Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Experimental Mixed- Media Techniques: Part Two

When it comes to invention and experimentation, I believe the act of play holds an integral part in the creative process. Without set intention, just create, focusing on the journey not the destination. When you begin to play, you open the door for discovery to enter. I’d like to share with you some fun and playful techniques that I have discovered.


Handmade paper embedded with natural fibers is primed with gesso and washes of Burnt Sienna and copper acrylic are applied on top. The raised surface is wiped with a cloth to reveal a tactile environment. Creating your own handmade paper is a terrific way to establish a distinctive, collage-based environment.


Corrugated cardboard is adorned with pearlescent acrylics and dripped with latex paint. The raised paper surface provides an eye-catching element for any two-dimensional surface.


Debossed wallpaper is imprinted using leaves and acrylic paints. You can also emboss and deboss your own paper using a template and a stylus.


Die-cut and embossed paper is treated with silver acrylic and adhered to a painted surface. Brown ink is applied on top while the surface is sprayed with a water bottle. The ink puddles and begins to drip while the excess is removed with a paper towel for a weathered appearance. There are many techniques available when it comes to aging and distressing collage and assemblage accents.


Gold and copper acrylic is sponged on top of a black base using a large sponge with irregular holes. Explore both natural and man-made sponges to get a variety of imprints.


Heavy-duty aluminum foil is crinkled and manipulated to create an overall embossed texture. Black ink is applied to the surface and wiped away to create an interesting patina. Do not use nonstick aluminum foil, as it will not work. Regular foil does the trick just fine.

For more demonstrations on making unique surfaces and creating custom papers, check out my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books).

I look forward to hearing from you and seeing what you have unearthed in your journey of experimentation and exploration!

copyright 2015 Lisa L. Cyr, Cyr Studio LLC

Thursday, February 26, 2015

"Paint Pictures with Words" Journal Series

The Paint Pictures with Words Journal Series  are 6" x 9" hardcover journals with wraparound fantasy-inspired imagery by artist and author Lisa L. Cyr. The 120-page books are perfect bound and printed on cream uncoated 50lb paper. Painted textures throughout the journals serve as inspirational backgrounds from which to write on the lined interior pages. Let these journals inspire you to "Paint Pictures with Words!"  $19.95 US

Meditative Pathways
Journal
The Night Fury
Journal
Between the Worlds
Journal
The Courageous
Journal
Self Awareness
Journal

Experimental Mixed-Media Techniques: Part One

When it comes to invention and experimentation, I believe the act of play holds an integral part in the creative process. Without set intention, just create, focusing on the journey not the destination. When you begin to play, you open the door for discovery to enter. I’d like to share with you some fun and playful techniques that I have discovered.


Tracing paper is spattered with purple acrylic paint, crinkled and dry brushed with metallic silver acrylic. Creating custom collage papers is a great way to infuse a signature look into your work.


A painted background is imprinted with a sprig coated with embossing ink. The wet ink is covered with embossing powder and a heating element is employed to raise the gold surface. Raised surfaces provide an intriguing tactile environment.


Synthetic mesh is dripped with liquid acrylic and sponged with gold. Utilizing alternative materials in your work will create intrigue


Self-leveling clear gel, liquid acrylic and metallic interference paints are swirled with a sharpened stick, then left to harden in a flat mold and later removed. You can also embed the clear gel with low relief add-ons for additional effects.


Acrylic paint is dropped into matte gel medium and marbled with a wide-tooth comb. You can also use a sharpened wooden stick to draw into the surface, creating a unique design.


Facial tissue is folded, manipulated and adhered to a surface using acrylic matte medium. Washes of acrylic paint are applied on top. Tissue paper and paper towels can also be used to create a similar texture.

For more demonstrations on making unique surfaces and creating custom papers, check out my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books).

I look forward to hearing from you and seeing what you have unearthed in your journey of experimentation and exploration!

copyright 2015 Lisa L. Cyr, Cyr Studio LLC

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Inside the Studio!

In preparation for a large series of paintings, I like to go on a cleaning spree, going through my entire studio. I purged the things that I no longer use, need or want to do. It is quite liberating! I found things that I had forgotten about and was able to restructure and reorganize so that I have a better system in place.


I am in the midst of redesigning the studio, again! But, this time it will be a slow work-in-process. I just painted my art table drawers and sponged them. I could not get the dark stains out when I was cleaning, so I went with it...now they are black with gold patina!

In addition to the studio cleanup and makeover, I have also begun to contemplate a new direction for my work, developing ideas about where I would like to go in the years to come. It is very important every year to think  about your work as a whole and the direction it is moving.  I have lots of new products being launched and other ideas in the works so stay tuned!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Making Custom-Treated Paper


Often at the end of a long painting day, I have left over acrylic paint on my palette. I really hate to throw it out or try and save it, especially if there is really no special mixture that I will need the next day. So, I often use the leftover paint to make custom-treated papers.


The paper sample that you see in the detailed picture uses tracing paper that has been crinkled, laid flat and painted with washes of acrylic paint, using a spray bottle with water to mix the colors. I dry everything with a hairdryer and then dry-brush Gold paint on top. Now, I have no paint to throw out and a custom paper to use later on! For a step-by-step demonstration on making handmade paper, check out my book Art Revolution. For creating custom papers, check out a great demonstration from my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books).


Monday, February 16, 2015

Create an Inspiration Board!

Your artistic environment plays a role in your creative process. A studio that has an ongoing means for stimulating thought is much more conducive for producing creative momentum. One way to make an impact on your creative output is to restructure the environment in which you work.

Create an inspiration board or wall to post uplifting quotes, photos and artwork from contemporary and historic artists that influence your work. Every time that you look at your inspiration board, you will see something that uplifts your spirit and your creativity.

In my studio, I am constantly posting new things up to look at. Everywhere I go, I find something inspirational and include it on my inspiration board as well as the wall of the studio. Featured here is an inspiration board I made out of layered, carved and debossed foam. For a step-by-step demonstration on how to make this project, check out my book Experimental Painting.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

ONLINE WORKSHOPS!


MIXED MEDIA MASTERCLASS
This online month-to-month workshop is for intermediate and advanced artists that are looking to refine their skills to produce professional works for the fine or commercial art marketplace. Artists will work on their own self-generated projects at a pace they feel comfortable with. In addition to weekly assistance with portfolio development, the class will cover a variety of topics from professional business practices, promotional strategies, merchandising, social media and public relations to studio practices, experimental and traditional painting techniques and an exciting multitude of artistic inspirational resources. Artists can choose to work on works of art, start a website, develop an identity package, set up a social media presence, create a video of their work, develop a merchandise line, or a combination of art and business etc. It is up to each artist how they want to use their class time. Discussions regarding personal outlook, growth and development will also help each artist to explore and expand upon their own creative process as well as establish successful business goals for the long term.

Since the workshop will be run as a monthly online course, I have set-up a private resource blog to serve as the interactive platform for the class. It will have articles, videos, downloads and links that will act as valuable supplementation to the class critiques. I will be in the classroom Monday through Friday reviewing in-process and finished works. Take this as an opportunity to do something really extraordinary, making an impact on your career for years to come!

Start Date: April 6 to May 1 2015 (session one)

Course Length: month to month
Tuition: $180.00 - 4 weeks
3 months (12 weeks) $510 (save $30.00)


EXPERIMENTAL FIGURE PAINTING IN MIXED MEDIA: The Mythical Realm
The mythical figure has inspired artists for centuries. Let it inspire you too! This highly informative online workshop will explore experimental approaches to painting the mythical figure in thematic fantastical settings, using both two-dimensional and three-dimensional mixed-media techniques. Topics will include drawing and painting the fantastical figure, altering and restructure facial features and body proportions to create believable characters as well as painting magical landscapes and environments using mixed-media techniques.

All assignments will encourage in-depth research and exploration into a multitude of mythological, cultural and historical sources. Egyptian, Greek and Roman, Celtic, Norse, East Asian, African and Native American mythology, legends, fairy tales and folklore are just some of the areas of prospective interest. Artists are also encouraged to develop their own mythological stories to illustrate. We will focus on the creation of message-driven art through the use of symbolism, metaphor and allegory as well as anagrams, visual puzzles and hidden messages. The use of storyboarding for narrative works in series whether for a gallery wall, book layout, video presentation or online experience will also be discussed. Other topics will include the use of costuming, decorative motifs and ornamentation, cultural iconography and architectural detail in works of the mythical realm.

With visually inspiring imagery, insightful readings, thought-provoking videos, creative exercises and step-by-step demonstrations, artists will discover a plethora of exciting two-dimensional and three-dimensional techniques to employ in their own fantastical works. This online workshop is for intermediate and advanced figurative artists who are interested in using mixed-media techniques to add that magical, transforming element to their work!

The workshop will be run as a six-week online class. I have set-up a private resource blog to serve as the interactive platform for the class. It will have articles, videos, downloads and links that will act as valuable supplementation to the class critiques. I will be in the classroom Monday through Friday reviewing in-process and finished works.

Start Date: March 23 to May 1, 2015 
Course Length: 6 weeks
Tuition: $300.00


EXPERIMENTAL FIGURE PAINTING IN MIXED MEDIA
This highly informative online workshop will explore experimental approaches to figure painting in thematic settings using a mixed-media approach. Both two-dimensional and three-dimensional techniques will be covered, including employing alternative working surfaces, transparent and opaque painting techniques, texturing the surface with additive and subtractive processes, building the visual architecture, working in bas-relief and utilizing innovative mixed-media techniques to create intriguing effects. In addition, ideation and conceptual development strategies will be covered, including developing personal content through journalism, research and reference gathering techniques, utilizing an inspiration wall and producing value and color studies. To assist artists in their own creative path, topics on nurturing the creative spirit within, embracing a multidisciplinary mindset and creating message-driven art will also be covered. This class is for intermediate and advanced figurative artists who are interested in using mixed-media techniques to enhance their work!

The workshop will be run as a six-week online workshop. I have set-up a private resource blog to serve as the interactive platform for the class. It will have articles, videos, downloads and links that will act as valuable supplementation to the class critiques. I will be in the classroom Monday through Friday reviewing in-process and finished works.

Start Date: March 23 to May 1, 2015 
Course Length: 6 weeks
Tuition: $300.00