Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Lots of Starts and a great weekend

This one is ready to go to the gallery.  I have a few more started, the monotype part is done; next I add collage.


I got these done today and not being one to waste paint or ink, I cleaned up the plate with paper to add to my collage stash.
Yesterday was productive too.  I don't know if these are done or not, I have to live with them for awhile before I decide.

And the weekend.... I come from a very small family, two sisters are the only one's who had children. I have 4 cousins and they all got together near me this weekend along with some of their children. Here is the gang... and this is only part of their side of the family plus me.
And here I am with cousins and their spouses. I'm in white with the white hair the other two sitting on my left are the other two elders; behind them in hot pink and in grey are their younger siblings.  We don't see each other often as no one lives close but when we were growing up we did everything together since we only lived a block apart.... that and our mothers were very close.


It was fun seeing everyone, celebrating a graduation from UofM Law School, an engagement and a retirement.  Lots of reminiscing, lots of laughing.  We're getting to an age where we need to do it again every year.



Saturday, April 29, 2017

Inspired


Inspired is the exhibit opening at the Gallery Uptown, Friday, May 5. I'm part of the exhibit and thinking about what inspires me. So many things... other artists, old boats, textured walls, sidewalk cracks, colorful gardens, old structures, garden statuary, other art, even by things I’m working on at any given moment.

There are so many things that inspire me that it is difficult to zero in on one.  Different inspirations mean I produce different works. 

For this exhibit it’s a combination of techniques I've learned from other artists, texture, sidewalk cracks and a challenge from yet another artist.

When using acrylics I frequently pick up some of the paint on a piece of drawing paper.  At the end of a session I also pick up paint that’s left on my palette on drawing paper.  That paper I use for collage or to make into sketchbooks.  I used some of those sketchbooks for a few challenges a couple years ago and while I was working on the series of sidewalk cracks a friend remembered the challenges and wanted to see the sketchbooks so I got them out.
For the sidewalk cracks I start by putting down several colors of acrylic, some colors over another.  Looking at my sketchbook it occurred to me that I could use a better quality paper to pick up that paint and do a realistic drawing or painting on that paper.  That has started a whole new series.

As for the sidewalk cracks, watching another artist cover a piece covered in red with a couple coats of white and then scratching shapes with an exacto knife produced an interesting look.  For years I have collected photos of sidewalk cracks and the idea of scratching through a layer of paint to get the color underneath made me think of them, and thanks to a niece who gave me her hygienists tools, I had something to do some serious scratching with.  That and Leonard Cohen’s “There’s a crack in everything, it’s how the light gets in.”


Monday, April 24, 2017

Sidewalk Crack Series


I have collected photos of sidewalk cracks for a very long time.  Finally, for an exhibit opening at the Gallery Uptown in May, I'm doing some paintings based on those cracks.  I don't know if this will get in or not, he's not finished yet but yes, it is a sidewalk, repaired but a crack.  I've walked over this crack every school day since September, 2015. Here's the sidewalk
The opening reception is Friday, May 5, 5:30 - 8:00.  Here are a couple more of the cracks that I know will be in the exhibit...

There will also be a bit of whimsical realism.... like these guys....

I've got to get mounting, matting and framing done so I can't talk right now; however, once all is ready to deliver I'll be able to explain how all of these pieces are related.... there is a connection.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Tuesday Painters Today

We were at the library today.  I thought about painting the shelves of books but chatting with the group took up too much time, settled on another of the many plants that are there.

Last week we were at Church of the Dunes looking out its library window.... We get a similar view in the sanctuary so if the sermon is boring... well it isn't often but if it is....
 Yesterday I came across a sketchbook that I had started last year.  Some of the pages had been taped so I could do something small.  I haven't added paint yet but once I started on the tulips they grew... this is my birthday flowers so I will add color.  And the apple.... got it out for my grandson but decided I liked the crooked stem so kept it to draw and gave him a different one.
The reason I found above sketchbook.  I am doing some serious de-cluttering and reorganizing a very messy studio.  I have way too much stuff in there and some of it has to go.  I've found all sorts of treasures along with lots to get rid of.  This corner is partially done... still a ways to go but it's getting there.


Friday, March 10, 2017

More Pears and Clearing Clutter

 This is the last one I did.  Shopping at Meijer, saw the lumpy pear and had to get it.  The next one is the first day I brought it home.
 Day 2....
 And day 3
The Tuesday Pear was done with my Tuesday Painters.Group.  We were here that day doing still life paintings because it was wet and cold.  The rest were all quick sketches so I could get back into the studio to do more clutter clearing.  Since I'm digging out stuff, sorting and getting rid of things I haven't used in years there is more mess now than there was before I started.  

And, since I need to get more bookmarks done for an order, you can see them in process among the clutter They're circled in black.  Those one the left are ready to pull.  The ones on the right are mounted, ready to cut apart when I get the cutting mat cleared.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Having Fun With My Gelli Plate

I started some pieces for my crack series using my gelli plate.  When it was time to clean the plate I decided I really don't need more collage paper so let's use mailing tape.  I had three gelli plates going so time for a bit of experimenting.  I added a bit more paint, used a stamp to let the previous colors come through, let that dry, did some stamping, let them dry again, pulled the print and these bookmarks are the result.  Original monotype bookmarks ready to use..

I think I'll take them to the gallery tonight.  I have more that are drying now, just need to cut them out

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Trying Some Freeform Crochet... And A Bit Of Mixed Media work

I learned basic crochet from my grandmother, embroidery too, but didn't really take to either of them as a child.  I preferred knitting and needlepoint.  Many years later when my aunt and I had a Knit shop we both taught knitting, she taught crochet.  I still wasn't to taken with it though I did have her give me some lessons so I could help customers who had a problem.

A few years ago I saw a piece of freeform crochet and thought that was something I would like to do, definately not my grandmother's crocheting.  However, I didn't do anything about it since my skill was limited. I could do your basic single, double, triple and make a granny square.  In fact I have a lovely ruana that I made back when we had the shop and I still love it.  I've also made a couple granny square lap robes and given them away.  

Recently I saw a class on the internet.... Freeform Crochet.  Guess it was time to learn  I was suppose to get all the same yarn in 5 or 6 colors.  I think I once posted about giving up sewing but still buying fabric.  Well I still have a stash of yarn too even though I no longer knit anything more than a scarf. So I'm using what I have and already knowing I like doing this and I have some ideas for other things.  What we are suppose to be working toward now is a purse.  I've also discovered that crocheting doesn't cause my hand to go numb as knitting did.  The numbness is the reason I quit knitting.  The pieces I've done so far aren't blocked because I still plan to add more color and stitches to some of them. 

A plus to taking up something new... again. This time I really don't have to go out and buy all of the equipment.  I already have most of what I need.

I've also been doing a bit more in my studio.  In the process of clearning piles I came across some monoprints that were waiting for me to go in with the collage elements.  This one is a start.  I don't like the dark blue and I think I'd like more green, partly in the bush on the left.

 Photoshop lets me play a bit and see what would happen if I lighten and add... here is that version

Now I need to see if I can do it on the actual piece.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Some Things Revisited


It's no secret I've been clearing some clutter from my studio and unearthing things I had forgotten.  I did this in 2014.  I have a sketchbook almost full of these images called Zendangles.  Something similar to Zentangle but to me, much more fun

One of the Dangles in the sketchbook was a start, not much to it.  So I decided to add more.  I haven't done any color yet, maybe later today or tonight.  Last night I taught my class the basics, they had a good time with it and some of them will probably do more.  It's addictive.

The other thing I did yesterday was pick up the sampler my mother started.  I should have blocked it myself before having it framed because they didn't get it straight.  She would not like that which is the only reason I think it should be straight.  For now it will hang in my sewing room, above her machine.  It is a reminder to me that while there are many ways we are alike... note unfinished sketchbook above and unfinished sampler.... there are also many ways we are different and that's okay.

I inherited her talent (she was an artist) and her love of fiber and fashion though you wouldn't know that to see me now, jeans and sweatshirts are my go to wardrobe. She liked perfect seams and stitches, I don't like staying in the lines nor do I feel compelled to have straight seams.  If they are that's fine, if not that's okay too.  But for the things she liked to sew it was important... fashion, clothes, she was a fashion designer through and through.  I prefer sewing art quilts and other just plain fun things like wonky dolls and angels.


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Two Today

My Tuesday Painters group painted at our museum today, this set up was in the pioneer kitchen.  I love old crocks and wooden bowls.  This crock is a bit off, one side is curved, the other not.  Oh well, it's just a sketch.

Back home I went back to some experimenting with the acrylics... I did my daily drawing on a 7"x7" piece of watercolor paper and then did the painting in acrylics.  I've used acrylics for non-representational work but never to do  something real so I'm considering this another experiment... for me anyway.
I kind of like it, think I may try more. This is from my Valentine's tulips, tomorrow they will be more open so I'll try again.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Last Time For The Pear

It will be poached for dessert tonight.  This one was done with one of my XL Graphite sticks.  You can't really see the color but it's a deep burgundy.  The box of sticks is new and this is one I hadn't used, it looked like a dark grey, almost black as I was drawing.  I was surprised when I added the water and saw the rich burgundy

I'll have to find another something to draw from different angles, it was a fun challenge.  Nothing more done on the WIPs,  I will get back to them later today.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

One WIP Is A Mess But I Love The Ginger Jar, Pears Too

My daily yesterday, a ginger jar done with gel pens.  I do like these things, one of these days I'm going to buy one.  

Today it was that pear again, from the top
And from the bottom/  Both done with the Derwent XL Graphite.
I'm happy with the dailies; the WIP not so much.  I used alcohol to rub back a bit and went back further than I had planned.  I have no idea where this is going to end up, Right now it resembles a road map.  I didn't do anything with it today, just thinking about it.  Maybe tomorrow...

Friday, February 10, 2017

Wondering & Another Pear

A third layer, well it's really taking off rather than putting on but it's the third bite at the apple so to speak.  I kind of like this and the one below so I'm going to have to live with them awhile to see where to go next if at all.

 Meanwhile, I really need to do a lot more work on this one.  I did get rid of the spot dead center, now I have a different something there.   This one is a long way from done.
 And ... another pear.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Progress and A Pear

First the pear, done in my sketchbook using  Derwent XL graphite sticks.  A quick one to start the day.

Yesterday I made some progress on one of the starts. Here are all of the stages so far....

Step one, just putting down color and collage elements.  Center top is gold from a piece of Joss Paper.
 Next, three coats of white covers everything, well almost covers.  I can still see the Joss Paper.
Next step is to spray with a bit of alcohol and scrap with a single edge razor and scratch with an exacto knife.  The gold on the Joss Paper is gone.  Now I know that doesn't work.
 The next step is a coat of Quinacrodone Gold, one of my new favorite colors, The white is from my camera, it is the same light gold as everywhere else.
 Once that was dry I added black and rubbed it off.  I like the combination of black and gold.
.Last step yesterday was to add a bit of Cerulean blue and then rub it away.  Some of the black came away with it and now I have a spot dead center.... a problem to solve.  That will be my task today.
And maybe another version of the pear in the morning...