Monthly Archives: February 2013

The Voyage Home

 

Research tells us that sea turtles often return to their birth place to lay their eggs.  Some say they follow Earth’s magnetic field in a very scientific fashion, but a small part of me wonders if they simply return to the place they feel safe and comfortable–home.

On my Artist’s Journey, ‘home’ is a pencil and paper.  A Graphite Girl at heart, I often return to my pencils when I feel frustrated while working in color.

As I say goodbye to February, I wanted to celebrate the final Throwback Thursday of the month with a graphite piece.  It is a reminder that when I’m feeling lost, I just have to pick up a pad and pencil to find my way back home.

“The Voyage Home”–graphite on Arches Cover

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Downsizing

 When I fly, if I’m given the option to bring a carry-on bag rather than having to check a bag, the choice is simple.  It’s easy to maneuver my carry-on as I make my way through the airport.  I don’t have to wait at the baggage carousel, and I don’t need a bellman’s assistance when I reach my destination.  I pack less, and have less to unpack when I get home.  Sometimes it just makes sense to downsize.

On my Artist’s Journey, I have downsized for my current series.  I typically work on a canvas of at least 16×20 inches, but this week I’m painting on 8×8 inch canvases.  The small canvases are easy to transport back and forth to class, and as an added bonus, I’m using a lot less paint.  There are plenty of times when my work calls for a large canvas, but on this project, I’m enjoying the maneuverability and portability of my ‘carry-on’ canvases.

“Nap Time”–Acrylic on Canvas–1 of 4 from the series “Time”

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Well Traveled

Sea turtles are some of the most proficient navigators in the animal kingdom.  They can travel thousands of unmapped miles in warm ocean currents for migratory or nesting purposes.  I am in awe of their beauty, strength, and design.  This week’s Throwback Thursday is dedicated to nature’s ultimate traveler, who is often with me in spirit on my own Journey.

“Well Traveled”–Colored Pencil on Arches Cover

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Ready. Set. Go!

 

Any traveler knows that preparation is the key to a successful trip.  On my Artist’s Journey, careful planning is essential to travel from ‘concept’ to ‘finished painting’.  Forming an idea, sketching it out, choosing a color palette, and prepping the surface are all details that must be ironed out before the first brush stroke hits the canvas.  On my latest trek, I have successfully handled all of the particulars, and I’m on my way.  This is where the real fun begins, and all of that planning hopefully pays off. 

Thumbnail Sketches

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Color Palette

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Final Sketch on Canvas–I’m ready to paint!

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The American Gentleman

I’m working on a new series in acrylic, and I can’t think of a more suitable subject than my Boston Terriers, the breed commonly referred to as ‘The American Gentleman’.  I have three willing models lined up and ready to pose. I’ll be posting my progress along the way, and eventually, the finished paintings. 

“The American Gentleman”–Acrylic on Gessobord

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My Funny Valentine

This week, Throwback Thursday falls on Valentine’s Day, so it’s only fitting that I post a painting of one of my four-legged loves, Champ.  He patiently poses for countless photographs and happily tolerates the occasional costume I ask him to wear.  If I had even half of his patience, I would be a better person.

“Patience”–Watercolor pencil on Arches Cover

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Time Crunch

While I consider myself to be a completely proficient multi-tasker, some days it is difficult for me to carve out time in my studio.  A growing number of obligations, interruptions, and procrastinations rudely barricade my studio door to prevent me from moving forward with my art.  At the end of any given day, I find myself wishing for more time.  Time is a fixed commodity.  It is the great equalizer.  We all have the exact same 24 hours in our days. What we do with those precious hours, in some ways, defines us.  And since I would like to be defined as an ‘artist’, I will push past my time-sapping nemeses and reclaim my studio.  There’s a blank canvas waiting patiently for some of my precious, priceless time.

“Goldfish”–Acrylic and Swarovski Crystals on Canvas

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To Boldly Go

One of my all-time favorite television shows is Star Trek.  I love the characters and the exotic planets they explore, but mostly, I admire the way the crew boldly goes where no one has gone before, not knowing what might lie ahead.  That takes guts.  Luckily, it’s just a TV show, so even if things go horribly wrong, all will be well in the end.

On my Artist’s Journey, I typically choose the safe route, the proven path, the road ‘more often’ traveled.  But today, I was an explorer.  I donned my uniform (aka:apron), set a course, and headed out into the unknown–warp 9.  Though I didn’t posses the bravery of Kirk or Picard, I did muster up enough courage to seek out new watercolor techniques.  Armed with a mister and a bottle of masking fluid, I decided to boldly go where I had not gone before.  I didn’t have the safety of an expensive starship to consider on my mission, but I did have a pricey sheet of watercolor paper that I certainly didn’t want to see get sucked into a black hole.  When I explore strange new worlds, I do so without an experienced crew or the support of Starfleet.  I don’t even have a script writer to ensure my safety.  I am on my own.  Sometimes I fail, but other times, I create something beautiful.

“To Boldly Go”–watercolor on Arches Aquarelle

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Love

During the month of February, in honor of ‘love’, I will post an old favorite piece on what I’ve heard referred to as ‘Throwback Thursdays’.  This week’s piece is from a dry media series I call “Dreaming”.  You can view the entire series on my Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/tamberrinoartstudio.  

“I Had the Most Vivid Dream” –pastels on Arches Cover

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My Mother’s Jewelry Box

I’ve always been a big fan of sparkle and shine.  I have fond, vivid memories of gazing deep into the endless stair steps of my grandmother’s enormous emerald cut diamond ring.  As a child, I logged countless hours trying on pieces from my mother’s crystal-encrusted costume jewelry collection.  I spent my teenage years in the 1970’s draped in shiny, satiny polyester.  The eighties brought shimmer to my face courtesy of the flashy Ultima ll cosmetics line.  Even in the muted decade that followed, I still found ways to sparkle. I felt it was time for a more mature shine, so gold, platinum, and gemstones provided my twinkle in the 90’s. That being said, no one cheered louder than I when fashion’s sequins and glitter helped ring in the new century.  In my objective opinion, everything should sparkle.

Even on my Artist’s Journey, I try to sneak in a little sparkle and shine.  I have metallic paints that I often brush on my canvas ever so lightly to create a subtle glimmer.  But this week, I grew bold.  While digging through a craft bin in my studio, I came across some leftover Swarovski crystals just begging to be used.  Valencia College officially labels my Independent Study as “Mixed Media Exploration,”–which basically means ‘anything goes’– so I got out my tweezers and glue, and affixed the crystals to a previously painted piece.  The results were definitely not traditional. They may have been a little gaudy or garish by painterly standards, but I didn’t care.  For a few short hours, I was a young girl again, happily digging through my mother’s jewelry box.

“Something Fishy” (the ‘sparkle and shine’ edition)  Acrylic and Swarovski crystals on canvas

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