Friday, October 31, 2008

October 31st - All Hallows Eve

Happy Halloween!

Here's a little squirrel enjoying a popcorn treat for Halloween.

This is the pumpkin I carved this year.

Hello! I'm Johnny Cash.

And this was the ghastly surprise we had this week.
A sticky slathering of 3 inches of snow, some of which is still on the ground.
Now that's truly scary.

But nevermind that.

I can haz candy?

Friday, October 17, 2008

Illustration Friday: Late

I Pity the Fool
variable edition 1/1 22" x 24"
Detail of a bleed print from a masonite carving on Somerset paper.

original woodblock carving on masonite: 24" x 24"

masonite plate inked and ready to print

1st print from plate
print size 22" x 24"
paper size 22" x 30"

Stop-Motion Animation - Part 1

Graeme Patterson is a Canadian artist who is the featured visiting artist at the Ottawa School of Art this year. His specialty is stop-motion animation and installations using the films he creates set into the very elaborate sets he makes. His show opened last night at the school. I was so excited to see his films. They are very charming and I was extra excited because he is teaching a workshop on how to do what he does.... so very happy to learn this... feeling very lucky...!

Today we started a two day workshop on how to make your own puppet and stop-action animation. I have wanted to do this forever, so I signed up as soon as the list went up.

Step 1 : wire form with duct tape at hip joint and shoulder joints, one hand attached with extra long fingers

Our figures were made of wire, foam, fabric (pantyhose and your choice of cloth for clothing, feathers used for hair or fur if making an animal), glue from a glue gun.

It's messy and you burn your fingers often. I am used to this method of working because of the friendly plastic I have used for years, so it didn't bother me at all, but was annoying at times because it takes longer to cool down than FP does. I also used cardboard for the soles of the sandals.

Step 2: adding foam to bulk up the frame using a glue gun to attache pieces as well as forming the hands with the glue

The whole character was put together with only a glue gun and some foam over the basic wire frame.

Skin is created by stretching pantyhose over the foam and attaching it with the glue gun. Seams are really visible but it doesn't seem to matter. If added delineation is needed for the face or the muscles you put glue gun glue into the area and wet a finger and press the shape you need into the glue. It pushes its way through the nylon and then holds the shape. Everyone had a few times where there fingers got burnt and a few of us even had blisters. We suffered for our art.

Step 3: Here I am attaching the nylon to the foam. I gave my man a manly chest.

Here is my completed character: front, two sides and back. Mesh shirt, swim trunks, sandals. All the joints move and you can position every part of the body. It's very sturdy.

Tomorrow we will add small details to our puppets, painting the face and hands. After we finish our puppets we move on to learn what's involved in creating a 4 second animation.
I cannot wait.
He told us to think of a little body movement our character can do, like a little dance, and then we will animate that into a never ending loop.
My guy is full of possibility.
We will also attempt to build a simple set for our characters from foam core and another type of foam that looked like a type of building material... it was blue... Hopefully I'll have an animation to post tomorrow (!) but it may take a day or two.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Markets this weekend!

my carp market booth looked like this last weekend...
Wow. The weather forecast looks perfect! Sunny and 20C!? Awesome. I'm looking forward to the markets this weekend. I hope to have some new friendly plastic things and a few new paintings... but I am plastic-focused right now.

Next Week and beyond...

School obligations have me away next Saturday at Carp, and next Sunday at Ottawa/Lansdowne, my booth mate Tim won't be there and since he isn't I won't be either. So my next market after tomorrow will be the final market days for the season for me at both Carp and Lansdowne. If you have anything you'd like me to make you please let me know at either of these markets or drop me an email at If you are here reading this, then you know this is the place I come to to post notices and such and once I figure out which Christmas shows I will be at I'll post that information here for sure.

And then there were three

16"x20" acrylic on canvas (custom order)SOLD

This was a special order created for a couple who now have three cats... little Lily was found under a lily leaf in their backyard this summer. She's the bright-eyed eager one in the back. I was told that the other two cats have grudgingly accepted her and now let her sleep on the bed.

Night Out with The Girls 24" x 6" acrylic on canvas SOLD

Illustration Friday: Strings

I'm working on a project using painting with light techniques. It looks a lot like strings, except they are made of light. This is an image showing a 1926 photograph of my grandmother and my aunt, who had a turbulent relationship with each other. They were tied to each other but sometimes it was a bit messy... and not so great for those around them.

HOW TO: Painting with light is done by setting your subject up in a completely dark space and then taking a light source and moving it around your subject while the camera is taking the picture. I used a laser pointer here and had a small flashlight shining onto the top center of the scene. Your camera must be on a tripod and the shutter speed is set very slow, like a minute or more, ISO at about 100. Because the shutter is open for a long time the camera will pick up all the movements you make with the light, creating lines wherever you move the light.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Illustration Friday: Sugary

A variable edition of 5 dry point prints made by drawing into Lexan plastic with a compass needle and a Dremel tool, then inking it up and running it through a press.

Two prints have additional chine colle work.

This was a yummy project with sweet results.