Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Goodies from Creative Catalyst Productions

The goodies from Creative Catalyst got here in time for the weekend! I've been watching the dvds on and off for the last few days.
Here is the list:

Polly Hammett "Design with the figure"
A detailed step-by-step description of the process she uses, from line drawing of the model to the final painting. I especially liked the discussion about composition (I am really weak at this, my training is in engineering after all) and the use of value sketches. I will try to use some of her tips when I will move to bigger size paintings. I liked also the fact that she is not influenced by the real color of the objects. She says that doing that will take away from her being in charge of the painting process. She also uses distortion, but just enough to add emphasis on certain aspects of the model.

Ann Baldwin "Telling stories in collage and paint"
I found Ann's website a while back, don't remember how. I like her abstract paintings and the series of collages she based on Proust. She used to be a literature teacher until she gave that up to be an artist full time. I am always impressed (and jealous I have to confess) when I read about people who managed to find what they like doing in life and have been successull enough to make a living out of it. Plus, she managed to bridge the two things that I like: literature and painting. Some of the general information I knew already (about glazes, texture etc). What I wanted was to see how she develops a collage as a composition and how she creates unity and finds the story that the piece represents. In my case, I make something (either collage or assemblage pieces) and then try to find the story in it. She starts in reverse - when she selects the images and text, the story is already theren the collage is piecing it together and adding emphasis.

Anne Bagby "Paper, patterns and galzing"
I love her faces and the pattern in her papers is exquisite. One thing that it was not clear to me in the dvd is if she sketches the faces from memory or if they come from other sources (photos etc). She makes all her papers using deli paper as a base.
I tried making some using also tracing paper, coffee filters and napkins from the cofee shop. They all worked to a certain extent, I suppose it all depends of the look one wants in the finished piece. In the process of making the paper, I realized the importance of a good, deep cut rubber stamp. I tried store bought stamps - lame results because the cut was not deep enough. the best results I had using eraser stamps I cut myself. They were small so it took a while to cover the papers. S on my to do list now I have a new tsk - finding an image suited to a bigger stamp that I can cut myself. As for the process of creating her paintings, I will probably try it in my journal or altered book, but it will be too similar to hers. I will use the paper though and I will probably make some more.