Prints 4 Non-Profits News!

Just a reminder to visit the Prints 4 Non-Profits site for a weekly selection of 11×14 prints up for bid. All profits from sales are donated to a different local charity and bidding starts at just $5! Bids placed by midnight tomorrow (5/1/10) will help Noble of Indiana and, starting on Monday (5/3/10), the profits for May will go to Best Buddies, Indiana. Details on both these charities, as well as directions for bidding, can both be viewed at Prints 4 Non-Profits. Start or expand your art collection will you help a great cause!

Click, bid, win!


Art For a Cause!

Just a reminder that next week kicks off the premier of “Prints 4 Non-Profits” an online blog/auction site where you can bid on prints of my artwork. Bidding starts at just $5 and all profits are donated to a local charity.  For the month of April that happens to be Noble of Indiana.  A new selection of prints will be posted each Monday so check in often to catch some great deals on art and help a great cause…what could be better?

Click & bid!


Mixed Media Wall Sculpture

"between the flowers" mixed media wall sculpture (c) 2010, Lynne Medsker

A few weeks ago I showed you a piece of art that I collaboratively created with some of the participants at Noble of Indiana. It turned out pretty cool and I was pleased with it, especially for a first try at making a piece like that.  Last Friday I was invited by Noble to be part of their spring event “A Noble Evening in the Garden” which previews the local flower & patio show. My part in the evening was to create/complete a work of art (while in one of the gardens) that would be auctioned off at the end of the evening.  I debated a while on what I would create and then decided I would make another mixed media wall sculpture. I have a box of wood already cut into random shapes so I dug through it and pulled out the pieces I thought I would use, in addition to a piece of wood with a ridged surface that I would use for a center piece.  Knowing I wouldn’t have the luxury of several days to let glued pieces dry I decided to assemble the piece with screws so it would be sturdy as soon as it was complete.

work in progress (image #1)

After I had the layout and attachments figured out I unassembled it and began doing some initial painting of the back and front of the piece. I also covered the center piece with aluminum and colored it with inks. Choosing the accent color without knowing what the rest of the piece would look like was a bit challenging but, since this WAS a flower show, I decided to stick with the nature theme and colored it green, hoping that it would blend in with the rest of the artwork when it was all finished.

work in progress (image #2)

Then I started sorting through different papers, prints, clippings and embellishments as I decided what to bring with me to the show.

work in progress (image #3)

I tried out one of the tree images on a piece of the sculpture.  I looked good but I later discovered that I had put in on upside down!  Sigh! Oh well, there’s nothing that can’t be covered up later. I reassembled the entire piece before packing it up so that I wouldn’t have to carry a heavy cordless drill with me. (I had restricted myself to only bringing items I could carry in one trip!) Here’s how it looked after it was primed (including the upside down tree image):

work in progress (image #4)

I had also decided to print some images on transparency paper and sprayed/sealed them so that they could be layered onto the image. Here are a couple of the images that I printed out:

hand-painted photo of a tree (c) Lynne Medsker
four versions of a watercolor painted (c) Lynne Medsker

Then I packed everything up and was off to the show! I set up my supplies and started to work. It’s always interesting working in public and getting reaction to the work in progress.  There were several people interested enough to keep stopping in and checking on the piece from time to time and others who saw the initial work and scurried away, never to be seen again! I’m the first to admit that some creations don’t look that great till you get to the end, so I’m sure the early visitors weren’t terribly impressed.  I had hoped to have photos of the progress to share with you but, honestly, once I got into the groove (and saw the deadline looming for when it had to be done) I didn’t take a break for anything – photos included!  When it was complete I did snap a few photos of if, knowing it would be whisked away to auction and I would never see it again. Working with the floral/nature theme felt a bit different but it was fun to explore and fit the theme of the evening. Had I created this in the studio it certainly would have turned out differently but that’s part of the fun & challenge of creating “on the spot”. I know I would have made the center piece a different color, maybe something in the orange/rust hues to blend more with the rest of the piece or even a pink/red hue. Who knows! Here is a close-up photo of the middle section:

"between the flowers" (close-up) mixed media wall sculpture (c) 2010, Lynne Medsker

You can see some of the layers of tree & branch images that were printed on transparency paper, as well as some of the under layers with the flower images on them. There is a small quote that is layered on it a piece (not shown here) that, unfortunately, now I can’t find the words to. It was still covered in acrylic when I took the photo so it’s not clear enough to read. Even if  I can’t quote it to you exactly I know the final part of it says that he’s never as happy as “when I walk between the flowers” and that is where the title came from.

I still have lots of wood pieces left and ideas for other, more slowly & carefully created, wall sculptures. I know I’ve committed to make one for another charity event so once that is complete I’m sure you’ll see it here.  Between now & then who knows what might show up!

Keeping us both guessing,


Newest collaborative art

A few days ago I mentioned working on a collaborative art piece using paint “skins”.  Here are some images taken during the creation of the piece, as well as the final result.  The paint skins are basically thin(ish) layers of acrylic paint that are applied to a plastic surface and then peeled off to be used as layers of color.  I had some success peeling off larger pieces and some failures that were just tiny scraps of color.  I think next time making the layers of paint a bit thicker would make it easier to peel them off intact, where the paint was thin they seemed to rip and tear.  This piece was put together on a 30×24″ canvas that I drew 6×6″ squares on to form a grid.  I started by laying the skins around in a random fashion, just kind of seeing how they looked.  

paint skins (work in progress)
paint skins (work in progress)
paint skins, close up
paint skins, close up

I think I mentioned before how shiny they were on one side?  🙂  After I peeled and laid out most of the pieces it was time to decide where the other materials were going to be placed.  

black & white drawings by Noble artists
black & white drawings by Noble artists

I had several black & white drawings done by the artists that participated in the project that needed to be added in, as well as song lyrics, and some images to represent Mick Jagger/The Rolling Stones.  Eventually I decided that some of the squares on the grid needed to be painted black to add a little interest so I did that, as well as using a black marker to define the the grid pattern.  By that time the paint skins had been on & off the canvas several times so many of them did not end up in their original position.  As I began attaching all the pieces to the canvas with clear acrylic gel medium I also decided I couldn’t just stay “in the box” of the grid pattern (it’s good to be outside the box, isn’t it?!) so the paint skins began to reach across the pattern into other boxes and overlapping each other in some places.  Then I went back and peeled off a few more paint skins to fill in areas that seemed to need a bit more color/interest.  Eventually everything was attached and I left the piece to dry.  The next day I was fairly pleased with the composition but felt like it was too orderly/compartimentalized, even with some of the skins stretching across the borders I had created.  I had played with spray webbing before and still had part of a can of black left, which seemed to be the easiest way to bring the piece together (although I could have done it with drizzles of paint if need be).  A few quick sprays and I finally felt like it was finished.  

baby youre a rich man collaborative art (c) Lynne Medsker & others
"baby you're a rich man" collaborative art (c) Lynne Medsker & others

It was fun playing with some new techniques and ideas and coming up with a piece that wasn’t like anything I’d done before!  If you’d like to see this and the other collaborative artwork created with the artists from Noble of Indiana are currently on display at the Wheeler Art Center.



Playing with “skins”

Part of the art project that I am doing with the artists at Noble of Indiana involves the use of acrylic paint “skins”.  These are basically a layer of acrylic paint that is left to dry on a non-stick surface and then peeled up to use within other artwork.  Here are images of a few skins we created during my visit there:

The front/top side (that you see in the pictures) dried to a matte type finish but the underneath, when peeled off of the plastic, is very shiny and has an even more interesting pattern than the top.  These will be intermixed with drawings done by the Noble artists as well as some other images, laid in a grid-like pattern.  Or that’s how I am proceeding at the moment, it is always difficult to say where I’ll end up! 🙂

I had read about paint skins in a few different forums and then saw some in action in Martha Marshall’s blog (a wonderfully inspiring blog with loads of yummy images!).  They just looked like too much fun to resist!

To see the finish project join me at a Noble “Ode To The Beatles” present by Noble of Indiana and Wheeler Art Center.  Enjoy art collaboratively created by Noble artists paired with local artists & arts organizations, all focused on the theme of the Beatles and other prominent 60’s musicians.  Live music, dance performances and more are on tap for the evening, all to the sounds of The Beatles! The opening is this Friday, June 5th, from 6 to 10 p.m. at the Wheeler Art Center.   I had the pleasure of collaboratively creating an art piece featuring Mick Jagger/The Rolling Stones!

Hope to see you Friday!