I am just back from a four day course with Caroline Bartlett – who was a wonderfully giving and patient tutor who spent time with each of the six students all working in different ways and with very different outcomes. Thank you Caroline! We had been asked to bring in a collection of about six small objects with which to work during the course. Here are mine:
All of these metal items have been collected from the shore around Chichester Harbour and are, from left to right, a baked bean can, an aluminium canister, a shell case from world war 1, a Fanta can, an old paint can, and an aerosol butane gas lighter fuel canister.
To warm up, we were asked to produce a series of continuous line drawings using a variety of media. I chose to overlap my drawings of just one object, the paint can, to start with.
Paint can 1
Paint can 3
Paint can – Continuous line drawing
Continuous line drawing 3
Continuous line drawing 1
The use of thin paper meant that by turning it over and working on both sides, you could see through from one side to the marks on the other.
Next, I made a template based on the paint can and made a series of cut out’s using some paintings I had already made and brought with me. Here’s one:
Finally, I thought that the row of objects together made for interesting shapes so went back to the continuous line drawing, using the reverse of a piece of paper already drawn onto:
I’ll return to this later when looking at screen printing.
Over two weekends (5 days) in May, I will be part of the Chichester Art Trail exhibiting from our home with my husband Alan. As some of you will know, I have found that I cannot label myself in any particular way and struggled with what I should show. The final decision is to present three different types of work and canvas feedback from visitors to the Art Trail to see what they did and didn’t like. The first work to come back from the framers is the most traditional – three pieces in mixed media. I used found twine from the beach and acrylic ink to start with, and then built up a series of layers with more ink, cold wax and charcoal powder. Here are the results:
The next task is to finalise titles and then decide on pricing. The tricky bit!!
I have a need for texture in my work and have been experimenting with different ways of adding depth and texture to my work on paper. This week I have revisited collage and started to explore a new medium – cold wax. Treading gently at first, I have added a little wax to my watercolour paper based pieces and am liking the effect. Here are some of the collage images started recently at West Dean College:
This next piece was completed in one go – acrylic ink, wax, charcoal and a little collage material from my trusty drawer of bits
And finally, this one, compiled from three pieces which I did whilst on holiday in Scotland last year. I had quickly dashed off a series of three sketches – I liked the immediacy and vibrancy of the marks but each felt incomplete. Remembering what I had been told by Cas Holmes last year, I threw caution to the wind, tore the pieces up and reassembled them – there they are before and after:
I’d love to know what you think – I won’t be offended so do shout! Thanks
I am almost exclusively interested in landscape in my art work although my outlook is a little broader with photography. I recently came across the original images that I took whilst on a short holiday in Lanzarote in 2014 and, as I am now further along my artistic path, saw them with fresh eyes. I was particularly drawn to the shots that I took which considered the strong light and shade of that November in the Canaries where the shadows cast were so different to those that we see here in the UK. I began to instinctively want to crop them to emphasise the abstract shapes created on the walls around our villa. I played with photoshop a little, altering light and dark, shadow and contrast and saw that a single starting point could yield a vast range of images by using different crops and treatment. The next step will be to recreate what is seen here using paper and various mixed media – primarily ink, gels, charcoal and my latest find, cold wax.
There may be a lesson here to show that it is always worth re-visiting work years later and seeing it anew – you may be surprised at the potential in what you had discarded.
Here are just a few examples – I love the simplicity of form yet opportunity to play with texture that exist here – what do you think?
During my Foundation Diploma at www.westdeanorg.uk I undertook a series of courses working on both paper and fabric. Reflecting on what I had done over the two year, I realised that the work which got me most excited was that involving texture. Whilst I enjoyed printing in various forms, the flat and pristine outcomes just did not resonate with what I am all about which is texture, movement, mark making, serendipity, rough edges and a certain rawness.
Earlier this year I spent time with the lovely Jilly Morris – doing a course called “Visual language – marks, textures and surface.” I knew immediately I saw her work that she and I were on the same wavelength and so it proved! In fact, in between booking the course and undertaking it, a couple of people said, “I know who you should do a course with ….” which further endorsed my feeling.
If you like what I like, I thoroughly recommend a course with Jilly – here’s a taste of what we did – it involved sandpapers, stickers, wire brushes, sticking tape, beeswax, pastels, and WD40 to name but a few!
These are really simple starting points. Each of Jilly’s pieces comprise many layers and I look forward to further experimentation. So far, I have been playing with salt and saline solution, lemon juice, PVA glue and masking tape, liquid soap, candle wax, various polishes, sand, golden texture mediums and cold wax medium. I am restricting art media to acrylic ink and charcoal powder for the time being.