The Aftermath of The Painting Storm: A Mixed Media Blessing

Right now I am in my studio struggling with a HUGE painting I am working on. I'm out of my comfort zone and wondering just how many layers of paint this piece can take before the painting weeps in agony. (Or maybe it is just me weeping in agony). The ability to stick with a project through thick and thin (no pun intended) took me years to learn. At certain points I have actually "attacked" my painting in a frenzy of heightened frustration. After all, if you are at your wits end, why not go ahead and "ruin it" ! Interestingly enough, some great things happen after these painting storms. The splashes of paint, the drips, the bold strokes seem to add just the right touches to reawaken a piece that was previously viewed as hopeless and that we wonder if we should kiss goodbye.     

In Mixed Media Collage: Don't Fall In Love With Your First Layer

It is not unusual for me to start off a collage in one palette and to end in a completley diffrent zone. During one of my recent sessions in my art studio, I was working in soft cream colors, only to leave the studio with an incomplete piece that ended with shades of aquamarine and dark blues. One thing is for sure, never fall in love with your first layer. And if there are papers that you really are keen on, don't use them in the early phases of your piece, because if you work like most of us, these pieces will eventually become buried with newer layers. I also have learned through the years not to be too careful when covering my support with the first layer. Just let it go....the piece will eventually emerge that wants to be found.