Mixed Media Art. Photography. Inspiration.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

New Painting : The Chemistry of Copper

So what happens when I get into my studio regularly?

1.  I'm way happier, calmer, and happier (yes, I know)
2.  The house stays a mess
3.  I don't care about the mess
and most importantly...

We need more of my art in our house, so I decided to do a painting for our den.  I grabbed this 12 x 36 inch canvas and went to town!  

I wish the photos would show the colors better.  It's mostly this gorgeous grey/green with copper and verdigris blue accents.  It has a soft metallic luster that's not too shimmery... it's just right.  And of course it has... what?.... LOTS of texture!

So just for fun... because I love seeing other artist's processes... here are photos I took with my phone during the process.

Just ignore my feet ;-)

I started by gluing a bunch of papers down.  The main paper I used is from a vintage CHEMISTRY book. 
 I don't remember what my original plan was, but I thought the paper would still show through.  Hmmm... maybe next time.

I added layers of paint and stamping and liked it, but I started covering it anyway... that's just how I roll ;-)

I recently found a bunch of my old faux finish products hiding out in our garage and decided to start using them before they go bad.  They are BEAUTIFUL (and expensive) products by a company called Faux Effects.  I started by troweling their product Lusterstone (the light color in the photo above) through a stencil, then onto the rest of the canvas.  

Then I started adding a darker color (made by mixing Metallic Silver Palette Deco with a few darker colors to make this gorgeous metallic grey/green), and troweled it through a honeycomb stencil.  I then troweled more of this mix onto the rest of the canvas.  I dipped a wet rag into this mix and rubbed a thin coat of it over the whole canvas to tone down the contrast (below).  I also added touches of a verdigris blue color.

The final touch was adding the copper stenciling (Lusterstone mixed with copper).
Voila!  A great art piece for our den made with products I had just laying around. 

While I was working on this I started another small canvas using these products... and guess what?  When it's done I'm going to have a lil' giveaway.  Just sayin ;-)
So stick around!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Shadow Shot and a Fab Necklace

Well hello there.

Time for another shadow shot.  This is a photo of one of our sunflowers before my hubby harvested the seeds.  I think it's a pretty darn cool thing that sunflower seeds come out of a ...umm.... flower... but not just any flower... a pretty flower.  Maybe that's where they got the inventive name, huh?  Sunflower seeds.  Yeah, not enough coffee in my system today.   So moving on...

To join in the Shadow Shot Sunday fun, go here.

What's this beauty you ask? 

 It's a fantastic necklace I won from Fanciful Devices.  Oh man, she makes the most incredible jewelry.  I can't believe I was lucky enough to win this!  I love everything about it, including the double-sided pendant.  You have to see all the pretties that this woman cranks out... amazing!!  Oh, and it was wrapped all pretty-like too.  I loved it so much that I wore it that night to dinner... and we stayed home!!

Oh, by the way, the cool background that the necklace is sitting on (no not me, the other one!) is my latest painting.  It needs a few more lil' touches then I'll share it with you.  

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Finished Painting : The Healing Tree

Hi there.

I'd like to share my latest mixed media painting, "The Healing Tree", with you. It's my new favorite.  I've been working on this on and off for the last 6-7 months... not straight through (thank goodness).  It's driven me crazy and caused many labor pains to be born into this world, but it was well worth it.  

It had quite an interesting start...as it didn't start off as a tree at all... but a peacock feather!  This was the first stage below.

A nice start I thought... loose and free, but then something went horribly wrong and it evolved to this below.  I had something in mind, but now I can't remember what.  OK, it's not THAT bad really, and I really like the depth and texture that was added by the torn papers and stamping...you can click on the photo to see it better.

So after that I put it aside and let it stew for a bit.

Then one day I suddenly wanted to paint a tree.  NOW!  I looked around, saw this canvas and thought "Nope.  Not feather..... TREE."  (what am I, a caveman?  no sentence.  just word)  Umm...yeah...

So I painted over the whole thing, drew a tree with orange water-color crayon, grabbed some aqua paint and a spiral suddenly appeared.  Hmm... ok... I like it.

Then I started on the tree and tore some vintage book pages into leaf shapes.  I created even more leaves with cream paint and others with green.

Then there was a lot more painting, glazing, and layering to create more depth, vitality, and luminosity.  I also used a few water-color crayons to give it some "pop" and bring out some details.  Don't forget to use a spray sealer after using these crayons, or it'll easily wash away.

One of the final details was adding the rain.

Sometimes when I create a painting, it's just to have fun and make something pretty.  Other times I have a deeper meaning in mind (and heart) before starting.  And sometimes it starts as the first one, but then evolves to become something much more significant.  This is definitely the last one.  It started becoming more meaningful when I painted the spiral and just kept growing from there.  It's not something I can completely explain or even understand, but as I was working on it, I could feel it.  I could feel that this painting is about more than just a simple tree, that there is a deeper, spiritual meaning to it.  The title "The Healing Tree" came to me when it was almost finished.  It is obviously a huge part of it the message, but there's more to it than that.

It's in the details...

 The spiral.
The branches.
The white leaves.
The rain.
The falling leaf.
The tree itself.
Maybe even the book pages.

The meaning isn't always revealed to me as I'm working on it.  At times it can take a while after I've finished it for it to come.   I've yet to completely grasp this one.  I've had some whispers, but not the whole message.

Whatever it's full meaning is, it speaks to me.  I'm going to hang on to this one.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Tree Tunnel Shadow Shots and a Painting Peek

Hi there!

Yesterday was a good day!!  I painted more!!  Yay!!  It feels SO good to finally be getting back into my studio regularly.   The house is a mess, but eh...who cares?!! (sorry honey).  And I may have finally finished a painting that's been eluding me for quite a while.  It just wouldn't tell me how it wanted to be finished, but yesterday I was determined to GET IT DONE!!  I got into that lovely flow and had the best time working on it.

More of that later, let's get to those cool shadows.
These were taken on the way up to a client's house in Crystal Cove (the one I painted the furniture for this summer shown here and here).  I love how the trees formed a beautiful, leafy tunnel to drive under.  Pretty, yes?

Check out more shadow shots or join in the fun by heading over to Hey Harriet's for Shadow Shot Sunday HERE.

Ok, back to the painting...I still need to take photos of the piece I finished (well, it still may need a few more finishing touches first), so you'll have to wait a few days, but to hold you over here's a lil peek.  I'm so darn excited about it, I can't wait to share it with you!

Until then...

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Painting Freely

Hi there!

I'm so excited!  I got to paint some more after my last post!!  Yahoo!!
I soooo needed to get back into my studio and get paint on my hands.  I was on the computer for a while that day and kept coming across artists whose work was deliciously sloppy and free.  I was so inspired (and a bit jealous).  I wanted to do that too. 

in progress

 Finally I went into my studio and grabbed a canvas that I had painted black for another project years ago.  I grabbed 3 paints, squeezed one onto the canvas and used my hands to smear it around, then did the same with the other 2 colors.  Then I grabbed white paint and used it to draw a branch with my fingers.  
Yes, I finger painted!!

 That was the only way for me to completely connect with, and release, everything that had built up in me from not painting... I had to really go for it, let go of perfectionism, and let loose!

I had to be free!

And boy was it exactly what I needed.  I had a blast!  I smeared, smooshed, splashed and literally threw paint around.   

 I used the end of a paint brush to draw into the wet paint (that was the only time I used a brush on this!) When it dried I used vine charcoal to loosely draw the branch and write "be free" then sprayed it with a sealer.

Ahh... much better now.

So what about you?  What do you really want to be doing right now?  Then why are you on the computer?  Turn it off and go get your hands dirty!!  Paint, write, whatever... just let loose, have fun, and be free!!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Shadow Shot Sunday : Pretty Column

Hi there.

I'm still getting caught up from the past few hectic weeks, so I had to dig in my stash for an old shadow shot.  I love this column (why is that word spelled so funny?).  This is part of a church in Pasadena that I showed more photos of here and here.

If you want to join in with your own shadow shots, go to Hey Harriet and tell her hey from me!

And thank you VERY much for all you sweetness and love on the last post.  It means a lot to us... seriously (my husband read and appreciated your comments too).

Sorry it's taking me a long time to get back to you all, but I will visit everyone who comments.. even if it takes me a while.

 Oh, and I snuck into my studio today and painted, YAY!!  It was only for about 15 minutes, but that's better than nothing, and now a painting that's been almost finished for quite a while is 15 minutes closer to finally being finished!