Thursday, October 28, 2010

and another evolution

and here's the evoluntion of the other heavily layered piece. the usual map & sheet music on the left, a wash of quince nickel azo, tissue paper, a stencil. stuck

and then i started reading rheni tauchid's book the new acrylics and patti brady's rethinking acrylic and became intrigued by the idea of layers of glazes and the use of interference and iridescent paints. so i started adding- below some prussian blue in spots-

i drizzled clear tar gel for texture and dipped lids in heavy gloss gel and stamped circles. i also added the elements below- a cardboard 1/2 circle (from a soap container in a hotel- i liked the corrugated cardboard & brought it home to make art with- what a weirdo!), the large circle in the lower left cut out from dried  paint peeled off of a roller tray and the small dark "open here" from a box of wine (yeah, well.....)

noticing a theme, i googled the symbolism of circles and found:

The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning. It represents the notions of totality, wholeness, original perfection, the Self, the infinite, eternity, timelessness, all cyclic movement, God ('God is a circle whose centre is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere' (Hermes Trismegistus)). As the sun, it is masculine power; as the soul and as encircling waters, it is the feminine maternal principle. "It implies an idea of movement, and symbolizes the cycle of time, the per petual motion of everything that moves, the planets' journey around the sun (the circle of the zodiac), the great rhythm of the universe. The circle is also zero in our system of numbering, and symbolizes potential, or the embryo. It has a magical value as a protective agent, ... and indicates the end of the process of individuation, of striving towards a psychic wholeness and self-realization" (Julien, 71).

added layers of glazes- some cadmium, more quince nickel azo and prussian, interference green, blue & red. i decided the black circle was too small & added what you see here. also added more circle stamps. like it, but it needs..... something..... and hangs in my office daily waiting to talk to me.

it was too bright, shiny & new- more prussian glaze, some iridescent copper- which i wiped back with alcohol. i also added some tissue (see the hands), which you can barely see, to provide some vertical linear movement in the center & on the left. and more circles, goopy titan white acrylic with washes on some spots, showing thru in others.

i liked it much better at this point, but still felt i was missing something. more days hanging on the wall. finally the numbers and linear semi circular stamp and now it feels done.

i am really happy with this, as it feels like the first abstract piece that i've been successful with. love the levels of layers, the depth and richness of color (which doesn't come through in the photo). i like the texture & find it interesting for those reasons. i bet people want to touch this, get up close to it and look at it for a long time.

i feel like i learned & solved some things and ended up with a good decent of art.

anyhoo- that's it- hope to get the studio wall seams caulked so i can paint so i can move art stuff there before thanksgiving so i can have my table back for turkey. and saturday i have to take some photos for a friend, anniversary dinner, then hanging day sunday at the gallery. um, yeah, busy weekend. oh, and start cleaning the house because my very good friend fay will be here in a few weeks- yay!

so maybe not so much art. but i did sign up for art every day month which i found a lot of fun & a great way to focus last year. might be a doodle a day or a photo a day, but it will be something!


Wednesday, October 27, 2010


it's always fun for me to see how a piece evolved from start to finish, especially when it has taken a while. i apologize up front for the color variations- the in progress shots taken in the house are a bit off, but you get the idea.

this started with some super heavy gesso that i scratched wiggly lines in. then i used it as a place to put left over pant- mainly prussian blue, but you can see some red on the right. the silver dots are from bubble wrap that i used on another piece &, again, dropped what was left of the paint here.

i've been reading books about layers & experimenting & texture, so i decided to add some crackle paste & light modeling paste. i stamped and drew circles in the wet paste to echo the bubble wrap. the design is light modeling paste pushed through a stencil. no idea why this one, but there are circles and swirly shapes that fit with the rest of the piece.

when the paste dried, i ran a wet paintbrush over it and added liquid irridescent bronze, which had been mixed with water & allowed to separate into bronze & blue. also used liquid turquoise. the paste sucked the color in & ran it together nicely.

ading texture & depth, i drizzled on clear tar gel, squiggly like the scratches on the bottom layer.

after that layer dried.

 the piece needed something to finish it. i decided to put self leveling gel over the whole thing for a smooth, glossy finish to tie it all together. you can't really tell, but there is gloss gel over the modeling & crackle paste to preserve it & the tar gel is glossy, but the rest was matte. i was also curious to see how the clear tar gel squiggles would show up.

masking tape around the edges, self leveling gel slathered on- with some areas higher than the gel layer.

and the finished product, which i think achieved the textural interest & feeling of layers i was after.

this was a fun one- i learned a lot, got to experiment and am happy with the outcome! yay! now if i could only come up with a name.....

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

2 more finished

these are done- and i'm happy with them. both are 10x10. i still need better photos- hard to shoot b/c they're both glossy and have lots of layers and interference colors. these are blurry due to shooting in indirect light w/o a tripod. but i like tham & wanted to share.

this is cosmos (or beginnings or something)

and i don't have a name here yet- maybe galaxy?

and it looks like boise state will pull it out, in convincing fashion- yay!

Monday, October 25, 2010

stronger together?

i've noticed over the years that there seem to be 2 basic approaches to how artists relate to other artists. there are those who are generous, share information, techniques, ideas and like to see other artists succeed. i am indebted to many artists who helped and encouraged me when i ventured out to try to show & sell my art. these people answered questions, gave helpful feedback, filled in gaps in my education and helped me brainstorm ways to get my art out there.

i am lucky enough to know people who help me write artist statements (thanks anne), figure out problems with pieces (thanks pam & nancy), stretch me and encourage my growth (thanks zella), send book and video ideas (thanks judy) and packs of goodies (thanks susan) and who, in general, make me a better artist and a better person. i know that i have forgotten to mention lots of people, and apologize, but to all of you who have commented on the blog, told me you like something i'm working on or that a photo touched you (barb, becky), offered ideas to help through a block- thanks.

i try to pay it forward and am always happy to share techniques, tell someone where to buy panels or have cards made, etc. i truly believe that the stronger we are as a group the better off we are individually. i do not believe that we are in competition with each other.

i've been able to avoid a lot of crap. gypsy gallery is my baby- we have a good group of artists who don't need hand holding, who are responsible and are happy to see each other succeed. anyone who doesn't operate that way doesn't last long- the gypsy queen has low tolerence for drama, and anyone who needs hand holding won't be happy with the group anyway.

being part of a cooperative gallery has been an eye opening experience. there are lots of great things about it. i've met great artists who are happy to share ideas & techniques. then there are those who don't operate that way. who don't seem to get that the stronger we are as a group the better off we all are. 20% of our sales go to operate the gallery. though of course i like to sell my work, i am happy with any sales that contribute to our overhead. i don't love every member's work, but someone does- we're all juried in. people who don't sell don't usually find paying the rent every month to be worth it.

there is petty crap that goes on, people not being very nice to each other, tearing down rather than building up, that kind of thing. it happens in all sorts of groups, it just surprises me when it happens with artists. we're not competing to sell hundred thousand dollar paintings here. we're not competing for first prize in a big competition or juried show. we are supposed to be a community. and the stronger we are as a community the stronger we are individually.

thinking about this today because zella and i are organizing an emerging artist show at the gallery to encourage people to put their art out there. we're going to hold workshops on how to enter juried shows & how to present art once it's been selected. hopefully we can encourage some people to take a chance. also because my friend dave & i were talking today & he & i seem to come to this topic regularly. we both organize art events & charge minimal entry & take no commission. we're both sort of amazed at the competitive, unfriendly approach that rears its head sometimes. and i don't think either of us has much patience for bs.

anyway- this is a thank you to all of you who participate in my art- through my blog or in person. it's a reminder to myself of the sort of artist i want to be (because truth be told there are always those "how did that get in and mine didn't" moments), and a reminder not to be too hard on the folks who don't see it the same way- i can choose not to engage, after all.

have a great week-

Sunday, October 24, 2010

more autumn colors

and back to mixed media. maybe we'll see some prussian blue, ochre and cadmium red and yellow showing up.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

more reasons i love fall!

we had a nice hike this morning up into early snowfall

it's been so long since i've been in the mountains that i was afraid that i'd missed all of the aspen, but luckily i was wrong. we found beautiful perfect glowing quaking aspen today. the overcast emphasized the golden color of the leaves. i love aspen trees. they are home to me. i'm always pleased to greet my friends, especially when they show off in the fall.

leaves like gold coins in the stream

and on the ground

willow leaves like confetti

dead trees looking like wings

the promise of a new season's growth

the road goes on forever

so happy to get out in the mountains with the camera and enjoy and share such beauty. i'm so inspired- be fun to see what comes next

Friday, October 22, 2010

better photos

here are better shots of these 2 pieces:

it's hard to capture the depth of this one- the use of interference adds a mysterious reflective quality that you can only really see in person-

this is a much better representation of the color in this, though there are more variations than are visible here.

here's how my day was yesterday- which is why i'm posting this morning. maybe it's the full moon. whatever it is- i surrender,which will hopefully result in peace :)

have a great weekend all!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

one down.....

artificial intelligence, 6x6 mixed media

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

art night

another lovely tuesday evening with nancy & pam & a bonus visit from margie who doesn't make art but is great company.

i had lots of stuff in between stages, so i worked on lots of pieces.


got a layer of what was meant to be a cerulean glaze with just a touch of pearl, but i was too heavy handed with the pearl, so i used a paper towel to create texture dabbing some off and then sanded and used alcohol to remove more. this is the transfer that i intend to use. i may try to scrape back a bit more, but it's getting there. i like the red showing thru and the movement in the sky.


became this. it's close- will have to look at it for a while. maybe a unifying wash but i don't know what color. maybe it's ok with a few touches of red in some spots. i do know i need to look for more old patterns, tho- love the dress!


became this with the addition of fluid bronze & fluid turquoise on the modeling & crackle pastes. i moistened the paste first & the color sucked right in. added a layer of gloss medium. i have explicit instructions from pam not to mess with this too much. :) will get a better color shot tomorrow, but it's a nice prussian blue, which is one of my favorites.

this (which i was really struggling with)

became this- with the addition of some tissue (if anyone has tissue from teva shoes please send it to me! i'm running out & love it) & the lighter paint circles. it's better, but i'm still not sure where it's going.

and then there's this, which was born tonight from extra paint & (i think) looks pretty good.

i sold 2 pieces at the gallery today- yay! 2 more small ones- a 6x6 and a 7x5. as much as people don't like to deal with hanging the smaller pieces that's what i've been successful with, so i'm going to keep making them. the bird & the 2 dresses are 6x6, the other 2 are larger. and that's it- off to bed- and hopefully more art tomorrow.

Monday, October 18, 2010

and back to mixed media

back to some things i started open studios weekend- this started with a super heavy gesso which i made squiggly texture lines in and dropped left over paint, glazes & bubble wrap stamping on. prussian blue is one of my favorite colors, even tho it's kind of a tough background.

added light molding paste & crackle past in the lower left cornerand stamped some circles on. circles seem to be showing up all over. i decided to use the stencil & push light modeling paste thru-

and here it is- now to figure out what sort of glaze or paint washes to add once the pastes have dried. they'll be absorbant & i should be able to get some interesting effects.

this got this far along & no farther. i like the different layers of glazes and the idea of the circles, but am stymied as to next steps. it's been hanging in my office and not giving me any answers. i added an interference red glaze over the orange parts today. maybe some light colored shapes? arrows? more circles?

then these 2 backgrounds- algebra homework found in the gutter (doing my part to keep the streets clean:)) and other paper scraps

and a very busy paint pattern that i need to tone down somehow before i can do anything with this. i had a transfer in mind, but it will be fighting with what's here unless i do something. or change directions completely.

that's it- painting tomorrow night with pam & nancy as long as i don't get sick- feeling hopeful i'll be back to my normal self tomorrow. hasta-