How I Paint

I soak watercolor paper in a tub of cool clean water for 2-3 minutes, remove the paper and press between 2 clean bath towels. Working on a flat surface with large squirrel mop brush I begin with loose watercolor washes. I do not work the a lot, but I continue to add and push the paint with either brushes or my fingers. This is an integral part of the work for me, once dried the fingerprints are like landmarks. Rarely I will use a blotter, but occasionally I will do so with a rough rag to create texture. Additionally, I use found objects placed in the paint and left to dry so as to draw paint to those areas. Other times, I might use harmless natural resists like castile soap, oatmeal or salt to obtain depth in the work.
At this point I usually allow the work to dry. Once dry, I can re-wet and add more paint and texture or move on to ink in the large areas. Inking is done with smaller brushes and pens. There is no planning or completion of inking at this time, the piece is open to re-working or starting collage in an inked area or adding paint. The inking is the mind engaging part where I can get lost for hours, allowing ideas to form, transcending the hum-drum-slow-rattle brain chatter and get some peace.

The Artist does it again

Originally published August of 2010, this is revisited February 2012.

The Artist. A Title. A venerable title that holds so much promise, yet is born out of deep pain or resonant joy, each work is a reflecting pool of a life, a time, a dwelling, a bond, a collaborator or partner. Ever The Artist. I have dragged The Title kicking and screaming all the way, sometimes losing sight of it, putting others needs before The Title’s needs. At times The Title gets complacent and waits, whirring and worrying, behind me shadow-like, and then feeling trapped it gnaws off a leg. And it lets me know every time that it is weary of being flouted and it gets angry. That is how The Title preserves itself. What if I die before It gets It’s work done? How dare I…so I step aside again and let it chew off a limb or kill a part of my life so we can get to work again.
The Artist has just killed again.

Recurring theme – surfaced again, I had to visit this again to find the essence of the work. Its always a bloody event, visceral and real, takes me down to a bare bones emptiness. Yet out of it comes something so clear and pristine that I gasp as I feel the new power surge through me.