Sun Series #1

Sun Series #1

Wednesday, November 21, 2018


It seems that this is the opportune time to thank all of you for your continued support of my artwork.
I enjoy hearing from you and am thankful for the comments and emails you take the time to write.
While my blog posts are fewer than when I first started, I hope they convey the importance that artmaking
continues to hold in my life.  And by extension the importance you as readers hold for me.

On this Thanksgiving Eve I wish you all a harmonious and delicious Thanksgiving Day!
May the holiday season ahead be one of joy and peace.

Many, many thanks!

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Rain, Rain, Go Away...

"I Can Hear You Smile-Yellow"
mixed media collage on board
12 x 12"

I don't know about you, but we have had so much rain during the past 2 weeks.
The ground is so mushy and soggy that you don't dare walk across the lawn without some serious boots on.
Leaves are too wet to rake and my bulbs aren't getting planted because I would be
just planting them in mud.

The above piece is something I made as part of a "challenge" that the Quilt Surface Design Symposium
hosts every year in connection with their workshops in Columbus OH.
I have never participated in the challenge but always enjoy seeing the work that the participants create for this
part of the symposium.  This year's challenge is based on color.  One is asked to create 4 pieces, one in red, yellow, green and blue.  As soon as I saw this I thought of a small collage that I made several years ago that featured children's legs and feet.  So that is where I am going with this series.

I had fun with this yellow one and the red piece I made earlier.
Sometimes I need a distraction from everyday life (gardening) and the more involved work
that I often do in my studio.  And I have to admit that studio work has been on a back, back burner.
So something like this is an indulgence and also a nudge to get me back in the studio.

I am still working on the "secret art" I mentioned in the last post.
Hoping to get that to state where I can show it here.

I appreciate your staying with me on these long lapses in posting.
Thanks for reading and commenting.

Monday, October 22, 2018

"Orange Leaf with Purple Ribbon"
mixed media eco print on board
"Leaf Abstract"
mixed media eco print on board
"Leave with Halo"
eco print with encaustic on board

It is finally Fall!
I am working at putting all of my vegetable and flower beds to rest for the winter.
So that is my excuse for the long, month long lapse between posts.

Right now in the studio I am working at what I sometimes refer to as "secret art"...
work that I am not ready to share even at a work-in-progress stage.
 But I am working.

The images included in this post are some of the small pieces I have made for the
Holiday Pop-Up Gallery in Mantua OH.
This is the second year for the event with expanded activities that include workshops, music
and performances along with artwork for sale in the gallery.
You can check out the event at
I will be teaching a family and kid friendly bookmaking workshop as part of the festivities.
It will be held on December 1st with the place yet to be determined.

With all of the activities and art for holiday gift giving it promises to be fun, festive and artsy!
Follow their website for more info.
I will try to keep you posted.

Happy Fall!

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Is It a Collagraph or a Monoprint?

Mono print of a maple leaf quilt block
2nd inking of the block

Mono print of the maple leaf quilt block
3rd inking of the block

Collagraph print with manipulated ink

Collagrpah print with black ink

I am still working with collagraphs but moving into mono printing.
It takes a lot of trial and error to develop the print quality you are looking for in a collagrpah print.
That's why you might see so many images of the same plate on my instagram page.
And believe me, I am not posting all of them!

But this is one of the benefits of printmaking that involves a plate.
You can really work with it, manipulate it and develop nuances with each print.
And, you can carry that further if you add mixed media enhancements like colored pencil, watercolor
or collage to the print.

Mono printing doesn't involve a plate that has the same permanent imagery or elements on it, but
rather offers the artist the opportunity to create variations of elements by working and reworking
the original design on the plate.  The quilt block prints above are,  to my mind, in between collagraph printing
and monoprinting.  There was no plate, just the fabric quit block, which allowed me to repeat
 the imagery.  I can only go so far with this as the fabric becomes soaked and imbedded with ink.
But it offers that same quality of showing the stitching and threads that I would get if it had been mounted
on a board and used as a true collagraph.

There is lots more here to explore.

Friday, September 14, 2018

Adventures in Printmaking Continued

mixed media collagraph on paper
12 x 8"
I have been concentrating on collagraph prints for the past two weeks.
A collagraph is made up of low relief materials that are collaged onto a sturdy board, then sealed, inked, and wiped.  The plate is printed on either wet paper or fabric most often using a printing press.

I worked with collagraphs a lot when I was in graduate school and then as a college teacher, but haven't done much with that technique in the past few years, so it was time to uncover the press and get to work.

Part of my experimenting has been seeing how I could incorporate the other media I like to work with once the collagraph is printed.  
The above piece includes some watercolor, colored pencil and collage.

"Blue-Eyed Gardener"
mixed media collagraph
14 x 14"

This piece is on cotton fabric with a second print of the handkerchief on organza.
The face is a transfer, the plants were inked and printed directly to the cotton fabric and then the two
pieces were stitched together.

I am having fun, working without the pressure of making something that is exhibit ready.
But I have put some pressure on myself to work on some aspect of printmaking each day in September.
So far, so good.

Soon I will be moving on to mono type.
Thanks for reading!

You can see more of the collagraph prints on my Instagram page.

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Adventures in Printmaking Day 5 and 6

collagraph print with colored pencil
"Nest" collagraph print with monotype lace*
(before colored pencil)

I have set September aside to explore and recharge my artistic spirit by returning to printmaking,
something I reallyenjoy but not part of my regular art practice.  Although I think maybe it should be.
I have made about 15 prints in the last six days, all using this nest collagraph plate
that I had made several years ago.

The reason for using the same plate over and over is to end up with several good prints as one has worked out all of the bugs in printing this particular plate.  The bugs being the pressure of the press, how much ink to leave on the plate (plate tone), the kind of ink or pigment*, the type of paper.
All of these variable affect the end product.

The final works that I have gotten that are most successful are the ones where I have incorporated colored pencil
after the piece has dried.  I love the depth of the image and the way the embossed areas
pick up the colored pencil.  I haven't been able to get that just from the way I have been wiping the plate.
So more practice and experiments in regards to using more than one color of ink are called for.

I think because I have been doing so much mixed media work that adding other media to my work
is my defaultmove.  Not that this is bad.  Mixed media and collage are part of my visual voice.
 I am almost finished working with this particular plate and will move on to others that I have
and make some new ones. I aso want to work with monotype some more.
So more to come.

*The pictures of these two pieces were taken at different times of day and in different places.  The finished piece isn't quite that dark and the original print isn't quite that light.  This work is on stonehenge printing paper and instead of the Akua inks I have been using I worked with my R&F paint sticks that I use in encaustic painting.

Saturday, September 1, 2018

September Discipline

collagraph print on paper
18 x 15"

hand colored collagraph print on paper
18 x 15"

I cannot believe it has been a whole month since my last post.
August was crazy busy and a whirlwind in reference to time.
Gardening, lots of family, teaching workshops, and the usual life maintenance stuff.

But I am back in the studio, with a challenge to myself to complete a month of investigating or rediscovering
printmaking.  I am hoping to do some kind of print process each day and have started with collagraphy.
The top image is the first of 4 prints I did today.
As suspected it did not print completely.
I think I needed to tighten the pressure on my press, which I did.
I made 2 more prints on paper and one on fabric of this same plate.

The bottom image is the first print hand colored with colored pencil.
That is one of the beauties of collagraphs.  One can go back in and rework them or add to them as I
did here.  The raised or embossed surfaces of the collagraph picked up the colored pencil so well.

I will continue to work with this plate for a few more days.
Want to try some chine colle' and other collage techniques.
I promise not to wait another whole month before I post again.
Daily images without all of the explanations I put in a blog post can be seen on instagram.
Thanks for staying with me!