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Womandrake in Progress:

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Welcome All in 2012!!!

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Winter's heating up…

and I’ve been buzzing around the studio to get footage for the first installment of the Sinister Stitch Project.

Monkshood paintedThis underpainting is for Monkshood. I LOVE the way the blue tones interact. I added a second bloom today.

monkshood double paintedand had great fun looking up old herbal grimoires and poison garden lore to use in the sketchbookery notes that will accompany the whole project.

I’m still experimenting with how to work the stitching, but will definitely do a beard and hair like in the original drawing.

Monk A c

and… yipes. Who knew that planning and documenting a HUGE project would be such an ‘effin NIGHTMARE!!!!  From rigging elaborate camera tripod contraptions to storyboarding my creativity (like trying to capture water in a seive…) it’s been a real exercise in “making it work”.  It doesn’t help that my freakin’ cat needs to wreck everything I set up… moshi on page

or EAT every thread I lay out to use… it’s gonna be a loooong year.

I’ve been working on ways to fill in color and to evoke texture in the foliage,AND to really stretch my knowledge of what’s possible with paint.

Today I am LOVING the way watercolor pencil shavings break down in a water puddle on the muslin:

green shavings for leaves

I’ve charted a course from start to finish and it looks like the Womandrake will take 9 1/2 months to complete.  I’ve finished the initial sketches, and am combining a technique tool kit for beginning the base layer.  Now if I can keep the camera rolling I’m really thinking this will be a great debut at the MO Fiber Artists event next fall.

And now, for a word from my Grouch: I knew that committing to being an artist was going to test me, my resolve, my confidence, and my willingness to suffer… but CRAP! I am SO tired of stressing out about financial challenges… stressing about HOW to make this documentary work… tired of worrying about how to keep diversifying my retail line, my impending project pitch & production schedule, managing my teaching commitments against what I still NEED to schedule just to break even… does ANYone else feel this?????  I am exhausted when I wake up because I already feel overwhelmed. I am exhausted when I go to bed because I sleep under the looming shadow of what’s yet to be developed and delivered… I. Am. So. Tired.

Knowing that YOU all are out there… listening… caring… it really is fortifying. All those little clicks count… Just knowing that there is someone who gets it… that there are people who care about art, and creativity.  And those who follow me are such a strength when I’m running on paint fumes… I’m ranting, but I am so frustrated. It’s been a really hard week. So, the point is: Thank You. Thank you all who watch, and check in on what I’m up to, and attend my classes, and ask questions that push me to discover & explain things, and send me your friends for tutorials or classes because you had such a great experience… just Thank You.  In this season when so many people have so little to share, I am so very grateful for the boundless energy that you all return to me with the precious moments of attention you afford me. I do try to educate, entertain, and hopefully inspire — and will KEEP doing it, bigger, better, and more beautiful than before!!

Here’s a peek at the development of the main foliage of the Womandrake as I’ve pinned the stencil on for transfer:

Womandrake leaves 1She’s looking to be about 4 feet tall in total, with plenty of atmospheric background and border. I’m excited to get going again…

For a little quickie on whether gel medium or gesso makes a better ground for watercolor pencil, look here *LINK*

And for a little cautionary tale about how I learned the hard way to work this next BIG project with careful attention to my BIG needles, check out “Hell on TOEst” — makes my toe hurt just thinking about it… *LINK*

Get the whole Sinister Stitch story here *LINK*

Thanks again dear readers… it’s off to the studio.

1 comment to Winter's heating up…

  • I admire you for doing it and I know you will pull it off beautifully. I was asked to provide a (VERY VERY simple) pattern for an upcoming book and I didn’t even know where to start YIKES!!!!!!!

    I here you about the the financial challenges, been there and that by itself is exhausting. Sending my support.

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