Friday, March 24, 2017

Fox and Chickens Play Poker


Here's an early phase of my latest project.  I started it to enter in Bead and Button's 2017 Bead Dreams Competition, but I didn't get it done in time.  I'm thinking if I do a really good job on it I can enter it next year. For the category I'm going to enter the piece must be 85% polymer clay.  It's going to be a poker game inside the chicken coop.

At this stage, I've made most of the players - the fox, five chickens, and a mouse - as well as the inverted pails that two of the chickens are standing on and the straw bale on which the game will be played.

I've sculpted and baked the pieces, then I attempted to antique them, which I where I began to run into trouble.  This is a technique that I've never been too successful with.  You have to completely seal the polymer clay or the antiquing medium soaks right in and can't be rubbed off.  So I sealed each piece with two coats of satin finish acrylic varnish.  Then I mixed acrylic paint with Golden air brush medium which I understand to be an acrylic medium.  

I had my usual few instances of places that I hadn't properly sealed.  But, worst of all is that for some reason the antiquing mixture that I used ended up giving the pieces a gloss finish which I don't like at all.  Plus, the fox is no so dark that I'm not happy with it.

For tomorrow, I'll have to think of a way to correct these problems.


Thursday, March 23, 2017

My "Trade" for Art and Soul


Here's my finished "trade" for the up-coming Art and Soul retreat.  I selected three vintage buttons from my stash and sewed them on.  I was going to glue a card to the back with QR codes for my blog and Etsy shop but I decided that would be tacky.  So instead, I'm hand-writing "Art and Soul, Portland, 2017  Kaaren Poole  kspoole@hughes.net.  I figured it would be nice to have contact information but not anything hinting of a "sales pitch."

I think this is pretty cute if I do say so myself.  Oh, just thought that I should put a copyright symbol and my signature on the front.  You never know.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Blue Crows


This is a very unusual painting for me.  I painted the border and the center part about a month ago as part of a program for my local art group, Placerville Art Association.  Pen Slade brought a photo she had taken and four of us volunteers painted from that photo during the meeting.

It was a challenge for me because I'm not a landscape painter and I knew that the photo would be a landscape.  I just looked for blocks of color and took it from there.  As I looked at it over the past few weeks, I determined to not do any more work on the central landscape.  As I continued to look at it, I imagined blue crows in that landscape so I did these silouhettes in a medium/dark blue.  My intention was to add some detail to the crows with glazes of Indigo to develop form and a suggestion of the main body, wing, and tail shapes.

But my sister declared the painting "finished" when she saw it this morning.  And since I don't think she's ever said that about any of my other paintings, I decided to honor her opinion.  It's finished!

I do like the use of color in this painting and my departure from "natural" color.  Perhaps I'll do more.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Welcome Spring!


I decided it needed more flowers and, to reduce the "spotty" look of the background, a darker background edge.  Once I was done with those additions, I was much happier with it.  Then I felt the need to add the dots around the edge.  And - done!

Saturday, March 11, 2017

A Problem


Once again, a lack of planning has created problems for me.  I've spent a fair amount of time painting the robins and the spring beauties only to realize that the composition is a problem.  Or, I guess I should say that it needs more elements to make the composition good.  So I've put it up by the TV and will be studying it tonight trying to figure out where to go from here.

But I have to say that despite the problems, I actually enjoy working in this more spontaneous way.  We'll just have to see how it turns out.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Spring


My art club is having a challenge for our March meeting - create a piece with "spring" as the theme.  Here's the beginning of mine.

I began with a collage of just text, including pieces of pages of old books as well as a bit of hand-writing.  The hand-writing expresses a few of my memories about springtime in the woods near where I grew up in northern Ohio and, drawing on those memories I decided that "spring beauty" wildflowers and baby robins would star in this piece.

After the collage dried, I added glazes with Golden fluid acrylics.  Then I did the drawing directly on the piece.  The dark dots you see are the eyes for the baby robins that I'm planning on including.

I'm painting the flowers by adding white gesso, applying with a side-loaded brush with the load of color on the highlight edges.  Then I added a bit of yellow green in the centers and the dark fuschia vein markings on the petals.  Last, I added the stamens with green stalks and Quin violet heads.  I'm doing the leaves with successive glazes, working light to dark.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

The Painting is Done on the Kitty


The painting is done.  Now I need to make it into cards that I can print on my Epson printer.  I'll use Photoshop Elements to size it, add text, and make a full sheet of repeats.  The problem is that I don't really know how to use Elements.  At least I'm having a hard time putting several images on the page.  I don't understand the concept of "layers" so I'm pretty much lost.  Actually, I think I get the concept, just not how to use it.

These cards should be pretty nice if I can get through the computer part!