Monday, December 31, 2012

FILM26: Zee End

X, Y and Z
Zounds!  An entire year has rolled by.  Its hard to believe that a little idea like using film photography and following the alphabet- a letter every two weeks, would be such a buoyant factor in my year.  I shared this journey of FILM26 with 5 very special women, all of whom are remarkable photographers.  I am grateful to them for the support and camaraderie through the year.  I know for a fact that I would never would had made it through on my own.  It goes to show the importance of a speaking and sharing goals out loud with others and following through with the support of friends.  The commitment we made to each other was held together with rolls of film and letter inspired photos. It was enough, it was plenty to see us all through the year.

A journey doesn't have to be alone, sometimes its better shared.  Sometimes, the act of just telling someone else what you want to do - dare I say... speaking your dreams, makes all the difference.  Its out there.  Its spoken... its out loud.   There's something about the spoken version of a dream, that makes it more tangible and more obtainable. 

The idea of working on the skill of seeing the world in a different light, and being able to tune-in on a more regular basis was the foundation for this project.  Seeing the world through a camera lens is a wonderful way to approach honing these skills.  Seeing the world through a film camera lens - even better.  With film, you have 24 frames to shoot.  Each is meaningful and must be framed, composed and really planned.  Its not like the digital cameras where the shots are endless and you can snap away in hopes of getting one good photo.  You have 24 tries with no immediate feedback.  You must pay attention to what you are doing. 

Me and Z

Me and Y
Me and X
I completed the year with 26 encaustic letter tiles, 26+ photos of me with the letter tiles and lots of 4x6 photo prints.  I won't be continuing this project into 2013.  I am happy with my take away and what I learned in 2012.   Its a nice feeling to know that in the end, I can say "mission accomplished" with a smile.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Travels, Progress and Happy New Year

I don't know how you feel about things, but 2012 whizzed by for me.  Its been a year full of wonders and progress.  Sometimes, we have no idea how far we have travelled, until we pause and take a look back.  I mean really look back to where it is that we started.  Look to the point where we took our first steps in the direction in which our hearts told us to go. 
This is my first wax portrait that I did.  And really, there weren't many before her regardless of medium.  I painted animals as a kid, not people, not portraits.  Yet, lately this past year there has been a compelling desire to learn to paint portraits.  No explanation, no reason - just got it in my head and had to go that way, that direction.  It was the same for me, when I just had to learn how to do encaustic painting.

encaustic and paper on birch
I honestly, have no idea where this road is taking me - nor do I really care.  All I know is this is the way I need to focus what I am doing right now.   I know I am on a ride, where I'm not exactly sure where the next stop lies, nor if its a long ways down this road, or perhaps I get on to something new tomorrow.  But, what I do know is that its right for the moment.  The road has taken a twist with the addition of oil paints.  But, I know, it will all come together some how, some way.

oil on paper
While, not every painting is perfect - the progress is forward even if in bits and pieces.  2012 has been this way for me.  Its been a piecing together of wonderful progress -  one painting, one face at a time.  And, I know it isn't just me - I've seen it in many other's work this year and its been fun to share your progress with you.  Thank you all for your support through 2012.  I am so looking forward to what 2013 has in store for all of us.  Wishing you all a very creative and Happy New Year!!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Breaks, Water Soluble Oil Paint and More Faces

This past week I've been working more with the water soluble oil paints. I'm figuring them out. I'm also getting a better feel for painting faces and the ability to see in terms of values. Taking the time to stop the norm for me and settle in to learning and studying is a great break and a beneficial one.
My break is coming to an end and Christmas is just around the corner. Wishing you all Happy Holidays to you and your families.
Have a Merry one!

Friday, December 14, 2012

New, Painting with Water Soluble Oil Paints, Values and Shapes

I've been playing with a new medium this week - water soluble oil paints.  At the same time, I am working on my skills - not just portraits, but what I am really working on is seeing values and painting shapes.  I'm beginning to see things differently.
You tube is a bonanza of painting information.  Tons of lessons there for whatever you want to learn in regard to painting and drawing.  I love the idea that there are artists in the world that are willing to share what they know.  
I'm liking these water soluble oils.  They are like butter.   Mind you, I haven't painted with regular oils, so I have no comparison.   Its totally new to me to be able to blend and mix colors on the paper.  It doesn't work that way in wax.  My first tendency is to not use enough paint.  For some reason that is difficult to use enough paint - why is that?  Its not like I don't have enough, yet I don't use enough.  I'm also learning that I must be more patient.  I tend to not be careful enough with my colors and mix a bit of mud.  I came back the second day on this one, which was good for her eye, but not for her nose..  Will share more next week!  Happy Friday

Friday, December 7, 2012

Faces in Wax, Trying New and Being a Beginner

Swimmer (detail)
encaustic on birch 12x24

Here's one of the complete swimmers from this post.  She is finally done.  I've been working on my getting the faces better - new colors, new thoughts.  That in itself takes time.  When I say that, what it really means is slowing down and taking the time in a more methodical way.  Its easy to put paint on a painting - but it takes thoughtfulness to put paint on a painting in a way that brings life straight from the brush to the surface on which you work.  It doesn't matter what the subject matter is - but I find there is a huge difference in the works where it seems as if the artist is one with the brush and each stroke is added lovingly to complete the picture. 
I'm going to be away from my wax studio for a couple of weeks.  Instead of just shutting down, like I have in the past, I'm actually going to embark on a new journey - even if for only a couple of weeks.  As, I said, I am going to work on my faces and practice while I am away.  I'm also, going to attempt a run at water soluble oil paints.  I'm really looking forward to it... going in with a little apprehension, in that as much fun as it is to be a beginner, its not fun either.  I figured the more practice I get in mixing colors and painting faces - the better.  If any of you have great tips and tricks for working with water soluble oil paints - do share, really.  I need all the help I can get.  I'll be here next week and show you what I've been up to.  Paint on!

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