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Mixed Media Designing

Mixed media is not a floral style of design

It is an art term that refers to any visual work of art which uses more than one medium. It is applicable to many art forms: painting, sculpture, patchwork, embroidery etc.

It uses a combination of visual mediums e.g. paint, many variety of papers, crayon, pencil, sand, fibre, fabric, wood, metal, buttons, plastic, rubber – in fact, the list of mediums is endless; anything at all may be used.

A floral art mixed media design will include plant material. The plant material may be fresh, dried or processed. Fresh plant material should be selected for its good keeping qualities e.g. mature foliage, berries, fruit, succulents. Small phials may also be used. The plant material may be subordinate.

The FASNZ fundamentals of design apply to a mixed media floral design. Other characteristics of a mixed media floral design are:

  • All components both organic and non-organic will be selected for their design qualities
  • Contrast of textures is important
  • Forms and shapes are important
  • The colour may be a related or a contrasting harmony
  • It may or may not have a theme
  • It is usually contemporary or abstract in design but does not have to be
  • It will have good 3rd dimension
  • All components will have good unity
  • It will require sturdy construction and sound mechanics

These designs are examples of Mixed Media floral designs done by the FASNZ Area Canterbury and South Canterbury “Clippings” group at a workshop tutored by Jenny Harris and Liz Chapman.

[Click photos for a larger view]




The mixed media components in this design are small squares of sand paper pinned onto the form.

The top placement is sand, glued to a painted form.

The plant material is dried aspidistra foliage and gleditsia pods.




A painted form covered with tissue paper are the mixed media components in this design.

Malus fruit and a leaf provide the plant material.




The vertical shape has been bound with natural string in this example of a mixed media design.

Handmade paper is glued to the disc form.

The design is completed with a flax leaf and a tomato.




This design uses copper pipe and a paper covered form.

The magnolia foliage gives good overall colour unity to the design.




This design is a silver painted form staged on a silver stand.

A piece of rubber is also included.

Autumn foliage and malus fruit complete the design.

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