After more than a year of trials and tribulations, I have relocated my studio, Kathleen Thoma Art, to Orange County, CA. I am very excited about the Irvine Fine Arts Center. They have a printmaking open studio available for artists to use. Last Wednesday, I decided to try it out and I was able to create a few images that I thought were worth my time.
One of my new works, “New Journeys”, 11 x 14, monotype
After a number of intense play/work hours, I ended up with a few things to show.
What a background! I am gathering inspiration at the beach, really.
I enjoyed meeting the wonderful people at the center and will certainly come again.
Come again to see my work inspired by the amazing beauty and color of southern California!
Orange!Peach! I love shades of orange! Why do I love orange today? All I know is that right now, while working on this particular image; orange rules! Why?
Orange makes me feel warm, happy, exuberant, communicative, sharing, open and relaxed. But why?The psychology of color is what I’m writing about here.
When I was a kid, mixing bright watercolors on my brush and making a big giant mess on my paper was my greatest joy. When I was angry, I would use a pen, and make messy, dense black lines. At that time, the only thing I knew, was that using colors made me feel happier or at least give me a sense of control over my own mood. I knew nothing about the psychology of color. It was just a wonderful thing in my life, for some it’s music, building things or knitting; for me it was color. (more…)
It is fascinating to play with color while exploring new possibilities. There seems to be no end to the different combinations that are available to us. I particularly enjoy using complementary colors next to each other, which creates drama and excitement by bringing out what is the most vivid in each color. I am always looking for the “edge” between chaos and harmony with my colors. I am pushing the limits of color combinations; yet still creating what to me, at least, seems beautiful or wonderful.
Succulent Savage Kathleen Thoma monotype 11 x 14
I see these color combinations everywhere in life. One recent example is some flowers I saw a few weeks ago. I noticed the outrageous fuchsia and lime green next to each other, making their brilliance seem even more flamboyant. Right away, I took a photo to remind me of the colors to use on my next print. What works in nature doesn’t always work the plate, but the challenge is motivating. (more…)
I am always finding abstract patterns in nature, I often use color for the starting point. Wing studies of birds, butterflies and other insects have a mysterious way of ending up in my sketchbook.
Study of wing pattern & color
I used the abstract patterns and colors from the wing study. Taken out of their original context, the image doesn’t make you think of butterflies at all. I’ve used the same colors as starting points in a number of variations, using the repetitions to create new patterns. Here is the finished monotype, which I’ve titled “Sea Flight”.
It seemed that a rainbow had exploded on the streets of New York city during the 2012 festival of Holi Hai. My family and I happened to be in New York City that day, and became curious about this ancient spring festival we saw advertised. Once we found it, we were glad. I feel it would be very difficult to remain in a bad mood for long in the midst of such a joyful music, dancing and singing.
The slinging of colored powders between the laughing crowds of people was so childish, and that is what also made it seem so creative to me. I saw it as a constantly moving painting with each person’s face becoming a small multi-colored canvas of colored powders, changing shape with each dancer’s movement. (more…)
the process of creating a monotype using hand-cut stencils.
First I start with my palette of colors. Choosing color depends on my mood or the idea I have in my head. Then I cut out my stencils using flexible, soft sheets of plastic, like cut-up plastic file folders.
I use a piece of plexiglass or glass for my plate. I apply thin layers of ink or paint onto the plate, playing with layers of stencils until I have what seems to be a good starting layer to put through the press. This decision is often a guess based on experience. What is fun about monotype printing is that you never have complete control over the final outcome. This can also be frustrating of course. Sometimes you don’t like the print, so you have to wipe it off and start over. (more…)