Saturday, January 24, 2015

My Journals and Sketchbooks!

A new book called Art Journal Kickstarter (North Light Books) just came out and  features work from my journals and those of many other mixed-media artists!

"With back-to-back journal pages from almost 100 artists, you’ll embark on an exploration filled with top-notch techniques and the kind of journal fodder that your artistic soul has been craving! So soak it up and discover the stories behind each artist’s personal pages."  - Kristy Conlin

My sketchbook work, on the other hand, is featured in a book called Sketchbook Confidential 2 (North Light Books). Check out my figure study on the cover!

"In Sketchbook Confidential 2 you'll hear from more than 41 masterful artists. Great for art students, teachters, aspiring artists and art aficionados alike this book is a trusted reference for those looking to create and live a more artistic life. Hear about how these artists approach drawing & sketching whether it's their favorite medium or a stepping stone to their final results."  - Pam Wissman

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Type and Image Transfers!

When it comes to utilizing your own typography or sketches in your art, direct or indirect transfers can be very effective. You will need to design your typography on the computer or scan in your sketch, reverse the type or image, print it out using an inkjet printer, preferably one that uses pigment-based inks, onto white bond paper. You can also use a xerography machine. Next, use acrylic matte gel medium directly onto the print surface, making sure not to cover the entire sheet of paper. I use an Epson 3800 inkjet printer with pigment-based inks onto bond paper or double-sided matte paper.

Then place the reverse image, with acrylic matte gel medium on it, face down onto the textured surface. It takes about an hour to set, humidity depending, and then you will be able to lift the paper off. Let it dry overnight. The next day, spray water onto the transfer surface and lift the remaining paper (which looks like tissue ) off with your finger. I like to use a clean rubber cement pickup eraser to do the job. When the excess paper is fully removed, the ink part of the image will be the only thing that remains.

In addition, to apply typography to a surface you can use press type. Letraset used to make it for graphic designers back in the day. To apply the type, all you need to do is burnish it on and then seal it with acrylic matte medium. Here is an article using image transfers and collage on clay bord (Claybord) panel by artist Dana Brown from Amersand Art Supply.

Here is a video from Golden Artist Colors to watch, if you are interested in in direct image transfers:

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Sketchbooks and Journals!

Check out just a sampling of the beautiful sketchbooks and journals that are being created in my online workshop Creative Explorations in Mixed Media:2D, 3D & Beyond!

Lolly Owens Journal (front and back)
"The journal is 8" x 8" with 3.75" extensions on both sides that fold back when closing the journal. My theme is the dance between hope, doubt and the trust that occurs when you follow your heart through life's changes."

Susan Schraft Sketchbook Covers
"I work abstract and use a lot of surface texture in my pieces. The first cover is created with acrylic, handmade papers, stencils and spackle. The other is created with acrylics, papers, stencils, press-on lettering and magazine clippings."

Darla Waller Sketchbook: Pop:25
"I wanted things to pop from the cover so I tried to play with the word pop."

Using Cradled Panels!

As many of you know, I love to use cradled panels. In particular, I have been using the gesso (Gessobord) and clay board (Claybord) panels from Ampersand Art Supply. Shown is a picture of two custom (Claybord) panels created by Ampersand Art Supply to my specific specifications. The edges are taped off because I treating them with GAC 100 and gesso primer. But there is so much more you can do with them!

I would like to share with you a great article from Ampersand Art Supply on the Top 10 Ideas for Finishing Cradled Edges. From using stain, ink, polyurethane and acrylic paint to more textural effects like collage, cold wax, texture gels and gilding, there are almost endless ways in which to decorate the edges of your cradled panels.

Articles, Books and More from Ampersand!
Encaustics on Encausticbord™
• Encausticbord™ ATC’s with Patricia Seggebruch

Oils on Gessobord™ by Jennifer Phillips
Using multiple Gessobord™ panels by Rebecca Crowell
Oils on Gessobord™ by Andrea Pramuk
Oils on Gessobord™ by Stella Alesi
Mixed Media techniques on Gessobord™ by Natalie Oswald

Applying Oil Painting Ground to Hardbord™ by Scott Gellatly
Priming wood panels with acrylic gesso and oil primer by Andrea Pramuk
How-to connect DEEP Cradle Panels by Andrea Pramuk
Mounting flexible supports to panel, an archival practice by Andrea Pramuk

Mastering Scratchboard by Norman Gaddini (book)
Scratchbord™ techniques by Sally Maxwell
General tips on Scratchbord™

Colored pencil techniques on Pastelbord™ by Elizabeth A. Patterson
Innovative pastel techniques on Pastelbord™ by Barb Pinc
Acrylics on White Pastelbord™ by Ken Muenzenmayer

Mixed Media techniques on Claybord™ by Cynthia Mosser
• How to mount paper on Claybord
Image transfer & collage - A demonstration with artist Dana Brown using Claybord™
Acrylic Painting on Claybord™ by Rock Newcomb
India Inks on Claybord™ by Charles Ewing

Presenting Aquabord™ without glass by Stephen Quiller

Watercolors on Aquabord™ by Karen Vernon
How to mount watercolors to panel by Dustan Knight

• Working on Aquabord with watercolor by Michael Ireland
Watercolors on Aquabord™ by Ali Cavanaugh

Five Day Art Challenge: Day Five!

It's day five of my five day art challenge! Today's topic is about the use of collage and assemblage in mixed-media works.

My mixed-media painting entitled Meditative Pathways (top) is featured as a detail. For a step-by-step demonstration on how to use inlaid boxes in your art, check out my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books). The assemblage-infused work is also in my book Art Revolution and my video Assemblage Accents: Exploring Faux Finishes & Patinas (F+W Media). This recorded webinar covers creatively customizing found objects, assemblage accents and sculptural creations with unique finishes and patinas. To enliven the mixed-media landscape, a diverse array of techniques and materials from repurposed and custom treated natural and man-made elements are explored. With the addition of faux finishes and decorative techniques, the everyday object can be transformed into a one-of-a-kind accent, communicating a concept or illuminating a subject in a unique way!

My collage-based work entitled Self Awareness (bottom left) is featured in my books Art Revolution  and Experimental Painting (North Light Books) and is on my video Collage Techniques for the Mixed Media Artist (F+W Media). This recorded webinar covers an array of exciting collage techniques from gluing, sealing, tearing, scoring, punching, die-cutting and custom inlays to wrinkling, creasing, burning, peeling-back, stitching, weaving, embossing and debossing handmade, custom treated and machine-made papers, foils and ephemera.

The work is also featured in Spectrum 15: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art. The Pears ( bottom right) is featured in my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books). Since it is day five, I'll officially completed my five day challenge!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Five Day Art Challenge: Day Four!

It's day four of my five day art challenge. Today's topic is about the use of inventive landscapes and environments with figurative works.

My mixed-media painting entitled Voyage to Michaelania (left top) is featured as a step-by-step demonstration in my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books) as well as Spectrum 18: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art. African Dreamer (to the top right) has been featured in Incite2: Color Passions, The Best in Mixed Media (North Light Books) as well as Spectrum 19: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic ArtShown along the bottom is my mixed-media painting called The Dream, which was featured in the 2010 Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles annual exhibit.

For instruction on Transforming the Surface with Mixed Media Painting Techniques, you can check out my recorded webinar available for download on It covers a striking array of creative approaches in which to alter and transform the mixed-media painting surface. Lushly painted passages and rich transitions employing resist, blotting, lift-off, dissolve, marbling, sponging, distressing, aging and printmaking techniques are shown in inventive combinations. Utilizing both traditional and unconventional tools and techniques, this webinar will certainly ignite the creative juices! 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Five Day Art Challenge: Day Three!

This is day three of my five day art challenge. Today's topic ventures on the darker side.
Featured to the right is my mixed-media painting entitled Night Fury it is featured in my book Experimental Painting as well as in AcrylicWorks2: The Best in Acrylic Painting (North Light Books). On the top left is a detail of my painting In the Mist.  It uses lots of textural relief and can be seen in my recorded webinar Creative Explorations in Mixed Media: Assemblage Accents, that is available for download. It covers creatively customizing found objects, assemblage accents and sculptural creations with unique finishes and patinas. To enliven the mixed-media landscape, a diverse array of techniques and materials from repurposed and custom-treated natural and man-made elements are explored. 
The Final Hour (bottom left), also shown as a detail, is featured as a process step-by-step demonstration in my book Experimental Painting (North Light Books).