Saturday, April 24, 2010

My Fifteen Minutes of Fame

Exciting news to report! First, here is the CitraSolv brochure, hot off the press, advertising the use of their product in art. Look who made it onto the brochure: my Warhol collage! Woot! Woot!

And to make it even more exciting...guess who won the "collage" entry in the CitraSolv Artist Contest? Moi, for the same collage! Woot! Woot! Here is the announcement on their artist website. Today I received my prize in the mail: a very generous gift card from Cheap Joe's Art Supply! I think I'll be able to think of something to order... ;)

All of this has been such a welcome surprise these last couple of weeks. Lots of drama going on behind the scenes here but this more than makes up for it. Andy Warhol's classic line: "Everyone will be famous for 15 minutes" comes to mind. Well, here is my fifteen minutes and I think it only fitting that Mr. Warhol himself was the inspiration for this piece. And I also think Andy would get a kick out of it!

I have been working on some other projects but nothing that I can show just yet. I found this awesome book in Border's yesterday and couldn't resist getting it:
Oh, my! Lots of ideas and inspiration pouring out of this...stay tuned for some results to be posted soon.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Shattered Heart

I've been busy trying some new encaustic techniques and playing a bit more with watercolors. The first photo is my latest encaustic painting called, "Shattered Heart". I wanted to experiment with adding some glass to the wax. I had envisioned a piece with shattered glass and some screen wire.

This is close to what I had in my head when I started the painting. I also wanted to add more texture to my next piece. I like the deep scratches that I see in a lot of encaustic artists' work so I wanted to add more of those. If you click on the photo you get a larger view. I also used a wire brush for the pitted look you see in different areas. I then experimented with using a metal charm as a "stamp" in the wax. That is what you see in the four rectangles at the bottom of the painting. Once I had the scratches in and the "stamp" done, I then filled them in with oil paint.

The glass didn't want to stay in once I had finished the painting. The next day, I found the whole thing laying on the floor with the glass underneath it on the carpet! :( So I had to reinforce it with some E-6000. That stuff holds anything!

Then I did two more watercolor paintings for Monica's class. This first one was inspired by a photo I saw in an old photography book I got for free in the library discard bin. I loved the image of the little girl surrounded with the birds. I call this one, "For The Birds".

I have this rough, cream colored watercolor paper that I ordered by mistake and thought I would never use. I should have sent it back but I didn't want to bother with the hassle. I only have about five sheets of the stuff, so I figured I'd use it for a collage base, if nothing else. That's what I've been using for these watercolor paintings. It's nice that you start out with a little bit of color to the face (the cream paper).

This next one was inspired by a photo of a girl I saw in an old National Geographic magazine. I added different facial features, hair and background. I love the purple background. How I did it, I don't know! ;) I call this one, "Secrets" because after finishing the painting, she just looked like she had some secrets she was hiding.

I have a new appreciation for watercolor painters! I think it's a very challenging medium, but beautiful when you get the results you want. However, I think I'll stick to my other media: acrylics, oils and encaustic. But the experiments have been fun.

I saw a gorgeous encaustic painting from another artist in one of the online encaustic groups I belong to. She achieved the most beautiful effects using an iron. That's got me thinking...I have this little travel iron (never used) that is a perfect size for these canvasses...Stay tuned!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Heavenly Whispers

This is my finished painting. I wanted to have it completed by April 2. My Mom would have turned 70 on that day and I try to make one piece of art dedicated especially to her each year since she passed away. I can't believe it's been six years...still feels so recent.

This painting was yet another stretch for me in the watercolor medium. I used both watercolor paints and pencils for her. I like the blending that you can get with the pencils but I find the paints to still be a challenge. I wanted her to have a stylized look; not so much a "realistic" color to her face.

For finishing touches, I added some tulips from some decorative napkins and then used a palette knife to lay down a heavy layer of acrylic paint. Finally, I sprinkled on some mica flakes to give it an ethereal feel.

This painting is dedicated to my Mom who passed away much too early at the age of 64 on April 4, 2004. I love you, Mom, and this is how I feel everyday...wondering about how it must be for you in Heaven right now. :)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Work In Progress

I've been busy trying to learn how to use my watercolors. Let's just say I'm finding there's a huge learning curve. I have a couple of paintings going right now and I thought I'd show you a sneak peek at a work in progress. Watercolors are very cool when you can get them to do what you want. I'm just not there yet...

This is a painting on half a sheet of watercolor paper. It's for Monica Zuniga's Inspire Me Workshop. We were supposed to make a whimsical figure but I'm not quite there yet. I thought I'd do another lifelike (or at least at attempt at it) painting before tackling the next lesson.

One thing I'm sure of: as with any other medium, only with practice, practice, practice will you make any progress! So, that's just a peek at what's going on behind the scenes. I've also started another encaustic piece but am still waiting for inspiration on where to go with it next.

I hope to have some kind of finished piece to show soon!