My First Gelli Plate Monotype

I’m so excited to explore printmaking again! I took traditional printmaking for two years when I was in Studio Arts at Capilano College. I loved the look of prints – the colours and textures – but found the process fairly toxic and slow. I preferred the immediacy of painting. The end of my college program was the end of my printmaking. Until…

I discovered the Gelli Plate!!!

Okay, this product has been around for several years but somehow I only stumbled across it recently. I was delighted to receive a Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plate for Christmas from my Dad (Thanks Dad!). Working with this plate to create monotypes combines what I love about printmaking with what I love about painting; rich colours, unexpected mark making and effects, layering possibilities and quick drying media. All you need is a Gelli Plate, brayer, acrylic paint [I prefer using Golden Fluid Acrylics] and paper. No acid, no stinky inks, and no giant press!

GelliprintIsland

My first print was pulled quickly, while baby was napping. I drew the island and details in with a Fine Line Sharpie later on that evening. These days I have to really work to grab moments for art making.

The possibilities with this printing process are endless; stamping, layering, collaging, fabric printing, stencilling, mixed media, journaling. Try a Pinterest search and you’ll find oodles of examples and tutorials. If I have time at the end of the month, I’d like to take artist Carla Sonheim’s Gelli Plate Printmaking Class.

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Fine Art America Shop: Open!

The last six months have been an amazing whirlwind of new baby! I haven’t had much time in the studio but I’ve been hard at work on a new project….

I’m delighted to announce that some of my favourite paintings will now be available on Fine Art America. You can custom order them as prints, canvas prints, and greeting cards. Check it out, leave a comment and shop!

Fine Art America Shop

Water: painting for a summer exhibition

This July I will be exhibiting with the West Coast Artist Collective in an exhibition about Water at Art Alchemy Studio/Gallery in Courtenay, BC. I will be doing several larger paintings but have started with these little panels that will be displayed in a group array (each artist is producing four to add to the overall piece.)

In starting these, my goal was to paint intuitively and best capitalize on the qualities that wood panels offer. I love how I can draw, print, scrub, scrape and sand works on wood. I was printing with bubble wrap, using sandpaper, finger painting, glazing, spraying with water and using a dollar store spatula [see video below].  I was also playing with Golden Fluid Acrylics – why have I been painting for years and not been using these??? They are wonderful! I’m looking forward to seeing how these little pieces will develop.

Fluid Acrylic from Nicole Warrington on Vimeo.

Water paintings in progress

Fluid acrylic with alternative brush

Sketching mixed media landscapes

FieldskymixedmediaIn an effort to make art more of a daily practice, I’ve been continuing to explore compositions and sketching on 2″ square scraps of paper. They are a lot less daunting than blank canvases. I also like how they are little objects. This one was created with watercolor paint, caran d’ache crayons and graphite. I’m happy with the ruddy, windswept sky and the intense blue. The marks in the foreground remind me of the old pilings in the Comox estuary that emerge like ghosts at low tide.

I made a trip to Victoria, BC this past weekend where I purchased a Strathmore Mixed Media sketchbook (hopefully the paper will wrinkle less than my current drawing book), more canvases/wood panels, and Golden Liquid Acrylics (which I’ve never used before)……so I’m excited to play more in the studio! Missing drawing, I’m hoping to incorporate more graphite elements back into my paintings too.

When I returned from Victoria I was excited to find out that a book I had ordered from the library had arrived. New inspiration! I’m pleased to be delving into Desire to Inspire: Using Creative Passion to Transform the World by Christine Mason Miller. I’m only a few chapters in but enjoying the insights, exercises and encouragement to value and prioritize my art practice.

2013 Begins in the Studio

After a sleep in and coffee in bed, I started off 2013 in my studio. Met with a grey, flat-light kind of day, I turned on all the lights in my studio, cranked some music on my Sonos (I’m so in love with it!) and got started on a canvas that I had prepped in December. I really wanted to contrast the day and celebrate the New Year by painting with brighter, bolder colours than the seas of blue I often use.

WCMini6

I loosely took inspiration from one of the sketches I did back in November (top right). I was so fond of these little sketches that I was intimidated by the task of capturing a little of their magic in a different media and scale. The sketches were only 2″ squares and this painting on canvas is 8″ square. I’m quite pleased with the results! My first painting of 2013:

NewYearsDay2013painting

Miniature Landscape Explorations

After watching Remembrance Day Ceremonies on this rainy day, I made myself a cup of tea and settled into the studio. I wanted to work on canvas but even though I had a few prepped and ready to go, I felt stumped about starting. So I dug around my scrap paper cupboard and found a very old piece of printmaking paper with a photocopy transfer on it (all the grey marks in the painting are from the transfer image). I started playing with watercolours and caran d’ache water soluble crayons and created this 4 x 6″ landscape:

Then I found some teeny-tiny scraps of a watercolour painting I cut up a year ago. These scraps, with various degrees of watercolour marks on them, turned out to be perfect for my blank canvas creative block. I felt very free and had a great time creating these six  2″ landscape explorations using watercolour, caran d’ache crayons, and graphite:

My studio and materials today:

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Painting Full of Love

This August I created a painting for Jordan & Marissa in celebration of their wedding.  I love creating paintings with particular people in mind as I think of them throughout the painting process and hope that they can feel this when they look at the painting. The bright pink in the base of this landscape reminded me of Marissa’s warmth and vibrancy. The happy couple have adventured in beautiful oceanfront places like Tofino and Australia. This painting hopes to capture the spirit of all of the places that have inspired them, reminding them of their adventures and journeys together both past and future. Best wishes M&J!!! Woot! Woot!

Initial pencil crayon sketch.

First pink and orange coats of base.

Layering in islands and teal oceans.

Detail of textures created with modelling paste.

Finished painting. (Thanks photo editor!)