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Acrylics Anonymous, Issue #032 -- Gone Troppo!
November 01, 2014

1st November 2014, issue 032

Passionate about painting with acrylics? Need a monthly fix chock full of inspiration? Need some help to take the pain out of your painting process? It's all here for you. Acrylics Anonymous. Zero elitism. Dive in.

If you enjoy Acrylics Anonymous, and you know someone who might also enjoy it, you can share by forwarding it to your friends!

If you are receiving this because a friend has forwarded this to you, and you would like to subscribe, click here!

Subscribers only…..shhhhhh…sealed section just for you!

Tip of the month


Links we like

Works in progress… us your paintings!

Every month, we will produce a Subscribers Only "sealed section". It could be a painting technique, a short video tip, or anything we can think of that we reckon you might enjoy.

Please let us know what you think, we love your feedback! To leave comments, click here.

What is your process before you start painting?

This handy downloadable checklist will help you get in the right place and space to paint, paint, paint!

Click here to download!

Move With Your Painting

Dance with your painting.

Long, drawn out lines require long flowing movement. When you extend that movement through your whole body, you will stay connected to your painting, and it will show up in your finished piece.

Go Bananas For Tropical Landscapes

Check out our newest page on painting tropical landscapes, including 5 tips to create your own compelling tropical escapes.

Click here for more info...

Workshops - USA!

We are very excited to be in the planning stages of workshops in Colorado and Florida (and possibly areas in between) in the later part of 2015.

If you are keen for a workshop in these areas, please let us know!

Click here to contact us for US workshops!

Mark’s Solomon Island School Project

It's not really painting related (yet!), however, have a look at what our top bloke Mark is up to in the Sols next month.

Click here to read Mark’s Kagata Village Blog.

Will Kemp’s art school. Anyone who says “in an ideal world we’d all start the day with a chocolate gellato” is all right in my book!

Have a look at Will’s practical & simplified acrylic painting (and other!) approach.

Will’s profile pic is enough to win you over!

Our very own studio/gallery, Lennox Arts Collective, is holding its first exhibition - opening night 5th December. Nothing over $300, with works from Mark, myself and a host of other talented arty peeps.

Save the date! Click here for the invite.

If you have a link you like, please share it with us! You can contact us to let us know. Thank you!

This is the section where you can "get your name in lights!" (well at least out there in the internet world!).

If you have works in progress you would love to show off, or finished pieces you are particularly proud of, we would love to see them!

We especially like to hear about the story behind the creation.

This month’s submission comes from avid painter Suz from Manitoba, Canada.  She has previously sent me some work with her amazing story about coming back to her painting roots after almost 50 years.

This is quite a read, so go and grab a cuppa and sit back down with it when you’ve got a solid 15 minutes up your sleeve!

This is Suz’s journey, not only with her piece “Breaking Through”, but also with her lifelong relationship with painting.  Thank you so much Suz for sharing your story with us.

From Suz:

"My early painting days began with my artist mother and brother.   Every Saturday we three sat around the kitchen table and painted for the whole day.

I moved away from that as a teenager, much to the disappointment of my parents, who thought I should continue on painting.  My brother’s paintings were stunning.  He went on and eventually graduated Emily Carr in Vancouver and even his professors were blown away by his paintings.  I felt my own paintings were inferior, and thought “why bother?”, when overshadowed by such immense talent.

I tried to revisit painting in my early 40’s but it was short lived.  Again I was not impressed by what I was producing, and turned to writing.

In my fifties, I again tackled creativity through fashion design and studied at University of Manitoba.  I had designed and made clothes my whole life, but had never studied formally.  I spent the next years writing and designing part time while working full time in an office.

In 2012 I became suddenly disabled and was forced to live a very sedentary life.  I had some recovery after a year, but was left with considerable challenges.

I had befriended my realtor Melody, who sold me my cottage in 2011, and her mother in law Nancy was a well known artist, and she wanted the three of us to paint together now that I had time on my hands.

Melody fell ill around the same time as me, and unfortunately passed away after a very short battle with cancer.  The three of us never managed to get together to spend that day painting.  This regret never left my mind.

A year later, Nancy invited me to a Saturday art workshop, in honour of her daughter-in-law's wish that I paint with her.

We painted together that day and talked about Melody all day, and through that day we got to know each other, and a friendship began to blossom.

I painted my first painting that day, Flutter of Leaves.  The tutor was very surprised that I would come in, pick up a brush, and take on such a large canvas (she had offered me a very small canvas which I declined and chose large) after, oh, about 50 years!   She told me that the painting was good and I should keep on painting.

So I did.  And here is the story of “Breaking Through”.

Did you ever run through a sprinkler on a hot summer night as a kid ? Did you do it for fun or to cool off in the heat ?????? I sure did, no air conditioning in those days, and in the evening my parents used to water the lawn to keep it going . . . . . our summers can get very, very hot !

My inspiration for this painting was those childhood memories . . . jumping through a sprinkler trying to cool off, but at the same time it was pure exhilaration - at that point where you break through that wall, it's hitting you so hard, you can't see, and the relief of making it through . . . only to go back and take another run at it!

Childhood memories juxtaposed with adult challenges . . . how to capture? This painting was my answer. 

I painted this painting in Liquitex Heavy Body Acrylics. These paints were wonderful to work with, fast drying yet so sculptural . . . this was my first time trying to use a heavy bodied paint and sure won't be my last . . . . . this was the heaviest underpainting I'd ever done.

I also used Burnt Sienna to 'sketch' in my figure instead of sketching out my idea of the painting. This is a wonderful way to sketch in your ideas and inspiration, so much easier to bring it in to the painting later . . . . . and much more pronounced than an early pencil sketch. Trying different approaches, learning different techniques, isn't this what it's all about ?

With this piece I painted a very heavy textured under painting, I loved the underpainting although I didn't know where to take it. 

After a week of looking at it a lot, I felt an internal punch towards the painting. I decided I would just punch it out and took a very abstract bold approach to the sprinkler, the water. .

. . . in the end, I was intrigued by the outcome.

 After completion, the figure jumping through the sprinkler became of more interest to me, and I wondered if I should have centered more on her than the sprinkler, but I really wanted the sprinkler to be the wall, the challenge, and capture the joy of breaking through, even though you're small, and the world seems such a big challenge!

I hope to be able to continue painting into my future, and I’m embarking on a learning adventure, color theory and learning techniques to paint better and better paintings!

I like this site, it is wonderful to look through all the paintings submitted, makes you realize how many artists there are and all the beautiful art they are making.  And maybe all of us are artists, we just have to ‘let it out’.

For years I didn’t paint because I thought only Master Artists should paint, I look at their paintings and marvel at their talent and it’s intimidating . . . . that’s the one thing that makes it hardest for me to paint, I want to paint at a Master level, so my biggest challenge is to let that go, and just paint for me . . . . . .

  To sum up, the gift of painting again and the gift of a blossoming new friendship with my wonderful artist teacher has brought hope and positivity into a time of my life that was very bleak, very grey and very gloomy . . . . how better to deal with that, than add splashes of color, happiness and movement to as many canvasses as I can."

Thanks again Suz.  What a wonderfully inspirational story!

Hope you enjoyed this issue of Acrylics Anonymous! If you have any suggestions, comments or feedback for the ezine or our site, please don't hesitate to contact us.

Until next time, make sure you chuck some paint around!

Cheers from Frankie & Mark :)

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