Sunday, January 31, 2010

Debbie Clarke Verre Eglomise Demonstration Video Part II

the drawing of Paul continues

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Debbie Clarke Verre Eglomise Demonstration Video Part I

Capt Joey's video of my demonstration as seen on

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Saatchi Showdown 25 january 2010 through1 February 2010

Click for the direct link to my Saatchi Showdown Entry.  Saatchi Showdown is where artists place their work (one piece only) against other artists work.  The public rates the work by clicking stars (1=lowest, 10=highest).  athe the end of the round, the two artworks with the highest average rating go head-to-head and advance.

This is my second submission to the Showdown.  In the last showdown i got a bit over 1200 views/ratings with an overall average of  6.96. 

The ratings begin tomorrow greenwich time...9am.

My entry is a verre eglomise mirror, titled "Wedding House".  It is a glass drawing that I completed last summer for the Peabody Historical Society's "Historic Interpretation" show.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Where it all began, a word about me and why I Blog

It all began in a long, long time ago.  only yesterday.  1998 or 1999.  we got connected.  EB could play online games (Diablo), Donald could keep track of friends, I could email clients.  We could get on the World Wide Web.  I made an intrepid post about Magnolia's "Grave's Beach" or was it Gray's beach? or was it stinky beach.

I was taken with the idea that Douglas Adams was onto something. You could sit on the beach in East Zimbabwe and find the nearest espresso counter with whole wheat ciabiatta. 
and one day google appeared, and then iphones and i have decided to follow.  I am following Doug Adams and the answer to life, the universe and everything is the number

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ralph Mayer's "The Artist's Handbook"

Uncle Steve gifted me with this book when I was 14 years old.  I never read it cover-to-cover until I was well out of art school and raising my daughter.  I was painting with casein paint, my daughter was 18 months old and got into my palette.  My painting abruptly stopped when she started making gagging sounds, turned around to find she had her tongue hanging out, covered in yellow casein.  She survived after much mouth washing, and was not poisoned, but...

This book taught me safe studio practices, the properties of dry pigments, what pigments are deadly (think cadmium, lead, heavy metals).  There are instructions for making slaked plaster, how to prepare a canvas, which paints should never be sanded, how to gild, where to get supplies.  20 years later, I purchased the up-dated guide.  If you are serious about your art and you are into experimenting with materials you have to use this book and learn how to be safe with your art materials.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

My Saatchi Showdown entry, knocked out

This is The Chorus Line, a verre eglomise mirror with marker on a mixed media support.  It is my entry in Saatchi Online's Showdown.  The link should click through to the rating page:  1-10.  Current stats show a few 1259 ratings with the overall average of 6.96.  If you are inclined, rate it!  The winner goes into the next showdown, and the ultimate winner will get to show the work at Saatchi's Gallery in London!  Thanks for your consideration and support.  This is the first time I have ever done this!  My gallery on the site needs to be updated. If you have questions about the work or pricing, let me know.

 best, deb.

i tried, maybe i will load up for the next round.  or not.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Another Book in my Studio

"Exhibiting Work

Question: How can I get my work out? Answer: Find new sources for exhibiting. Don’t rely on the old power structure. Find new sources in the community. All artists cannot exhibit in New York City. Where you are is good. Build up your own area, particularity if there is a weak cultural community. They need you for their vision. All Italian artists did not go to Rome. There were Venetians, Florentines, Umbrians, Sienese. Regionalism is important."

The above quote found within this little gem of a book saved my life as an artist.  I had just returned to my hometown after living in New York for a few years.  Home where there was beauty, artists and an art market for 'genre' paintings.  I felt as if I had left the 'art market' behind me and was starting all over again from the beginning.  This book came to me and this quote gave me courage to remain here.  I didn't give up on art, I just gave up the idea that the only place to make great art was in the city.  I don't know where the epicenter of the art world is now.  I rarely read art magazines. I don't know who the 'it girl' or the 'it boy' is.  What I do know is that my art keeps me busy, I have helped a few artists along the way, and have grown roots right here in my hometown.

You can get this book for a penny!  a penny!  it is worth a million more.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Helen Van Wyck: She will teach you how to paint, or make soup.

Helen Van Wyck's color recipes is in my studio library. 

I met Helen when I was 13 years old and had just started lessons with Gloucester artist Ken Gore.  My grandmother, grandfather, great-aunt were taking lessons with Helen, and she had just released a new book on painting with acrylic paints.  I went to the book release, she signed my book, it too is in my collection.  It is the first 'how to' book I ever owned.  The most valuable lesson in her acrylic book was how to block in the head, to do portraits.

In color recipes Helen explains in very simple language and color accurate photos, the properties of pigment, paint and light.  The best information this book gave me is about reds.  Have you ever noticed that some reds (cadmiums) lean towards orange, and that cadmium reds turn dull when extended with white?  The best red to use?  Grumbacher Red!  It is a true red, leaning neither towards orange nor blue.  I stays bright and true in mixture and dries a bit faster than the cadmium reds. 

Helen writes in a warm accessible manner that makes me feel as if I am in her studio with her, learning how to paint, or make soup! 

So, if you are having issues with your color, and want to know how to make warm greens, which colors 'creep', which whites are warm or cool...get this book! 

 if you click through to Amazon from here, I will get a small piece of the pie for my recommendation.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

egg glue

Gilder's glue, also known as gelatin 'slurry' is used to create verre eglomise mirrors, and can be applied other smooth surfaces to adhere gold or silver leaf. this video is an early attempt to create a how-to video with a very primitive editing program that chopped up my video with some wacky effects. if you would like clarification of the procedure for making the slurry, please let me know. one of by objectives for this year is to make a few more 'how to' videos about verre eglomise, egg tempera, drawing, other gilding methods or whatever catches my artistic fancy.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Bruce Jackson, Australian Glass artist

Eucalypt Forest, verre eglomise, precious metal alloys
posted with permission of the artist/copyright owner
Bruce Jackson, Australia

I discovered Bruce's work on the web yesterday and with his permission have added a link to his site. First, the work is absolutely amazing, the play of the metals and the light must be incredible to live with. The fine artist has taken an old world craft technique and turned it to his use to create sculptural paintings. This is a swatch for kitchen backsplashes! backsplashes! this work belongs on museum walls. one of the drawbacks to doing private work, for private installations is that the work gets seen by very few. Bruce has solved this by sharing his vast visual inventory and knowledge with the world through his site. If you are interested in verre eglomise, and reverse glass with a contemporary twist, you gotta check out his work!
the title of this post is clickable to his site.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Saatchi Showdown 1/11-1/18/2010 entry

The title should click through to my entry in the saatchi showdown. I placed a portfolio on Saatchi Online a few years ago and have never done much with it. I got a few scam emails, a few click throughs to this magpie nest, but other than that...nada. When the email came to my inbox to load up for the next round of the Saatchi Showdown, this Chorus Line entry was my response. If you would like to rate my work for the showdown, click the title. and while you're there, you can check out the rest of my portfolio, and the Saatchi site. There is a lot of great stuff on there, and some not so great, and everyone gets a chance to be a star...or not.



Sunday, January 3, 2010

Merluccius Bilinearis: then and now

Merluccius Bilinearis: 1995 for The Cape Ann Museum

Merluccius Bilinearis aka St Peter's Thumbprint
2009 private commission

Merluccius Bilinearis is the Latin identification for "Hake". it is a spiney fish of the cod family, fished for out of gloucester. The green version is in the permanent collection of The Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester MA. it is the most commented upon painting of the 7 fish paintings i created for the museum's Making Waves exhibition, curated by Sharon Whorley. This year I did another 24x36" verre eglomise glass drawing for a private collector. The 2009 work incorporates a silver mirrored surface.