So much to show, so much to tell . . .

Saturday’s Show and Tell was one of the best – everything from Fairy Houses to paper-making to poetry. Michelle Belto‘s demonstration of how easy it is to make your own paper was a real eye-opener for those who’d never tried this process.

Her system is ingenious and can be done in a small space. Michelle will be teaching this method in an upcoming Artful Gathering class, but we got a Sneak Preview yesterday!

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There were lots of other fantastic S&T-ers, including the always-amazing Vicky Siptak, who showed a Fairy House that she had made for her granddaughter. It’s weatherproof to keep the fairies snug and warm in the garden, and it has its own guardian dragon. And our poets, Tom Schall and Harold Rodinsky, graced us with their eloquence. Take a look at the video:

For my own Show and Tell, I needed to share, sadly, that my space in Carousel Court will be closing at the end of October. There are several reasons for this, including the fact that my lease is up.

But I will continue having workshops (mixed media and pottery) and other gatherings in my new space soon – more to come on that. If you’ve been with me for five years or so, you’ll remember those workshops at my home studio and how much fun they were. Sometimes change is energizing, and the Studio (and SHARDS) will live on!

Wise One (detail) by Linda Rael

In the meantime, September is filled with workshops and shows, including the show that Linda Rael and I are having on September 9th and 10th. It’s called EARTHWORKS, and all of the pieces in this two-day show are inspired by natural materials. Please join us!

earthworks copy

In the next SHARDS post, I’ll show you some techniques that Lesta Frank and I developed last week while we were working on ideas for our Whiter Shades of Pale workshop. The September 17th workshop is full, but there will be another session offered in early October – stay tuned!

light angel

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Tissue techniques and encaustic exploration

15We had a full house for yesterday’s Wax and Tissue workshop. Everyone was particularly interested in how to print images on delicate tissue paper. If you do an Internet search, you’ll find all kinds of methods to do this.

Most of the methods involve taping or tacking the tissue on all four sides to a sheet of regular copy paper. I just cut the paper slightly smaller than the copy paper, put two pieces of clear tape at the top, and run that sucker through the printer. So far, so good – I printed about 25 sheets for the workshop and had only two of them crunch up in the printer. Not bad odds considering how thin tissue paper is.

In my example below, you can see how the bird image, printed on tissue paper, becomes translucent when wax is applied over it. It’s always interesting to see how unpredictable the translucent images appear when wax is applied over them. Different kinds of tissue yield different results. I use just plain old wrapping tissue and I iron it first to get the creases out. Works like a charm.

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Lyn Belisle, demonstration piece done during wax and tissue workshop

You can see in my demo piece, above, that the bird image, which was printed on plain white tissue, has a translucency that conceals and reveals elements of the collage above and below it. In the workshop, we started with two opaque “anchor” images and then added layers of wax and tissue to build up our narratives. It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience – everyone was experimenting and developing the best stories as the process evolved. Here’s the video – what do you think? Pretty cool, right?

If you’d like to see what the supply list looks like, you can go to Roses on my Table, a site developed by the fantastic Zinnia from Artful Gathering. Michelle Belto and I have an online class there on Wax and Tissue, but you don’t have to register for the class to get the supply list. You can just click on the Material and Supply List link to see both sources and “ingredients” for this project.

Encaustic Month at Lyn Belisle Studio ended on a high note! And mark your calendar for next Saturday’s Show and Tell from 2-4 pm. Happy Monday!

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Waxy weekend, comfortable camaraderie

Saturday and Sunday I taught two encaustic workshops at the Studio – both were what’s become the signature class called “Behind the Veil.” We work with vintage photos, learn about the AB3s of composition, and create lovely little mixed media stories that have depth and mystery.

On both days, everyone was relaxed, happy and spectacularly creative. I thoroughly enjoyed the company! The video shows happy smiles and super-nice work.

If you weren’t able to be there with us but would like to try this, I’m giving you a couple of handouts that we used in the workshop. Both are from my eBook called “Behind the Veil.”

Page Four has a list of materials that you’ll need to do this project along with some great tips on image sources, and Page Five shows you how to set up your workspace and gives you wax and safety info. Help yourself to these, and if you’d like to download the whole eBook, you can get it here.

Happy Monday!

Wax and Words – no worries, everything worked!

After a month away from teaching workshops, I was a little fearful about starting off the new sessions with something I hadn’t done before, a class called Words and Wax. It was inspired by some of Nancy Crawfords beautiful Love and Gratitude encaustic series pieces.

Nancy Crawford, 4x4", Even More Love and Gratitude

Nancy Crawford, 4×4″, Even More Love and Gratitude

I wanted to emphasize the mark-making within the words, so I designed a four-layer process that involved ink, stencils, graphite and stamping as the initial approach,followed by the addition of beeswax, and incising into that. The results were wonderful, thoughtful, accidental but purposeful. Please see what the students did in the video below.

I’m happy to share with you the general outline of the class in case you want to play around with this idea. You can find the steps here.


Postscript:

Ironically, just as I was writing this post about words, I received some sad news about the death of an old friend and consummate man of words, Professor John Igo. John was a San Antonio educator, writer, artist, photographer, producer, and critic. He kept us all on the straight and narrow path with our word usage in his delightful radio program called Grammar Gripes.

John leaves a legacy that is wide and deep across the arts and letters community – he will be greatly missed.

John Igo

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Philip John Evett: Goodbye, old friend

Phil and Joanne Evett with Lyn Belisle, Blanco, Texas 2010

Phil and Joanne Evett with Lyn Belisle, Blanco, Texas 2010

I met Philip John Evett in the spring of 1962. It was love at first sight – love of his work, his impossibly endearing British accent, and his enthusiasm for those of us lucky enough to be his Trinity art students. We called him “Uncle Philsy.” Sometimes we added “wicked” to it.

He taught us to weld in steel and carve in stone. He taught us a love of lyrical form and a respect for eclectic elegance. Phil was my mentor then and my friend ever after, as he was to so many of us. He died this weekend, 94 years old, a consummate artist and humanist.

Here’s a brief look at the work that friends and I saw several years ago on a visit to his inspiring studio and gallery in Blanco, Texas. Phil tells a funny story about finding the right head for a sculpture, just 20 years after the fact.

In 2012, Phil gave an informal lunchtime lecture at Blue Star Art Complex. I sat next to him and used my phone to record his remarks. Phil’s recollections and philosophy shine through despite my hand-held phone recording and the less-than-idea sound circumstances. This is a rare look at the workings of this incredible artist’s mind.

As I re-watched the video, I was particularly struck by his comments on “the quiet, long-time savoring of the moment” that is so rare these days, and then talked of his love for his peaceful life at his Blanco studio.

So many of us will miss you, Phil – thanks beyond words for gracing us with your inspiring presence, your soaring art and your everlasting friendship.


More about Philip John Evett

 

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