I previously wrote instructions on how to paint on wax paper which is a sort of like faking reverse glass painting. I repeated the prior project on wood scraps (above) and the results were much better because I put in a detailed background and used a new media. The outlines in the original version were Sharpie marker, which I now avoid because the ink is unstable. A fine black Molotow acrylic paint pen was used in the new art above, and it worked very well!
I compared the Molotow acrylic paint pen to the Liquitex brand. The flow of the paint was better and the nib more precise on the Molotow brand. If any lines were too thin or not solid enough, I let the paint dry and redrew the section of line that I needed to repair. Wax paper gets soft when wet and can wrinkle then tear if it gets too wet, so it helps to work with very dry paint. This time I also skipped the step of crumpling the wax paper for a more aged look. Wrinkles occur naturally but I did not add to them and make the art look more distressed in either piece shown here.
The artwork below I placed the wax paper painting over a collage for added depth. A process I have yet to try would be to do multiple layers of painted wax paper, maybe even with collage elements between the layers in addition to the paint. The trapeze artist mixed media art started as a collage on particle board (recycled food packaging box like, a cereal box). I did have to press the dry artwork for a few days to flatten it nicely. Since Modge Podge or other decoupage glue is very wet, the substrate you work one has to be very solid and not warp if it gets wet.
Here is a round up of some recent ATCs. It’s especially fun to paint water using watercolor. Some of these are already traded through ATCsForAll.com which is a really good site. I have been splitting my time between pen and ink and some painted pen and ink drawings. I love getting a trade in the mail!
My mail art friend Sherry Harmes of Amook Island Creations in Alaska was sad to report that this mail art envelope I sent to her was delivered drenched in water. The long postal journey is part of the risk of sending art through the mail. The watercolour painting inside was well protected by plastic wrap and tape. I sent her an email and advised she try to iron the envelope because many times art on paper can be smoothed out with a clothing iron. Truth is, I iron way more art than clothes…
Here are a few shots from a lecture with live animals at Emily Oak Nature Center, Skokie Park District. I like doing these events because it gives me a chance to take and share reference shots for art. A rescue, conservation and education group, Big Run Wolf Ranch, brought two wolves, a coyote, a porcupine, groundhog and. The one who stole the show was the skunk. Skunks are adorable! They have soft, silky fur, the sweetest faces and are not stinky at all if they have been de-scented properly.
In September 2014, I went to a lecture given by Northern Illinois Raptor Rehab & Education at Emily Oaks Nature Center, Skokie Park District. This a wonderful group that helps injured birds, cares for birds that cannot return the the wild and participates in breeding programs for at-risk species. Part of their mission is educating the public about the value of raptors to the environment. The lecture was a joy because I got tons of great photos of live owls up close.
I love having a good reference photo to draw or paint from. You can get high resolution owl photo downloads from this event from my morgueFile account here. There are nice close up shots of a Great Horned Owl (above), Saw Whet Owls, a Barn Owl and a lovely Barred Owl.Scroll through the various images to find them; for some reason items in “most recent images” are not coming up in chronological order.
I went hiking late September which was a good time to try out some aperture priority shots in the woods. These shots are from Marengo Ridge in McHenry County, Illinois. I ran into a patch of poison ivy going after one shot but thankfully did not get infected by it. It’s pretty inconsiderate of nature preserves to also preserve poison ivy. I won’t complain if that goes extinct and please do not tell me if it has a purpose in the larger biosphere.