• desmyrio

RESIDENCY at ALLI

On September 15th I attended my first session as a Resident Artist at the Art League of Long Island.

Through this residency my intention is to experiment with techniques and explore materials that I am not familiar with and eventually incorporate some of these newly acquired skills into my artistic practice.

My journey began with a session of life model short poses, a practice I greatly enjoyed because it kept me entirely in the present moment. Six more sessions followed; 2 min, 5 min, 10 min and 20 min poses, no time to think just to create the poses on paper. Trust the eye, the hand and the moment. It had been many years since the last time I drew that way that I had forgotten how much I cherished the feeling.

Printmaking is an area of art that I wanted to explore for a long time. I chose to attend the four sessions printmaking workshop with Stephanie Navon-Jacobson as the instructor. The first session I learned how to make mono prints using water based colors and I observed other participants using a technique called “solar plate”. This technique immediately attracted my attention. It reminded me of the cyanotype technique, as they are both photographic in nature.

At the second session, I had already prepared the transparencies of my photos in order to make a solar plate and I was ready to dive in and explore. I made my first solar plate, a print and a ghost print. Experiencing this some ideas started to emerge and take form in my mind. The third session I had specific conversations with the instructor on how to put my ideas on prints. I was so happy to see these ideas transform on paper.

In the last session I kept exploring to become more familiar with this technique and process and continued putting my ideas on printmaking paper. I also learned that there is always a Plan B when Plan A does not work exactly the way I have it in my mind. Being flexible, embrace and accept “the accident” and use it to the advantage of the artwork, are all part of the beauty of the process of printmaking and of the learning process as well. From my limited experience thus far I can tell that there is always a surprise awaiting when you lift the paper… and this is the best part!

I enthusiastically watched the results of the process and to my surprise I found myself working independently towards the end of the session. The instructor and the other participants, more experienced than me, were always happy to answer my questions and help with the process. It was such a pleasant experience and supportive environment. I am looking forward to further explore the possibilities of this technique and experiment in applying my ideas on print making paper.

Expecting more print making surprises to come my way!


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