Sunday, August 31, 2014

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Happy Patron

It's always wonderful to see one of my art patrons so happy with a piece of my this case,  my best friend who has supported me from the start. She loved my ink paintings, House on Thistle Downs Drive and The Timekeeper's Cottage , so much so that she bought them both. She also purchased Ladies on a Park Bench , which I painted with my homemade walnut ink. For her birthday this past winter I made her a card using a similar style and the same walnut ink. It depicts us both on a park bench where I have just presented her with a birthday cake, candles blazing and all. Today she came to visit and showed me the paintings. Two that were matted and awaiting frames and one already framed. I was most impressed that she had combined the two walnut ink paintings into one format. Clever gal! I hope you enjoy them all for a very long time, Betsy. Love you! 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Back to the Inks

Last night I cut myself a few 5" x 7" pieces of Yupo and played with my Adirondack alcohol inks. Here are some of my results. They are simple little abstracts and it felt so good to let the inks loose and let them do what they do. No plan, just play. Seems I usually wind up with a lot of tree shapes emerging or maybe I see trees in almost every abstract. I do like to add inks that have more open time like Pitch Black or one of the mixatives. Then I can manipulate them with a bamboo skewer or some other tool before they are too dry.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Evergreen ~ collage (complete)

With so many metallics involved, this collage was difficult to photograph. I had to resort to using the flash on my camera to pick up the green hues which, in turn, blew out other colors. I'm afraid this is the best image I'm going to get and the closest to reality.

It has occurred to me that summer is coming to an end soon. Colder temps mean closed windows so I'd better get out the alcohol inks and get painting before that happens. Proper ventilation when using these inks is a must because of my COPD. I do miss ink painting and I can and will return to collage during the winter months. In the mean time I'm having a ball sourcing/creating decorative papers, stamps and discovering techniques that I can apply to this new (to me) art form.  

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Second Collage ~ WIP 2

All the pieces are now completed and adhered in place. I had thought of adding a few other shapes (maybe flying birds?) but decided against it. I think there's enough going on as is. There was a little struggle at the bottom of the piece so I used a cut mat to create better perspective and wound up adding two more shapes. Now I'm going to call this one done. Pine tree shapes were my inspiration so I'm thinking of titling this collage 'Evergreen'.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Second Collage ~ WIP

I wanted to post a quick update so my visitors can see where I'm going with this collage. It's clear I will need to make more triangles but I'm well on my way to completion. The papers I've made tend to curl once they're mounted on the yellow backing paper so tape was used to hold a few in place. Sorry for the blurry images. I didn't bother with a tripod. The goal was mainly to record the placement of the various pieces. I found a way to make quick work of the triangles. Each one was hand torn using a metal straight edge, then placed on the backing paper in a pattern similar to a backgammon board. After each triangle was glued and dry I used a small flat brush and a bit of water to moisten the backing paper between each piece and gently separated them, much like tearing watercolor paper. When completed this collage should measure approx. 9" x 18".    

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Collage Paper/Prep

Has it been an entire week since I last posted an update? I guess so! I've been busy trolling the 'net looking at video demos, browsing paper sources, all while waiting for a couple orders of paper I knew I couldn't produce myself (like bark paper) to arrive. In the meantime, I sketched out a possible idea for another collage. Starting yesterday work began on producing the decorative papers needed to realize my vision. I used Liquitex acrylic paint and lumiere metallic light body acrylics on tracing paper, let dry and using a metal ruler, I tore them into the intended shapes. These same shapes were then mounted on a golden yellow handmade(not by me!) paper I've had for several years. Looking at my sketch I'll need about 24 of these triangles to complete the task. I may use some decorative papers I purchased online to help the process along. I stacked the chosen papers and scanned them so I could see how they look together on screen. Maybe I should glue what I've posted all together as is and call it good...huh?

Note: I kept my Quiller color wheel by my side as I selected my color palette. It makes decisions so much easier for me.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

First Collage & Impression Lifting (How To)

I've been busy making paste papers these days. Not only does black Artagain work but Stonehenge kraft paper as well. I coated a piece of kraft paper with Liquitex gloss medium, let dry, then applied alcohol ink and blending solution. The inks moved very well on the surface, similar to Yupo. A particular piece of inked kraft paper inspired a landscape collage. The first collage I've been fairly happy with after many disasters. I'm not sure why I struggle with this art form so much. I believe I over think it. Whatever the problem, I'm determined to overcome. In this case I brought all my problems to bear and sorted them out on a single piece of 5" x 7" landscapes, collage and my latest focus, color theory. It's a conglomeration of paste papers, yellowed newspaper, a catalog image, colored pencil and acrylic paint. I threw a mat on it and scanned it. Sorry for the dirty looking mat. That's alcohol ink that has become a permanent part of my scanner bed. :(

I'd like to share another technique I tried today...impression lifting aka photo transfer. I printed out an image on glossy paper, then applied a thick coat of acrylic gel gloss medium over the image. I allowed it to dry thoroughly, then soaked it in warm water for a few minutes. Once the paper looked completely saturated I turned the image face down and used a damp paper towel to gently rub away the backing paper from the actual image which had now become 'one' with the acrylic medium. It's a bit of a mess but it went fairly fast. The result is a semi-transparent image that can be adhered to another surface, in this case, kraft paper. Note: If you give this a go be sure to take care in handling the image after the backing paper has been removed. The image will be a little stretchy and delicate. 

Friday, August 08, 2014

Homemade Paste Papers

I created these four papers with Lumiere light body metallic acrylic on black Artagain paper

Although I've been studying my Quiller color wheel and painting every day, nothing worth posting has been produced. To say I'm frustrated would be putting it mildly but I will persevere. In the meantime I've ordered a small set of tube acrylics which were on sale(!) but haven't arrived yet. I'm using that as an excuse to purposely sidetrack myself.

A good friend of mine was downsizing her library of art instruction books and sent me a book written by Susan Pickering Rothamel. It's titled The Art of Paper Collage . Yes, collage...another art form that has sent me screaming. Today I needed a break from landscapes so I tried Rothamel's idea of creating homemade paste papers, those decorative and very seductive papers(I know you've seen them in catalogs and drooled)that can be so pricey if purchased ready made. She suggested putting down a layer of acrylic medium or other gloss adhesive on paper to stop absorption. Let dry, then go over the surface with acrylics or dry pigment mixed with gloss medium. Before the paint dries add texture with stamps, combs or other tools. Another layer of medium can be applied and various embellishments can be included as well. One is only limited by their imagination and wealth of supplies.

Note: I follow Elizabeth Nelson (Paper Paintings Collage Artwork) on Facebook. She mentioned the wisdom of making your own decorative papers. Not all ready made and exotic papers are acid free or lightfast. Creating your own papers guarantees they are archival and also provides endless color and design choices.

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Color Theory ~ split comp 3

I fear it's going to get a whole lot of ugly around here until I get this split comp thing down. I have no idea if this is good or bad. I'm working from Quiller's personal color wheel and using his suggested tube colors. For blue/green he prefers Phthalo Turquoise, which I happened to have in stock. For the analogous compliments I had Quin. Red, Alizarin Crimson and I had to make my own red/orange from Cad. Orange and Quin. Red. These are a combo of colors I never in a million years would've chosen for a painting. I threw in some white gouache to create a few opaque colors.

Once I have the colors I must decide how best to distribute them throughout the painting. Which colors should be neutralized? Which should stay pure? Lordy! On top of that, many other widely varying secondary colors can be created. For instance, Quin. Red and Phthalo Turquoise make a stunning blue/violet which can be used to neutralize the orange/red.

Note: I got the idea for this landscape from a photo I saw on Paint My Photo. I liked the strong horizontal lines. I think the straight line through the lower third of the piece is actually a bike path in reality but I loved the effect it lent to this landscape. 

Friday, August 01, 2014

Color Theory ~ pt. 2

In my second color study Yellow Ochre was used as the dominant, Ultramarine Violet and Prussian Blue as intermediates and Ultramarine Blue as the subordinate.
In this color study I used Prussian Blue and UB as the dominant colors, Yellow Ochre as the intermediate and Ultramarine Violet as the subordinate.

Here are a couple of split comp paintings recently completed. This time I used a semi neutral, in this case Yellow Ochre. Then I selected Ultramarine Blue, a teriary color and the compliment of Yellow Ochre. Within the range opposite of Yellow Ochre on the color wheel, I chose Ultramarine Violet(a secondary color) and another semi neutral, Prussian Blue. In hindsight I should've chosen Indigo blue because Prussian Blue lies just outside the correct range of hues.

Before I go on I'd like to make a correction. I mistakenly called DS Undersea Green a teriary color in my previous post. It probably should be considered a semi neutral, maybe even a neutral. Whatever it is, it's a combination of Ultramarine Blue and Quin. Gold Deep. It's neutral qualities worked well with my previous palette plus I like the color!