Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Purple cabbage and gel medium

Hmmm...I'm very tired and this might not be my most brilliant post.  It's been a very busy week here in my little world, but not busy time near the computer.  I'm teaching a lot this month, 4 week watercolor and colored pencil classes locally, and a one-night pen and ink class in Philadelphia next week.  Teaching is a pleasure, but the preparations are a surprising amount of work.  All you teachers out there know this already, don't you?  How do you do it every day?  For each class I need to provide interesting subject matter which is appropriate to the technique we're working on (today the grocery store provided asparagus, red onions, and purple cabbage), and have a demonstration piece planned and prepared to show the technique.  Here's one of my drawings from the colored pencil class, a nautilus shell.  We were talking about the concept of working on colored paper, where your middle ground color is already there, and you need to think about adding both darks and lights to make the complete image jump out.  This is one of my favorite techniques.

I spent the afternoon today experimenting with acrylic gel medium.  My art pal Adam uses this as a structural background for his fantastic paintings.  I'm working (with a super short deadline) on a series of big new paintings on wood for a show at Korova which will go up in March, and am so far very pleased with the medium.  I'm hoping to be able to use it to glaze bright layers of acrylics and add depth and dimension.  Also pleased with the two paintings I started today, I think these will flow as well as the paints will.  Will keep you posted.

On a totally other note...I always have a book going, and just finished a really good one.  Four Spirits by Sena Jeter Nashlund (she wrote Ahab's Wife which I keep raving about to anyone who will listen).  It is set in Birmingham in the early 1960's and is a compelling tale of the struggle for racial equality.  Wow.

3 comments:

Gary Rith Pottery Blog said...

Ooooh! Such a pretty shell!

Both Sides of Ben Marlan said...

any 5 minute shell recipes?

Christi said...

Recipes for drawing shells or eating them? Escargot or chiaroscuro?