Rust & Decay. Experiments with Rust Paint.

November 19th, 2017

Everybody who knows me, knows, how much, I love metal, rust and decay.  Many years ago, I collected old rusty, metal objects from the roadsides and turned them into sculptures. I also gained my certificates in welding. At the time, with myself and 3 children to support,  I welded in factories to make a living and in between, I made sculptures from the rusty found objects. I don’t weld much anymore, as it’s a problem for me to move around the heavy metal, but I still have a large collection of smaller bits, I use, to rust up, paper, objects and textiles for my projects. Lately, I have been playing around with some commercial rust paints.

 

 

Clay, Botanics Rust Paint, IOD Décor Moulds

 

 

Today, I tried out, Botanic’s rust paint, from L’essential in Australia. I love the fact they are all environmentally-conscious products, free from nasty additives and are preservative-free where possible. They smell good too. I’m very pleased with the result and it does, really look like rust.

 

Clay, Botanics Rust Paint, IOD Décor Moulds

 

The problem I have is, I need large amounts of rust paint for my projects and now looking for a brand with reasonable prices.

Maybe I could even make my own…

 

 

Homemade Gesso Paint!

November 18th, 2017

I love Gesso paint and use heaps of it in my work. It’s gritty, chalky and can be applied to artwork to give a translucent or opaque look. It’s also very expensive so I decided to make my own.

 

Gesso is used for many things such as a primer for canvas or on paper to give a good base for painting, drawing or mixed media work.  When making collage I use it as a gluing medium to stick on papers, in-between, painting and drawing layers.

The recipe below makes 2 litres of Gesso paint

( If not using straight away, this Gesso will last approx. 4-6 weeks)

Homemade Gesso

PLASTER MIX

1 cup Plaster of Paris or fine white plaster powder

1 cup of PVA or white glue

1 cup hot water

PAINT

3 cups white acrylic paint

UTENSILS

Container, cup and mixing stick or spoon

RATIO: 1-3

Plaster Mix 1 – Acrylic paint 3

Method

To make the plaster mix. Add the plaster to the hot water and stir ( Safety purposes: always add the plaster powder to the liquid, not liquid to plaster, as it will blow up into your face and always wear a dust mask)

Dust Mask

“Plaster of Paris” and cup

Hot water and mix

Next add the PVA or white glue, stir.

Finally add the white acrylic paint and mix. ( I used some acrylic powder paint I had and made it up with water) You can use any kind of acrylic paint or colour .

 

Result

I was very happy with the result. The gesso is translucent with the gritty bits I like. You can also do several layers of gesso to give a more opaque appearance. It covered my canvas very well with only 1 coat. When adding more than 1 coat you can sand in- between to give a really smooth surface for detailed work .

2 litres of Gesso

Gesso on stretched canvas

Gesso on paper

 

 

To see this and more of my free tutorials, please go to  Tutorials I even show you how to make my large studio easel.

 

The Power of an Object. Identity through Object.

November 12th, 2017

One of my life- time interests is collecting vintage, antique and found objects. I believe, through objects, stories can be told, and through imagination, new ones found.

Objects and their stories, often inspire my art making too. I deconstruct items for sculpture. Old clothing and antique quilts, are often used in textile pieces, artist books and collage. Aged  surfaces and patinas of collections, make their way into my abstract paintings, too.

 

 

Lately, I have been asking myself a few questions about, collecting and identity. Especially after the passing of my step father a few years ago, when I had the huge task, of cleaning out his house and shed. Overwhelming at times, the hoard, has found it’s way into my life & studio

 

 

Having only known him for a short time, (5yrs) I’ve discovered, through his belongings and objects, a hidden or, new identity.

 

 

Strangely , I now find myself imagining, a new “make believe identity” through the objects he hoarded

 

 

This has lead me to many questions…

When alive, do we really know a person? and can things and objects help us to see, a new, or different identity?

Through objects and belongings, can we feel connected to that person?

Can objects change, how we see others & ourselves?

 

 

 

 

 

The Life of a Painting. Changing Back to Oil Paints.

November 5th, 2017

A few years ago, I changed from oil paints, to acrylics, after I became allergic to the turps. I’m still not used to painting with acrylics as, I just love the lushness, depth and movement of oil paints. Something, I haven’t been able to achieve with acrylics. So, recently I bought some oil painting supplies, eco friendly turps, to see, if I’m still allergic to it.

 

The life of a Painting.

Oil paint , medium, wax on canvas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes I think, I should stop earlier, when its fresh and spontaneous, but usually keep going. I  just have to trust the process and know, that eventually, I will end up with something I’m happy with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I will revisit the painting, in a few days time to decide, whether I will take it further. At the moment, I’m feeling, times long past.

Rustmatter. Limited Edition Artist Books

November 1st, 2017

Connections and contrasts of imperfections, found in the urban environment, highlighting, insignificant marks, weathered surfaces and cast – offs. I am influenced by abandoned and derelict spaces, vacant industrial sites, structures, old walls & graffiti.One of a kind, handmade ( Limited Edition) artist books from Australian contemporary artist Jenny Davis

Each book consists of:
1 Vintage cigar tin lined with eco- dyed crochet scrap in Shibori- dyed indigo blue, or rust.
1 Handmade concertina artist book, collage with rust – dyed papers and slow stitched with Japanese Shibori threads.
A vintage button with an 1800’s, rusted suspender buckle, winds around the book to close. Some buckles have “Paris” engraved.
1 Scrap piece of rust – dyed canvas cloth, frayed, embellished with slow stitching.
1 Handmade collage created from aged, rust paper, antique suspender buckle and slow stitching.
2 photographs in an acrylic pouch, taken beneath the City of Paris, France.
1 rusted fence loop found in the outback Australia.
(Each artist book is original, handmade and differs from the other. They are all created from the same materials though, making each one, a collectable piece of art)

Please click on photos to purchase!

Rust 2

 

Rust 3

 

Rust 4

 

Rust 5

 

Rust 6

 

Rust 7

 

Rust 8

 

Rust 9

 

Rust 10

 

 

 

The Old School House & Friends.

September 7th, 2017

For the past decade or so, I have worked with an amazing group of women artists at the old schoolhouse in Badger Crk. Victoria. We meet up weekly to paint, throw around ideas, experiment and play with new, unusual, materials and techniques. This time is invaluable to me, as it, gives me a break from the usual, business side of making art and gets me out of the studio. We chat about our work, share ideas and discuss what’s happening in the world and our lives. Mostly,  it’s just a whole lot of fun, mucking around with good friends who happen to love making art.

 

Lately at the schoolhouse I have been working on some mixed media pieces with paint paper, cloth and thread.

 

I use thread and needle to make marks through the artwork.

 

Each stitch leads onto the next, weaving over the painting.

 

Found papers intermingle with rotted and rusted cloth.

 

I like to use off- cuts of textile, paper and patterns and throw it against slabs of paint and marks.

 

In the above artwork I am enjoying the contrast of the piece of vintage cross stitch, I found in an op shop once.

 

I just let the stitches wander around and find their own place in their own time. I’m not in control and use the thread, as another tool to make marks.

 

I don want to make embroidery’s and my mistakes can be my jewels.

 

All these artworks are in progress and not yet finished. Some may just be experiments for fun and to learn from.

 

 

 

 

How to make Collages from Old Damaged Books.

August 9th, 2017

Re: Artwork & Article Published in US. Magazine.

 

 

Vintage Pulp

As, mentioned in an earlier post , (Vintage Pulp Fiction Collages) here are some photos of my published article last year, in “Sew Somerset Summer 2016” magazine. I have also included below, how you can to make your own mixed – media collage and drawings from damaged books. I get really addicted to making these little artworks and love reclaiming, tattered books, destined for the garbage, giving them a new life.

 

Supplies:

 

 

Supplies:
Damaged vintage “Pulp Fiction” books, or any other book
Acrylic gesso paint.
Coloured pencils, pens, inks, crayons etc. (I wouldn’t use felt pens as they might seep through)
Vintage fabric. (Damaged, stained, vintage tablecloths, tea towels, even old doilies)
Glue stick
Needle
Threads (any colour)

Equipment
Cutting mat
Box knife or scalpel
Scissors
Sewing machine (Optional)
Small cheap paint brush or, sponge brush
A few rags for wiping paint or glue

Instructions
Carefully cut or tear out a page from the book. This will be used for your artwork base.

To stabilize the delicate book page, paint each side with acrylic Gesso paint, leaving sections of text, and images showing.

Now for the fun part. Once the Gesso paint is dry, draw, paint, scribble and smudge, onto one side of the paper only. You can use paint, coloured pencils, ink, pens etc. Start gluing on bits of found text and images, cut from other pages in the book. It doesn’t have to make sense. It’s fun creating nonsense “gibber jabber”

Next, cut a piece of vintage cloth, about 1 inch – 2cm. larger, than the book page.

Leaving the edges of the cloth raw, hand or machine stitch the cloth to the page, on all 4 sides. Without being too precious, make random marks, by stitching and detouring across and through the piece, as you like.

Continue working on the collage with more stitching, marks and text, until satisfied.

Note: On the underside of the collage the stitching will have left some very interesting marks. Two artworks in one!

Displaying your artwork

The finished artwork could be displayed in a conventional frame, or in a double sided, glass or acrylic frame. As an installation, hang a piece of string from the ceiling and peg the artwork to the string. Both sides can be viewed when it swings around. Several collages could be used for journal pages, book making, or just as a piece of artwork to sit on a shelf in a special place.

Tips

Using damaged vintage books and vintage fabrics, adds to the character of the artwork and saves it from landfill.

Collect found papers, textile scraps and text to make collage.

Old books can be found cheaply, from second-hand shops, flea markets and library throw outs.

A sharp scalpel is very good for cutting close to the book spine.

Add a tiny amount of water to your Gesso paint to make it more translucent.

To give your page a more aged appearance, stain with a tea dye. Put any amount of tea bags in a sink, 1/4 filled with hot water. Plunge and leave until stained, then bake the page in a low oven for around 10 minutes.

Hope you enjoy creating your collage.
 

 

 

In the studio this week.

July 19th, 2017

I hurt my leg a few days ago so I haven’t been in the studio this week. Hopefully, next week, I’ll be back on track .

 

 

 

Recent paintings. Some are finished, others are paintings, still in progress.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also, while resting my leg, I’ve been sorting through my many art journals. Below are some images from my art college journal in 1994.  I noticed the colours I was using back then, are similar to what I’m working with now.

 

 

 

What did you do in your studio this week?

 

 

 

From This Place. Help Raise the Profiles of Women Artists!

July 10th, 2017

“We wanted to elevate our fellow women artists, to raise their profile in a world where it is often hard to cut through. One of the most telling statistics we found was that only 5% of artists hanging in permanent galleries worldwide were women. We took this fact and decided to do something about it, and where better to start than in our own beautiful region – on the banks of the Yarra River, in the mountains and forests we all call home?” Lindy Schneider

Lindy, Angela and to all the other artists…You are all such an inspiration and amazing creative women. I feel very privileged to be part of this project.

Photography Copyright  – Angela Rivas

Lets get behind this project and support women artists, everywhere. Please check out our Pozzible campaign ! We only have 8 days Left and your pledge will go along way to help publish this book, that will be a wonderful resource and inspiration for all people, artists, creatives and especially women.

Pozible Campaign

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BOAA – Biennale of Australian Art 2018.

June 15th, 2017

I am happy to announce I have been selected from 800 artists across Australia, to be part of BOAA-Biennale of Australian Art  in 2018.

 

 

BOAA is a multi layered art festival with various opportunities for artistic engagement. My work will be part of the ‘Hit Me With Your Best Shot’ project, which will be BOAA’s largest installation. Supported by the City of Ballarat, this installation will form an impressive sea of images representing artists Australia wide and it will be displayed in Ballarat’s historic Mining Exchange building.