Tuesday, January 20, 2015


The Figure in Monotypes

Dawn Emerson taught a group of 10 artists in a two-day workshop how to make monotypes directly from life using a clothed model. Both Vivian Olsen and Janice Rhodes are High Desert Art League members. The workshop was held at A-6 in Bend.
Artist Dawn Emerson showing artists how they will create prints

On the first day Dawn began the class by showing us all the materials used in producing prints, some of her own finished monotypes, and photos of prints  by artists like Degas and others. 

Joan Sheets checking the progress of her drawing transfer
 Afterward we started sketching the model and used those drawings to create monotypes. Dawn demonstrated a method of transferring ink to paper by tracing our drawing onto a paper hinge-taped over an inked plate. Called Trace monotypes, this was an interesting and easy method to create prints.

Our very photographic model. The monoprint  below was made from adrawing done directly onto the plate.- after printing it is a reversed image.

This is from the same model, traced
from the drawing itself.
A Trace Monoprint by Vivian Olsen
'Reclining' by Vivian Olsen
'Bright Lights' by Vivian Olsen

On the second day we referred to photos we had taken of the model and continued to work on a plate covered with black ink. Instead of tracing we drew our image using the additive or subtractive method directly into the ink using various tools. 

Janice Rhodes happy with her two Indian monoprints
In both methods we then placed the inked plate, with a paper on top, onto a printing press which transferred the image from plate to paper by rolling it through the press. 
Hand printed 'Tewa Girl' by Vivian Olsen
Vivian Olsen  pulling the print from the ink plate
after rolling it through the press. The monoprint is 'Waiting'.

'Waiting' by Vivian Olsen

We also tried printing by hand by rubbing it but the light pressure left a very light image.

All the artists were delighted with their results and went home with 8 to 10 monotypes each.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Experiments with Watercolor - Vivian Olsen

Spontaneous Watercolor Surprises

What's in a wash? Be creative and wild, splash some watercolor across a paper 
and look carefully to find what is hiding there. Just an abstract design? Turn it 
around and see the vertical images and then upside down. Wow! Look hard - 
Do you see what I saw?

Here's what I saw hiding in the murky mists - I've taped a cutout image of a 
photograph of him that looks like a close cousin to that Hulk shape in the smeary 
wash. Soon I will paint that Bison into the painting as I have painted the animal 
into the design below.

 This abstract below was painted in a vertical format and looked like a waterfall at first. But I kept turning it and thinking about what critter might creep down to the water? and snow? and trees? 
Things that I saw in all those fuzzy images? 
                                           Look and imagine - what do you see?

No, I didn't find horses lurking in the snowy mist, but the space for something 
was there, waiting for it, or them, to come and drink.
               Fun? Huh? 

Try it. Let your inhibitions disappear and fly with the washes. Splash! sprinkle, spray, infuse colors and water, pour, spatter, tip and turn, and imagine.
                 V C Olsen