Painting The Natural Environment With Recyclables

Bush Patterns in Acrylics,

I fished out the netting from my oranges this week with the plan of recycling.  I thought I’d reuse my net for a lovely textural pattern.  But I wasn’t sure what or precisely how. .. Yet.  I needed to do a bit of research.

Bush Patterns in Acrylics,
Bush Patterns in Acrylics

Recycle  Household Items

First  I did my recycling. My oranges came out of their netted bag, which I then cut  the bag into various shapes to use.

I’d already decided to use the orange mesh netting as this was part of my series for Orange that I’m working on.  I just needed to come up with plans and ideas of how to use this stuff!


For some,  I stretched the netting in some areas so the weave would open quite wide, as well as other areas being narrower weave.  I like the contrast.

Plus, I also cut my styrofoam into squares, thinking I’d use them as templates or stencils.  I guess they are ready for the next art event I’ll do, as they didn’t get used this time.


Review of Reference Resources

Next,  I thumbed through my prior week’s  walking photos.

Bush Walk in Spring, Perth,
Bush Walk In Spring

This Bush Walk photo serves as an inspiration, for my   “Bush Patterns in Acrylics”  which has the same soft natural outdoors flavour as the photograph.  But of course, is much more abstracted.


Paintings of nature using recycled goods
Nature Using Recycled Products

Nature  Using Recycled Products, above,  also uses the netting but in a broader all over approach.   The Wattle yellow-orange was done with a nice Pyrrol Orange and Quinacridone Gold/Sienna mix.  I also used Prussian Blue Pb27.   

Spring Walk, Perth WA parkslands,
Spring Walk


Preparing the Materials and Equipment

I’d researched my bush walk photos, sorted them out, then the next step is the materials.


I decided that today I’d use DIY gelli plate,  Golden Fluid acrylics,  with a natural colour scheme as the dominating feature.   With the DIY gelli plate in hand, along with the Golden fluid acrylic paints I went to work.

I laid down the recyled orange netting onto the gelli plate,  then  squirted some quinacidone gold, sienna, prussian on the plate.


With a good brayer,  I rolled the paint on.   I told you,  that ORANGE is a marketing tool!

I do have several  cheap brayers.  They stick, won’t roll, have cuts, grooves in them.  They’re really annoying.  Especially more so recently.

One of my friends had lent me her fabulous Holbein brayer to give it a go a few weeks ago.  Wow,  It worked!    Needless to say,  after many many years  I now have a decent brayer to call my own.


I can not say enough about having Good Quality materials.  Even If  – you are a beginner.  Even if it does cost 2x more.

All the crummy brayers I’d bought,  thinking a newer one of those would work better, ended up costing me more than double what I actually paid for my fabulous good brayer.


Colours of Lupine, texture using orange bag netting,
Colours of Lupine


Lupine Blossoms, photograph,
Lupine Blossoms

I loved my little walk around the park just around the corner, it was filled with magnificent blues.  The spring lupines were popping out in cobalt, ultramarine, hints of cerulean they were just lovely.


I placed the recycled mesh netting,  on the gelli plate and then squeezed out some naples yellow, cobalt teal blue,  french ultramarine.  Gave it a quick roll, but not over doing it, as I didn’t want the colours to mush up all together.

With this one,  I would probably go back into it to paint a focal point flower shape into the composition.



The feature image,  Bush Patterns of Lemongrass

The very top feature image  Bush Patterns,  besides the recycled mesh netting I also laid onto the gelli plate lemongrass leaves and its seed heads.

I wanted a more natural organic feel. This addition created a very happy multi coloured textural shaped that I find appealing.


With all of these art images, I found that using the recycled mesh netting was a great tool. I wasn’t a big fan of it previously. And,  I may not use it every time, but I will certainly use this approach more often now.





Published by debiriley

The act of creation, in any media is a fascinating and magical process. I simply love to create. Expressing in color, line, tone, texture - as if, they were words upon a page. Creating a uniquely me, interpretation. Enjoy More of my "one-of-a-kind" expressive art at and,

13 thoughts on “Painting The Natural Environment With Recyclables

    1. thank you Laura! I know I should put more photos in, but then, I think about “going over my WP limit” and rethink and take out about half the photos! 🙂 need to do an ebook. lol

      Liked by 1 person

    1. hi Sharon! I appreciate your thoughtful comment 🙂 Previously, I’ve steered clear of those types of things in my art, but decided WHY Not? Thank you Sharon.

      Liked by 1 person

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