Cosmic Goddesses

I am a rebel! Yeah, you heard me correctly!!  I BREAK RULES!!!

If I lack the desire to paint seven or so individual faces the size of a quarter, then I don’t do it. I simplify figures when I’m sleep deprived; yes, hands and feet, this means you! I WILL develop female figurines who have NO hair, small boobs,  healthy hips & thighs and ample buttocks! Take that, Hollywood beauty standards!!

Art pushes boundaries and breaks rules on a constant, near religious basis. And if I don’t feel like it, I won’t follow the rules when it comes to mixing media, either! Water- based media and oil-based media don’t mix?! Tell that to Caran D’Ache and their Neocolor water-soluble crayons, or to a good 2/3 of my paintings and at least 1/2 of my prints from last semester! (Don’t tell Beidler I printed them right on top of each other, though; she’d have a conniption. SHHHHH! :P)

Ahem.

I sort of just attacked a canvas with some black paint. It used to bear a image of the Earth crying from a couple years ago but I had never completed that picture and decided in the end to just scrap it and start over. So I turned Earth into a random blue planet, and EPIPHANY! Why not have women figures supporting/shaping and forming the universe? According to my African traditional religions class last semester, women are divine sources of ccreative energy and wisdom. (And some folks said they never learned anything. Hmph.)

I did something minor and huge at the same time. I had these globes which were supposed to form cool patterns on the surface of my planets–but how to duplicate it?

I had to make the acrylic run and drip in a couple of smears and directional lines. Acrylic  (a water-based paint a molecule or two away from plastic–or straight plastic)  + Corn oil = separation of pigment and its binder, which leads to really brilliant effects when mixed on tissue paper.

These glass globes inspire the planets

This “illegal” mixture is best seen on Aoi (Japanese for blue) and Verde. Yes, I named my planets; they’re my creation and definitely cute enough!

In retrospect, I could have let the blue planet remain detailed (It was much more green than blue) and allow the silhouettes to remain unfilled. Perhaps in the future, I will create this image again, much larger and with more details in the cosmos, including comets, stars, and other astral bodies. I may even add stars to the work presently done…so the planets don’t seem like vague, random spheres.

Que sera, sera. I think it’s brilliantly executed for an all-nighter.

 

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Sister Mary Corita Makes the Most Noise

Broad Strokes: The National Museum of Women in the Arts' Blog

“Productive.” “Energetic.” “Joyous.” “Selfless.” “Creative.”

These words have often been used to describe Sister Mary Corita (later Corita Kent, 1918–1986). A deeply spiritual woman, she used art as a platform to display her messages of love, happiness, and God. Her artistic mission was to seek joy and beauty in ugly places, like everyday consumer slogans; however, she was also influenced by her religion, politics, and other artists, especially the ones who “made the most noise.”¹ According to her close friend, Reverend Robert Giguere, of the Society of Saint Sulpice, Sister Mary Corita struggled to strike a balance between her art and her religious practice. However, her two roles fed each other, and although she later left the sisterhood, she said, “I probably would never have taken up art seriously if I hadn’t become a nun.”² Her vibrant voice and artwork can be witnessed now at NMWA in R(ad)ical Love: Sister…

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Introducing…Joi the Magnificent!

I’m on a portrait kick. Sue me.

I started a portrait a few days back of my absolute favorite picture of my mother (since I’m painting everyone else’s mom, why not?!).

She’s in this stylish gold dress-jumper thing, sitting in a wicker peacock chair, looking very glamorous and joyful. It’s my personal favorite because I can see how each of my siblings resembles her; it’s sort of like the holograms u tilt and see a totally different picture, right? Well, in this photo, sometimes I see me, othertimes I see Kia or QJ, and Elon–well, she inherited ALL possible girliness! 😀

But I digress. This piece took the usual: tissue paper, acrylic, patience, creativity and hours of details. One of my goals this summer is to significantly lessen the amount of time it takes me to paint ONE 16″ x 20″–even when I’m doing 2 or 3 at a time, as I did with this one. (“Still Standing” got completely revamped–and by that, I mean I switched color schemes for her skin and finished both hands :D)

Faces have detailed features. Smaller faces require tiny brushes to nail all those features correctly; it is also best to mix colors in ASAP as opposed to letting layers dry. What took the most time was the nose, because it had to be as close to the real thing as possible; otherwise, I may as well have painted myself or Aunt Marquena, Mom’s twin.

Mom, who did as mothers do and peeked in on me from time to time, told me some details I really wouldn’t have been able to garner from the 4″ square photo unless I looked REALLY closely, without my glasses: She was wearing a pearl necklace with matching pearl earrings, a garnet-onyx ring, a topaz ring, &a gold band on her right hand, and a navy blue handbag. She also requested that I upgrade the chair so the portrait didn’t look dated. Thanks Mom!

And so, without further ado, please enjoy this slideshow!! 😀

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Portrait Trio part 3: Ethereal

(A photo cannot, CANNOT do this piece justice. It’s not 2D, for one thing. It’s super shiny, for another. But that’s just me.)

For certain holidays, I create custom pieces tailored to the personality of whoever made the request or is being thus given a present. It’s a process that has its own rewards…

For Mother’s Day this year, I was asked to make 2 portraits, one for my maternal grandmother Nana, who turned 70 May 13th (!), and one for my cousins’ mother Ms. Monica, who turned 50 on June 7th.

So my cousin Jo was to send me the photos I was to work from at least a week and a half in advance in order for everything to be done on time (I had finals, ya know). I made 2 portraits of Ms. Monica, compelled by the strength of the two images.

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What I learned:

  •  Portraits can be tedious because they are done in layers. I painted the lightest layers first before blending in darker and more subtle tones later.
  • Because of aforementioned tediousness, it is EXTREMELY helpful to work on multiple pieces at the same time. I was doing 4 16″x20″ paintings at the same time.
  •      Faces, with all their nuances, highlights, &shadows created merely by bone structure and age, are fascinating. Older people are fun to draw/paint! Wrinkles and gray hairs are signs of wisdom and character 🙂
  • For me, in order to capture the likeness of the person, the eyes are SO IMPORTANT!!

New Media!! I officially LOVE tissue paper!!! Yes, tissue paper, tenderhearted gift wrap, the lining of shoe boxes and packages! It can be manipulated with mere paint, glue and a paintbrush–or fingers–and layered to recreate the textures of clothing. Or anything, really, including feathers as was the case here.

“Ethereal” is possibly one of the best pieces I have ever created, if only because it’s beautiful AND proportionally correct 🙂 36+ hours of work, some frenzied hours of pasting, twisting, brushing and hot-gluing aluminum foil, silver beads, plastic gemstones and wire to create an earring, swirling black, bronze, gold, yellow ochre, red and green to “curl” hair on her head.

Portrait Trio part 2: Young Money

For certain holidays, I create custom pieces tailored to the personality of whoever made the request or is being thus given a present. It’s a process that has its own rewards…

For Mother’s Day this year, I was asked to make 2 portraits, one for my maternal grandmother Nana, who turned 70 May 13th (!), and one for my cousins’ mother Ms. Monica, who turned 50 on June 7th.

So my cousin Jo was to send me the photos I was to work from at least a week and a half in advance in order for everything to be done on time (I had finals, ya know).

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  •    What I learned: Portraits can be tedious because they are done in layers. I painted the lightest layers first before blending in darker and more subtle tones later.
  •      Faces, with all their nuances, highlights, &shadows created merely by bone structure and age, are fascinating. Older people are fun to draw/paint! Wrinkles and gray hairs are signs of wisdom and character 🙂
  • For me, in order to capture the likeness of the person, the eyes are SO IMPORTANT!!

I am working on my proportions, though, specifically the spacing between the eyes, and the distance from the top of the head to the chin…Otherwise, I’m satisfied with the final product.

to be continued…

Portrait Trio part 1: Nana B

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I love gifts and family. For certain holidays, I create custom pieces tailored to the personality of whoever made the request or is being thus given a present. It’s a process that has its own rewards…

For Mother’s Day this year, I was asked to make 2 portraits, one for my maternal grandmother Nana, who turned 70 May 13th (!), and one for my cousins’ mother Ms. Monica, who turned 50 on June 7th.

So my cousin Jo was to send me the photos I was to work from at least a week and a half in advance in order for everything to be done on time (I had finals, ya know). Here is the original photo:

  •    What I learned: Portraits can be tedious because they are done in layers. I painted the lightest layers first before blending in darker and more subtle tones later.
  •      Faces, with all their nuances, highlights, &shadows created merely by bone structure and age, are fascinating. Older people are fun to draw/paint! Wrinkles and gray hairs are signs of wisdom and character 🙂
  • For me, in order to capture the likeness of the person, the eyes are SO IMPORTANT!!

I am working on my proportions, though, specifically the spacing between the eyes, and the distance from the top of the head to the chin…Otherwise, I’m satisfied with the final product.

to be continued…