I made a last-minute decision to participate in ArtPrize 2018, and received a last-minute confirmation from Palatte Coffee & Art to host my piece. ArtPrize encourages (demands that?) artists explore large format. I’m still relatively inexperienced in creating large works, but I was excited to show a new piece from my “arbor” cycle. My paintings from this series are done using homemade black walnut dye, along with a handful of other media such as gold leaf, gouache, watercolor, and my beloved mushroom spore prints. Palatte is an awesome gallery space and they are an absolute pleasure to work with.
The biggest challenge of preparing for ArtPrize this year was making my own custom frame. Having works this size framed professionally is incredibly expensive, and I wanted to explore the DIY process to cut costs. Aside from all of the planning and figuring, the work itself went quick, and the materials were cheap (the plexiglass was the most expensive part). All told, I spent less than a quarter of what I spent to have a similar-sized piece framed a few years ago. I’ve built 2 more large frames since the first, and the process is steadily improving.