alive and sketching

A Creative Life, art techniques, artist book, artistic inspirations, books, ebook, psychogeography, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue

I have an ancient Sufi saying posted on my studio wall “Stay close to anything that makes you glad to be alive”.  So when I go sketching I’m looking for things in the world that catch my eye, gives me an artistic thought or two – and yes, makes me glad to be alive.

Which dovetails nicely with the Thanksgiving season. I’m glad to be alive and to be able to be an artist – and thankful for living in the Pacific Northwest surrounded by so much natural beauty and so many artistically inspiring places, people, dogs, cats and things… food and drink too…

So I’m flirting with thoughts of publishing my sketchbook as an ebook/artist book. Here are two of the potential pages about a place I hiked called “Hamilton Mountain”.

What do you think?  To publish or not to publish. That is the question to take up after the holiday.

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Sue Clancy’s sketch on Hamilton Mountain (pen, ink and watercolor)

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Sue Clancy’s sketch of things found on Hamilton Mountain

 

seeing art in autumn leaves

A Creative Life, Art Apparel, art exhibit, art gallery, artistic inspirations, fine art, pattern design, psychogeography, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue

I’ve 2 different one-woman art exhibits already scheduled for 2017 – and already there’s discussion of another exhibit for 2018. So I’ve been taking walks to gather inspiration.  Which means lots of sketchbook work, doodling and experimenting with pattern designs. Here’s a sketch I did along the River-walk in Vancouver…

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Sue Clancy’s sketchbook page; ink and watercolor done on location as she walked.

Also in my sketchbook I did some ink and watercolor drawings of some of the fallen leaves during that same walk. You can see that sketch along with a pattern-design tile I was working on in this photo here:

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Sue Clancy’s sketchbook page and a pattern design “tile” she was creating using cut handmade paper.

And here are photos of a pocket square, a scarf and a tote bag I created using my “Autumn Leaves” pattern design as part of my art apparel collection: http://shopvida.com/collections/sue-clancy

Now I’m thinking and re-thinking this overall-leaf motif and how it may relate to my paper-making techniques. I’m also plotting how to use this design – or variations on it – in future fine artworks.

Between now and the actual paper creation there will be more walks and more sketches of leaves (and probably other things).  I saw some beautiful ginkgo tree’s downtown the other day…

Yes, this is a long-term project.  But, don’t worry, there will be breaks for lunch.

 

the art of Oregon coast sketching

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, art techniques, artist book, illustration, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, Uncategorized, words and pictures

In addition to getting ready for a new one woman art exhibit scheduled for October 2016 via Caplan Art Designs I’ve been working on a new Oregon Coast article. The August 2016 issue of Oregon Coast Magazine currently has an article of mine – and it was such fun to do that I’ve started immediately on a new article!

Which means that when “fine art stuff” and “pattern design stuff” needed to dry recently my wife and I took off for a day along the Oregon Coast.  On the coast I used my on-location sketching kit pictured below and sketched what I saw and experienced as it happened.

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Sue Clancy’s portable sketching-on-the-go gear

In my kit: mechanical pencil, eraser, ink pens, paper, a small watercolor set and a clip to keep my pages from blowing in the wind. It all fits in a small bag and can be held in my hand or balanced on my knee at my sketching location.  When something catches my eye during my travels I do quick sketches with my pencil. Then I ink in what lines I want to keep. After that I’ll do some watercolor washes. Generally speaking it takes me about 20 minutes to do a page start to finish – I often work on more than one page at a time. On this sketching trip I did 15 pages total – as well as wrote notes, in longhand, in my sketchbook.

Then once I’m back at the studio sometimes I make an adjustment or two to the pages, and neaten them up (aka, erase pencil lines). My on-the-go kit doesn’t have a lot of greens and blues. So at my studio, for example, I’ll add a few more blue or green colors, if necessary, from my larger studio watercolor set.  Here below is a photo of a few of my new Oregon Coast article pages being touched up.  I do this immediately upon getting home from a trip while everything I experienced is still fresh in my mind.

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Sue Clancy’s latest Oregon Coast sketchbook pages being touched up with the larger watercolor set at Sue’s studio.

Next comes the paperwork for my submission to the Oregon Coast magazine editors: photographing my sketchbook pages, creating the digital files, sorting out which pages work best as illustrations, sorting the pages so they tell the best story, writing a cover letter… etc.

And yes, I am likely to create a new artist book from these sketches! I’m also likely to make some new pattern designs based on what I saw on this trip. Which means there will also be some new fine art….

Basically I’m going to be a very busy camper! What fun!

If you’re curious about the current article I have in the August 2016 issue of Oregon Coast Magazine here is a link to a blog post about that: https://sueclancy.com/2016/08/04/sketching-the-oregon-coast/

from pattern design comes

A Creative Life, animals in art, Art Apparel, art gallery, Art Licensing, art techniques, fine art, pattern design, travelog, travelogue

A road trip to the Oregon Coast took my wife and I through the Oregon wine country. Hills flow up and down along the road giving me a view of vineyards from different angles – including a near “birds eye” view from above. The view inspired a pattern design and I made lots of notes in my sketchbook.

Back at my studio I use a number of techniques to make my patterns on paper: marbling, paste paper, stenciling… and more.. then when the paper is dry I make fine art with it, or an artist book, or art apparel or all of the above if the paper is large enough. Anyway, here’s a picture my wife took of me creating that “vineyard inspired” pattern on paper using my stencil-past-paper combo technique:

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Sue Clancy creating a pattern on paper using a stencil-paste paper technique on hand dyed paper

When I think of a pattern design concept the pattern itself “tells a small story” – so I like to apply that “story” in several different ways. But how I use the “story pattern” depends on the larger story I want to tell. For example: one of my favorite things to do is sit with a glass of wine and read a book while wearing my pajamas – so I used parts of this vineyard inspired patterned paper when I created one of my fine art pieces that is about books/education. The art piece is titled “The Read Hat” and is specifically about how we tenaciously (like little dogs gather toys) collect information into our heads but I’m sure you’ll note the vineyard patterned “pajama’s” the dog is wearing. “The Read Hat” is currently at the Caplan Art Designs gallery in Portland Oregon.

Also I have friends who like scarves – and wine – so, while thinking the fun thought that someone could “wear” a vineyard – like the dog in my fine art piece – I did a scarf design with the same green dot pattern (titled “Vineyard Aerial View) that is now available via VIDA http://www.shopvida.com/collections/sue-clancy

Here is a picture of both projects:

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The left image shows a fine art piece by Sue Clancy titled “The Read Hat” which uses the pattern design inspired by an aerial view of a vineyard. The image on the right is of a scarf designed with the same green-dot pattern design titled “Vineyard Aerial View”.

sketching the Oregon Coast

A Creative Life, illustration, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, words and pictures

In the current August 2016 issue of Oregon Coast Magazine I have an article titled “Sketching The Coast”! Right there, in print, on page 42 it says “illustrations by Sue Clancy” (Wow!) !! On the title page of the magazine next to a big 42 it reads “An illustrator records her travel experiences to Newport in whimsical cartoons”. How fun is that for a teaser?!  But just think, my messy sketchbook, in print, in a slick glossy magazine, Oregon Coast Magazine, a gadzillion copies of which are actually available on newsstands right this minute! Blows my mind to contemplate that. Here’s a link to their website: http://www.oregoncoastmagazine.com/index.html – so you can order a copy mailed to you if you live someplace like Ohio, Pennsylvania or Timbuktu – but you’ll only see my article up close if you get an actual physical printed copy! Yep, you guessed it, I’m loving the whole “my art in print” thing!

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Sue Clancy’s illustrated article in the August 2016 issue of Oregon Coast Magazine

road trip inspired apparel

A Creative Life, Art Apparel, handmade papers, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue

Recently I took a wonderful road trip to Boise Idaho to visit family there. Drove through the Columbia River Gorge on the Oregon side… saw waterfalls on the way to Idaho, saw the sunlight on the Boise foothills, then on the way home – again through the Columbia River Gorge – there was a spectacular sunset, sun shining on the rocky cliffs above the water.  Needless to say I jotted pattern notes in my sketchbook. (I stopped at a rest stop to do that – don’t worry I did not draw and drive!) When I got back to the studio I created my patterns on handmade paper and then, after the papers were dry, photographed and uploaded the patterns to my signature collection at VIDA. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy  I’m imagining how fun it will be in the middle of winter to wear a waterfall, a summer sunset or the sunlit Boise foothills!

A pattern design I did based on a waterfall I saw on a road trip. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy

A pattern design I did based on a waterfall I saw on a road trip. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy

A pattern design I did based on a summer sunset I saw on a road trip. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy

A pattern design I did based on a summer sunset I saw on a road trip. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy

A pattern design I did based on seeing the sunlit Boise foothills on a road trip. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy

A pattern design I did based on seeing the sunlit Boise foothills on a road trip. http://shopvida.com/collections/voices/sue-clancy

 

coffee delivered

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, artist book, handmade books, handmade papers, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, visual story, words and pictures

I took my artist book “Coffee Please” to the 23 Sandy Gallery today. Had an enlightening visit with the gallery owner Laura Russell talking about the role of the artist’s book in the world… Of course I’m aware of the role of the artist book in my personal life – but to talk about the artist book as it fits into a larger picture was inspiring!  I also got to see other book-artist’s artist book work. Wow!  All of this reminded me that I needed to define “artist book” as I see it here on this blog:  It is a work of fine art that has the form and feel of a traditional book.  It is fine art often in a sequential form that tells or demonstrates a narrative or concept. Sometimes an artist book can feel almost “sculptural”, showing ideas in dimensions over page-leaf spans of time.

Do you remember Pop-Up books from when you were a kid? Yeah, artist books are fun like that but are conceptually created for grown ups.

Here’s a link to pictures of my book “Coffee Please” which is about coffee and travel: https://sueclancy.com/2016/02/29/artist-book-coffee-please/

Information about the upcoming exhibit at the 23 Sandy Gallery is here: http://www.23sandy.com/Upcoming.html

And yes, Virginia, there will be an exhibit catalog available!

coffee accepted

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, artist book, books, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, words and pictures

Just found out that my artist book “Coffee Please?” was accepted for the upcoming Wanderlust exhibit at the 23 Sandy Gallery!! http://www.23sandy.com/  I’m excited! More info about, and pictures of, “Coffee Please?” here: https://sueclancy.com/category/artist-book/  Going to go do my happy dance now!!

side A of "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy - a unique handmade artist book

side A of “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy – a unique handmade artist book

go sketching sandwich

A Creative Life, comfort food, food for thought, Not-So-Sketchy-Food, sketchbook, travelog, travelogue, words and pictures

I like to go sketching as a way to “gather data” that I’ll use in my fine artwork. I’ll go looking for colors, shapes, patterns and many other elements in the real world from which I’ll draw and make notes in my sketchbooks for reference use – inspiration – later in my studio.  Where I’ll go depends on the kind of data I’m needing to collect: is it botanical colors? natural shapes? or urban tile/brick patterns that I need? No matter where I’m heading there is often the question: “What to do about lunch?”

This sandwich is fast becoming my go-to-reliably-yummy-easily-portable fave.  I’m calling in my “Let’s Go Sketching Sandwich”. It’s a fave because of it’s yummy-ness but also for it’s portability. There’s no need for a cooler or a way to keep it cold (translation; no need to carry additional gear!), it’s not a messy sandwich and it can be eaten with one hand – all virtues in this artist’s book!  I can literally stick this simple sandwich in my art bag and go!

Here in this post is – irony intended – my sketch and notes about my sketching sandwich that I made in my sketchbook!

And yes, it is important to press the sandwich together – it helps meld the flavors. It is also helpful to wait an hour or more between making the sandwich and eating it.  This also contributes to this sandwiches portability; I can wrap this sandwich tightly in wax paper, put it in a ziploc bag and put that in the bottom of my art bag – any sketchbooks on top of the sandwich are helping me “meld” the sandwich. If it takes me 30 minutes or an hour to get to where I want to sketch – all the better. Now – let’s go! (Any curiosities about what else is in my “art bag” besides this sandwich can be settled here: https://sueclancy.com/2016/02/18/sues-sketching-setup/)

the Let's Go Sketching Sandwich - recipe and drawing in Sue Clancy's sketchbook

the Let’s Go Sketching Sandwich – recipe and drawing in Sue Clancy’s sketchbook

 

 

 

artist book Coffee Please?

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, artist book, books, handmade books, sketchbook, travel art and writing, travelog, travelogue, visual story, words and pictures

In this previous post I was in the process of creating a one-of-a-kind artist book for the 23 Sandy Gallery. I’ve finished it now and it’s titled “Coffee Please?”  Here are pictures:

handmade box front cover for "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

handmade box front cover for “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

handmade box back cover for "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

handmade box back cover for “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

side B of "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

side B of “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy

side A of "Coffee Please?" by Sue Clancy

side A of “Coffee Please?” by Sue Clancy