Monday, March 22, 2010

A style of my own

Every time I've moved geographically - and boy, I've done that a lot - it affects my art. This move, 5 years ago, is finally settling in. When we came to Three Rivers we lived in about 800 square feet of dilapidated cabin while we were building our house. With 2 big dogs and 2 cats, well, I couldn't find space to paint that didn't involve pet hair. And, with the process of building, I couldn't find creative energy.

Then, we moved into the house. We had barren soil around us from new construction, and much of my energy went into getting the outside in some sort of shape. That, of course, will be a lifetime process; but it's at an acceptable level now. And, that has allowed my creative energies to finally move into the realm of my art in a more dramatic way.

All this leads up to what I'm doing now:

This triptych represents Eagles' Nest peak, which I can see from the east window of my studio. What I've done is start with three 16 x 20 inch canvases. Each of those has about 8 different papers adhered with matte medium - rice paper, various tissue papers, etc. They are scrunched, one of those technical terms I love, and twisted and mounded, to give texture in places I want. Of course, the papers have a character of their own, and I have only partial control of the texture results. I like that. I want my paintings to tell me what they want to be.

After lots of paper application and drying, I can begin to paint. That's when the textures start to come alive. This one is all acrylic; some also have watercolor and/or pastel. So, it's paint, let dry, paint, let dry, and on and on. Finally comes the application of a varnish so the piece can hang without glass. I've chosen a gloss varnish because I like how it highlights the texture.

As a postscript, I'm so glad Studio Tour is over! It's utterly exhausting for me and takes my energy away from my creativity and puts it on the eternal "will it sell" - which I don't like. I'm happier making my art and letting it be appreciated or not. So there.

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