Sunday, June 27, 2010

Kangaroo, Hopping to It!

©St Hilaire Nelson 2010

Another installment in the Carnival of Animals series collages for my music show Exquisite Harmony in September-- this kangaroo had been sketched up for a while but I did not have any really good golden "roo" paper. On Friday afternoon I made myself a batch of yellow golden brown papers, let the dry in the grass and then brought them in to save for later.

My daughter, Emilie, had a dance competition this weekend again in Orlando. We stayed down at the Marriott World Center Saturday and Sunday. I did not have the benefit of a dressing room this time, so working on the go was not an option.

Prior to heading out for the weekend on Friday night, I worked on this guy until 2am! Now let me tell you, a "Dance Mom" on Saturday with four hours sleep has to work extra hard to get up the enthusiasm needed for a national competition! I was dragging, but was very happy to have completed the Kangaroo and to see my daughter in the spot lights!

The poem by Bruce Adolphe that goes along with this musical movement talks about the unusual manner in which the kangaroo reclines... so I am happy with the way his belly is hanging down in the grass.

Once again, I experimented with some mark making on the background with the Derwent Inktense pencils, a Christmas gift from my husband that just keeps on giving...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Generosity of Others

©Aurore Brunet

Aurore took my 2-day workshop in Jacksonville in May. I had the pleasure of sharing a meal with her and her friend Clair on Saturday night. What a nice way to spend an evening with two friends who had come together to the workshop, yet invited me into their circle for dinner.

Since this was a 2-day workshop, the students had homework, which was preparing their own collage papers prior to the class. I must say that Aurore had the most original papers. She told me she painted them with acrylic house paint and spray paint. They were so lovely, and I oogled over them so much that she gave me a sheet. Much of the gold and white in the top of the head and the lower left neck of the Dalmatian are from her wonderful paper.

After posting the Dalmatian, I emailed Aurore and asked her if I could purchase more of her papers from her, they were so very different from anything I created here in my studio! Guess what she said? She said, "Give me your address, I'll send them to you for free."

I am always thankful for the generosity of others in art. People who donate books to me (Jessica Carter), who find frames at garage sales for me, and who share with me their painted paper.

I promised Aurore a glass of wine, at least. Until then, I tip my glass to all the wonderfully generous people who have given me not only collage materials, but titles for my work, inspiration, and advice.

See Aurore's work here
See Clair's work here

Monday, June 21, 2010

Looking for a Title


©2010 St. Hilaire Nelson

This Dalmatian is the most recent in my series of dog collages. I'd have to say that in the beginning I was not to fond of creating dogs, but they are seriously growing on me. I think I really enjoyed the Dalmatian because he has the same coloring as a black and white cow. I felt I was familiar with this color pattern and how to solve the shading in the white areas.

Necessity being the mother of invention, this dog ended up with some purple and burgundy spots because my stash of black papers was pretty much non existent.

So now, I am searching for a title for this guy. Something with a little pizzaz. I open it up to you for suggestions!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

The Weekend's Work


©St.Hilaire Nelson 2010


Peacock Heads
The Grand Bohemian Gallery has sold all of the previous eight peacock heads I brought them a few months back, and Michael asked me to create more. To mix things up a bit and keep it interesting, I made some scribbly backgrounds this time. I used my Derwent Inktense Pencils on top of the drippy fluid acrylics and I really like the effect. These pencils can be washed out with a little water to create a vivid translucent effect and once dry, they are permanent!

My last set of peacock heads included only the drippy painted backgrounds so I thought I'd add a little something more this time. Through experimentation I found that the pencils go on very intense if you use them on a wet ground. I painted the wood panels with fluid acrylics, let that dry, wet the panel, and added the Inktense Pencil lines. I really love the effect of the pencil scribbling on the wet ground. To be sure the pencil marks that were not washed with water did not smear during the glue application, I sealed that layer with spray varnish before adding the collage.

I really enjoy creating the peacock heads, and experimenting with the background colors and textures. My next set I think I will stain the wood panel first, making a darker, more rich ground to start.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Binders Workshop, Atlanta GA

Register Today!
Next week is the registration deadline for the July Binders Workshop in Atlanta, GA. Binders is offering a discount at two area hotels for workshop students. The store is like a trip to Paper Heaven and you will love it there! The classroom space is vast and.... this is a THREE DAY WORKSHOP.

That means that all day Friday, we will be painting our own collage papers. I firmly believe that the success of any Paper Painting depends on the papers you have available to you in your palette.

Click here for more details.

Student Work


©Leslie Kruzicki 2010

Leslie took my workshop in Jacksonville, FL. The turtle piece was her class project. She used a lot of magazine papers on it and I think it came out great. I love the way she nestled the stamps in the background underneath the turtle. The color balance really helps to bring the coral and underwater plants forward and the turtle to the background. The long horizontal strips of blue really give a feel for the water. Great job!

The second image is also from Leslie, a collaborative piece that started with the painting of the people by her teacher, then she took it and added the paper! She encouraged me to give this as an example of the difference between copying, emulating, etc. and simply using a technique to go your own way.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Cupcake Commission Completed

© St. Hilaire Nelson 2010

So many kind compliments about the cupcake commission! (you know how I love alliteration) I had to wait a bit to get a good quality photo but here it is, the final piece with the magazine lettering included.

It has been shipped off to Beth at A Little Something Bakery. I hope she is happy with the final piece. Much thanks to Jackie at Celebrations Gallery and Shoppes for making the introduction.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Digital Download of Collage Process Overview Book


PDF Download Now Available HERE
I now offer a downloadable PDF format of my Collage Process Overview!

The book is 40-pages and is designed. It is a companion to the DVD, goes into a bit more detail of the process with professional photography and a detailed supplies list. In order to make it a file size that is not too cumbersome to download, there is compression on the photographs. 


I will email you a web link to download the PDF, I try to get back to people who purchase the book as soon as possible. Take in account time difference and weekends that might take me an extra day to get back to you. Thanks!

note: with purchase of PDF you will be added to my newsletter mailing list, you may opt out at any time






Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Artist's Magazine July/August



©2010 The Artist's Magazine

The All Media Competition winners are in print this issue of The Artist's Magazine! It's exciting to see Out to Pasture, first place in the category of collage, on page 15 of the July/August issue.

I am sure the online posting of the winners was seen by many, but don't you agree that we still need to receive our art magazines in printed format?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cupcake Commission










©2010 St.Hilaire Nelson

Beth from A Little Something Bakery in West Hartford, CT purchased five of my 12x12 cupcakes from Celebration Gallery and Shoppes in Pomfret Center, CT when she first opened her sweet shop.

Last month Beth asked me to create a custom cupcake piece for her to compliment the others. This Memorial Day Weekend I spent a LOT of time in the studio. I was day dreaming about cookies, cakes, cupcakes and more.... all being made from scratch.

Beth had an idea for this piece. "Keep Calm, Eat A Cupcake." this will be added in magazine letters to the top right corner, near the cupcake that has fallen off the wagon!

As usual, my piece started with a pencil sketch on clear primed birch panel. The second image is the under-painting done in fluid acrylics over the sketch. I always work the background first, the third image is the background working around the cupcakes and leaving some natural wood grain at the top. In the background I wove in "Pat-A-Cake" nursery rhyme and some line art of the cake marked with a "B" I thought this was fitting for Beth being the baker and all... Next I tackled each cupcake individually, leaving the fallen one for last.

My next step is to add the lettering and apply the varnish for an even sheen. Stay tuned!