Thursday 24 September 2015

Art friends...

...are the best!  These past four days were chock-a-block full of experimentation, food, wine, laughter, colour and extraordinary fun, not necessarily in that order.

Alice Saltiel and Meg Nicks , along with their other halves, 

Meg, Win, John,  & Paul watch Bill pull a Gelli print (Alice is behind the camera on this one)
spent the last few days in Creston, where we crammed in as much studio time as possible. Alice and Meg, both consummate artists, demonstrated some fabulous techniques and, as always, I learned a ton from each of them. We traded stash supplies, tips and new and exciting products.

Alice painted and tested an embossing technique (to say nothing of creating some luscious backgrounds):

while Meg primarily worked on her fabulous organic paintings in preparation for a 20-minute  upcoming paint-off benefit.

She got a bit of time to add layers to some other paintings-in-progress and tested the embossing technique as well (missed a photo of that).

We also managed a walk over to Skimmerhorn Winery to check out how the grapes were coming along (really!!!),  

a fabulous lunch at Real Food Cafe, and several other food comas. In other words, we got down and dirty in Creston, BC.

Meg and Alice
As always, it was sheer delight and I look forward to a return engagement.

Thursday 17 September 2015

I've been looking...

...around the studio for the past couple of days as I clean and prep for two artist friends' visit on the weekend.  I love it that some of the walls are lined with tags from the tag swap I've been enjoying for the past year or so on Google+.

I love the marvellous variety of them, from collages

 to drawings,

 to embossings

 and stencilled works.

 The richness of colour,

 the terrific variety of stamps,

 and the quotes all thrill me.

 I so much enjoy having these lovely little vignettes from artists around the world,

 for the inspiration they provide every day.

I enjoy the thought, too, that my tags are standing in another artist's space, likely doing the same thing.  Shared art speaks to me of shared souls, and that's what art is all about.

Thursday 3 September 2015

It's that time...

...of the year when all the trees, shrubs, grasses and leaves call to me.  Try as I might, I just cannot seem to resist their colour and texture.

This past week I picked elderberries from a tree heavy with them; it beckons every time we pass it on our walks. A large bag of stems looked as though they were ripe with promise of jelly, but that's not what I was after this year.

As much as I enjoy making and eating  that delicious tart jelly, I was truly after these gorgeous stems.

Ranging in colour from green through red to dark purple, they make elegant filigree additions to mixed media paintings.

This mandala, created with painted papers and dried, pressed stems, is a favourite of mine. The delicate etching of them is reminiscent of fine lace.

'Elderberry Mandala'  Mixed Media on hand-painted paper-covered canvas  © Win Dinn
The elderberry stems used in this painting were instrumental in bringing about its sale in Puffin Design recently.  The Alberta purchaser apparently has a particular affinity for them.

'Changing Landscape' Mixed media on canvas © Win Dinn
And of course, there is always the possibility of jelly in the offing!

Are there gifts from Mother Nature you enjoy using in your work?  Or perhaps you use her design principles instead?  I'd love to see your comments below.
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