Monotypes and the Case for Paint

WeatheredWoodDoorFrame, originally uploaded by carolsLittleWorld.

Ok, so maybe this door looks more like it needs a case *of* paint, not really the case *for* paint, but, you know, why throw around your weight in pigment and latex when you don’t have to (I guess.)

Today I was fortunate enough to attend a workshop on encaustic monotypes over at Jerry’s Art-a-rama. I really hate that place, since it’s very expensive and manages to suck every last drop out of my wallet, but still the workshop was well worth it. I learned a lot and it was very informative, though I’m not really a printmaker, not by any stretch. Though I’ve got quite the paper fetish, I just don’t have it in me. They lose me on the whole printing press thing-it’s just too hard and complicated for me to really sink my teeth into at this point in time.

So, it was an afternoon filled with “ghosts” and “substrates” and people from Flatbed Press who all seem to know each other and probably manage to lithograph several Gutenberg Bibles in their spare time, all the while watching re-runs of “I Love Lucy” and baking fresh red velvet sheet cakes. Meanwhile, I’ve never been one who can do more than one thing at a time-the whole “walk and chew bubble gum” thing? Yes, that sometimes escapes me. (Letting me within spitting distance of a large press type machine that could take an arm off? Not really all that good of an idea, trust me.)

One of the lucky things, I guess, about being a photographer is that, hey, we’re naturally at the bottom of the artistic “food chain” as it were (nobody wants to be us when they grow up and we barely have a foot-in-the-door in gallery row as it is) so we seldom, if ever, have to fight for our spot in the artistic “pecking order.” That can make it nice when working with the printmaking folks, since they are sort of kicked around (sometimes) by the “Stand aside-I work in OILS, a *REAL* medium” crowd almost as much as we photogs, though maybe they do manage a bit more self-respect in the end. Still, the workshop was fun, and it was great to see how monotypes could be pulled and coupled with the encaustic paint. Since I’ve started working with encaustics, I’ve realized how much there is to learn about the media and it’s great getting to see firsthand how it can be used in so many different ways.

In between all of this, I did manage to complete an encaustic piece myself. It’s not what I wanted it to be, mind you, but it’s finished and I (almost) have to say I sort of like it. It doesn’t look like what I was expecting, but it’s done and I might scan in it and post it at some point. I was paper-offensive and used not true printmaking paper, but something I like to call “el-cheap-o” watercolor paper. (The el-cheap-o portion comes from the fact that it was in the sale bucket at Jerry’s and, hey, who am I to argue with a price reduction, right? Especially at that joint.)

I’m being lazy and trying to avoid laying out some gesso on the latest boards I’ve got. I need to get gesso-ing pretty soon though, because I’d like the stuff to dry so that I can actually paint tomorrow, rather than yap about it all over the Internet (but not actually do anything about the issue.) If that were not enough, I’m slated to have one small piece finished by December 5th which, though this sounds eons away, is really not that far off, trust me. Especially not given the speed at which I’ve been able to work which is, well, let’s just say James May could snore faster than I’ve been painting lately (and leave it at that.)

Yes, yes, I know, time to go get my thumbs all brightly colored once again.

Until next time…

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