Archive for June, 2011

RipOff 2011 – transferring the main drawing

June 30, 2011

In order to be able to transfer the drawing of the two figures onto the panel I needed to trace them on the back of the paper with charcoal. The easiest way seemed to me to tape the drawing to our patio door window, so I had a good view of the image through the paper.

The next step was to place the drawing, charcoal marks face down, on the panel and burnish the lines onto the wax surface. This worked really well. The lines transferred beautifully and hardly smudged.
The only thing was that part of  the samurai’s face was green from the mountains behind….I needed a smooth white surface to be able to get the features right. Now what?!


I decided to scrape off the charcoal lines in his face and paint in a layer of white paint, which I carefully fused flat.
As I was applying the white wax I also dry-brushed the shapes of the cherry tree canopies in. I coloured them with pink PanPastel and will later add some darker tone to create depth.
After applying the pale pink the colour of the pagoda really did not look very good, so I changed the colour to a warm red, again by brushing PanPastel on.
This is how it looks now:


It is certainly all still very coarse, and shapes or colours might still change, but I feel I’m on the right track!

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RipOff 2011 – next step

June 29, 2011

My original idea was to use Japanese chiyogami papers to create the garments of the geisha and the samurai. These are some of the papers I bought in Tokyo many years ago:


Below you can see how it looks a bit like a puzzle, with all the loose pieces of paper! (This was before I had painted the pagoda in).


Now I’m thinking of painting the garments in wax, at least the large pieces, and then layer in some smaller pieces of the paper. The problem with large papers is that air gets easily trapped beneath them, which would make for bad adherence. I’m also not sure how to render the faces; I want them to be crisp and smooth, like in the original woodblock prints….
Lots of creative decisions to make. It’s a challenge every year!

Working on the next RipOff challenge

June 28, 2011

The next RipOff challenge will take place from July 4 – July 9 at the Quail’s Nest art centre in Oliver. We open with a reception on Monday evening from 6 – 8 PM and will work Tuesday – Saturday from 9 – 3. On Saturday is the big finale, where we all rush to try and finish our piece. Feel free to drop by any time.

In a post, back in March, I mentioned that we had chosen American Gothic as our fifth challenge. Each of the 10 artists in our group chose a different artist for their inspiration to create Grant Wood’s famous painting.
We will have Frida Kahlo (Marion), Len Norris (Leo), Katsushika Hokusai (Thea), Pablo Picasso (Terry), Salvador Dali (Russell), Gustav Klimt (Dianne), Erica deRuiter (Barbara), Alexander Calder (Kurt), Hildegard of Bingen (JoAnn) and Amedeo Modigliani & Charles Shultz (Enid). Can you imagine the fabulous artworks which are going to emerge next week?!

I’m extremely sad that my radiation schedule is going to prevent me from working at the Quail’s Nest during the week, but I will be there on the Saturday for sure.  I have already started on my piece and will send Marion pictures, which she will print off and display in my name.
My artist is the Japanese woodblock artist Hokusai and this is my design:

Nihon American Gothic

I prepared a 18×24 cradled wood panel with encaustic gesso, two coats of beeswax and a coat of white encaustic paint. Then I painted the sky and far hills. For the pagoda I printed off the image on my laser printer and transferred it on the warm wax by first burnishing the image down, then soak with it water and rub off excess paper.
The resulting drawing was painted in with wax paint.

Notice the Gothic windows, an artistic license of the artist…;-))

The next stage will be transferring the drawing of the figures onto the panel.