Monday, March 11, 2019

Spring in the Desert


Last week we went on a lovely wildflower adventure to Organ Pipe National Monument with a group from Tohono Chul Park. We had a lovely time with many stops on the way in order to observe and learn about all the plants which are beginning to blossom now that it is spring in the desert. Our leader was a very knowledgable woman who has written several books on plants and birds of the Southwest.

I tried to remember every plant we saw but there were so many, I lost track. I did however take some cuttings back to my studio in order to make mono prints from them.

The plant above is called Bladderpod. It makes for an interesting print. At least I think so. Not all plants make good prints but I am learning so many new plants and the experiments are never ending.

The colors I have used here are Burnt Sienna and Paynes gray open acrylics. I get such a nice print with the open acrylics. Very different than the regular fluid acrylics.

We had such a nice time that we signed up for a birding trip in April. The same woman will be our guide so I am really looking forward to that!


Monday, March 4, 2019

Cyanotype class

Brittlebush cyanotype

Oh that blue!

This past weekend I took a very interesting class on cyanotype. A local photographer, Nan Wollman, taught the class and I really learned so much. I never really understood what this process was all about and now I do!

Basically you mix specific chemicals, brush them on paper, and after they are dry you put your image or objects on top of the paper and set it outside in the sun under glass. Then you rinse the chemicals off and voila! Beautiful image!

I was the only person who brought plants. The others in the class brought "negatives" that they created by taking a photo, turning it into black and white and then printing it out on a laser printer on acetate. Then the acetate is placed on the treated paper and set in the sun. The black acts as a mask and remains blue or cyan and the white stays white. It is truly fascinating. I never knew that blue prints were the original cyanotype!

And after many years of being a graphic designer, I now understand what the C in CMYK really means! (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black)