Kierra, again, with a few adjustments

I left the sketch for a couple of days, and when I came back to it, I immediately knew what need to be finished. I layered and painted until my sketchbook paper protested by bubbling.

Kierra

A sketch of my little sister in watercolor and colored pencil. Not sure if it’s completely done, I might take a few days and look back to see if I want to add more detail.

On an island in the Sun

I’m roughly two weeks into a long vacation on the Georgia coast. At the moment I’m hiding in our rental house to avoid the so-hot-my-skin-feels-like-it’s-melting-weather. The heat never bothered me until Sunday, when we went on a day trip to Savannah. The air was so hot, sticky, and muggy. Every time we passed a body of water or a fountain, I felt the urge to strip and jump in.

My family and I are vacationing on St. Simons Island, a place I’ve known since my childhood. I packed my sketchbooks, pencils, pens, and watercolors for the trip. Watercolor is a no-hassle sort of paint medium when it comes to transporting/painting on site. Equipped with an old Windsor & Newton watercolors compact set and a small assortment of Koi Water Brushes, I’ve gotten at least a bit of sketching in.

View of Jekyll Island from East Beach.

View from Pier of  St. Simons sound and of Brunswick

View of Jekyll island from the village near sunset

Ocean view at dusk. (When I was little, one of my favorite stories was about an old man with a long silvery beard who had a garden of pearls. Every night, he took a pearl from his garden and placed it into the sky, hence it became the moon… it was unintentional, but the moon in the painting kind of reminded me of a pearl, and that story)

The sketchbook keeps filling up. More to come.

And OMG IT’S AUGUST. If my lack of posting indicates anything, you can probably discern how far behind I am with senior show.

A place to inhabit

Some house guests are not welcome.

The small creepy-crawlies colonizing our unfinished basement were not invited, and yet there they were: on the wall, on the floor, on the cobwebs I kept walking through, on all our belongings, ON ME. The battle against said trespassers has been an ongoing fight-a fight to the death!

Don’t make that face. I’m not overreacting. I don’t care if by comparison I’m Godzilla and they are the pebbles from a pulverized building. These bugs are everywhere. And they are going DOWN.

So the basement isn’t the most ideal environment for a studio space, but it’s the only place in the house that had enough room and where my mom can contain my “messy” art methods. But, UGH, how my skin crawls when I walk through a cobweb, or when I lift a box to find a roach! So one day after killing four spiders, walking through two cobwebs, and stomping the guts out of a small roach, I marched up the stairs, let out an angry gasp and moaned, “I cannot take this anymore!”

Great, my skin is crawling after I typed that. Wimp, much? Get a grip, K.

The decision I reached was I would use the basement, but only for large-scale painting and sculpture. For everything else, I rearranged my room to include an area for studio space.

Less bug-related whine fests and more art-related posts. Ok? Ok.

My university and the High Museum of Art are new best friends…

…at least for the next three years.

Brenau University and the High Museum of Art announced they intend to embark on a unique educational partnership.

My first thought? Honestly?
Field trips. Lots and lots of field trips.

In the storage and conservation facility with Michael Shapiro showing us models of upcoming exhibitions.

Last Tuesday, I was invited to attend a meeting with Brenau and the High representatives for a luncheon/meet with the press/tour/was-there-a-specific-name-for-it-?- event at the High Museum. The luncheon was at a big conference table so everyone could “mingle” while eating sandwiches and poking at salads with the oddest concoction of a spork (Seriously, if I got a chance to take a picture of the weird spork I would have dedicated an entire post to the topic). We met the High Museum’s director,  Michael Shapiro, who gave us a tour of the current exhibition (of VERY SHINY cars), and showed us a behind-the-scenes tour of their storage and conservation facility, which included looking at models for upcoming shows through 2013. The next show is dedicated to all things Dali, and later there will be shows including selected works of Picasso, Matisse, Warhol, and Pollack. Shapiro also mentioned that a certain contemporary artist-Jeff Koons, to be exact-is coming for a guest lecture soon at the High. Dude, I‘m so there.

Cool beans, no? Too bad I only get to wreak havoc at the High for only one more year. I’ll just have to collect as much wisdom, free/reduced price tickets, internships, and odd concoctions of sporks as I can in the little time I have left before it’s too late.

The photograph was taken by SARA GUEVARA of the Gainesville Times.
The source of the photograph, as well as the accompanying article is just a click away.

2 weeks indulging in sleep

Finals week was rough. Let’s just leave it at that. Since then two weeks passed, and I finally realized that spring semester is over. But I will not truly feel that this semester is completely behind me until I write this:

Plaster Gordon(s), it’s nice to finally see your butt.

My final exam involved me giving a brief presentation to the Sculpture 2 students on the molding and casting process of Gordon. I didn’t make the last plastic cast, but instead went along with my teacher’s suggestion to make a test plaster cast of Gordon so I could see if there were any problems with the mold.

(from LEFT to RIGHT: MOLD, Test cast of back mold piece, Test cast of Gordon

By making the test cast of Gordon, I learned a few things:

  1. Don’t use a bad bag of plaster. Yes, apparently plaster goes bad.
  2. While using Vaseline as a release agent on the mold makes the cast come out like butter, streaks from the application shows on the surface of the cast.
  3. The mold needs to be fastened TIGHTLY shut, otherwise plaster will leak out, yadda yadda yadda…not fun.

I’m leaving the mold at Brenau and will make multiple casts of Gordon later. Or someone will use this knowledge to take my mold, and make as many casts as she pleases. I’m looking at YOU, Christine. :)

Sleep is for losers and dead people.

I kept reciting that to myself in the wee hours of all the mornings I spent finishing up the last few printmaking projects.

One of the projects was screen printing, and let me tell you…screen printing is not fantastic doing last-minute. I learned that one the hard way. The process was lengthy and time-consuming and our table with countless containers of mixed acrylic inks ended up looking like something out of that dinner scene in Hook.

I thought the results were not great for the landscape view. I ended up printing one piece at a time after the registration was off in a few places. It physically pains me when I realize how cool this might have looked if I didn’t get so far behind.

For my second screen print, I made an abstraction piece that turned out better than I imagined. I decided to play with more subdued colors and I’m really happy with the results.

My last project was a book. I made it two weeks before finals, but didn’t start illustrating until finals week for various reasons and excuses…and let’s not get into those.

The cover is made from one of my recycled test screen prints from eariler in April. I wanted to stay with a recycled prints theme, since I kept all my test and reject prints. My first reaction to the book was that I just wanted to make it a sketchbook, and I began to draw portraits. Then I incorporated those test prints by creating collages in the sketches. I came up with a good idea, but didn’t finish.

self portrait

I’m planning on finishing the illustrations in the book, adding to the many art projects I’m piling up this summer. Hooray! I’m done with this blog post! Adios, Junior year.

I always forget how fast plaster sets

Just to make sure the mold doesn’t have any trouble spots, Christine and I did a test cast of Gordon.

After coating the rubber mold with Vaseline, Christine wrapped and clamped the mold together.

While I mixed a rather large batch of plaster. 

Christine finished setting him up.

I stalled too long on the plaster and it began to set so Christine and I rushed to put in as much as we could. As we poured, plaster leaked from cracks in the bottom. So for future reference, more clamping is needed. I hope it turns out ok, but I won’t be heartbroken if it doesn’t. It’s only a test after all. :-)

Thanks to Christine for taking pictures and letting me steal them off her blog.