Mixed Media Express 3

IMG_4256 (Edited)The Pond – Mixed Media on 10×10 inch cradled board

Here is another multi-layered painting from the Mixed Media Express Series, Lesson 3 by Julie Prichard.  I had a love/hate relationship with this painting.  I was really enjoying the process of adding and lifting paint until I got to the glazing/ageing part.  You see, this painting is meant to be turned 90 degrees to the right with the white stripes being horizontal.  For some reason, I really didn’t like it once the yellow glaze was added and I didn’t know what to do with it as far as extra mark making was concerned.  The painting wasn’t speaking to me.

I thought I would leave it for awhile and come back to it or start over.  In the meantime, I decided to paint the sides with black gesso.  Somehow the black gesso just made the paint pop.  And then I looked at the painting from a different angle and decided I liked it better this way.  I had a real problem with that blue square, but now it feels grounded.  Once I flipped the painting around, I felt really happy to make marks and finish the painting.  It looks like a landscape to me.  I know this is a huge departure from the way I normally paint, but I am really enjoying myself and am discovering new things.  Because of that, I may never go back to painting the way I did before and see this as a new way forward, which is very exciting.

Here is a close-up of some detail:


We have stencil, marks, stamping, collage and layers of paint.



Layer Love 2.0

I have now pretty much completed this on-line course with Julie Prichard and Chris Cozen.  There were a few lessons I did not do.  As much as I like the work of Chris Cozen, her method is a bit more complicated than I would like to do and not the style that I want to get into.  However, watching her work is very interesting and I may go back and try some of her methods to incorporate into my work at a future date.  The nice thing about buying an on-line course like this is that you can look at the videos as many times as you like and at your own leisure.

I will now show you a few pieces I completed on the course.

IMG_4178Lesson 2:  This was the first painting I worked on – 10×12 inches canvas board.  The aim of this lesson was to introduce you to fluid and open paint by Golden and how to blend them.  I now have a comprehensive collection of fluid paint by Golden, AV/Vallejo and Liquitex.  Apart from price and some minor color differences of the same color (I made a color chart), there is not much difference in the quality.  Most of these paints are transparent which make them perfect for making layers.  The downside to fluid paints is that they tend to dry quickly and are best used in combination with glazing or open medium.  Open medium tends to extend the drying time of paint and helps with blendability.

I tried this lesson on gessoed paper to start with.  It was great for the first layer, but it took me awhile to figure out how to make it work for the final layer.  I ended up with about 4 layers instead of 2.  Using the open paints and medium on canvas is a lot easier.

This painting is more green and luminous in person than in the photograph.  I am really happy with how it turned out.

Lesson 5:  This is how it started.

IMG_4183This is the first layer and how it was supposed to go in the lesson.  The painting below is how it ended up.

IMG_4213I have no idea what happened here, but during the process I started to see things and just went with it.  This painting is actually much darker than how it photographed.  It is quite weird for me and not finished.  It needs something, but I am sitting on it to work out what I need.  The lesson should have turned out more like the painting below, but more pale blue.

Lesson 7:  This was a panel with leftover paint. 


This has turned into my ‘grunge’ painting.  There are so many layers of paint on this that I forgot how many there are.  This is also 10×12 inch canvas board.  The object of this lesson was to add and remove paint, glazing, and mark making.  

IMG_4227This painting has a lovely watery feel to it.  I finished it off with a blue glaze.

Lesson 8:  You have seen this in my previous post.

IMG_4238More layering, embedding, and mark making.  Even more grungy than the one above.

Lesson 10:  This one below is the last one from the course:

IMG_4242This is about using collage.  I went with the cruciform 🙂 on a 9×12 inch canvas.  There are a quite a few layers on here as well as I had some challenges with the buff paint and getting those areas right.  I have been using colors that I don’t normally use, but I think I will be using them more often.  I have some ideas.  There is some iridescent bronze that the camera hasn’t picked up.  I am quite happy with how this turned out.   Who knew that I would like the ‘grunge’ look?

What I learned about taking this course:

  1. Open paint takes a long time to dry.  This can be both a good thing and a bad thing.  Good, because you can work with the paint for longer and get great blending.  Bad, because I can be impatient waiting for paint to dry.  Fortunately, the weather was good these last few weeks and I was able to dry paintings in the sun.
  2. I learned how to layer properly and use the brayer.  I now understand the benefit of putting paint down and removing it in order to see the layers underneath which adds depth to the painting.  This can be time consuming, but I did find it very therapeutic.
  3. I used colors that I wouldn’t normally use.  The beauty of working with paint is that you can change your mind, and as a result, and your painting.  I used the colors suggested for the class.  Most of the color pallets are analogous, which can make a painting harmonious and relaxing.  They are not too crazy.
  4. I realized I really enjoy working in an abstract way.  Although I tried to use the same colors and techniques, my paintings did not turn out exactly the same as the instructor’s.  Not even close.  I put my own take on things based on my materials and what I felt comfortable with.  I tried things I hadn’t tried before and I really enjoyed it.
  5. I feel that my painting skills and knowledge of my products and what they can do has improved.
  6. There was absolutely nothing about this course that I did not enjoy.  I had challenges and I worked out how to overcome them.  The support that you get from the instructor is great.  I would hate for someone to tell me something is great when it isn’t.

I feel I progressed the more I worked.  This has been an unusual month for me as I have not had any contract work on and I had to take a week off to care for the dogs when my hubs went away, so I had a lot of time to paint and no excuses.  I combined this course with another course, Mixed Media Express.  So while I waited for paint to dry, I started paintings from the other course.  So it is definitely true that the more you paint, the better you get!  That is how life is too!

WIP – Mixed Media Express 1

I wasn’t going to post any class work until I was completely finished, but I wanted to let you all know that I am actually painting, and I wanted you to see what can happen with an on-line class.  I purchased the Mixed Media Express bundle with my 20% off discount that I mentioned in my previous post.  A lot of online classes have a Facebook group that you can join and this one is no exception.  There are 4 different FB groups for this bundle as there are 4 lessons.  Julie Prichard will look at your work and give you advice.  She doesn’t just say nice things for the sake of it.  Though she hasn’t said anything awful either.  She will make suggestions and it will be up to you to take her up on it or not.

In this lesson, we watch Julie make a painting.  There is a color scheme, but that is it.  The rest is off the cuff.  By watching someone else paint, one can learn so much.  I like her style, I have a book, and now I can watch her work.  I am not one for doing warm ups or making thumbnail sketches, so this is great for me.  I went with the same or similar colors for this lesson as I like them.  After that, my painting went in a completely different direction.

Here is the first stage of my painting, with a close-up.  I am working on 10×12 inch canvas board.

This is the nearly finished painting.

IMG_4229I say nearly finished as I think I could do more with the sky.  I was not intending on painting a section of The Seven Sisters, but that is how it ended up.  Here are some close-ups.

We have marks and drips and all sorts.  I was working on an abstract, but it turned into something more realistic, but in a loose way.   Sometimes that is the way it goes.  I saw something and then got into the zone.

I am still working on Layer Love 2.0 and am about half way through it.  While waiting for paint to dry, I started on the Mixed Media Express series.  It is good to have a few things on the go.  I think I may have finally found my style.  I can still paint ‘things’, but in a more abstract way and in a method that suits me better.  I really like layering and lifting off paint and using drips and drops.  I even found some other uses for my brayer and am feeling better about making marks for no reason.  And who knew that I would love green and blue so much!

Happy painting people!