Saturday, May 29, 2010

Artistic Polar Bear Challenge: 100 Ways in 100 Days. #13 - Ink on Illustration Board primed with Fiber Paste

Some people can spend all day shopping, browsing for shoes, or the latest fashions, or hunting for bargains.  I definitely didn't inherit the shopper gene.  Normally where any type of shopping is involved, my usual behavior pattern consists of:
  1. I figure out I need Something.
  2. I figure out where to find the Something.
  3. I go to wherever the Something is sold.
  4. I buy the Something.
  5. I go home with the Something.
There are three exceptions to this pattern:
  1. Bookstores
  2. Home improvement stores
  3. Art supply stores
I become lost in the world of each of these places.  Bookstores because I'm an avowed readaholic.  Home stores, well, because some part of my Right Brain treats each home improvement as a giant art project.   The art supply store reasons are self-explanatory.

When I make a pilgrimage to the local art store, I find myself wandering the aisles (deftly avoiding the gazes of the store clerks, lest they see me drooling on the merchandise) and pondering the artistic possibilities of the wealth of riches I see before me.  One such pondering moment led to the purchase of a jar of Golden's Fiber Paste, which is basically an acrylic gel filled with synthetic fibers.  I had no idea what I was going to use it for, but I would be assured it would be in my studio when the inevitable bolt of inspiration struck.

Well, the hoped-for bolt hasn't hit yet, but this seemed to be the perfect time to pull the jar out and at least experiment a little. I plopped a few blobs down on a piece of illustration board, and spread them out with a brush.

A palette knife can be used to smooth out the paste, but I liked the idea of leaving the surface more textured.   I grabbed the ink, and off I went.

Ink Bear on Illustration Board coated with Fiber Paste

It was like painting on rough, handmade paper.  The paste turned out to be nicely absorbent.  I debated going over it again and defining the darks on the bear some more, but rather liked the "ghostly" appearance a single pass created.  Thankfully, there was no need for swearing or primal screaming when working on this one.


RHCarpenter said...

I'm the same way with shopping for anything other than books and art supplies :) How fortunate to find this, buy it, and then use it for your bear series in such a great way. I'm sure the fiber paste will turn up again :)

debwardart said...

Verrrrrrry interesssssssting! Did you begin painting while the paste was still damp, or did you let it dry first? (Inquiring minds want to know!)

Terri Buchholz said...

I'm exactly the same way about book, hardware, and art supply stores!! Don't get me wrong, I can shop other store and buy all kinds of crap, but those 3 places have a special allure. Why I love hardware stores is a mystery but I think it has something to do with smells and potential. But books and art supply stores? - I'm a total junkie for them. And I could spend hours at Dick Blick and Borders any day.
Aren't you excited you found a reason to try the paste?

Lisa Walsh said...

Deb - I let the paste dry first. It has a rather sticky consistency when it's wet. It would be an interesting experiment to add color to it when it is wet and see what happens.

Rhonda - I like this fiber paste stuff. There's some definite potential.

Terri - dontcha just love OLD hardware stores in particular?? The ones that have been around for ages, smell like oil and old wood, and have all sorts of funky items you would never find anywhere else. I'd take a place like that over a Nortstrom's any day.