Saturday, January 5, 2013

"Textured Layering"


"Textured layering with transparency creates depth." Technically speaking, all art is layering, but there is something about transparency that gives it more depth and more mystery.

This, of course, is another mixed media piece. Yesterday, I went into detail about the basic steps of how this particular process was created. Today I would like to touch on the particular techniques that create transparency. 

The most obvious transparency has to do with the materials. Rice paper is a wonderful paper because it was made for printing techniques and it has a wonderful translucence that can turn into transparency by gently rubbing over the surface, especially if it has just been glued to the support. There is just enough moisture in the top surface to "pill" off as you gently rub it with your fingers. 

The silk tissue paper (gampi) is also a beautiful material because it is totally transparent as you can see in the line engraved print of the leaves. Unusual color notes can be achieved by placing mono printed rice paper over the background, followed by the printed tissue paper. 

Deconstruction is also a way of achieving transparency by brushing gel matte medium over an old text page or a mono printed rice paper and then placing it over a section of the piece. Letting it sit for a minute or two and then removing the paper will leave behind an imprint of either the color or the text. It can be taken a step further by also rubbing over the deconstructed text and removing even more of the paper to create the transparency seen in the leaves and in the green color notes at the bottom.

This is a richly textured surface and even more can be achieved by working larger and introducing a more varied range of mono printed papers. It's extremely addictive, but I heartily recommend it as a way of show casing your personal drawings by printing them on silk tissue paper and including them in this type of mixed media setting. And there you have it...just a few more things to think about.

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