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Creating large-scale wall collages for a solo show in the space of my dreams.
Creating large-scale wall collages for a solo show in the space of my dreams.
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42 backers pledged $1,273 to help bring this project to life.

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I'm using some new paper. It's soft press rather than cold press. So the paper is smoother and lets the paint sit on top of it for a while before it absorbs. I like the smoothness. For a while I've resisted the smooth paper, but now I'm into it.

I also bought some new paints. Holbein Antique Watercolors. They're suppose to be traditional chinese colors. A lady at the store showed them to me, and I figured I'd give it a shot. I'm trying to use more vibrant colors. Lately I feel like I've relied too much on pure black and browns. Need some new life!

I've also started drawing out the image with light pastel and painting from there. And let me tell ya, i'm hooked. I feel like it gives me so much more freedom in the painting. I put the pastel on a long stick so I can stand back while I draw. This has really made a difference in the proportions. It's not that it has made the translation more proportionally accurate. But it has given the large pieces the same loose confident quality. Big difference. I also like that the chalk lines resist the watercolor, so I get some nice streaks that break things up.

But here's the part where I'm having problems:

I love this paper so much. It's smoother and doesn't buckle. The roll is 10 inches wider than the kind I used to get, so now I have more room to paint...

Annnnnnnnnnnnnd now I don't want to cut them up. 

I started cutting them up initially to make the images bigger and to help me translate each piece of the drawing into a painting. But now I feel like I understand how to do that. The cutting up helped me a lot. It allowed me to slow down and manage each piece of the image. But now I understand how to do that and can't resist my urge to keep building on one piece of paper until the whole image is complete.

I'm not sure what to do about that. Because it feels really right and I feel like these last two paintings have been a major breakthrough. They're better than my paintings before the cut outs, and they're better than any of the cut outs i've made so far.

I want to commit to this collage project, but I don't want to deny what feels right. So I'm going to feel these next few pieces out and make them as solid as I can as a single piece. After a few solid single pieces I'm going to try another collage. 

I believe that these single pieces will inform the new collages and perhaps make them stronger than before. 

Fingers crossed!

Pictures soon!

Sending out rewards!

$10 rewards are going out today. $25 and higher will be sent out after the weekend. I need time to make more pastel studies.  :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) 

NYC & More

I didn't take many pictures with me while I was on the trip. It felt like I didn't really need to, that I'd remember what's important. But, I do regret not having more pics to show you guys!

My trip was awesome. The first two days were spent in New Haven, with a friend of mine who is getting his MFA at Yale. I'm interested in applying to the school, so it was great to be able to finally see it and get some perspective. It wasn't as intimidating as I imagined. Most of the people I met were friendly and a lot of the work I saw didn't feel like it came from some far off planet. So that was reassuring. At times it had an air of arrogance, but I feel like that's to be expected with most art schools :P

The rest of my trip was spent in NYC. I went to the reunion of a program I did in spring of 2009. I was excited to see fellow alumni of the program, as well as the faculty and director. My favorite part of the whole trip was spending time with my two best friends that I went to school with, my friend at Yale and my best girl friend who still lives in Florida. I also got to meet with a lot of other old friends from school. It made me miss the community I once had.

Overall though it allowed me to confirm that NYC isn't a city I want to live in anytime soon or maybe ever. Even though it had been a big question in my mind over the years. For the most part it just felt like too much. Too much money for too little time to work on art or enjoy yourself. In many ways it didn't seem worth the hype.

I think there are better options for artists today. It isn't necessary that we all go to the same schools and cram ourselves into the same inflated cities. I like the idea of becoming your own center and living a life that hasn't already been lived.


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March Pics

Its the post you've all been waiting for!

In the beginning of this month I decided to lay out all the pieces I've made for the show so far. Its easy for me to forget what I've made, because I keep all the pieces clipped together in a stack on the wall.

I redid part of the piece thats in my kickstarter video. The body just wasn't looking right and I knew it needed to be larger and more simplified. You can see all my scraps raging on the left. They started taking up like 1/4 of my floor space.

Afterward I thought it would be a good idea to go ahead and clean up my studio, since it was starting to become more like a giant scrap storage than a work space. 

Above are all the things I took out of my studio and moved into my basement. I even organized my scraps by whether or not they've been painted on. Just by putting them into bags saved me sooo much space.

I've started working on these big head pieces.

I started doing these because the face is the funnest part for me to paint, and I feel like there's usually too much time in between being able to paint a face (since the body usually takes so long). I think by making a lot of faces in rapid succession I'll be able to make a lot more progress on how I can paint the face. I think I'll dedicate a whole roll to just whipping out faces just to see where it can lead me.

Above and below are examples of how they'll be cut out. I don't want to cut the edge of the paper right against the figure like I've been doing with the full body pieces. I want these faces to have some space around them to breath.

I've also been experimenting with ways to support the cut outs with paper rather than styrofoam. It seems more natural to do, and I like that I can use it as another element of the painting rather than just some ugly functional support.

It's funny looking back at these pictures, because a lot of these pieces have already changed or have been ruined. haha. Like the one directly above, I think I may have ruined it shortly after this picture was taken. But, at the same time I've learned a lot while ruining them so it's all for the greater good.

This (below) is the most current picture, I took it just tonight. I had enough paper to just make one more face. I did this one with a different approach than the others. I drew out a very light and loose sketch of the face with chalk before starting the painting. 

I'm interested in approaching it more like this. I find that it allows me to have more freedom and speed while painting, rather than having to grope the form with each mark. It actually makes it look a lot more realistic and less cartoony, which makes me feel somewhat uneasy. 

I tend to get uneasy when I feel like my drawings/paintings don't look "consistent".I feel like I'm constantly trying to find the ONE AND ONLY way to paint something, but never can.

I had a friend once tell me that we're constantly trying to "fix our drawing", but if we ever actually did succeed in "fixing our drawing" we would be finished and our drawing would be dead.

I feel like I've been living by that ever since. It keeps me going.