Friday, July 8, 2016

Working in the Sketchbook!

Sketchbook background  study
Currently I am working on some textural studies and background ideas in my sketchbook.  Shown are a couple of page samples. My daughter worked alongside me in her sketchbook. We both had lots of fun! Great bonding activity for creative moms and dads.

To make the sketchbook surface durable, I apply several layers of acrylic matte medium and then two more layers of gesso to both sides of each page. This creates a nice, yet sturdy, surface to work on.  I then add texture using collage and more gesso, medium etc. Acrylics are used to add color and interest. 

Next week, I am doing some figure drawing from a live model while teaching at the Hartford Art School MFA program, so I thought I'd create some interesting backgrounds to put the models in!

For more techniques and examples of my journals and sketchbooks, check out this article on CreateMixedMedia.


Sketchbook background study 



More of my sketchbook work is featured in a book called Sketchbook Confidential 2 (North Light Books). Check out my figure study (center one in red, yellow and blue) on the cover!




You can also see some great sketchbooks created by other artists in an online class I taught. See them HERE


The classes start Jan 9 and runs to Feb. 17, 2017 for 6 weeks to 8 weeks online. Each week, Monday through Friday, there are informative, educational and inspirational posts to the class blog and I am present in the classroom every day during the work week!

If you are feeling creatively blocked or stagnant, I highly encourage the daily practice of working in mixed-media sketchbooks and journals. When you allow yourself to play with paint and drawing materials or write freeform in a journal, you open the door for insight to enter, breathing new life into your work and process! 

In my book Art Revolution, I provide an inside look into the work and minds of 21 of today’s leading mixed-media artists. Many of them use sketchbooks and journals as a way to spark ideation. In the in-depth profile on mixed-media guru Barron Storey, I reveal the artist’s unique ability to make a dramatic sensory connection with the world. By exploring graphic language and the cutting-edge work developed in his amazing journals, I unfold the artist’s ability to take chances and push boundaries. The signature work created in the journal format documents the artist’s ability to translate visual perception into graphic form. “The journals are not areas where ideas are developed but instead are daily records of experience, real or imagined. It’s a great big stew, uniting the body, mind and senses,” shares Storey. “For me, it’s important not to think first and draw after. I like to keep in the domain of the magic that happens when you’re thinking, seeing and drawing all at the same time.” 

Art Revolution is a highly visual, thought-provoking book packed with exciting profiles of leading artists and illustrators, showcasing their stellar, multi-media work. In addition, exciting splash spreads featuring demonstrations and behind-the-scene looks at the groundbreaking artists at work reveal signature processes and techniques. The book also provides insight into the historical influences behind contemporary thinking and approaches, investigating the origins of alternative, unconventional picture making throughout the decades. 

If you are new to mixed media or need to expand your repertoire, I have some fun techniques for you to try. Using collage, texture and mixed-media processes, I adorn my journals, sketchbooks and altered books as a visually stimulating way to jumpstart my creativity. Many of these techniques are demonstrated in my latest mixed-media book called Experimental Painting if you are interested in learning more. 


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