Alto Relief – Moonlight Sonata

Here is my recent work & my attempt at Alto Relief – Sonata 30″ x 20″ sculpted with a porcelain clay – still in progress. Current photos and more updates to come. I will be cold cast bronzing this piece so will show the process for cold cast bronzing. Most people do not realize that Alto Relief is a rare form of sculpture and one of the most difficult art forms to master and to my knowledge it is not taught in any of the fine art schools. Low relief is also more difficult followed by 3d , painting and drawing as you do not have to alter the axis for any of the elements. I believe Low relief is taught in the last year of most fine art schools after students have learned painting, drawing, and 3d. I advise every artist I know to work in all of the art forms from low relief – high relief – painting – drawing and 3d. Each builds on the strengths of the others. It is a synergistic relationship. Artists that work in all the mediums in the past became great and I believe it is because they did all of the art forms rather than just focusing in one area – Take Michealangelo for example he sculpted and painted throughout his life and I am thoroughly convinced that this was the key to his success. So I plod on ….. My Alto Relief…

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Recent Art Activity

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Here are some pictures of recent work:

  1. An acrylic painting ‘Carried Away’ 11″ x 14″ on board
    ‘Carried Away’ Remember the day we laughed in our embrace? We lived with every moment and loved with our whole hearts. We sang from our souls , we played everyday
    You carried me away…
  2. A 3d figurative sculpture with relief titled ‘king of arts’ – a story of a boy puppeteer ‘the king’  a painter and poet(writer) the queen -a dancer and a joker- musician. A handbuilt sculpture incorporating all the arts: performance (music and dance), literary, visual.
  3. Vase – 22″ handbuilt with figurative relief sculpture in porcelain
  4. Vase-20″ handbuilt with figurative releif  for the Havanese Fanciers of Canada dog show held end of oct 2010 

My poem ‘Flora’s Daughter’ written for a painting of my daughter Bethany for the Art in Bloom exhibition at the Victoria Art Gallery and Museum has been selected as a finalist in the poetry competition held by the Poetry Institute of Canada. The poem will be published in a book titled ‘Island Mists’ an anthology of verse (National Library of Canada, Ottawa ISBN 978-1-926774-02-2).

My artwork has also been selected by the jury of the Sidney Fine Art show to be exhibited with the other amazing artists in BC October 15 – 17th at the Mary Winspear Center.

I work in painting, sculpture and drawing and I firmly believe artists should be versatile in a variety of artforms. 3d and 2d are synergistic in the training of an artist and both mediums are important to our growth and progress as an artist. Currently I am working on sculptured vases, a sketchbook project (handbound with acrylic painted hardcover), a figurative oil painting and a china painted handsculpted teapot with cups and saucers. pics to follow once I get some new batteries for my camera.

Here is a site I just found
My next challenge will be to submit to either Oil painters of America, ARC and/or  greenhouse gallery Salon International this year.
ARC prospectus – deadline dec20. 2010
Greenhouse gallery Salon International deadline jan21 2011

My most recent poem:     
The Wisest Words
The wisest words that were ever told
are not from cry or plea
shouted above the crowd
nor spoke on bended knee
The loudest or the softest breath
will not its matter make
In the still of silence is where the wisest words take place
Tis not heard at all
For in the quiet of our thoughts
God’s understanding falls
listen to hear his call

Stain glass window project

I was just recently commissioned to complete a realistic looking owl for a stain glass window. This project is a collaborative effort between designer Marjorie Brice, stain glass window artist Cavan Butler and myself. I visited the window today and it is absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately my camera battery was being charged so no pictures of the window yet. I WILL post pictures of the window as soon as I can. Here is a few pictures of my owls. I have completed some Owl ‘rough drafts’ as tests and to see how it would look (see picture below ) Now to complete the actual piece (size 4 3/4″ x 2 1/3″). Here is a quick drawing of  an owl reverse painted with encaustic on glass & they said it couldn’t be done. DSC00630DSC00633

Art sites

A comprehensive list of internet sites for Artist competitions, calls for entry, marketing and juried exhibitions :
This is for the artist that likes to apply themselves in as many directions as possible all at once.
I spent hours on the computer over a month collecting these sites on my favourites hopefully they will be helpful to all my artist friends out there. If you find something of value let me know or if you are not happy with one of the sites listed here for some reason let US all know so that we can help each other.
Current information:

Book cover:  Art will be accepted through December 31, 2010

Here is a site with lots of excellent opportunities for artist residencies (with some paid stipends) and international opportunities – worth checking out and probably one of the best sites on the internet for artist opportunities.
scroll through the pages for many different types of opportunities:
For artists focusing on feminist approach and women

drawing competition:
Canadian Institute of portrait artists:  
Artist competitions and designers —
Anyone want to design a puzzle go here:
or for prints and publishing artist submissions you can check this out:
Great idea and want to be published?
Have a need to exhibit in a craft market?
For next year you can also check out one of a kind show and sale for toronto vancouver new york etc.
ART Competitions: drawing competition deadline dec31 2009
or their other competitions here
Want to be on a stamp?
A free artist opportunities site:
  artist /sculptors
Design a small teapot
Live in New York?
Portfolio space:
ARTbook :
invitation to design invitations?
Interested in tile?
Deadline for submission dec 8th (tile)
Call for artists:
Ok here is where ART and SCIENCE collaborate apparently:

Zelli Porcelain:
A national ceramic competition:
ART Fair/ shows:
Too late for this year (held in late oct) but really early for next year!! 😉
Gallery submissions
Charles cummings gallery :
For How to information for artists or anyone check out:
Would like to get into the movie industry go here:
A construction material that artists are using as a substrate for watercolor, acrylic and oil  etc :
Artist Projects to get involved with:
For Encaustic artists:
international encaustic artists – this site is not user friendly you need patience.
Competitions cont’d  added extra bonus wine label competition !!

Greenhouse gallery portfolio submission:
Greenhouse gallery 2010 prospectus for competition submissions for traditional representational artists:
Salon international 2010
Emerging Artist auction NYC

Wine labels usually held annually

If anyone has some more sites of interest do not hesitate to add them to this post. I am currently interested in wine label competitions.

Encaustic painting


Purchased @ the local thrift store

For the past couple of days I have been painting with encaustic as a medium. I was asked to do an owl in realism on a piece of glass for a stain glass window for the designer and good friend Marjorie Brice.  I approached her with the idea of creating it in encaustic as it has the look of a stain glass window when painted. To my surprise She was totally up for the experiment so I will be documenting my project here. It has been a worthwhile journey of research for the past month. Finally I decided it was time to actually attempt the medium. What happened over the past week was quite thrilling for me – I get excited over paint  -its a weird obsession. What gets me about encaustic is the fact that if I can master this ancient artform I can incorporate all my artforms into one medium. I can sculpt, paint and draw realistically with encaustic. It can be as colorful or as plain as you want it to be. You can texture it add relief, sculpt, collage anything into it, make it 3d, 2d abstract or realistic figurative . In my mind encaustic is more versatile than any other medium. You can paint on glass, wood, just about anything. I wouldn’t paint on canvas though as it needs a hard substrate as canvas is too flexible for this medium. Some artists do use canvas though so you may not necessarily need to rule it out if it is solution to a certain project. After I completed my YOUTUBE research on encaustics I happened to be looking in the local newspaper which I never read and I never read the free section either but by obvious direction from the universe my eyes glanced at the paper and I saw an ad for free tempered glass shelving. I immediately called because I was thinking glass would possibly be a beautiful substrate for my encaustic experiments. I always go from most difficult to easy – go all or go home. Anyway funny thing the guy who called first ‘ first come first serve’ never showed up and I went and picked up a small pickup truck filled with glass. I couldnt believe it ! here was enough glass canvas to last a year AND it was free ahh the universe is amazing *note my husband wasnt as excited about it as I was. Artists are amazing at recycling. The owner of the glass said it must of been meant for me as he had a lot of interest but noone actually showed up. After that I decided it was time to go thrift store shopping for my encaustic supplies. I picked up an iron (flat metal with no holes and small) and a pancake griddle to heat the wax paint cakes. next I needed to actually make the paint. I heated my wax in an old crock pot and added the damar resin crystals a ratio of 8parts wax to approx 1 part resin. (for the glass painting I will be adding more resin).

Resin crystals and metal tins

Resin crystals and metal tins

Next time I will be heating my wax in a pan on the pancake griddle as I had trouble getting the damar resin to melt – it melts at 200 degrees and the wax at 150 -I think I need to complete some more research . There is no temperature gage on the crock pot so it was not working too well– live and learn. Once the mixture is heated together pour into muffin containers and add oil paint or schmeincke pastels (excellent pigment for encaustics I am told) or pigment powders. I added some oil paint **tip: leave over night on a papertowel to remove some of the oil and  ‘voila’ paint.

I used a cheese cutter worked great

I used a cheese cutter for the wax -worked great

I had some porcelain relief tiles that were fired and unpainted downstairs that would work great for my first encaustic project. You can paint on unpainted ceramic- go figure?  I invited my artist friend Sandy Terry over to help me christin my new thrift store buys and she painted on a wooden panel while I worked on my relief tiles and a small paperclay cameo. I was really frustrated but Sandy absolutely loved it. Working a textured free form medium over a hard surface with relief was more than I had bargained for. But in the end I think me and the encaustic came to a mutual agreement. for my first attempt I am happy and excited about the challenge this medium will bring into my art.