2015 Topic 21: Abstract Art
Hi everyone, Jo (shabbydandelion.blogspot.co.uk) here, joining you this evening with a post about tone, depth and mark making.
Abstract Art isn't about creating an accurate representation of reality (a flower, a person, a building), but about how you use shapes, colour and marks to create pared down, simplified interpretation. Some of my favourite artists are abstract painters: Mark Rothko, Gerhard Richter, Ben Nicholson demonstrate that simplicity of tone and mark making.
Step One: On a box canvas I glued scraps of book pages all over the canvas with gel medium. when it was partially dry I started ripping sections off. I ended up with strips across the canvas. In between these strips I smeared on Grunge Paste using the palette knife to make textured areas. The Grunge Paste was dried and then lines scratched in it using a craft knife.
Step Two: The first layer of paint was Chalk, slightly watered down. Using the dot stamp from Sara Naumann's ESN08, I added some marks with Coffee Archival Ink over the text book pages.
Step Three: Over the whole canvas I painted Mud Splat (a good alternative would be London Night or Mushroom), again slightly watered down, excess paint was mopped of with a cloth to reveal parts of the stamping. Keep adding thin paint layers dark and light, mopping away areas until you get the effect you want.
Step Four: In some areas I added Chocolate Pudding using a cloth (an old flannel in my case) to wipe the paint across the canvas. Into the scratched lines I added Little Black Dress with an old toothbrush.
Step Five: To reveal more of the layers I used a sanding block quite heavily to take away colour from the book pages to reveal the text and the dot stamping. I also used it on the Grunge Paste to reveal the white splodges and texture. Some more stamping in Coffee Archival using the flower tile stamp from HP1102. I didn't use an acrylic stamping block as I didn't want a neat image, just here and there in places. I also sanded these images lightly to make them fade more into the background.
Step Six: For the reeds I coloured some calico with Spanish Mulberry and stamped the Tulip petal from ELB08 in Jet Black Archival Ink. These were glued on and stems scratched in the Grunge Paste and used a black watercolour pencil to colour in the stems and edge the reeds. White pencil was also added around the reeds. Finally I sanded the edge of the canvas a lot to reveal the white canvas.
The key to creating abstract art in this way is the thin layers of paint, layers of texture, a lot of sanding and don't think too literally! Although I've named this piece 'Two Reeds' the representational images could be figures and with there being two, is it an image of love or separation? You need to go with the flow with this kind of art, both making and interpreting.
This is fab Jo ... you have executed the textured layers beautifully allowing some of the base layer to show through. The added shading using the earth tones adds an authentic feel and the "two reeds" are a lovely representation of abstract art. Thanks for sharing your creativity with us. ~ Gillian
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