This evening I emailed my sketchbook class encouraging them to get their sketchbooks out in the rain and experiment with what would happen if they tinted a page with some graphite and let a few rain drops fall. This was just a whim of an idea, nothing I had ever tried myself….. so i tried it!
Here’s the tinted page indoors…
some rain drops, but not much is happening… the graphite is acting a bit like a resist. Maybe I should have known this from art school? Oh well, back indoors….
I add some Golden Absorbent Ground (a magical medium that makes cool things happen) to the right side of the page along with a few streaks of watercolor and go back out into the rain. It’s beginning to get dark out but I like what happens….
Here is the book indoors.
Here… is what a raindrop is capable of given the right opportunity on the page. I am inspired by this because it reminds me of what attracts me most to the medium of encaustic.
Below are a few new-ish pieces of work that have recently come off the wax table. Any feedback or comments are always welcome. I continue to be in experimentation mode with this medium….
I have been thinking a bunch lately about rivers, hearts and veins.
Meanwhile there is a lot happening in the sketchbook world… Drawing Down the Vision is near ready for launch and I am putting together a travel sketching workshop to my beloved soul home, Taos, NM which will happen in the spring if there is enough interest in it. I am inspired by my new students at the Art Academy as I get to know them. Teaching is one of my greatest sources of creativity.
Wishing you fun in the rain…. as always, I will keep you posted as things progress.
In spite of all of the dog walks, running around to music lessons and summer day camps, I am getting some work done in the studio on the little squares project. Here are the results…
In June there was a conference in Massachusetts all about making art with encaustic. I discovered it too late to go this year, but I already plan to go next year. In the meantime, I ordered the new book by Linda Womack called Embracing Encaustic which was released at the conference. It is beautiful and informative and I am thrilled to dig in and try all of the techniques described in this new book.
Last night the kids and I attended the Cincinnati Area Puppetry Guild meeting which was held at the headquarters of Madcap Puppets. We were treated to a tour of the facilities and even got to play with and manipulate some of the incredible creations Madcap is famous for. In the photo above (taken on my cell phone, hence the quality), the “Hunchback” character is actually my daughter Maddie wearing a backpack puppet. She is showing signs of being a good puppeteer…
Also in that picture (next to Maddie holding the fish) is Kevin Frisch, the fearless leader/president of the Puppetry Guild. Kevin brought with him a handsome new marionette he just made for a car dealership commercial. This little guy can raise his eyebrows, move his eyes, sit down and cross his legs. He’s amazing! We were all enchanted, as usual, with Kevin’s latest creation.
Recently Kevin has been working on a new and improved website for his Frisch Marionette Company. It’s a whole virtual world just waiting for exploration. Check it out!
After the guild meeting, I came home and stoked the fire in the studio and got to work with some wax. I LOVE to work at night and find it is when I am most creative and loose and playful with materials. The tough part about this night owl tendency is that I have my “real life” commitments as mom and worker to which I have to attend the next morning. I am a little sleepy today to say the least. But it’s worth it, I think. I am continuing to play with my new materials and exploring ways to make different things happen. Today I will just drink a lot of coffee and maybe fit in a 20 minute power nap…. so I can stay up late again tonight!!
I embedded a mirror in the one above which is more successful in person than in this photograph. The mirror is so small that the viewer only sees a small portion of themselves when looking at the painting. In the other two works I used some fish vertebrae (above) and some small knotted bits of thread (below). There is a suture-like quality to this which I think plays well with the skin-ness of the wax. This will bear more experimentation…
Yesterday a really cool video was sent to me by my friend Amy in Maine. This just goes to show that not a lot of money needs to go into a powerful bit of art work. Another wonderful video shown to us at the puppetry guild meeting is that of the work of Gaia Teatro out of Peru. With minimal props and merely the sensual use of their hands, these puppeteers create evocative characters that are simply magical. These are some things I am finding inspiring these days.
With the encaustic “cakes” all set to go from my efforts this past weekend, I was ready to hit the studio today and try adding some pigment to the wax/resin concoction and see what I could come up with. For lack of a better, more professional artist sort of word, it was just plain FUN! I know already that I need to get away from the palette that I have started with; it still looks fairly out-of-the-box. But I am trying not to be too hard on myself. I made a little painting which measures about 5″ square (sort of). I put a hiding fish in it. I just played.
So here is my first go. I took a few photos with different lighting. Here are two. I am not sure which does the little painting more justice…