Tuesday, February 25, 2014

New Classes and 5 Reasons to love INK!

I have finalized my teaching schedule through September. I am doing a Mixed Media series at my studio in Grants Pass, OR. I have decided to work my way through some of my favorite mediums and see how far we can take them. For more information on my studio classes you can click on the links above. I will also be teaching at CREATE- Chicago in August and Art-Is-You - Petaluma in September. Art-Is-You registration is open now, so check it out. As soon as Create Chicago goes live, I will post my classes here on the blog.
The first class will be Mixed Media Play with INK, so I though I would share some of reasons I am so in love with ink.

No. 1: Even simple india ink, a bamboo skewer and copy paper can make something unexpected....

No. 2: The color of ink is really saturated and you can do amazing things with black and white or color:

No. 3: Because ink is fluid, you can do amazing things on fabric:
Acrylic ink and Walnut ink on raw canvas with a few pencil details added.
No. 4: Acrylic Ink works great on top of gesso - gives the surface a watercolor effect when diluted and dries permanent, so you can keep working without fear of reactivating it.

No: 5: Drawing with ink is my all time favorite because it takes my control away. 

Here is a progression of my recent painting. I used unstretched, gessoed canvas 24"x 30" and sewed pockets in the top and bottom to receive a dowel. This way it can be hung without expensive framing. I applied collage and texture to the surface and then drew my character with the dropper:
Worked on the floor then lifted it for drips....

Mid painting process with just black and white paint and more ink.
Finished piece...I think!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


I am having fun "re-imagining" old artwork and playing with new concepts. Here is another before and after:
This is a piece I did back in 2011. The face is pretty bizarre...even for my standards. I loved the body, eyes and the 2 birds on the head, so it was tricky to work around the painting. I added a book page to cover up the bottom part of the face to make it easier to paint, then added a new figure's face who worked better with the winged body. At one point I painted over the turquoise with orange, hated it, painted a warm grey over it and sanded it back a bit so the orange showed through.
Here it is a few stages past that...already dramatically different. The pigtails on the main figure came about because of the odd line at the top of the head. I had to keep it if I wanted to keep the birds!
I painted over the other bird - it was distracting me. I did not like the nose and went a bit crazy trying to fix it. Somehow the turquoise crept back into the face....
I move the nose over a bit....Here is the final piece:
At least I think so....I am going to let it sit a bit, before I varnish it.

My take away from this exercise:
Each painting has something new to teach me.
Keep at it until you love it again.
Many layers make for a much richer background.
Love turquoise, orange and gray together.
When you can't make it work, cover it up with collage or paint!

When things are drying, I try to work on journal pages. I am still getting used to the handmade paper in the leather journal I picked up. It is becoming clear that I need to just relax and not try to control the surface. I have sketchbooks for drawing. This is becoming my "get loose" book.
Here are a couple of pages:
Watercolor and collage

Medium resist and watercolor
Playing with which watercolor set I like best ended up being  really fun.
The Ultimate in RE-IMAGINING

Stay Curious!