I May Have Learned a Thing or Two

9 Jun

Pouring paint – Lessons Learnedand there are quite a few.   Or what no to do when pouring paintings!

  1. Fine lines are really tough to accomplish with masking fluid – think about avoiding hair (just kidding)
  2. You need patience and a lot of it in order to apply fine lines of masque
  3. Removing a lot of masking compound can give you serious blisters on your fingertips when you use them to rub off the stuff  (bad idea)
  4. Maybe doing a poured painting (or two) of a goat was not such a good idea
  5. Staining pigments should be applied last as subsequent colors do not “stick” or cover as well
  6. Some of my favorites such as the beautiful quin burnt ochers and oranges fall into the category above
  7. And oh, you can ruin a poured painting with a pour when the pigment is too intense or very dark

Pop Of Color

So why do them?

Poured painting are plain outright FUN!

I love to see how the poured paintings develop.  The burst of new colors are exciting – seeing where the puddles form and the trailing rivers of pigment may flow. This process provided the painter with a little thrill there as there is a certain element of risk and loss of control.  And the finished effect is very interesting, very rich in color and very satisfying.  It is not everyday that you can write a sentence with three “very’s” in it.

Toss the Old Goat – and Apparently the New One Too!

2 Jun

Somethings are just not meant to be a poured painting.  I even have blisters on two fingers from this painting – and well, the old goat has been shredded – and the new goat will not be far behind!

Helen Shideler  Old Goat painting

 

Every now and then it happens.  And I knew it as it was happening.  But for some reason I forged ahead.  Not once but TWICE!!!!  ARRRRRGGGG!!!!! With each step I questioned myself.  With each pour I asked what are you doing?  And I still proceeded.  As the painting developed it was well, ok.  Well, I don’t do ok.  The height of mediocrity is not nor has ever been my goal.  I strive for strong, well-executed work! Work that I can hang with a level of confidence and not have to explain away.  That is what makes me tick.  And yet I plodded on hoping that the end result would fare better than what I was watching develop.

Helen Shideler poured water color

I completed five pours on this Old Goat and just six on the New Goat (you can see how I feel about it by how I am referencing it), removed the masquing compound and really look at it.  It was ok. That word again.  Once the masque was off, it was really clear to me how to improve it.  Tear it up and burn it baby burn it!

Start over I said.  And start over I did.  This time I was able to achieve a thinner line of masque for the hair and included a background of sort. Crop in closer to the goat’s face  creating a better composition and more interest in the overall work.  And still I am completely not satisfied – two paintings for the fire pit!

Note to self: Plan your work more carefully.  Just plan your work.  Lesson re-learned for now.  Haste does make waste!

Is this ever a position you find yourself in?

 

Commission – Just Delivered

29 May

Helen Shideler- Heather's Path

This painting is a commission from a girl I went to school with.  Because of certain “life happenings” that we sort of have in common,  she reached out to me to paint a special piece for a very special someone in her life.  This is quite an honor for me to have been able to work with her on this project.

She was very specific.  Although she did not realize it at the time, she really had a clear image of what she was looking for, in terms of how she wanted it to feel.  She just was unable to clearly articulate it at first.

We exchanged a number of emails.  I sent her almost every image I had ever taken of  paths in the woods one or two at a time.  This worked very well.  The feedback she shared as she reacted to the various photos helped me to narrow it down to a sense of colours and the overall feeling.

Then I began the work. Irises from my garden.  A Rhododendron from my garden and two from the internet.  The rail fence from a photo I had taken of the Irving Nature Park etc., etc,

She saw the painting today for the first time and she smiled from ear to ear.  It was exactly what she was hoping for. May I just say PHEW! I am so grateful and excited that she loves it and has confidence that the recipient of her very thoughtful gift will also love it!

I am anxiously awaiting the reaction.

 

while in Vancouver- two WIPs

24 May

While visiting my new grandson in this amazing city, I am still working away.  This year is very busy with art obligations (love them all) as they keep me focus and productive, even when the sun is shining.  This is the mid point of these two poured watercolor paintings.  Stayed tuned for the reveal..  Have you ever tried to post from an iPad – Ridiculously difficult.  You cannot edit!

Helen Shideler poured water color Helen Shideler poured watercolor

WIP – So Glad, Poured Watercolor Painting Complete

20 May

I swear, the most difficult pat this process is removing the  masquing compound from the painting!  You really get a workout.  Then you have to be a tactile detective by rubbing your fingers all over the piece looking for stray bits of the stuff.  When you remove the masque (frisk it) from your painting, the surface of the paper does not seem to absorb paint quite the same way.  the intention here is not to over work the piece, but leave the painterly qualities intact and visible.

I am posting this from my iPad, not a very user friendly thing to do. Also, the photos were taken with it as well, thinner they are over exposed and showing too light.  Once I return home, I will post the WIP steps with photos taken with my camera.

Helen Shideler Watercolor So Glad

Turn About is Fair Play

18 May

Who would have thought it?  

I am making a mess in my daughter’s kitchen.  While she lovingly tends to her newborn baby boy Theo,  in the hospital,  I am in her kitchen pouring a painting!  in this incredibly great for pouring sink!  The permanent sap green gave me a bit of a fright…but with elbow grease, I managed to remove the evidence. 

image

WIP – Poured Painting – So Glad, I think!

12 May

I am at it again!  I love the freedom of pouring paint.

I have to admit the masking fluid is not acting the way I like to see it.  It is a new bottle and is, well applying  pilley like an old wool sweater.  And the color of this stuff has me a bit freaked out.  I am quite motivated to complete the pours and cleaning up in only a few days.  Afraid it will stick forever.  And, eeeee, I leave for Vancouver on Thursday!  Hopefully to meet my new grandson!   Hopefully he at least arrives when I am there – fingers crossed!

Helen Shideler - WIP Poured Painting

This stage represents three pours and a few masking sessions.

Colors are below

Helen Shideler - paint colorsW&N New Gamboge, Green Gold and DS Organic Vermillion

RNS Art Show & Sale

10 May

This Weekend!

Friday, May 10th & Saturday, May 11th

40 College Hill Road – Irving Gymnasium

Hope to see you there

 

WIP – Begonias on Parade Finally Finished!

5 May Begonias On Parade by Helen Shideler

This painting may have seemed to drag on forever – really completed a few weeks ago, however, our computer was in for repairs and just today we are getting things back up.  And OMG what adventure this has been.  Apple has a Voice Over function – it says everything you do, including ever number or letter you type or button you push.  Drove me crazy until, with the help of my friend Google, I was able to figure out how to shut it off.  I was beginning to think I would never be able to use this computer again!

That aside, here is the finished painting.  There is a spider hanging out, see if you can find it!

Begonias On Parade by Helen Shideler

WIP – Update 3 – Begonias on Parade

31 Mar

Making some serious progress with a limited amount of time in combination with some travel to Atlanta and lots of other distractions.  However, I can now start to see the finish line!   In the upper right hand corner will be Hercules, a rather large webbing spider that is found, well…everywhere around our house in the summer. When you walk around our decks and gardens, it is wise to carry a stuck out in front of you to  clear the webs in as you go.  Really icky to face plant in a web. Trust me!  Personal experience speaking. Stuff nightmares are made of….

I have made peace with the yellow nickel mineral color for this painting.  Understand, I will never use mineral based watercolor paint again and unless someone can make a compelling case and oh, send them to me for free to try out!  The begonias on the right are just a funny color and this paint works. I tried every other share of yellow in my studio…and this works (humble pie) see definitions 2 & 3.

Begonias on Parade - Helen Shideler

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