Looking for something to do this weekend? Head on out to Long Island City for the LIC Arts Open 6 and an opportunity to visit hundreds of artists’ studios. Have you ever looked at a painting in a gallery and wanted to know “how did they do that?” This is your chance.
Begin at Reis Studios (43-01 22nd St., LIC) with 200 artist studios to start your tour. See the inner workings of my art studio #225 where I’ll be demonstrating how I use a Gelli Plate to print the collage papers I use in my work and making FREE greeting cards for those who drop by. Come by to get yours. Studios open this Sat. & Sun. from 12-6pm. Directions below.
In my last blog post, I talked about how to best manage my two studios. One idea was to invest in duplicates of my most used tools. Some of these tools are my Gelli Arts printing plate and Speedball brayers so I purchased a second set yesterday. I wanted to play with my new tools but not worry too much about the final outcome so I decided to decorate envelopes. If I didn’t like the way they turned out, I could always use them to pay my bills with.
I started out by cutting 3″ Post-It notes in half and sticking them to the center front of the envelopes. That preserved the address white space.
Next I got out my Gelli plate, brayers, acrylic paints and stencils (some hand cut, others purchased from Stencil Girl Products). I started by adding some paint to the Gelli plate and then rolling it out into a smooth layer using a brayer. I placed the envelope face down on the plate, placed a clean piece of scrap paper on top and rolled a clean brayer over all of it to transfer the paint. I cleaned the plate and then added a second paint color to the plate. This time after rolling on the paint, I laid a stencil over the paint and then placed the envelope on top (and the scrap paper) and rolled the clean brayer over it all. This left an interesting pattern as the top layer with the first paint layer showing through the stencil gaps. I sometimes printed a third stencil layer as well. I repeated the process on the back of the envelopes.
Finally, I pulled out my paints and markers (I use Copic Markers, Zig Writer and Faber-Castell Pitt artist pens) to doodle and add some details. Voila! Some fun, usable envelopes.
The Back Side of the Envelopes
In my studio, paper wins every time. That’s because as a mixed media artist, paper is one of my favorite and most versatile mediums I use. I am starting to work on the fourth painting in my yoga series but first, I had to print some new papers to use in this painting. I have enjoyed using the gel plate (by Gelli Arts) I got for Christmas to print unique and multi-layered prints. A Gel Printing Plate looks and feels like a sheet of gelatin, but is durable, reusable and stores at room temperature. It’s easy to clean and always ready for printing. Monoprinting on a gel plate is simple and fun. The gratification is immediate, and the prints are too cool. These monoprints are only a handful of the papers I printed today using stencils, faux painting tools and more.
You can see where I used a brayer to roll on the acrylic paint, then scraped in a design and finally pressed the paper onto the plate. Voila! It’s as easy and fun as that. If I didn’t like the print, I just added another layer or two on top and ended up with some great designs. Next post, I will show you how I used these papers in my yoga painting #4.