Tag Archives: Winter Tree Series

Winter Tree Series- Three Completed

Following last week’s setbacks, it was hard to tell how close these paintings were to completion.  A few  more steps on each, and I called them done.
Winter Tree Series- Orange SkyWinter Tree Series- Grey EveningWinter Tree Series- Yellow Sky


I’m linking up to Nina Marie Sayer’s Off the Wall Friday here.  I am ready to check it out for my weekly inspiration!

Stencils… And More Stencils….

Spraying over the StencilAfter the steamer disaster, I had to rework details on my three Winter Tree Series.  Back came the Magic Sizing- and I drew in details in faded and blurred areas.  Then steamed again…

Next, back came the stencils!  At this point, they were pretty soggy, but I did my best.    Also, I tried to keep pace with two other paintings, also at the stencil stage- so I did a lot of paper cutting.   For one area, I wanted a soft misty effect.  I tried to use cotton balls, pulled apart until wispy, to mask an area.  And- it worked!  Stencils- Used again...Stencils for River RocksDrying StencilsCotton as a stencil


Wordless Wednedsay

Moss and Bark

Winter Tree Series- Can salt resolve a problem?

I’ve identified a  problem with my Winter Tree series. I need to keep the backgrounds simple, but I don’t like them as flat as they are.  So, let me try to add texture, while keeping it simple.  Now, I am remembering a resist technique done with salt on silk… If I can reproduce it, that might do the trick.  Here’s one of the paintings, with a too flat background. Silk Dye over Drawing

So the technique I remember involves dipping the silk into a bath of water and LOTS of salt.  Next dry it, press it, and use a mist of dye to saturate the fabric.  The effect of the salt crystals is that it resists the dye, keeps it from flowing, and preserves tiny white or un-dyed spots wherever the salt crystals are, giving a pointillist effect.

The salt to water ratio I used was roughly 8 cups of water to 3/4 lbs of plain table salt.  I boiled the water on the stovetop, dissolved the salt as much as possible, and removed the pan from the heat.   I dropped in three of my winter tree painting series (they are small paintings).  I let the salt water infuse the silk for 20 minutes or so, and then removed the paintings to the sink and let them cool.  Oh!  I burned myself at this stage! They were so hot!  Next time I’ll make sure to use a wooden spoon to remove them…Drawing Stencil at the Window

Don’t rinse them!  When they are cool, gently squeeze out the excess and hang the silk to dry.  The next day they were dry- and I could see the salt crystals evenly distributed, encrusting the silk.  I pressed the silk with a warm iron, to get a nice drawing surface.  Ready to make a stencil

I taped the paintings to the window- so I could trace a stencil using recycled paper.  I traced the trees, then cut the stencils for each of the three paintings.

After cutting the stencil, I stretched the painting back on the frame, and placed the stencil on top.  Then I sprayed the painting with dye in a mist bottle,  to get some background color.  Cut Paper Stencil

Finally I ended up with a softer background for each of the paintings.   Now I will need to steam set it, and only then rinse out the salt.  A vinegar rinse  after that should make them soft and luminous again.  I’m not quite at that stage- the last painting is still drying on the frame…

After Spray Dyeing using Stencil


Wordless Wednesday

Winter Tree Series


Wordless Wednesday

Winter Trees at Dusk

Winter Tree Series Begun

Drawings in my sketchbook spurred me to a new series in process now.   Working on silk coated with Magic Sizing, and using a brush with very little dye, I can work with a linear quality I usually find in my pencil drawings.  Drawing on Silk

After steam setting this drawing, I can rinse out the Magic Sizing and start on the next layer.  I’ll be adding some color, so I will need to preserve the tree outlines with my water resistant gutta.  Gutta outlines on my grawing

After the gutta dries, I can add color.  Silk Dye over Drawing

After adding my silk dye, I tried to add a bit of texture with some salt, with little result on this painting.  My next stage will be some shadowing on the trees.  This painting is looking a bit underfinished to me, but I do like the direction it is heading.