Stone Coal Studio

Stone Coal Studio

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

7 Steps to Create a New Art Display

Moonlight Bouquet
by Judith F Lochbrunner
18 inches by 18 inches

Many steps or tasks are completed before an art display goes up in a gallery or storefront.  

1. The art must be created.  Future blogs will discuss the how-tos of this subject in detail.

2.  The art must be completed.  There is an old adage that it takes two people to create an artwork.  The first person does the creating while the second person tells the artist when to stop.   I tend to stop working on a painting when it is 85% (or so) complete and then let it hang in the studio for a few days or weeks or until I think of a way to finish it.

In the photo above I have taken over the sunroom to allow the varnish to dry on several paintings. 

3.  The art must be protected.  This is the best time to photograph the painting for my records and for promotion.  A protective coating or vanish is then applied.  Depending on the media, I use a variety of acrylic varnishes.  

4.  The art must be readied for display.  The work will be framed or the edges will be painted to "finish" if it is a gallery wrap canvas.  Wire for hanging, backing to protect the back of the work from dust and a label are all added.  The label also serves as my certificate of authenticity as it always has my signature.

No sleeping allowed in the guest bed when it becomes a staging place 
while I complete the inventory for an art display

5.  The art must be inventoried.  I use a spread sheet on my computer to keep track of all artwork.  The spreadsheet contains the title, size, media, price, gallery, date sold, commission paid, final sales price, sales tax information and shipping costs.  

6.  The art must be delivered.  The art is packed for safe transport in boxes and then delivered with a written inventory for the gallery or shop.  This allows the staff member to use it as a checklist to confirm the number of pieces as well as titles, sizes, media, and prices.

7.  The art is finally displayed.  Depending on the location this is sometimes completed by the artist.  In those locations I come prepared with labels, tools, hangers, nails, ladder or whatever will be helpful.

Here is my completed art display hung at 2nd Helpings Gallery in Roanoke today for everyone to enjoy and perhaps add to your wish list.

This year do your holiday shopping as well as entertain your out-of-town friends and family at 2nd Helpings.   Original art, crafts, jewelry and more plus a high-end thrift store with  sandwiches and treats at the cafe are all in one place. 

2nd Helpings at 1502 Williamson Rd in Roanoke 
is located 2 blocks north of the Roanoke Civic Center off of 460 E from I-581.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

New Art Technique for Works on Plaster

My last post on September 30, 2014 showcased two new works including the first of the "September at Snow Canyon" series.  The first three works of the series are now on display at Goose Creek Studio.

September at Snow Canyon
Mixed Media on Board
12 x 12 inches
by Judith F Lochbrunner

Today I will try to explain the process of creating a plaster-on-burlap surface in photos and a few short paragraphs.

I have tried to document the steps in a new (to me) technique using plaster on burlap.  This is by no means intended to be a complete discussion as sometimes I got so involved that I forget to stop and take a photo.  My hope is that it is enough to allow you to get a better idea of the process.

Step one is to gesso the wooden boxes.  I use at least three coats and then sanded them down. A strong support like wood is required for this technique.

Step two is first cutting the burlap to the size of your surface.  Any excess can be trimmed later.  No photos were taken of mixing the plaster and then pushing it into the burlap with a stiff spatula as it was so messy.  Notice that I am working on a couple plastic bags outside.   Allow the plaster to dry completely or when it no longer feels cool to the touch.   Roll up the plaster-covered burlap to create more cracks to add even more texture.  Finally, allow any extra plaster to dry and dispose in the trash.

Step three is gluing the plaster covered burlap onto the support.  I used PVA glue.  Cover the back of the burlap with glue and press firmly to attach.  Move it inside or under cover.  Then turn it upside down and place a heavy weight on it.   Leave the weight in place for at least 24-36 hours.

Step four requires a move back outside as the plaster covered burlap is very dusty.  A base color is applied with acrylic paint.  I watered the paint down to get it to completely cover and sink into the gaps.  Allow to completely dry.

Step five is a the very messy job of sanding.  Use a dust mask if necessary and sand the surface.  A good sanding by hand removes the excess plaster and dust to prepare it for the studio.

In the studio I applied preliminary layers of paint. The paint soaks into the plaster.  When the basic design is set, a layer of acrylic gel is brushed on to seal the surface.  This allows the final details to be added to complete the work.

I continue to work on this series.  Three more works are now on the work table in the studio.  

And I have the "assistance" of the kitties as I explore this new art technique.

Many thanks to Stephanie Lee and Judy Wise, authors of Plaster Studio  and to Vera Dickerson's class  at The Studio School  for guidance on how to proceed with this technique.