.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}
   Welcome to my blog! I'll be posting thoughts about art, photos, happenings, and other things that strike me--and hopefully my readers--as interesting. And please visit my website by clicking the link to the right--thanks!

   Also please check out my second blog, The Painting Archives to see older (pre-2004) paintings for sale.


Thursday, December 03, 2009
  gifts for painters

Although I hesitate to do anything to contribute to Christmas commercialization, there are a lot worse things you could give your favorite oil-and-cold-wax painter (or yourself) than interesting art supplies. So for what it's worth, here are three of my favorite recent discoveries for creating texture and interesting surfaces. (Those of you familiar with my work will know that I use a variety of tools in my work, very few of them brushes.)

Wilton Dough Scraper: (many thanks to artist Jen Bradford for this tip.) Having tried various types of squeegees on the market, I am really pleased with the versatility and just-right flexibility of the silicon blade on this piece of cooking equipment. The handle is very comfortable and it is a well-made little item, as opposed to most of the cheap squeegees sold for cleaning windows that are a bit awkward to use, and quickly deteriorate when subjected to the rigors of abstract painting. I am also very enamored of a line of products that perform in a similar way--and are actually intended as art supplies--called Colour Shapers (google that for many places to purchase.) But they are pricey, and I can now recommend this dough scraper as a low-cost alternative. It's available on amazon.com and probably at lots of cooking equipment outlets--though I never did find one when I was looking. (Jen finally mailed me one!) Most dough scrapers out there have metal, not silicone blades, and while they may have their uses (for dough anyway) I suspect a metal blade would be too rigid for expressive painting.

Three in One Baren Kit: I was checking out at Wet Paint in St. Paul yesterday (my favorite art supply store) when the helpful sales guy started demonstrating this little object for me, and I was won over. It is a printmaking tool, and for anyone who uses transferring techniques in their work, or would like to create small stamps to use for texture and linear interest, this is a fun little toy. The "three in one" refers to the rounded baren at one end for rubbing/transferring, a cutting tool (the handle screws off and you can attach any of 5 cutting blades) and the ability to turn the whole thing into a stamper by cutting a design into one of the small rubber disks supplied, and then attaching it by its sticky back to the baren. Granted this is a rather lightweight plastic object (which gives it that toy-like appeal I guess) but it works great--I tried carving into one of the disks in the studio this morning, and used it to apply the design to a painted surface. All of this fun for only $9.95! and if you buy this at Wet Paint they throw in a bag of ten of the little rubber discs free for your carving pleasure.

Clayboard: This is not a new product to me--it is made by the same company, Ampersand, that produces the Gessobord that I use in all of my work. So I've been aware of it for years but had never considered using it in my oil and cold wax painting. Yesterday during my shopping spree at Wet Paint, I asked another helpful sales person (that store is full of 'em) for one of Ampersand's new large sized Gessobord panels (40"x30") and was told they were out of stock. However, it was suggested that I try the same sized Clayboard panel which they did have on hand. After this morning's painting session, I have to say that there are advantages to this surface that may possibly make it even better for my particular techniques that Gessobord, which has a very slightly grainy or pebbly surface (Claybord is completely smooth, and drawing and moving paint around on it was just delicious.) Even more interesting, Claybord is highly absorbent and so the initial layers of wax/oil and paint stick that I applied this morning dried very quickly. I was able to build up a very complex texture in far less time than I am used to...on the other hand it was slightly disconcerting to find the oil drying almost as fast as acrylic. I was told that this effect will be most pronounced in the first few layers of paint, so as the work progresses, the paint will act more as I am used to. So far, I haven't time tested this product, but it looks very promising. Stay tuned for my report after the painting is done...
 
Comments:
Rebecca, You have been generous in sharing your paintings, and now, you extend that generosity to possible tools of yumminess...Thank you so much.
I hope the holidays are all you need them to be...
 
Thanks for the great info Rebecca.I love using unique objects/tools to paint with. I wanted to pass along an online store that has great prices for the Ampersand panels. I use these also and have found that Jerrys Artarama do great sales and if you buy over a certain amount shipping is free. Have a great Holiday!
 
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home

       www.rebeccacrowell.com




     September 2005 /      October 2005 /      November 2005 /      December 2005 /      January 2006 /      February 2006 /      March 2006 /      April 2006 /      May 2006 /      June 2006 /      July 2006 /      August 2006 /      September 2006 /      October 2006 /      November 2006 /      December 2006 /      January 2007 /      February 2007 /      March 2007 /      April 2007 /      May 2007 /      June 2007 /      July 2007 /      August 2007 /      September 2007 /      October 2007 /      November 2007 /      December 2007 /      January 2008 /      February 2008 /      March 2008 /      April 2008 /      May 2008 /      June 2008 /      July 2008 /      August 2008 /      September 2008 /      October 2008 /      November 2008 /      December 2008 /      January 2009 /      February 2009 /      March 2009 /      April 2009 /      May 2009 /      June 2009 /      July 2009 /      August 2009 /      September 2009 /      October 2009 /      November 2009 /      December 2009 /      January 2010 /      February 2010 /      March 2010 /      April 2010 /      May 2010 /      June 2010 /      July 2010 /      August 2010 /      September 2010 /      October 2010 /      November 2010 /      December 2010 /      January 2011 /      February 2011 /      March 2011 /      April 2011 /      May 2011 /      June 2011 /      July 2011 /      August 2011 /      September 2011 /      October 2011 /      November 2011 /      December 2011 /      January 2012 /      February 2012 /      March 2012 /      April 2012 /      May 2012 /      June 2012 /      July 2012 /      August 2012 /      September 2012 /      October 2012 /      November 2012 /      December 2012 /      January 2013 /      February 2013 /      March 2013 /      April 2013 /      May 2013 /      June 2013 /      July 2013 /      August 2013 /      September 2013 /      October 2013 /      November 2013 /      December 2013 /      January 2014 /      February 2014 /      March 2014 /      April 2014 /      May 2014 /      June 2014 /      July 2014 /      August 2014 /      September 2014 /      October 2014 /      November 2014 /      December 2014 /      January 2015 /      February 2015 /      March 2015 /      April 2015 /      May 2015 /      June 2015 /      July 2015 /      August 2015 /      September 2015 /      October 2015 /      November 2015 /      December 2015 /      January 2016 /      February 2016 /      March 2016 /      April 2016 /      June 2016 /      July 2016 /      August 2016 /      September 2016 /      October 2016 /      November 2016 /      December 2016 /      January 2017 /      February 2017 /      March 2017 /      May 2017 /

       Rebecca Crowell