Friday, April 28, 2023

Back Story on Kelp (and More!)

Each of my three new mask designs is based on kelp formations -- yet, each is unique; they are:  

9" x 12" Kelp Forest L963...

6" x 6" Bulbs and Banners s955 ...

and 4" x 4" Seabed Greens M339. 

Back story:  Walking the beach at Cali’s Carmel-by-the-Sea, I found masses of Giant String Kelp (also called Bulb Kelp) abandoned on sand after tides had swept it ashore.  

Above: Taken onshore, this particular photo doesn't show large bulbs, but it does show a few small brown ones, tangled in with the greenery that inspired the part of my design elements that I call streamers.  The textured growths inspired my 6X6 Seaweed 6 Stencil s099.


Bulb kelp is a form of algae capable of photosynthesis.  

Making art with these 3 new releases, I didn't limit myself to Pacific greens and blues; instead, I opted to see these as abstract designs -- so my inner child could emerge to play with any colors!

In playing with these new designs, I've used Brusho watercolor dry pigment crystals, Brusho wax crayons and heavy-body acrylic paints.

Today's post starts with demo photos that focus on my favorite way to use those acrylics.

about my brayer technique:

Above, I've squeezed out some heavy-body acrylic -- in this case, using two colors -- and I've started to load the sponge brayer with paint by rolling it downward multiple times over palette paper.  ("Sponge" brayers are also called "foam" brayers, sold as art supplies for children.)

Below, I have started rolling the loaded brayer over a stencil that's secured to paper with masking tape.

In the two examples above, I've combined two colors -- since pairing colors adds fun to any brayering project with masks and stencils!

Using either a foam (sponge) brayer as I do, or a Gelli Plate, you can get similar results.  I encourage trying both methods!

In the following photos, I'll show some of my results from using my sponge brayers. 

An upcoming post will go deeper into the two-color approach, hinted at above.  

Today's art samples, however, were created using only one top-layer color.  You'll see that altho I've limited myself to using only one color, I've done it as a last step in developing complex images that have visual history.  I've used a single color but other colors peak out from under it.....

Above:  As a top layer, I've used opaque pink heavy-body acrylic paint and 9" x 12" L963 Kelp Forest.  Directly underneath lies a middle layer, made with the same mask, but using translucent red-orange acrylic.  And the bottom layer, still faintly visible thru the top two coats of paint, is a print I'd made with green acrylics and 9" x 12" Boxed Vines L247.

I chose this print for a base since, to my eye, my "boxed vines" design blends in a friendly way with the imagery in my three new releases -- thanks to the flowing curves that dominate, and the circular shapes that are tucked in among those flowing curves.

Because I like this design-blend, I continued to use "boxed vine" prints as my substrate for making 4 more prints.

Thank you for your visit today! For the coming week or so, I'll make daily posts suggesting ideas for using my three brand-new designs.  Coming up ... Brusho colorless wax crayons ... "melting" color crayons ... a whole new way to use stencil- or mask-prints in collage ... and more.  I hope that my art samples will send you off on your own art-making adventures. 

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