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Archive for the ‘Illustration’ Category

This is the first set of nine records I’ve created for my new series Rise of the Fukushima Monsters 

Rise of the Fukushima Monsters - Set of nine

They’re the next step on from my Fearsome friends series, bringing in new characters and an underlying dialog to do with mutation caused by radioactive waste and what is happening within our oceans at present …And what may come in the future if we don’t just manage to kill everything off first.

New OrderFive

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I’ve been slowly working on a new series of works for a while now – I’m looking at pushing my orchid mash-up pieces forward more, trying to coax them into something greater than the contained tangle of plants which is their current state.

I want to increase the scale of these pieces.  Growing them bigger with the addition of many, many more malevolent elements.  I want to feed them with clutter and random objects until they become wild and overgrown and sprawl across large scale sheets of watercolour paper…

on white

But I find myself lacking.  Lacking time and space and energy to fill these large sheets of paper with the overgrown tangle of plants I see in my head.  Lacking the discipline to stay up and create, in the darkness when everyone else sleeps – Or to stay home when my friends are out having fun… I’m really not very good when it comes to missing out.  And discipline would definitely be needed to push through such a large project to completion… Not be sidetracked by the bright monsters and birds who also call for attention in my head.

Instead, I’m letting it branch off to the side.   Keeping it smaller and more achievable.  Same same, but different.  Playing with moving my paintings away from my safe and comforting paper and onto beautiful reverse linen canvas.  Simple, and yet a challenge for me – Still working with the paint I love, but in a new way : Gouache is water-based, used in a similar way to watercolour.  When painted onto an unprimed porous surface it sinks in and bleeds out – A nice effect if you were doing a silk painting… But not what I want.

Deaths head in progress

So I’ve changed up my process : I’m layering it between heat sealed flat acrylic – Like the white base layers below images on screen printed tee-shirts.  Carefully carefully, so the gouache doesn’t bleed off the edges and onto the unprimed fiber.  And then there is the issue of binding the layers of gouache – You see, if it builds up, it has the tendency to flake.  Another layer.  Varnish.  But only on the painted area.  To contrast with the matteness of the natural linen.  Slow.  Like watching paint dry.  …But I have to say, I’m loving these new steps in the process!

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Recently, I was given a stack of cast-off scratched, or just really bad House records – Yaya… Talk about score!

So here’s my newest work created using one of said records as the support :

I really wanna do a series of these now… Just got to find the time/ motivation between the moving and sorting out the mess which is my life of late.  They’re about all I’m up to creative wise – A bit of bright, slightly warped colour to take me away from it all.

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These are a couple of quick little sketches I painted up a while back now, to get my handback into painting after the massive break I had from it at the start of the year.

They’re kind of a carry on from my Tanager and orchid pieces I started on last year, but in a more relaxed, sketchy style.

I love how bright these little ones are – A splash of rainbow colour.  They make me really happy to look at… I think I need to do more!

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Just before Christmas I had the pleasure of decorating a friends office wall with a quick chalk sketch.  Fast forward three months down the track and well, that decorated Pohutukawa tree is a little outdated calendar wise…  So they asked me back in to create them a new scene for the wall.  This is what I came up with :

Full chalk pic

Initially the idea was to do something to do with the changing of the seasons. However here in New Zealand we don’t really get any of the colour changing trees, or a fall harvest of pumpkins.  So I thought I’d go with a beach scene with Toi Toi and other such grasses in yellows, browns and oranges.  Only, after sketching in the Dunes, it was looking a little too much like the dry farmlands up and down the country thanks to the drought thats been going on… Bit of a problem really.

Left chalk pic

After a quick colour change to swap the orange out for greens, I was left with a much fresher image – Something to remember our wonderful summer by instead. Personally I would love a beach in my office, if I was going to have to work in one…

Just picture friday drinks, beach picnic styles with a couple of blankets on the floor and maybe a beach umbrella or even a palm tree thrown in for added tropicalness!

Right chalk pic

And yeah, those are a couple of sneaky easter eggs you see hiding down there at the end. Decided to throw them in, what with easter hitting us right around the corner… Strategically placed so they can be removed once the holiday has passed.

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It was a friends birthday last week, and nothing in my stockpile of currently finished work seemed quite right.  So I finished off this baby thats been sitting in my half formed to-do stack :

Its one of four I started way back in Melbourne last year, as a carry on from my first colour blocked Sugar Skulls – Which I then got a little sidetracked from when my print class at APW hit.  The aim was to do a more detailed set, but it meant more time involved in the finishing layers. They somehow never got completed.

Well this one gave me the kick I needed to finish off the others :

I love the bright blocks of colour.  Glad I’ve finally got around to getting them done!

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Way back when I picked out my frames for the work I put up in Sketch and Tulip, I also managed to get my grubby mitts on a set of three extra blank frames of the same type, that I could fill later at my leisure.  Well my little Tanager and Orchid pieces got me on a bit of a roll, and the next obvious course to take was to combine the two together.

Katies birds-2

This is the first piece completed.  I wanted an off-white background, so used the tea stain method I usually use with the handmade Khadi paper, only this time on Stonehenge hot press printing paper. Its given it a lovely soft tan colour which complements really well with the pink tones in the orchids.

Katies birds-3

Blue-winged Mountain Tanager – Anisognathus somptuosus (Above). This little bird is found in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela. Its natural habitat is subtropical or tropical moist montane forests.

Katies birds-4

Western Tanager – Piranga ludoviciana (Above). This little one can be found in coniferous woods across western North America from the Mexico-U.S. border as far north as southern Alaska – They are the northernmost-breeding tanager. However, they also migrate, wintering from central Mexico to Costa Rica.

Katies birds framed-1

Heres a pic of it all framed up.  I have one more on the go awaiting the top feather detailing and linework, and as yet one more frame awaiting the right inspiration – Though most likely another on this theme.  So loving how they are turning out!

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