Today was a play date. No exhibitions to plan for and no pressures to complete and so I experimented and explored different ideas and ways of shaping my artworks. I do love the potential of the transfers and will definitely do more of these. There is still a lot of work to go but here are my starting points that I developed today. I am changing details as I go as these are not meant to be portraits of specific people.
I am starting to play with transferring photos and drawings. I have put this off for ages as I kept reading about how difficult it was. Not true…it is such an easy process. I have used detailed drawings as an under painting as suggested by Kate Thompson in her fractured Angelica’s e-course. I am also using photos I have sourced on the net but have not reversed any images before transferring as the mirror image adds to the changes I want to incorporate as the image develops. I am trying old photocopies and new to see which work best for me. I found that the age of the copy didn’t matter which is great so this gives me more options to play with. I am combining so many layers of learning.
I am referring back to the mapping format suggested by Pam Carricker in her book about faces which has a few good tips that extend on other face drawing mapping techniques I have taught and used over the years.
Transfer how to…my process…
I used Monte Marta impasto medium and used a generous layer on the canvas and the front of the photocopy using a credit card to apply it.. I positioned the photocopy and used the plastic credit card to ensure good contact and removal of any air bubbles or excess medium. After about 5-10 minutes Ii carefully lifted the top layer of damp paper off in strips. The image should remain on the surface. Then I let it dry completely before wetting the surface and rubbing off the paper pulp. I am not worried about perfection as this is an under painting image and much of it will be lost in the end. How far you take this and how perfect you need it to be will depend on how long you leave it…I tend to fiddle out of curiosity and because this is a new technique for me. I don’t want perfect as this is a play zone.
To finish the transfer, I rub golden tar gel medium onto any areas with my finger so that remain milky are defined to a clear image. When dry I add a layer of clear gesso to give some tooth to the surface. These are Kate Thompson tips that worked well. I wonder how much difference there is between using clear gesso and pastel medium as both give a basic tooth to the work.
I decided the clear gesso could wait until I had added the collage layer to create a consistent base surface and this makes the material easier to work over.
My next step will be the collage background and pattern play which brings in ideas drawn from Tracy Verista and Jane Spakowsky. I am getting to a point where the mix of learning a are so fused and they simply overlay and add to my pool of ideas. Oh, of course there are all my internet finds as I play and explore and the possibilities from Lifebook 2015 that I do need to get back to. So much to explore and integrate and never enough time.The fun is seeing what happens next as art is such an explorative play for me…particularly good when there are no looming art shows, that I am creating for, and I can do my own thing…no external pressure.