collaborative works

The ‘WE’ collaborative painting project has begun.  The first trade of panels happened this weekend.

Stage One by Stephanie Smith

The panels are 10″ x 10″ and .75″ thick with a hanging hole drilled in the back, perhaps limiting the position that the panel will be hung.  Participants picked up the blank panels two weeks ago.  Each panel will be painted on by three different artists.  Each artist must leave something of the previous artists’ work visible.  The above panel is the one I received in exchange for the panel I turned in.

Stage One by Chris Carter

I decided to add three-dimensional elements on each of my three panels.  I’ve saved this netting for a couple of years, waiting for the perfect project and I think this is it.  I sealed the panel with acrylic GAC before applying some scrubs of acrylic yellows and oranges.  Finally, I adhered white tissue paper and the black netting to the surface using acrylic matte medium.

The final panels will be exhibited at Connexions Gallery in August.


I felt as if I had swallowed one of Alice’s funny pills when I found myself drawing and painting on a twelve foot wide span of wall rather than a 5″ x 5″ wood panel.  I adore painting large….. the larger the better.  I have not fear of blank walls. They cry out for illusions of space, expansion of landscape and sometimes for pure fantasy.

First stage of Dining Room Wall Mural

To add to the Alice in Wonderland experience, the paint is not what it seems.  The plan is to create a ghost image similar to the landscape view from the client’s back patio.  The darkest dark will not be much darker than the value seen in the image above.  The paint dries at least three shades darker than it looks when applied to the wall.  As we paint tree trunks over  the mass of background foliage the trunk looks to be much lighter than the foliage.  As it dries, the trunk totally disappears when it becomes the exact same value as the foliage.  Slowly it becomes visible again as it dries darker than the foliage.  Quite the challenge!  We paint ….. and then we wait.   We paint …… and then we wait.  We laugh at the absurdity of it as the mural begins to take form as if by magic.

We are using latex paint, light and dark variations of the exact wall color.  This is the first collaborative mural project that Xochitl and I have done together.  Though our personal painting preferences are quite different, we are both flexible enough and skilled enough to meet on common ground, bringing our strengths together.  We work well as a four armed artist.  I can be on a ladder, unable to judge where the branches should be painted with my invisible paint, with Xochitl acting as the eyes and brain of the artist directing my hand left, right, up or down.  We are already looking forward to working together on more murals …. the bigger …. the better.

This is a bit of a duplicate post, but I can’t resist.

Shadow altered by Frank

This morning I posted the original sketchbook version (far left) on my Creative Color blog.  I indicated that I was displeased with the sharpness and poor shape of the shadow in the bottom left corner.  My friend, Frank, read the post and took the time to play with digital altering of the shadow.   What a delightful surprise to find in my email when I recently took a break from working on my taxes!  Thank you, Frank!

Sketchbook drawing: drawn with dip pen and watercolor.

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