You are no doubt familiar with the old saying "If life hands you a bunch of lemons, make lemonade." My 11 year-old recently shared a slightly different version,"If life hands you a bunch of lemons, make orange juice and let people wonder how you did it." So today's blog and art is inspired by that new version.
In November I was messing around with surface texture using rice paper applied with gesso and thick gesso which was scraped around with my toothed credit card. On top of that I used acrylics, watercolors, inks, watercolor pencil, etc. In the end, I had a failed painting, in the sense that it was not pleasing to the eye. On the other hand, I learned a heck of a lot.
I pulled it out of my flat files the other day, and decided to continue my experimenting. I'm not sure how the idea came to me, but I decided to cover all but two somewhat nice water areas with rice paper. This created a couple of windows into the river scene.
Once this simple act was done, I started seeing ways to respond to what was left. I first painted the rice paper with a gold/orange and looked at that for a few days. I could see that I needed to connect the two windows which I did by applying a larger square shaped line on the rice paper part with molding paste. I painted that with just a slightly darker gold orange making the connection. And then I was off on an adventure. I stamped, applied self-colored tissue and rice papers. I created a cruciform (cross-shaped) design. I moved white water across the paper horizontally with white ink and acrylic paint. Mostly I just had fun following my instincts and trusting my eye to see how to weave this all together. And "weave" is the thought that brought me the title well before it was done.
"River Tapestry," really mixed media, 15 x 21 inches. Orange Juice or More Lemons? You Be the Judge.