As a business woman, I have lived by my wits, using creativity and invention to fulfill on client requests. As an experimental artist, I live in this same place of Curiosita. Currently, I am re-reading How to Think like Leonardo da Vinci by Michael J. Gelb. He describes Curiosita, this first of seven Da Vincian Principles, as “an insatiably curious approach to life and an unrelenting quest for continuous learning.” How fun is that?
The experimental artist starts by asking a question: “What would happen if…..if I let these two inks merge….if I added washi paper here….if I collaged on some interesting shapes…if I scrunched up plastic wrap and left it there until the painting dried?” The entire piece is created through inquiry. And it’s one that doesn’t stop after the painting is complete. You will see something different each time you look at it, if you’re curious.
Many times I’ve tried to think in advance of what I want to paint. It really never comes to me until I start. It’s a lot like writing. If you just start writing, the ideas and characters show up. There is something to be said for doing sketches if you’re trying to create something recognizable. Value studies are good to see if your piece is balanced. My value studies come from photos of the painting as I’m working on it. I will switch the photo output to black and white to see if I have a preponderance of one value in an awkward place or whatever else might need tweaking.
Usually I will choose three colors of acrylic ink that will be interesting alone and in combination. For example, the colors of purple and yellow when run together, make a luscious brown that you can’t get any other way. One of my favorite pieces “Sedona Sunset” (shown at the top of this post) was an experiment to discover what would happen if I mixed turquoise blue ink with orangey red.
“Soulmate” was also an experiment in color with blues and reds, so it comes off as purple. This one I sketched out and carefully designed. When it was finished, I thought it was too structured, so I cut it into strips and wove it back together, collaging on some of the leftover pieces. Then I wove gold wire through it for a final touch. It’s one of my favorites.
When you look carefully at “Disk Derby”, you’ll see that I used a variety of textures, but all the shapes are circles. This adds consistency to the piece. For more interest, I ran threads of dyed gauze throughout.
The joy that erupts when I’m creating is equaled only by singing in a choir that is so good you can feel the overtones. It’s an energetic experience and one that I hope for you when you purchase and enjoy my paintings.