I will be participating in another online painting class for 2015! The Acrylic Painting Club is modeled after Art Play Date and has a few of the same teachers as well as some new favorites - come join us for lots of fun & learning!! I will be teaching stroke rose construction and will have color variations on different background colors as well.
Halloween is one of my absolute favorite times of the year! When it is time to pull out all the witches, pumpkins & other decorations I get a bit giddy around the edges. Some of my decorations date back to my first months of decorative painting. One pumpkin was the third thing I painted as I was learning. There is always a bit of editing from year to year and I try to change the position of some things. This year I added some darling hand made white pumpkins from Dawn Edmonson. They have fat little bodies with real pumpkin stems and will fit in with the Thanksgiving decorations as well. Dawn's package was a real surprise when it arrived. The entire box was filled with old tissue patterns as packing material for the pumpkins! To a mixed media artist, this stuff is like gold!! I was so excited when I first opened the box and saw all the tissue, I almost forgot about the pumpkins.
I had the great good fortune to paint with Mary Jo Leisure in Atlanta back in April! It was the first time I was able to get into one of her classes and I jumped at the chance to watch her in action!! Mary Jo is known for her incredibly beautiful paintings and her roses are magical. I must say, I didn't get a lot of painting done that weekend. What I did was watch what she was doing and listening as hard as I could. Watching and having the chance to talk with her and ask questions really helped me understand the structure of her roses. I still need more practice but am really happy with my results so far. I love painting stroke roses and hers are definitely a challenge - and in oils no less.
YAY!! The kiln gods were merciful and my test piece came out better than I hoped for! Best of all - my screens worked with the new product the way I was hoping. There will be a bit more testing to go. I am working on getting a mixed media/layering look on glass and this new product is promising. Will keep working and experimenting. Check back soon!
There are lots of new pieces started! Some I can show off and others are for upcoming deadlines. Here is one piece I can show off since I am really playing and testing some new product. And I wanted a chance to combine this new product with my screens to see what would happen. This is a combination of fired glass color, MUD and a top secret product - all from Unique Glass Colors. Here is a bit of snippet for what is to come. All of the layers are currently drying overnight and it will go into the kiln in the morning. Stay tuned and cross your fingers that the kiln gods look favorably on me!
Haven't posted in awhile - been working on my very first online video class and some supporting video tutorial work. This was my first time creating a video but it certainly won't be the last! I have lots of paint/mixed media/fabric ideas that I want to share so please check back from time to time to see what is new. The idea I am most excited about right now is the line of screens I have created to go along with the videos. The first screens are available in my ETSY store over in the right hand side bar and there are more coming soon. While I do love stencils, the possibilities of working with screen prints are endless. Not only do the screens work with regular acrylic/print inks, but I have been using them in my silk dyeing and with MUD from Unique Glass Colors. There will be a tutorial for how I combine MUD with the screens shortly. Lots to do before my ART PLAY DATE class starts tomorrow! See you there!!!
Art Play Date starts in about 3-1/2 weeks! The projects are up on the website and they are all wonderful - we are going to have such a great time!!! Here is my project that will be available at the end of July. Along with the iris painting in acrylic, there will be a variety of mixed media techniques to choose from. You will be able to pick the ones you want to include in your painting to make it your own unique work of art! For more information and to sign up, just click the Art Play Date box to the right and that will take you to my link. See you there!!
Did the happy dance just a bit too soon! I thought I was home free on the firing disaster for the first tile. It took awhile but there is a thin crack running in a slow arc. It started at the bottom and went half way in. I looked at it again today and the crack is across the full tile. It appears to only be on the underneath portion of glass (two pieces are sandwiched together). Let's hope it stays that way! It is fully and firmly mounted and grouted in place! Oy, the unpredictability of glass is both frustrating and captivating at the same time. Always a learning experience!
Rebuilding the house after the fire took as long as building it in the first place! During the process, we made all sorts of little changes here and there. When I redesigned the kitchen, I decided to have a tile backsplash. And I moved the microwave to a different location so I could have a proper range hood. That left a really big available space above the stove for something special. I found some really interesting border tiles and fashioned a "frame" on the wall above the stove. That is where my tile guy started. He left the inside of this frame empty for artwork to be determined at a later date. And since my BFF Margot owns a company that manufactures fired glass color, I figured there would be some way to make something for that space. Now - we moved back into the house at the end of February - TWO years ago. I have been staring at that empty hole for two years people!! Several freeform attempts to make something for that frame failed miserably and I would go back to thinking about it. And you can't put just anything there! It has to match the kitchen aesthetic and is kind of permanent. At the least, it would be decidedly difficult and laborious to remove. And I wanted it to be my own design!! But what?? Then my daughter asked me to host a baby shower for her so she could invite her friends and family here. Nothing like planning a party to get the rear in gear! Finally, I came up with a design I thought would work and fit the style of the kitchen. The design would have to fit into two tiles as my kiln wasn't big enough for one complete piece. Not a problem - I will just do two firings. The glass I used came from a broken painting hanging in the family room that fell during the fire? I already had a nice stack of glass cut to size from that one big piece. I worked for two days getting all the color applied to the design and it was finally ready for the kiln. Did I mention the baby shower is in 10 days? My kiln is a small fiber one that sits on a shelf when not in use. I place it on the garage floor (nice & level surface) and plug it in. I put the first piece in and start the kiln. Sometime later, I run to the market. Coming back, I open the garage to pull in and notice the kiln is off - but there is NO LIGHT telling me it is complete! I go inside and my son is running the vacuum for me - only the canister in the garage isn't working. We've either blown a fuse or tripped a GFCI! Evidently, we have had a trifecta of power overuse. The combination of vacuum/kiln/garage door is all on the same line! Who knew?? We finally found the GFCI that had tripped and restored power but I couldn't turn the kiln back on because I had no idea where it was in the firing schedule. Nothing for it but let it cool down and see what was what. This in itself wouldn't have been a major disaster but I had two pieces to fire and they had to match! Did I mention the shower is in 10 days? No time to start over on this! I called Margot and told her what was going on. She talked me through the possibilities and options and wished me luck! It wasn't until I could open the kiln later that night that I knew I had at least one good piece. The colors were good and the edges were the best I had ever achieved! But could I get the second piece to match? I started the second piece before I went to bed and crossed my fingers & toes. The next morning, I held my breath as I opened the lid and pulled out the matching piece! Did a happy dance right then & there!!! Cleaned up the second piece and laid the two together and my design was complete. Installation is finally over and I have a complete kitchen!
This is the first peek of my painting for Art Play Date! It is mixed media with stamping/embossing used in a couple of new ways and a really easy painting technique. Best part? No pattern transfer! How do I do that you ask? Come check out Art Play Date using the link to the right. You will not be disappointed! This is going to be fantastic arty fun!!!
I am so excited! Not only am I working on my first online art class, I get to participate with some pretty incredible artists!!! ART PLAY DATE will start in May and run through October. Each Monday, a new lesson will be released from another teacher for a total of 24 weeks. All for the very low price of $99!!! Each class will consist of a pre-recorded video and a coordinating PDF. More information is coming but I couldn't wait to share this exciting news!! If you want to sign up, just click the link in my right side bar. Come play with us!!
Packing that many big holidays into such a short time frame are draining, especially when Thanksgiving is so late in the month. It seems like the parties and preparations is nonstop! Once it was over I felt the need for a bit of a break. Lots of cleaning out and preparing for new art adventures has been going on. To kick off this bit of activity came my word choice for the year - ENERGY! I want to rev up my energy levels by creating lots of fun happy art and inspire others to do the same! It is fitting that I share my first finished art project of the year with such a vibrant jacket. Airbrushed silk dye with my custom silk screens in the "flower freedom" design applied with iridescent fabric paint. What do you think?