Thursday, March 31, 2016

The Fly

This one took two tries and it still could use some grounding with a few shadows now that I see it on screen. I used Ranger Pearl mixative on the wings to make them look more fly wing-y and I added the veining with a Prismacolor colored pencil...Violet Blue, I think. A waxy pencil on Yupo, you say? I know but I'm fairly certain it'll be permanent after a good spray or two of Krylon gloss varnish.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Which Came First?

The cocoon or the bug? Well, in this case, the chrysalis. I used Adirondack Copper mixative on the bark of the branch. It has great texture that works well for this type of application. When the inks were dry and the frisket film was removed I went over everything with a wash of Da Vinci green gold fluid acrylic thinned with a little water and let it puddle and dry. That produced some nice texture in the background.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

More Bugs

Here's the latest efforts, hot off the easel. I may have to redo the yellow moth. If you look closely I forgot my own advice and cut into the Yupo too far. It's easy to do. I should have another update tomorrow but there may be a very short break while I wait for more frisket film and liquid frisket to arrive from Blick. I was surprised how quickly I ran out!

FYI, if you want perfection don't work with these inks, at least not in this manner. There will invariably be imperfections here and there. As Vivi at the gallery says, "it's the hand of the artist". Much like watercolor, these inks work best if left to go their own way to some extent.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Bug Me ~ a new series

Spring is coming and it looks like Mamas' got her ink on again. I finally have a new direction and it's about time, too. 2015 kicked my behind health-wise and I'm still dealing with the aftermath. It's difficult for me to sit for any length of time at my work area because of severe arthritis in my spine and I wound up losing all my forward momentum. This past week I told myself I will paint two bugs every day no matter how I feel and so far I'm doing it. And it feels good. I just love bugs and I love alcohol ink so this series makes perfect sense to me.

I'm using the frisket film still which allows me to pour the inks to my bugs with abandon. Occasionally I use a little liquid masque as well. I'm only limited by my imagination. In addition to the alcohol ink I've been embellishing a few of my bugs with Brilliance Archival pearlescent inks .  
Jo Ann's was having a sale on these ink pads and I couldn't resist.

All the paintings are small (5" x 7") and are surprisingly labor intensive. If anyone wishes to give this a go let me give you some tips.

  1. Make sure your working Yupo is completely covered by the frisket film. Otherwise the inks have a way of sneaking underneath and winding up in areas they shouldn't.
  2. When applying the film be sure to leave no creases or bubbles, again for the reason listed above.
  3. Be sure to keep a sharp blade in your Exacto knife for clean cuts. The moment the blade starts to drag change it.
  4. When cutting out the shapes fight the urge to bare down too hard on the blade. You don't want to cut through the Yupo. A light hand on the handle of the knife helps.
  5. You can draw on matte frisket film to give yourself guide lines if you wish. 
  6. After you've made your cuts hold the Yupo up to the light so you can see your cut lines. I miss spots all the time so I recommend double checking. Also double check after you've removed the Yupo from your cut shapes and before you start inking. Frisket film tears easily and some little pieces might get left behind.  
  7. Work as clean as possible. Nothing is more heartbreaking than a big ink smudge on a new ink painting. This is one of the biggest challenges for me.
  8. Happy inking!