Monday, July 21, 2008

art day

Most weekends, my friend Carole drives to art vein studio and we have an "art day" together. The table above usually seats 6-8 people when I give workshops, but when Carole and I get together, we spread out and take the entire surface (actually, when I'm working on my own I take the entire space plus every available work surface I can find). Sometimes we try out new techniques together and sometimes we each do our own thing. Sometimes we do both. Here's what we did yesterday:

Inspired by Jo Horswill's wonderful collagraphs, Carole suggested we try some ourselves. We have very little experience doing this but buoyed with Jo's instructions, we started our plates. We used mat board, gluing on our collage elements with gel and matte medium. The heart-shaped design is Carole's and the other two are mine. As this is a multi-step process, we are allowing them to dry before we seal them with gesso and varnish (or would just varnish be sufficient?). We don't have a press so plan to go the rolling pin/brayer route. Or failing that, the drive-over-them-with-a-car method. We will post our experiments when we have printed them....we're keeping our fingers crossed that they won't be complete disasters! Jo, if you have any advice for us, we would welcome it. Thanks!

While our plates were drying, we each worked on some artist trading cards. I printed off some of my glass photos to mount on cards and Carole used a technique found in the book, Artist Trading Card Workshop, by Bernie Berlin. She cut out magazine face photos, applied a thin layer of gesso, and then re-drew the faces, adding funky hair and other details with a marker, Pebeo Touch 3-D paints, and acrylics. Gives a surreal effect and is a great way to get the hang of drawing faces.

It seems that most mixed-media artists know all about Cloth Paper Scissors, and although I had heard of it, I had never actually peeked inside a copy. Carole brought it in and it looks quite interesting. I've borrowed it and plan to peruse it more carefully this week. Of interest to me were the article on creating mini-assemblages with old rusty lightswitch covers and a peek into the creative spaces of other artists...always fascinating!

Another gift! Carole had just returned from a visit with her sister-in-law on Salt Spring Island, British Columbia. When her sister-in-law saw my blog and my reliquaries, she gave Carole this wonderful barnacle to give to me. It is one of her beach finds. I absolutely adore it and am so touched that she was inspired to pass this very precious object on to me. I will make it a beautiful home. Thanks Judy!

7 comments:

Wayfaring Wanderer said...

Now that sounds like a fun day.....I need to find people to get together with......

Cloth, paper, scissors is a great magazine!

Megan Coyle said...

It does sound like a fun day. I always like experimenting with materials and finding new ways of making art. That barnacle is lovely, what a sweet gift.

Jo Horswill said...

Kate, this is brilliant!!!
I am so thrilled with your beautiful post...what a day! I wish I could have joined you both :)
Gessoing the plate, gives you an oppurtunity to see your textured surface for what it is.
It helps in the application of the ink too. You can see where you are putting ink on, and rubbing it back, quite easily.
The 'car' method is a good one...make sure you wrap the plate in a heap of newsprint...drive over plate slowly. Looking forward to seeing your prints...
Love the ATCs too...great faces...will have to try this.
You are such an inspiration Kate!

kate said...

ww...I like to create alone when I need to focus on something but when I'm experimenting, it's fun to work with others. It fuels me and gives me new perspectives. And it's fun! Find yourself a kindred spirit(s) and go for it!

megan...I love that barnacle and it really is a sweet gift from someone I barely know. That makes it even more special.

jo...you are the inspiration! Literally! It would have been great if you'd joined us in the studio...maybe someday. Thanks for the advice about the gesso. Will go ahead with it. I don't hold out much hope for the rolling pin method. Looking forward to trying the car method. Thanks for inspiring us!

lynne h said...

kate, i've just found your blog, and oh my, what a delight it is! thank you for the link to jo's tutorial... i must try this collagraph printing...

i'll be back!

Jacky said...

Sounds like you guys have lots of fun when you get together!!!

Thanks for all of the inspiration from your post.

kate said...

lynne...thanks for visiting! Good luck with the collagraph printing. I look forward to seeing what you come up with while visiting your very cool blog! Will be visiting you often.

jacky...thanks for popping by! I've popped by your blog and have been inspired by your lovely art journals as well.