Five of my wax paper landscape paintings are on display at the Shute Park branch of Hillsboro Public Library until April 30, 2015. These paintings were created with no preliminary drawings. Instead, splotches of thick watercolor pigments were flattened under sheets of wax paper to create the shapes and textures of trees.
Ten of my textured wax paper paintings are on display at the Orenco Station New Seasons Market during the month of October. I am pleased with how they look against the orange walls in the store’s cafe area.
These paintings were created with very little brush work and no preliminary drawings. I applied thick splotches of watercolor paint to paper primed with matte medium, and then pressed sheets of kitchen wax paper into the paint. The resulting textures and colors inspired the creation of these landscapes, which I named after trees and parks in the Orenco Station neighborhood of Hillsboro.
I have recently returned from a three-day painting workshop with Ruth Armitage at Sitka Center for Art and Ecology. Ruth is an accomplished Oregon painter and I enjoy her teaching style. I travelled to the Oregon Coast to paint in her workshop last week, knowing she would focus on the elements of design as keys to success in a painting. More specifically, Ruth encourages her students to commit to the dominance of one design element within a painting, choosing from line, color, shape, texture or value.
Over the three-day period, we completed three paintings of the same subject, choosing a different design element to explore each day. Since my habit is to usually paint with shape and color, I chose to explore line on day one, texture on day two, and color on day three, working on Yupo paper the third day to punch up the hue of the primary and secondary colors I love to use. I didn’t plan on painting myself at this workshop, but a reference photo of me in a sunhat and a dress I really like kept my interest for the entire workshop.
The self-portrait shown here is a painting done in my usual style of shape-making and flat color, with the addition of collage to add texture. I explored texture using magazine clippings and some of my hand-carved Speedy-cut rubber stamps. It was so much fun to create! I look forward to playing with texture some more, especially as a way to re-invent and invigorate some not-so-great watercolor paintings I keep in a drawer in my studio.
With the beginning of autumn, and more time to paint, I have made a personal goal for myself to draw and paint 50 figures before the end of the year. I am looking forward to this opportunity to play, to not get hung up on details, to let go of perfectionism and explore the many ways I can make these figures my own through color, shape, line and collage.
These are small pieces, and I am drawing my inspiration from the work of favorite artists, magazine photos, and my own personal images. This painting, titled “Flower Lady,” is based on the outline of my shadow on the sidewalk on a sunny afternoon last week. I used hot press paper, which is so smooth it almost feels slippery. I haven’t painted on hot press for some time, and I really enjoyed the loose feel of painting on it.