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Hi, I'm Cyndi, and I've been writing and updating  Mixed Media Artist since 2005.  If you're a new visitor, welcome! Come tr...

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Have you played with alcohol inks?




I've found myself obsessed with alcohol inks, even though I haven't done much with them.  Yet.  But what I *have* done is to gather lots of images that inspire me and tutorials that show me the ropes, and I'd like to share them with you!  Click on the board above, or on the link to Pinterest here, and browse away to your heart's desire :-)


 

Also, I'd like to remind you about this amazing book by Cathy Taylor on using alcohol inks.  My book review is at the link. 

Monday, January 29, 2018

Gravity Waves a Fond Farewell - a mixed media painting

 
Gravity Waves a Fond Farewell
Cyndi Lavin, 2017
Gallery

The LIGO Labsite is one of the detectors working on gravitational waves.  I'm not even going to pretend that I understand everything about it, even though I've read all the layman's scientific articles on it that I can find.  Gravitational waves are in general caused by accelerations that are not symmetrical...like stars going supernova or black holes colliding.  The image above is my interpretation of two black holes circling prior to a collision.  

A tutorial for the basic techniques is at the link. 


Copyright 2018 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. The tutorial only may be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Book reviews: 2 new wool applique books!


Cozy Wool Applique by Elizabeth Ann Angus has eleven cute and clever projects that use fusible applique accented by basic embroidery like blanket stitch.  The projects are divided into seasonal themes, and include pillows and table runners.  This book is great for a beginner, because all the projects include step-by-steps with patterns included.



Everything's Blooming by Erica Kaprow is for the more experienced wool applique artist.  This book comes with full-sized pattern sheets to make the quilt shown on the cover.  It includes 30 blocks and is a stunning creation.  Erica likes that you can take a block or two along with you to work on, making it a portable project until it's time to assemble!!

Monday, January 22, 2018

Do Magnets Dream of Electron Pairs?

 
 Do Magnets Dream of Electron Pairs?
Cyndi Lavin, 2017
Gallery

I went leafing through my husband's undergraduate basic physics textbook one day, looking for more inspiration for my Sacred Geometry series.  I came across a very cool image that inspired the piece above.  I'm not sure if the image was from a bubble chamber or a cloud chamber.  It may have been a cloud chamber, because it was fairly old.  However.  The image showed electron-positron pairs reacting in a magnetic field.  Very cool.

A tutorial for the basic techniques is at the link. 


Copyright 2018 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. The tutorial only may be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Book review: Joyful Stitching



Laura Wasilowski has an unmistakable style, and if you love it as much as I do, you're going to want to see her new book Joyful Stitching.  She is known for her happy colors, deceptively simple shapes, and tantalizing thread embroidery.  Using beautiful wools, silks, and felts, Laura takes you through the process of designing and stitching up delightful free-form embroidery pieces.

Laura's book starts with the materials and tools that you'll need.  If you've done any amount of needlework, you most likely already have everything you need, though you might want a few new colors.  Laura works on solids, so save those printed fabrics for another day.  The next chapter gives you options for transferring designs to your fabrics if you don't want to completely free-style it.  And next comes 21 different stitches that are the most useful in her work, from the simplest running stitch to the more challenging bullion stitch.  Good instructions mean that you'll be able to do them all, even if you're a beginner.  Patterns are included!  

 

Joyful Stitching also includes 6 start to finish projects in Laura's signature style, followed by additional ideas for making the artform your own: using different background fabrics, creating shapes, line, and texture, stitching variations on the basic stitches, creating your own patterns and motifs, and finding new sources of inspiration.  The final section of the book discusses display options and ideas so that your work doesn't have to end up in a pile like mine is!!    


Monday, January 15, 2018

Anti-Doesn't Matter

 
Anti-Doesn't Matter
Cyndi Lavin, 2017
Original and prints for sale

Anti-matter was first detected in a cloud chamber, the forerunner to the bubble chamber.  It's amazing how much our understanding of elementary particles and how the universe works has changed in the last 70 to 80 years!  If you want to know more about anti-matter, there's a nice easy-to-follow chapter from a physics textbook at the link. 


Tutorial information is found at the link!

Copyright 2018 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. The tutorial only may be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Monday, January 08, 2018

Charmed Particles - a mixed media painting

 
 Charmed Particles
Cyndi Lavin, 2017
Original and prints for sale

I've always had a difficult time keeping the different types of particles straight, especially the elementary particles.  Searching through Wikipedia brought me to a wonderful chart that has helped me to visualize the relationships.  My husband studied anti-electron neutrinos in grad school, and I seriously thought he was making up some of the stuff he told me.  Quarks, such as charm and strange, are quarks, whereas all types of neutrinos are leptons.  There!  Clear??

Anyway, I found some cloud chamber and bubble chamber images from CERN, Brookhaven, and Fermi Lab (widely available online) and allowed them to inspire this piece as well as some that follow.  I didn't yet know that this was going to become a series.  When I say that the images inspired my pieces, I mean to say that they are not accurate representations, merely my feelings and interpretations of things that I don't even pretend to understand.

Isn't science fun?

There is a materials and tools list, and brief directions, on the post for Sacred Geometry.

Copyright 2018 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. The tutorial only may be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Sacred Geometry

Sacred Geometry
Cyndi Lavin, 2017
Original and prints for sale


Ever since I started dating my husband, I have found the shapes, patterns, and fantasy illustrations that are used to represent particle physics concepts fascinating. I wasn't completely aware that's what my new series was going to be about in the very beginning...I was just trying something new, and found it enjoyable.  The first one didn't really even have a lot to do with physics.  I just kept stumbling across the triad and its association with the sacred.  So I played with it one afternoon.

That afternoon's enjoyment morphed into a larger series that are representations of elementary particles in bubble chambers, electric currents, gravity and black holes, and magnetic fields.

I can't give you exact step-by-steps for these, but I can certainly give you the general idea if for some reason you wanted to try your hand at something similar:

Heavy watercolor paper cut to size
Foam brushes and rollers

Paper towels from previous projects, covered in acrylic paints (used to mop up)
Matte medium

White gesso
Waterproof black India ink
Razor blade

Faber-Castell Pitt Pen, brush style, black
Spray bottles
Gloss medium

Krylon clear acrylic spray, satin


I used old paper towels from previous projects that were covered in Dick Blick acrylic paints (and dried) to collage the background with matte medium.  After it dried, I used a foam roller to very lightly hit the high spots on the towels with white gesso.  I used a combination of India ink and Pitt pens to add the design lines, and increased the white "frame" around the design.  



This post contains affiliate links: Dick Blick

Copyright 2018 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. The tutorial only may be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains
intact.
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