Thursday, January 29, 2009

Testing Various Surfaces

These past months I have been working on a variety of canvases, Yupo, and boards. What am I looking for? An opportunity to appreciate opaque paints. For years, actually decades, I have enjoyed the pure stained-glass look of clear watercolor, and I thought of opacity as a crutch for corrections. But opaque areas are really another dimension in the continuum of paint surfaces. 

In this piece, "Yellow Slippers" 12 x 12, I'm trying out my new linen canvas. It both acts as a mid-tone and neutralizes the first layers of acrylic paint. Brighter areas take a second or third application to bring up. Pattern is also a new and exciting addition to my repertoire. You never stop learning and experimenting when you are an artist. Just keep on painting.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Vandalizing Arches

Here is the second in my graffiti series. While I'm have great fun "vandalizing" my Arches paper, my friends' reactions to this piece cover the whole spectrum--from being afraid of clowns to discussions on Alfred E. Newman. (He is more distracting than I thought that he'd be.) And some folks LOVED the piece. What do you think?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Sketching a la

This wonderful little accordion sketchbook was a gift from Becky Pelley when I moved from Rockford, IL, and the perfect surface for drawing a la It started out as a wave pattern and quickly migrated into an underground home for some little beast. It may turn into a bunny book for my grandson. Doodling is always a great way to loosen up that creative energy. How do you loosen up?

Friday, January 9, 2009

Art and Poetry

Bev Adams from the Cazenovia Watercolor Society surprised me with this poem at the end of our workshop. Thank you Bev, I am really honored. The slide show following this post is from that great workshop. Can I interest your group in one?


Susan Tregay 
Has a wonderful way
Of making a workshop fun.
We tape and we mop
Anything that's a flop
Then marvel at what we have done.
She stresses CONtent
And won't be conTENT
Till we are expressing our passion.
Says she, be unique,
Develop technique
So your paintings are not purely fashion.

Jasper Johns brought our Susan
Out of  confusion
And he changed her art life forever.
He said  don't relax
Let your painting climax
At the end of a threefold endeavor.

Sue pushes brainstorming
For ideas a-forming
She herself  has a brain that is quirky.
Though her houses are cockeyed,
Her perspective quite lopside,
Still, she rarely turns out a turkey. 

For pupils perplexed
About what to do next
She shouts loud and clear  "Make it darker"
Apply lots of paint,
Don't be what you ain't
And then make it even more darker. 
(apologies to my English teachers.)

Can bring elation
Sayeth Susan, our woman wise
Step by step
Through goals she swept
Until she reached the prize. 

Now we offer our thanks
You've filled our art banks
And we each have a flip book to treasure.
You helped us define
What is known as design
And you've  given us very full measure.

Thank you, thank you, Susan, for a fun
and instructive four days.
And thank you for teaching us that "nice" is not enough.       

Cazenovia Watercolor Society Workshop
May 5 to 8   2008  

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Finish that Painting with punch and Pizzaz! Learn THE PLAN. Sign up for a workshop for your group.