Super simple printing method + GIVEAWAY

In this weeks post I've got a little update, instructions for a super simple + addicting printing method, and a book giveaway for you.

This past Monday (5/25) was day fifty of The 100 Day Project. I've got to say I am totally in love with my project (#100DaysOfDayBreakPlay) and plan on keeping some version of it on the other side of the project's completion. I have done less hand lettering than I expected. Instead it's been perfect for working on mini-projects like building a lego Sydney Opera House and making my Strike Away Show submission.

When I got an early release copy of Playing with Surface Design by Courtney Cerruti I knew it would play into my morning routine. You may remember me sharing the book Playing with Image Transfers last year, also by Courtney. Like the former, Playing with Surface Design is full of technique and project ideas. In the book she covers; gelatin printing, paste papers, mark making, and briefly touches on marbling. 

Because gelatin printing has been on my craft to-do list for awhile I jumped to try out that project first.

One of my first prints using cuttings from my parents garden.

One of my first prints using cuttings from my parents garden.

Leaves and lavender stems

Leaves and lavender stems

Paper cut outs

Paper cut outs

The second printing of paper cut outs and string after they've been removed from the gelatin plate.

The second printing of paper cut outs and string after they've been removed from the gelatin plate.

Bubble wrap 

Bubble wrap 

Strawberry baskets printed on blue paper

Strawberry baskets printed on blue paper

I can't stress enough how easy this printing process is. If you've been wanting to try any form of printing, try this first! It will make you feel like an instant success and is a good building block for understanding other printing methods. And if you have experience with any other kind of printing you will likely find yourself equally enamored with the jello print process.

As a printing method the cost of investment is very low, as little as $40. You probably already have some of the supplies needed.

Supplies
— Plain unsweetened Gelatin (not Jello, though it is fun to say Jello Prints!)
— A cookie sheet (you probably own that), or a disposable baking pan has more depth.
— At least two colors of water soluble printing ink
Rubber brayer
— Acetate or a smooth tile from the hardware store
— Paper (try starting out with card stock or bristol).
— Space in your fridge
— Two hours of time (1 hour for your gelatin to set-up and 1 hour to print. Though when you start printing you might not be able to stop)
— And of course, as a helpful resource the book, Playing with Surface Design

Basic Steps (more info in the book)
1. Make gelatin to fill a low wide dish. (This will be your printing plate)
2. Use your brayer to roll out ink color on hard surface.
3. Roll ink onto gelatin plate 
4. Place flat objects onto your inked plate. (leaves, string, paper shapes, or anything else you think of)
5. Lay a sheet of paper down on top, pressing firmly
6. Lift to see the magic.
7. Keep repeating the process to your hearts content. Add more depth to your prints with multiple layers of color.

One recommendation I have is to do your printing inside with moderate temperature. My first try at printing was outside in weather over 75 degrees which was a little too warm for a long print run.

GIVEAWAY
To enter for a chance to win a copy of Playing with Surface Design:
1. Head over to my Instagram and make sure you're following me.
2. Also be following @ccerruti
3. Tag a friend who you think would like the book in the comment section of the photo with the book cover. (Which will be posted the evening of Wednesday 5/27)
4. The winner will be chosen Sunday 5/31/2015. Winner must be in the Continental U.S. to win. As a bonus I'll also be sending the winner some gelatin prints to play with.

Full disclosure. I was given a pre-release copy of the book to promote. All recommendations are my own.

Show and Tell: Art Market San Francisco

ArtMrkt_7112.jpg

Spring in San Francisco has been blooming art excursions everywhere. Studio tours and Art Market happened a couple weeks ago. This year Art Market brought a mini Art Basel type experience to the Fort Mason area. At least that's what I imagine. I haven't yet been to Art Basel.

Art Market has been happening in SF for 5 years. This year felt different because a couple other events popped up at the same time to share in the buzz of art enthusiasts. If you don't know what Art Market is, it's an opportunity for galleries to show off the artists they represent all in one place. It feels like a contemporary art museum but you can purchase the art... well, someone can purchase the art. 

Happening at the same time this year was StArt Up Fair at Hotel Del Sol. This was a way for artist without representation to showcase their work for sale and potentially find representation. Being a short distance from Art Market hopefully enticed some galleries over to check out the work. I attended StArt Up and it was one of the most unique art going experiences I've had. Every hotel room featured an artist. All the regular hotel fixtures where still in the room including the beds. This meant some unique ways of exhibiting. Art hung on the cieling. Art laying on the bed. Art in the bathroom. Art clipped to hangers inside closets. Art as an immersive experience.

Lastly there was also the Parking Lot Art Fair. Unfortunately I couldn't go but did have a friend who participated. The parking lot show was a rogue take-over of several parking lots that most people walk through to enter the Fort Mason complex. I heard artists showed up at 6am to stake their claim. Most artists created installations as this event was not about selling but about the conversation of Art.

I only spent one afternoon perusing the art but one could easily spend the whole weekend. Below I'm sharing just a handful of the pieces from Art Market that caught my eye. If you're in the area and missed it this year it's worth putting on your calendar for next. And keep a look out for any other art fairs that may spring up next year.

1010 - "Limbus_07", acrylic on handcut paper. represented by Hashimoto Contemporary

1010 - "Limbus_07", acrylic on handcut paper. represented by Hashimoto Contemporary

Elise Ferguson

Elise Ferguson

Elise Ferguson. Close ups.

Elise Ferguson. Close ups.

Anne Neely

Anne Neely

Jeff Cairns

Jeff Cairns

Paul Wackers

Paul Wackers

Paul Wackers

Paul Wackers

Jeff Cohen

Jeff Cohen

Strike Anywhere, Inspiration Everywhere

Writing Strike Anywhere, Inspiration Everywhere on the my Strike Away Show submission was the last decision I made when making this art piece. And this piece is the end result of 2 weeks of play.

The Strike Away Show is a soon to be mounted exhibit of over 300 artists who have all used matches, matchbooks or matchboxes as their medium, inspiration, or canvas.

A couple weeks ago I wrote about my participation in The 100 Day Project and that my 100 days would be spent creating a routine for play (with craft and art) at the beginning of my day. Once I decided to make work for The Strike Away Show, I only had 2 weeks to complete my piece. It was the perfect opportunity to use my morning make sessions as the time to do the bulk of that work. 

A sampling of some of the photos I shared on Instagram.

A sampling of some of the photos I shared on Instagram.

Everyday I would post a photo of progress on Instagram. My progress was my play and experiments. I was using those moments of play to find inspiration for what to create with my matchboxes. I had bought 20 little matchboxes fully intending to use them as my micro canvases. But what to put on them? It wasn't until the second week of play that I decided I'd use my experiments to recreate a matchbox of my own. 

My piece is both a matchbox and a matchbook.

My piece is both a matchbox and a matchbook.

As I was finalizing my piece I realized, Strike Anywhere, Inspiration Everywhere, was a fitting statement for the process of creating my matchbox. 

Strike Away Show
on exhibit May 22nd-June 30th
Paxton Gate's Curiosities for Kids
766 Valencia St, San Francisco

Show opening is May 22nd.
Come see all the match box curiosities! Maybe over 300?! Unfortunately I won't be able to attend the opening but happy my work will be.

Pop-up at Rickshaw Bags

Bay Area locals, this posts for you!

There's a pop-up shop happening this Saturday at Rickshaw Bags in the Dog Patch. I'll be participating selling my Kitty Confetti goods along with five other vendors + Ritual Coffee.

The details:
Saturday May 2nd, 11am-3pm @ Rickshaw Bags. 904 22nd st. 
6 vendors + Ritual Coffee

After you shop the pop-up stay in the hood. The dog patch has lots to keep you amused. All within walking distance of Rickshaw is my favorite art supply store Arch, yummy treats at Mr. and Mrs. Miscellaneous (ice cream!), and for your visual senses The Museum of Craft and Design. 

You're guaranteed to leave the neighborhood with the perfect Mothers Day gift. 

Watercolor strings for Zentangle

I've shared about Zentangle here on the blog before but I don't think I've talked specifically about strings. Basically a string is a light framework for drawing a Zentangle pattern inside the shape created. They're typically drawn in pencil so that once you've tangled with ink those light lines recede and become unnoticeable. The second thing to know about a string is they're meant to come out of your pencil with ease and without trying to draw something specific. 

What I'm sharing with this project is a watercolor string that is actually very noticeable in the finished art. But in creating the watercolor line there is more randomness that occurs compared to drawing a line with a pencil.

I've created my "watercolor strings" a couple of ways. Note that none of those ways was taking a brush to the actual paper. I've dripped the watercolor onto the paper either using a brush or an eyedropper. You can make a bunch in one sitting to create a stockpile of pre-strung tiles.

Method 1

Method 1

Method 1
— Start with full sheets of cotton paper or bond paper.
— Have fun creating color combinations while dripping your water colors on your paper. You'll need to tip the sheet to make the color run, creating your lines.
— Alternately you can water down acrylics instead of watercolors.
— Use a ruler and x-acto knife to trim out as many 3.5 x 3.5 inch tiles as you can. After they're cut they can almost fit together like a puzzle. 
— Tangle to your hearts content

Method 2

Method 2

Method 2
— Follow all the instructions in Method 1 but use pre-cut Zentangle tiles instead.


Patterns used: Modified cheese cloth, Hollibaugh, Onion Drops, MmmForesty, and Papyrus.