Monday, May 30, 2016

First Art Fair of the Season

Well I made it through my busy week which included a plein air session, delivering works to the Art Life Gallery in Lombard, the last of my 4 part alcohol ink class and the first art show of the season in St. Charles.

Despite some very threatening clouds, some heavy down pours during set up (My hair was so wild that it scared a 6 month old - my too. ) and a gloomy weather forecast; things went well and the weather was pretty good, not too hot - just right. It was the first time I used my new booth. I was pleased, it takes up less room in transport and was cooler than my last booth.

My favorite thing about doing these shows is the people I meet.

I decided to paint the pavilion in St. Charles so I would have something local people could talk about. On Saturday I met a couple who told me about their friend that worked on the project and on Sunday I was thrilled when a man walked into my booth and introduced himself as the architect for the rebuild. He was born and raised in St Charles and I got the impression this was a labor of love for him. It was fascinating.

I learn a lot from other artists who wonder in and want to talk about different techniques, (The big tip was Golden interference colors -who knew? More later if it works.) or share tips they've learned from doing shows over the years.

Friends and family members drop by to say hello...

 I get to see some people I haven't seen for years. (In fact it happened three times this weekend.)
How wonderful is that?
We were well taken care of by friends who live in the area... great food, lots of wine, many laughs and terrific friends. Thanks Lauri and Ken. 

And we got to see this cutie! 
(My hair was better by Saturday night.)
Thanks also to Sam and Mark for whom I could not have done this weekend without.


Friday, May 20, 2016

Thanks For the Lesson

You can learn a lot from your students.

Recently my alcohol ink class wanted to do abstracts. I was a bit reluctant just because I don't do many abstracts but alcohol inks lend themselves to abstracts so well. So, yes of course, we would do abstracts.

The timing was really good for me because I've been procrastinating about completing an abstract commission. (Never tell me there's no hurry.) But in my defense I will say I did not feel it - I just wasn't getting into it. I went home that night and printed up some examples from the internet of all sorts of abstracts people have been doing and I did a few of my own - on canvasses. Now, painting with alcohol inks on canvass is totally different than on Yupo paper because the canvas absorbs much more of the inks.

By the time I was done with my two examples I was ready to tackle my commission. It was a lot of fun. This was the biggest alcohol ink I've done, 36 x28, so it was a bit hard to handle but I did fine. I was surprised by how much I like the size and am making plans to do more paintings in this size in the future.

When the day of the class came, I have to admit, I was a little nervous about directing people in the abstract but I gave them a few starting suggestions and reminded them of the different techniques they could use. Everyone was immediately engaged and in their own worlds. Laura, a student, made the comment that abstracts are instinctual and after watching the class I'd have to agree. The class was exciting, messy and a total riot! I loved watching  everyone come up with their own designs. I think they taught me a lot about the joy of just creating with no expectations. A lesson well needed for someone doing commissions, getting works to a gallery and getting ready for shows. It's not all about the end product... not everything needs to have a price attached to it.

 Everyone created their own unique pieces, so different from the person they were sitting next to. I think adding salt was one of the biggest hits.

Thanks for the lesson everyone!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Let the Art Fairs Begin

It's May, so the outdoor art fair season begins along with these  events and classes.

This Thursday I will be teaching 
my first four week class at Womanspace. I'm thrilled, because for the first time I will be moving a group of people away from the first week of alcohol inks towards some more advanced techniques. I just need to list what those techniques are. It's an interesting thing putting into words what's in one's head. The first week of class we'll do the basics and then from there students will be working on their own works as I bring  a new idea to demonstrate. I can't wait to see what people come up with. I always learn so much from my students.

 Saturday is the first collaborative event between Soul Spa and Finally Art. We're meeting at the beautiful McEachran Homestead Winery. I'm so looking forward to it as I think it will be a delightful day. Wine and lunch with two wonderful programs. One looking inward towards our own desires and one looking outward into the world as we get our creative juices flowing.

There are still spaces 
available for Taste . 
Click here for more information and to enroll.

Memorial Day weekend will be my first outdoor art fair in St. Charles, Illinois. 
 I am looking forward to doing a show in my friend's hometown. What a beautiful town it is right along the Fox River. I still have many scenic views of St. Charles to get ready in alcohol inks. This show will make the first for my new mesh booth, Pro Panel desk and print holders. I love my old booth but the panels are so large and time consuming to put up. I'm hoping that this new booth will be easier and cooler during those hot summer afternoons. (Pictures to follow.)

For today, I have a dinner with friends to discuss a new show we're developing followed by an art guild meeting. Tonight, artist Tom Heflin will come to critique our artwork. It's always a great night but a bit nerve racking as Tom is always honest, kind, but honest.

What does your month look like?