Monday, September 21, 2020

1 August - 15 September 2020

New Work began 1 August through 15th of September 2020

Supplies used: 

Journal I made from 100 lb Accent Opaque card stock and Art Alternative MDF panels for the covers size 10 x 16" opened 

Acrylics: Holbein, Sennelier, Utrecht and Golden 

Stabilo All in One water soluble pencils in various colors

Palette knife 


During that time I read and watched:

Arshile Gorky The Plow and the Song A Life in Letters and Documents

Ardent Nature Gorky Landscapes

Gorky: The Implications of Symbols

Gorky: A Retrospective of Drawings

Gorky: A Retrospective

The Art in Painting by Albert C. Barnes

Rainer Werner Fassbinder's Berlin Alexanderplatz

Why no collage? For various reasons. Everything from, I've been wanting to go back to my roots (paint alone on paper) to I couldn't find any images (collage or painted ones) that adequately expressed how many of us are feeling right now.

Tuesday, September 08, 2020



I'm not hiding under a rock. It's weird not traveling, not teaching or doing any of the things that you've done for more than twenty years. I haven't disappeared. I'm just dipping my toes into something familiar but approaching it in a new way. I'll have more to share very soon. In the meantime, I hope that you are well.

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Utrecht Artists' Colors Heavy Body Acrylic

I'm still using up my tube acrylic paints but wanted to try the Utrecht in jar form. I'm delighted with the consistency and the pigment load so much that I thought I'd share here as folks ask about paint recommendations on a regular basis. I will be buying these on a regular basis. Not all of my go to colors are available from Utrecht so I have to go elsewhere (Holbein's Mauve, Quinacridone Gold, Greenish Yellow, Naples Yellow, Golden's Pyrrole Red, Golden's Prussian Blue and Holbein Luminous Opera.) 
My basic palette is shown above:
Mars Black
Titanium White
Yellow Ochre
Hansa Yellow Light
Burnt Umber
My go to red lately has been Pyrrole Red  
For traveling and use of ease (especially if you have problems with your hands and opening jars), I'd definitely choose the tubes. For stretching your dollar and quantity, I'd go with the jars as much as possible!
Remember, use a clean palette knife to take out what you need and don't put anything back into the jar (more on that in the mediums posts below.)
Where to find Utrecht Heavy Body Acrylics (in jars and tubes) via Utrecht
via Blick


Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Settling In

I shared back in April what my studio area looks like (I work from home.) Last night I realized that it was time to unpack and settle in. I emptied my journal bag completely today.

I've never done this before. I've always left my current collage materials in my bag ready to go. We are in this for the long haul so it's time to make my tools more accessible and get used to a new way of working and teaching. It's scary and I am far from finding my footing at the moment but I have to start somewhere. 

Thursday, August 06, 2020

Gorky and Miro Had a Baby and It's a Girl

I started by repurposing MDF wood panels (that I use as palettes) for my covers. I used handmade paper, tacky glue, waxed linen thread and bookbinding supplies to make the book.
White acrylic paint in thin layers.
This was actually supposed to be a tea cup (you can see it on the right panel) but I decided I didn't want it to be on the cover so I changed direction.
outline in pencil from a photo I took.

I thought I had more WIP photos after this shot but I don't (sorry.) I was originally going to add a second image on the right but started playing with the curved, loopy lines.

Supplies used:

100 lb Accent Opaque size 10 x 16" opened

Acrylics: Holbein, Sennelier, Utrecht and Golden

Water based paint markers: Holbein (acrylic inks), Sharpie, Molotow, Posca

Stabilo All in One water soluble pencils in black and yellow


Palette knife 



Thursday, July 30, 2020

Meet Me in Auvers Sur Oise: Cimetière d'Auvers-sur-Oise

I knew that this page would be a challenge for me. I didn't expect an eight day challenge (though watching hours of panels virtually at San Diego Comic Con took a big chunk of my time last weekend.)
 A sunflower outside of the Tourism Office.
Using pencil to draw the sunflower. I painted and layered the petals until finally I decided to see what happened if I just painted over my pencil lines. I liked the texture and the colors a lot.
I used a painting knife and tube acrylics (heavy body) for the flower. I didn't know what to expect but I kept playing with the layers and rotating the page with each application. At one point, I thought of painting the background over the yellow to form the petals but decided against it. I do like that idea, though, for future work.
One of my biggest challenges was trying to figure out how to paint the ivy bed over the brothers' graves. One day, it popped into my head: layers of different greens applied with a painting knife. The idea of the ivy bed...
The "ivy"
This has so many layers of different greens scraped and dragged with a painting knife.

Before David and I arrived in Auvers sur Oise, I knew that I wanted to start with the cemetery. We had an early start and after getting a map (at the Tourism Office), breakfast (farmer's market and the local bakery) and a yellow flower for each brother (farmer's market), we headed off to the cemetery. I had it in my head that I wanted to start at, "the end."
We trekked through the streets following the map. As we got closer, bicyclists began to whizz by. They were so close and so fast, that it was like something out of a cartoon.
We were walking where he walked.
We were standing where he painted.
The fields surrounded us.
There was so much to absorb.
A Van Gogh inspired vase... drawn with a water soluble pencil and then later on, painted over (as you'll see below.)

The fields.
The vase didn't work nor did the ivy. It was too much like Vincent, not enough me. It had to go.
I like the texture you can see through the darker greens painted on top here. I scratched into the paint using different painting tools. I later added marks with paint markers.
Using washi tape to try to keep the text straight. I didn't love my printing so I later added the cursive on top.
Using a Stabilo pencil in brown to outline the center bits. Smooshed with my finger.
It's getting there...
Adding my own writing always pushes it again in a different direction.
My photos from the cemetery.
The ivy is from Doctor Gachet's garden.
Theo originally was not buried with Vincent. Jo eventually had him moved so that the brothers could be together.
My finished page.

I've been wanting to work BIG for awhile now. Yet, after three pages of struggling, I just had a light bulb moment. While I've been itching to work big, for this project, it's just too big. I want this project to be more intimate. So, I may step back from this size and rework these pages again in a smaller format. I LOVE working 23 x 35 (I'd go bigger if I had space!) but not for this project that I've been wanting to do since June of last year. I want something I can carry around and with this, it's not possible.

Supplies used:

100 lb Accent Opaque size 23 x 35" opened (this is a journal I made that I'm working in)

Acrylics: Holbein, Sennelier, Utrecht and Golden

Water based paint markers: Holbein (acrylic inks), Sharpie, Molotow, Posca

Stabilo All in One water soluble pencils in black, brown and yellow

.35 Rapidosketch pen with black India ink

Palette knife 


Read various editions of the letters of Vincent Van Gogh 

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