1/10/10

BATIK LOOK-ALIKE PAINTINGS

In the late 80's this Amish buggy was 'parked' outside a small grocery in Greentown, Indiana and looked like good painting material to me. However my desire was to paint it with more of a contemporary flair to contrast with the old fashioned look of the buggy.
Having tried one or two 'tape paintings' (that's what I called this process,) I decided that 'taping' the painting would be the way to express what I envisioned. Since this was one of my first 'tapings,' I had virtually no plan or even a drawing, just masking tape, paint and a photo to inspire me. The batik-like look that resulted from this painting hooked me for good. I knew then that all the work of tearing pieces of tape to fit each shape would be worth it. The resulting textures were so unique and exciting.
Later this buggy painting was entered in a local show and was awarded second place. The judge, Jerry Smith, WSI, asked me why I left off the horse's head. He may have wondered if it had meaningful significance. When I told him I ran out of room because I hadn't planned ahead, he grinned and shook his head.
This taped painting of a village in Italy was one of my favorite ones to do. Last week's post, also about taped paintings, has a similar painting. Once I had completed this one, I realized that zooming in on the people would make a great painting without all the buildings.
Because the watercolor paint seeps under the tape in an irregular way, wonderful and unpredictable textures result. Over the years of experimenting, I've discovered which brands of tape 'leak' the best - or worst. Still, it's always a surprise when all the painting part is completed and the masking tape has to be removed. Often adjustments must be made once the painting is revealed.
My previous blog last week included a taped painting of this same shuttered window and quilt. Check out the difference in colors changes and how that affects the mood of each painting.
It's impossible to 'copy' a taped picture because of the way the masking tape tears and the way the paint seeps under it. What a surprise it is to remove the many pieces of tape to find glorious color combinations, too.
This painting was an experiment done just for fun, with no plan. It's called "Throwing in the Towel," and is quite small, only about 8 x11" Only four layers of tape were used, as compared with my normal six or seven layers. There's also a little stamping added in the whitest areas.
The previous post also had a painting of this very same window with tulips under the window. The three taped paintings shown on this post each have their own 'flavor.'
Recently, someone posted an opinion about artists who repeat the same paintings. They believed that repeating a painting was "self plagiarism". Tell that to Monet with his haystacks!
If I love a photo I've taken, if I'm inspired by it time and again, I WILL paint it more than once... because it's still brewing inside of me ....don't know how else to explain it. Some things just never stop intriguing me, and I must paint them again and again, using different approaches each time.
The vast array of textures in Italy are perfect for this taping technique. These old buildings began as a taped painting on YUPO using FLUID ACRYLICS, applied with a watercolor approach to be transparent.
This was the first taped painting I'd tried on YUPO. Regular watercolor lifts off of YUPO, so it wouldn't work for the taping process.
Thank goodness for the flexibility of Fluid Acrylics. Only three layers were taped on this, then the rest of the work was done with a brush.
Both gouache and transparent watercolor were used for this taped painting, which was begun with absolutely no plan. Once the tape was removed, after seven layers of taping and painting, (see below)the painting needed a lot more definition. 'Finding' a direction for the painting was a challenge until Barb mentioned that she could imagine a woman with a fancy hat on, something like a Kentucky Derby hat.
The next photo shows how the painting looked after the tape was removed. The last photo shows the work in progress as I slowly 'found' her with her hat in all the tape design. Almost all my taped paintings begin with a specific plan, but this one didn't. It was lot of fun to discover what the painting could be.
There's a workshop scheduled in April this year in Indianapolis where I'll be teaching this unique process. You can check out the 'batik-look-alike' taping workshop on my side bar to find out all the details. Hope to see you there.

10 comments:

Elizabeth Seaver said...

Wow! The paintings are wonderful, and I love hearing all about your process. I, too, love working with the unpredictable. You've really done something unique. Thanks for sharing.

Vicki Holdwick said...

Oh, Sandy,

I want to learn how to do this.

Love it!

xoxo

Vicki Greene said...

Because I live so far away I will just have to keep hoping that you will change your mind on doing a book or DVD. Your blog post are very inpsiring. Thanks for sharing.

Dawn said...

thanks Sandy,

I have been working on a painting using stencils I made myself and I think a taped painting is the next step to try. Thank you for the inspiration!

Christiane Kingsley said...

Sandy, Just like Vicki, I hope that one day you will produce a book of video to show your process. Otherwise, I will just have to wait until I retire and have time to attend one of your workshops.
It is indeed fascinating to hear about your process. I was very surprised to read that you also do this on yupo.
Thank you for the beauty and the inspiration.

Myrna Wacknov said...

I am going to try this one of these days. You get such a fabulous result!

Sandy Maudlin said...

You all must give this a try. It's such a reward to see the increduble and impossible to paint textures that result.

Jeanette said...

I am fascinated by this technique and tempted by your workshop. Just a bit too far for me.

Cindi said...

whoa i love it!!! iwant to do them all too and portraits.. how about an online class where we pay to enter and you teach?? would that work??

fingers crossed!! :)

Billie Crain said...

Amazing...just amazing, Sandy. Love the girl in the hat. I'd never have 'found' her in all that in million years. Genius.