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May 23, 2014

Art on Silk

Our final project for my Fashion Institute of Technology class was a dye painting on a silk scarf.  The design was our choice - and we could use any of the many techniques we learned to execute it.  We needed to create our possible design as homework and bring several thumbnail sketches to class for discussion.  We then completed the scarf over the last few weeks of the semester.

I discovered and fell in love with a very large wall clock when my daughter and her family were living in London.  It was high in a stairwell at Michael Hoppen Gallery on Jubilee Place, off King's Road, in Chelsea.  This is the clock on a wall full of posters and photographs.

 

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I painted the clock in watercolors for my London sketchbooks in 2007.

WC.Clock.size.jpg

 

And then created several thumbnail sketches in which the image was cropped.

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We prepared a 36 x 36" cartoon of our designs, transferred them to the silk scarf, and painted them with Sennelier dyes - mixing all of our colors from the 3 primary colors plus black.  I used several different techniques to dye paint the image and here is my finished scarf - hanging on white paper on our classroom wall in our final class. 

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My original experience dye painting silk was in 1991-2 - and I made each of my 3 children a 6 foot square, quilted, dye painted, silk wedding canopy (chuppah) - in 1999, 2004, and 2005. 

Here are pictures of the 3 chuppahs: 

http://www.paperandthreads.com/2006/10/quilted_silk_wedding_chuppahs.php 

I LOVED spending 4 hours per week, in a well equipped surface design classroom this semester and learned new techniques from a professor who worked as a textile designer in the industry.  Now what??

 

 

November 22, 2011

Deliberate Practice - Drawing with My Watercolor Brush

I am envious of artists who "sketch" models at Figure Drawing" with their paintbrush and watercolor, AND I need to develop a simpler, looser style for capturing a scene, especially when on vacation.

These are my goals for the next months-year.  Can I do it?

I decided to paint Big Ben in London for the 7th time - as a first step.  In the past I have sketched/ painted/collaged Big Ben from my photographs as I explored other techniques, so it wasn't as frightening.  This was done quickly, so I could hopefully simplify the image.

 

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January 11, 2009

Cezanne Card Players at the Met

In the summer 0f 2007, we saw an exhibit of Leon Kossoff's drawings at the National Gallery in London.  Although I didn't love the style of his Conte drawings, I was fascinated with his method of working as an artist.  Kossoff was born in London in 1926 and is a prominent member of the School of London which also includes Lucien Freud.  On the exhibit page, there is a link to one of his very rare interviews, actually done in his exhibit space.  Kossoff never paints from photos and although he doesn't consider himself accomplished in drawing, he starts every painting with a fresh drawing and then takes his work back to the studio for painting.  Since he was a child, he has drawn and redrawn many of the master works at the National Gallery, and in the interview he relays how he gets his inspiration from these drawings and every day wakes up saying that maybe today he'll learn how to draw! 

http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/exhibitions/leonkossoff/default.htm

I wondered whether drawing and redrawing a masterpiece that speaks to you would lead to some type of magical experience if you were in the presence of the masterpiece and drawing it over many years.  So I thought I would try it when I returned to New York and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Last January I selected  Cezanne's Card Players which I have always admired.  It is prominently placed in the 19C galleries and actually has one of the few gallery benches in front of it in the middle of the room.

Using watercolors, instead of oils, was a challenge, but I really wanted my work to be more than just an ink or Conte drawing.

Here is the link to my drawing from Jan 2008:

http://www.paperandthreads.com/2008/02/museum_visits_in_new_york_city_1.php

Here is the link to the painting from from the 2008 drawing:

http://www.paperandthreads.com/2008/05/cezanne_card_players_painted.php

 

Yesterday I arrived at the Met when it opened and had 45 minutes during which I was completely alone drawing the Card Players in one of the 19th C. galleries.  The Met allows pencils, but not pens or paints, so like Kossoff, I returned home to finish it.  But I wanted to try to reproduce the colors, and worked from a photo that I took.

My 2009 Painting:

CardPlayers09SIZE.jpg

Cezanne made 5 Card Player paintings.  The first one has 5 figures and is part of the Barnes Collection in Philadelphia.  The Met has the second one which was painted in 1890-92.  - which has 4 figures.  The remaining 3 all have two figures.

I also thought that it might be fun to see how my style or skills change over the years - so far not much to my eye.  But I wonder whether next year I might decide not to draw in ink, or perhaps to change the colors, or even to move to more of an abstraction.  In the interview, Kossoff tells how he once went home from a National Gallery drawing session, and just painted the Rembrandt painting using his own style, without a predrawing on the canvas.  He has no idea why his mind just wanted to do that!

July 6, 2008

EDM Challenge #178: Draw Red

                        PhoneBooth2size.jpg

My husband and I were walking to our grandson's school in London to pick him up when I saw this wonderful row of 4 phone booths.  Usually they were single or in pairs in neighborhoods we visited - so I had to get this photo to later play with perspective.  And I never did!  That is my husband in the red baseball cap - waiting for me to catch up!  It was a nice challenge for me to draw this and I listened to Danny's recent Podcast while I sketched and painted it.  A good quiet Sunday afternoon.

September 3, 2007

Big Ben Studies

I recycled an old book on Elizabeth I, encorporating many kinds of watercolor paper for experimentation.  Since we returned from our last visit to London, I periodically play with the image of Big Ben from countless photos I took during our visits and use this recycled book.

Big Ben, even just a silhouette, is as much an iconic symbol for London as the Empire State Building is for New York.  I posted Big Ben #1 on May 24th.  Here are Big Ben monthly entries #2-5 from my Elizabeth  I book.  I'm curious how far I can take this - since I'm not someone who has even been able to work in a series.

                 

                            BigBen.17jul.size.jpg

 

                            BigBen.21Aug.size.jpg

                               

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                    BigBen.Collage.jpg

 

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