I finally did it. I took the plunge and decided to explore alcohol ink.
Since joining instagram two years ago I discovered and started following my favorite artists using alcohol inks. The fluidity, globular, diaphanous, featherlike, dripping, vibrant, and windblown qualities of alcohol inks were just too compelling. So I spent the last few weeks weeks studying Youtube how-to videos, learned some techniques and decided to offer a workshop using them.
The class was well attended and luckily for my students and myself, we found there’s almost no way to go wrong.
That is to say, you can go WRONG if you try to CONTROL them. Believe me… I have tried!
Using alcohol inks offers the ultimate opportunity of letting go and remaining non-attached to outcome. One really has to stop trying to control the outcome and allow the medium to express itself. Results are beautiful, unexpected and best when we just let alcohol ink do what it does without forcing it. One has to let it flow, expand, bloom, merge, drip, dry and do what the medium does, without fussing or trying to make it do something specific. It’s harder to control than watercolor at the level of experience I have now, but I suspect it will always lend itself to the truly unpredictable.
That’s why it’s so fun. The vibrancy of the colors are also exciting. I am challenged to explore alcohol ink further and perhaps take it beyond making just another pretty abstract painting.
I finally did it. I took the plunge and decided to explore alcohol ink.
This week marks the first 2019 art workshop I led in Intuitive Painting using Watercolor. My commitment for this year is to offer a monthly art workshop in my studio in Hawaii. Sharing the creative process and encouraging others in their artistic pursuits is as important to me as an artist as it is to do my own artwork.
This week we worked with the circle as a format. I have found that the circle lends itself to abstraction more than the rectangle. The rectangle is ubiquitous, the shape that we so often choose in making art that we don’t even question it form. Most paintings are done on rectangular shaped canvases or rectangular pieces of paper. Even the shape of our computer screens, tablets and phones are all rectangular. Our eyes are saturated by seeing and reading in rectangle format.
The circle is less commonly used in art and therefore offers a bit more of a surprise. There is less to associate in the circle with previous forms of art. The circle is a wonderful choice in formats because it lends itself to abstraction. There is no implied vertical or horizontal and it can be tilted and seen at any angle. I was pleased to see the beautiful paintings and creative exploration in this Sunday’s workshop. Stay posted as I will be offering first Sundays each month as dates for my painting workshops for 2019. See Workshops
The last two weeks went by so fast teaching at Hui No’Eau on Maui. Both the watercolor and the abstract painting workshops were full, and the students that attended were an amazing group of creatively inspired adults who sought to expand and explore their creative potential. I feel so grateful and honored to have been invited to Maui to teach at the Hui. I look forward to return visits. After all I’m just an island away.
To be able to travel, paint and teach art has been a goal of mine for quite some time.
So being invited to teach art in Maui at the Hui No’Eau is truly a dream come true.
Just a few months after moving to the Big Island of Hawaii last year, I was contacted by Hui No’Eau to come teach my workshops there as a visiting island artist. The school is a nonprofit, community art school in Maui, situated on one of the historic Baldwin estates. It has a view of Haleakala to one side and the distant coast to the other side. It’s upcountry, surrounded by rolling hills, lush vegetation and meadows. The school itself is set on 22 acres with a variety of buildings for arts and craft disciplines. The main gallery shows work by contemporary artists and the classes are well attended.
Yes.. it’s real. I taught my first workshop this weekend at Hui No’Eau called Tropical Expressions using Watercolor and Collage. It was a full class and so much fun to teach. Sharing my knowledge and inspiring others to tap into their creativity is truly my ultimate dream. Next weekend I teach abstract painting using acrylics on paper.
During the week my plan is to reconnect with island friends and paint, paint and paint. Maui is first island of the Hawaiian islands that I visited and first island I loved. The Big Island is where my soul lives now but Maui is still one fabulous place to visit.
Aloha! I was so happy to teach watercolor again here on the Big Island. It was the first workshop I gave since I moved to Hawaii. I welcomed new students and was thrilled to have returning students as well. Some had experience painting with watercolor and others were painting for the very first time. Everyone enjoyed trying some new techniques that I demonstrated and discovered how fun it is to play with this colorful and fluid medium. Students created lovely images during a very rainy afternoon. Fortunately we had use of a large, light-filled studio so that we could spread out and stay dry despite the afternoon deluge. I’ll be offering continued workshops so please check my Workshop schedule for art classes I will be teaching here on the island.
Watercolor & Collage Workshop
After a demonstration showing some basic watercolor techniques, my students experimented with watercolor by painting from observation or by simply playing with the medium to see what it could do. The second half of the workshop they then recycled their artwork by creating collages with the paintings. This became a process in balancing control with releasing control, allowing for an entirely unpredictable outcome. As usual, I learned from my students as they revealed their unique creative skills and vision that they offered to the class.
Thanks Marie for showing how blowing through a drinking straw spreads color in fun linear patterns. I was the last to learn a simple trick that most kids learn in school.
My student Kieran had a natural ability to express himself boldly in his first abstract painting workshop. Here he is working on an exercise in repetitive shapes. It will be interesting to see how he develops his own marks and vocabulary, and how it will inform his representational artwork. Click to see other art workshops and student work from past workshops.
Abstract Painting Workshop
Fresh back from an exciting painting workshop in Maine where I spent 5 days immersed in abstract painting within a structured artist residency that combined yoga with expressive painting. I embraced the basic concepts of composition while the movement of my body, the paint and the brushes became my guide. These paintings and drawings were done on paper and canvas using acrylic paint, and a variety of mark makers. I look forward to seeing where an emphasis on automatic painting will lead me. Flowers are appearing and I hope my art continues to blossom!
Go with the Flow ~ Encouraging Playfulness with Watercolor
Yesterday I offered my very first painting and collage workshop in Hawaii. Eighteen students showed up eager to explore watercolor as a new medium and expand their painting skills. I demonstrated watercolor techniques and later revealed to my students how they could collage their paintings and discover many wonderful and unexpected surprises. The emphasis was on process and self discovery.
I felt honored that we were able to use the late Arthur Johnsen’s art studio. It’s a large and beautiful, light filled space infused with Arthur’s energy. I believe everyone there felt inspired by the creative spirit and artistic legacy he left behind.
Everyone truly had fun. I look forward to offering another workshop in drawing before I leave the island.