Thursday, November 09, 2017

Welcoming Master Collage and Mixed Media Artist Michael Shemchuk To My Studio

Michael Shemchuk: Abstraction By Design: A Mixed Media Workshop

Join me in welcoming collage and mixed media master artist, Michael Shemchuk to teach in my studio Spring 2018.

A Mixed Media Workshop
$350 per student
March 24 - 25, 2018
10am - 4:30pm Saturday and Sunday
1405 16th Street; Racine, WI (easy flight to Milwaukee and half hour drive from the airport, recommendations for accommodations provided upon request)

This workshop focuses on the triptych. Our goal is to create 3- 20”x20” wood panels to work as a synchronized series, as well as individually stand alone artworks. We will be using the Abstraction by Design process in this endeavor. The ABD approach enables the artist to use their painting and collage experience in tandem with their design & layout skills. We put into practice the physicality of painting and collage as well as our sensibilities of design and layout.

We work with paint, paper and clear mediums, as we focus on textures, color selections, surface manipulations, de-constructing and visual balance. 

Michael Shemchuk (shem) is a San Francisco Bay Area artist, who is represented by several fine art galleries in the US and Canada.
Please visit. 

3-20”x20” wood panels. (Bring additional panels to work on ,if you wish)
     A variety of collage papers (colors,graphics,text,handwritten, aged etc).
1- qt. white latex (satin or semi gloss) house paint.
1- qt. black latex(satin or semi gloss) house paint.
1- qt. acrylic satin varnish
1 pint or qt. Primary Color  (acrylic artist or house paint). Students choose this color to be used on their panels
5- mixing containers w/lids ( plastic yogurt, cottage cheese, qt. containers work well.
4-5 2” chip brushes & artist brushes. Pencils, graphite.
1- small squeegee (only if you have on hand). Scissors
Various wide and narrow putty knives.
Scrubber sponge & rags for clean up.

1-sheet 100 grit sandpaper + sanding block.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Patreons and Peers Online Group Ready to Launch!

Patreons and Peers Online Group Ready to Launch!
I popped over here to the blog today to share some news and was surprised to see it has been a year since my last post. Surprised, but not really surprising, considering I intentionally took the year off from traveling to teach so that I could focus on recovering my health after spiraling last year and subsequently being diagnosed with Chronic Lyme disease. 

It has been quite a year, and if you have follow me on Facebook, you know the gist of it all. I could recap, but today I want to share about a new subscription based online group I am launching on October 1st. 

I spent a week this past January with a group of other instructor artists focusing on renewing artistic inspiration and setting personal goals. One of my goals was to start creating online e-course workshop offerings so that I could continue to teach without wearing my physical self down with continuous travel. I did create several videos and short art tutorials with the publisher of my book and have been thrilled with the response I receive, but I missed the personal interaction of being live in the studio classroom. This interaction tends to surpass simple art technique and delves further into the reason we create the things we do. It is a special connection when someone else gets it. 

Suddenly I had that aha moment -create a subscription based, interactive, online group that is more than just teaching a project or technique.

I'm excited to announce that I am ready to launch - "Patreons and Peers"!

I've decided to utilize the platform for artists, Patreon, to manage the subscription tiers and payments. You must register by September 30th, 2017 in order to access the group for the inaugural launch on October 1st. The group will be an ongoing monthly group that you can partake of for as long as you want. Each month will be different. 

Interested? Want to know more? I created this group...

  • For the lover of the arts, and my fellow artists
  • For those who have ever wanted to come and take one of my workshops, but aren't able to travel for any reason- location, time, money, live overseas, or across country. 
  • For those who have ever taken one of my workshops and wish to continue experiencing that deeper level behind the art making, along with the techniques and skills they want to develop.
  • For those who understand that the arts benefit all of society and provide a backdrop by which we are able to form our own thoughts and ideas. 
  • For those who wish to support the arts and have connected to my work or words online or in print, allowing me to continue to share and inspire others. 
  • For those who have ever written with questions on technique after reading or viewing one of my tutorials, who wish they could follow up with even more.
  • For those who want to learn technique, consider themselves lifelong learners, who love to take workshops online, but want the interaction and sense of community in a group setting.
  • For those who have read my blog and my book and seek to develop their own authentic or intuitive voice.
  • For anyone who has watched my journey as an artist, and been filled with the desire to find your own creative path, set your own goals, and find accountability and support while doing so.
  • For those who long to work in a space where you can walk out the virtual door and connect with other artists, gleaning inspiration from just hanging out and chatting with each other.

The group is designed to support and encourage you. I'll be there, but you'll also have each other. There will be group discussions, goal setting, guest interviews and more, here's an overview of the four monthly live casts included in the group each month (which will be archived as videos for members to view over and over):

  •  One livecast/video per month will feature technique or process. I'll cast from my own studio while working on my own art. Very similar to taking an online workshop, but as a member, you'll have the opportunity to ask me questions and review the video over and over again.
  • One livecast/video per month will feature a Q&A session. I'll announce the time and focus of the session in advance so you'll have a chance to post your questions even if you aren't able to catch the session live. 
  • The other two livecast/videos will be done spontaneously each month to share something I find inspiring, an artists date of sorts. I might share an art opening, a trip to a flea market, cast from a workshop setting while I'm teaching on the road, from my studio as I rummage for just the right piece of ephemera to complete a collage, or from my home during one of my head in the clouds moments. 

 Here are the four easy steps to join in the fun: 

 Four Easy Steps and Your In!
  1. Sign up on Patreon here. This step only requires your email address until you are ready to commit to a tier level of sponsorship. 
  2. Find my page on Patreon here and follow me. (click on the "+Follow" button under my profile picture at the top left side). You can follow me for free whether you choose to commit to sponsoring me or not. Seriously, I would love it if you do! When you follow me on Patreon, you'll get my public blog posts emailed to you every time I write a new one there. 
  3. When you are ready, hit the big red "Become a Patreon" button at the top right hand side of my Patreon page, or follow this link. 
  4. Once you've committed to sponsorship at a tier that includes the private online group, friend me on Facebook here so I can add you to the private group. Remember, you must register by September 30th, 2017 to have access to the group in October.
That's it! I am tip-toe dancing, butterflies in my stomach excited to see you there!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Encaustic Techniques in Printmaking

I am really excited to tell you about this very special workshop that I have been developing with fellow artist Samira Gdisis, owner of The Black Eyed Press. Don't miss out on this rare opportunity to explore this unique combination of materials. These seemingly unrelated mediums come together beautifully; Encaustic Wax and Printmaking - texture, fine details, techniques in both processes that will give you a competitive edge in building on your own body of work or ignite something new.  

Hint: this one is worth traveling to. A list of area hotels will be provided upon request. Second Saturday art walk is happening in neighboring Kenosha, Wisconsin. The acclaimed RAM museum is minutes away, and an option for Sunday morning Yoga is available in the Gallery on 16th. I do hope you will join us! 

Encaustic Techniques in Printmaking

Artist Crystal Neubauer teams up with Samira Gdisis of The Black Eyed Press to explore traditional printmaking techniques in relationship to the non-traditional use of encaustic medium. Participants will have a unique opportunity to explore printmaking techniques, including collagraph, relief, and etching, by applying encaustic medium to a Plexiglas plate for use in a professional printmaking studio.

In addition, students will have an opportunity to explore encaustic monoprinting and receive instruction in translating certain techniques to a home studio application when a printing press is not available.

Discussions and demonstrations will include safe studio practices, product selection, the exploration of building plate texture with wax, creating and incising a smooth surface for etching, using objects to create design, registration for single and multiple color passes, rendering abstract and realistic art prints, and suggestions for mounting and displaying the encaustic plates as a work of art unto itself alongside the printed works.

The workshop is designed for those with no experience in either medium, as well as those with a foundation in either encaustic painting or printmaking techniques who wish to further explore this combination.

Workshop includes the majority of supplies, studio time and materials, with only a short supply list required of each student. Students will be asked to bring the following:

  • Plexiglas cut to 6” x 8” - at least (2) pieces with edges to be finished before class per instruction received on registration
  • Arches Cover 92lb. – at least (2) sheets of 22” x 30” white or cream
  • (1) Encaustic quality brush
  • Fitted heat resistant work gloves (Either construction or kitchen variety will work)
  • Lino cutting kit
  • Inspiration photos or illustrations

Options are available at registration for boxed lunch by the acclaimed Chez Bob and Sunday morning Yoga in the Gallery on 16th.

Workshop Fee

*Kind regards and acknowledgment to Strathmore, R&F Paints, and Enkaustikos. 

Friday, September 09, 2016

Today I Will Choose to Rise

After a rare good health day yesterday, I woke with an ocular migraine in the wee hours of the night- intensely painful pressure behind my eyes wrapping throughout my head into the base of my skull, spinning, dizzy, nausea, body aches, the works- a newish symptom I've been experiencing over the past year.
I finally managed to sit up around noon, shades pulled and coffee in hand, feeling like I was run over by a truck. The busy day of work and email catch up I had planned did not happen.
I am feeling anxious about my future and my ability to manage my finances with this debilitating unpredictable illness called Chronic Lyme. I am in a spiraling flare of the disease after a season of environmental trauma and emotional stress.
There is no quick fix take a pill and get better treatment. Only a long regimen of trial and error to address each area of damage to the body. Good days are simply good days. The goal is to find the right combination of treatment and rest to achieve a whole bunch of good days in a row and stop the progressive damage, in other words- remission. Chronic Lyme does not leave.
Unfortunately people sometimes do. Even the ones who really mattered. The ones you have every right to count on. The ones you needed and wanted to be with the most. In some ways, it's easy to understand; life isn't a fairy tale romance. It's down and dirty in the trenches and real. It often requires more from us than we think we have or even want to give.
It's an eye opener when people check out of your life at the very moment you need them to be there the most. The fact is that it is impossible to have the real connected relationships we are looking for if we avoid the bad days that are bound to come.
We need other people in this journey called life. We are wired for connection and wanting a shoulder to lean on when the storms are raging is not a sign of weakness, on the contrary, asking for help and expecting a kind, empathetic response can be evidence of our strength.
But when it comes down to it, there are certain battles in life that we must face on our own. Like a chronic illness, these battles remain hidden from the observer's eye. Not the battle that comes with fighting for better health, or to save a marriage. Or the one that comes with grieving a death, or losing a friend, or a job.
This is the battle that is both uniquely personal and universal. The battle of the ages. The one that wants us to determine our worth based on our circumstances.
The enemy of my soul wants me to believe that I am less than others, as evidenced by the people who leave, or the illness that stays. It trips me into cycles of anxiety produced performance and harsh self-evaluation.
But there is another voice inside, when I am willing to lean in and listen, the one that wants me to be real and learn to love myself without exception. This isn't a frivolous act or selfishly motivated investment, and it doesn't excuse the actions of others. This is a courageous step to discovering what is true.
We are all worthy of love and compassion. Not because of what we can do, but because our value exceeds what is visible on the surface.
It is at this place of falling apart, where everything around me tries to remind me that I have no worth, that I will rise.
I will not hide in shame or fear, I do not speak to play the victim, nor deny my true needs to make myself small enough to be acceptable and earn a scrap of love.
This is my story, my life. It is not all good or all bad. It is not all black and white. There are magical shades of gray and colors that are exclusively mine. There is nothing I can do, or stop doing, and no circumstance or person that will change my worth.
A wise woman tells me that the enemy's voice is the loudest at the most critical points in our story. I can choose to believe the lies and lose myself in the process, or I can choose to rise and embrace my fullest being in spite of all the noise.
Today I choose to love myself to the fullest. Today I will choose to rise.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Kansas City - Not Just Another Workshop

"The Natural Order of Things" 12" x 48" Diptych Collage by Crystal Neubauer
Next Stop: Kansas City - It's Not Just Another Workshop!
Inside/Outside: The Art of Assemblage

Date: Sat, Sept 3, 2016
Time: 9:30-4:30pm
Location: Studio Joy!, 608 E 30th St, Kansas City MO 64109

This workshop is the place to be for the love of all things salvaged and collected. Spend the day creating an encaustic collage on a cradled panel and then elevate it to the status of assemblage by adding your salvaged material and collected objects. Learn the art of encaustic, collage, and assemblage; this day will be a feast of technique resulting in a beautiful work of art for your own collection.  

But the fun does not begin there! 
You are cordially invited to kick the weekend off Friday September 2, with an
excursion in the West Bottoms.

The West Bottoms is a antique/vintage shop hub that opens Fri-Sun on the same weekend as First Friday in the Crossroads. Think of all the cool treasures to be found, and imagine finding the perfect item to use for Saturday's class! 

Date: Fri, Sept 2, 2016
Time: 1-4ish
RSVP: please include a note to Amanda Jolley when you register for the workshop to let us know you are joining us on Friday too.

Next, My First Friday Show Open at Beggars Table Gallery
First Friday at the Crossroads can get pretty congested, so we will have the parking advantage by arriving earlier in the evening for dinner together before the show. After I introduce you to my newest works at Beggars Table Gallery, you will want to wander all over the Crossroads to absorb as much art and inspiration as you are able.

Date: Fri, Sept 2, 2016
Time: 5pm
RSVP: Message to Amanda Jolley at the time of registration letting her know to include you in the dinner reservation.

Click here to register for the workshop and get in on all that fun!