Saturday, December 11, 2010

Moving ahead

Creating a body of work takes up space, both in production and storage until it can be exhibited and/or sold.  My studio space is currently maxed out and I have a very large set of shelves in another room that houses drying pieces and stores completed images.

Once pieces are completed and framed, I usually try to hang them on a wall at home.  This lessens the risk of damage from someone walking into them and breaking the glass.  But even then there is only so much available wall space in my house.  However, some pieces will be moving out soon.  More on that  later.

Meanwhile I continue to produce and wet mount more gyotaku and have been framing a few more pieces tonight.  Framing in its own right becomes an exercise in frustration sometimes and a learning experience always.

This piece is a crop of a gyotaku/watercolour of bluegill done on batiked masa paper.  Since I provided a brief overview of how I created this batiked paper on the blog, it is one of the most popular page hits on this site.  Its good to share information and knowledge and see what others do with it.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Aranciata continued

Remember this watercolour of the bottle of San Pellegrino that I started a few weeks ago?  Its still in progress and I devote small amounts of time to it as and when I can.  There are hours and hours left to go in this piece and that's ok.  Its rather therapeutic to add layers or a few little details when I have a few minutes, knowing its building towards completion.

This piece is on a 22 x 30 sheet of 200lb paper.  I really like the heavier paper because I don't have to stretch it beforehand or flatten it after I'm finished.  Its also quite forgiving in terms of scrubbing back when I need to.

The glass of the bottle is textured and I'm trying to create a sense of the texture.  Its starting to come together and I hope once I put in the background it will look better.  The background is another challenge that I haven't wrapped my mind around quite yet...

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

December crush

Christmas is rapidly catching up with me and I'm caught in a whirlwind of printing, painting, commissions and marketing.  That combined with shopping and wrapping and posting.  Its all go and seems to be what suits me in some ways.  The constant push for deadlines is what helps me actually make deadlines instead of procrastinating.

Today I picked up three more pieces from the framer.  There may be just a couple of pennies rattling round in my piggy bank now, so these pieces will need a home soon.

I'm in the midst of organizing exhibition space for the gyotaku and a lovely local restaurant has agreed to hang some of my work.  I'm also finalizing some capelin printing and painting and will have some smaller pieces available for sale soon.  This little fellow may be one of the giveaways in my December newsletter.  But you'll have to sign up to find out... The newsletter will be out on the 15th and will be a virtual cornucopia of goodies, giveaways, downloads and information including Nick Simmons, watercolourist extraordinaire, who answers my Twelve Questions.

You can join my mailing list to receive this newsletter direct to your inbox by clicking on the link on the right of this page.  Its that simple.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Fish stress

My printing table is littered with capelin carcasses in my quest for the perfect print of this little fish. 

I want to print a school of capelin and of course you know the dangers that is fraught with, don't you?  The precision of inking, the correct weight paper, the right printmaking ink, just the right amount of molding paper around the little body, not getting any additional ink residue outside the print area... and that's juse one.  How many fish in a school???  And what are the chances of getting ALL of them as acceptable prints on the same sheet of paper?

The image here isn't of capelin, but their close cousin, smelt.  I've printed these using white and gold inks and added detail later.  Holding my breath, I wet mounted this Moriko Kozo paper on plain mulberry paper for backing.  I was afraid the dark blue might run when wet, but all was well and the colour held.  This is one of the more expensive sheets of Japanese paper, but worth it in terms of versatility, texture and look. 

Now back to the capelin...