Saturday, June 18, 2016

Crackled Earth, Suspended Trees

What a relief it is that our sulky, hot-tempered El Nino has taken his toys and gone home, leaving us waiting for what his sister has in mind for us, the rest of the year. She is more prone to tearful rages, but is often more cool and aloof.  We'll see.  Looks like she has already started her gentle rains in our Pacific Northwest.

I have been playing more seriously with Golden textural mediums, acrylic bases for paintings on hardboard surfaces, lately.  I'm having a lot of fun with the crackle paste, which shrinks a bit as it dries, leaving a crazed surface similar to the glaze at the bottom of a Japanese tea bowl.  I discovered how staining the surface on one side with a diluted mix of water and instant espresso crystals immediately draws the dark liquid across through the cracks in a very dramatic way!  This acrylic painting was inspired by a little sketch I did on a sticky note sheet a number of months ago.  I like it so much, and I take it as a good sign that each time I study it, theme and variations of this image pops into my imagination, wanting to be expressed. SOON!

Cradled hardboard with espresso and acrylic paint, 8" x 10" 

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Creative Transparency

Some of my best ideas come either in the shower, or out walking on our property.  Or when the rain is showering me as I walk on our property. Forest and water seem to be great conduits for the Muse, and I'll take all the conductivity I can get.  

Today there were some pretty phenomenal images that passed through my mind, and as usual, about 82% of them were gone by the time I was sitting at my drafting table, but the gist was layers of images painted on transparencies, laid over each other and scanned. I have water media polyester transparency film here in the studio that I've done nothing with but cut stencils out of, so that seemed a good place to start.  Don't believe them when they claim one can watercolor on them.  What a mess! However, some of this image of a woman was watercolor, and when I realized how awful that was, I reinforced with acrylic paint on the back of the film.  Much better!  Still not like paper, but more versatile in that, well, you can layer it over other background stuff! I took some of my Masa Printmaking Paper I have crinkled and done paint spills on in the past, and laid the face over it before scanning.  Even the signature was slipped in at the last minute, white Liquetex Ink on a transparency
bit, like a physical watermark! It's sort of disconcerting I don't have a "hard copy" of this image, but the upside is, I can re-use the bits and pieces over and over, in different ways.  

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Temple Attendants

It's been awhile since I posted here, it seems so easy to get carried away with life, forgetting the priorities and habitual joys that have defined it until, like Wile E. Coyote, I looked down and saw my trajectory had taken me off the cliff and into space. My feet forgot somewhere along the past weeks that they were no longer touching "ground".

On a vacation visit to Lake Crescent, Washington, recently, Jim and I stayed in accommodations near the lake, enjoying a few days of rest.  Jim got some nice photography time in, and I tried out a new sketchbook I'd ordered, designed for wet media.  It sucked.  The sizing on and in the paper was so water-resistant, the watercolors slid around and nearly came off the surface again with each paint stroke. Hmm.  What to do with this book? Oh, yeah, mixed media! Or, whatever wonderful wet media I love to play with.  So this sub-standard book has become a perfect place to practice collage and acrylic painting techniques.  

Or acrylic ink stamping. Or whatever.  I refer to this study as "Temple Attendants".  Not sure what their story is. It's waiting to be written.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

An Old Friend

I stumbled across an image of a sculpture I'd created maybe fifteen years ago, and sold at one of my fave galleries so soon after he was completed, I never got a chance to get him to the pro photographer in time.  Fortunately, my dear Neil was a fair photographer, and we did get this image of "Milestone" before he was gone.  He's about 21inches tall, I think.  I wonder how my children are all faring out there in the world, snug in their homes, scattered around the globe.

Monday, April 4, 2016

A Two-Handed Blind Contour Portrait

Not long ago, a group of us Feral Creatives gathered at the home of one of our sisterhood over looking the salt water. We laughed, drank, ate and arted.  At some point, I had passed out small pieces of heavy watercolor paper, and asked each of the group to pick a partner. Without looking at the paper, we were to draw an ink line of our partner's face (and vice versa), never lifting the pen until the drawing was done. The results, of course, were hysterically funny, and we wiped the tears from our eyes in astonishment of our efforts.  Some traded their sketches, and took them home.  

My partner was my dear friend, Pam. This is the ink contour she did of me, and I've had it sitting on display in my living room for months, just as it was. Today I filled it in with watercolor (we'd given each other permission to do so), as I love to do with blind contour selfies sometimes. Okay, well, all the time.  Not a bad collaboration, right?  

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Beyond The Crevice In Our Understanding

This is a painfully inadequate photo taken on my iPad of a new abstract painting I've done (I couldn't fit it onto my scanner) as a homework assignment for my new online class with Karine Swenson, a marvelous painter. It's called, Abstraction: Diving Deeper. It's not the first abstract I did for this course, but it's the one I'm satisfied with....a bit. It incorporates my familiar pigment spills with acrylic painting on watercolor paper, with texture created from Golden Molding Paste.  The molding paste was then painted over, and sanded back, to interesting effect, I think.  I've had mixed reactions from fellow students. What do you think, should I move on to canvas or board from paper?  It would solve some of the wrinkle problems, maybe.  

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Segmented Nocturnal Tuliary

I know, what the heck is that?  Not sure.  The critters sneak onto my work through the cracks in my imagination.  They start as the involuntary images that pop briefly into view when my eyes are closed in bed at night, waiting for sleep.  The next thing I know, they've slithered onto my paintings, making themselves comfortably at home. This one is iridescent, catching the light on it's armor.  Let's hope it doesn't eat paper.