ArtPrize 7 starts this week! Here's a look at my finished entry, a diptych titled "Portraits from the Arbor."
Still on the to-do list for AP:
- Write Artist's Statement
- Print business cards
- Hang out at my venue, Palatte Coffee and Art in GR :)
I hope you have a chance to make it to town for this year's event. ArtPrize generally has some really cool and inspiring work on display. And I can tell you that my venue specifically has some really stunning art from some very talented artists.
Here's a piece that was accepted for a group exhibition next month. The show is part of First Fridays Ypsi, a monthly "art walk" in which local businesses in Ypsilanti host artists and performers, becoming ad hoc galleries and concert venues. The September version will accompany the Festival of the Honey Bee, a celebration of Apis mellifera and the sacred relationship we share with our favorite pollinators.
About the piece: it's approximately 11x15 in. and done using my most recent batch of Black Walnut ink (using last year's walnut husks). The Call for Submissions simply required that art be related in some ways to honey bees; I wanted to do something that deviated from the typical associations (adult bees, honeycomb/hexagons, flowers), and instead chose to depict a honey bee larvae in in mid development. The style is somewhat simple, as I hoped to show the contrast between the dark background and the pale, iridescent form of the larvae. The picture above failed to capture the texture from the ink, but I'm pretty happy with the final result. Getting much more comfortable with the black walnut ink...still need to work on my insect design.
I've begun work on my entry for this year's ArtPrize competition in Grand Rapids (Sept. 23rd - Oct. 11th). I'll be using homemade black walnut ink on Arches 140 lb. hot-press watercolor paper.
Once all the ink work is finished, it'll be time to head into the forest to collect mushrooms for the spore prints! I'm so excited to be hosted by Palatte Coffee & Art this year. I think it will be the perfect venue for ArtPrize attendees to reflect upon, and connect with, the art on display.
More info on my ArtPrize 7 entry, Portraits from the Arbor.
Here's some info about my venue, Palatte Coffee & Art
Had a GREAT time this past weekend in Tecumseh for the annual Community Arts of Tecumseh "Art in the Park." AP is my longest running streak for any art fair (3 ohmygosh), and I got to see lots of familiar faces, both fellow exhibitors and guests. I had copies of Lelani and The Plastic Kingdom to sell and sign, which I didn't have in time for last year's event. It was awesome reconnecting with fans of The Woodcutter and The Most Beautiful Tree and introducing them to my newest. Admittedly, I was a bit nervous going into my first art show of the season with a new book...but people seemed to be really receptive to the book and also to it's message. I talked to a handful of teachers, so hopefully I'm able to make it out to some schools next year.
That's one down! Excited for the rest of the summer :) See you at Devil's Lake in a couple weeks.
My second commissioned piece of 2015 is done! Had a lot of fun with this one, trying new designs and experimenting with different media. This was my first time actually (kinda) keeping track of time spent on a given work, and it ended-up being right around 20 hours of active time.
The angel was done emulating a traditional Ethiopian style, in which only the angel's head is depicted, atop a semicircle of feathers and intricate patterns. An example can be seen in this picture I found, which not only provided some valuable reference for the angel, but also inspired some of my design and color choices.
This image is a detail of the ceiling in Debre Berhan Selassie Church in Gondar, Ethiopia. I hope the painting is well-received, I definitely had a great time working on it! If you're interested in a commissioned piece for yourself, please CONTACT ME and we can try to put something together :)
This is a piece for David, a friend and fellow children's book author (you can see his excellent book HERE). David also happens to be the principal at Great Lakes Elementary in West Ottawa, the same school where my sister teaches.
David asked me for a piece that depicts the traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony, and also includes an Ethiopian angel. After a little bit (A LOT) of research into these elements, I settled on this composition:
I'm trying to integrate my own style into a traditional Coptic Ethiopian style. It's been very interesting learning about the coffee ceremony and Ethiopian iconography.
I've started adding watercolor, so pics of the finished piece soon (hoooopefully!).
The 2nd annual Devils Lake Festival of the Arts is on June 20th! I had an awesome time participating last year...hoping for another day of beautiful sunshine and big crowds this year. The community is really enthusiastic and have thrown a lot of time and energy into the event, and their efforts have really paid off. You can scope the website HERE. Maybe see you out there? It's a wonderful event with lots of excellent stuff to do, see, and eat. And eat.
Earth Day 2015 is just around the corner (tomorrow, the 22nd DOY!!!) and there's still time to snag a FREE GIFT from Chico Bag or Glass Dharma when you order a copy of LELANI and THE PLASTIC KINGDOM! These convenient, stylish, durable, and reusable items provide excellent ways to kick the single-use plastic habit in 2015! Tomorrow's the last day to snag this radness, so get on it!