I agree with this comment wholeheartedly. I am constantly taking classes and testing new art supplies. I recently acquired an Ipad Pro with Ipencil. I’ve just begun to tap into its strength. The program everyone recommends for artists is Procreate. So I downloaded it. Wow! It is seriously robust and fairly self explanatory if your are like me and just open everything and try it out and then when you get stuck, Google how to do it. I mean folks, there is a video out there to teach you how to do anything. I recently learned how to use the playback feature which allowed me to record how I draw and make an image, step by step, I used it to make the above video.
I love painting. There is little more that is satisfying than to watch gouache paint be soaked up by good watercolor paper. It’s meditative. But, once you commit a color, that’s it. You can’t quickly change it. I’ve been trying out the new Liquitex acrylic gouache in combo with traditional gouaches. I like how it smoothly glides across the paper. This paint is pigment saturated, so it tends to cover up “mistakes.” But on an Ipad, click tap click, and voila, the color is changed. Magic. The Liquitex is making it easier to get the consistent fine lines I lust for.
All but the fine lines were done with traditional gouache. I am able to create related color palettes of traditional gouache that allow me to mix and blend to my hearts content and not waist any paint as it can be reconstituted with water which is a bonus to me. A negative is that if you apply the paint too thickly it cracks an if too thinly the lines don’t stay consistent. Acrylic gouache solves that issue and the Liquitex is super smooth. I need to get some old fashioned baby jars so I can mix my paint and keep it from drying out. The Acrylic gouache dries with a flat finish like traditional gouache and can’t be reconstituted with water ( a plus and negative depending on how you view it).
So where am I heading with all this experimentation? A few weeks ago I entered into physical therapy. Decades of intense knitting has taken its toll. Knitting a 32 pound sweater for a 5 foot fiberglass globe is probably what did me in. I am banned from Knitting for now and am trying to find new ways to create that don’t cause pain. I am painting more as it is allowing me to flush out ideas quickly. Painting doesn’t seem to cause my hands to go numb which is another bonus.
I developed a routine last month of journaling each morning with my breakfast followed by my Tai Chi practice and an hour of painting. What finally flushed out was a need to express my lived experience of my stroke. Strokes are the single greatest cause of disabilities in adults. Though I am very fortunate, I still struggle. You just can’t see those struggles, so I am exploring that. I don’t walk with a limp or have slurred speech. But I can’t sit in a restaurant and tune out background noise while listening to a friend. This essentially translates for me to a serious loss of income as I no longer teach art to children.
When I went in for my two year MRI follow up. I learned that where the stroke hit, there was just what looked like a black hole. The dead tissue had been cleaned out my body and the space is filled with cerebral fluid. The notion that there was a hole there totally freaked me out until I realized it was a black hole and black holes in outer space are freaking awesome! I like to think that I have this super power for sucking away negative internal thoughts. So how exactly do I think. Do the neurons zoom around the black hole like rush hour traffic at a round about or do they somehow build skinny little bridges across? I don’t know, so I keep reading and painting.