Wednesday, November 21, 2012


I once heard that art is about story telling and most art comes from a place of struggle and darker parts of ourselves that we are not usually used to talking about. Some examples might battling addictions, weight, depression or family hardships. To make meaningful and thought provoking work the responsibility of the artist is to go to those parts of ourselves that we keep buried away from the rest of the world.

During my last semester of school the work that I was creating was lacking and I couldn’t seem to figure out a solution to get past this block and move forward. One of my professors who knew of my struggles asked my this, “Amy, do you want to be a painter, a really good painter? Artists who are painters travel to the places of hurt, they are willing to dig deeper for source materials. How far are you willing to dig to find what matters to you?” These were hard questions for me to tackle but I also knew that if growth was to occur in my work I had to go to these places of myself that I feared. It ended being some of the best advice I received while in school and helped me to create and generate ideas for the work that I made before I graduated to the work I am still doing 10 months later. Sometimes however, an artist doesn’t always have to go to the darker, deeper parts of themselves to be creative and I think if you do want to be more of a creative person then read the books below. 

Recently I watched a presentation on TED Talks that got me thinking about what I wrote above. The speaker was Julie Burstein, the author of the book I posted below; “Spark: How Creativity Works.” This is a great read if you want a little insight into creativity. Another book to consider reading is by Daniel H. Pink titled “A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule The Future.” Anyway, happy reading and Happy Thanksgiving!! 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

While I have been working on my painting as a follow up from the drawing I completed a couple of weeks ago and posted here, I dabbled a little in Adobe Illustrator with the image. This is my first time working in Illustrator and it was so fun! With the help of a close and knowledgeable friend we worked with this image and this was the final result.

Thursday, October 25, 2012


This image began as an idea of looking up towards the sky, towards the light of heaven where hope exists. In my exhausting search to find employment I sometimes have moments of hopelessness and I  look skyward wondering when my luck will change. When will the day come when I have income coming in to cover all of my basic necessities? On the positive side, at least I have plenty of time to focus on my art work and channel some of this energy into it.

My Process:
The above piece is just the preliminary stage of what is to come. I have an idea about the direction that I want to take it.. I had craft glue from a previous project and used it to adhere the drawn image on to the canvas. Some of the shadows are entirely unintentional and are a result of the glue soaking through the paper.
I am am going to incorporate text that will be eventually hidden by drips of oil paint starting at the top of the canvas and cascade down over the image. The drips will be thinned out with turpentine which will allow me to do multiple layers. Then I will go back into the negative space (the orange) and apply different colors to create the illusion of depth and space. The final layer will be my salt solution that i have used in previous work.
I think I have to go back to the drawing board and re work the image so it appears that she is in fact looking up towards the sky. More to come!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

A peak into my process

With this weeks post, I wanted to give you a peak into my process in creating my rust pieces. I start out with a blank metal piece and apply paint to the surface. I then apply the salt solution on top of this. As seen in the first picture the metal plate is wet and the salt solution bubbles. For optimal results I prefer to let the plate dry in the sun, as this allows the salt to form a crystalized layer. After the second phase as seen above, the solution dries to a flaky texture and lifts from the surface. This is an exciting moment for me and I am tempted to pick at it...but I don't.
This current salt solution just sits on top which allows me a little more control but I am getting bored. There needs to be more risk involved. I'm looking into different metals that I can combine together to eat away the surface of the metal plate. The questions that I am asking myself are; If I continue to work in the salt solution, what can I do to seal it and will the sealant continue to produce the results that I want? (in the last post I sealed the solution with Epoxi Resin, and I didn't care for the results), will it matter if the sealant was matte and not gloss? Do I even want to move forward with any kind of sealant, period? What will happen with the new metals? How will this change the plate's appearance? Will it be different from the salt solution appearance? How many applications will I need to do?
I have a few more ideas of the direction that I want to take my work including using new metals. But for now I will leave you with a quote from Francis Ford Coppola, "If you don't take a risk then how are you going to make something really beautiful, that hasn't been seen before." 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Epoxi Resin

When I attended the Village Art Festival last month another artist suggested that I try Epoxi Resin to seal my rust pieces. I was and still am looking for something that will seal the rust solution the sits atop the metal surface with changing the initial composition. I was excited at the idea of Epoxi Resin and went out and bought Ultra Glow. The packaged contains Resin and a Hardener. After much reading and prepping I decided to give it a go. Below I have posted a rust piece that has not been treated and two that have been treated with the Epoxi Resin. I am not sure how I feel about the shiny surface because I feel that it changes the piece and takes away from the idea of a rustic look. I'm thinking that I will look into another approach to seal the rust solution or work with different chemicals that actually rust metal instead of the current solution that sits on the surface. What are your thoughts, suggestions?

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Village Festival 2012

I participated in my first art festival over the weekend of August 18 & 19th. It was also the first time that I was showing my work to the public outside of the college atmosphere. It was a really great experience and I met some nice people. The weeks and days leading up to the festival were so overwhelming and stressful. Even though I knew I was organized I still felt like I wasn't. Maybe it wasn't such a smart idea to continue making work and prepping right up to the night before. I felt that the whole weekend I was fully turned someone had flipped a switch and I was running on adrenaline.
I wasn't nervous until I arrived to set up my booth and the first wave of people started arriving. I was not expecting to win first place and shocked that I was chosen. I was so excited! There was some very good work at the festival and I couldn't help but compare my work to the other artists. None the less I felt like I was finally living my dream of being an artist. I had made my work, shown it and sold some of it. It was cool.
I couldn't have gotten through the weekend with out the help of my parents, family and close friends. My Mom sat with me both days at my booth and watched over things when I needed a lunch or bathroom break or just needed to sit and rest. My Dad helped me with last minute prepping, bought me lunch and helped me pack my car up after the festival. Thanks my friends who stopped in to say hi and to those individuals that bought some of my pieces. Participating in the festival was a good experience and I received great feedback and advice from those that stopped by. I was completely exhausted by the end of the weekend but so happy that  I did this and may look for another festival to attend in the future.

Monday, July 23, 2012

More Rust

Tape 10"x10"

White River 10"x10"

Gold Penny 10"x10"

Remember 9"x6"

These are just a few of my most recent pieces. I haven't been blogging lately because I have been busy packing for my move to South San Francisco. In my current place I complete most of my work in the back yard, weather permitting. I 'm a little concerned how I will continue to create work because I will be living in a small space with no back yard and no porch. Hopefully I don't let the space issue deter me from creating.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Second Phase

Second Phase

Hello again. I've applied the salt solution to this piece last week. I really like how it has turned out. It felt good to be outside working. It was a good day. I almost forgot how much I enjoy doing this. I am going to go back into it with paint and possibly another layer of the solution. I don't really have a plan as far as compositionally of the direction that I want it to go. I do however, have to figure out a way to make the salt solution stick to the canvas. Someone offered the suggestion of using Rustoleum. Any other ideas, please let me know. Until next time!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Waiting for Paint to Dry

While I'm waiting for my painting to dry outside I decided to catch up on some books that I have been reading. One is called "The Element" (Ken Robinson) and the other is called "Steal Like An Artist"(Austin Kleon). The Element discusses how finding your passion in life changes everything. The Element is the "place where the things you love to do and the things that you are good at come together."It's that thing that brings you the most joy when you are engaged with it, time doesn't matter, something you have a nature talent for. What is it for you? Have you found it yet? For me, making art and painting is my Element. I have to do something creative daily and if I don't I feel stale, like an old piece of bread.

I have always enjoyed making art. I can remember as a child always favoring the art projects in school over math. Although I liked science, I didn't enjoy it like I enjoyed art. Then I kinda forgot about making art until junior high school I took an arts/crafts class and photography. In high school I took another art class. My love for making art as far as paintings didn't really hit me until college. I will never forget that moment.

I had been considering what I was going to major in for some time. I couldn't decide and interestingly enough, art was far from my mind. I knew that my major had to be something that I really enjoyed. I then decided that I needed a few electives and chose to take an Introduction to Art & Design class and Introduction to Color Theory class. In both classes I was learning about line, shape, negative space, color relationships, the basics. It wasn't until I began a project in Color Theory about mixing color that the idea, the light bulb turned on that I though "I LOVE this." I knew at this very moment of mixing color that this act of creating was what I wanted to do forever. I felt a rush of excitement and joy like I was going to burst. Much like I have felt over the years and even now when creating work. I also felt it too during one of my experiences working with kids and art.

The second book was given to me as a graduation gift. "Steal Like An Artist" is for artists and non-artists. Everyone, I believe has creative potential. The book gives a list of the 10 things you need to unlock your creativity. I like that it mentions in the book that it's okay to steal ideas from others. Being in school and becoming trained to be an artist I was constantly asked what my ideas were? Why did I paint this or draw that? I also sat with other and shared ideas and became inspired and influenced by other's ideas.

Both books are fascinating. I do hope you read them.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Self Doubt

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Welcome to my creative blog! I've been wanting to have a blog for some time now. Here, I will share my creative activities including paintings, drawings, crafts and books that I am reading or have read. I will share some ideas and thoughts about my work and my world. So, come on in, stay awhile, and I hope you like what you see.