Saturday, October 31, 2009

GPP Crusade No. 34

Collage of elements from my experiments on black paper.
When this Green Pepper Press challenge was announced, I was excited about the possibilities and wanted to explore ideas I have for working on black backgrounds. Earlier this summer I painted a design on black for my husband and have wanted to do more. But it's been a busy month with other priorities. I didn't know if I would get to follow through.
I decided to tear 8-1/2 x 11 sheets of black cardstock in half. Late in the evening I would spend a few minutes trying different media on the paper. It's the end of the month and I have a collection of papers to show for it. I plan to bind them into a journal.

I monoprinted and stamped white gesso on some pages. When dry, I experimented with adding color using opaque watercolor, water soluble oil pastel, and stamping. The gesso was very porous and the colors were very muted on it.

Opaque watercolor and soft pastels were worked directly on black paper with more dramatic results.

Metallic pigment markers were used on glossy black cardstock. I also used them to ink a rubber stamp which is the butterfly in the collage above. The shimmery quality of these images doesn't show up well in the photos.

I used masks and applied soft pastel to a page for dragonflies. I stamped with white chalk ink over hand-shaped masks. I scumbled white gesso around the hands to make them stand out against the page better.

These are among my favorites. I used heavy body acrylic paint - regular and metallic. Paint was applied with a brayer. The papers on the right and the left have been stamped as well. I used acrylic paint on the stamps.
I made notes with more ideas on another black page using a metallic gel pen. I bought black illustration board with the intention of cutting it into covers for the journal, but I cut pieces for new artworks instead. I have already started a new work on one of the pieces.
[I will NOT be pursuing art pieces on this black illo board because the top layer of paper began to delaminate when I put juicy washes of color on the gesso base coat.]
This was a great idea for a challenge. I learned a lot and now have a new set of inspirations to work from. I found that a few minutes spent on a consistent basis will turn into more than I could have imagined. Thanks Michelle!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Homeward Bound

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens;
Let Your glory be over all the earth.

This is the latest painting that I completed. It's been mostly done for a few weeks. I joined a critique group earlier this month and picked up a couple tips to improve the composition. After taking time to consider the ideas, I tweaked the painting a bit, added varnish coats and now it is ready to be installed in a black frame similar to the black border I added to the digital image you see here. The acrylic painting is on an 18" x 24" canvas panel.

The painting started out with a completely different idea in mind. I painted a mottled blue violet background on which I printed white gesso with plastic canvas circles. To soften the circles, I applied filmy layers of gesso with cheese cloth. At this point my original concept was abandoned. I started to see clouds and my inspiration took off. I imaged traveling through the universe to heaven. That's why I named the painting Homeward Bound.

What else have I been up to? I exhibited jewelry and paintings in Marshalltown and Nevada earlier this month. It's a lot of work, but the reward is meeting people who appreciate art. Next week I will start painting a mural that has been in the planning stage for the past several weeks. I have been working out the composition and color scheme. Check back for an update on the project.