Esma Pacal Turam isn't very well known in the US - yet. She is an amazing artist from Turkey who focuses on creating lacy sculptures out of one of my favorite materials: hot glue. I never thought about this technique before but it makes perfect sense because hot glue is moldable before it dries very fast and keeps it's hard shape while staying light and flexible. Although she doesn't have very many examples on her site, the idea is inspiring enough for me to pick up my hot glue gun and make something unique.
I may have to use this technique in a future installation piece! For now, I wanted to share a lower key process using glue in an opposite direction than Esma. While she uses glue as her drawing form and then focuses on using her designs without a background, I wanted to focus on the negative space that dettached glue makes... let me explain.
Once the canvas is dry you can start gluing your design. If the solid color was light enough, you should be able to faintly see your design underneath as a guide.
Let the paint dry for an afternoon and then get your hairdryer and sit somewhere comfortable. By holding the warm air under the canvas in the place that you are working, the glue magically comes up!
Disclaimer: this was my husband's idea. When I had trouble getting the hot glue off the canvas without peeling up paint he recommended getting it hot. I wasn't very humble and rejected his idea because I thought the glue would melt everywhere and make a mess. Eventually I came around. I have to admit that my chemical-engineering husband is pretty smart sometimes...
I'm glad I can share this trick with you so you don't waste as much time as I do!
I love the finished product! The lines from the glue create wonderful negative space that gives the design an ethnic feel.
During the process I couldn't help but think what a fun project this would be with kids! As long as you get the hot glue part done, they can have fun painting inside the lines and helping you peel the glue off.