Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Artfest day two- the wild portraits class

After much socializing in the commons and 'round the bonfire, being fed in the fab dining hall, and having a blast with the best bunk mates, day two rolled around (or is it day three, since we did arrive on Wed?). Class day two! I took a wild portraits class with the same paint teacher, Roxanne Padgett. Why two painting classes and the same teacher? I can only say I had a feeling about it. And it turned out to be just what I wanted to be doing.

We warmed up with drawing exercises. Roxanne likes us to try out all different sorts of surfaces of paper and fabric, including recycled ones.

That's my new thermos in the foreground. I'm in love with it. Tea time is anytime.

I'm painting away.....

Layers of paint, gesso, writing, collage, stencil, stamp, and a drawn face later, I have abook mark, and a mini portrait. Folks were voting for me to keep this one white, but I feel the need for color. Later.

I was so engaged with the process, not to mention covered in paint, it was hard to stop and take photos, but I got a few. Here's the Tea Time portrait in some of it's layers.....

Painting the actual portrait part on a transparency. I LOVED painting in reverse (see this is the back side) and can't wait to do it again. Anyone have access to used transparencies???

Flip the painting over to see the front side and attatch it to the collage below.

Coming back from lunch break, I was feeling rather serious about what was happening in one of my pieces (we work on 2-4 at a time). I didn't talk about it in class, or that day, but will share now. I'm painting away when this green angel started to emerge. I wasn't planning or thinking anything, just playing with technique, and suddenly she was there, wanting to be shown. This is the green angel that accompanied my father as he passed on this winter (age 60).

He had been talking about a green light in his room, and the more we talked about it, the more he began to see it clearly. It was his angel and she was gorgeous, with blue eyes, and happened to be green. She soothed him during surgery and accompanied him as he passed over. His death was so sad and unexpected, but it was also very beautiful, positive, and wondrous. I'm grateful that I was there. Death isn't sad, it's really just the parting from loved ones left behind. So.......

So THIS angel starts to show up in my collage. This on the left is pic one. She wanted an x-ray hand, which I didn't like, but I put it in anyway. My discomfort with the piece was about wanting so very much to see her, but not wanting to "mess it up". Does that make sense?

Next image of the green angel piece, I used a cut out to paint around the image, to mark out her radiance before I got the guts together to DRAW the darn portrait itself.

Then I grabbed the sharpie and just drew. I didn't think, I drew. Face. Wings. Heart collage. There she is. I was desperate to outline her face with the sewing machine (this portrait was on canvas) and get her to stand out more. Roxanne suggested use of her water soluble crayons, which did the trick. See the blue outline?

After I was home for a few days, and showing what I made, I realized every single thing I did had hearts in it, and hearts with holes in them- often three. My dad died from the results of a series of heart attacks and had surgury that put stints in. Three. Art, or to be more humble, the act of creating is also the act of revealing one's unconscious and putting it into form. Espeially when we get our brains out of the way.

I finished sewing on her when I got home and really like the piece. Creating is really scary and exhilarating sometimes. I'll get a good photo to post tomorrow.

This is one of the typical buildings at the fort. All stately and painted white. It really was a great location.

OH! Don't let me forget to tell you all about "trades" tomorrow. That's one of the great Artfest traditions. I brought 80 things to trade! I'll take a photo of the trades I received.

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