March: I did not end up creating for the Childhood Show instead put in a couple of OLD pieces in Vice. Drama Queen and Foot Fetish. In fact, it appears that I did a whole bunch of nothing during March. But in reality, I had some major family issues happening, I attended and presented at a professional conference and I was participating actively in Flickr Photo Scavenger Hunts.
May: The Unmentionables Show was in the plan, but still recuperating from the intensity of Artfest, I wasn’t making very much art. However, I did find the energy to participate in another of Jen’s Challenges. I also started getting heavily into my triathlon training, so days of swimming, running and cycling took a bit out of art time.
June: I did not enter the Creation Myths, but instead entered a photograph in Art of the Fan. It was a great month for experimenting in fabric for a return to Jen’s Challenges.
October: Why did I plan to enter the Bat Show? I guess because I do like Halloween. Although I did not manage that, I did make a lot of new art for ArtSoMoFo. I also worked on the next month of BJP.
November: Another show planned and another show missed… although the election was a top priority on my mind, it did not inspire any art for On the Trail. I celebrated my doggie’s birthday and created my BJP in his honor. The school year is in full swing and the rainy season has begun, so art and fitness seems to have fallen a bit by the wayside. I will need to think of how I can improve being creative during these busy months.
December: I made tons of ornaments in past years so it made sense to enter Ornamental. But nothing new was made to enter the show, so I entered a couple of my old cute doggie ornaments. The year ended with a lot of SNOW and fun. I spent most of my creative energy making fun doll clothes for my nieces.
I love looking back to see what I planned and what I accomplished. It does help me see the cycles and patterns to my creative life. Now on to better planning my 2009 show entries.
My final day of ArtFest 2008 was Judy Wise’s floor cloth class. It was not a first choice (I wanted the waxy layers one). I was pretty envious of what I saw coming out of some of the classes that had been my top choices. Plus the room was tiny and therefore SO crowded that it was just uncomfortable. Here we were painting large canvases and the table space we each had was barely the size of our canvas. We had to watch out for paints and elbows, while storing most of our supplies on the floor. I held my paint palette in my hand most of the time, which was tiring, something I am not used to at all. Despite what could have been a horribly bad day… I got into the right head space, adapted for my needs in order to enjoy the time to paint. Of course I injected collage elements… it is impossible for paper to stay OUT of my work.
Judy went over some hints about prepping your canvas to be a floor cloth. She gave out a lovely color pamphlet and showed us a bunch of her canvases. Then we got right to work. I know I was tired and overstimulated at this point in the retreat, but I don’t feel that I really learned anything new in this class. I only spent a few hours on this before it felt finished, and I was FINISHED. I cleaned up early and went back to nap. Since I haven’t painted in this size before, I was actually impressed with my final project. This piece started my ideas for my current series about journeys.
I won’t be walking on this! I do have a bunch of unstretched canvas that might someday become a floor cloth. For now this one will be named “Girl Traveller“
My first class at Artfest 2008 was Opie and Linda Obrien for Who’s your Dada Dolls. We all received the same head and block for a body, but it is amazing the different things that came out of that class. I find that incredibly fascinating, the different ways to solve the same problem that can come from a group of very creative people. (Here are someexamplesfromshow and tell night) I was also amazed at how little Jen brought with her… I had tons of stuff! but her work was amazing none-the-less. I kept offering her some of my junk… but apparently she likes a challenge.
Opie and Linda are a hoot and I learned some VERY cool things about apoxie sculpt. A material that I had never heard of let alone tried. On my first piece, I really only used the apoxie as an attachment substance. It worked well to connect a plastic comet to the doll head and the heavy wooden wings to the wooden block body. The material takes paint easily and blends in to the sculpture, in addition to being a super way to attach awkward pieces. I would love to explore it more, perhaps. I really want to move beyond mixed media and sculpture in general to focus more on fabric. I do love sculpture so who knows what I will do! I wish I had learned more about wire and sculpture attachments but Opie and Linda had too much desire to do things for their students.
I brought some wings that have been in one of my mixed media drawers for awhile. These went on my body right away. But then I was stuck on how top heavy my piece was turning out. While I pondered this problem, I walked the room to see what other people were creating. Then I worked on some more sculpting material on a second piece, also with wings. I am not much of a clay sculptor, but I was so impressed and inspired with what some other classmates were designing, I had to try something a little more textured and design oriented. This little bug was the results.
Luckily on the walk back from lunch I found a couple of sticks that looked like they were legs with high heels. Turns out they were the perfect finish to balance out my first piece. I love these two dolls together, so I have named them “Little Boy Bird and Bitsy Bug”
I can’t believe that I haven’t blogged about my ArtFest Projects! This is my project from Michael DeMeng’s Transparency Collage Class. The supply list included a 5’x7″ frame. I hoped that he meant the picture hole part should be 5″x7″ and thankfully I was right. This frame was actually something I found in the art asylum over two years ago. I painted it silver and planned to turn it into a shrine. Unfortunately, it sat around and gathered dust as I did not find inspiration. I was glad to be able to turn it into something unique.
Michael DeMeng’s transparency class was held in the art asylum which ROCKED! We were able to look for lots of extra cool things to add to our assemblages (said with a Michael accent) I really did learn quite a bit in this class. I learned some new words (although they are coined Michael words) like the “usuag” actually not sure how to spell it but it stands for the usual colors he likes to mix. He shared a lot about mixing paints, creating washes and layering. He shared how to put a wash over metal (heat it with a heat gun first) He also talked about how assemblage is all about problem solving and that you need a ‘visual bridge’ to bring pieces together. . I didn’t take any notes or do any journaling this year, just wasn’t into it, but I wish I had written a few things down in this class.
I do admit that after taking his class I understand what all the buz was about. Michael is so funny, attentive, personable (uses your first name in a way that isn’t creepy) and really wants you to learn. He encouraged us to use new power tools, never tried to push his ideas or do something for us. He gave great feedback and though the hour long critique was long, it was also valuable. I haven’t really been in an adult art critique since college. How many times do we as artists working in our own homes get that opportunity? I almost wish there had been a platform for more peer to peer critique and feedback. I also learned how to make paper look burned without burning by using some simple paint techniques.
My favorite new supply was regular household caulk. It was great for texture and added depth. I used it over most of the front of my shrine. I didn’t have the exact types of acrylic washes that Michael recommends, but watered down my regular acrylics to get a similar effects. With the transparency we used a little white paint on the back of small areas to help them stand out more, this is how he makes the eyes really stand out.
The inside is even more layered and complex than the outside. I covered most of the silver painted frame with strips of old book pages(inside and out) before doing different washes and texture layers. I included puzzle pieces, an old compass, some mini apothecary bottles and several different transparencies. I had plans for many things to dangle off other areas and drilled the necessary holes (using electric tools was a new thing for me.) Since I ran out of time in the class these items did not get added at the time, I am still debating whether to add them, or leave it as is. (see some more detail pictures in my flickr Artfest 2008 Set)
When I am working on a series… titles are a cinch! But when I have something like this that is out of the norm it is more difficult. “Eyes Wide Forward” is what comes to me right now, we will see how it sits.
For my special Artfest friends I am creating some flowers for a swap. They are supposed to be some “before” flowers and some “after” flowers. So I thought dog/cat and paper/fabric combos. As I have gone from a cat lover to an avid dog fanatic (I do still love my cats, but I am not as obssessed about them as I am Charger) and I have gone from a mostly paper artist to a mostly fabric artist.
What a great way to start the new year! I was amazed at how packed the gallery was and how many people we doing gallery walk. It was pouring down rain and traffic getting there was pretty scary with many violent accidents on the side of the road. But Josh and I arrived in one piece, found some free parking only 5 blocks away and headed over to the gallery.
Arriving damp but excited, I found the owner and let him know I was there, then search for my art and someone that I might know. Found the art. He select 4 great pieces including GREED my all time favorite. We tried to eavesdrop on people talking about my art, but I wasn’t brave enough to introduce myself to these interested strangers. People were interested and interesting!
We checked out all the artist loft studios above the gallery. Six floors of great little hidden spaces, many with interesting, beautiful, weird, and some ugly art. Josh was amazed at all of it. He was wearing his cool new top hat and fitting in well with the funky artist look.
Josh had a good time looking at and critiquing the art. I think he was also inspired. Overall, I was very impressed with the gallery and had fun! But I wish the owner had introduced me to some people… or had run into some people that I know!
Now I need to make some new art for the February show and cross my fingers that some thing sell!
WOW… I was just looking through the art I have entered into EBSQ Shows over the past 4 years (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007) and was really impressed with my consistency to make art based on the themes and even to win recognition a few times. This year I am setting SMART Goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and with a Time line) instead of just the standard resolutions. So I have decided on my SMART-ART goal for 2008.
I will create at least one NEW artwork (in any medium of my choice as is fitting for the theme) per month to enter into EBSQ Shows.
The shows that I am scoping out and thinking up ideas include: