Friday, October 09, 2009

Secret sketches

Where have I been? Is that the secret? No No - I've been invited to participate in a print exchange of 7 printmakers from the UK and 7 from the US... It's always nice when someone else sets down a deadline carved in stone - a sure thing to get many moving, right? The theme is secrets...

As usual you'll find many lists and ideas jotted down in my sketchbook as I'm trying to work out my theme. I also draw - and redraw - and redraw topics and imagery that makes the bells in my head go off. Much of it is familiar imagery I've been drawn to before but with new meaning and a new story... The print is about half way completed. Right now I think the title will be secret seeds... I'm not totally resolved on that - but usually the words circle my head as I'm carving the board - this one was no exception. But hey - it's not finished yet, so I still have time to discover more.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Open Studio this Sunday!

Open Studio this Sunday from 11 to 3. Please contact me if you need directions. This year I'll be featuring prints, paintings and books primarily produced in the last year. You'll find that my work has taken a few twists and turns since my last open studio. New materials, new marks, new approaches, and new work. Some pieces are as large as my fireplace while other are as small as my cereal bowl. Hope you can make it!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

roll baby roll!

Rolling Rolling rolling - we finished up with the steamroller as promised. Master printmaker Steve Prince led us through the all stages of rolling out the six foot print.

He cut up the board into several pieces and we were each handed two pieces of the puzzle. Then it was time to make your way with the materials. For me it was a bit of sketching in my sketchbook then onto carving and the dremel. That dremel certainly picks up the pace...

Steve was kind enough to ink up all of our plates. He says it's all about sight and sound. And he would know - have you seen his work? Well go back to that link and check it out. It took about 45 minutes to ink the entire image, then it was time to load it up and move it out. He cranked up the steamroller and off he went. In the image Steve and I are holding up the print. We were unfortunately short a few pieces that didn't make it back in time for the main event. Steve was quick to point out that - that's life. We work with what we were are given and rarely do we get to choose the outcome. So True... Make the best of what you have. In the end we were all pleased with the outcome.

More videos posted on you tube. Search Steve Prince - steamroller.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Over six feet pure printing love

Whhhhhoooooweeee! It's all hands on deck with master printmaker Steve Prince for the weekend. And here's what I made today! This guy is awesome - not only is he talented, approachable, experienced, encouraging and over six feet tall but he has a fantastic personality to top it off. We spent today singing dancing and testing out new approaches with woodcut prints. (I'm not sure if he's getting ready to print or bust a move here) Even after printing for over a decade I find he has inventive and refreshing suggestions - and encourages the use of the dremel. Perfect! Finally - a tool I already have and know how to use...

Tomorrow we break out the steamroller for a collaborative six foot print. If you're in Arlington stop by, it's open to the community and free. Stay tuned...

Friday, September 12, 2008

Book show at the Lee Arts Center

videoI'm getting the final touches together for my class and solo show at the Lee Arts Center, opening October 2, 2008. There will be at least twelve books included in the exhibit called Captured. Check out the work in progress!

I'll be hosting a short artist talk October 18th at 3:45. This will give those interested a chance to see the insides of the books and examine the bindings and techniques more closely. Otherwise, while the show is up - please keep you hands to yourself! Any interest in that? Please shoot me an email at melissa@mphackmann.com to RSVP.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

just like joe

When you come by for a studio visit my working space is tidy and organized. But honestly the rest of the time it's more like work in progress. A lot of work in progress. Paint stuff here, book stuff there, paper everywhere. I've been on a book making frenzy getting ready to teach at Portland's Art and Soul conference and for my solo show at the Lee Arts Center.

Just like Joseph Cornell - I find it necessary to go through my inventory periodically. A reminder as to what I have. Who could keep track of all this paper? I spent a rainy afternoon reviewing what I have to work with. This time spent organizing (that I usually consider a complete waste of time) was quite relaxing. Like a basic color exercise. I arranged it by color and found a few gems I'd forgotten about. There're sure to be used, now that I know where they are.

Friday, August 15, 2008

He loved rocko rain or shine

Here's the other diptych I just sent off to the show at UVA. I know... I know... this is a lot of black for a gal like me. I'm trying to stretch myself. And I love the black, it reminds me of my linocut prints.

He loved rocko rain or shine Each panel is 12” x 24” x 2”. Mixed media acrylic – including: canvas, book collage, graphite, crayon and oil pastel on wood panel. Price $800 for both. They will be hanging at the show starting September 5th. Please contact me at melissa@mphackmann.com if you are interested and I will put you in touch with the curator.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

how she taught her garden to sing

how she taught her garden to sing is one of my newest pieces. Inspired by a a view of my mom's amazing garden and a deadline.

I was invited to participate in a group show next month at the University of Virginia. The criteria was to incorporate the book British and Foreign state papers that was sent to me. Well, that book was produced in 1888. Not terribly archival or in good condition. So after much consideration (playing with the crumbling pages) I decided to rip the cover book cloths off and use them in the paintings as collage elements. For those of you looking close enough - they are the dark blue and brown portions of the painting.

how she taught her garden to sing Each panel is 18” x 28” x 2”. Mixed media acrylic – including: canvas, book collage, graphite, crayon and oil pastel on wood panel. Price $750 each. They will be hanging at the show starting September 5th. Please contact me at melissa@mphackmann.com if you are interested and I will put you in touch with the curator.

While I was anxious to get going on these paintings for the upcoming show they were also a great excuse to test out a few new approaches for my upcoming mixed media class at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts this fall. In addition to carving into the wood with my printmaking tools, I incorporated paint, oil pastel and collage into both the canvas and the wood surface on these... It was fun to work into the wood surface as well as on top of the wood.

This is just a peek at my mom's amazing garden. You should see this thing - it's unbelievable. I think my paintings take a long time to work on until I watch her out there in the heat fighting off the bugs, deer, weeds, moles, an occasional turkey and bunnies in that garden day after day. Sing Garden Sing!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Inside Inspiration – Water Based Media

I have a few spots left in the one week workshop I'll be teaching this fall (September 21-27) at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts. Sign up here! It's a creative mecca tucked in the smoky mountains of Tennesse. The campus is gorgeous and there's plenty of room to lay out your art toys for the week and play. Ahh... the very thought of not having relocate materials (and myself) for a week and focus (aka play) without distractions gets me in the mood to start packing now!

And as a matter of a fact, I have started packing. A lumber crayon here, a wood burner there, here some ink, there some paint, everywhere a graphite stick! I've been experimenting here in my studio on some new ideas and materials that I'll be bringing with me. It's going to be a mark making marathon!

Inside Inspiration – Water Based Media:
Translate memorable experiences into visuals in various ways with the goal of exploring mixed media. This class will include daily demonstrations in drawing, composition, color, collage, and approaches for mixing them together. Experiment with a variety of water based materials and collage in big and small ways. Use class time to experiment with materials and pursue more in-depth individual projects. Later in the week, you will have the option to work in a larger format. Beginner level, even if you don’t draw.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Beehive no longer for sale or rent

WhoooOOOWEEeee what a month I'm having. I just received a call from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities that they would like to acquire Beehive for sale or rent. This mixed media painting was on display at this years artomatic show.

I love when my artwork is displayed in a public space for many to enjoy. What could be better than sharing my images and marks with many? This is one of my favorites that inspired me to do a series. The commission has acquired four pieces from me, but this is the first painting. The previous purchases were prints.

Beehive for sale or rent: Acrylic, graphite, crayon, canvas, collage, and found materials on paper. 26" x 40"

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