Sunday, 7 October 2012

Retro Inspired...

I recently did a Mixed Media Art workshop with a well-known Mexican artist, and the thing I got out of the course that has impacted me the most, was actually the process of going back to the things I have always been attracted to, and implementing aspects and features of those things into my own artwork.

I've come to be reminded that the mid to late 1960's and very early 1970's (before the psychedelic flower bolted away to seed) really is my favourite era ever when it comes to culture, style, fashion and music!

Recently Grazia magazine (UK) had a feature on the Fashion looks that changed the 50's, 60's & 70's and I found myself clipping some photos out to put in my inspiration journal to remind me of that eclectic bohemian vibe ... Marianne Faithfull, Anita Pallenburg, Edie Sedgwick, Jean Shrimpton, Catherine Deneuve, Talitha Getty, Penelope Tree, Mary Quant, Sharon Tate... 

I totally adore the whole vibe that was going on in London at that time, and also in New York... and Laurel Canyon and on the beaches of California.

I love the retro look and so I've done this first painting, including just a little touch of that energy.  

I heard the name of the painting in my head, as soon as I begun it ~ I'm calling it "The Magician's Daughter". 

Mixed Media ~ Watercolor paint, paper collage, acrylic paint, stabilo pencil, white wax & glitter, 
on Watercolor paper

Catherine Athena xo

• • •My journey through the senses• • •

taste:: Vanilla Chai tea, sweet and fragrant like a fine delicate incense with Cinnamon and Cardamon, Liquorice and Vanilla.
smell:: Raindrops on fresh green leaves as an afternoon storm blows in
touch:: Holed stones, worn by the ocean's tide, from a beach on the south coast of England
see:: Jackie Brown - A Tarantino film with a super cool soundtrack
hear:: The Rolling Stones' - 'Black and Blue' ~ their 1976 classic album
think:: I'm as ready for this coming Winter as I'm going to be!
feel:: The most contented in my life I have for ages!
read:: Art suppliers catalogues
intuit:: When one particular color is going to look just perfect in combination with another.... 

Things have come full circle...

"To paint is to love again" ~Henry Miller

It feels like I have come full circle with my art over the past year... I started with Watercolor, and have traveled far, far out of my comfort zone, learning new techniques, totally different materials, all kinds of things I perhaps wouldn't normally think to use. 

It's been incredible to experiment and play, and now I'm back where I began... to Watercolors again. But this time, I find myself combining other things I've seen and learnt along the way, to allow a real mixed-media feel and a new way of creating. 

I'm having fun, trying out different things I've never done before...just real simple things like using the edge of a white tea-lite candle to draw stars on the paper (as wax resists) before the watercolour paint goes on.  

And also using art masking fluid, applying it with a thing called a 'ruling pen' (which is a little stick, with a calliper end and a turning dial on the side, that can be used to adjust the width of the line it makes) - you feed the masking fluid into the gap between the callipers and then draw on the paper. I've been able to make some cute plants in intricate shapes.

Catherine Athena x

Friday, 5 October 2012

Studio Tidy Time...

Last weekend I had a big tidy up and re-sort of my studio space... A big clean up like that feels really good! To get some energy moving around, shake things up... 

I found myself putting away some supplies I've been using for the last few months and now not currently feeling called to use at this time. 

I packed down my big easel and put it away (for now) and pulled up my painting dust sheets, shook them out the window, folded them up, and stored them away (for now)... And wiped down the table top and laid out me big drawing board. 

I got the drawing board last year in a sale, having wanted one for YEARS...and I stashed it away at the time, knowing full well I would be wanting it later. It's one of those one that rises up on a slat base, so you can have it slanted at varies degrees.

Then I began sorting some paints into clip seal bags...and put my Lino cutting blades safely into a secure little box. Then the rather enjoyable part ~ pouring out some brightly-colored new watercolor paints from tubes into empty half pans, letting them dry so I'm ready to begin. 

I stretched some watercolor paper. That was the first time I've ever done that. I had no idea how it would work out. But these things have to be attempted, right? 

Catherine Athena x