Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Sketchbook Project

I've spent the last 4 months trying to keep quiet about this fun project that I decided to be a part of, because... well, I wasn't sure if I could pull it off. I must admit it did help quite a bit that they extended the deadline.

The Sketchbook Project, now in its fourth variation, is a opportunity for anyone to submit a sketch-filled moleskine, sketchbook to become part of the permanent Library of Art House Gallery.
Steven Peterman and Shane Zucker have recently announced that they will also be opening up a new space in Red Hook in Brooklyn, NY in January 2010. The Sketchbook Project Volume 4 exhibition will begin touring January 29th, starting in Atlanta and moving to NYC, then Los Angeles, St. Louis, MO and Chicago, IL. Hundreds of people will be able to receive a library card to be able to get a hands on look at the sketchbooks.

Each participating artist was given one of 30 possible themes to base their creations on. The theme idea was created to help the artists get a clear focus as well aid the visitors in finding the books they are most interested in viewing. The theme I was randomly given was "The Aftermath of..." and I filled in the blank for the title/ theme to read
The Aftermath of Line and Sight. You can click that link to view more pages from my submission.

I am so very happy to be a part of such a huge community driven project. I love that so many people will get to handle the book and see the drawings up close. I hope you will take a look at this link for the touring dates. If the books come to your neck of the woods, go take a-look-see. I think you get to keep your library card.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Good Art in Raleigh

Shortly after relocating to North Carolina, about one year ago, I went out to experience my first Raleigh art walk (known as First Friday), which happened to fall on January 2nd 2009. What an unfortunate first impression this night left on me. Having come from Southern California, where there are almost too many Art Walks to choose from each month, Raleigh's art scene appeared a very ho-hum, dead scene. People must have been recovering from their festivities, because I now know this isn't the typical First Friday scenario. But on that blustery, night I happened to walk into the (then quiet) studios of 311 W. Martin St. It was there that I met an artist who gave me hope that Raleigh wasn't the cultural vacuum I had assumed.

Julie Niskanen has her studio at 311 W. Martin Studios, which houses many fine print makers and a few painters as well as hosts gallery exhibits in the front space. I immediately fell in love with the rich blacks of Julie's mezzotints as well as her seemingly simple compositions. I've been coveting one of her piece's in particular, since that night. And today my husband and I celebrated our twelfth anniversary by purchasing this piece. Please take the time to look through her website which includes installation shots and mixed media pieces as well as drawings and of course her beautiful prints.

Julie Niskanen, Sanctuary, mezzotint, 18" x 24"

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Winter Figures

The top two drawings were done with graphite, the rest are ink using a new brush pen that my husband picked up for me. This is THE best brush pen I have come across. You can get incredibly fine lines with it, (which has been my main complaint with the majority of commercial brush pens). I love to use an ink well and series 7 brush when in the studio, but this is so much easier to tote to the many figure drawing groups I go to. A lot less clean up as well. My husband, Greg Baldwin (of Creaturebox) gives the details about the maker of the brush pen and describes how he is using it on his blog which you can check out here. We discovered that if you order it from the UK, you get extra refills and it's slightly cheaper (even with shipping). I hope some of you will give it a try.