Saturday, October 31, 2009

Cool Bird, Warm Colors

Warm Color Experiment in Progress

I have this t-shirt with peacock feather pattern on it, and it's black, purple and yellow. One day that shirt got me thinking about making a collage of a peacock with warm colors rather than the traditional cool blues, teals, greens and yellow greens. It was a challenge to take the peacock and swap out the colors, but it was also a reminder to me of one of my own lessons: It's not the color that makes the subject read as real, it's having the right values.

I tell my workshop students that if they can't always find the right color in their painted collage papers, that's OK. What you need to be sure you have is the right value. Light, dark, medium, darkest dark, lightest light.... that's what makes objects read as real and dimensional.

So, this "warm peacock" is not in its local color (the true color of an object or surface as seen in typical daylight), but the proper values are what makes it work and read as real.

Here I am about half way done, with the tail feathers and the background. the head and neck are still in an underpainting state. I plan to leave the nice drips in the lower left. Did you know that a peacock from behind is totally black and white? That can be seen in the lower right with an area that I created from old library book illustrations...

Stay tuned...

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Hand Made Paper by Judy

Judy Segall from Altamonte Springs, FL Makes Paper
Judy makes amazingly wonderful and beautiful paper in her Altamonte Springs studio. I use her papers in my collage work, and over the years we have become good friends and collaborating artists. Judy and I shared a show together at Steinway Piano Galleries a while back. Our work goes hand in hand and shows well together.

This blog post is to show you what a wonderfully artistic process hand made paper really is! Judy shared some great photos with me and I wanted to feature her on the blog and invite you to contact her directly at: to purchase papers directly from the artist for your own collage work!

Photos: blending paper pulp and water, much like making a margarita, no?

Hand Made Paper by Judy

Pouring into Slurry and Mixing Slurry

What a lovely green color, on the way from liquid to paper

Hand Made Paper by Judy

A Messy Business!

Here Judy is lifting the sheet from the vat of slurry

Hand Made Paper by Judy


Couching the paper presses out excess moisture, then it's ready to be lifted from the couching frame

Hand Made Paper by Judy

Almost Paper!

Pressing out excess liquid on top of a screen, I wonder if that green will come off her skin? Or will I see her in Target like that....

Hand Made Paper by Judy

It's Finally Paper!

Now you can really appreciate how much of an art this paper making process is. When I use these papers in my collages, I know they are extra special and luxurious, when I glue them down I make sure they are in a prominent place, knowing what care and labor went into making them!

Often times people ask me if I make my own paper for my collages, with all that WORK involved, I can't even imagine... I admire Judy's talent and artistic ability so much.

I guess you could even say that I'm green with envy!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Cub Scouts Visit the Studio

The Boys from Den 3, Pack 773 in Longwood, FL visited my art studio this week. The scouts were on a mission to talk to an artist in the field regarding occupations in the art world. We even discussed primary, secondary and tertiary colors on the color wheel at the request of their Pack Leader, Kevin Morrissey. Isn't it amazing that all colors in the entire spectrum can be mixed from red, green and blue?

Kevin informed me that there is a section in their handbook about collage, so I demonstrated for the boys how I achieve my painterly effects with torn paper. We talked about starting with hand painted paper and they all got a kick out of my son's workbook pages that I had painted, since they are all classmates! The boys had some interesting questions (and stories) and in the end, it was all about exposure to something new.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Amelia Island Collage Workshop

Day Three
Some wonderful finished work, or almost finished work by the group! Deborah's Apple, Sean's Boat, Debra's orange headed bird and apple, Linda's Apple, Karen's Apple, Susan's Cow and Apple, Mary working, Susan with her cow and apple. Everyone had a really great time at the workshop. I want to thank them for attending, and for being such a great group!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

New Workshop in Deland

I will be teaching a Collage workshop at the Museum of Florida Art in Deland November 7 and 8 (Saturday and Sunday) from 10am to 4pm. The last day to register is October 28. This workshop will cover hand-painting your own collage papers, sketching, under-painting, and my collage technique with tips and tricks for applying collage papers, shading, and making the finished piece look like a painting!

Click Here for all the details

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Amelia Island Collage Workshop

Day Two

First, we hand-painted papers for the collage. The group had great fun painting, splattering, stamping and mono printing all different kinds of art paper, textured paper, book pages, maps and personal ephemera. Then, I gave a demonstration of just how we would apply those wonderful collage papers over an under-painting on wood panel.

We got to know each other even better by having lunch together at the restaurant in the courtyard behind Sandra's Amelia SanJon Gallery. We had lunch together as a group each of the three days of the workshop. Sandra's partner in the Amelia Island Artists Workshops is Mikolean Longacre who helped organize lunch every day. I really felt that the lunches were a great way for us to socialize with one another, and it took the guesswork out of finding good restaurants on the island!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Amelia Island Collage Workshop

Day One

We had a great time on Amelia Island this past weekend dedicating our time to learning collage. The Amelia Island Artists Workshop Inc were wonderful hosts! And if you have never been to Amelia Island and historic Fernandina Beach you are missing a hidden gem in Florida.

Shown here is Center Street at the center of downtown, and the front of the Amelia SanJon Gallery, which is home of the Workshops and will be home to a featured show of my artwork now through January. The whole gang (almost) posed for a class photo.

Sandra Baker-Hinton, one of the partners of the Workshops is also a volunteer Turtle Patrol and she invited us all down to the beach on Friday night to experience the excavation of a nest, in hopes that there might still be some live babies in there who could use a helping hand. Unfortunately we did not come across any live turtles, but we did get to see all the hatched out egg shells and one little guy who did not make it.