Friday, November 26, 2010

For the Love of Wood...



I love carved wood....intricate artisan pieces that tell a story...no resin reproductions please!


Asian, English, it doesn't matter....I love the intricacy of the shadow and dimension.



Nothing compares to the time worn patina on carved wood...



Artist Patrick Gracewood understands the nature of wood, how to use it's graining and shape to it's best advantage.





Root carvings have their own uniqueness...they must evolve from the shape of the roots.

sculpture.net

The design must flow in harmony with the shape of the gnarled roots.


Hiromitsu-japan.com

Accepting the roots and using them  as part of the design.




Okokchina.com

A good artist will see the finished design in the shape of the roots before it is begun.


Okokchina.com



They will work with the roots, creating a harmonious sculpture


arts.cultural-china.com
Using the growth of the roots to tell a new story....


asian-culture-shop.com
Exposing the beauty that was inside all the time!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Special Delivery!


I love the mailman this week! He brought me three very unique books I had ordered....


The first surprise was from Lala Ema and her blog- My Castle in Spain. Lala is designing some wonderful paper items and has an etsy store to purchase from. My journal came and it is even better than the photos depicted!





Lala wrapped my journal as a gift and the detail did not go unnoticed. Note the fabulous tassels on the spine of the journal.



The front design is from a postage stamp surrounded with punch work and four small beads.




The best surprise was finding the marbled paper inside!


My next postal delivery was the newly published Faux Forum Artbook 2010. This book is a collaboration of artwork by members of the Faux Forum.



I submitted a decorative ornament design in grisaille. It was nice to finally hold the book in my hands and see the other work submitted!




If that wasn't enough, a third package arrived yesterday! The new book on Madeleine Castaing!! This is the most comprehensive book to date on Castaing's style and life.


There are over 250 illustrations and appendix to her favorite fabric and carpet designs.




Hopefully, books are a part of your life....real books that you can hold and smell the paper. Call me a purist, but a virtual book is just not the same! Be sure to include a good book in your holiday shopping!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Grottesca in San Antonio...


Grottesca was the buzz word in San Antonio this past week with the  arrival of Carolina D'Ayala Valva of Artelier studio of Rome.




Leslie and Nicola Vigini opened their studio for an intensive four day class with Carolina on the art of egg tempera grottesca. Leslie and Nicola operate an extremely creative studio in San Antonio and catered completely to the needs of each student.


Carolina designed a panel for the class including basic grottesca ornamentation. Once the design was transferred to canvas, the key color was applied in layered washes.


Classes went from 9:00 am till sometimes 7:00pm...the Viginis provided lunch daily and snacks for the marathon hours.


 Even Nicola  participated in painting the panel.


Tempera grassa or "fat" tempera (oil tempera) was the medium used for this class. The beauty of egg tempera is the building of layers of color to create depth and shading. 


Grottesca is known for it's attention to detail...in fantasy borders and intricate foliage. The tempera has a matte , organic feel which cannot be duplicated through other mediums.




This is my finished panel...I would not trade anything for the knowledge learned this week on this Renaissance process.  Thanks to Carolina for her dedication and patience with her students and special thanks to the Viginis for supporting the art of decoration!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Crocodile Smiles...


Thought you might like to see what I have been up to. I just finished a project for a client's new home....


This was the dining room before the project began...

The clients had just moved in their new home and there was no definition to the rooms. I needed to anchor their large painting and give the dining room an identity!


They wanted a masculine look and were drawn to a Ralph Lauren style of decorating. Crocodile to the rescue! I created large panels of crocodile on each wall to give the room some weight and counterbalance the large cast stone columns.


The clients felt the existing columns looked unfinished and needed some magic as well..


To give a more "finished" look , I troweled the columns with venetian plaster and painted the bases and capitals a contrasting color .


Now the banister, steps and wooden floors came together with that simple touch!

The dining room began to take on its' own identity and express the client's tastes.


To offset the heavy panels and draw the eye upward, I painted a simple, light design in crest fashion of crossed branches, oak leaves and acorns over each panel.


Done in a provence style, the "crests" give the room added height and interest on each wall.


When guests walk into the home, they  know immediately the lifestyle of the owners. Make sure you have architectural elements in your home and balance them with personal style!

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