Ten things you need to know about my art.

I’ve been back in the studio again working on a new series.  Here are ten things you need to know about my art:

  1.  There’s ALWAYS Naples Yellow on my pallet – it’s like sunshine.
  2.  I generally use Burnt Umber instead of black.
  3.  My pallet is a tiny bar cutting mat that I bought at the dollar store.  It scrapes down easily when I don’t wash it right away and my ultra thinned acrylics just don’t stick to it.
  4.  There’s usually a layer of shimmer somewhere on my paintings.
  5.  I use watercolor pencils, inks, gel medium, and clear gesso between layers.
  6.  Every painting I do has a minimum of 6 layers.
  7.  I sign my paintings before I finish them.
  8.  I glaze like a maniac – rarely is there one layer of pure pigment on my canvas.
  9.  I sometimes draw my birds on paper with Prismacolor Pencils then layer them on   the canvas with gel medium.
  10.  I create “studio cards” when I work.  It uses the extra paint on my pallet and lets  me try new ideas with no “commitment issues”.
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    The beginnings of a cactus flower painting alongside a “studio card”

    20180325_122244.jpg Here’s another shot of the same card, with a few more layers.  I send these out to random people I know.

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The Romance Collection

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This is a new series of small artworks that I have made on repurposed VCR tapes.  All began with a poured acrylic painting, embellished with flowers, decorative papers, and other small items to give them sparkle and dimension.  They were all sealed with a coat of crystal resin to add depth.

I chose a romantic theme for this series – flowers and little objects that remind me of romantic events.  There’s a bit of sparkle and I think all of them are quite elegant.

I like the size of the work because they fit into almost any space – and they can conceal small mementos inside.  I really dream of living in a tiny house, so I’m inspired by the thought of giving my art a dual purpose – not only does it look lovely hanging on a wall, but the interior of the box can hold little things that are important to the owner.  I love that idea – it’s minimalism with a sentimental twist.

All of my small cases are available in my Etsy shop.

Dimensions

I like to build my elements for my small works – it’s a great way to keep creative without feeling like I’ve made a large “time commitment”.  While I was watching television one night, I “built” the golden dragonfly above.  The wings were made by using Pebeo Moon paint and Cerne Relief to give them texture.  I layered large acrylic gems over the paint, placing each gem with a pair of jewelry tweezers.  I outlined a body with the Cerne Relief and used Recollections micro beads to fill in lower part and larger Recollections golden gems to give the upper body some dimension.

The dragonfly is sitting atop a fantastic swirled base, created with layers of Pebeo paints, resin, and glitter poured over an acrylic pour.  Then, I embellished the whole piece with various gems and a blue flower.  The entire piece was covered with resin to give it shine – nothing brings depth to a piece like a glossy coat of resin!

Blue Flower with Dragonfly

Using multiple techniques – Mixed Media Collage

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This is from a new collection that I’ve been working on.  These are not digital images, but rather mixed media collage pieces, all centered around a nature theme.  In the above shot, you can see the embellishments I added to the surface – including a paper butterfly that was inspired by a Lalique pin I saw.

All in all, there are at least 7 techniques used above – probably more, but after 7 it’s really a moot point.  These new collages have texture and are all finished with a clear coat of resin to give the surface some depth.  So I thought for a while I’d post about these little gems.

On the main substrate of the piece.

I used acrylic paint and Liquitex pouring medium to achieve the cream and white color of the base.  Next, I layered Liquitex gel medium over it using a stencil (this one is from Tim Holtz), then used Pebeo Vitrail in sand and white to flood over the dried stencil to get the deeper areas.  The Vitrail lightening medium is so easy to use over a textured piece.  It carries the color right into the recesses and by flooding the piece with a mixture of Vitrail paints thinned with lightening medium I can get a soft finish with nice color transitions.  My next step was to drop on some Pebeo Moon paint…but more on that later.

Then I went to work on a cardstock butterfly.  I layered Pebeo Moon and Fantasy paints over the surface (in pearl and gold) and let the effects mix together.  I love the way they swirl and change and give an enameled look to a piece.  Then came some embellishments (Recollections glitter and little bling gems) all held on with some glossy mod-podge.  You never want to use the matte mod-podge over a glitter – it takes away the sparkle.  I also let some white Vitrail flow over some little flowers I molded with PaperClay and a small mold I bought years ago.  These little flowers then got a gem glued to the center and the edges brushed with PearlEx powders.  That really added a little extra sparkle!

In the 1st photo, you can see some faint butterflies with glittery bodies.  Those were a photo-transfer using scrapbook paper and gloss gel.  Once the gel dries, you can soak it in water and rub off the paper – leaving a transparent “skin” with the image on it.  It’s great fun to do while watching TV.  I then assembled all of the elements – including some little gears and a big sparkly Bead Landing flower that came from my stash of jewelry supplies and then a coat of clear Gedeo resin – Voila!  A mixed media collage that took HOURS but was so entertaining to do.