Currently Digging

Currently Digging – September 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds – like an Artist who’s work caught my eye…, some Inspiration or the what, when and where that caught my eye and got my creative juices flowing, and Tools & Techniques I am currently digging like a new way to use a material or an application that I’m taking away. Hope you enjoy this.

In the book, I talk below as Inspiration, I was pointed to Ben Shahn.

“Liberation”

“Unemployment”

Illustrations above and below

I was especially curious to learn that Ben Shahn was a huge inspiration for Andy Warhol – and if you look at Warhols dotted line drawings you can actually see that. I always find it interesting to learn or see which other artist have been an inspiration for some well known artist.

I did enjoy reading “Old in Art School” by artist Nell Irvin Painter.

Painter, who is a Princeton historian, writes about her view and experience of going to art school at the age of 64 to become an artist. I enjoyed reading about her experiences in school, her challenges of seeing art with 20th century eyes and of letting go of the idea that if she follows her dream to be an artist, something she truly loves and wants to do, it doesn’t mean she has to be as good and successful in this new adventure as she was in her profession as an historian. “Old In Art School” challenges you to think about the role of race in the art world as well as the role of women but …on top of it all…the role of age as well. There were some areas in the book which I didn’t like that much as I felt she was getting a bit too much on about how accomplished and successful she is as an historian but I tried to get over that and also thought -well – why should she not brag about it, it is pretty cool. The book is a thought provoking read with passages that truly resonated as well with some references to artists which I enjoyed learning about.

A couple weeks ago I bought some new acrylic paint colors by Golden and I cannot get enough of them!

It is a pretty unusual color combo for me and yet I cannot stop using them:

You might recognize me using them in this art journal spread

and in this painting “Behind the Museum

and more…I love mixing them with other colors or making tints, tones and shades with them. Especially the Titan paints are a bit challenging but I enjoy just getting it to a point where I like the mixture. I think I would like to do this more often -going into the store to buy certain colors that look great as a palette and then just roll with it for a while and make a lot of stuff in the same scheme.

What do you think about these Currently Digging finds?

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Currently Digging – August 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds – like an Artist who’s work caught my eye…, some Inspiration or the what, when and where that caught my eye and got my creative juices flowing, and Tools & Techniques I am currently digging like a new way to use a material or an application that I’m taking away. Hope you enjoy this.

I am taking a watercolor class and my teacher told us in the first lesson to check out John Singer Sargent’s watercolor paintings.

John Singer Sargent, The Bridge of Sighs, c. 1903–04

I loved his work before but looking closer of his works with watercolors just made me swoon. Look at the wonderful light and the movement in his figures. Check out his watercolors – Gorgeous!

YOU :) I love showing some old finds on my instagram story while decluttering my studio and asking you what I should do with certain things I have been storing forever. Recently I showed an old silver cigarette case and you came up with so many fun ideas.

A lot of them were art supply storing ideas and I will show you soon which art supply I will actually store in it. Tip…it won’t be what is in the picture- LOL

As I am working on different Pattern Books for my stencils I have rediscovered my love for spray paints yet again.

I do have some low odor acrylic spray paints and it is such an easy and fast way to create patterns with stencils. Now that I have a bit more space again on my workbench and right in front of the window it is the perfect time to get those yummie spray cans out again.

What are you currently digging? See you soon again with some new finds!

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Comments (2)

  • Robin S

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    I love it when you post this kind of info; it opens new areas for us to explore. Thank you!!

    Reply

    • Nathalie Kalbach

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      Robin, I am so glad you enjoy this series. thank you!!!

      Reply

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Currently Digging – July 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds – like an Artist who’s work caught my eye…, some Inspiration or the what, when and where that caught my eye and got my creative juices flowing, and Tools & Techniques I am currently digging like a new way to use a material or an application that I’m taking away. Hope you enjoy this.

Here we go for this month:

HuskMitNavn – yep …not a typo. I love his artwork! He is Danish, he is from Copenhagen and I found him on Instagram and ever since I am looking forward to his posts.

They are witty, they are fun , they make me smile and they are so good!

Go and follow him on instagram!!!

Traveling is such an inspiration – recently I have been to Amsterdam and walking around, taking pictures and just embracing everything that is different from what you know inspires me. As you might know I am a big advertiser of this kind of inspiration – and …shameless reminder – LOL- I wrote a book about it ;) Artful Adventures in Mixed Media. So when I came back from my trip I made sure to start painting right away. Below is the work in progress of a painting – only the underpainting is applied.

I am excited that I went to the studio right away and cannot wait to share with you some time the finished painting. BTW- am I the only one who sometimes finds the underpainting quite striking (or is this just procrastination talking out of me- hahahaha)

Ever since I took a denim mending course last year at the Textile Institute and also released my Embroidery Stamps – I am hooked on embroidery :) It is one of my favorite things now to do in the evening.

I love that you do not need much – some fabric, some pretty embroidery thread or simple thread, some scissors (mine are foldable -best gift EVER- thanks Val!), a hoop  and a needle– bang there you go :) I am not really good at it and every person who is good in embroidery will shake their head, but who cares. I have fun and this is not something I do to have as a heirloom forever. I have a couple fun ideas planned for the next couple weeks and will show you soon – maybe I get you hooked up on this as well !

Hope you found the things I am currently digging interesting and see you soon again with some new finds!

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Currently Digging – June 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds – like an Artist who’s work caught my eye…, some Inspiration or the what, when and where that caught my eye and got my creative juices flowing, and Tools & Techniques I am currently digging like a new way to use a material or an application that I’m taking away. Hope you enjoy this.

Here we go for this month:

Last Wednesday my friends and I went to a MoMA opening which I will tell in a later posts about. They had opened another Gallery and my friend Adam pointed out this painting by Alice Neel.

To be honest, I had never heard about her but Adam talked in such a passion and with so much love about her work that I knew I had to check her out.

Her portraits strike something in me – they let you stop and feel with the person in the painting. Her life sounds interesting and I cannot wait to watch the movie about her. I hope you check her work out as well :)

With the better weather daily bike rides are back and on top of that my husband and I are also scouting out some other neighborhoods in the city. As most of you know I am always intrigued by old buildings especially if they also show a lot of patina like this one

I love this one so much with all the patina and also because you can see on the left and the right how it looks like when painted (restored?). All the intricate patterns in the tin, the lacy curtain -I wonder how this building looks like inside and who lived in this building, what stories could it tell.  I find this so inspiring and def. want to paint it some time.

As I have relentlessly mentioned (for the purpose of holding myself accountable to it- LOL), I am reorganizing my studio and while I was getting through one of my drawers I found one of my super super favorite tools again a woodgrain making tool.

I bought it about 15 years ago and have used it like a mad woman with modeling paste, heavy body paint, heavy gesso – oh man …anything that is a thicker paint medium. But then I kind of lost it in the move and when I found it again I jumped up and down and took it to town with my Gelli plate to make collage paper:

Twist, turn, drag …many options- oh Woodgrain tool – thank you for coming back into my life :) Now I am really excited about organizing my studio- who knows what else I re-discover- LOL

See you soon again with some new finds that I am currently digging !

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Currently Digging – May 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds – like an Artist who’s work caught my eye…, some Inspiration or the what, when and where that caught my eye and got my creative juices flowing, and Tools & Techniques I am currently digging like a new way to use a material or an application that I’m taking away. Hope you enjoy this.

Here we go for this month:

I am a huge fan of Cy Twombly and not only did I see some amazing paintings of his just recently, I was also at the Gagosian Gallery with Kim and another friend to see a collection of his drawings. No photos allowed there though – the following is from MoMA.

His vivid colors, scratching, dripping, writing – fascinating and so tactile. I especially loved his work in handmade books also shown at the gallery. Makes me want to grab my art journal and get loose :)

I have two words for you…Babylon Berlin

It is a German TV Series- which you can watch on Netflix which plays 1929 in Berlin during the Weimarer Republic. It is not for the faint hard – nor for someone who might have a problem with explicit pictures or language …

It is amazing! Not only is the criminal story great and the interweaving of historic facts and fiction, but the visual inspiration is so GOOD! Alone all the different scenes in rooms with the most amazing wallpaper, the clothing, the pattern , the colors. I could not stop watching and I def. would love to go back and now that I know how the story goes ;) I would love to look at some of the decoration again. I hope the English dubbed version is ok – I know that is sometimes a problem with those shows and I personally could not stand it …but then…LOL- lucky for me once …I didn’t have to ;)

Ok….ready? You gonna laugh but I am totally digging USING Washi paper and Washi tape.

Before I was just COLLECTING it but now that I am off to reorganize my studio once again and am therefore using tons of stuff …I am actually totally hooked using it ;)

Since I have been hoarding it for such a long time and also because the adhesive is not the best anyway – I apply some gel medium under the tape and paper and over it. Now …if you are a collector of Washi tape and paper …hopefully I made you wanna use it as well with this post ;)

See you soon again with some new nifty finds that I am currently digging !

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Currently Digging – April 2018 AIT

Once in a while I thought I would share with you some nifty finds – like an Artist who’s work caught my eye…, Inspiration and the what, when and where that caught my eye and got my creative juices flowing and Tools & Techniques I am currently digging and what did they do that was so cool or the application that I’m taking away. Hope you enjoy this.

Here we go for this month:

I talked about Isamu Noguchi in my blog post yesterday as I went to the Noguchi Museum for an Art Stroll recently.

Isamu Noguchi, one of the most important sculptors and designers of the 20th century, was born in 1904 in the the U.S to an American mother and a Japanese father. His father was a well known poet who went back to Japan before Isamu was born. Isamu grew up partly in the States and in Japan. When he and his mother were living in Japan, he drew a house when he was 8 years old. The house combined western and eastern elements and his mother decided to have him oversee the design and construction of their new house. He became an apprentice of a carpenter and that is when he started learning how to work with wood and other materials.

His sculptures are beautiful and emotional to look at and his light sculptures are such a wonderful way of combining traditional with modern design, art with craft, and west with east. I am equally inspired by his interesting life as well as his work.

“We are a landscape of all we have seen.” – Isamu Noguchi

And this leads me to the next point on my list:

I had watched the movie “Leonie” several years ago and remember I enjoyed it, but after going to the Noguchi Museum and traveling to Japan, I rewatched it and this time it totally sparked inspiration and lots of thoughts.

The movie actually tells the story of Isamu Noguchi’s mother and her fascinating and interesting life- what a powerful woman. I also enjoyed the pictures and sceneries of the movie. Of course a lot of the plot is speculation, but maybe you find it as interesting and inspiring as I did- so I highly recommend watching it.

Currently I am totally obsessed with my inkstone and inkstick.

Inksticks are a type of solid ink used traditionally in several East Asian cultures for calligraphy and brush painting. There is so practical for traveling since you do not have to worry that an ink bottle might break and they are small and light. You basically take a little bit of water and add it to the inkstone and then grind the inkstick on top of it until you get ink that is thick and deep black. The amount of water determines how much ink you make.

I love the different gray shades that the ink from the stick creates when using it on paper. I used it for some line and mark making as well as sketching out those two ladies above. I am still practicing but I am already deeply in love with my new tools :)

See you soon again with some new nifty finds that I am currently digging !

Comments (2)

  • ARHuelsenbeck

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    I put Leonie on my watchlist on your recommendation.

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