Monday, September 29, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

The very talented Maya Matthew has tagged me to participate in the"Around the World Blog Hop"!

Each participant must share their answers to these questions: 

1. What am I working on? 
I'm working on a couple of different things right now. If you're a regular reader of my blog, you know that I had three miniature pieces in a traveling exhibit called Tripletta.  All three of my pieces sold recently, so I now have to replace them. The pieces  that sold were called Seed Story I, II, and III; you can see them if you follow the Tripletta link. So,  I'm working on some more Seed Story pieces to replace them in the exhibit. Here are two that are not yet finished:

I'm also working on another piece in the Heron and Crow series, which are actually illustrations for what will hopefully be a children's book:

Heron and Crow II, monotype with mixed media, 9.75 x 9 inches

 It's about 90% finished, but still needs some tweaking here and there. 

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre? 
The mixed media genre is pretty wide open and eclectic, so I chose to answer this question in regard to monotype. Traditionally, monotype is usually done by coating the plate (I use a sheet of plexiglass) in one color of ink, then wiping the ink away to create the image. In contrast, my working is made by building up layers of transparent inks. Essentially, my method is almost the direct opposite of  the way most monotypes are made.

3. Why do I write/create what I do?  
The images I make are formed from the vocabulary of symbols that I’ve developed as I sought to express the theme that lies at the foundation of it all: a deep belief in the unity and connectedness of everything in the universe.  Related to this is my conviction that every part of the earth is sacred, including the myriad beings that ride it through space.  At the most basic level, we are made of the same stuff as the stars, the trees, the air, the ocean.  Having come from the same source, we are all connected in the most intricate ways, both visible and invisible.  This belief is expressed by the transposition of objects, the overlapping of transparent images, and by forms that seem to transform into something else.  I'm constantly searching for more effective methods of revealing this mystery, and it is the basis of my artistic practice.

4. How does my writing/creating process work?
My process for these mixed media pieces usually begins with a monotype base layer, to which I add further layers of color.  The monotype itself consists of many layers of oil-based lithographic ink, thinned to transparency in order to allow the colors of previous layers to show through.  In this way, I believe the mixing of colors to be richer and more varied than if I pre-mixed the inks in advance.  Normally there are at least four to six passes through the press, with leaves and other plant materials included in at least some of the pressings.  All of these pieces are done on a substrate of Rives BFK 100% cotton printmaking paper; inks and other materials are as archival and lightfast as possible.  

After the monotype is dry, layers of watercolor, colored pencil, and other (mainly transparent) media are added.  Collage elements may also be added; these are usually pieces of discarded monotypes.  With this layering process, I hope to achieve a certain luminosity and brilliance, as well as a blending and unity of images. This unity is an objective in conveying the content of my work.  The process I use in creating these pieces is one that I developed myself through trial and error, in an effort to achieve the result I desired.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find anyone interested in continuing the blog hop, so I guess the hop stops here. If you'd like to join in, please let me know, and I'll send you the details.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

More Prayer Flags

 Prayer Flag V

Prayer Flag VI

Once I get on a roll with something it's hard for me to stop. Two more Prayer Flags just came to me, so here they are. I may choose three of the six to substitute for the three sold Seed Story pieces (two of them here and here) in the Tripletta traveling show, but I'm also working on some more Seed Story pieces, so we'll see.

Hope you enjoy them!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Studio Table

The incomparable Seth Apter of the The Altered Page has challenged us to reveal the truth, and I have accepted the challenge. In Seth's words, "Let's go behind the curtain, throw any feelings of shame out the window, and show the world the underside of art and craft. I'll show you mine if you show me yours!"

Embarrassing as it is, here are photos of my art table in all its messy glory, just as it happened to be on this 20th day of September, 2014. Was I tempted to clean it up, just a bit? Yes, I was. But I left it as it really was, and snapped a few shots to share with you.

Yes, this is where I actually work, in the middle of all this chaos. And I do, pretty much, know where everything is, which surprises me as much as it probably does you.

And, as Seth noted in his own reveal, when we run out of room on the table, the mess tends to spread onto the floor...

For links to over a hundred (and counting) other artists' studio table views, head over to The Altered Page, Studio Table Reveal.  I just love seeing the reality of other artists' messes! Am I some weird kind of voyeur, or does it just make me feel less guilty about my own?  Whichever, it's great fun!

Thursday, September 18, 2014


collage by Derek Gores

Vietnam War Memorial by Maya Lin

ceramic plate by Kentucky artist Wayne Bates

Native American totem pole, Smithsonian

Goddess by Donna Iona Drozda

Small Dreams by Claudio L'Estremo Montgriffo

The color for "Searching for Roy G Biv" this month is black, and my goal was to find the widest variety of black art works possible.  Do you think I achieved it?

For more photos of basic black, check out the blogs of our hostesses, Jennifer Coyne Qudeen and Julie Booth.  Thanks for looking!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Weekly Quick Collage: Space Buddha

Space Buddha      5 x 5 inches
ingredients: vintage book pages, image transfers, watercolor pencil drawing, vintage stamps, magazine cutouts

What is meant by the soul as suchness is the oneness of the totality of all things.
                                                                                                                                ~ Ashvaghosha

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Prayer Flags III and IV

Two more little collages in the Prayer Flags series, which I'm considering using as replacements for pieces in the traveling show Tripletta. My three Seed Stories pieces sold, so I have to send in new pieces for the show.  Both are monotypes with collage.

  Prayer Flag III

Prayer Flag IV

Have a glorious weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Prayer Flags

For the past few months, I have had three pieces in a traveling art exhibit called Tripletta, a show of miniature works of art. It is now in its third venue, and at the opening a couple of weeks ago, all three of my pieces sold. This is fantastic news, of course. The only problem, which really is not a problem, is that I now have to replace those pieces, since the exhibit is scheduled to go on to other venues. (To see two of them, go here and here; unfortunately, I never had a chance to photograph the third.)

The reason it's not a problem is that I love to make art. In fact, I've started a series of little monotype/collages that I call Prayer Flags. The only problem is that I'm not sure I like them enough to put them in the exhibit; I keep thinking that maybe I should continue with the Seed Story theme instead.

Prayer Flag I

Prayer Flag II

What do you think? Should I go with these, or try to do more Seed Stories?