Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Dance 3

Dance 3, Mixed Media
30 x 25cm
I have quite a few small canvasses stacked away in my studio, I usually find them too small to work on and so they remain in the back of my cupboard. I love to play with watercolour and collage but I dislike having to put the image behind glass. I decided to experiment with watercolour on the blank canvas, wondering if the pigment would just sink into the canvas and dry very pale. I used tissue paper to collage some shapes on which to play and this dancer seemed to appear, she has very fat legs! I left some of the watercolour and painted over some of the areas with acrylic and then sealed the image with a coat of diluted soft gel. I now wish I had worked on a larger canvas, maybe I will use this painting as a spring-board for a larger image.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Acrylic Workshop

Recently, I conducted a, "Getting Acquainted with Acrylic" workshop. Most of the participants were oil painters who wanted to try out a different painting medium. The purpose of the workshop was to explore how the paint behaves on the painting surface using a variety of implements, e.g. brushes, knives, cloths, shapers and fingers, using a variety of mixtures of paint, from thin watery washes to sensory mixtures with the feel of soft serve ice-cream. I demonstrated how I customize my paint, adding a little medium and water until it is a lovely creamy consistency. We covered the painting surface with medium and painted directly into this. The medium keeps the surface moist and is ideal for colour mixing on the painting surface.
We created monochromatic landscapes after mixing a variety of values from indigo through to white in small tubs. It was fun to load two big brushes with light and dark paint and move the paint around to create spontaneous shapes. We used a palette knife to scrape into the paint and to mix the thick paint on the surface.
Using white ice-berg roses as our reference, we created lovely organic shapes in our second painting. Thin watery paint was splattered and poured onto the surface and allowed to drip, run and merge.
The shapes of the flowers were then wiped out with a cloth. We played with creating line with a pipette and rubber shapers. Paint was then applied with large brushes, a cloth and our fingers.