Tag Archives: 2013

Paper Art

Roger Brown Kernal Detail

Rogan Brown Kernal Detail

As my print making has come to a bit of a halt, I have been investigating some other areas of interest, and one of these I have found out comes under the heading of paper art.  Where the paper stops just being a surface for my chosen medium to rest upon, but is the medium for the art to be made out of itself.  I love this twist on things.

I have long been thinking of cutting out the shapes of my work, especially the grevilleas and I have gone part of the way with cutting out the last one from its failed background and intend to take this concept further.  But investigating this I have found a whole new world of creativity, which just make me smile.

The amazing things that artists around the world are doing is so inspiring, so I thought I would share some of them with you and show you what is inspiring me at the moment.

One of the first Paper Artist I found was Rogan Brown and he has a number of these amazing works, the first picture is a close up of his work Kernal.  The intricate details of his cutting and the layers that build up to his images are so elegant.

Kristen Hassenfeld Paper Art Installations 4

Kirsten Hassenfeld Paper Art Installations 4

These delicately lit installations by Kirsten Hassenfeld also blew my mind.  I love that the paper essentially a two dimensional object has been made into a three dimensional creation and the adding of lights just takes it a further step.  I want one!

Giselle, réalisée pour la galerie de l' Opéra Garnier, 2009 (hauteur 65 cm)

Giselle, réalisée pour la galerie de l’ Opéra Garnier, 2009
(hauteur 65 cm)

I found this lovely paper sculpture lamp on a french blog, how ethereal and beautiful is this.

Kristi Malakoff Maibaum (detail) 2009 Black paper, black foam core, hardware

Kristi Malakoff
Maibaum (detail)
Black paper, black foam core, hardware

I love the sheer joy of this installations, and to think it is life sized.

Here are a few images I adore, but I can’t find who the artists are.

From a website catalog but no artist named

From a website catalog but no artist named

I could go on and on, but if you want to see more images you can visit my pinterest site for more images I have of delicious paper art.  I have found pinterest very useful for gathering images for my work and you will find many other boards that I have for different projects and interests.

Jelly fish lights - unknown

Jelly fish lights – unknown

Sturt Desert Pea Linocut 2

'Dancing Peas' Sturt Desert Pea 2      Linocut 617mm x 240mm July 2013

‘Dancing Peas’ Sturt Desert Pea 2 Linocut 617mm x 240mm July 2013

I have started my second printmaking course, this one is where I get to learn how to use the studio and print my own work.  Once I have completed this course I will be able to use the studio and print my work when ever I want.

I made this lino a few weeks ago on holidays, see the other Desert Pea post.  It is large of course, I don’t often do small works.  It was fairly difficult to get to print well, but I am pleased with it as it is only my third attempt at printing.

New Desert Pea lino

New Desert Pea
The lino being cut

It has been taken from a drawing I did in 2012 Sturt Desert Pea 2, this is one of my favorite works and I wanted to reuse the image again in a different medium and push it a bit further.  The image has been flipped in the printing process.

Sturt Desert Pea 2 Coloured Pencil & Acrylic April 2012

Sturt Desert Pea 2
Coloured Pencil & Acrylic
April 2012

I, of course, will be colouring in some of the prints and I am going to experiment with printing it on different papers and coloured backgrounds, so you will see this image in a number of different guises.

Although this print looks rather clean, I was far from it, some how in the course of the 2 .5 hours it took to print this lino, I manage to cover myself in ink.  As my hands were covered I unconsciously touched my face (a lot of times) and had been running around the studio with an almost black face.  My fellow students were most kind and didn’t laugh at me and only mentioned I had ink on my nose.  When I looked in the mirror I couldn’t stop laughing, it really was covered.  Lucky I checked before I walked out!



Grevillea 5 – Anatomy of the drawing Part 2

Grevillia 5

Grevillea 5 Finished painting

I have finished the drawing so here is the second installment of the Anatomy of the Drawing.


I decided to do a dark background for this painting as the flowers where so light, and went for complimentary colours to make the painting zing.  As the main colour of the flowers are yellow I went for a muted purple background.  I never use just one colour and this background is made up of dark greys (darkest at the bottom prisma colour cool grey 90% up to 50%), a great colour called dark grape and dark purple.

Grevillia 5 8

Background of painting before solvent

The background under painting showed through too much for me so I used a solvent (orange zest) to dissolve the colours and give a more even tone and then went back over it again in pencil.  I don’t like to use solvent often as it takes away all the life of the pencil strokes, but occasionally when I want better coverage or am trying to fix a problem I find it very helpful.  Here is a picture that shows how the solvent changes the work.

Grevillia 5 Solvent on the background pencil

Grevillea 5 Solvent on the background pencil


My last step is to outline the picture.  I do this to really emphasis the forms and make the shapes and colours pop.  I also really like a good outline, always have, ever since art school which drove my lecturers crazy.  It gives my work a graphic, print quality that I enjoy.

Grevillia 5 Ink Outline

Grevillea 5 Ink Outline

I used to use fineliner pens, put the wax in the coloured pencil would clog them up very quickly and kill them.  So I am now using old-fashioned nib pens and my Sennelier Ink.  This is sooo much better and I love to use these lovely pens, such a link to the past and the lines are much more alive.

So there my friends you have it.  This is my process in making my art, I hope you enjoyed your second instalment and others are also inspired to share their processes , it is so interesting and informative to see how others work.



First for 2013 or last for 2012, whichever a recalcitrant painting indeed



Some painting just flow onto the page, there may be a couple of hesitations as you consider colour, technique or composition, but they just work.  Calm, smooth and satisfying, like good quality chocolate.  Others do not, you struggle with them, you struggle not to throw them aside, you struggle to get them to work.  This one was the latter, and I am not sure if it has worked yet or not, we need some time apart for tempers to settle.

It was just plain recalcitrant, what a great word, I had to look it up before I used it, just to ensure that I had the meaning right.  My dictionary said

“resisting authority (that would be me) or control, not obedient or compliant, refractory.  Hard to deal with, mange or operate”.

It started out so beautifully, a dear friend bought me a lovely bunch of Gerberas for Christmas and they were so fresh and happy I decided to paint them.  Trying to find a different take on them I decided to paint one from underneath.

My major issues were

  • Tricky perspective that hasn’t quite worked in the stem.
  • Petal Colour, I really wanted to get the clear soft pink, which I think has worked, but I tussled with the difference between shading and the different colours in the petals.  Still not clearly resolved.
  • The background had a couple of attempts, happy with it, but not sure if I like it more than the white paper backgound of my other paintings.
  • The outline, I used my new Sennelier inks and it was such a gorgeous dark black, but too black and I ended up going over the lines again in grey pencils to knock them back a bit as they dominated the picture.

So I put this one before you, and as I started it in December and finished it in January, not sure were it fits.  Any ideas on it are welcome, we clearly need as much help as we can get to  repair our relationship.  (Or should I not take this so personnally?)


2013 to begin, 2012 to remember

Happy New Year to all the lovely readers of this blog.

Melbourne FireworksHerald Sun Website

Melbourne Fireworks
Herald Sun Website

This is the fireworks in Melbourne last night, I had the privileged position of being on the top of one of the south bank apartments in town, 28 floors up.  We were right in the midst of all these fireworks, an absolutely spell binding view.  We were literally on the roof which was a little scary, but worth it for the show.


My favourite paintings 2012

2012 was such a great year for me, I have restarted my art, which is so exciting in itself and this blog and the generous support of my readers, the comments, likes and views have been wonderful.  When I started I did not know if any one would see it and now I have over 70 followers.  It has kept me going, even when my energy levels have been low and I do not post as often as I would like, this blog and its supporters have made me get back on track so thank you. I still battle with Chronic Fatigue and sometimes I  do not have the energy to draw, paint or write.

I also had my wonderful trip to France which I shared with you, and again because of the blog I was committed to keeping a journal of the trip and it has been so fantastic on many levels.  I did some lovely, quick, loose drawings of the scenes that caught my eye, I have the best keep sake of the trip, I was able to share it with not only my friends and family, but with so many of you out there.  It enriched the whole trip so much more than I had thought.


I am excited for what 2013 could bring, I have a few things on my agenda for next year.  They include

  • Starting to exhibit my work, this is my major artistic goal, though I am not sure how to go about it,
  •  I will start an Etsy Store and see what that brings.
  • I am going to do some relief printing classes, so look out for some prints.
  • Just be grateful to be able to continue to create and share the results and the journey with you.
  • I might even finally figure out Facebook and get my work out on it.

As always I have a great many plans, we will see how the year and the energy goes, but I am hopeful and content with how things are improving.  So thank you for your support and my family who give unstintingly in their support and understanding of me.

Karen x