Collecting

WALNUT INK

In October I was inspired to make some walnut ink, based on a recipe in the book “Make Ink” by Canadian author Jason Logan. I put a call out on my Facebook page and to a to a local Facebook group asking for help in finding walnut hulls. Pretty soon I had two good leads. One was a tree in downtown Duncan, BC. in an alley behind a shoe repair store. The second lead was from an art acquaintance, who out on a walk that morning, saw a neighbour gathering walnuts- she passed his name onto me. I was able to make two large batches of about 8 cups of hulls each. I cooked the walnut hulls on the camp stove; straining and filtering the liquid. It was a lot of work, especially in the filtering process, but worth it. The colour is such a rich deep walnut colour. Love it. The two batches are called “Festubert” and “Sahtlem”, for the street and area they were grown in. I will use this ink in my drawings.

Walnut ink drawing.jpg

Collecting Yellow - December 9, 2015

Well, I never guessed that it would be hard to find yellow. It really took a lot of sleuthing on my walk today to find yellow. There is yellow orange, and yellow green but to find just yellow was hard this time of year. I found a mushed up phone book that someone had driven over dozens of times in their drive way, I brought it home for the yellow pages, but decided not to use it. I found a small yellow Rona Hardware bag - the kind you put nails in and that was it for found objects. I did a lot of editing, so there was some material gathered that didn't make it to the final cut.

All of the yellow collection with the phone book yellow pages and the Rona bag - [December 10th] after everything has dried out.

Collecting Orange - December 7,2015

Challenge on today's walk was to find objects that were orange. Five minutes into my walk I found an orange balloon - couldn't believe it. Turned around and across the road was the remains of a pumpkin - probably from Halloween, it was mushy buy I could pull the skin off in several pieces; felt very pleased with that find, even pulled off the short stem. Other finds today were a orange cigarette  butt, a pink plastic circle with a hole in it - kind of like a life saver shape; and a metal washer.  I was really pleased with the orangey rose hips and even two orangey roses in not too bad of shape but really on their way out. I found those at a little park. It is really interesting that once you put your focus on something how that particular colour just pops into view. I know the balloon and pumpkin had been there for a while but I hadn't even noticed them. This is turning out to be a really fun project and it gives a whole different feel to my walk and what I look at and notice. I love it!

Collecting Red -- December 6, 2015

Walking in the rain today in my neighbourhood of Cobble Hill, BC. I focused on collecting mostly red objects from nature and the manufactured world. Bits of man made objects included, 2 tiny pieces from a red balloon, red tape, 2 small pieces of red plastic. A "Chupa Chups" candy wrapper in red, brown and yellow, [I have never had one]. A white plastic tip from a cigarillo, red plastic bottle cap, 2 white elasticized strings - most likely from a roasted chicken and found in different locations. Various types of leaves, blackberries on a prickly stem that I had to cut with my small red Swiss army pen knife - the blackberries were red, most likely ones that haven't ripened yet, rose hips, arbutus bark, pine cone and pine cone scales, mushrooms.  A red blade of grass from a New Zealand flax plant from the front of our property. Salal leaves with their red stems...one was an older leaf that had turned red and two small new leaves. Interesting how they are both red at either end of their life cycle. Love those large brown/red mushrooms with their fancy gills.

Collecting December 4, 2015

A beautiful sunny morning for my walk -- I picked up lots of interesting things on the roadside. A "Scoubidou" key chain done in a box stitch of pink and red. I used to make key chains like this when I was a kid; that brought back memories. A piece of red plastic string, stems from leaves, a gardening glove, an HB Venus pencil, a black plastic knife, two plastic lids, a plastic ring, tin foil, cigarette pack, cigarette buts, blue plastic doggie bag, thankfully empty, dime, purple flower, two daisy's, pieces of bark, sticks, leaves, mushroom, seed pods, fungus...

Collecting

On my walk today in Cobble Hill, BC I collected these plant materials on the side of the road. It was a mild but blustery day, leaves were blowing all over the place. Once I started to lay out the materials on my art table I was amazed at the beauty; incredible colour, texture and patterns. A rich source for drawing later today and tomorrow morning.

WORKSHOPS

"Collecting, Observing, Exploring" - i will be teaching this workshop.

I will be teaching this course at the Vancouver Island School of Art  

Nov 21 & 22 Sat & Sun, 10 am – 5 pm

Drawing: Collecting, Observing, Exploring (DRWG w137-12)

This workshop concentrates on ways of looking and working. You will take a walk in the VISA garden and collect objects with lines, texture, pattern and shapes. Back in the classroom, you will study these sources of inspiration to extract information and interpret what you see through mark making. The focus of this workshop is to explore new ways to respond to your “collections” and to discover their essences rather than a direct representation. There will be an exploration into materials, techniques and mark making through sketching, drawing, painting, ink washes, stitching, mono printing, and stamping. A variety of surfaces will be provided: BFK, Stonehenge, Kraft, tracing paper, newspapers, tissue paper, etc. This workshop will provide a great way to get new ideas for drawing, painting and other forms of design. No experience necessary. 


The following images of seaweed and barnacles are examples of how I use nature as a source of inspiration in my artwork. The body of work below ties in beautifully with what we will be doing in my next workshop titled “Collecting, Observing, Exploring” As many of you know – I have been working for several years now on an ongoing series titled “Intertidal”. 

OTHER TYPES OF INSPIRATION ON MY BEACH WALKS

BEAUTIFUL RICH SEAWEED AND CRITTERS

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Below are observation sketches of seaweed, along with mark making exploration and pattern studies that I see within the seaweed and detailed study drawings of their cellular structures. 

Mixed Media Explorations of Seaweed and Barnacles

RESEARCHING BARNACLES AND INSPIRED WORK

CLOSE UP STUDIES OF STAR FISH WITH MAGNIFYING GLASS AND PATTERN INVENTIONS

 

SKETCHBOOK WORK DEVELOPING ABSTRACT IDEAS FROM ALL OF MY STUDIES AND FINDINGS.

EXPLORATIONS INTO SURFACE AND TEXTURES

SMALL FINISHED STUDIES INSPIRED BY THE COLLECTIONS, OBSERVATIONS AND EXPLORATIONS 

FINISHED DRAWING "DRIFTERS" © 2014 INSPIRED BY MY PLANKTON RESEARCH 2009


WORKSHOPS

Teaching 3 workshops.

I am pleased to announce that I will be teaching the following three workshops at the Vancouver Island School of Art [VISA]

All of the links below will take you directly to the website for the  Vancouver Island School of Art.

VANCOUVER ISLAND SCHOOL OF ART

The Vancouver Island School of Art is a learning community dedicated to the advancement of art education through comprehensive programs and presentations for adults of all ages. The focus of the courses and workshops offered by the school is on technique, personal expression and contemporary context.

 

Drawing: Creating Marks Through Actions (DRWG w103)

This two-day workshop focuses on unconventional ways of creating marks. The first day involves creating a collection of marks on paper using traditional tools including pen, ink and graphite, as well as more unconventional ones such as an awl, smoke, needle, thread, hammer and nail. A range of movements and actions will be explored: puncturing, smoking, burning, rubbing, cutting and sewing, etc. You will make a book and a collage from mark-making explorations on the second day. Design and composition will be covered along with a demonstration on different methods of adhering collage materials. This workshop is ideal for those looking to expand their mark-making vocabulary and create unique surfaces with inventive marks. No experience necessary. 
Oct 3 & 4 Sat & Sun, 10am - 5pm
Jill Ehlert 
Tuition: $235.00 (12 hrs) (materials included)

ACTIONS: Fumage [Smoking] , Drawing, Erasing, Punching, Puncturing,Piercing, Staining, Burning, Scorching, Folding, Cutting, Ripping, Stitching, Crumpling, Layering, Frottage [Rubbing]  TOOLS: Candle smoke, Pen, Brush and Ink, Pencil, Eraser, Hammer and Nail, Push Pins, Punch, Tea and Coffee Stain, Incense, Blades, Needle and Thread...

All artwork below is by Jill Ehlert


 

Sketchbook Development (DRWG w132-6)

The focus of this class is to give a series of fast paced exercises to get you comfortable and working in your sketchbook. A wide range of ideas, materials and techniques will be explored in your sketchbook to get you started; they are designed to keep you going back to your sketchbook. Backgrounds, techniques, mark making explorations, sketching, drawing, writing, etc. will be explored. You will leave this workshop inspired to make sketchbook work part of a daily practice. No experience necessary. 
Nov 8 Sunday, 10am - 5pm
Jill Ehlert 
Tuition: $135.00 (6 hrs) (materials included)

All artwork below is by Jill Ehlert


 

Drawing: Collecting, Observing, Exploring (DRWG w137-12)

This workshop concentrates on ways of looking and working. You will take a walk in the VISA garden and collect objects with lines, texture, pattern and shapes. Back in the classroom, you will study these sources of inspiration to extract information and interpret what you see through mark making. The focus of this workshop is to explore new ways to respond to your “collections” and to discover their essences rather than a direct representation. There will be an exploration into materials, techniques and mark making through sketching, drawing, painting, ink washes, stitching, mono printing, and stamping. A variety of surfaces will be provided: BFK, Stonehenge, Kraft, tracing paper, newspapers, tissue paper, etc. This workshop will provide a great way to get new ideas for drawing, painting and other forms of design. No experience necessary. 
Nov 21 & 22 Sat & Sun, 10am - 5pm
Jill Ehlert 
Tuition: $235.00 (12 hrs) (materials included

All artwork below is by Jill Ehlert