Making Glittering Geodes, Techniques Using Resin | Alison Camacho | Skillshare

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Making Glittering Geodes, Techniques Using Resin

teacher avatar Alison Camacho, Resin Artist and owner of fuzzycomma

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

11 Lessons (1h 9m)
    • 1. Introduction

      2:54
    • 2. Project

      1:14
    • 3. Designing Your Geode

      7:41
    • 4. Surface Preparation

      6:09
    • 5. Crystals

      4:03
    • 6. Colouring Resin

      11:12
    • 7. Pouring Your Resin

      14:13
    • 8. Adding Geode Lines

      4:46
    • 9. Adding Metal Leaf

      5:08
    • 10. Finishing

      9:49
    • 11. Final Thoughts

      1:47
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About This Class

Have you seen the glorious geode artwork that is trending right now? These incredible sparkling artworks are amazingly beautiful and add a bit of luxury to any home. They are expensive to buy, but actually with a little bit of know-how from this course you will be able to create your own custom-made artwork to enhance your home. Not only that - but you will learn new skills in fluid art and using epoxy-resin. 

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This course is not prescriptive - I don't show you how I made just one geode. In the making of this course I created a dozen geodes and show you several more! This course details the techniques used and how they can be combined in different ways to create a myriad of amazing geode art. I have utilised speeded up sequences so you see the whole process without having to spend the many hours I spent creating these sparkling artworks.

You will learn:

  • How to research into this art form and creating a unique mixed media geode crystal design
  • How to shape and prepare your geode substrate
  • What crystals to choose and how to get ANY colour you like
  • How to colour resin (there are SO many ways!)
  • Methods of pouring and mixing bands (or not)
  • Adding geode banding lines
  • Adding gold/copper/silver metal leaf (several different ways)
  • Creating depth with multiple resin layers
  • Finishing and how to display

This course is designed for competent crafters starting with resin. Anyone can use resin but it does require some equipment which I have detailed in an added resource. 

You will finish this course confident to tackle creating these apparently complex and intricate geode artworks.

Meet Your Teacher

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Alison Camacho

Resin Artist and owner of fuzzycomma

Teacher

Hello, I'm Alison.

I'm a resin artist based in Bristol UK. I own the fuzzycomma art brand and fuzzycomma.com website. I specialise in geode and astronomy resin art although I am often tempted into creating art which attempts to help save the planet. I am passionate about preserving our world for future generations and so I like to reuse resources that would otherwise get thrown away, and I hate waste. In line with this philosophy, I also upcycle furniture - particularly small tables, often using a geode or astronomy theme (sometimes all at once) and, of course, resin! A defining feature of my art, and of my life, is my love of colour.

I am constantly refining my art and learning new techniques which I aim to pass onto my students. I have nearly 20 years experienc... See full profile

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Transcripts

1. Introduction: Geodes are small cavities in rocks lined with crystals or minerals. Agate, is an ornamental stone consisting of a hard variety of chalcedony (quartz), typically banded in appearance. Often geodes are surrounded by banded agate, and many of them are extremely beautiful. Most geodes are small, but they are intricate and sparkling and often very, very pretty. Traditionally, geodes help you connect with your inner-self, healing from within as the crystals in the geode grow inside the rock. I'm not sure I believe that, however, I can attest to the satisfaction and relaxation that results from making a beautiful artwork reminiscent of a geode. The advantage of creating your own is that you can choose any color combination you desire. And if you want, you can include a whole range of real crystals to add to the design, along with glitter and metal leaf, which are well-known to improve your state of mind. This course will take you through everything you need to know to create a single piece, resin geode artwork. I cover mini geodes and larger versions. I go through preparing the substrate, selecting and arranging crystals and other mixed media like shells and coloring the resin in a myriad of different ways. I show you how to pour resin so as to allow mixing of the lines or how to keep them separate if you wish. I go through adding the agate bands and using spray paint and metal leaf. I explain the options of what to do with the edges and how to add texture. Finally, I go through the different ways of finishing the artwork and discuss possible mounting methods. To frame or not to frame, that is the question. This course is not prescriptive. It gives a whole range of methods and suggestions of the sorts of things you can do to create different effects that you might want to include in your artwork. But what I hope you will gain from this course is the confidence to give resin art a go. It is easy to create something fun and with a little more knowledge and study, I believe anyone can create something truly spectacular using crystals in the way I describe in this course. My name is Alison. I am a resin artist based in Bristol in the UK, and I own the Fuzzy Comma art brand. Resin is uniquely suitable as a medium for creating geode art. And I hope you will join me on this crystal adventure! 2. Project: Your project is to create a geode artwork, small or large, single piece or more, any shape you prefer and on any substrate you like. You can choose to use crystals of acrylic, glass or any other stone and select any color combination you like. I hope that selecting your color palette and choosing your crystal inclusions will be a relaxing labor of love. And you will end up with an outstandingly beautiful artwork that is uniquely personal, yet universally admired for its beauty. I will show you many different methods of making geodes in lots of different styles, not just one. And I hope that at least one will appeal to you and speak to your inner self. You can combine the different methods and you will end up with something that is different to anything I will show you in this course. But you will have the confidence to do it your way and let your creativity shine! 3. Designing Your Geode: Designing your Geode. Research and Sketches. Of course, you can do an internet search on Pinterest or Instagram, for example. But if you copy someone else's design, you will be unlikely to create something exactly the same. Fluid art is notoriously difficult to reproduce. So I suggest you look for inspiration, but that you put your own twist on it, or use a different color combination or stone choice, shape, design, something. Some artists do a little sketch of their design before they start, either in a journal or a sketchpad or actually onto the prepared substrate. Having a record of your designs is actually really rather nice. But I prefer to take photographs of my finished pieces and put those into my artist's book. And of course, my artist's book also has resin covers. Substrate choice. When I am creating geodes I usually look at the substrate materials I have to hand. I hate waste and I feel that it is our duty to protect the planet as much as possible. And so I reuse things wherever possible. In this course, I have created a series of square mini geodes, and each is used to show a different color technique or stone combination. My many geodes use some thick MDF board off-cuts that I happened to have. However, you might choose to use tiles or wooden boards. Even canvases can work, although they need to be well pre-stretched to prevent them from sagging under the weight of resin and crystals. I also have quite a lot of colorless acrylic scrap, which I rescued from the bin of a plastics company, with their permission. And this is truly excellent for making free-form and double-sided, semi-transparent geodes. Problems with Pure Resin Geodes. You can make fully resin free-form geodes using modes that you buy or make yourself. And I have tried this. It has several disadvantages. First, it uses a lot of resin to make a geode thick enough not to bend under its own weight. Second, you will probably not be able to display it in a window, as sunlight will make it sag. Ask me how I know. Yet a window is the perfect place to display such an artwork. If you use an acrylic sheet to support your art work than sagging is not a problem. Finally, if you use a mould, all your geodes will be the same size and shape, and yet in the real world, no two geodes are ever the same. However, don't let my prejudice stop you from giving a moulded go if that is what you'd like to try. Color Choices and Crystals. Once you have chosen your substrate, it is time to select a color palette. Here you can choose the natural agate world to guide you, or you can choose colors that go with the interior decor of your home. However, there is no need to limit yourself to these colors and some of the most astonishingly beautiful designs and not in natural colors at all. I have found that selecting complimentary and contrasting colors often looks excellent. Burgundy and gold, blue and yellow, black and white. Or you can choose different shades of the same part of the color wheel. For example, pinks and purples, pale grey and white combined with silver and a very small amount of shocking magenta pink. I like to choose colors and then pick a metallic shade to contrast or lift the colors to another level. For example, teal and copper. Your color choices might well be led by what stones and crystals you have available or wish to include. Obviously, any colors will go with colourless glass or quartz points. But if you choose green aventurine or blue lapis lazuli, purple amethyst, or yellow citrine, this may dictate your color palette to some extent. However, there is nothing to stop you from choosing a whole rainbow of colors as I did for my piece, 'Rainbow Thankfulness'. When choosing your crystals, it is unnecessary to get polished ones. Pouring a layer of resin over unpolished raw stones will instantly bring out the colors and shine, like making the stones wet does. But they will permanently keep that color and shine that the resin gives them. If you choose colored stones, this will influence the colors of resin you might pour over the stones as you will probably not want to disguise those colors. Another consideration is the use of quartz points or other long-ish stones to make a rough quartz edge or flowers of quartz crystals. Thinking about their positioning and how many you will need is best done early in the designing stage, although they can be added later. You can buy or create crystals out of resin using moulds. And these will be just as beautiful as the original minerals the moulds are made from, and can come in a great many more different colors. Please go ahead and use these if you like. Although I do not use any in the course here and you can just replace the stones I use with resin ones instead. There is nothing to stop you using other things too. In these videos, I also use abalone shells, but you could use beads and fabric for texture, concrete or texture paste, crackle paste and mirror pieces, all sorts of media are possibilities. Shape of your Geode and multiple piece geodes. The shape you choose for your artwork is again, personal preference. I like organic shapes that are nothing like square usually. The minis shown in this course are an exception for me. MDF, wood and acrylic sheets can easily be cut with a jigsaw. But if you prefer not to use power tools, then square or round boards can be bought in almost any size. These are excellent to use as a base for geode. In some ways, choosing a geometric shape is a good way to avoid detracting attention from the crystal and color of your design. Finally, this course only covers single piece geodes, although there is no need for you to stick to that. The same techniques will apply to a diptych or triptych. If you want to make multiple level designs though, you will need a few more power tools than I use in this course. 4. Surface Preparation: Cutting out and substrate preparation. I like to reuse materials and the board used for my geode minis comes from an old fitted wardrobe that was dismantled. The MDF has already been painted in a fetching shade of grey, but only where it showed. To cut these off-cuts to shape our use a jigsaw. If you have access to a circular saw, then this is a great option to get straight edges. I don't have access to one of these, so I use my jigsaw and I clamp a straight edge in the correct place to use it to butt up against. So I get lovely straight edges and 90-degree corners. If you want to create an organic shape, then a jigsaw is the best option. I usually draw the approximate shape I want to reproduce. If I intend to have very tight turns, then the jigsaw blade needs to be narrow. It is also important to choose the correct blade of the material you intend to cut. So a PMMA blade, polymethylmethacrylate, for cutting acrylic or MDF, (due to the amount of glue in this composite material) and a wood blade for cutting proper wood. Most jigsaws allow you to adjust how fast they travel forward. If the shape you are cutting is very intricate than I suggest, a slow forward speed. If you go too slowly, it is possible that the friction heats up the blade enough for it to melt the plastic and it re-heals itself as the blade passes. This is reduced if you use the correct blade type and it helps if your blade is new and sharp. I have experienced this when trying to cut PVC with a jigsaw. If this is a real problem for you, then have a beaker of water to hand to dip the blade in, to cool it between cuts and only do very short cuts. An alternative is to cut it manually, but this is not favourite, and of course, it is very time consuming. If you are cutting straight lines with a jigsaw, then select the fastest forward speed. To cut out a central hole, first, drill a hole big enough to allow the jigsaw blade through. Then just cut the central hole in the same way as the outside edge starting from the drilled hole. You can see I'm doing this using a work bench, which has a hole in the middle. This is perfect for supporting your piece while cutting with a jigsaw this way. In terms of safety, there will be dust. Both MDS and acrylic dust and not great to breathe in. No dust really is. So make sure you are wearing a dust mask. Additionally, power tools can throw things around unexpectedly. So for example, when a jigsaw blade breaks, you would be best wearing glasses, preferably high impact resistance, safety glosses. Finally, if you were working with heavy bits of wood, you might want to invest in some safety footwear. Once cut to size and shape, you will need to prepare MDF by painting with emulsion paint, acrylic paint, furniture paint, or some other similar preparation. This is because MDF is very porous, so you need to have a surface layer to prevent your resin from being absorbed. Gesso can be used. It's expensive, but perfect. Spray paint is just absorbed into the surface the way the resin would be. So you can use spray paint to color an MDF surface that's already prepared with a different sort of paint. But you can't use it as a sealing layer initially. It is a good idea to lightly sand any surface before you paint it to act as a key. Can you see that paint recede? It doesn't stick or wet the surface. It's trying to draw itself in on itself. In fact, what's happening is, the surface tension of the water in this mixture is pulling the paint back to occupy a smaller space. So this paint won't paint this surface. However, if I key the surface, if I roughen it up so that there is little nooks and crannies for the paint to get into, I can make the paint sticks to the surface. S0 first I key the surface by sanding it, and then I clean it with a bit of alcohol. This area has been keyed, this area hasn't. Where it hasn't been keyed, the paint clumps up. And where it has been keyed, the paint sticks much better. It's still not perfect, but it's much better. I thought I would show you the effect of keying a surface by sanding it. This applies not just to paint but to resin too, however, it is really not necessary to key acrylic resin sticks to it very well, even without keying. 5. Crystals: Adding Crystals. You can put your crystals anywhere in any design you like. Classic geodes have crystals around the inside edges of a central hole. Often there are crystals of different sizes in different layers around that central hole. I like to use glass crystals of different sizes to replicate this. Your Geode design could represent just a section of a natural geode. So your crystals might just be along one edge, or you can choose to put your crystals anywhere you think is aesthetically pleasing. Possible special features include quartz crystal flowers made from quartz points. I use a hot glue gun to hold the quartz points in place until they can be secured properly with resin. These give a three-dimensionality to a geode design, which I really like. An alternative way of getting that 3D feel, is piling up the crystals which you hold in place with resin. Before pouring the resin, you might like to hold a few key crystals in place with hot glue, like for the quartz points, flower. I like to use a few focus stones in a design, like this red jasper, or this rose quartz. The stones don't have to be polished. Once coated in resin, the stone will keep its deep color and showing permanently. Allowing your crystals to 'drip' over the edges of your piece is an effective design feature. You will need to secure them with hot glue until the resin pour, as I show you here. if you like color but can't get the crystals the color that you want. You can color glass crystals any color you like. Using acrylic inks. Shake the crystals a few at a time with a small quantity of your ink of your chosen color, and then spread them out to dry. The ink will stay permanently once they are coated in resin. This allows any color stone you like. Alternatively, broken, recycled glass can be obtained in any color. This method of getting colored glass crystals will give you light color-fast crystals that will never fade. The blue stones here are made from blue glass and the dark red shards you can see here, are bits, broken red glass tubes. The yellow and green crystals here are actually mixed with a number of different colors. This is a mixed color recycled crushed glass product bought from a specialist aggregate company that recycles glass. You don't have to stick to crystals. Here. I'm using an abalone shell, but lots of different materials are possible like these mirror pieces or beads or mica flakes or sand. I like to use these polished chips of real semi-precious stones. They are really good value and come in many different colors. In these Minis, I have used green aventurine, tigers-eye amethyst, and fluorite chips. 6. Colouring Resin: So how to color your resin? First of all, ordinary acrylic paint. I've got two big pots here, a black and a white. Here's a green. You can see that they come in different sizes. There's a big metallic green one and a metallic pink one. And this one is just a regular matt blue, it would be if you painted it on, on its own, but with resin, of course, it will end up shiny. There's a metallic olive green and a blue. And you can get specialist colors. This one is a fluorescent one. And so this one would glow in the dark. So any color you like and you can mix them. So you can buy every color. And if you don't have the color you want, or if you want, for example, to mix are something that glows in the dark with a different color than you can do that as well. So every possible color is an option. So that's the easy way to color... that's the easy way to color resin. There's another way. Mica, pigments are extremely popular. Here are some Piccassio pigments. You can see this particular set comes in every color. One of my favorites is this; its called Pink Quarts, and it's sort of iridescent, pink and gold flip color. But you can get them in steel and in carbon black can in peacock blue and in aqua and in copper and in claret and every possible color. And these ones, are a Jacquard equivalent. Again, interesting colors. Some of them flip colors. There's one in here called mink, which is a sort of pink- green and so on. These are mica colors. That means they've got the mineral mica in them. And mica gives the materials that it's mixed with an iridescence. The particles and catch the light. And consequently, if you stir resin which have got these pigments mixed in, they, they catch the light that way as well. And where you've stirred them is caught, it's trapped in the resin. You can't really repeat that with any other medium other than resin. So these mica pigments are absolutely beautiful and really great. So those are mica pigments. I've got here; this is a special effects pigment. This one happens to be green, green glow pigment. And this one glows in the dark. And I'll go switch my light off and I will show you what it looks like under a UV light, so that you can see what that one looks like. There is the pigment underneath the UV, and if I lift it out, you can see that it's glowing. Beautiful. In addition to acrylic paints and mica pigments, which make the resin, depending on how much of the pigment you add, opaque to the light. You can't see through the resin. You can also add additives which are transparent, so they color the resin, but they leave it possible for the light to come through. Now if you like making things that are going to hang in a window, these might be the way you want to go. If you are going to make a geode which has multiple layers, you might want to put down an opaque layer at the base and then have transparent layers on top of that. Some of them completely colorless, but some of them colored with transparent pigments. Now these particular transparent pigments I got from Easy Composites, which is where I get my resin from. I don't know if you can see that. But you can buy transparent resin, pigments from specialist art shops and online. So, and I've got a whole selection here. So I've got a red and a black and blue and a yellow and a green and so on. And of course again, you can mix these. You could even mix these with other pigments so you can get, slightly transparent. So if you only put a bit of mica in, you can get an iridescent transparent pigment... The options are endless. So this is a lovely too. Lots of people use alcohol inks. So, and these come in all different colors. You can have white ones and the white ones are heavy and they sink. And you can have iridescent ones. You can see here I've got an iridescent blue and an iridescent green. You can have regular colours. So there's a, this is a red, yellow and so on. What you need to be aware of though, is that these need to be alcohol inks. If they're not alcohol inks, if they've got water in them. So even India ink and regular writing inks, they do not mix well with resin they won't work. They prevent the resin from setting properly and you end up with sticky patches, which is not great. So alcohol inks are great for specialists techniques. And this particular one is alcohol mixed with a special material called fluoriscene. So this one glows, which is great, really great. It glows under UV light. I've got here some UV sprays sorry! Some glitter sprays, again in alcohol. And these actually are metallic sprays for going on your hair and they're in alcohol so that they dry really quickly so you can just spray them straight on. But these are great. You can add these to resin pieces to give you special effects. Really great fun. And you can see I've got a pink one and a gold one. And I think this one's a purple one. So really good fun. Now. Glitter, I'm sure you're aware comes in all different colors and all different size of flakes. I happen to have here, this one is a holographic glitter. I don't know if he can see that it changes color. Here I've got some mirror pieces. So actually catching the light there. So that's effectively big glitter. But, I have a love-hate relationship with glitter. I love glitter because it's like glitter. But it is micro plastics. Or at least most glitter is. You can buy bio-degradable glitters, the sort that you put on your face at raves and so on. Those are great. And I would advocate using bio-degradable glitters. Once they're set in the resin, they won't degrade. They haven't got access to any of the things necessary to degrade, so they will... they will stay. But regular glitters they're micro plastics and that's not great for the environment. So what I like to use in my pieces are these. Now, these are metallic glitters. These come from a company called Advanced Metallics based in America. So you might have difficulty getting hold of these. I have to import them. I'm based in the UK, but they're made from metal and they do come in a whole range of shades. And they are, of course, not plastic. They do have their issues. Because they're metal, they are heavy. And so if you have a thick layer of resin, they will sink to the bottom. So I'll my geode things I loved put these actually on top of the crystals because then they sit at every different angle because of the layer... the surface of the crystals, but they're pretty no matter what. If you want a flat layer of glitter than that is great. You can put so much in there that it stays stuck up at different angles, but you do have to add quite a lot to do that. Okay, so glitters, acrylic paint, mica pigments, transparent pigments, alcohol, inks, all sorts of specialists things. One more thing I want to talk about, and that is silicone. This is a silicone lubricant perhaps to be a 3 in 1 oil. Its designed for spraying things, moving parts. Silicone can be added to resin and it will change the way that that resin, one that it's mixed in with, mixes with the other resins. So you can make the resin lighter or heavier, more dense or less dense by the use of adding silicone. If you change the densities of the materials, then, especially when you heat it up with your heat gun, you can make the resins move through each other. So this is what you need to make cells in resin. And coincidentally it will also make cells in fluid artwork with just acrylics. So this is a really nice thing to have if what you want is an interesting effects. One of the things that is used often for is for those breaking waves on ocean type resin pieces. So there you have it. All of the different things to add to resin, that I add to resin to make my resin artwork pieces. 7. Pouring Your Resin: Adding pigmented resin. To hold your crystals in place you will need to pull resin over them. If you have raw crystals, you will need to make sure they are completely wetted with resin to maintain that depth of colour and shine. Fingers are often a good way to make sure that every crystal is coated. But remember to wear gloves. If you are using crystals on the edges of your art work, you will need to make sure every crystal is completely coated there too. Any resin runoff can be re-used if it is clear. If you're crystals are colorless, then there is not a great deal of difference in the refractive index of glass and that of resin. So the shape of crystals completely submerged in resin cannot easily be seen and they do not catch the light nor add to the intricacy of the design. This might be your aim. Alternatively, you might want to outline your colorless glass crystals by pouring a colored resin over the top of them and then following up with a colorless resin to dilute it. Another way of indicating the structure and shape of submerged crystals is through the use of glitter. The glitter outlines the edges of the crystals. Advanced Metallics , real metal glitter is much more dense than resin and so it sinks to the bottom. This will give a very flat effect for resin poured on flat areas. But if poured over glass crystals with the glitter impregnated in it, it will allow the eye to see all the structure beneath the resin surface, giving a very pleasing effect. In my opinion. Geodes often have a ring or band structure. You can represent this with resin bands, or you can draw on the banding or afterwards, or both. I personally don't like to prevent the different colors of resin from mixing. But if that is your aim, then you can achieve this by pouring each line separately and allowing time for the resin to cure or at least partially cure, between pours. You kind of course paint lines onto your substrate before you start, and then carefully pour your resin and push it into a rigid pre-painted design, allowing curing between adjacent colors between pours. However, I like my geodes to be more fluid and organic than that. Once you have poured some touching colors, you can promote controlled mixing using a heat gun or a mixing stick. Although of course there is nothing to stop you from combining these two techniques. Mixing some and not mixing other bands. The next few sequences show you some different examples of how to pour resin colors and allow or encourage mixing. Here, I have a colorless resin at the centre, around the stones and over the mirror pieces and the purple cured resin band. Then I add a white resin and mix it using directed heat from a heat gun. Around the outside, I add a transparent blue resin. Since my substrate is painted blue, it is not immediately obvious that this outer band of resin is colored. But I have got some subtle mixing of the blue coloration into the white resin at the outer edges, if you look carefully. In this sequence, you can see the effect of allowing contrasting yellow and red pigments to mix. These colors were chosen to contrast with the red jasper stone and the primarily yellow crushed glass. I love bright colors and so I especially like the way that this one has come out. In this sequence, you can see how the center line of crystals is used to keep the colored resins separate. The tigers-eye stones are complemented by both the antique gold on one side and the pale gold on the other. Here I have used a double pouring technique using both colorless resin and a very small amount of strongly colored magenta resin to pick out the shapes of both the finer crushed glass and also the large rose quartz stone. I go on to add very pale colors, thinking it might look good, but I am unhappy with the result. And you will see later on that I cover up this pink and green resin with white and gold. In this blue example, you can see that I have not covered the raw and rough turquoise blue stone with resin in the first pour. I did eventually cover it up with a subsequent pour of clear resin. And you can see the difference it makes to the shine and clarity of color of this rather beautiful blue mineral. In this dark pink and copper acrylic backed geode, I have allowed the colored resin to flow between the stones to show the structure of them at the edges and around the central crystal area. The copper and pink colors are encouraged to mix with the heat gun. And the heating of the resin makes it more liquid and so it flows much more easily between the stones. It also makes the final effect look much more natural and organic, even though the geode mineral behavior we are mimicking is inorganic chemistry. This sequence shows the pouring of the mini geode with a quartz flower and glass crystals dripping over the edges. One of the most sumptuous colour combinations you can choose is all-metallic colours. Here I show how to mix copper, gold, and pearl white to produce a really rich and glamorous result. The resin started to run off the corner of this piece just close to the crystals. And since this was not what I wanted, I removed it so that I could adjust its angle to prevent the runoff while it cured. This is often one of the trials of fluid art. You need to be vigilant if you are not to lose all your resin over the edges of your art works. Of course, you can put in a tape barrier. The disadvantage of this is that your design doesn't then extend over the sides the piece. And since a great many of my free form geodes on not framed, this edge finishing is actually really important to get that complete-feeling from the artwork. If you prefer clean edges, then please go ahead and use tape barriers. This can be especially effective when the edges are to be painted with gold, for example. This next example uses real amethysts with a beautiful large raw amethyst stone, which has a delicate color. I wanted to complement the purple and lilac colors of stones. And so I went for a deep violet and a pearl white, which I know when mixed would give me all the possible shapes of lilac and purple in between. Pouring them in bands and making sure the outside edges are coated in the deep violet resin, will give this piece an ombre-type color gradient from the center to the edge that I really like. I have used pale pink painted glass alongside colorless glass, to give a pink hue to these stones. The pink glass is also decorated with some large flake glitter already. So I decided to embellish the glass with more real-metal glitter, but sprinkled on rather than poured so that the effect is deliberately patchy. You can see that I have to some extent outlined the crystal area with this white brass, glitter from Advanced Metallics. This glitter, being real metal, is very heavy and tends to stay where it's been put, which is a great advantage when being used in this way. If you use the metal glitter mixed into the resin before you pour it, then you need to give it a stir just before pouring to ensure that the glitter is in suspension within the resin as you pour. It will settle to the bottom given time, but it will be much more evenly spread this way, if that is what you're going for. To complement the pale colors of stones in this mini geode, I chose to use a Piccassio pigment called Pink Quarts. The mica pigments in this color already give both gold and pink notes like a metallic flip-paint color on a car. It changes color according to the direction that you view it from. So I only chose the one color for the resin pour for this mini. Since some of the quartz points used for the flower on this next mini are smoky in color. I didn't want to overwhelm not coloration by using strong colors. So for this acrylic geocode, I decided to also go with paler pinks this time. The white color is a white gold, which gives it its slightly creamy hue. Finally, I have my green aventurine and fluorite mini. Here. I wanted to complement the green coloring, but not match it completely. I chose a pearl white and a fairly dark green and allow them to mix to get multiple shades. I decided to allow the lilac coloring of some of the fluorite chips to add a subtly different flavor. But I decided not to pick up the lilac coloring in the resin, as I already knew the I will be using gold to embellish this piece with banding lines and glitter. And I thought adding a purple as well would make it too busy. Again, I made sure the edges were completely covered in resin and that is made easier when the resin becomes more liquid of the heating it to allow a bit more mixing. Because the stones on this mini already have color. There was no need to add color to the resin poured over the stones to outline them. So completely clear resin was used here. 8. Adding Geode Lines: Adding Drawn Geode Lines. I always think that adding these geode banding lines is a bit magical. They really change the feel of a piece. And they're also very relaxing to do. I usually choose pens which either tone or contrast with the colors of the geode. And I often use multiple different thicknesses of pen. Acrylic markers are ideal for this. If you use a water-based pen, such as this really fine black lining pen I'm using here, then you will need to spray the dried ink with a clear lacquer before putting anymore resin over the top as the ink will dissolve in the wet resin and smudge, otherwise. I'll ask me how I know. When adding geode lines I like to follow the contours of the colors in the resin and the edges of the, of the stones. I quite often will outline the stones using a gilding paint, as you can see me doing here. When that is dry, there is the possibility of adding geode lines over the top of the gilding paint, which you can see me doing with this green aventurine mini. I think that these little mini geodes look really good with very fine detailed lines. And using multiple lines, one outside the other, like this creates an intricacy to the pieces that adds lots of interest. These small artworks are designed to be seen up-close. If you are making a bigger artwork, designed to be viewed from much further away, you might very well go for much fatter geode lines. Wide white lines are particularly effective as they contrast beautifully with any strong color without adding any color of their own. And combining white with another color can be an effective combination. Whether your lines cross each other or not will depend on what you like, as well as how authentic you wish to be. In real geodes the lines rarely cross as they are formed by different layers crystallizing slowly as the geode cools. But there is no need to stick to this rule if you don't want to. Here on this mint green geode, you can see I've deliberately crossed my geode lines to give a sort of lacing effect, which I think is quite effective. Multiple colors of lines are also effective. And I like to make at least one of the lines in a metallic color, silver, copper or gold. But you can also choose metallic blue, pink, or green. If you can find the pens. Take a look at these examples of geode lines in different thicknesses and colors. And then try out some of your own, perhaps on scrap pieces of resin to see what works for you and your color choices. 9. Adding Metal Leaf: Adding Metal Leaf. To guild with metal leaf, you will need some glue. The ideal glue to use is gilding size. This glue goes on white and dries clear. It stays tacky for days, so you will not in any rush to guild it afterward. However, any glue will do if you are prepared for the fiddly nature of sticking the metal leaf to it before it dries. I have used paper-glue type stakes to successfully make good a part of the artwork that I forgot to paint with size or that didn't get a thick enough layer on. Or, you're in a hurry to repair the gilding and don't have the time for the size to dry. Adding metal leaf to dried size can be done in several ways. You can add whole leaves which you just lay on to the size and gently use a brush to remove the excess from the edges. Alternatively, you can use flakes of leaf, which you brush over the surface. Wherever the size is present, the gilding leaf will stick. You can add several different colors of leaf at once if you do it this way. Alternatively, mottled leaf patterns are available. If you are not going to pour resin over the top of your leaf, (whether you do this or not is personal preference) you will need to burnish the leaf to get it to stick firmly enough and to give it a really polished appearance. Burnishing is where you polish the leaf with a bit of pressure and a non-abrasive pad or fingertip, for example, to push it firmly into contact with the size and to make the surface really shine. This step is not necessary if you're going to pour resin over the top, which is my personal preference usually. I like to use metal leaf on the edges of a piece to finish it and yet give interest. I also like for the edges not to be too neat. Geodes actually have a rough rock layer. I don't want to recreate grey rocks in my artworks, you might, but I don't want a perfectly finished edge either. Again, you might prefer this, in which case, I suggest you tape your edges to make a barrier to stop the resin pouring over the edges. And then use gilding size and metal leaf to produce a really clean edge to your picture. I think I would still then trim the lip on the edge of the piece and add a final flood coat of resin that is allowed to go over the edges of the work to protect the gold leaf. Although if you have burnished sufficiently, then you really don't need to do that so long as you have used real gold leaf, not the much cheaper alloy type. Another way of using metal leaf is to mix up flakes into the resin you pour over your artwork. Here, I've chosen to use a copper leaf mixed with colourless resin to pick up the copper colored mica pigment used in the design. You will see that I have also used a copper gilding polish to finish the edges of this piece before adding this metal leaf-flaked resin over the top. This has two benefits. It both protects and makes the edge gilding polish really shine once it is covered in resin. You can see that the copper leaf flakes here add a texture to the design that was not present before. The leaf also makes the resin setup proud of the surface. If you don't like this effect, then you can submerge this copper leaf under another layer of colorless resin. This will make the surface flat again, but it will also give the artwork some real depth is the metal leaf will cast shadows if lit obliquely. Resin is really the only media you can use this way to cast shadows to create depth other than glass, which is of course much more difficult to work with. 10. Finishing: Finishing. Acrylic sheets comes with protective plastic on the top. and bottom. Before pouring the resin to make the geode, the top layer of plastic was removed, but I left the protective film on the bottom so as to keep the back of the geode clean. Once the resin has set, then this can be removed. Cured resin is hard and as you can see, it stays put, causing the protective film to tear rather than peeling off as desired. If you use a heat gun to soften the resin, however, you can easily remove even hard-cured resin from the back of the acrylic. Beware of overheating the acrylic and particularly the plastic film as it will melt and burn if it is heated to excess. More than that, be careful of touching the heated part as it may still be hot. I recommend using gloves. They can be the thin latex or nitrile type, just to protect your fingertips from the heat. If you have taped the back of your geode piece, then this can be removed after the resin has cured in a similar way to the plastic film from the acrylic. You can risk putting fingerprints on your geode by removing the tape after only eight or ten hours. However, if you allow your resin to completely cure, then you can still easily remove the tape if you use the heat gun to soften the resin, as I explained before. Here you can see how easy it is to remove tape from resin that is completely hard-cured without any difficulty. The resin is hard and so you don't risk damaging your art work if you wait before removing the tape this way. This resin geode has drips of resin on the bottom of the crystals around the central hole. To remove these I used an electric sander. It could easily be achieved by hand sanding. If that's what you prefer. These mini geodes have resin drips on the base and these removed by sanding. You have a choice to take it right back to the MDF base material, or you can leave a texture of resin on the bottom, just removing enough of the drips that the geode can sit down flat onto the frame or wall where it is displayed. The aim of sanding the edges of the geode piece is to smooth out any roughness so that the artwork is easy and comfortable to handle when moving or hanging it. The aim is to just smooth it off, and the best test you have that it's finished, is not made by looking, but by feeling how smooth the edges are. Beware of sanding before the resin is completely hard. The dust created will stick to tacky resin and spoil your mirror finish surface. In addition, if you have any other resin in your studio curing, protect it from sanding dust or you may well spoil the surface of that too. After, trimming and sanding and removing tape. The next step is deciding on whether you want to frame your geode or if you want to leave it unframed. For all the geodes made during the filming of this course, I have completed edges, so there is no necessity to frame at all, if you don't want to, and usually I don't frame my geodes. This makes perfect sense if you're geode is not rectangular or square, as finding a suitable frame in that case would be quite difficult. Although bespoke frames can always be made if you have the funds or even the skills to make it yourself. Making frames is beyond the scope of this course! However, I am going to show you my mini geodes in frames. My mini geodes lend themselves to framing because of their geometric shape. Not only that, but because they are only 12 centimeters on a side, adding a frame increases the impact of the artwork. For all of these mini geodes, I selected box frames. Some are less deep, and some much more so. Here is a speeded up sequence of how I actually attach the geodes to the frame. I have used tape to fix the geode in the correct central place on the backing board, remembering to include the mount as it cannot be added afterwards. Having placed the geode in the right place, I flip the geode and backing board over and drill guide holes for 2 attaching screws. Since the backing board is only quite thin and fragile, I use washers to stop the screws from pulling right through the board. The MDF I used for the geode base is 18 millimeters thick. So I chose 12 millimeter long screws which have no chance of breaking through to the front of the geode, but they are long enough to securely hold what can be relatively heavy artworks, due to the weight of MDF and resin, and of course, the stones too. The frames I chose have the opportunity to mount the artwork in one of two different positions. And the tigers-eye mini you can see framed here, is mounted in the highest position so the geode protrudes from the box frame much more. This allows the edges of this geode to be featured more, but the framing effect is less. This metallic-shades mini has crystals that hang down below the edges of the MDF. This means that this artwork needed to be raised up from the base. And so I decided to make this a feature of the framing of this artwork. As you can see in this sequence, I chose to use another piece of 18 millimeter thick MDF glued to the back of the artwork. This pedestal is much smaller than the geode to give the impression that the geode is floating in the frame. It is also not centrally placed. This is because all the crystals and thus most of the weight are on one side of the geode. So to balance the pedestal needed to be nearer to that side. The crystals extending beyond the edge of the geode's square base also prevents the pedestal from being seen from that side too and setting the geode into a deep box frame completes the floating illusion. For this geode, I chose to use the glass insert behind the geode, to add a bit of brilliance. And consequently, I couldn't drill or screw through it. So I used hot glue to stick the geode into place. As an experiment this worked quite well and the geode appears to be firmly affixed into place. To mount the geodes that are not going to go into frames. I attached to some shark-tooth picture hangers. For the mint green geode I couldn't decide which way up I wanted to hang the geode to display it. And so I attached two hangers so there is a choice. To make sure your hanger is in the correct position, you should pick up the geode and so long as it is not too heavy, hold it up between fingers and thumb in approximately the orientation you prefer. The hanger should be on the vertical line below where you are holding it so that the angle stays the same. And nearer to the top of the geode - five to ten cm from the top, depending on how big the geode is. If you do this, then when you hang your geode, it should be balanced left to right, and be stable the way up you prefer it. And if you can't decide, then, like me, you can add more than one hanger. Acrylic can also accept screws and so I could attach hangers to these two geodes too However, both these geodes are sufficiently transparent that any hanging hardware would show. So I have chosen to display these pieces flat on a table top or propped up, or on a transparent acrylic plate stand against a window to allow that ethereal transparency to be shown off to its best effect. My 'Rainbow Thankfulness' geode is currently displayed on a rather large transparent acrylic stand of this type. So you can see how this sort of presentation method works. This final sequence shows all of the geodes framed and finished for you to compare and contrast and allow you to see the different mounting and framing methods in use. 11. Final Thoughts: Final thoughts. I hope by now you have been inspired to design a geode artwork and be planning to make it, or have already done so. Resin is ideally suited to creating gorgeous and glittering geode art. And the variations on a theme are endless. You could make two or three piece geodes or add lights to them to add even more interest. My mint green geode lights up and I'm hoping to show you how to add light into your art work in a future course. I hope you enjoyed watching this geode making course, and if you liked it, please follow me as I have further projects for new resin courses planned. If there was any part of the course you didn't like or didn't understand, was unclear or you think could be improved, then please let me know and I will endeavour to improve it or clarify any issues. Please feel free to visit my website if you would like to buy any of the geodes made during this course, they are all for sale on fuzzycomma.com. And if you would like to see more process videos and geode designs, I will be adding them to my Fuzzy Comma YouTube channel @fuzzycomma Instagram channel and tik tok channels as I make them. Please feel free to follow me and share my posts. Thank you so much for watching.