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Tag Archives: rice papers

jammin'

 

The above painting was a result of an accident. I was just working away at creating another abstract using rice paper and watercolor. I was paying attention to my color choices, values and areas of interest and not trying to come to much of anything of an image. In fact the image I was working on was this one:

torque

 

I took it outdoors in the sunlight and photographed it. I had already planned to title it “Torque”. It looked twisted and sort of like a landscape in turmoil from wind or avalanche or fire.  So much of this that we hear on the news.When I came back in from doing that, I set it, turned a quarter of the way around, quite by accident. When I turned to look at it, I saw this:

jammin'2

 

Immediately I saw the figure in it and the guitar, the hooded jacket or sweatshirt he was wearing.  How exciting. The whole time I’m telling myself, “Don’t ruin him.”  I like this idea of working with the elements of composition and arriving at something new. It is as though the mediums and the artist come together and work together, one influencing the other. It is so much more fun!

I put a few finishing touches to it and called this done:

jammin'

 

Alan Clayton

Alan Clayton

Mary Smierciak3

Mary Smierciak3

Cindy Guzik3

Cindy Guzik3

The above three paintings were created in the Exploring watercolor class, this spring. They worked on the basic skills and techniques from learning the different brushstrokes, some basic techniques (wax resist, salt, sponging) and basic color theory. They created paintings of foliage and trees, little people, buildings, and a scene that was backlit.

Leslie Vrchota3 Masa Paper

Leslie Vrchota3 Masa Paper

Sue Mendenhall3 Abstract Rice Paper

Sue Mendenhall3 Abstract Rice Paper Collage

Jan Reche3 Realism Rice Paper Collage

Jan Reche3 Realism Rice Paper Collage

These last three paintings were created in the Watercolor Masa and Rice Paper Collage.  We spent the first two weeks learning how to tone, affix and paint on masa paper. The last four weeks were spent on learning how to use rice paper collage in our watercolor paintings. I think it is one of the most difficult techniques to learn and everyone did great.  They began by creating abstract rice paper and watercolor collages and gradually moved through them into incorporating collage into realistic images.

More student paintings from these classes may be viewed by clicking here or clicking on Student Art: Spring Classes in the pages bar at the top of the blog.

Thank you to all my students for sharing your work here.

ensorcelled

I learned a new word, ensorcelled, which means to bewitch or enchant. I found it in a poem written by Pen titled “Effigies”.  Thankyou, Pen!

I think I was so intrigued with the new word, it was part of what went into the above abstract. Also, there was a lot of talk about the “blood” moon this past month and I must have picked up on some of that while creating the above painting.

ensorcelled2  click to enlarge

It all began with this image, created in watercolor.

ensorcelled3 click to enlarge

Then came a layer of rice papers that I tore in abstract shapes and glued to the surface. My glue was made with one part water added to two parts acrylic matte medium. I devote two old brushes( one large, one small ) in order to attach the papers to the surface. Even though I clean the brushes following each use, they still get stiff and gummed up. I am very careful to not apply the mixture thickly or allow it to run onto the non-rice paper portion of the surface (this will affect and distort later applications of watercolor).

ensorcelled4  click to enlarge

I then go back and paint again, paying attention to what I see appearing on the paper. This is the most fun part of the painting. I am still learning how to let go and create from what I see appearing in the colors and the shapes. There is always an element of the unknown with these because I use different rice papers with textures running through them and they all accept the paint differently.  My partner becomes the materials I am using and the imagery that presents itself on the surface.  In otherwords, I never know what I am going to get when I start one of these.

ensorcelled5  click to enlarge

In the above step, I tried to pull the painting together by adding darks in and through the forms. I defined the orbs more. I gave it a promise of spring by adding some spring greens.

ensorcelled  final painting

To finish, I darkened the upper orange and yellow strip at the top, allowing for the suggestion of two more orbs or moons. I went back through the branches and, with little pieces of fiber strings I pulled from one of my ricepapers, I textured those gnarly branch-like forms. I also added fibers to the leafy greens, mid left.

For other posts with rice papers click here.

 

 

 

Shhh!

Shhh!hidenseek

I created the above paintings from photo references that my sister took of my Granddaughters while they played hide and seek after my daughter’s wedding.  Thank you to my sister for allowing me to paint from them.

I love the technique I used to create them so will share how I created the top one with you.

Shhh!2

In the first step, I toned a piece of 140lb Arches coldpress with abstract color. I had to get this layer dark enough so it would show through the rice paper I was going to glue on top of it.

Shhh!3

I then covered the entire surface with torn pieces of textured and transparent rice papers, overlapping them as I went. I mixed my glue with 1 part water to 3 parts acrylic matte medium. This created numerous textures over the surface of my abstract. I applied the glue on the underside of the papers and thinly over the top side of them with my brush, making sure I pushed any air bubbles from under the papers. I allowed this stage to dry overnight.

Shhh!4

I then drew my subject on the format in graphite. Yes. You can erase, easily, on this surface.

Shhh!5

I painted.

Shhh!6

…and painted

Shhh!7

…and painted.

I really enjoyed this surface. It was much like when I paint on toned Masa Paper pieces. I found I could lift and blend color if it dried too flat looking.  Some of the pigment would trail along a torn piece of the rice paper and add more texture.  Sometimes when I rubbed my brush over a dried painted area, interesting textures would show through like in the lower right hand quadrant of the second little girl, above. The glow of the original underpainting showed through in some areas, adding to the piece.

Shhh! finished painting

To finish the painting I added white gouache to the larger girl’s dress and veil. In the second painting I added the white gouache to leaf forms and tiny flowers.  I chose to fade the bottom of both pieces to show the textures of the papers and make the paintings appear significant of a memory.

I liked this technique enough to want to do more of them.

 

 

Melissa Scare4

Melissa Scare4

Ann Smith2

Ann Smith2

Alan Clayton2

Alan Clayton2

The above paintings are examples of work from the Exploring Watercolor class.  This group worked on wet-in-wet, wet on dry, and dry brushing techniques. They learned to soften edges, splatter, use wax resist, saran wrap print, sponging and masking fluid. We practiced painting trees, skies, clouds, buildings and little people. They did a great job of learning to partner with water.

Dorette Hess2

Dorette Hess2

Eleanor Wallace

Eleanor Wallace

The above paintings are a result of using rice paper collage with watercolor. This class learned several different techniques with rice paper. They worked with covering a painting with textured rice paper as well as using torn or cut rice papers before painting and after painting their pieces. This is by far the most challenging class I teach.

I send out a heart felt thankyou to all who participated. Thankyou, also, for sharing your work on this blog!

You may view the entire group of paintings in a gallery I have set up on the Student Art 1 Page found  by clicking here or by clicking on the title Student Art 1 on the top of this blog.

aquariumabstract2

I began this painting with an abstract watercolor and rice paper collage. This would serve as my background for the painting I wanted to create. I thought this particular painting suggested an aquarium-like feeling, so I went in search of a photo reference of a fish.

aquariumabstract3

Thank you to Wet canvas reference library for the photo reference of the fish. I drew the fish on a large sheet of drawing paper, first. I then selected a textured and fairly transparent piece of rice paper and traced the fish drawing onto it with a black sharpie. Any kind of waterproof ink can be used for this phase. The drawing can even be transferred to the rice paper using brush and ink.  I then cut and tore my fish image from the sheet of rice paper and affixed it to the surface of  my abstract painting. I used one part water to three parts acrylic matte medium to create my glue mixture. I was careful to smooth the image down to the surface of the paper with my brush, I brushed from the center of the image outward in order to get rid of any air bubbles trapped under the image. I waited for this to fully dry before proceeding.

aquariumabstract4

I painted many of the colors from the background through the fish rather than painting the fish to stand out from the background. It was a personal choice but brought some challenges with it by doing so. My fish appeared flat and lost in its background of colors. Had I chosen to use colors less like the background, he may have stood out better.

aquariumabstract5

I carefully cut dark strips of rice papers for my fish’s tail and fins and glued in some colored shapes along his back. I used india ink to blacken his eyes. I used white acrylic for the gills and white around his eyes and mouth. I then tore strips of textured rice paper and shaped some strands of seaweed in and around him. I hoped this would create some depth to my painting.

aquariumabstract6

After the rice papers dried, I painted the seaweed with several shades of green watercolor and acrylic white. This helped to give some depth to the painting as well as help the fish to become more visible within it.

aquariumabstract finished painting

The last thing I did was to push his head forward more and make it more visible by washing in acrylic white and cerulean blue washes under his chin and left side of his face. This helped to lighten the background without getting rid of the local color and shapes already there.

To view other rice paper paintings I have created click here.

westhighlandbull

The above painting came from using rice papers on the positive shapes in a painting, to add texture.

westhighlandbull2

I began with a painting and blocked in all the forms I wanted to include, Much like how I began the painting in the previous post.

westhighlandbull3

I covered the bull in torn strips of textured rice paper, working from bottom to top so the pieces would overlap like the hair on the bull would.

westhighlandbull4

I painted the coat following the values I saw in the reference photo. Thank you to Wet Canvas for the reference.

westhighlandbull5

To finish the bull, I glued more torn strips of rice papers on the head and painted them. I painted the light washes on the horns. I glued rice papers on the clumps of foliage behind and to one side of the bull for balance.

westhighlandbull finished painting

I finished the painting by painting the rice paper foliage and  using india ink in the hair fibers and shadows on the bull.

This is a fairly long process because the artist works in steps and gives ample time for each step to dry in between.  I liked this and will use it in future paintings where I want to increase texture.

woodsandpond

The above painting is another technique I tried with watercolor and rice paper.

woodsandpond2

I began by painting the landscape you see, above,  on 140lb Rough Arches Watercolor Paper.

woodsandpond3

I chose a piece of textured and mostly transparent  rice paper, measured it to the size of my painting and glued it on top of the painting.  I mixed one part water with three parts acrylic matte medium and applied it to the back of the rice paper and carefully laid it over the surface of my incomplete painting.  I used a large flat brush with soft bristles to apply thin layers of the glue mixture to the surface and gently push air bubbles out. A roller can also be used for this step. Handle the wet rice paper gently because it becomes very fragile when it is wet.  The watercolor paper ripples and my rice paper lifted up when it did that. I solved that by reflattening the rice paper with my brush and drying areas with a hair dryer as I did that. I allowed this phase to dry overnight.

woodsandpond finished painting

Then the work began. I repainted the original scene through the paper and added more colors as well as pushed my darks and detail. I added foreground rice paper shapes and more rice papers to the middle ground, playing with value and texture. The painting, above, is what I came up with.

You can also re-work a failed watercolor painting this way. It is very time consuming, so be prepared for that. I am going to be on the lookout for interesting textures in rice papers to experiment furthur with this technique.

My Granddaughter and I recently spent a Saturday, together, working on an art project. I am beginning a watercolor and rice paper collage class and my Granddaughter remembered that we had done this together once before.

redrockcollage2

My intent was to begin with a cruciform design created with washes of wet-in-wet watercolor.

redrockcollage3

Next, I experimented with different rice papers and tore them into strips and glued them to the surface of my paper, dividing my page into foreground, middleground and background areas. I made the glue from 3 parts acrylic matte medium stirred in with 1 part water. The glue should be runny, not thick. I am careful to not use too much glue in this process and try to keep it just on the papers. If it is allowed to pool in puddles around the papers, it dramatically changes the look of how the paint sits on untouched portions of the watercolor. paper.  I wait for the paper to dry or dry it with a hair dryer prior to moving on to the next step.

redrockcollage4

In the above step, I went back into the painting with color. I was careful to use colors I had already used in order to avoid too much muddying. I began to envision a large rock formation in the upper right quadrant. I could see a shape, in the distance, that could serve as another rock formation and enhance the depth of the landscape.

redrockcollage5

I knew I needed to develop a foreground and middleground for the distant rock formations. I mixed a dark from the greens and reds I’d used for my initial washes and began to carve out the lower edges of the rice papers. I did this in strips, thinking about the striations of rock.  I allowed this to dry before moving on.

redrockcollage6

I painted in the two rock formations in the background and darkened the the greens between them. I decided the foreground area was too large and bland and needed something to enhance depth. I glued down more textured rice papers in abstract tree or shrub-like shapes. You can see them, faintly in the foreground and middleground of this step. I again waited for the paper to dry.

redrockcollage finished piece

For the final step, I painted these shrubs and trees using my darkest darks, created from the reds and greens I’d used for lining the striations.

My Granddaughter liked many of Gerald Brommer’s compositions she viewed in his book on this subject. She decided to draw a distant house and paint and create a pretty colored foreground to the house.

houseinfield2

She drew her house and stream and painted large washes of greens, various shades, into the foreground. She painted her blue wash for the sky, and while the wash was still wet, dropped in some yellowy-green wash behind the house to attract attention to it.

houseinfield3

She then glued down all types of rice papers in torn shapes and glued them to her foreground green washes. She had more fun choosing all the different papers and glueing them down. She was pressed for time, so she dried this with a hair dryer.

houseinfield finished piece

Then, she painted her foreground area with colors she chose from my palette. She painted in her stream and used colored pencil on her house in the background. Oh! She outlined the house and the windows with a black sharpie.  My Granddaughter is seven.  I am always amazed by a child’s ability to create.

The above process takes time, so don’t rush yourself if you should try this. I enjoy the freedom and the shove to explore that the rice papers bring to a painting.

More posts using rice papers can be found here.

My sister has recently joined our blogging community here on WordPress.  I announced here, the release of her book on yoga for the special needs child in 2009. She has continued to offer workshops, lectures and demonstrations for educators, physical and speech therapists, doctors and parents of special children. She also shares with her private clients, helping them to grow and experience the gifts that Yoga can offer them. I find her work fascinating and her perceptions new and innovating. She brings a breath of fresh air to everything she does and an element of the spiritual always comes through.   One post I really liked was when she wrote of her daughter and the rescue of a little dog, Bella. You can visit her new blog here.

Welcome to WordPress, Nancy!   :)

 

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