Seeking Shelter : Studio Images

The Preble County Art Association and the Victoria Theatre Association are presenting the upcoming invitational art exhibition, Bridges of Preble County. The show will be on display at the Schuster Performing Arts Center from March 15 - March 22, 2016, during the production of Bridges of Madison County. I am honored to be one of the selected artists participating in this exhibit.

Seeking Shelter measures 36" x 36" and begins with a birch panel as the base. Recently, I acquired some flight maps from my friend, Ari, and I cut those into 4" squares which will be applied to the panel like a quilt using gel medium. Upon this base of collaged elements, I will adhere a stylized drawing of a human/butterfly hybrid in front of a covered bridge inspired form. The figure is inspired by the amazing butterfly dress made by my friend, Tracy McElfesh, co-owner of Sew Dayton. I had been wanting to make a painting about the Monarch Butterfly and it's struggles to find food and habitat during migration and this seemed like the perfect time. Even though this year marks an upturn in the population, more than 90% of Monarch Butterflies have vanished in the last 25 years. A portion of the sale of this piece will go to the Monarch Wings Across Ohio project. 

A close-up of the maps. 

A close-up of the maps. 

Debating between a white or continuous green border. 

Debating between a white or continuous green border. 

Inspiration for shelter. A bridge located in Preble County. 

Inspiration for shelter. A bridge located in Preble County. 

Photo from shoot with Gwendolyn Vo in the butterfly dress by Tracy McElfesh. Read her blog POST about how she created it!

Photo from shoot with Gwendolyn Vo in the butterfly dress by Tracy McElfesh. Read her blog POST about how she created it!

Working on figure scale and posture with the drawing taped to the panel for stability. 

Working on figure scale and posture with the drawing taped to the panel for stability. 

Gluing the white border down with guide marks to keep it level. 

Gluing the white border down with guide marks to keep it level. 

Ari approves the use of his old flight maps.

Ari approves the use of his old flight maps.

Figure drawing adhered to the map surface. I have seen this technique used before, but I had not tried it on this scale piece. There is more texture than I am used to working with, but success!

Figure drawing adhered to the map surface. I have seen this technique used before, but I had not tried it on this scale piece. There is more texture than I am used to working with, but success!

Blocking in color on the wings and shelter. 

Blocking in color on the wings and shelter. 

I did not like how the bridge inspiration seemed to float awkwardly in the space, so I added some panels to extend the form to the border. 

I did not like how the bridge inspiration seemed to float awkwardly in the space, so I added some panels to extend the form to the border. 

Blocking in the color on the new shape. 

Blocking in the color on the new shape. 

Bringing in some dark tones with Thalo Teal and Naphthol Crimson. The number 13 is a reference to the Greeting Bridge shown earlier, which is labeled with "No. 13" and one of my favorite numbers is 13. I thought this would look better than "Greeting Bridge" or something similar. 

Bringing in some dark tones with Thalo Teal and Naphthol Crimson. The number 13 is a reference to the Greeting Bridge shown earlier, which is labeled with "No. 13" and one of my favorite numbers is 13. I thought this would look better than "Greeting Bridge" or something similar. 

Face blocked in. 

Face blocked in. 

Giving her some character and a better chin. 

Giving her some character and a better chin. 

Modeled her eyes after Monarch eyes. 

Modeled her eyes after Monarch eyes. 

Trimming the hoodie with some teal piping. 

Trimming the hoodie with some teal piping. 

A detail of the hands in progress and the maps. 

A detail of the hands in progress and the maps. 

Legs before....

Legs before....

And new sexy legs inspired by latex. 

And new sexy legs inspired by latex. 

Friday night wino painting with Tinsel supervising. 

Friday night wino painting with Tinsel supervising. 

Visually connecting the skirt to the hoodie style with some teal piping. Changing it up a bit from Tracy's original design to add a bit more color. 

Visually connecting the skirt to the hoodie style with some teal piping. Changing it up a bit from Tracy's original design to add a bit more color. 

One problem with this collage technique...If you need to make a change, you need to take drastic measures. I had to do this alteration on one of her ankles also. Scrap away the paper so there is not a hard edge, then cover with paint. 

One problem with this collage technique...If you need to make a change, you need to take drastic measures. I had to do this alteration on one of her ankles also. Scrap away the paper so there is not a hard edge, then cover with paint. 

Adding glazes of color to the map background to suggest turbulent skies and add some more depth. 

Adding glazes of color to the map background to suggest turbulent skies and add some more depth. 

Playing around with the idea of using map circles as rain drops, but I do not like the scale and I think they are distracting. Most likely will go with clear Pouring Medium instead for smaller, clear raindrops. 

Playing around with the idea of using map circles as rain drops, but I do not like the scale and I think they are distracting. Most likely will go with clear Pouring Medium instead for smaller, clear raindrops. 

Pouring Medium to the rescue! Rain drops drying. 

Pouring Medium to the rescue! Rain drops drying. 

Using a technique I learned from Wylie Beckert, explained in this post.   

Using a technique I learned from Wylie Beckert, explained in this post.   

New glaze, which was applied to soften the white and unify the two layers a bit better, is dry. Going over it with another layer of white. 

New glaze, which was applied to soften the white and unify the two layers a bit better, is dry. Going over it with another layer of white. 

New improved covered bridge. Some tweaks to the background and I think it may almost be done! 

New improved covered bridge. Some tweaks to the background and I think it may almost be done! 

The finished painting. View purchase information.