Sunday, September 22, 2013


Hand painted
Acrylic on cotton
6" x 8"
(older piece)

All in all, it's been a great weekend.  Spent some time becoming familiar with textile guru India Flint's book, Eco ColourSpent some time yesterday with artist friends, LeBrie Rich and Joan McGuire, testing fabric swatches in conventional dye baths. Back at the house, I rolled up some eco leaf bundles per the instructions in India's book and steam-tested them for dye effectiveness. Today, I over-dyed some of Saturday's test swatches in mashed blueberries, and also took the paintbrush to the pulp (some of which is still adhered to the linen in the first photo). To top the weekend off, I went to see an awesome retrospective exhibit of Portlander Stephen Hayes' prints and paintings and was truly inspired. Indeed, it was a great weekend!

The rains have arrived and the wild(?) bunny continues to visit.

Have a wonderful week!

Monday, September 2, 2013

More About Speed Painting

Sketchbook Speed Painting #2

Sketchbook Speed Painting #3

Several months ago, it dawned on me that my "sketchbooks" aren't really sketchbooks at all, but rather they are more like "idea books".   I use them to do thumbnail sketches (as in one to two inches square) of  possible resolutions to current paintings or ideas for possible future paintings; and also to jot down notes about various techniques and products, as well as ideas for possible future projects.  Meanwhile, I continue to be inspired by other artists' sketchbooks.  (Sophie Munns' and Lari Washburn's come to mind at the moment.)

Of course, the idea behind sketchbooks, and sketching in general, is that they offer freedom to loosen up and mess up while capturing scenes or ideas and simultaneously developing techniques and skill.  So with that in mind, I broke-in a new sketchbook last weekend that will be dedicated to "speed paintings".  The phrase came to me as I was opening the book to begin my first painting.  Now, by "speed",  I don't necessarily mean works that are completed in fifteen to twenty minutes or less, although they might be; but my intent is that the works will be completed in one sitting.   And my concept is slightly different than the Painting a Day (PAD) concept, that Annamaria Potamiti and others are currently adhering to with wonderful results. For one, I will not be doing these paintings daily.  Secondly, they will frequently not be representational.  And lastly, they will remain in my sketchbooks.  But . . .my speed painting goals will surely be similar: improve observational skills; expand my repertoire of techniques; develop confidence in color, composition, and mark making; gain speed; and develop images worth pursuing on canvas.   Sounds like a plan!  (Hoping I stick with it.)  I'll post  the results regularly on Facebook and/or Flickr.  Anyone care to follow suit?

Have a great week!