Friday, September 10, 2010

Playing Around With Gesso

I'll be honest. I hadn't used gesso since my college oil painting class years ago and didn't realize it's utility in collage art until I opened Bee Shay's Collage Lab and read the table of contents. Today, I did Lab 1 "Basic Gesso Surface." Here are my results, along with notes on what I enjoyed or did not with each technique. The base is watercolor paper. I tinted the gesso using acrylic colors.

I used masking tape to mask off some shapes and lines. Then I painted a light yellow tinted gesso thickly over everything. Once the gesso dried, I experimented with some washes using ink and watercolor. I like the depth created by the texture of the gesso and washes here. Since I normally do not use masking or hard edge, I enjoyed experimenting with straight lines in my composition.

I started with a rosy tinted gesso as the base. Next I painted some blue gesso on corrugated cardboard and pressed that on the gesso coated paper. Peeling the cardboard away led to the interesting vertical lines you see. Using the wrong edge of a paintbrush, I doodled over the background, creating a lighter line. Interesting effect that I will definitely use again!!

In this experiment, I began by stamping the blue tinted gesso shapes with a small glass candle holder. I next sponged some orange tinted gesso in and around the shapes. Once the gesso dried, I went back in with an ink wash to tie the color scheme together. 

I quickly sponged a thick, blue tinted gesso on the paper, following with sponged red tinted gesso shapes over the blue. I used the wrong end of a paint brush to draw some lines to allow the blue to show through the red and suggest more of a composition. 

Conclusion: Gesso is fun! I hadn't used so freely before and enjoyed trying it out today. I will definitely find ways to incorporate it into future collage projects.

No comments:

Post a Comment