Some of my students have been asking me about my creative process. Since I am about to begin teaching a new online class I thought writing a post about my preliminary procedures would help students of my unique "fearless" methods get started. If you know me, you know that my inspirational techniques begin with an adventurous paint pouring process similar to the techniques used by the artists Helen Frankenthaler or Jackson Pollock.
My creativity begins with a series of adventurous watercolor pours, but my work has entirely different style. In the pouring process that I use, there is a lot of splashing, dribbling and generally making a big fun mess which allows me to mingle colorful washes with passion and imagination resulting in what I call “Fearless” painting.” Some of my work is abstract and some is quite representational.
If you have visited my art galleries you will see that my subject matter is a mixture of inspiration, photography and paint which cause a fusion of representation and abstraction.
In the artwork shown above, "Reaching for the Wind" © is an abstract painting but with a representational marine themed twist. A lot of my art begins with the photos that I take in my journeys, even if the finished art is somewhat abstract.
In all of my work, I still enjoy beginning with what I call a road map. I like to make as many choices about what and how I am going to paint prior to allowing my paints to hit the surface of my paper or canvas. When I am creating a representational painting, like of the 1952 Caddilac below, I must be very exact as to the placement of subject and background. This requires drawing skills.
These types of realistic works require me to create a complete drawing of the image to be painted. In my work, I project my ideas onto either my watercolor paper or canvas using an opaque projector. I spend a lot of time paying close attention to the details required to make my visual statements and the projection process is just one step of many in the my creative process.
Let's begin with a little history. There are many different methods of transferring an image to one's painting surface,using projection is just one that has a long history. We know that as far back as the Renaissance, Artists have used photographic projectors, similar to the one I currently use, like the "Camera Obscura" or "Camara Lucida". The 15th century German artist Albrecht Durer used a plate of glass and a grid to help him realize the correct lines for perspective drawing, as you can see in the artist's etching.
In the 19th century the French artist Edgar Degas was both familiar with the early methods of photography but also utilized elements of photography to help him understand the movements of the dancers and race horses that he painted.
There are many other graphic artist tricks of the trade used by artist to facilitate the copying of lines, shapes and forms. One convenient tool is to use a graphite transfer paper. In my copying process , I recommend and use a product called Seral Transfer paper, which is available at most quality art supply retailers.
As a teacher and person who works to inspire others to be fearless artists, I try to simplify my methods so that anyone can enjoy their own creative process. I know that sometimes availability of a product is not possible,therefore adaptation is required. Recently, I created a short video to assist my students with a method of making one's own copying paper. This method will allow beginner artists to use and copy their favorite photos for their painting inspiration.
For this project the materials that will be used for an 8 x 10 canvas or watercolor paper are:
1 sheet of white 8.5 x 11 paper ( or match the size of your paper to the size you want your painting to be.)
1 soft carbon pencil like a 3B or 4 B
1 photo of choice
1 painting surface such as watercolor paper or a canvas
Now let's watch a short video:
If the video does not open, please click here to go to my Youtube video about how to make your own transfer copying paper
I hope this short tutorial helps you get started drafting out and creating your own masterpiece. In my next post, I will be sharing a new video and writing about the methods I used in creating the small demo painting ( shown below) done for one of my classes.
Until next time,Stay well my creative friends,
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My name is Elise Beattie and they call me the Fearless Artist. I paint, I teach and I promote all aspects of the arts. In this new blog site you will find a variety of creative posts dedicated to sharing knowledge about my fearless art techniques and the materials that I use. You will also be able to learn about my art classes and see photos of my newest art and the exhibitions that my work is displayed in.