What I've Been Working On: August 2018
Wow, what a month! I apparently have been very busy. Ha. I feel like my fingers are on fire (in a good way like I can't stop making things and also in a bad way because they hurt from making so many things). It really feels like my hands are trying to make up for their year of low energy levels by trying to literally create every spare minute. Mentally I love it but also wish I could slow down a bit and maybe not lay awake for hours in bed thinking about painting. But what can you do in these periods except just roll with what your body is telling you to do? Making makes me happy.
The picture above is of my big work in progress: an embroidered tapestry. Real tapestries are woven on a loom, so I make sure to specify that this is an embroidery. It's the largest scale of embroidery I have attempted and will eventually be hung with dowels in the top and bottom sleeves. This picture shows the lower left quadrant, which I have done the most work on. I've really let it grow organically and am pretty happy so far!
I've been oil painting up a storm as soon as James falls asleep every night. I'm so excited to be using oil paints, I am just itching to try my hand at all kinds of different oil paintings: portraits, street scenes, landscapes, florals, I want to paint it all! For my first street scene I chose this shot of James St. North, my favourite street in Hamilton because I love so many of the shops and so many of the shop owners too. I took this just after eating at the restaurant on the far left, Charred, where we eat all the time because they make excellent and gluten free chicken!
Mocha was my first pet portrait attempt... and I LOVED IT. Loved painting her, loved pet portraits, was astonished that it looked so amazing on a first attempt. People also seemed to respond amazingly well to it and I got a bunch of commission requests within a couple hours of posting the unfinished portrait! So expect more oil painted animals to show up soon, because I am really into it right now! (Also really into the geometric colour blocked and minimalist background!)
If you follow me on instagram you saw more than your fair share of these three pieces! Here are the three originals together: the oil painting, the watercolour and pencil illustration and the embroidery. I think I've decided to call these "Triple Takes" when I approach a scene three times. One thing that I really love about these Triple Takes is that they really pull together and unify all of my areas of practice. Sometimes I feel like my work is all over the place (especially when I find another instagram artist whose portfolio is 100% unified and all one style!) but I also don't ever see myself sticking to just one thing. I love growing and changing and trying new stuff, even if it does make my portfolio look eclectic at best. Ha.
In addition to these, I finished knitting a baby sweater and booties for my cousins baby and finished one of the socks for my sister and am about halfway through the second sock. My knitting time has been interrupted by the tapestry since there are really two kinds of time for making art in my life right now: when the kids are asleep I paint and work on the computer and when they are awake but busy playing I can knit or embroider. So it's currently more embroidery than knitting!
Some other stuff in progress that I don't have pictures to share of yet include the commissions I've been working on since most of them are gifts, a portrait of my moms dog Tucker that is in progress, and some embroidered pins and pendants I am playing around with. Phew!! Thanks for reading all that, you guys are troopers!