Crafter's Workshop stencil template Carmen Medlin

This piece features one of my newest stencil designs at The Crafter’s Workshop! I’ve been missing my grandparents a lot lately, so wanted to do some art that reminds me of them. The “Mountain View” stencil is very special to me because I designed it after a real mountain, which looks over the tiny town where my grandparents lived and I was born.

art materials mixed media Crafters Workshop stencils

Materials I used:
TCW574 Mountain View stencil
– Strathmore Mixed Media Paper 400 Series in the 6×8″ size
– Faber-Castell Polychromos colored pencils
– Apple Barrel and Folk Art acrylic craft paint
– Kuretake Gansai Tambi watercolors
– Round watercolor and acrylic brushes in various sizes


First, I used a big round brush to make a wet blob on the paper with just water. Then I dropped in some blues and greens with another brush from the watercolor, trying to keep everything pretty sopping wet and picking up the paper to blend the colors by physically turning it. With the clean brush I drop in spots of water while the color is still shiny, but not a puddle — this makes “blooms” which add a neat texture.


When it was dry, I held the stencil down on the paper and added another loose layer of watercolor, this time with a bit darker greens and ochre. I’m not too worried about going outside the lines a bit at this point.
After this layer dries, I go in with my colored pencils to further define the stenciled mountain. I pay attention to the edges of the shapes, and blend inward from them. I also add more trees to the mountain sections by using feathery upward strokes with the pencil in an elgongated triangle shape.


Next, I get my photo reference of my grandparents’ old church and freehand draw it in light graphite (I use a 2H). I block in the church colors and main shadows with the acrylic paint, and put in some bushes around the church, also.
Gradually I add little details to the church like shingles, doorframes, etc. I use a teeny brush for this!

Roots - Carmen Medlin Soldier Mountain Fall River Mills CA Glenburn Community Church

The last details are added here like the siding on the building and some more contrast with darker colors on the mountain and surrounding countryside. I blend as I go with cotton swabs. All done!

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