Monday, October 30, 2017

Afterword at Helikon Gallery--Opening this Week!

Above is one of the posters for Afterword. A Tribute to Literature.
It's the completed piece from my previous post,

Here's the line-up of all invited artists for an easier read :)

Many of my friends are showing works in this show. If they have a website, it's listed below. Click on their names for more of their works--you'll be amazed!

Here's the direct link to the show:

In addition to Afterword, Helikon Gallery is presenting
Goodnight Sweet Prince--The Artwork of John Van Horn

So much stunning artwork to enjoy--so please come out this Wednesday or First Friday and support the arts, working Denver artists, and a great gallery!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Macbeth and a Ghost: Afterword at Helikon Gallery
Macbeth and Macduff (preliminary sketch). Ink with watercolor, approx. 3" x 5"

Over and over again, Helikon Gallery presents unique and amazing shows. This November I'm pleased to be part of Afterword: A Tribute to Literature 

Shakespeare's Macbeth is a favorite. The sketch above was a preliminary for the piece I was planning on submitting.
Macbeth Sees Banquo's Ghost (preliminary sketch) Red pencil and ink, approx. 4" x 5"
I was fascinated by the witches in Macbeth, but terrified by the ghost of Banquo, so instead of my initial idea of Macbeth and Macduff's final battle or a painting with the witches, I ended up thinking about a composition that included Banquo's ghost. I did three or four different thumbnail compositions for the piece, but liked this one best.
This is the initial pencil drawing on brown paper, enhanced so you can see the lines, which were actually drawn pretty lightly. The finished piece is 8" x 10".
The crosshatching followed the establishment of the first white highlights and a good tweaking of the figures. The biggest challenge was making Banquo's Ghost transparent, but with the good suggestions of some fellow illustrators, I did it!

You can see the finished, full-color piece by clicking on the link to the show and scrolling down:
I'm excited to be exhibiting my work alongside some gloriously amazing works by other artists and illustrators--please check out all their pieces on Helikon's site!
Hope you can come to the show either for the Opening Reception on November 1, 2017, or on First Friday the following Friday, November 3rd.
Thanks for checking this out, and for your support of the arts!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

DIY Artwork Bags

Recently read about a company that made carrying bags for artwork, and they sounded great.

Especially because this photo illustrates my usual method for carting artwork to galleries and conventions.
I struggle philosophically with using petroleum-based plastics, and bubble-wrap and foam cost a lot too. After one or two wraps, it's torn and fit only for the trash. And that's a tough one for me to justify. Plus it takes copious amounts of time to wrap, unwrap, and re-wrap artworks.
Unfortunately, when I checked out the pre-made art-bags, I found them very expensive--upwards from $20 per bag. I figured making them myself would be easy and cheaper. And it was both.
Luckily, awhile back I took a sewing-machine class in order to make cloth goblins.

So I bought $30 worth of thick felt (made from recycled plastic bottles) and made 30 carry bags of different sizes. It took 6 yards of fabric.

I'm not fast at sewing, and it still only took me 5 hours to make all the bags. They work great! I'm sure a crafty-er person could add string-ties or other fasteners and make these even better. But for now, all I have to do is slip the artworks in, fold the top, put them in boxes, and take them away.

Still have to depend on bubble wrap and foam for shipping artworks, but these bags are great for a more ecological, quick, and safe way to deliver paintings to their destinations.

Thanks for reading!


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Death gets a lot of Idea-Help
Death might run out of ideas from time to time, but people always manage to assist him with new and effective ways of killing their brothers and sisters. Poison gas? Sure! Automatic weapons aimed at concert-goers? Why not?
Couldn't keep reading the repetitious news full of lame politician's "thoughts and prayers", so I drew instead.

This one, like most of my sketches, began with a red Verithin pencil on toned paper. (I like Kona Classic best because I can use wet media on it if I choose.) Beginning a drawing with red pencil rather than graphite seems to keep my initial gestures looser, and I like the original red lines still visible in the finished art.
The red gestural sketch is then tightened up with either a Pentel brushpen or a brush and India ink. Then, most often, I add the white highlights, before the shading begins--in this case, a fine-point white Signo pen was used for the white. The cross-hatching follows; I like Maica brand Hi-Tek-C pens if a crow quill and ink bottle isn't handy.
This drawing is small--4" x 6". It's the third work of October--or "Inktober". The previous two were sort of humorous. Who knows what the news will bring in the coming days.

Thanks for the visit--I wish you peace.

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