Grey Toned Journals

Stillman & Birn Nova Series

I had a chance to try out the grey-toned Nova Series paper by Stillman & Birn this past weekend. I tried using various materials, including: water soluble oil pastels, grease pencils, regular graphite, colored pencil, gouache and acrylic paints.

I liked the way the paper handled all the materials, and the colors contrast nicely with the grey background. So far, nothing has bled through to the other side!

Friday in my art studio

Painting and staying warm

I know that I have nothing to really complain about when it comes to cold weather, but seriously, this cold snap in the south is getting old. The little space heater in my Florida home art studio is helping me cope. I just keep thinking about our brutal summer temps and 5K training in the heat last year, and I think I’d rather be sweating than freezing. Yes, I’ll take the heat. I’m no longer a New York winter girl. Waiting for the warm up–come on Florida!

Here are some photos of the things happening in the studio this week! I’ve finished submitting my paintings for a competition (more about that later), and I’ve started some small works (5×5 inch) mixed media studies on canvas paper. It’s so much fun to work in the square format–and working small allows me try new things and experiment for larger pieces.

Have a wonderful Friday everyone!

Contemporary Charcoal Drawing Video

The beginning of a contemporary abstract painting…

Yesterday I was reorganizing the studio, going out to look at art supplies, and generally not painting anything at all. Some days you just can’t force the process–even with a painting deadline on the horizon. An artist learns to trust that ideas will happen only when the time is right…

But this morning the muse “magic” that totally defies logic kicked in at 5:30 am. Yes, creativity demanded attention–before coffee–before I felt even half-way human; yet, who am I to argue the time of day that inspiration decides to appear?

I figured if I could get this charcoal drawing idea out of the brain and on to my paper, then I could happily stumble to the kitchen and fix myself a cup of morning coffee.

So it happened. And the coffee was good. And the day will be filled with painting.


Second contemporary painting in the Sea Glass series

I finished up this second mixed media contemporary abstract this morning. My current inspiration comes from tide pools and sea glass.

These are artworks on paper using various materials, including acrylics, crayons and pencil. Each piece features colors of the sea and unique, linear abstract drawn motifs.

Living in Florida provides ocean inspiration and an appreciation for seaside hues.


Contemporary mixed media series

Abstract Seaside Treasures

Happy New Year everyone!

I am really excited about 2018, because I’m focusing on creating larger, contemporary works in addition to the mini paintings and smaller works that I have been doing for several years now.

This is one of the new mixed media contemporary abstracts created with acrylics, crayons, and pencil on heavy paper (14 x 11 inches) using bold colors and floating, linear imagery. It is the first painting in my Tide Pool and Sea Glass theme this quarter. The loose, layered style is one of my favorite methods of developing a painting. Each layer works together to give the viewer both color and linear movement experiences.


Printmaking fun!

Creating abstract fun with a Gelliplate

I recently bought a smaller sized 5×5 inch square Gelliplate for abstract and nature printmaking projects. I found this size perfect for my Hobonichi journal. It’s a fun and relaxing way to collect ephemera for future art journal projects.

I usually like to use nature samples for my imprints, like leaves and ferns, but here I cut out my own stencils from file folder cardstock. Part of the fun is learning to enjoy the happy surprises that you end up with, even if you do get a few “not so great” prints along the way. In the end, it’s all about having fun in the process–re-visiting your child-like experience with art.

One Hundred Days on Instagram

On Instagram I am participating in #The100dayproject. The goal is to pick any activity and do that one activity for a consecutive 100 day cycle. I picked “mark making” as my activity since the idea of mark making seemed to be filled with possibilities for experimentation. My first 8 days have been an exploration of marks made with a Derwent charcoal pencil on Strathmore drawing paper that I folded into a small booklet.

While I began this mark making journey using charcoal, I may in fact introduce other media over the course of the project. As an artist, I already make art every day, so the real exercise for me was to introduce an element of play and imagination with the added bonus of participating in the 100 day commitment with other friends on Instagram. Having a small booklet designated for these sketches enhances the look of the collection, and I will no doubt create a small leather cover (like a traveler’s notebook system) to display my homemade booklets upon completion.

If you are participating in the 100 day challenge on Instagram, please leave a comment below and share what activity you have selected. I would like to make sure that I seek out your individual feed and enjoy your 100 day journey.