Art Expectations Art Guitar



I want to share with you my art guitar that I created for the Wildflower Festival in Richardson Texas. I’ve been working on it for the past two weeks and am finally done! Guitars are created/collaged/sculpted and otherwise transformed into artwork to be auctioned off for a good cause (literacy and secondary art programs). This is my third one to do. I love the author Douglas Adams’ books (most known for The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series) and since he passed away 13 years ago this month, I decided to do a tribute to him. I collaged items from the book and movie poster and some of my own painting to make a one-of-a-kind guitar. (Plus you can still play it!) The winner of this item at the auction also gets a tiny book necklace I made and a Don’t Panic towel which I did not make, but purchased off etsy. (If you’ve read the books, you know that towels and the number 42 play an important part of the story!) It was fun. Glad it’s done. Enjoy. 


Art Expectations Day 64


Finished Guitar:

I put in the last details on my Wildflower Guitar: grey gear and vines in the very center, a few other grey swirls around and added a piece of an original illustration by F.W. Pailthorpe which appears in my copy of the book. I am happy with the outcome! There are lots of things to look at and I hope it is interesting to other people.

Page 69:

We learn the names of most of the people that are talking together in the detached room behind Manor House: Camilla, Cousin Raymond, Sarah Pocket and one other unnamed woman, plus Estella is still there. Camilla is telling everyone that she begged a Mr. Tom to allow her to go buy some things for the poor children. After all her begging, he gives in and tells her to go do it. So she goes out in the rain and buys the things. (No mention of who she is talking about or what she actually bought.) A distant bell is heard and Estella says to Pip, “Now, boy!” They leave the group and the little house to go back into Manor House.

All I have left to do is put a gloss varnish over everything. I might also add some things to the back, such as this blog address and “Charles Dickens”. Yeah, almost done!

Art Expectations Day 63


MORE Wildflower Festival Guitar!! I am getting pretty close to being finished. Yeah!

Today, I read page 68 and worked more on the little pig, Estella’s right eye (argh, can’t get it right), painted the year 1860 and pasted on text from the first page of the book, Chapter 1. Lastly I will need to coat this book paper with a varnish (matte medium) to protect it. Actually I will coat the whole front of the guitar with this varnish when I finish painting.

But on to page 68:

Pip is lead by the lovely Estella into a detached house at the back of the property. They walk through the back courtyard to get to it. She tells him to wait by a window until he is needed. I guess he is not allowed to participate in the conversation that is being held by three ladies and one gentleman. He is feeling uncomfortable, as if he is being scrutinized by the group. He stares out the window at the neglected courtyard. The people in the room are described as being “toadies and humbugs.” That doesn’t sound like a compliment!

Great Expectations Day 59 Wildflower Guitar


Happy Accidents! As my daughter was leaning over my shoulder watching me work on the guitar last night, her hair swooshed over a part that was still very wet with oil paint. It left a beautiful scratchy mark in the paint that can only be done by accident. She thought I’d be upset, but “NO!” I loved it. After making sure I got any oil paint out of her hair, I tried to replicate the look with my own hair. But it didn’t work. So I used a large course bristle brush in some of the wet areas and got a similar result as with the accident “daughter’s-hair” brush. Yeah!

Since the paint was still so very wet, I could not paint the little objects onto the area that I wanted to. Not wanting to wait until the paint was dry, I decided to try scratching (drawing) the objects into the wet paint. (see above photo) Tried a toothpick first, but it was too small of a point. The handle end of a paint brush worked just fine. I drew in images that I thought about when reading Great Expectations. (These were used in a previous sketch I did.)

Now, what I read today, on page 64:

The stranger in the Three Jolly Bargemen orders rum “all around” at his expense (just for himself, Joe and Mr Wopsle). The stranger is described as wearing a large brimmed floppy hat and under it a tied handkerchief covering all of his hair, if he has any at all. That’s it! Not much today. Probably find out who this stranger is tomorrow or Monday. Have a great weekend!

Great Expectations Day 56


Joe encourages Pip by telling him he has accomplished a lot of learning already (writing a whole letter in print) and that everyone, even the king, had to start somewhere (literally, at the beginning of the alphabet with the letter “A”). He also tells Pip that he will not become uncommon by telling lies and he should never to do it again. Pip falls asleep that night thinking of the differences in his life and Estella’s and Miss Havisham’s.

For the next week, or so, I will be working on an art guitar to be auctioned off at the Wildflower Festival in Richardson Texas! This is where I take an ordinary guitar, preferably acoustic, and paint, collage, cut it up, whatever… just make it cool. The proceeds from the auction go to the Network of Community Ministries and to the high school fine art programs of the local school district! Yeah, I like that. I did one last year, my first, so this will be my second guitar to do. The festival is May 18-20, so I have until about May 16 to be done. YIKES! It’s almost April!

Here is the guitar I did last year, with a 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and Jules Verne theme. I love that book, the story and the movie made back in 1954… so cool. (I did not see it in 1954… wasn’t around then!)

My plan this year is… you guessed it… to do a Dickens/Great Expectations themed guitar. I will post my progress here and continue reading the book as I go along. Here is what the blank guitar looks like right now, before being altered:

Can’t wait to start on it. Here is a little sketch of my plan:

It doesn’t look like much yet. I’ll work on a more refined sketch in the next few days. But I won’t spend too much time on that. I like to just jump right in, start painting and let it come together as I go along. I do want some 3D elements, maybe top hat and feathers on top. Not sure.

Here is a link to the festival’s guitar auction page. (Mine is featured there!) I’d say they had about 20 guitars total last year.