Normally I'm lucky to get a couple of hours in the studio on most days, but I've been so glad of NAEDM this week. I know I wouldn't have created anything all week otherwise, whereas it has made me snatch the off half hour or hour, and given me some relaxation.
Fortunately I managed to find an hour late in the morning for a doggerel doodle while Dev went back to bed for a snooze, and Bertie Birdsong came powering in to cheer me up as I painted him.
HE'S NO WATERFOWL, BUT HE IS A DEDICATED AQUATIC ATHLETE
Bert's a swimmer, full of vigour,
But even fuller in his figure.
He swims each day, this avian swimmer
But still his tummy gets no slimmer.
In shorts and goggles he's quite dashing
When he swims backstroke - with lots of splashing.
He feels his efforts in the water
Should make him slim - well it really ought-ter.
When Bertie leaves the briny sea
He'll have a nice hot cup of tea,
And several choccy bikkies too.
-Well I would anyway, wouldn't you!
Dev feeling more unwell, and once again I managed to snatch an hour while he returned to bed in the afternoon. I wanted to try out my new Gelli plate, which arrived last week. I've resisted the lure of a Gelli plate for a long time, but decided that I might be able to use it in a way that suits me and allows me to experiment.
These are my first attempts at using the Gelli plate. I printed only about ten pieces and these were the ones that I felt acceptable. They are all printed on fabric, in the hope that I can work on them with stitching and drawing when I have more time.
The print above was printed on a piece of fabric I prepared last week, with strips of fabric glued to a sheet of paper and painted with watercolours.
Looks a bit of a blotchy mess, but some day I want to stitch around the vague figure shape I see.
This was the second print of the same piece, which I've cropped in a bit too much. Before taking this print I had pressed a crinkly sheet of packing plastic over the acrylic paint left on the plate. I liked this one better and could see more possibilities in it.
The inspiration for this print, and the idea of sticking strips of fabric to paper came from a gorgeous book I downloaded on to my Kindle - "Mixed Media Master Class with Sherrill Kahn". I would have preferred the print version, but for some reason only the Kindle version was available at just under £6. I've been reading it by dipping in and out on my I-Pad in my coffee breaks and finding it easy to follow and jump from to place. Very inspirational, and although only a page or two was devoted to the Gelli Plate it was enough to give me the push to buy one.
I like this bright print, and definitely see ways of developing it with stitching, hand and machine, and adding things like beads and buttons. At this point Dev was very unwell and I had to dash him back to the hospital. Just had time to clean the Gelli plate and everything else was left. He was given an antibiotic to clear things up.
The hospital antibiotic gave Dev an allergic reaction later in the day, which most antibiotics do, and fortunately I managed to speak to our doctor who gave me a prescription for a different one just 5 minutes before the surgery closed. I dashed in to town to the supermarket pharmacy who fortunately had it in stock.
|Untitled - Jez|
A3 Watercolour paper and acrylic paints
Terrible day for photographing and the page is too big for the scanner, so it's difficult to see the pencil lines I added. Today I painted a first layer of green to the dragony figure on the left, drew the bird at the top with pencil, added a few touches of colour to the teeny-tiny figures, and drew and started colouring the big fish on the left and the three little fish near the smaller dragon on the right. This is how I work with these paintings, very unsystematically. Pleased to have snatched just enough time to add those few touches.
Managed a couple of hours while Dev was resting and snoozing in bed again, determined to get better as quickly as possible.
My creativity was at a bit of a low, so I picked up this fabric print I made on Sunday and added detailing with a white pen and a copper-coloured pen. Not my usual style, but that's what experimenting is all about.
I didn't want to use the fabric print from Sunday's printing session, so I photocopied it onto cream card and drew a rough sketch on that. The figure showed up so clearly on the second pull of the print, even though it was the result of randomly splotched paint. You may be able to see that I carried the strap of the eye-patch across the girl's hair, then crossed it out because it should have gone under her hair.
I don't do a lot of adding text but something made me pick up my Mary Oliver poetry book and pick out two disconnected lines from a poem called 'Wild Geese', which seemed to fit the image:
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination.
(The despair is definitely the eye-patch girl's - not mine. I try always to live in hope.)
I've been pleasantly surprised as how speedy it is to get out the Gelli plate and equipment required, take a few prints and put it all away again, with very little cleaning up to do.
These 3 prints (all I did) are my second attempt, trying the kind of approach I want to take with it.
I wanted to produce a mono print. I cut out a mask shape inspired by a magazine advertisement and printed over it, learning as I went. After this point I cut pieces of wavy card to put at the sides and added more blue paint. I can see lines that show I was pressing too heavily on the brayer.
When I took the mask of the figure off I realised the paper was too thin and it tore off in short pieces. Very difficult. Note to self: use card next time.
Yes, the figure came out all right, but then I realised I should have started by rolling one or more light colours so that the figure was coloured. Should have thought that one through.
Print of two giddy girls. This time I stapled two pieces of card together and freehand cut both figures out in one go, then remembered to put the blue paint on before adding the masks. All very simple, but I can see where I am going.
Persuaded Dev to bed in the afternoon although he insisted he wouldn't sleep. Two hot water bottles, a pillow behind his back, and an hour and a quarter later he woke up, feeling much better!
|'Cockerel' - Jez|
Inktense pencils and various other brands of coloured pencil
Last week I drew and pre-painted the background for this cockerel with Inktense pencils to provide a base. This is the finished bird, using any of my several sets of coloured pencils that provided near enough the colour I wanted. How many boxes of coloured pencil does any one person need!
As many of you find, scanning a picture into the computer never seems to get the colours right. The colours of my cockerel are not true to the drawing, and the texture doesn't show very clearly but it's a really grey day and there was no option.
I really enjoyed doing this, it was a great relaxer, and it came together very quickly.
|'Vase' - Jez|
Black and red pens with collaged vase
Out come the pens, black and red. I drew the outline for the vase then added the 'flowers'. When I came to complete the vase my mind took a sideways step, and instead of adding a design with the pens I thought it would be good to add it as a collage.
When I was Gelli printing earlier this week I used a few scraps of fabric as rags to wipe up excess paint. I photocopied them onto cartridge paper and chose a section to collage on for the vase. I love the way it shows the texture as well as the colour, and will use this technique again. All done very quickly and enjoyably.
As far as creating art is concerned this has been a satisfactory week in spite of life's problems because I would have done nothing without AEDM.
Yes, I know it's not Saturday yet, but there are no rules in NAEDM, and I didn't want to do a post tomorrow with just Saturday's creation. So here, for Saturday's piece, is a quick sketch I decided not to include last week.
Linking with November Art Every Day Month, Paint Party Friday and Manon's Paper Saturdays and Try it on Tuesday