Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Making Art While Away From Home

I’m visiting family in Arkansas for the week and making time every day to keep my art practice going. I came prepared.
The view from my brothers backdeck

I packed lots of little bits of tools and supplies... an 8.5 x 11 watercolor block, a 6x6 tablet of watercolor paper, and a small sketchbook to work on/in. To that I added an array of broken-in-half sticks of Neocolor II watercolor crayons, a 6 color set of Golden acrylic tubes of paint, some small brushes, a mister, a cut-in-half credit card for scraping, an assortment of soluble colored and regular pencils, a watercolor palette and water brush, and a chunk of heavy plastic to protect whatever table I found to work on.  All fit in three compact pouches.




The next photo shows some of what I made this week.










This doodle was fun to make using most of the toys I brought with me.




Peacock and Peahen 

My brain was prepared to play. I left behind the notion of making big ART and traveled with a playful spirit.

I arise earlier than anyone else, by a couple of hours, so I set up on the covered deck perched high above the countryside where all I hear is birdsong and a bubbling fountain. Ahhhhh

Some wrens are nesting in two birdhouses on the deck and I’m enjoying watching them swoop in with food for their young. They act like they’re sneaking, as though I can’t see them flit from rail to deck to swing, behind a plant and up to the nest. Silly birds. Each morning a couple of exotic-to-me birds pay a visit... a peacock and a peahen. So beautiful. I wish I could find where they’re nesting and collect some blue feathers.

BTW, my supplies were just right except for wanting a larger brush.


Monday, April 30, 2018

Stalled and Unsure?

Stalled and unsure about what to do next? 

Poppy.1        6"x 6"   on cradled canvas $100
Have you felt this way? Sure you have and that's where I am right now. I'm stalled on a painting, this time an acrylic canvas that was going great guns until life interfered, resulting in a week away from the easel. Now I'm unsure about what to do next.

The story is a familiar one to most artists. I had a painting that simply wasn't ever going to make the grade so I began again by covering the whole thing with gesso except for the sky area which had potential. I grabbed an idea... red poppies... and took off running with brush and paint in hand, remembering a workshop with Jennifer Bowman where she demonstrated painting poppies modeled on dozens of varieties which grow in her backyard. My other poppy painting, In Flanders Field, has brought me great joy and I wanted to do another. 

I began by shaping some individual poppies on small cradled canvases. Those four turned out very well and onward I went.
Poppy.2       6" x 6" $100

This new iteration was well on its way when I was interrupted. Each day as I pass my easel I think about painting, working through ideas and hoping I can make time tomorrow or the next day, and that I'll know what to do. 

Poppy.3         6" x 6"   $100


Poppy.4          6" x 6"   $100

Just Do It

Nike has the solution... Just Do It, proclaimed on millions of tee shirts. Just begin. 

 When you're stalled or uncertain... just begin. Just Do It.

Pick up the brush. Dip it into the paint. Make a mark. Step back and look at what you've done. Repeat, repeat, repeat. There's something in the doing that propels one through the creative process.

I'm Building a Gallery 

Head over to DailyPaintWorks and sign up for daily emails. That's where I post my work along with hundreds of other artists. Click on any image that interests you for more details.  To get to my gallery click on the DPW link below.

Have a great week. I wish you joy.
Jo


Monday, April 02, 2018

Making a Stripe Collage

Here's a DIY for making a collage of stripes.

By now you may have figured out that I love pure abstract design:

LINE.  SHAPE.  COLOR.

This month I returned to an earlier exploration of using stripes in collage.  What' Going On, an earlier piece owned by a collector, marked the beginning of my playing around with stripes.
What's Going On? 12 x 35.  Sold
This time I'm taking a more structured approach to the stripes.  Here are a few of the new ones, both studies and more complex works.

Red with Blue and Sand - 6x6" study on paper $65

Red with Blue and Sand 12 x 12" on panel  $275

Sand and Sea - Study 6x6" on panel  $65

Sand and Sea  12 x 12" collage on panel  $275

Sand and Sky - 6x6" study on panel  $65

Sand and Sky 12 x 12" collage on panel  $275

Here's how I'm working with stripes this week, in case you want to try your hand at making something similar. I warn you, it's labor intensive.

  1. Cut strips of heavy paper in a variety of widths from 1" to 5" x 11" or 12" long.
  2. Establish a colorway for the work and choose a variety of papers in these colors.
  3. Cut the papers into narrow strips of varying widths.
  4. Use your favorite adhesive to glue the papers to the heavy paper backing.
  5. Now that you have an assortment of striped papers assemble them into a pleasing composition and glue them to your substrate. I prefer a flat or cradled panel or 300# watercolor paper or museum board.  
  6. After all is dry apply a thin coat of gloss medium to the surface.

If you want to purchase any of my work please send me an email or visit my gallery at Daily Paint Works.  

Your visit to my blog is deeply appreciated.
 Jo Reimer

Monday, February 26, 2018

Joining the Daily Paint Works Tribe

Hey Down There 6" x 6"

Make Four Collages Each Week:

I've set a new goal, to make at least 4 collages every week.  These days One A Day just isn't happening, no matter how strong my early morning intentions. This one is from last week, using some cut out flowers from my image files. I'm keeping most of the little ones fairly simply, doing them as an entering the studio warm-up.  It's such fun to open a box of collage materials, (compost), grab a few papers that interest me in the moment and play around to see what happens. This is about as close as I want to get to creating something like a still life. I find it fun to pore through my magazines and catalogs in the evening while sitting with my husband in front of the television and cut out images that I might use. 

Daily Paintwork Gallery:

The other bit of news is that I've joined the tribe over at Daily Paint Works, the brainchild of David and Carol Marine and friends. I'm in the process of uploading images of my available work and listing it in the Daily Paint Works catalog. If you've had a yen to buy one of my works, there are lots of sale and I'll be adding many more as the weeks progress.  Get to my DPW Gallery by clicking HERE or by tapping the Daily Paint Works slideshow over in the right hand column.  Even if you aren't in the market for more art just now I'd appreciate your stopping by and leaving a comment. It gets a bit lonely in the studio some days.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Hillsboro Farmers Market Entry

Hillsboro Farmers Market.  16x20".  Collage
I delivered this piece today, one of the 12 Finalists for Picture Hillsboro.  This is a competition to select one painting to be purchased and reproduced as giclee prints which the mayor will give visiting dignitaries and when he visits foreign governments. 

Boy, do I hope I win! But then, I've already won, haven't I? I'm so very thankful to have made the cut.

All 12 Finalists' paintings will be presented at the Hillsboro City Council meeting on February 6 an the final selection will be presented on March 6.  I plan to attend, yes I do! 

Jo

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

The Artist and Social Media

Disclaimer: I'm no computer expert.
  • I learned to type in a back room behind my high school library on a manual typewriter and at best I hit 46 words/minute and haven't improved. 
  • My fingers work slowly and that's a fact. 
  • I bought my first computer in the late 80's. 
  • My blog is 8 years old. 
  • My Facebook account is about 5.
  • Pinterest is my good friend.
  •  Instagram: whoa, I'm still learning. 
  • My etsy store is empty. 
  • And I don't have a real website and don't plan to change.
What I do know is how to use my computer to learn stuff and share my art and ideas. Self-taught.

I have learned SO much by searching the artistic corners of the internet. There are some amazing sources out there and all one has to do it google a word or phrase or ask a question and you get hundreds of answers.

Here on my blog, over in the right side column, you'll find lists of collections of artists whose work I find helpful and links to their blogs or websites. Painters, sketchers, collage artists... those are my peeps.

I've just spent an hour checking out all the links so that clicking on any of them will take you to a special place and a talented and hard-working artist. Go look.  I plan to add a bunch more, especially in the areas of sketching and collage. There are lots of amazing people that have come to my attention.

Here's one of my daily collages but the disclaimer on this one is that I worked on it over about 4 days time, a bit at a time, because I had little time for art making over the weekend.

SEED PODS. 7.5 square. paper on paper
"Seed Pods" was made with 6 pieces of paper: one photograph, a magazine page where I used solvent to dissolve the ink, text printed backwards, 2 purchased handmade papers, and inked tracing paper.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Collage Plus Photography


Daily Collages:

I've been posting recent daily collages over on Instagram. Hop on over there and follow me if you wish. 

In last week's series I worked on 7 1/2" watercolor paper* starting with a tiny photograph from a grouping I printed at a drugstore where you can print several shots on one print.  I drew a loose grid on the paper, glued a photo where I wanted the center of interest, and proceeded to extend the content of the photograph outwards from there.



This is similar to the photo I chose for "Running Toward Home", a herd of horses in a pasture at SunRiver, Oregon.  And here is the finished collage:
 

TEARING 7 1/2" SQUARES":Watercolor paper in either 140# or 300# weight is a favorite substrate for my collages. It comes in sheets that measure 21+" x 30". This size can be folded or measured and torn into 7 1/2" squares with no waste. I keep a stack of these squares on hand. 

Here's how I get 12 squares out of one sheet of 22 x 30" paper with no waste...
  • Fold in half along the 30" length and tear or cut along the fold, yielding 2 pieces that are 22 x 15. 
  • Fold each in half and cut along the fold. You'll now have four strips measuring roughly 22 x 7 1/2.
  • Now take each of these strips and measure and mark 7 1/2" and cut off this square.
  • Fold the remaining strip in half and cut along the fold giving you two more 7 1/2" squares of paper. 
  • I know 22 doesn't divide evenly by 3 but for my purposes, it's good enough to fudge a bit.
  • Repeat with all the paper strips and you'll end up with 12 rough-cut squares.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Catching up in the studio

Feathering My Nest


I took an unintended sabbatical from this blog in 2017 but have good intentions to pick up where I left off.

2017 was not a good year in my house, hence little time or inclination to write to all you lovely people. I’ve enjoyed the best health in many years but no so my husband. He’s suffering from several compression fractures in his back and with chronic back problems there’s not much hope for much improvement. We manage, though, and mostly stay upbeat through it all.

Art-making has taken a bit of a back seat but creativity has not. Our September 2016 move into a smaller home sent me into a long period of being creative about how I feathered my new nest.. I dearly love this smaller studio.

As I was downsizing my studio I made some hard decisions. Goodbye to oil paint and bars, encaustic, pastels, and all but the simplest bookmaking. Supplies for knitting, fancy sewing, quilting, crochet, beading, dyeing, screen printing, embroidery, 2/3 of my library, and much more that I don’t want to remember were donated or sold. I decided that since I have many more years behind me than in front of me I will concentrate on my main loves: collage, sketching with ink and watercolor, acrylic painting, and simple sewing. Those choices have proven to be so good, so right.

As I told you, my studio was once a master bedroom. I store large canvases in the soaking tub.

One small closet holds my clothes and shoes and the other one is for storing supplementary art supplies.
Two cabinets contain collage materials with two of the drawers reserved for thread and interfacing.

My old wire basket unit is my colored paper palette and several 12x12 totes house the collage compost. And yes, I set up a reading corner with the bookcase and recliner positioned in a corner window looking out on the backyard.

My corner desk is bracketed by tables, one for sewing and paperwork and the other for drawing and sit-down collage.

 I have a tall Ikea table for collage and for cutting fabric, with a lower pull-out table underneath.

So you see I’m all set.

 During January I plan to make one collage every day. So far so good and here are a couple of the finished ones, both 7.5" square.

MAX tracks at 10th and Morrison

Running For Home
As for my art practice in general, I’m backing off from art as business. All that marketing is in the rear view mirror. That’s not to say that I will say no to opportunities to show or sell my work… not at all! I’ve submitted two large collages to a local competition, have rejoined a local gallery, and am ruminating about ways to sell online. Making a collage every day means the work will stack up and my small house doesn’t have enough wall space for it all. I’ll let you know when I have work to sell.

I'd sure appreciate any comment or hello or feedback you'd like to leave, even if it's just to let me know you're still out there and you care about reading One A Day.

JO

My new Blogger address is  https://joreimer.blogspot.com.

Saturday, January 07, 2017

Andy Warhol and Bright Line Eating



Jagger by Warhol. Portland Art Museum.
I resisted going to the Andy Warhol exhibition but my daughter's invitation was too appealing, especially being able to share it with three grandkids. I'm SO glad to have seen this surprisingly moving exhibit of amazing art.


The entry was wallpapered with prints of headlines from the 60s and 70s, times I lived through that moved me to tears, such as the iconic photos of the motel where Martin Luther King was assassinated, photos of  the Kennedy brothers, Rights Bill signed into Law, Men Walk on the Moon.

So powerful!

And then the show itself which was skillfully mounted. At the time they were made Warhol's prints didn't appeal to me, but now! Now I can see and understand that his work added much to the visual history of the latter part of the century with powerful, impactful yet simple works that tell about time in a way that words cannot.

The Electric Chair by Warhol
I  still don't like most of Warhol's work, but this show was magnificent, even the grouping of his Electric Chair series. Most are only two colors which gives me an idea for a collage... not of the Electric Chair, but of using such powerful colors together.  I can see a series of collages based on his use of color, somewhat like Leslie Saeta is doing in her 30 Day Challenge where her inspiration is Joanna Gaines homes in the TV show Fixer Upper.


In fact, I got several ideas for collage from this show, especially from the works which feature bold drawings on top of collaged papers such as this series of portraits:






That's my redhead standing in front of Mick. She's a fan.




Bright Line Eating



And on another topic, entirely off-topic as far as ART is concerned but which will interest some of you.... I have released 59 pounds and have reached my goal of living in a right-sized body. I'm easing into maintenance and am holding my weight within a pound or two.  Boy, do I feel good! It's such fun to shop thrift stores and sales racks, on the hunt for small sizes.  



Bright Line Eating did it for me.  I began this journey on Dec. 29, 2015 and reached goal weight in the fall. I'm a slow loser. One of my friends has lost 66 pounds in 5 months!  I tried to do it on my own, following the FAA diet plan, but soon figured out that I needed to know more so I signed up for the March 2016 Bootcamp.



If you're interested, the next BLE BootCamp starts this month. The price is nearly half that of previous BootCamps. If you click on this link you'll get access to the Food Freedom Quiz and then receive further invitations to view 3 more videos in the series that explain this method of weight loss.  It's not for everyone. In fact, it's probably not for most people, but for me it worked. I'm a food addict, addicted to sugar and flour. This program removes all sugars and flours from the diet... not easy at first, but like weening off any addiction it gets easier.with time.  



Here's the link: 
http://bit.ly/2j2If1B



Jo

Monday, December 05, 2016

In The New Studio


It's been a while since I caught you up on what's going on in my life. I'm finally mostly settled into our new home and into my new studio. I know many of you were concerned that I'd be unhappy giving up my large studio and moving to a smaller one, but let me tell you I'm loving this space. Perhaps it's the newness and the challenge of creating a place where I can work comfortably and efficiently. I've always liked changing things around.

I transformed what was the master bedroom into a very good working studio. We ripped out the carpet and replaced it with cork flooring and then moved much of my old furnishings into the space, though I no longer have that big table that I loved so much. In it's place I have an Ikea table that's 30 x 60 with telescoping legs. At it's maximum height it's a good place to stand and work and it can be moved to the corner where it just fits over my flat files.

This corner is where I spend most of my time. The table on the left houses my sewing machine though I haven't used it yet. The corner table has the computer, printer and scanner, and the table to the right is for collage and journal work.  I've had these pieces of furniture for nearly 30 years and have used them in many configurations.

I found this useful chest on sale at Michael's and after a frustrating morning putting it together I'm finding it to be just right for all my Compost, the bits and pieces of paper that I use frequently to build my collages.  There's a similar chest to the right for watercolor and drawing supplies.

And these two wire basket units, Elfa brand, contain more papers. The one on the right is my main palette of hand painted and textured papers.  Of course, this isn't all of my paper stash. Next to the needs of a fiber artist I think the collage/mixed media artist has the biggest stash of supplies.  There are two large chests in the closet and more general supplies (glue, cutting tools, supports) in other out of the way spaces.  But what I have in this room isn't "in storage", it's right here at hand where I can grab what I need without too much searching.

Then there's the garage studio...


I intend to do all my wet and messy work in the garage where I took over an existing tool bench with its big north-facing window.  I have paints and tools in drawers and in boxes underneath the cabinet and in shelves to the left.  The floor is easily cleaned epoxy and although there's no water supply I own several buckets that will serve me well.  I got this studio up and running just before the weather turned cold and without heat I can't spend much time here, though I do have plans for a way to curtain off the area and use a space heater for short bouts of painting.

Painting large will probably be reserved for warmer weather and I'll work in the other studio during the winter. We'll see what happens as I settle into using these two wonderful spaces. I have one larger painting started and am working on a small collage sketchbook which I'll show you when it's finished.
 
Mostly I'm working on lesson plans for my Creative Process class to be held at The Village Gallery in Cedar Mill, OR. on December 29. We'll concentrate on figuring out ways to foster creativity in the studio and use the collage process to study composition.  I'm excited to be teaching this class. It's a go, for sure, but there are 4 spaces remaining if you or someone you know wants to have some creative fun between Christmas and New Years. This may be the last in person class I teach.

I'd love to hear from you, and hope you leave me a comment below or shoot me an email.

Oh yes, I've lost more weight and am nearly to my goal. I'm so glad I found Bright Line Eating. If you are curious let me know and I'll point you in the right direction.


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