DIY Acrylic Painting Clock

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

(sorry I'm not dressed very presentably - it was a lazy day at home!)

Hello there :-)
Ever since secondary school ended for me last year, I've actually been embarking on several original Do-It-Yourself projects to redesign my room (well actually I have an even bigger project behind everything but yes these are just glimpses of what I'm doing) at the same time and I finally finished one yesterday after a lot of procrastination. I actually took around 2 months to finish it when it could just have taken at most 2 weeks because I procrastinated so much and was really lazy to continue it sometimes. At first I wanted to paint my own painting but decided I should make it even cooler but having it double as a clock as well! 

I'm really really glad at how it turned out in the end though and am so very proud of it - even my mum who is not very generous with her praises most of the time saw the end product and this was how our conversation went down:

Mum: Very nice
Me: Ya, actually not bad right
Mum: No, it's very nice

So yes I'm super happy with it and she was the one who actually discouraged me and had no faith in me at all when I told her I was going to paint my own acrylic painting and turn it into a clock as well. I remember how painting and art in general used to be my "talent" and interest until I was crushed when I entered RGS and didn't really take art seriously anymore so it's actually been a refreshing experience to embark on aesthetic projects again and it's been amazing so far. It's honestly such an escape from the things that are happening around - painting's such a slow and chill activity. 

And because my post on Instagram garnered so many comments (thank you guys hehe), I wanted to let people know that it's actually really really really easy to make your own acrylic painting clock - when I first started I thought it was impossible and I didn't even know if one could pierce through canvas properly but you actually can and you don't really need any artistic talent to make this - just patience and the right tools. So here's how you can make your own!

What You Need: 
(I got everything from Art Friend and to be honest, it wasn't cheap - I think it costs around $60 in total but I really wanted something unique and original and something I could really call my own and be proud of so yup and it's actually a lot cheaper compared to buying a designer clock! Plus you can really personalize this one and actually have fun in the process) 

1. Quartz Clock movement 
2. Clock hands (Optional because the Quartz clock movement itself comes with clock hands too but I wanted prettier ones)
3. Self adhesive numerals (Optional as well - you can simply paint the numbers on or not put any numbers at all)

4. Acrylic paint of your choice (I tried to use as few colours as possible because I'm not very neat nor patient when it comes to colourful paintings) 
5. Paintbrushes 

5. Stretched canvas (any size, any type - it can just be one but I chose to do a three part painting) 
The ones I got were two 7x9 inch and one 18x18 inch! 

6. Inspiration (if you are untalented like me I got mine from Pinterest - feel free to base everything from your own creativity though) 
7. Pencil to sketch 

Yup that's all and here's how to make it! :-) 

1. Sketch your design very bravely on your canvas - I know canvas is a little intimidating because it seems like such a professional medium to use but always remember that your paint will be able to go over any pencil strokes and there's no need to erase your pencil sketch if you happen to make a mistake - just go over it! 

2. Fun part - paint and go crazy! 

At the start you might feel like everything's going wrong because the layers aren't very thick and you can still see all the mistakes you make but no worries - patience will solve it all eventually. 

Just let loose and have fun :-) 

And always paint one layer by one layer only after the previous layer has dried thoroughly (I let them rest at least overnight because from experience, impatience does nothing to help) 

Cute blob of white paint - white can't cover much though unless it's a really thick layer! 

This was after about three layers of paint (yes i.e. at least three days) 

And this is after at least 10 layers of paint (yes patience is my virtue)! Especially because white gets dirty really easily and I really wanted to get my lines neat and it wasn't very easy with just a paintbrush.

3. Measure where you'd want to place your clock dial - I wanted mine in the middle of the largest piece of canvas so I had to be quite accurate with this. I initially wanted the dial coming out from the whale's eye but it didn't look good. 

4. Read your clock mechanism package very carefully and make sure you know how to assemble everything because it can actually get quite tricky - really fun though! 

5. Use a penknife to cut a hole for your clock movement - I know it feels really scary to do it but do it anyway! I actually took many photos of the painting first before I pierced through it in case I ruined it forever because I had the worry that the stretched canvas will somehow "deflate", if you know what I mean. 

6. Stick your clock mechanism through your painting and make sure it fits well but isn't too tight. 

7. Assemble everything (oh my goodness I love the clock hands they're so pretty) 

8. Place your self adhesive numerals around the clock, any way you like - accurately of course! Though I just eye-balled everything. 

Did the four corners first 

Yay not too bad for random placements! 

And that's really it :-) 

I really hope people try this out because it's really fun to do, it's actually quite easy (just needs patience!) and the outcome really does outweigh any inconveniences or difficulties. I haven't hung it up yet nor put a battery into it to actually get it working but I'm really excited to! 

Also, I didn't realize the idiom this entire painting reflected until Ragini mentioned it - Whale of a Time! It's such a witty and cute pun and I can't believe I didn't do it intentionally because it's honestly weird that I even decided to paint a whale in the first place but it really gives a whole new meaning to it and having a whale of a time has such a positive and fun vibe to it :') 

Anyway yes I'm working on several other DIY projects and I fear that I'll neglect them once JC starts for real (which is really really really soon) but if any of you would like me do share more DIY stuff, let me know! 

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