White on White Aspen Collage

The last bit of homework is done. Now I have to collect everything together in a great big pile and get ready to go back to class. It will probably take me all afternoon to finish that task. I’m always afraid that I will leave something I need at home. Thus I take the entire studio with me 🙂

This is a sketch of the aspen tree I have been studying in the spring. The leaves are just starting to grow bigger and it still has its little seed pod thingees. I am not sure what these are called. The assignment was a white on white collage.

Here’s what I came up with. Enlarge the photo to see it better. White on white is definitely subtle.

Here’s a bit closer view. I used a variety of Japanese rice papers to create the tree. I hope you have a great weekend and I will post again once I return from class.


Back to Trees

If you know me, this shouldn’t surprise you. I finished most of my homework and now I am creating more pieces in my favorite category, trees. The instructions are to work any other ideas, don’t let the outline limit you and add to it freely. So that’s what I’m doing. I wanted to try another collage with the acrylic skins. I was thinking of doing a pheasant but then I looked at one of the skins and saw a tree. So a tree it became.

This is the tree after I cut it out. I used a grey and green skin that had a tree trunk shape and one branch that I saw from the paint pouring. I cut those out and then added roots and more branches. It looked OK but it definitely needed some darker values in the tree. So I decided to add more paint. I glued it down first and then added paint on top.

This is after adding some darker paint for more contrast. Now that I am looking at it on the computer, I am wondering if I need to change the background color slightly at the bottom to make the tree feel more grounded. It kind of seems like it’s floating. What do you think?

Then I decided to use one of my sketches of an aspen branch. I enlarged the design on the copier and then cut out a branch from purple paper. The skin I was going to use was green and purple so I thought a purple branch would be perfect. From a distance, it doesn’t even look purple now. Sorry for the quality of the photos, it’s getting really dark here early in the afternoon and this branch was really hard to photograph.

Here’s a slightly closer view. This one took a long time cutting out and pasting down all the leaf bits and the branch. But I really like the result. I am also learning what works for gluing down the skins and what causes them to bubble up.

And I finally finished a notebook cover I had been working on for over a month now. It has probably 8-10 layers of paint and then a transfer of the leaves from a laser copy.

I filled the notebook cover with a range of value painted paper from yellow to red violet. I’m sure that it won’t stay that way but I needed some paper in the notebook cover. The insides and back of the covers are painted too. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great weekend.


Columbia River Redband Trout

My friend Deb and I did some more paint pouring last weekend. I made a bunch of acrylic skins but then, what to do with them? I had one that I thought looked like a fish. So I looked up fish native to Montana and chose one to create out of acrylic skins.

Here’s a very poor photo of a sketch I made to get the shape and where the colors belonged.

Here are the two skins that I used to create the fish. I definitely see a fish in the one on the left. That’s where the idea came from. I wish I had made a few more fish colors now.

Here he is on white. I really like how he turned out. Now to decide on a background.


These are some painted papers that I already have. Which one do you like? I haven’t decided yet. I might try to pour a painted background for him. If so, I’ll need to get the right size canvas or board to pour on. If I use the paper, I think I might use a layer of pouring medium or glazing liquid on the paper to make it a little shinier. Not sure I like the contrast of the matte paper against the really shiny fish. Now what to do with 20 other acrylic skins in odd color shades?

Paint Pouring

My friend Deb and I tried some paint pouring last weekend. If you look on YouTube, there are a bunch of paintings about paint pouring. Basically, you mix paint with a pouring medium and silicone. Then you pour different colors together and spread them on a canvas. We were trying to achieve the same effect on paper.

This is one of the better efforts on paper. It really didn’t work very well at all. We tried different “recipes” and still with limited success. So we thought we would try it on a canvas (the way it is supposed to be done).

And this is what we got! It’s amazing. The “cells” were bigger when it was first poured but they tend to shrink down. And there were many colors in this pour so it’s surprising how blue green it feels overall.

Here’s a close up. It is a really fun process although it seems to waste a ton of paint. We are going to try some different pouring mediums this weekend which are less expensive and instead of pouring on to paper, we are going to create acrylic skins. Basically, that is a sheet of dry acrylic paint. So we’ll be pouring on plastic, letting it dry and then peeling it off. Hopefully, our results will overall be better this time.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you have a good weekend.


A Couple More Samples

I have been working on these leaves for several weeks now. They involved multiple layers of paint and acrylic mediums.

I used the shapes of real leaves to create these. They are about the thickness of leaves and almost feel like real leaves when they are fresh. If you look closely at the photo on the right, you will see I started with newspaper.

Here’s another rock study. I had a really hard time taking a photo of this. It has multiple layers of paint, acrylic media and then colored pencil. The camera couldn’t seem to focus on it at all. Weird. I had hoped to get a lot more done today but we were dealing with snow!

We got nearly 8 inches of snow in the last 24 hours. We usually have snow starting in late November, this is a bit early for a big dump like this. And we’re expecting it to keep snowing until Monday. Anyone want to come help shovel?