Friday, March 22, 2013

Preparing for Abstracts

"Secrets"  Mixed media 24 x 18  inches
"Rust and Steel" Mixed media

It often appears that an abstract art work is quick and spontaneous.  Sometimes abstracts do happen that way.  But often there is a lot of preparatory work going on behind the scene. 
For most of the abstracts I do in watercolor or acrylic I use some collage.  For collage I like to texture and design my papers.  This could involve textured artist tissue paper with gesso and paint, there times I use ink, and solvent on found papers, to get usual effects.
To apply my collage parts I use a mix of gloss and matte medium, fluid for thin papers, and gel for heavier ones.
The process of textured the papers to use take a few days and layering then into the work takes several days also, because it is best to layer thinly allowing each layer to dry before apply the next.  Any painting between layers and at the finish should completely day before finishing with varnish.
Yesterday I spent the whole day just making collage papers. Today I am sorting and figuring out which ones are best to use. Next will be laying them out on a gessoed panel and creating the basic design. That is the process I used in the paintings that I am sharing above.  
piles of ink textured paper getting sorted

close up of one paper

another example of paper

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