A NEW CREATIVE PRACTICE
Welcome to FRESH PAINT FRIDAY where I’m going to feature what’s on my palette, easel or gelli plate each week. From colour mixing to new materials to finished pieces, I’m going to share my painting process and creations every Friday. Last December I started a photography project called Mindful Mondays and it has been great to keep me motivated and creating, even when I’m short on time. Inspiration is only one part of art making – a commitment to dedicated practice is equally important. FRESH PAINT FRIDAY is a sticky note to myself to show up to the studio and PAINT!
This week I returned from a lovely time away in Victoria and Mayne Island. I came home with several projects in mind but when I went into my studio I felt stuck. So I grabbed an old/abandoned gelli print from my scrap pile – much less daunting than blank canvas! I had been playing with my new Liquitex Acrylic Inks and had a piece of paper with rich, black marks on them. This work began with one of those torn pieces being collaged onto the gelli print to create a horizon. As I worked, layering acrylic inks and fluid acrylics and drawing with my new Stabilo pencil, that little scrap that I started with became ice flowing into the sea. As the acrylics flowed and I worked intuitively, I found my own flow and overcame that stuck feeling.
What do you do to get un-stuck?
Yesterday I hurried to the library to pick up my long-awaited book, Painted Pages by Sarah Ahearn Bellemare. I only had a little bit of time to flip through it but I was already inspired. I took a journal page that I didn’t like and worked over, saving only the ladybug from the original. So much fun – I could collage for hours and hours! I’m using collage bits,pencil crayons, acrylic paints, watercolour paints, coloured pens, pencils and watercolour pencils. Finger painting – glue sticking – expressive play!
I’m taking A Free Spirit Life’s Mothering with heART e-course right now and this is one of my art journal pages. I have to work quickly during nap times but I’m starting to enjoy the hustle to create. It makes me work intuitively and prevents me from getting too fussy. I’m loving using mixed media. In this collage I’ve used maps, magazines, watercolour, gesso, pencil, pens, and fluid acrylics.
A couple of years ago I did several chickadee paintings, which were meant to turn into a painting series. But as painting made way for studies to become an elementary school teacher, the birds sat quietly in the ‘future paintings’ index of my mind. This winter I have started reintroducing birds into my paintings. I am happy to have my feathered friends back in the studio with me. Cotter Creek Crow and Nesting Hwy 4 are both acrylic paintings with paper collage elements. They were painted during the same period of time but reflect both my minimalist, clean and modern sensibility (Cotter Creek) as well as my desire to layer and age an image (Nesting). Cotter Creek became the inspiration for a commissioned two-crow painting that was a wedding gift for a couple who married on the beach in Ucluelet, BC.
Nesting Hwy 4 reawakened my interest in collage. I poured over the pages of Collage Discover Workshop by Claudine Hellmuth. Collage materials gathered, I set to work on a small collage box. It is amazing how crayons, a heat gun, collage paper, sticks, paint, gel medium, sand paper and other materials can spread so widely for the creation of a miniature piece! I created Night Flight for my friend’s 30th birthday present.
I was able to present it to her, a mutual bird lover, the day went birding at Reifel Bird Sanctuary in Ladner, BC.
It was fitting that we actually saw an owl that day (though it was a barred owl, not a barn owl).