“Butterfly Blues” 10-inch diameter, mixed media
This is the first in a series I am calling “Plat du Jour.”
In an attempt to ease myself back into life and keep myself distracted, I decided to finish a project that I started a while ago. In the Fall of 2013 I took a Mixed Media class through the Ann Arbor Art Center. I found it refreshing and inspiring because it took me out of my comfort zone by exploring new materials and processes including working with pourable resin. Our teacher showed us artwork from an amazing artist Riusuke Fukahori who creates paintings of fish in vessels using layers of paint and resin with such detail and precision that they really do trick the eye. Our assignment was to find a vessel and experiment with the resin.
I chose a plate as my vessel and my first attempt was collaging some pen and ink drawings of flowers with solid colored paper circles. Unfortunately pourable resin is kind of finicky and if you don’t mix the right proportions or pour too-thick layers you end up with a bubbly, sticky mess (you can see lots of teeny tiny bubbles in the close-up picture above). Even though I love that first plate conceptually, it’s does not need to be shown publicly. Fortunately, I bought about 10 plates of all different styles and sizes and started this second butterfly plate while class was still in session and finally finished it this week—I guess that’s how the creative process works sometimes! For this particular piece, I layered fabric, acrylic paint and gold marker pen between layers of resin (the decorative rim with birds and the scrolling border was existing from the manufacturer).
Riusuke Fukahori I am not, but the process is really fun and I’ve got a whole stack of plates left to experiment with.