Thinking about the next step

I’m not painting on canvas at the moment, I’ve gone back to paper for a bit. Why? Two reasons. 1. I’m wanting to try out some different ideas and materials, so using paper is very freeing. 2. The recession means people are looking for works in lower price brackets. So I’m considering offering more works on paper for sale on ArtFire and Etsy.

One of the ideas I am playing with is combining some of my favourite, local, photos in Photoshop and then testing them out in different media. I haven’t used much pastel lately and I miss it. I have some wonderful inks I’d like to try layering with the soft pastel, and perhaps even with oil pastels. I have cut a few stencils lately for use in my scrapbooks and now wonder about trying them out in my artworks. There’s a sort of cross-pollination going on.

And there’s a third reason why I have switched to paper. Reason number 3? It’s way, way too cold to work out in my art studio. Seriously way too cold. My fingers start aching in just minutes no matter what I do; unfortunately I have arthritis, but it is confined to my hands luckily.  But I can work on smaller sheets of paper in my office. Even though that is not why I have an office – it’s really where I work on the newspaper we publish, and take care of life’s paperwork. But that’s okay, I promise to keep paint etc off the accounts. Hopefully!

Here is an amalgamation of 3 of my favourite photos, radically simplified in Photoshop. I think if I simplified it some more I could attempt to cut some stencils to get this look, then work over the stencilled image in pastel and ink. I’d ike to use Atelier Matte paints for the stencil work to get a really flat finish to start with. They provide a similar finish to gouache but I find them much easier to use. Has anyone else tried these newish paints yet?


8 thoughts on “Thinking about the next step

  1. Interesting idea. this is where small canvases can be the net big thing. have done a series of Five which are of mountains, these are mixed media about 10cm x 10cm and very tactile. they will be in my Fine Art Degree show and the feedback has been positive so far.


  2. Hi Cath!

    I like what you photoshopped there. It reminds me of linocuts too. I don’t know the paints you describe but flatness is such an interesting aspect to play with. I haven’t used gouache for a while, but this may give me an idea for my next prints.

    Paper? I really like working with it; I’ve put most of my drawings, mixed media pieces and pastel plein air sketches into the exhibition too, and sold two of the larger drawings – pieces on paper have also sold well on Etsy for me.


  3. I love this, Cath. I’m working on paper at the moment purely and simply becuase I’m a beginner. We had another paintng class last night and each of us has narrowed down the area we are working with. As I suspected Gary (our tutor) wants me to focus on words – or more specifically using one word as the source of a painting. Lots of paper practice- think I’m about ready for some canvas!


  4. This is nice! Are you going to do the stencil thing? I’ve never used those paints, but I love the look of this.

    I like your quilt, too. I’d never heard of couching before. How are the eyes?!


  5. Thanks Chris – I *am* going to do the stencil thing, it’s just a question of some free time LOL. Couching is just laying a thicker thread down on top of the fabric then holding it down with stitches across it using a thinner thread. How’s that for a very non-techie explanation!
    The eys are 40-something, so hanging in there fairly well considering 😉


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