Evolution series, the first images – Steve Gray


Here are a few images of the first stencil paintings I have done… results are okay so far. this comes from an earlier post about the idea check it out here.




I’m liking the texture and the colours are so far just three off whites.

Evolution of an art series – Steve Gray

Hi All this should be a short log of a new series I am about to launch into, drop by and see what happens as I work to produce a bunch of pieces. Cheers Steve Gray….


I’ve had an Art idea in my head for some time now, even while creating the last “Harm” series, which was a big part of the Regionalis group show I was part of earlier in 2009.  It will use similar colours, I still have a few containers of those colours from that series and will aim to use similar paint application. I will be doing it with acrylics on heavy cotton rag water colour paper about 5 x 7 size, so they should be quick and flow readily (I can only hope!)

The first of two cutout "stencils"

The first of two cutout "stencils"

From the Harm series (see the direct log I wrote on it.) you can see the colours and read about my approach to that bunch of images and the concepts etc. Mainly though check out the images around July in the log I wrote, which uses the word harm white on white on canvas, with heavy textures. The way the words went on (paint wise) and the subtlety grabed my attention, so this new series is an attempt to explore this.

It will almost be a study, but I err to see it purely as such and am thinking of it as an essence approach to the whole colour and texture devices used earlier. Some will be thinking I probably should have done this lot first before starting the harm series as a study into the colours and textures.

Both stencils ready to go.

Both stencils ready to go.

So with two stencil I am aiming to leave the edges as raw paper for ease of framing and the top one will create different textural arrangements on the page.

Concept… Probably looks to the average viewer as a simple exercise in colour but those who have checked out the harm series would be a little skeptical of such a simplistic view. So lets see what develops…

Creativity? YES! :)

Every now and then something catches my eye and this blog on creativity did it today… 🙂


Part art, part business… yes thanks!

Black Saturday radio stories

ABC radio in Gippsland has been interviewing people about their experiences in the Black Saturday fires which devastated communities in the region, here three Contemporary Visual Artists chat about their work in the aftermath of the fires and their experiences on the day… HUGE!

Kerrie Warren

Werner and Ursula Theinert

sheepish art

Art classes

Sharon Anderson will be holding a photo screenprinting workshop on the Sat 4th and Sun 5th of April. 
Also a Basic drawing Still life & portraits using pencil, charcoal and my favourite medium pastel.
This is 5 sessions starting Sun afternoons, May 3rd until 31st May at ARC in Yinnar Vic.
There are a few other great workshops this semester including Blacksmithing with Bruce Beamish and Botanical Drawing with Laurie Andrews.

Check out the ARC website for more info and if you can please pass this info on to anyone you think may be interested.
contact ARC ph 51 631 310
email: arcyinnar@speedweb.com.au
Website: www.arcyinnar.org.au

How is this not conceptual art…

Meet Craig…

Is it, or is it not Conceptual Art… Your thoughts???

It is posted as a “social experiment”. Nah I don’t see it that way, but I guess I’m prejudiced as I see Art in most places I go!

Ideas and inspiration plus…

This has got to be useful for anyone who thinks…. Is that you?


March 28th 2009 in Melbourne should be useful, register now…


An amazing “chronicle” of Alisons life thus far… by Jack Radcliffe, for me this is a photographic delight, great moments captured in real life and handed to us to see… perplexing…

If you are into photographing people, check this out, if not, take a look from the development of life side of things… So much said without words.

The Month…

Here’s an art activity to perhaps keep you from falling into a void with your work, (Not that this ever happens!) or exploring the media and things that happen in our daily lives.

For each day of one month, make an art work about something that happened in the news, you could go for sensational headlines, or page three small stories of low interest but perhaps piercing value.

Perhaps some of the days you will just enlarge a section of the paper and create a simple collage, if ideas are not forthcoming… Perhaps the main works will be the same size all the way through. Perhaps the works become a wide “digital” panorama image on a wide website site where the viewer scrolls through the days.

Whatever the end product, the aim is to work with the inspiration of daily news (images, text, sound, video’s etc.) then explore how this connects each day (or not.) think about abstract ways you could present the information, or ways to use text in the works, and will you let the viewer know what day each one represents?

You could adapt the exercise to look at set chunks of history or a time based piece that explores the same time of day or night over an extended period.

Exploring colour

One of the best things I remember at art school was being given a task to develop a range of colours for a litho print, 2 days later I had an amazing array of colours in little foil packets ready to select some for the print. Thing is I could not tell you what the print turned out like but I remember the process of mixing small amounts of sticky ink and wrapping it up for later use!

Using colour in art is important and over time I have seen various exercises that explore primary and secondary colours but going to pastel and tertiary colours is another thing, here are a few things simple projects you can do on your own or at school to explore colour more.

Colour explorer

Create a series of squares on A4 card (about 6 is good) and divide the squares in half, now put colours in each side and add contrasting colours to the other side of the square, create multiple versions of these practicing better paint application, and colour combinations. I am sure it can be done on a computer with a simple paint program, and it would save a lot of time, but if you want to be a painter the brush technique development and mixing paints is invaluable.

Other approaches – Divide the squares into three sections – Make larger squares – Make a series of five stripes of varying widths and explore the colour combinations – Use strips of coloured paper in varying widths to make a collage of coloured strips – Use overlapping coloured paper shapes to explore colour and design ideas.

Even though these seem simple the variations are endless and can help you to develop an understanding of colours that work well together and those that clash. In a sense it’s like creating your own colour swatches, the type you see in paint stores.

Want to take it further, cut up coloured strips of paper and create stylised (simplified) landscapes using the strips pastes in various combinations, try it and see what happens.

Brainstorming on a Fresh Level

I have just come across this, tried it a bit and thought “let the world know…” In an art sense I am big on using words to explore things creatively and one of those is brainstorming.

Here is what I found it’s an online brainstorming tool that’s free to use and allegedly you can have others access the same site and work collaboratively, and for a group art project (say a community arts project) that could be very useful.

I am think however that its just a great tool to use just on my own to explore ideas.

Nice site dear bubbl people! (hey I wonder if they look like Michelin men? 😉

Investigate and experiment

In the early units of study for art in secondary schools there is an emphasis on investigation and experimentation. The aim being to give you some starting points to creating and looking at art.

One of the big challenges I see with this is the time given to do it in, so often teachers do what they can and hope for the best. If you want to get ahead in the “study stakes” you might find you need to create a whole HEAP of homework for yourself! hey don’t stress out from it, just think of it in terms of “I want to do art and I want to make sure I give it my best shot” so here are a bunch of possible ways to “get ahead” and stay there.

  1. Visit art galleries – An easy option but too many people don’t do it, jump online (oh wait, you are already…) and start googling art galleries in your area and beyond. Go for commercial galleries and make a habit of getting to as many as you can during holidays and weekends. Analyse everything and collect postcards, invites and other information to give you ideas and ways to explore art further. Remember many galleries change the displays every 3 – 4 weeks so know when the next show is on.
  2. Explore a variety of techniques – Example drawing, with pencil, charcoal, crayon, pens, brushes, paint, sticks dipped in paint or ink… Check out art classes offered during holidays and weekends, they may give you access to materials and process you don’t have at school…
  3. Chat to artists – Find ones with websites, there might be a number of local ones you can catch up with, ask them questions, interview them, find out what makes them tick. Then use that information to give yo more starting points.
  4. Use a journal or visual Diary –  Whatever you want to call it, put all your images, drawings, scraps etc in one place, then use it as a resource to explore visual ideas more deeply. Often you can get ideas for new works by flipping through a journal and seeing what images or concepts stand out to you.
  5. Explore creativity – This is not often taught in schools, many teachers may think that students that do art have some special “talent” it’s not always the case. If you have some art ability and you are studying at this level check out as many ways that you can find to be creative, check out lateral thinking, critical thinking, problem solving… do searches on these and other topics to do with the creative process and see what others are doing.
  6. Use words – Okay it’s visual art, so why use words? Well not all of us have a “visual mind” or if we do it may need a break from pictures and words can do that. Words, phrases, poetry, stories, metaphors, all of these can give you creative starting points to work from. One way is to look at writing or mind mapping a bunch of words on a topic and then checking out the connections that may arise from the investigation. Stories might  give you a way to illustrate a theme, it might lead you to writing a story to then illustrate, either way they can be powerful starting points for you.
  7. Ask questions – Chat to people about art, survey them if you like, to find out what their opinions are…  you might be surprised at how much people know… or don’t know about art.

If any or all of the above don’t get you thinking about ways to investigate art further then I’ll eat my hat, you will note that it gives a bunch of starting points to work with that should spark some interest for you at some stage.