Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Working in a Small Space

Working from the Beach House
12x16, collage of handmade paper on panel

Another example of working from small spaces, this week I am at the Outer Banks (OBX) in North Carolina with the extended Nelson Family Clan! This is our tenth year at the beach and for the last few years I have been making a point to be making art. This is the piece I am working on right now, I plan to have it finished tomorrow and put it up for bid on the blog unframed. Coconut Palms, if you are interested in buying it via the blog, stay tuned.

Just like working from the RV, the most efficient way to work in this small space was to keep my papers packed in grocery store bags according to color, bring a stick easel, and prepared panels. I have a few more prepared panels with me which are mostly small sizes. Small sizes work well in a small space and they also are completed in less time, making them much less pressure -- this is good for vacation work!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

You Call That Art?

"Rip Curl", a Nine-Week / Two-Person Show
Elizabeth St. Hilaire Nelson and Jim Hannan
Enchanted, 25x25, hand-painted and found paper collage on panel

LoPressionism Gallery presents this Mixed Media Exhibition with a gallery talk entitled "You Call That Art" on August 14 at 2pm. I hope you will join me for a demonstration of my collage technique and an artists talk.

LoPressionism Gallery, 1002 E. New Haven Avenue, Historic Downtown Melbourne, FL, 321-722-6000, info@lopressionism.com.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

More Birds up for Bid

Cardinal on Blue
12" x 12" (30.5cm x 30.5cm)
collage on Panel, UNFRAMED
$100 plus $6.95 shipping and handling in the US
E-mail me for International shipping rates or other inquiries.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Texas Inspiration

Cactus; future reference material
Prickly Pear, 20x16, collage on panel with toothpicks

Texas and Arizona have offered some really great cactus imagery which is making me want to do another painting of cactus. I have done a prickly pear from my last trip out west which was over three years ago, and it remains one of my favorite pieces. I think I would like to do a second cactus collage to commemorate this voyage from Florida to Arizona!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Nature's Paintbrush

Purple Mangos
16x12, hand painted paper collage on panel
(top: petrified wood, middle: Sedona Red Rocks)

The second in my series of collages from the road. This is a small piece, very portable and utilized many of my scrap box papers! I pushed the envelope of local color on these mangos as I was inspired by nature's vibrant pallete in the landscape I've been experiencing in Arizona. 

Working in a Small Space

Juicy Fruits
16x12, collage of hand painted papers on panel

Today I finished up working on this juicy orange and started a juicy mango. These are both Florida images; the panels were sketched and under-painted when I left home in the RV last week. I had to bring prepared panels with me in order to make the most of my small space. My husband is a photographer and has been taking some great shots here that I will use for more new work next week when we are at the beach.

Usually I have my entire 10x12 art studio and all of its contents available to me. This week I am working from the RV on this road trip we have taken from Florida to Arizona! (See older posts as to how I packed and color organized my hand-painted papers for my small space). In addition to the packing my hand-painted papers, I transferred both clear gesso and acrylic gel medium to smaller tupperware containers and packed them along with two paint brushes and the plastic cups from my Paas Easter Egg Coloring Kit. These cups nest together and take very little space but work great for washing brushes and watering down fluid acrylics. I brought a few paints in the event that I have to paint some papers for just the right color. If you remember, when we were in Hawai'i I painted all of the hotel literature and used it in my Kona Coffee collage. After all, it's hard to resist literature that is printed on such nice paper!

I am also trying to take advantage of my scrap box. I brought along a shoe boxed size container of all my mid sized paper scraps from previous collages, which offers quite an array of papers in a small container, great for traveling. Be sure to save your scraps!

The first few days on the road I was unproductive as we were driving most of the day, arriving late and leaving early. The past few days we were moving at a slower pace since we reached our destination of Arizona and took time to enjoy the town of Williams and the Grand Canyon.

For this trip I made a point of bringing small panels to work on so that I did not exceed the space I have available to me in the RV. I did bring along a stick easel but I found working at the table or at the counter top was easier than trying to set up an easel. I packed all my supplies under the flip up bed. Luckily the paper can be smushed and crushed to fit into a small space! 

Monday, June 15, 2009

Nature's Paintbrush

Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona
Yesterday we witnessed nature's paintbrush in all it's glory! The Painted Desert and Petrified Forest offer an amazing array of colors to behold. If you ever, ever, ever, get a chance to visit this amazing place.... it will take your breath away.

These images (which hardly do it justice) are from the Blue Mesa Trail, which took us on a walk down into the valley between these amazing blue/green and purple stripe mountains, into the remains of the Petrified Forest. The amazing colors in these mountains was just an opener for the colors offered in the chunks of petrified wood that was scattered around at the base of the mountains.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

From the Road

The Art of Graffiti and Public Art at Cadillac Ranch 
Amarillo, TX

Our historic route 66 trip so far has been incredible, we have crossed through Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico arriving in Arizona yesterday. The sights we have seen have been a treat for the eyes, we took time to stop and take in some museums and route 66 attractions as we push on toward our destination of the Grand Canyon and Sedona, AZ. 

Here you see my kids enjoying the opportunity to leave their own mark with spray paint cans at the famed Cadillac Ranch. This public art arrangement of 10 vintage Cadillacs is the 1974 creation of Stanley Marsh, the helium millionaire who owns the wheat field where it stands, and The Ant Farm, a San Francisco art collective including Chip Lord, Hudson Marquez and Doug Michels. The Cadillacs represent the "Golden Age" of American Auotomobiles (1949-1963) and are half buried, nose down, facing west at the same angle as the Cheops pyramids. The piece is a statement about the paradoxical simultaneous American fascinations with both a "sense of place" and roadside attractions, along with the mobility and freedom of the automobile.

Stanley Marsh, the patron of the project, is the local millionaire. He is well known in the city for long time patronage of artistic endeavors including the Cadillac Ranch, Floating Mesa, and Amarillo Ramp, a work of well known land artist Robert Smithson.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Have Paper, Will Travel

Setting Up, Moving Out
Here are the plastic drawers that I normally use to organize my hand painted papers by color in my studio. Obviously too big to travel with, I had to find a way to condense them down but still maintain the division by color.

Save the Scraps!
All of the small teeny weeny pieces of papers that I have go into this scrap box so that I can take them along as well. I hate to waste any papers, even the small bits. This scrap box is not organized according to color, it's very haphazard. If I am looking for even SMALLER  pieces, they rest on the shelf of my easel!

Dividing Papers into Plastic Bags
when I work, I need to keep the papers divided by color so that I can easily find the "brushstroke" I am looking for. In order to take all my paper in the RV (it's stored under the lift-up bed) I had to put it into plastic bags and press the air out, then put it into the small compartment. When we stop and I set up to work, I can just fluff the papers back up. For my work, it does not matter if the paper is folded or wrinkled or crushed, and once you press the air out of from between the sheets, it actually packs down pretty small

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Road Trip

 Art In Progress
Finish Your Veggies, 15.5x15.5, preliminary sketch and underpainting on panel

I am headed out with my family (husband, 2 kids, 2 dogs) in a 30-foot RV for a trip from here in  Orlando to the Grand Canyon. We are going across Route 66 and estimate we will be gone a little over 2 weeks. I am taking collage supplies, some prepared and some blank panels with me. I hope to document art made on this trip via my blog. Highlights will include work in progress and how to work with a limited amount of supplies. I also hope to come home with some decent work, because I have a show in Melbourne, FL in mid July and the work will need to be finished, framed and ready early in the month.

Remember when I said I was looking for inspiration? Travel and a deadline should just about do it! Stay tuned...