Sunday, February 27, 2022

Absorbent Ground with Resists

Here is a little experiment I did with Golden Absorbent Ground and various Golden mediums used as resists. 

I applied two coats of Golden Absorbent Ground to a sheet of Bristol, and, after the surface was completely dry I applied stripes of Clear Leveling Gel, Color Pouring Medium, High Flow Medium, and Super Matte Medium to see how they would work as resists under various types of paint: watercolor, fluid acrylic, High Flow acrylic, and Heavy Body Acrylic.


You can find information on all of these products on the Golden website, and purchase them at Blick or your favorite art supply retailer. Here are links to the Absorbent Ground; Clear Leveling Gel; High Flow Medium; Color Pouring Medium; and Super Matte Medium.

The vertical stripes are the mediums used as resists. The horizontal yellow stripes are the paints I applied over them. I hope you find this information helpful. Trying out new materials can be a way to get out of a rut or reinvigorate your art practice. Thanks for visiting!

Saturday, February 12, 2022

Mashing Up, or Carefully Juxtaposing

 As a counterpoint to my more-or-less orderly stripe paintings, I like to mash things together in my works on paper. These are 11"x14" on Bristol, and they include collage, drawing, and painting.

I also love to cut up gelli plate prints, made with Golden OPEN acrylics, and put those parts together in ways that surprise me:

You can win a set of Golden OPEN acrylics, an 8"x10" GelliArts Gel Plate, and a 6" Speedball soft rubber brayer in this month's raffle. CLICK HERE TO BUY RAFFLE TICKETS.

Monday, February 7, 2022

Art Basics - Playing with Arylic Paints in a Sketchbook

In an attempt to reach out to beginner painters, I've been exploring student-grade paints. Some teachers highly recommend that the beginner start with the best of paints, such as Golden. And that probably is good advice for some. However, I have seen many people afraid to explore freely because of the cost of the material. It's easy to feel intimidated by high quality paint, as if your image must be worthy of such fine material. 


I feel it's important to get the paint that suits you and your budget. If an expensive set of high quality paints is going to sit on the shelf untouched because of fear, then get something more affordable. Student grade paints do not have the same pigment load as professional paints. That is a given. They also have different consistencies, brand to brand. The only way to really know what is right for you is to try a few different brands and qualities of paint.

My advice to beginner painters who are not ready to spring for high-quality paints is this: start with a set of student grade paints (not craft paints), and gradually add your professional quality paints (Golden being my preferred, Holbein, Sennelier are some I've used as well) as needed. One tube or bottle at a time. grow into your good paints as your art practice develops.

Supplies I am using in this video are:

Strathmore sketchbook, hardbound, spiral bound. You can see some commentary on sketchbook options in this video.

Blick Matte Acrylic White, Galeria Acrylic Paint, Liquitex Basics, Arteza premium acrylic paint

Disposable Palette

Palette Knife; I like this square-ended one, but I suggest you try a few different shapes. Mine is the small #7, Liquitex Freestyle Painting Knife.

Your eyes and your hands are your most important tools. Enjoy!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Survey Results

 I asked you a few weeks ago about your art practice. How does art fit into your life? And what is your main medium. Here are the results from that survey:

For the great majority of responders, art is a major component of their lives. It's either a profession, a serious hobby, or they describe it as a passion. The lines between these categories are pretty blurred. For many of you, art is a passion and a profession, or a passion and a serious hobby. Some took issue with the term "hobby", which was not unexpected. "Hobby" tends to suggest 'not serious' to some. Art for relaxation and self-care was a significant component for some of you. Here are a few quotes from those who checked "other":
"I want to make some kind of art and every once in a while I try, but I don’t know where to start. I have watched lots of videos and bought tons of classes, but feel unhappy and dissatisfied with everything that I do."

"I love printmaking and collage but I'm a beginner and am always frustrated with what I create, which makes me want to do it less, so I sabotage myself by always finding other things to do, like household chores. I"m trying hard to overcome this block."

"It is like breathing to me, necessary to my life and wellbeing. It keeps me connected with all of life self-healing wholeness."

 The second question, about your primary medium, had a big hole in the multiple choice options. I forgot to include watercolor!! Duh.

Not surprisingly, the greatest segment of responders work in acrylic and collage, same as me. The vast majority of "other"responses, again not surprisingly, said watercolor was their main medium.

A couple of quotes from 'other' responders:

"I am a ceramicist and create underglaze abstract “paintings” on my slab-built vessels. I explored 2-D through clay monoprinting, which led to acrylic painting. I now work in the two mediums — clay and acrylic — in a complementary fashion."

"Watermedia: tempera gouache watercolor Materials that are plastic free and eco friendly"

In addition to these, we got: artist's books, polymer clay, mosaic, soft pastels (another medium I should have included in my list), repurposed house paint, found materials, and a few other painting/drawing media such as ink, crayon, and so forth. 

Here is February's survey. This one asks about your workshop preferences and your advice for beginners. I will share results at the beginning of March. THANKS for participating!