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November 2, 2010

Quilt Journal Page #6

I'm off to The International Quilt Festival in Houston, but wanted to post my last quilt journal page before departing.  They were photographed quickly as they hang on my apartment-sized design wall - a little crooked.

This page was created with the thermafax screens that I made last month and thickened procion MX dyes.  I loved the technique!  The image of the models was a green dye print and then I free-motion stitched it in black.  All of the other stuff in the background was printed from other screens. 

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Here are the first 6 all hanging together.  I will definitely go back to do a little more quilting, but I'm trying to keep the creative momentum going.  I have at least 4 more ways that I want to try to transfer images of the model to fabric.

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I have a blog post comparing Pentel Pocket Brush Pen and watercolor washes in the Strathmore Visual Journals that will be automatically uploaded while I'm gone.  I didn't think my husband would step-in to post it!  But I won't be able to moderate comments until I return on Sunday. 

October 30, 2010

Inspiration from the Recent Picasso Exhibit

Our Journal Study Group went together to see the recent Picasso exhibit at the Met.  Picasso's linocut reinterpretation of a Lucas Cranach II painting made us wonder whether could reinterpret a master painting and make a print using fun foam stamps. 

 Cranach.jpg

              Lucas Cranach II, Portrait of a Woman, 1564

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   Pablo Picasso, Portrait of a Woman after Lucas Cranach II, 1564

Pat developed a method for this challenge and published a recent article about it (faux silk screen printing) in the September/October issue of Cloth, Paper, Scissors. 

As we exited the Picasso exhibit, Melanie and I saw Cranach The Elder's painting of Judith with the Head of Holofernes and we immediately selected it for our challenge.  Pat selected a painting of St. Jerome by El Greco.  Today we gathered around my dining room table and made our prints.

I took a photo of the painting in the Met and made a painting in my sketchbook in preparation.  Today I traced it, transferred the image to adhesive backed fun foam, and made multiple stamps (at least 12!).  Here are the 3 images. 

Cranach Painting

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   Lucas Cranach the Elder, Judith With the Head of Holofernes, 1530

My Sketchbook Page

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My Stamped Image:  approximately 6 X 9"

       Judith%2Csize.jpg

I ran out of room on my sketchbook page and didn't draw Holofernes' head.  I'll need to do it separately, make stamps, and add it to my next print. 

Go here to see Melanie Testa's print ( she has his head!) and here to see Pat Gaignat's print.  We agreed to each upload our prints this morning.  I thought for sure that Pat was going to describe me carving stamps with a box cutter or upload a photo of the mess I created, but she didn't.  She did however, talk about the men outside my window.  Our apartment building is in the final phase of facade repair, and since we live on the second floor, the scaffolds are right outside our windows.  Over the last year Pat has taken many photos of "the men."

We had lots of fun while working on our project, learning and experimenting as we went.  My drawing was biggest and I failed to simplify enough, so they were pushing me along. They wanted me to get done so I could make a tag for each of them before they left!  See the tags on Pat's blog post this morning.

October 23, 2010

Figure Drawing This Week

I really enjoyed drawing the two models at The Society of Illustrators this week -  and liked my four 5 minute poses best.  I'm thrilled that I was even able to get some facial features in these drawings - definitely some progress for me.

The woman model had a mohawk with very long gray hair down the stripe. 

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The male model had very long dreadlocks and a very athletic nimble body - with fabulous short poses.

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These drawings were done with a 9B graphite pencil - thus the smudges.

October 20, 2010

Comparison of 3 Strathmore Visual Journals

I decided to do a direct comparison of the 3 Strathmore Visual Journals by doing a sketch in pencil, then ink, and finally reasonably wet watercolor painting.  See my previous post for information about why I am using these instead of my usual daily handbound watercolor journals.  I will tag each of these entries in the "Strathmore" category on the right sidebar. 

Here are the current 3 pages for comparison - all drawings were done at the same time, then ink was added to all at the same time, and then they were painted.  I painted the figures, going down the line.  After they dried, I painted all of the borders.  After they dried, I tried glazing with the complementary color and scrubbing with a stiff brush.  In reality I probably only waited 5-10 minutes between painting the layers.

 Watercolor:

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Bristol Vellum:

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Mixed Media:

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Conclusion:  The different paper types were more similar than different in this direct comparison with pen, ink, and watercolors.  Each of the pages buckled a little as it dried, but as soon as they were dry, I scanned them (not more than 1 hour later) and there were no shadows from the buckling.  And this morning, the pages are flatter.  The glazing looked similar on each, and I was able to lift a little paint from each page with a stiff brush, and with only a little roughing up of the paper.   I like to use both sides of my 140 lb watercolor paper, so next I need to test these pages further by painting on the other side. 

I've worked on a few other pages in each journal and after I've done a few more, I'll post the results for a single journal, one by one, showing the various ways I tested my tools in that journal.

October 8, 2010

Learning a New Skill

I took a class with 2 of my art buddies this week, in which we learned how to make Thermofax screens that can then be used to transfer images to paper or fabric (with fabric paints or thickened procion MX dyes).  You can see details of our day here in Rayna Gillman's blog and a humorous recounting of the day in my friend Pat Gaignat's blog.  I'm the one in the gray shirts in these photos. 

I took lots of black and white images with me to make screens, but I was most interested in getting screens with images of my pregnant model from figure drawing.  I also made screens from designs that I can use for background surface design, screens from some of my stamps, and screens from photos I took of Manhattan.  While in class I tested some of the screens with Profab paints in my watercolor sketchbook and on fabric - and couldn't wait to go home and try printing with thickened dye on fabric for quilt journal page #6.

Here are the 3 journal pages that I made - very quickly and with very little thought.  But it gives you some idea of the images I can now print. 

                 Thermofax1.jpg

                      Thermofax2.jpg

                         Thermofax3.jpg